Digg, Social Traffic, Software, StumbleUpon, URL Fixer, WordPress

Social Traffic Statistics

Until URL Fixer got Dugg last week, I hadn’t had a good real-life example for my Social Traffic Monitor WordPress plugin. What follows is an analysis of the traffic my blog received from social news and bookmarking sites late last week, as recorded by the Social Traffic Monitor plugin.

This is the chart that the Social Traffic Monitor generated for my URL Fixer page, showing visitors per hour from Thursday morning to Monday morning.

The first small hump is when URL Fixer was featured on Download Squad (and subsequently, Lifehacker) on Thursday morning. (The page had been submitted to Netscape some time ago, which is why the plugin was already logging the traffic at that point.) The huge orange spike is when the post hit the front page of Digg, at about 11PM Thursday night. Traffic was huge that first hour, but it halved by the next hour, and then slowly tapered down as the post moved to the second page of Digg, and then the third, etc.

The orangish hump in the middle of the graph is traffic from StumbleUpon. As you can see, the traffic from SU was never as intense as it was from Digg, but it was more consistent, and longer-lasting. (Just as those are good qualities to have in chewing gum, they are desired assets of website traffic as well.) StumbleUpon continued to drive heavy traffic to the post for about 10 hours, and then in smaller amounts of the next day and a half. Most of the visitors to the URL Fixer page are still coming from StumbleUpon.

Overall, I received about 8,000 visitors from StumbleUpon, 4,000 visitors from Digg, 2,000 from Lifehacker, and about 600 from Download Squad. (Del.icio.us barely registered with about 200 referrals.) So although StumbleUpon sent the most visitors my way, it appears that the traffic coming from Digg was the most appropriate to the content: according to my traffic logs, from Thursday night to noon on Friday, over 60% of visitors to the page actually downloaded the Firefox extension. After that (when visitors starting coming from SU), only about 15% of visitors were downloading the extension.

If you have a WordPress blog and would like to track how many visitors you receive from social sites, download and install the Social Traffic Monitor WordPress plugin.

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Blog, Digg, Plugins, Social Traffic, Software, StumbleUpon, URL Fixer, WordPress

Social Traffic Monitor 1.2

After giving it a workout this week with all the visitors to my blog from Digg and StumbleUpon, I’ve made some changes to the Social Traffic Monitor plugin for WordPress, and I’m releasing version 1.2.

Since version 1.1, I’ve added StumbleUpon as a social news/bookmarking source, fixed a few bugs with logging non-social-referring sites, and I’ve added the option to supply a formatting string for the plugin’s output. What this means is that you can now call the plugin like this:

	<php social_traffic('<div>%s</div>'); ?>

and the the plugin will replace the “%s” with its output, but only if it has something to display; otherwise, it will display nothing at all. This allows you to add borders, positioning data, or just your own custom code to the plugin’s output. (Calling social_traffic(); is equivalent to calling social_traffic("%s");.)

To upgrade, simply download and unzip version 1.2 and upload the included social-traffic.php to your wp-content/plugins/ directory.

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Blog, Browser Add-ons, Greencode, Recommendations, Social Traffic, URL Fixer

Hackers and Downloaders

Welcome, readers of Lifehacker and Download Squad. I hope you find URL Fixer as useful as I do.

Feel free to check out my other extension and software projects, and if you find any of it interesting, go ahead and subscribe to my feed. I typically write about Firefox extensions, my job at Netscape, and other technical items of interest on a semi-daily basis.

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Digg, Netscape, Netscape.com, Plugins, Recommendations, Social Traffic, Software, WordPress

Social Traffic Monitor: A WordPress Plugin

I’ve just put the finishing touches on version 1.0 of my first WordPress plugin, the Social Traffic Monitor. In a nutshell, it checks incoming traffic for visitors from social news sites (e.g., Netscape, Digg, Reddit) and when a post on your blog starts getting traffic from these sites, it begins to log each visit to that post. When it has at least one visit logged for a post, it displays a graph of visitors per hour, as well as a list of referrering sites and how many visitors each sent your way.

The full writeup and download are available over here; now all I have to do is write something in my blog that is interesting enough to get submitted to Digg or Netscape…

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