Giving Thanks For My Fake Popularity

For unknown reasons, my blog spiked in readership…no, make that hits, on November 19th. Exactly 17 days after I published this post on head lice.

News Flash! If you want a lot of hits on your blog, write about head lice.

But 17 days later? It took that long for people to find my expert opinion on head lice?

Find me, they did. And I’ve never been more popular. But I know what is happening. People are Googling head lice images and intrigued by my picture, they end up clicking on my blog. All for this picture:

And it isn’t even a very good picture. I used that pic to illustrate how difficult the little buggers are to identify. But no matter. People have been clicking here anyway. Horrible picture and marginal writing and all.


But I haven’t gained any new readers from it. And I haven’t discovered any new bloggers.

Just hits.

Empty hits.

Lots and lots of empty hits.

I hope all you silent readers out there are gleaning valuable information. I hope none of you actually have head lice. Hopefully, you’re just educating yourselves. And that’s fine by me. I was a teacher, after all.

And while I know this new popularity is as empty as the hits I’m getting, I’m thankful anyway.

Even if it is fake popularity.


Filed under Blogging

6 responses to “Giving Thanks For My Fake Popularity

  1. Ha ha, fame at last! I have this quite a bit, my last post was my most popular ever. It certainly isn’t my best, in fact I was having a big temper tantrum, but there you go. Saying that, with all the extra viewings I didn’t gain one new reader and no extra comments. So now I’m sitting with a fake new number one which I feel will sit there forever, well unless I put a photo of a head lice on my blog!

  2. That’s weird! But then again, think of all the weird search words people find you with…

  3. Been there, done that. Once upon a time you blogged about music on your iPod or something like that. That gave me an idea to do a blog post about angry songs. It was basically a reblog before we ever had the reblog feature.

    That post turned out to be my all-time #1 post. Ever. I’d say about 33 percent of my all-time views came from that post. It’s already #3 for today and #2 for the last week. It even beats the post of mine that someone put on Reddit where I got almost 5,000 views in a single day. Only my home page beats it on the all-time list. And I owe it all to you. 🙂

    I theorize that the word combinations within the post cause it to rank very high for a certain phrase that people search for often enough. The right combination of phrasing, density and the uniqueness of the post gelled in just the right way to create this traffic phenomenon.

    Like you, though, I doubt many of the views are sticky and rarely become readers. If I had access to a report that showed “bounce rate” I’m sure the number would be very high.

    I’ve also noted the increase in views from Google Images, too. They recently made some changes to that feature. They might discuss your head lice, but I imagine that most of them are looking for the image itself and rarely stick around to read or otherwise participate on the blog.

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

  4. Chuckling at this one, Jane. I’ve had those days as well – wondering what on earth is making more people come to my site!

    As for your popularity on the subject of lice, let’s face it. Most parents have had to deal. The first time it’s a shocker (and stigmatized!), but after that, just another shrug and more annoying parental duty. But think of the service you’re providing to those first-timers!

    I’d say that’s REAL popularity. You’re meeting a market need.


  5. Update: I’ve been getting a lot of hits for my post about when I died in a helicopter crash. I researched a bit and found that the photo for that post ranks fairy high (page 2) for a Google Image Search for the phrase: helicopter crash. I even got a comment on the post recently, a year after it was posted. Like you said, it’s probably not target traffic (people who want to read my crappy blog) but it does keep the stats moving enough to excite me.

  6. I got my greatest number of hits when I posted photos of the American Idol concert in Portland this past July. The Google searches did it – then I discovered some of my pictures on Google Images. Woo hoo! My five seconds of fame!

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