by Neil Chapman
This blogging business is causing me a few headaches already. Good headaches mind. Something to do with not wanting to let my ’audience’ down; give ‘em something they will enjoy reading and want to come back for more. God, the arrogance of it… already I’m imagining I have an audience.
I should have one adoring fan though, my girlfriend.
I say should. I haven’t. Already she doesn’t like the site name ‘acksherly’, she doesn’t like my picture, and all that before I’d added any content! Now she’s got it into her head that she wants to ‘star’ in posts from time to time, a bit like A. A. Gill’s girlfriend ‘ The Blonde’ and the late Michael Winner’s wife, ‘Geraldine’. She didn’t go much for ‘Er Indoors’ or ‘The Ginger Minger’, so for future reference I’ve decided she will be called ‘My Wonderful Girlfriend’. That should keep the fragile peace for a while.
If you’ve been paying attention, you will remember the main reason why I’m blogging. It’s to try and make more people aware of the book ‘A few days up North’. Currently it’s just sitting there on its virtual shelf waiting to be picked up, looked at and bought. But unless you know it’s there how are people going to find it? No-one seems to know exactly just how many books are on the Amazon Kindle Bookstore, but it seems there are at least half a million. That’s a lot. Far too many to browse. So I know no-one is just going to stumble across my book.
Anyway…so how do I make this blog more interesting? More customer friendly. (You see, all those years in marketing weren’t wasted.) I’ve been looking around, surfing, checking out some of the other blogs on here, see what they write about. I had this stupid idea I might find a gap in the market. FFS! What was I thinking of? Do you know how big this thing is? I’m not much of a one for numbers, stats, that sort of thing, (well not since I read that 37.6% of all statistics were wrong), but some of the numbers are huge, and getting huger by the day.
These are just a few of the numbers for 2012 courtesy of Pingdom who collate this stuff every year.
“My audience?” This gives you some idea of what I’m up against.
- 634 million – Number of websites (December). … and I’m trying to stand out in all of this !
- 51 million – Number of websites added during the year…and they’ll be trying hard too
- 35% – The average web page became this much larger during 2012.
- 4% – The average web page became this much slower to load during 2012.
- 246 million – Number of domain name registrations across all top-level domains.
- 104.9 million – Number of country code top-level domain name registrations….ie: .co.uk… fr….de….
- 100 million – Number of .com domain names at the end of 2012.
- 33 million – Number of .net/.org/.biz/.info domain names at the end of 2012
$2.45 million – The price for Investing.com the most expensive domain name sold in 2012 … acksherly.com cost me about $30. Seemed a lot at the time.
- 2.4 billion – Number of Internet users worldwide.
- 519 million – Number of Internet users in Europe…. and there’s my market.
- 274 million – Number of Internet users in North America… and these. Have a nice day y’all.
- 565 million – Number of Internet users in China, more than any other country in the world…. but not these. I know some speak English but I don’t think we have much in common except for those crispy duck pancake thingys.
- 1 billion – Number of monthly active users on Facebook.
- 47% – Percentage of Facebook users that are female. …So men are the biggest users?
- 40.5 years – Average age of a Facebook user… and you were blaming the kids!
- 200 million – Monthly active users on Twitter, passed in December.
- 175 million – Average number of tweets sent every day throughout 2012.
- 37.3 years – Average age of a Twitter user…. That’s partly my fault. I’m dragging it up a bit!
- 307 – Number of tweets by the average Twitter user… I sent 7.
51 – Average number of followers per Twitter user.
Email … nothing to do with anything really, but interesting
- 2.2 billion – Number of email users worldwide.
- 144 billion – Total email traffic per day worldwide….per day!!
- 61% – Share of emails that were considered non-essential
- 68.8% – Percentage of all email traffic that was spam.
- 50.76% – Percentage of all spam that was about pharmaceuticals, the top category of all spam… err, pharmaceuticals. Sounds professional but I think they mean Viagra.
As I said, just a few of the numbers. And there’s more stats, loads more, but now I’m as bored as you are; after a short while, the numbers become just numbers; too big to get your head around. But it’s bad news and good news isn’t it? The bad news is that this internet thingy is a crowded market…loads of websites all fighting for readers time, and a million, a million new websites added each week. So how do you attract ‘em and keep ‘em coming back? I’m hoping the answer is to feed you boring statistics. We’ll see.
I also read somewhere also that millions of these blogs just die away, expire, are never maintained. But don’t worry. You’re luck ain’t in. I’m here for the long haul… this book of mine is going to take some selling.
So what’s the good news? Well the good news is that billions of people use the internet, and new users/ readers are arriving every day. So there’s plenty to aim at.
And it will be someone just like me, sitting in front of their computer who has an idea, for a better website, a better blog. Someone who will look at all those numbers and make sense of them and find a niche, a gap in the market.
I’m not saying that acksherly.com is the new kid on the block, or that the book will sell millions. But it has the same chance as every other new blog to find and reach out to its ‘market’.
I just need to figure out how, that’s all. And that’s the fun part… once this headache has gone.