New Post Mortem, now with metrics!

So, because Book Two of Nowhere Island University is one update away from being completed, so I decided to do a Post Mortem. It turns out that it is a little early, so here it is. The last (and first) time I posted a Post Mortem on this site, I got some requests to see my view data. So, to make up for that, I decided to share what I have gotten for views so far. If anyone would like to tell me what these numbers mean, or if you want more stats or share your own, please comment below.

Article link:

You obviously do some promotion but do you do any Search Engine Optimization(SEO)?

I didn't see a category on the pie chart for google refers. That's my second largest source of visitors. Of course my site is still very new.

Really? Do you WordPress? How do you do optomize search engine hits? Or is that something only WordPress can do?

Haha, as someone who deals with SEO in his day-to-day work stuff, this is funny. Here's a decent primer on SEO, T4nky:

Idk that SEO is so relevant to web serials. As much as we might want to get noticed, SEO relies on keywords. Often, it assumes that you're relaying info that people want to read about (if someone types in, "planes," they're going to want facts about planes, more than fiction). There are some basic lessons to be gleaned: update frequently, get all your metadata in order. But for the most part, I wouldn't focus on it too much.

Anyway, a very interesting post. I'm trying to suss out the plot for book 2 of A Bad Idea right now, so this came at the right time.

Very happy to see that the graph you were using was views/visitors per month. I thought you were complaining about 3,000ish views a day, and I was ready to have some unkind words with you.

Also, just to talk about that pie chart for a sec: how long did you post to Tuesday Serial, and are you still doing so? I tried them, but didn't get a single hit. I'm also curious how many TWF referrals you got vs WFG.

Ya I use Wordpress. Feel free to check my site out.

I'm not sure exactly what you're using to measure traffic but I usually use Jumppack to access the the stats from You could also use any number of analytic plugins.

Are you asking me how to do SEO? That's a pretty complicated question. It has a lot to do with how you structure your site and getting good links. You can download some plugins that help. Be warned, good SEO can take a lot of time. <---- I use Yoast and recommend it.

Edit: I was beaten to it. I find SEO relevant to my serial. You just need to find good keywords. For instance I use 'dark fantasy' as one. Optimizing that can't hurt.

Granted, beyond a weekly update to Facebook, Tumblr, and a few Tweets, I don't make time to publicize. (I tried "Tuesday Serial" for several months last year, I think it only brought me one or two hits total, so I decided it wasn't worth the stress of remembering. Maybe I bailed too soon?) But I'm not a new writer - I had a different serial for 3 years prior. I even used to win fanfiction awards back in University. And I'm a consistent writer - the only week I skipped was Christmas. Even so, my current serial had more "zero hits" last week than not, and I've only had one posted comment on T&T's plot so far. One comment, out of 34 parts. (Okay, plus a review by Billy Higgins some months back, and a couple tweets in my general direction.) And... I've also mumbled about this fact in other threads so people are probably tired of hearing it and I'll shut up. >.<

Still, "spectacular", like anything else, is all relative. I'm just saying.

I'm not trying to gloat here, I'm just offering this up for comparison. I have over 800 views and 298 visitors and I just started earlier this month.

Seriously if your views are so bad and you want to improve them you should read some of the guides that are around. Also I'm sorry if I'm being to forward but you really need to move that amateur art somewhere where it is less distracting, like its own page.

Mathans, I like the way you've got your site set up. It's quirky and personal and feels like nothing else out there.

That said, there are a lot of things about your site that are non-optimal for maximizing views. If your goal is to get more views, I'd start a thread where you asked people to critique the site. It might be tough to hear, but you could also glean a lot from it. Just something to consider.

For all the people who are saying 100+ people a day is good: I don't have anything to compare it to. People are rarely commenting, so all I know is that it is not enough. Also, it is starting to feel like the self-promotion threads don't really work Yeah, it's cheaper than advertising, but I've gotten almost no feedback. I am kind of at a loss because I want to improve my serial in every way: site design, story quality, sentence structure, readership, income... everything. Maybe I am a little too ambitious, maybe I have no sense of proportion, maybe I'm trying to prove too much.

@t4nky : It seems to me that you're aiming for more feedback and comments, versus views...? (Though I know you said you wanted discussion in comments too, and I've been wrong before.) Granted, if we assume that commenters are maybe 0.1% of all viewers, then it's logical to assume that increasing views will increase comments. However, in terms of "not having anything to compare it to" - compare it to yourself. Speaking mostly as a teacher, it's more constructive to compare your skills NOW to your skills a MONTH ago, versus the skills of your classmates, or some arbitrary benchmark that exists out there. (Especially if it's not even a benchmark, but rather an outlier, as some serials are.)

If I compared my T&T stats to the majority of serials out there, I would probably remain terminally depressed, and give up. So instead I compare against (1) my first online serial, which after 6 months and 50 posts had only about 5 views per post and (2) the status of that serial after 4 years, which is a webcomic and getting me about 60 views per post. I'm still technically on track for that here which (in theory) means I'm no WORSE. (T&T won't be a webcomic though.) I can also compare it to Wattpad, where I literally have no views. None. I'm ahead of myself there. The other thing I've noticed is that feedback on things like site design or publicity are easier to pull out of people. I often get comments on THOSE posts, because everyone has an opinion. ("So if I do this, will you read the fiction too?" "Well, no, but maybe other people will." "Okee dokee.") So maybe if you split off part of the post-mortem as a suggestion poll or something?

Either way, I think you probably should pull out a focus, or a goal - not so much because you're trying to do too much (though maybe you are?) but because you do need something to measure yourself against. Basically, if you feel like "it's not enough", but you never define "enough"... you'll never get there. Simple as that. (I think this is why some people never feel like they have "enough" money - define a budget, guys.) Now, that doesn't mean your definition of "enough" can't change over time, but you can at least celebrate a victory before stretching yourself again (or reel yourself in, if you set your expectations too high too soon). Don't underestimate the value of those little achievements - I totally felt like it was a victory when someone actually looked at Part 2 of my story last month (as it had been the first time since May).

Though if you (or anyone) DOES want to compare yourself against me (and I suspect at least 90% of you will feel better about yourselves!), I posted about where my serial site was at after 365 days here: And summed up all my websites back in January here:

By the way, how long have you been working with Tuesday Serial? I'm as curious as Billy.

@ClearMadness: I'm guessing your SEO work is paying off there, congrats. As to my art, the reason I started illustrating was because posting on social media (FB and Twitter in particular) is more visible when there's an image... plus I didn't feel like messing with copywrite, plus I needed practice for the webcomic. Before the webcomic, I was told I draw like a 3 year old. So I'm gonna call "amateur art" a step up. Maybe not to "headlining" status yet, but I figured I'd try something new, and you're the first to say anything. (Aside: That is not the best picture of Julie, which was intentional - she just celebrated her 16th birthday by shooting her best friend, so she's in a bad place.)

@Billy: Glad you prefaced "quirky and personal" with "I like"... seeing as being unique is not necessarily a good thing. Frankly my goal is to get more than a single comment every few months, but I recognize that increasing views would need to come first. (And as I've said in other threads, the thing's been rewritten to hell and back, so I'm not changing part 1 for the sake of views - making part 48 into the new part 1, maybe.) Now, design hadn't occurred - and since most of what I know simply comes from poking my head into other blogs, your suggestion is well advised. Thanks.

I just did a quick search. Apparently, the first time I submitted was August 18. Why I got more views from it then you guys, I do not know.