Sunday, November 1, 2015

Traffic Up Despite Crazy Month

It hasn't been a great month at

Instead of seeing The Orion home page when they navigated to the website, visitors were greeted with the (bad) news that a database connection couldn't be made. Reloading (sometimes several times) allowed access to the home page and the rest of the website, but after hours of investigation, chats with the paper's hosting service and advice from some smart people, the problem persisted.

The site is a little better now, but it looks as if the paper will have to hire an outside tech to fix the site, which one repair company guessed was probably hacked.

The good news?

Even with all the hurdles, the audience still made its way to the website, which recorded its best traffic month all year.

The numbers:
65,347 individuals visited during October.
They viewed 241,216 pages during 642,405 visits (a respectable 2.66 pages per visit).
The number of unique visitors was a record.
The number of visits was greater than the total of all visits to the website in 2014.

Spambots, which left tens of thousands of junk comments on the website (now cleaned up), made more than 3 million visits to the site, though those are not counted in the traffic numbers provided by BlueHost, The Orion's web-hosting service.

Because of the attacks and hacks, the numbers don't necessarily represent legitimate traffic to the site. This month (November) things should settle down and get back to normal once the site is repaired.

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