It was 5:30am Monday morning. It didn’t seem out of the ordinary. It was dark out, I was tired, everything was pretty normal. As is my daily routine, I whipped out my phone and checked my site to make sure my new article had posted correctly and was being reviewed by my readers. At this point, everything looked good and my reader count for the day appeared as usual – something like 20 views by 5:30am. Cool beans – so I went about the rest of my day.
The next time I checked my analytics was when I was at work – sometime around 11am. My daily visitors were already over 700 and there were 44 people actively checking out my site at that very moment!
This type of volume has simply never happened before, so I figured I got picked up by another website – my guess was Rockstar Finance or Globe and Mail since I have been picked up by them recently – but nope, the analytics data showed that all my traffic was direct traffic, which means that all these readers were either clicking on the link in their subscriber email, or they just typed in the exact domain to get to my new article (obviously not likely). At this point, I was already suspecting that bots were the culprit.
I really don’t know anything about bots, and I have no idea why someone would want to hit a site with a bunch of fake visitors, but I found plenty of articles where people had been impacted by this. And unfortunately, our stories sounded very much the same – a huge number of visitors were hitting the site and it was all direct traffic…. crap, I have bots…whatever that means.
As the day went on, my numbers continued to soar. By early evening, I had almost 5,000 visits and saw that there were over 100 people on my site at that one instance. This just seemed crazy! I needed to find out if this traffic was legit, and if it wasn’t I had to figure out how to block out the bots.
Right after work, I found a very helpful article that explained how to find the source of the bots and ultimately, how to block them. As this article summarized it, either the hits on your site all come from one service provider (ie. Verizon or something) or they all come from one location (ie. San Francisco, CA). I dug into my numbers fully expecting to see these patterns, but alas, all the traffic was coming from various service providers and a wide variety of locations…. Could it be that this traffic was real?
And then I saw this tweet:
Whoa. My newest article, “9 Things the Rich Do That the Poor Do Not” was picked up by The SAHA Financial Daily! To be honest, I had never heard of this publication before, but they are apparently quite popular all around the world! My article was only one of five to be featured on their homepage that day, and because they only highlight a few lines and link everything directly to my site, this explains why the traffic i=was picked up as “direct”.
Throughout the remainder of the day, the visitor numbers continued to mount and at the strike of midnight, my visitor total for the day was 14,313. Holy…Crap…
My Goal Progress After Week #15
My goals are to, by the end of the year:
- Increase my visitors from 7,915 a month to 15,000
- Increase my Facebook followers from 534 to 1,000
- Increase my Twitter followers from 1,776 to 3,000
- Increase my subscribers from 1,088 to 2,000
As you may have guessed, my numbers are looking pretty good today! Let’s check them out!
Monthly Visitor Numbers
On that Monday when my site was picked up by SAHA Financial Daily, my visitor numbers were 14,000, which is almost as much as my record month before this! The next day, my numbers were still pretty high at 7,300, so needless to say that at this point, I have far exceeded my monthly visitor goal of 15,000 visits (BOOM!).
In the past 30 days, I have officially had 35,830 visitors. Whoa. That’s pretty huge. But, there’s no reason to take my pedal off the gas at this point. After all, if my day-to-day numbers don’t consistently improve, then these monthly totals will soon be right back to where they were a week ago (after these spikes in traffic move out). So, while these numbers are certainly awesome (and I’m still crazy excited about them), I need to keep pressing forward and continue to write some awesome posts.
As expected, with so many people liking my articles this past week, my subscriber numbers have increased as well. According to my count, my subscribers have increased by 23. Not too bad! And, the Feedburner increase appears pretty accurate as it’s about the same. I’m happy with this growth and hope to keep them all as well as acquire many more in the future!
In the past two weeks, I have really made an effort to post at least one article or a “words of wisdom” quote onto my Facebook page, and the fans are receiving it well. I have had many more likes, comments, and shares than I typically do (and to be honest, that article that got picked up by SAHA did help quite a bit as well). At this time, I have 592 Facebook friends compared to the 580 that I had last week. That’s a pretty good increase! I like it!
Last week I noticed that my Twitter followers were becoming stagnant (mainly because I was focusing most of my efforts toward my Facebook friends). This past week I decided to try to keep up with both of them at once. I followed some more personal finance accounts, I posted more tweets, and I socialized more with those that retweeted my work. These efforts obviously paid dividends as well. In just one week, my Twitter followers shot up by 44. I now have 2,064 Twitter followers of @LAMFinances. BOOM!
Summary of the Week
Since I had over 14,000 visitors on that Monday, my energy has been through the roof ever since! What if I could make this type of growth sustainable? What if I had 15,000 visitors every single day by the end of the year? How many visitors would that be per month? Would I start getting contacted for radio spots? The thought of all of this is crazy, but I think it’s absolutely possible. I just need to 1) keep my head down and continue to write amazing content, and 2) keep doing my best at marketing my site and getting the word out that my stuff is some of the best out there. I can’t wait to see what next week will bring! Stay tuned!