As noted last week, we are doing a two-week set of polls covering our site. It’s mainly to use as a tool to try and improve what we are already doing.
It’s also to help us understand our readers a bit.
The reality is, blogs aren’t always successful. You can’t base everything on the amount of visits or hits you get. You have to base it on your readers. Many blogs have people who visit once and never come back. Some blogs get massive hits, but the content isn’t great.
We aim to have a solid following and to them, we strive to give the best possible content. In many facets, the content on Rattling Chains isn’t available anywhere else based on what our writers go through to give you these things.
Before diving back into that, let’s check out last week’s poll about visiting the site.
Though we hoped for more voters, this kind of proved the point originally thought — the readers we do have seem to be loyal. And, in turn, we hope to be loyal to you.
Of the 76 people who voted last week, 49 percent (37 votes) said you visit the site daily (whenever a story is posted). Second place, understandably so, with 17 percent (13 votes) was when you see something that interests you.
Following that was when you see it linked from somewhere else (16 percent/12 votes), weekly (13 percent/10 votes), very rare – three or fewer times per month (4 percent/3 votes), and monthly (1 percent/1 vote).
Now, let’s check some of the comments.
I voted for “daily,” but 3-5 times per week would be more accurate; I definitely visit more than “weekly.” I always look back to see what I missed if I haven’t visited in a few days or more. I look at every article and read about 90% of them; not every article appeals to me, but I wouldn’t expect all of them to. Your site is the only disc golf site I visit regularly (besides PDGA and DGCR, mainly to search courses). I access your site from my saved favorites list. I prefer not to receive email updates and I am not on Facebook.
I think Rattling Chains is great and everyone does a great job. I appreciate all the volunteer work put in to it. My only complaint is the slightly greater frequency of grammatical and spelling errors present. Everything else is great. Thank you.
This sounds like my personal viewing habits on many websites. Check it often and what you missed, go back and read. We also appreciate the feedback. As I noted on the comment last week, if you — or anyone — sees an error, please e-mail me so I can correct it. We live in a digital age where things can be corrected, but if I don’t know or see them, it’s tough to correct. Though I believe we have a strong cast of writers, not everything will be caught, so being able to fix it is a good thing.
I have Rattling Chains linked to my Google Reader account, so I always know when a new post is loaded. My favorite posts are the Polls, I feel a sense of community with polls and reading comments. I do not like posts when blogs (not just RC) ask for “likes” or “follows” or “re-posts”… It seems a bit tacky, I mean if a reader genuinely likes something, they will probably do these things without a reminder or with a bribe of winning something.
While I fully understand about the likes/follows/re-posts, I think we only tend to really request it during contests or giveaways. The obvious reason there is to try and get maximum exposure for those contests. We link it at the end of stories so people — whether regular readers or new readers — know where else they can find us. It’s basically a “signature” like you’d see in a newspaper or magazine where there would be e-mail or website addresses.
Dave Cecil noted:
My suggestion is to keep doing what you are doing now. You address many subjects, don’t hang on one, anybody can comment, and your quality comes from caring. Nobody has to go to a site to enjoy DG, because they already do. Most want to see what everybody else’s interests are. You are a source of information for all levels of players. When you stop being interesting, players will go elsewhere. Don’t rely on just the number of hits, everything has a cycle so viewers my stop for a while but will return when time allows. Keep on rattling the chains, everybody will hear them eventually. We do.
Thanks for those comments, Dave. They are much appreciated!
Tim J said:
I read every article, beginning to end. I get emails when new articles appear. I comment when I feel like it, but otherwise usually don’t read the comments. I like the range of topics, and I agree that there is no substitute for this site. There are so many things I have learned about from this site, from gear to people to trends. For example, I had no idea about the Ultimate videos and really enjoyed watching some of them. Basically, you do not miss; you rattle the chains.
It’s our hope that we do give something people can’t find anywhere else. Thanks for being a loyal reader!
I vote on every poll. I read only the stuff really interests me. If I get partway through a post that is on a subject that is not my bag I just skip it a wait til the next day. Most of the stuff is pretty well written and thought out. Enjoy RTC for the most part.
I think, honestly, this is the reading habits of most. I’m the same way on many blogs I follow. And thanks for being honest — it’s what we need to we can continue to grow!
I appreciate everybody who took the time to vote and to comment. It helps us grow as a site.
Now back to this week’s poll…
I will touch upon many of these things in a follow-up post in a few weeks, but these two polls are helping us shape the site a bit more. We’re still going through growing pains and we understand things need to be added, changed, eliminated or tweaked as we continue to grow.
This week, we want to ask you about our content. The poll asks you what your favorite things we do are. You can vote for up to two items. Let us know in the comments why you like or don’t like certain things. It will help us get a feel as a whole about what we are doing. And if you have things you think we should consider for the future, by all means let us know in the comments as well.
Note that this poll likely won’t be the deciding factor on whether or not we do or don’t run something, but it will help us in knowing what readers want more of in the long run.
This week’s poll also allows two selections per voter.