I know that I should click bait people with a title like “do this 1 thing for bigger views,” but no, I’ll bluntly tell you, better homepage, bigger hits, far bigger hits. I’ve been experimenting with WordPress themes for the SEO and to see the recommendations at the bottom. A month or so ago I changed back to the default 2015 template and my searches went big. Well a week ago, I changed to a theme that I like a lot better, because it looks better, but people can now find things! The default template shows your full articles. That becomes daunting to read, so while it gets the SEO and Google seems to love it, humans don’t.
Looking at the new stats, you can see I jumped from about 35 – 45 per day to a whopping 150 – 350 views per day all while maintaining the same amount of 30 – 35 visitors. That’s averages about 10 views for every visitor. I’m not even forcing people to click my articles from the reader. People can now easily find content that they want even if my site is a review site and no one actually wants to read reviews so much as “like” them.
My specific homepage is just photos. A giant grid of photos. Less text, more things fit onto the page. Its a beautiful theme for video games, photography movies or anything that can have photos to get interest. You’d think if its more on the homepage, then why not just have article headlines in a grid formation. More articles would fit that way yes, but people love pictures more than they enjoy reading. Sure there’s an exception to every rule, but this is a visual medium. Heck some people are using WordPress to post their Youtube videos… instead of writing. That’s what the Internet has become, “look at this.”
There’s another catch to these stats. Its the scroll factor. The more you scroll, the more it counts as a view. WordPress is designed to continuously load new content rather than having people click new content. With thirteen years of reviews (10 years of lazy quick reviews), I’ve got 550 articles worth of content so that makes for a lot of scrolling. The more content on the homepage, the more likely people will scroll and scroll and scroll. One person can accumulate 25 views on the homepage alone.
Then it becomes a matter of looking at the article stats to see if people can see more articles that may catch their interest do they actually click to read? Yes they do. One person will click more articles, because they can find something that interest them. One thing that doesn’t interest people is Desura reviews. Games no one will ever hear of let alone play. I’ve discovered based on likes that people love old school game reviews. They don’t read them, just like them, unless of course they read them in the reader. There are a few rare cases where games like Super Mario Land 2, Kung Fu and Gradius have scored a lot of views.
I’ve noticed that when something on my WordPress is “trending,” it continues to increase in views. I feel like some of the “trending” stuff is questionable. Somehow something with 3 views beats something with 6 views the previous day. When one person views an awful review from 13 years ago I know that more and more people will visit with no sort of evidence that it was linked from an external source. So I assume people are seeing it in the trending list and clicking it out of curiosity.