While I think it’s an interesting thing I also do wonder whether it’s as big a deal as some are reporting it to be (ie I’ve seen a few ‘newspaper blogs are booming’ headlines going around. Perhaps I’m a little cynical but I think this has been a little blown out of proportion for two reasons:
Normal Blogs Grow at Similar Rates
From memory, most newspapers that started experimenting with blogs did it within the last 18 or so months (quite a few even more recently).
From my experience of blogs – it generally takes them 12 months to really hit their straps in terms of traffic. They need that long to establish a profile, get search engine ranking, build incoming links to them etc.
It’s little surprise then that they’ve seen growth in the last 12 months – I’m only surprised that it’s not been bigger as many blogs of a similar age that I’ve been involved in consulting with would expect 210% growth at a minimum.
The Raw Figures – Impressive?
My reading of the stats is that in December the top 10 newspapers blogs had 3.7 million visitors. That means on average these blogs had 370,000 visitors each – or 11935 visitors per day.
Now I know many ProBlogger readers would like 11935 visitors coming to their blogs each day – but keep in mind that these are the biggest newspapers in the US and that they’ve been blogging for over a year. Compare them to the biggest blogs going around and the figures are smaller than the 210% headline might indicate.
I’m also surprised that the numbers not bigger because the domains that many of these blogs are hosted on should generate some serious Google Juice for the blogs concerned. I know if I were to start up a blog on some of my established domains that they’d do pretty well in search engines fairly quickly.
Perhaps I’ve misread the study or am being overly cynical – but I’m a little less than impressed than some seem to be.
Don’t get me wrong – I think it’s great that such studies are done and I’m all in favor of mainstream media experimenting with blogging – I also think it’s great that they are seeing some success – but perhaps it’s not the headline news that some are reporting it as.