“And I would like to thank my readers…” Open Parachute blog stats and more

First of the month.  It’s the day we look at our stats again.  And we get a chance to celebrate our successes and learn from any mistakes.  If you’re not into navel gazing blog posts that look at the numbers behind the blog, then this is the executive summary:  Still number One and most stats are about 10% up over last month.  Thanks, see you June 1st.

When you are at the top of your game, and nobody else is performing close enough to you to give you a run for your money, it is essential you are self-driven.  Last month I outlined the difference between the Open Parachute rankings, and our Google Analytics numbers, and for those keeping track, our numbers for the Open Parachute leader board came out at about 1.25 million pageviews for April 2013 – about 124,000 pageviews more than last  month.

But our Google Analytics numbers put us just shy of 2.5 million, and as discussed, those are the real numbers as far as we’re concerned.  But pageviews are only part of the picture.  To get genuine growth, you need more people to visit the blog.

Last month we had 89,102 unique visitors, and I said we would like to drive that up to 100,000.  That would require about 12% growth, and nobody was expecting that to happen in one month.  And it didn’t.  But we got close.  Google Analytics reports we had 98,896 unique visitors – a spectacular 11% growth in just one month.

Here are our Google Analytics stats for April 2013.  This should be specifically exciting to anyone thinking of using WOBH for their advertising, promotions or sponsored products.  Yes, it costs real money to run the largest blog in the country, and you can show your support as well as gain benefit for your product or service from our substantial audience.  You may have missed the latest research showing that Blogs outrank Social Networks like Twitter and Facebook when it comes to purchasing decisions.  (source)



The stats above report April vs March 2013, and the percentage change between those months.  As you can see, it reads like a dream.  Not only do our readers visit the blog frequently, they spend a considerable amount of time reading its content.

If we can sustain the 2.08% growth in new visits we recorded this month, then it tracks to about a 25% growth for the year.  That will make us really happy if we can achieve that.

The “Bounce Rate” is a bit of magic too.  It shows that of 100 people that visit the blog, 99 read more than one page.  It means that most people that visit Whale Oil Beef Hooked genuinely intended to visit it. They weren’t tricked. They didn’t just arrive at the page they were looking for and left again.  Once they arrive, they read the blog.

Our “Pages per visit” went up modestly too, with the average visitor reading about 6 pages before they leave.

The community that makes up this blog is also getting more enthusiastic and dedicated.  We’ve seen a steady increase in participation from more and more people jumping in and sharing their knowledge or opinion on several topics.  And the Tipline just keeps on keeping on with feedback, ideas, bad parking and those ever important ‘secrets’.

People who don’t believe that well-run and hard working blogs aren’t setting the standards for media growth should ask TV, radio, newspapers and magazines if they are enjoying growth like this:


These are our stats for the last six months



We delivered 10 million pages to almost half a million people over the last six months.

Cam, Travis and I, continue to be grateful for your patronage.  We are really happy that you like what we do here.  And you can be assured that instead of resting on our laurels, we’re continuously looking at improving even more.

So thank you.  It’s getting a little repetitive to say it, but it doesn’t make it any less true:  We are genuinely grateful that you choose to spend your time with us.

Oh, and here are the Open Parachute blog rankings, for those that like to see where the other blogs ended up.


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  • Jman

    I think your page views are being artificially exaggerated by you having the “Read More” option for every post. Instead of being able to load the page and simply read through the blog posts as one would on any other blog, on this one, for every post that looks interesting one has to click the “Read more” option. Each time this gives you one more page view.

    I find this highly annoying and frankly I would have left long ago because of it, but you do manage to keep the content interesting enough that I keep coming back. Still I really wish you would ditch the “Read more” BS. I should only need to click into the post if I want to comment on it.

    • Dave

      What next Jman, just think how the MSM do it, a headline, a short tease and then click to read the entire story. If WOBH had to put the entire story on every page, the main page would be bloody huge and take forever to load at NZ internet speeds. Me, I read the short summary at the side and right click to open the pages that interest me, and read!! Easy Peasy!!

      • Travis Poulson

        There’s just no pleasing everyone, an impossible task. Like this guy last night:

        A nonny mouse • 21 hours ago
        −Videos are interesting and all that, but if I wanted to watch irrelevant videos I’d go to youtube…

        But what can you do, just keep on doing things the way you want to. It is a technical impossibility to cater to the exact needs of every person, and well, they don’t pay to read it. So stiff shit I say. The people that want to read it will, the ones that don’t…well who gives a shit about them anyway. People still complain even when they get something for free, but I have a response to that:

        • WayneO

          Run a poll. I’m not a huge fan of the “read more” feature – especially when I use my phone browser as opening new windows is a pain in the arse.

          Agree that’s it’s impossible to please everyone but a somewhat democratic reader vote would help, yes?

          • Sorry, did you mistake this blog for a democracy?

          • Kacanga

            I just can’t stop laughing!!!!!

      • Jman

        Dave, this is a blog, not an online newspaper. Completely different format so your comparison is invalid.

        Regarding your point about the page being huge, firstly every other blog I can think of seems to manage that just fine and secondly this blog only fairly recently started using the “Read more” thing, so it worked fine all the years before that.

        The only reason I can think for the “Read more” thing is to artificially exaggerate page view stats. What other reason is there? Lets hear it? Is there anyone who actually likes it? (as opposed to simply having gotten used to it and learning to put up with it?)

        • Kacanga

          I didn’t like it at first, now I actually prefer it. It’s a chance to give the topic a quick look-over, then click “Read more” or just flick past. Better than having to scroll at great lengths past every single long topic.

        • Bunswalla

          Let’s put this another way. If you don’t like it – fuck off. That way you’ll avoid being annoyed and be happy that you’re not contributing to the No 1 blog in the country finagling it’s way to the top. Even though it’s been there for yonks before the format change.

          • Jman

            Fuck off yourself. I said in my first post that I consider the content of this blog interesting enough to keep reading it. I will also give my opinion on whatever I like, including the format of the blog. If everyone was just a cock-sucking fanboy like you then the sites administrators would never get any constructive feedback.

        • Dave

          “Every other Blog” well, i know most other blogs DONT publish 30 posts a day, so naturally their main page is going to be a lot smaller. For me though Jman, the changes work, its easy to skim read, then one simple click to read the full article, and to comment.

          • Jman

            Sorry but you’re simply being ridiculous. There is no way a rational person can think that having to click and load a new page for every post is somehow more efficient or user friendly than having all the content on a single page. I don’t need to hear from any more fanboys about how much they love it. All you’re doing is blowing smoke up Whales ass.

            I notice also that no-one has disputed my accusation that it’s real purpose is to artificially inflate the page view stats. I will take that as tacit acknowledgement that I am correct.

          • Bunswalla

            And what the fuck would you know about what a rational person might or might not think?

            It pays to at least speak from a position of basic knowledge of the subject, so you’ve disqualified yourself immediately, you twat.

          • Jman

            I already told you to fuck off you buffoon. You may come back and try again when you have an actual argument or idea rather than just swearing and bluster. Until then, continue sucking the admins cock.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      It would kill if you could inline expand articles, I agree. but i got used to the change pretty quick

    • i cant speak for anyone else but to be perfectly honest i look at LESS since the read more thing. i guess im just lazy with my reading.

      i go “brah brah brah brah…read more…nah. fuck it. no time for that….nek article”

  • Troy

    Well done Cam & team… and of course the assembled Whale Army ;)

    • blokeintakapuna

      Comment of the day!

      Go the Army… And the All Blacks!

    • owl

      Lol WOBH did you get my timesheet? Well done and thanks for allowing me write my observations

      • Bunswalla

        Yes he got your timesheet and said to tell you that you’re doing so well he’s prepared to DOUBLE your pay. Gotta be happy with that.

        • owl

          Lol..I am getting paid via novopay and Helen Kelly is reviewing my hourly rate. Apparently I get paid in cash when wobh new photocopier arrives.

          • owl

            To all..I don’t get paid..have never sort or seeked and only observe on wobh. I can thank cam for utilizing my observations…I do it because Helen Kelly and Gary Parsloe invited me as a person to support their causes through social media. I discovered they weren’t being honest on their union finances. I like to think via wobh I have been able to keep the unions honest for the sake of the members who I feel really sorry for..always have

          • You have. And I also think you should make sure you don’t take your foot off their throats.

  • Dave

    A sincere congratulations to Cam Pete and Travis, and of course others (Mrs Whale included) Also like to acknowledge the huge work and effort Cam puts in, especially given his other paid work. Am very impressed Cam!!

  • tarkwin

    Well done guys, running an honest straight up blog brings in intelligent people you can learn from and have a decent discussion and a whole lot of fun with – cheers.

  • GregM

    Great job Cam and the team, thanks for keeping it real. Awesome.

    • Travis Poulson

      And thank you too Greg, for putting that damn song into my head repeating over and over and over all damn day….

      doo daa, doo daa….

    • Thanks, couldn’t do it without the readers and commenters…actually I could but it wouldn’t be nearly so much fun

  • PlanetOrphan

    The open parachute link is broken.

    Great work guys, keep it up and the 25% is definitely on the cards.

  • cows4me

    Good on you guys, don’t know how you do it, dedication I would say. As for the unique visitors, probably Len and the Browns dipping their toes in the shit, would be very depressing, oh dear, how sad never mind.

  • yeah well im a total addict.

  • Lion_ess

    Great job guys.

  • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

    Well done WO and his loyal army. Expose the communists and the hippies. Never ever allow them to get near power in 2014. All the hard work being done by Naked Emperor and his useless bunch of cronies will be wiped out within a month.

  • Kacanga

    You have changed my information collecting habits.
    I used to come home, read the paper, and watch the news on TV and get really pissed off.
    Now I sit down with my iPad, log into WOBH, get a roundup of items of interest, and usually get some laughs as well.
    Instead of yelling at the TV Or screwing up the paper in disgust at the slanted crap they serve up, I can have my say or indicate my approval/disapproval with a touch of my finger. It doesn’t matter if anyone reads my comments or not, it’s therapeutic just writing them down.
    Thanks to you I’m actually a lot more cheerful nowadays.

    • maninblack

      awesome- great stuff Kacanga.

  • Bunswalla

    You’re still welcome.