A month on DreamCompute and increase in traffic

Confessions of the Professions is my pride and joy and my passion. It is a website dedicated to understanding jobs, careers, and the workplace. It is a place where people can come talk or rant about their boss if they had a bad day, or a place where they can come brag about that raise they just got. It is a site for everyone. It has yet to be featured on DreamHost’s site of the month hint hint, but it was born on DreamHost and has resided its entire life there too. I’m honored and I’d hope that DreamHost, even with its millions of customers, feels some honor for being the host of a semi- ever-increasing popular website. I’m sure I’m certainly not the only one, either.

I recently made the switch to DreamCompute and I have no regrets at all. Take a look at this:

Traffic Before and After DreamCompute to Confessions of the Professions

  • Where the red mark is about the time when the switch was made.

Google Webmaster Index

  • Google Note:
    [i]November 20, 2016
    Internal index updates. These changes should have a minimal affect on end users.

May 15, 2016
A data anomaly caused a dip in the data on this day.

February 5 and 8, 2016 (mobile apps only)
Internal index updates. These changes do not affect end users so you should see no change on impressions.[/i]

Nothing in Google’s notes really explains this sudden increase.

Jetpack shows the views that certain posts are getting and it does look like a different post each day is going viral. How and why? I’m not sure. I can’t trace the origins. Is it enough to explain those number spikes? Somewhat, but not exactly.

In the past, 1,000 views/visitors a day was common. Occasionally, I’d get a share somewhere on Facebook or Twitter and it would go viral and I’d get a spike in traffic, and 3,000 - 5,000 was the average of a spike with no problems. DreamPress handled it like a champ.

Ever since switching, however, and I’m not complaining at all – just observation: because it has always been my dream to get an insane amount of traffic, especially legitimate traffic, with authentic readers and commenters to my website, and it is happening. Yay.

I have a robots.txt file to block bad robots and I also have some configurations going on in htaccess to block bad robots and unwanted traffic. Google Analytics and Jetpack are my monitoring tools and the comparison between them shows some differences. I am not a huge fan of Google Analytics but I do keep it enabled just so I can get an idea of what Google knows.

So I get it that there could be a hundred different factors that could explain this traffic… I have Jetpack distribution enabled and I have a plugin that help distribute to Triberr, Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Facebook, and a bunch of RSS feeds. Every few months, Google changes their index and some of my articles tend to rank higher, and I publish articles that people may find interesting or share with their following. Some are more popular than others. Depending on what is going on in the world, like the unemployment rate, or popular job trends, or trends in what is being searched, can have an effect on my traffic.

And it would certainly be understandable if there were a spike in traffic, even if for a few days before it returned to normal, but the “traffic spike” has become my normal traffic and I can’t seem to figure out how or why, but the correlation is obvious: A switch to DreamCompute saw that increase in traffic. It may have been slightly rising before then, but not a crazy amount. It would always “settle”. Some days it was more. Some days it was less. It was not until that switch was made where the traffic just shot up.

Traffic has basically gone from 5,000 visitors a week to 20,000 to 30,000 and it seems to only be climbing with each passing day. I’m loving it! I just hope it really is authentic.

Maybe I’m just going crazy and this isn’t real at all. Maybe DreamHost is broken. Maybe DreamCompute is broken. Maybe Jetpack is broken. Maybe Google Analytics is broken. Maybe someone is hitting refresh on my website all day long. Maybe all the bots hitting the server are no longer blocked by the powers of the super DreamPress and are now physically hitting my website and being recorded as a visit. I don’t know.

The traffic is definitely welcome… I’m just confused as to why there is more now on DreamCompute than when I was on DreamPress.

Care to give your theory?

1 Like

Increased traffic is welcome and you’re asking the right questions here: one needs to know why that peak. I doubt the switch to DreamCompute has anything to do with it though… unless changing an IP address would make a difference for google.

I would suggest to dive deeper into your landing pages and your sources in Google Analytics: where is this traffic coming from and where is it going mainly? Are people finding your posts more often? Also, are you getting spam traffic with spam referrals? https://blog.kissmetrics.com/removing-google-analytics-referral-spam/ and https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1034842?hl=en can give you some suggestions on how to filter those out.

What else did you do when switching to DreamCompute? I see you don’t have SSL, so that can’t be (Google gives higher ranking to SSL-enabled domains) but maybe you optimized something, like a mobile-optimized theme? Faster rendering? These may influence Google Ranking.

Other things that influence ranking are external factors, like being quoted by important domains: did any of your article get mentioned by the New York Times? :slight_smile:

if all that checks, for unbelievable as it may look, maybe you’re running a successful blog :slight_smile: Would you like to give us a testimonial for DreamCompute?