What Works, What Doesn’t

It’s Meta Sunday. You know what that means.

Every so often, I like to see what posts are getting the most attention. I’ve done it before in one of these Sunday posts. Time for an update!

Rather than list specific articles, I will just note the general topics and themes that seem to do best around here (in terms of people reading them).

What’s most popular?

  • History
  • Discussion of sexism and gender issues
  • Politics
  • Financial topics

That’s cool. I can work with those.

What’s least popular?

  • Discussion of ISIS
  • Discussion of sex work
  • Link roundups
  • International affairs

There are basically two patterns here. One is that posts about international issues tend to go ignored. Well, that’s fair enough. I suppose those aren’t really my strong suit. In addition, the link roundup posts tend to see very little traffic. I could blame that on search engine placement, since they are primarily collections of links (and I think Google frowns on things like that), but even when they are clicked, the outbound links rarely are, which defeats the purpose. I am therefore tempted to stop doing the link roundups at all. They don’t take much time compared to a regular post, but they do take some, and maybe this is a good place to prioritize. I am not sure what I’d do instead on Saturdays. I may just take the day off. For that matter, I have been considering dropping the Sunday posts, as well, since I can’t imagine anyone likes reading this sort of how-the-sausage-is-made material. A good compromise might be to only make such a post when I have something substantial to write about, rather than doing it because I’m obligated. It’s not as if there’s significant news about this blog on a weekly basis–it’s simply not big or popular enough! I also don’t like changing things willy-nilly. I like to have a reason.

Knowing what topics seem to resonate with the people who read this gives me a better idea of what I might focus on in the future. I’m still going to write about what appeals to me, because it’s my blog, but when unsure of what topic to choose for a given day, I will more likely lean toward one of the more popular subjects. It also tells me what areas may benefit from post series, rather than daily one-offs. At some point, I may develop a daily schedule. Something like this:

  • Sunday — Meta discussion.
  • Monday — Social justice issues.
  • Tuesday — Series installments, assuming I go forward with a series. I picked Tuesday because, for whatever reason, it gets the most traffic.
  • Wednesday — Economics and finance.
  • Thursday — Global events and issues.
  • Friday — American politics.
  • Saturday — Link roundup.

The series installments could be about anything. The idea is that, instead of one-off posts, each Tuesday post would be part of an ongoing series on a particular topic. The series could go on for a number of weeks, until I believe it is “complete” in some meaningful way. (Insert lengthy diatribe about how no topic can ever be completely covered.)

In any case, I am not committing to the above schedule just yet, but I will be thinking about it. I may give it a trial in the coming weeks to see how well it works for me, and how people respond to it.

Thanks again for reading!

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About the Author

James runs this blog and likes to write about society, culture, politics, science, technology, social justice, and pretty much anything else. Rumor has it people read his posts sometimes.

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What Works, What Doesn’t

by James time to read: 2 min
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