Do you keep stats on your blog? I've tried two different sites for tracking number of visitors, popular pages, etc. I'm currently using StatCounter, which gives wonderful graphics and maps to show me who is looking at the blog. The statistics site I used previously basically just told me total number of hits per day, but no detailed breakdown of who those viewers were.
What I am discovering with this new influx of info is that, although the number of visitors per day is growing, the vast majority of them are from random - and sometimes hilarious - Google searches. While it's nice to know that the subject variety of our blog is expanding so we are included in more search results, those hits are one-time visitors who either gathered the information they wanted and are never heard from again, or scratched their heads and wondered why in heck Google brought up THAT site.
Since the first post in October of 2009, this blog has morphed from strictly book reviews, book-related events, and a campaign to encourage reading together as a couple, to a stream-of-consciousness about my life, my frustrations, my celebrations and some books - it's my therapy. In spite of that transformation (or because of it?), the number of returning visitors has shown very little growth. Which brings me to my second question...
Do statistics matter? Do you write for yourself or to gain an audience? Do you have dreams of fame and a book deal? Or do you just want to make a few new friends? Ok, I know that was more than one question, but it all boils down to the same point. If a blog publishes but no one is reading, does it still make a sound?