Here are the pageview stats for the last couple of weeks on my webfiction site Snake-Boy Loves Sky Prince:
It’s kind of hard to make out specific numbers, given that the August 8 spike sort of obscures everything else. Specific numbers aren’t very important to the question behind this post, but just to give you a way to get your bearings, the August 12 number (the first column after the spike to rise above the others) is 99, and the very next day, August 13 (the first weekend day on this chart), the number of pageviews dropped down to 39.
Ignore the spike. It came about because StumbleUpon went crazy one morning. 800+ pageviews happened on that day in the hour before 5am and then stopped immediately. It means nothing.
What you see here is that every week, the pageviews start out low (on the weekends, understandably), rise slightly every day through the week, then peak at around 100 on Friday. This weekly pattern seems to have no relationship to the days that I post. On that first week, for example, I skipped Thursday, but it was the second-most popular day of the week (discounting the spike). Likewise, the second week, I updated Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, but Wednesday and Thursday were much stronger than Monday and Tuesday.
I’m wondering what all of this means.
Here’s the subtext to my concern, which may have nothing at all to do with stats. I’m a little afraid that I’m breaking my story up into pieces that are too small, just to hit that near-daily update schedule (which, as you can see from the paragraph above, I’m not actually hitting anyway). One way to interpret these stats is that readers just come in once a week anyway, whatever day of the week that happens to be for them, and catch up on everything that they’ve missed. It would explain the consistency from week to week. There’s x number of Monday people, X+y number of Tuesday people, and so on. If most people are just coming once a week anyway, should I save everything up for one day, and post a deeper, more satisfying chunk of story? I’ve noticed that, especially during the opening, a couple of people who responded to the story, writing reviews or comments or whatever, seemed frustrated and confused by the events in the first few posts — a confusion that could have been caused by my poor writing, surely, but could also have been caused by the tiny bite-sized pieces that they were being fed; the things that were frustrating them were getting addressed, just not, in some cases, for several days.
It’s likely that I’m reading way too much into all of this. I just don’t know. I ask you. Tell me. What do you think should I do here?