I always thought it strange that bloggers would survey their readers with the intent to mold their blog to satisfy outside opinions. Like one of my survey respondents said, “I tend to think of websites (incl. blogs) as highly personal and a reflection of the mind behind them… Splendour Awaits is the product of your interests, knowledge and creativity.” However, as Splendour Awaits now also serves as a front for business, I thought I would give a survey a chance, to get a better idea of how the blog aligns with readers.
As the success of Facebook, Twitter and Google+ has grown, blog posts seem to be receiving less and less comments, so outside of bare stats (I get about a thousand visits per week) it is hard to know the level of involvement. From experience I know that a number of people who appreciate the blog, but, for various reasons, will never comment. The survey allowed me to get a better idea of the interests of the people who visit and if they were involved enough to check what the survey was about. 40 people connected to the post directly (while others may have found it through the Home page) but only 20 went on to complete the survey.
My analysis of the results?
- Thankfully, almost everyone appreciated the bug photography! The one exception both liked and disliked it…perhaps one of us is inconsistent…
- As for least liked posts, 15% of respondents didn’t like the “Weekly collection of links to entomology and macro photography articles” (a feature I dropped months ago) and another 15% didn’t like the few posts where I wax nostalgic. 35% didn’t dislike anything.
- No one offered suggestions on how to improve the blog, and a whopping 35% implied that it is satisfactory as is.
- 70% of respondents have noticed the menu bar, but only 50% have actually gone there.
- When not adequate (5%) or boring (5%), my writing is good (65%) with occasional doses of scintillating (10%), fun (5%) and brilliant (5%). At least one person was speechless. Thankfully, no one thought I needed more ‘F-words’ sprinkled about, because that is one thing I will not do on this child-friendly blog. (Besides which, there is only so many times that you can see F***le-d***le before it wears thin…)
- Most people don’t care that I have advertising, and the remaining 30% think that the advertising is useful. That’s good news!
- Suggestions for what people would like to see more frequently were varied. Leading the suggestions was more on photographic technique and photo-walk stories, with some requesting more on natural history (I’m working on that) and “less well-known invert groups” (which I would love to do, and need to spend more time searching and researching!) More videos were also requested, and that is something I have meant to do, and that I will work on this winter.
- Thankfully, no one dissed me on the donation button. Your understanding is appreciated.
- While the length of time people have visited this blog ranged from ‘first time’ to ‘forever’, it was interesting that, while visits from the US outnumber Canada 2:1, almost 50% of the survey respondents were Canadian, and only 20% were willing to admit they were from the US. There was also responses from Australia and Thailand.
So do these results add up to influencing any changes to the blog?
Yes, a few…
- 5% of responders thought I needed more cow-bells, so I will be launching a Kickstarter campaign to fund a trip to Switzerland forthwith.
- The same 5% wanted less about Argyle socks, so I now promise that, when posting on socks, they will be Anything But Argyle.
Seriously though, while no major changes will take place, my direction is now is clearer. Thanks, all those who took the time to contribute, and a special thanks to those who left extra comments (and more), I do appreciate it!