Top Ten Sources

I took at look at Google Analytics this morning and was a bit surprised to see the makeup of the top ten sources of traffic to AVC in the past month.

Avc sources may 2012

If we compare this to May 2010, when AVC got almost exactly the same amount of visitors, you can see that the makeup of traffic has changed a fair bit.

Avc sources may 2010

Search, Twitter, Stumbleupon, Facebook, and Disqus have all risen a fair bit as sources. Direct, Feedburner, Hacker News, and various specific sites have waned as sources of traffic.

Mobile visits have also doubled in the past two years from 11% to 22%. Frankly I thought they would be even higher by now.

What this tells me is platforms are ascendent as drivers of audience, particularly platforms like Twitter that are optimized for mobile.

It is also nice to see Disqus cracking the top ten. And the characteristics of the Disqus traffic is very different from the traffic that comes from the other top ten sources. The Disqus audience stays longer and is way more engaged. That makes sense. I hope to see Disqus rise in the top ten as they do more to drive traffic around their network.

It makes me think that Disqus could use a mobile reading app that shows Disqus users the interesting conversations happening in their network in real time. I would certainly be a big user of that.

But no matter how you slice it, we are in the era of mobile platforms. That is pretty clear to me this morning.


Comments (Archived):

  1. William Mougayar

    Having Disqus on the list also caught my attention, and that’s a great validation point for the networked effects and importance of social conversations.Engagio is already showing you Popular Discussions from your friends in real-time (via email & dashboard), and it includes Disqus and non-Disqus sites. I know this has been a big hit for us recently judging by the un-solicited feedback I have received about it.

    1. awaldstein

      Yup, I’m a uses friends as context not topic as context though. Plans to enlarge you contextual discovery footprint?

      1. William Mougayar

        Yes, currently it’s friends-based and totally implicit, i.e. you don’t have to configure anything.Yes, we will expand into interests, topics or angles. Still gathering input on that part. And our mobile app is around the corner (Android/iPhone). It will include Popular content from your network.

        1. matthughes

          I submitted the Engagio survey the other day – hope it was helpful.

          1. William Mougayar

            Thanks Matthew…indeed. next week we’ll publish the results.

        2. Timothy Meade

          As for following topics, maybe add Quora to the list of supported networks? Also, I sent you and email with some ideas last night, not sure I have the right email address for you.

          1. William Mougayar

            Thanks Timothy. It was a very thoughtful email, and I’m going to respond to it. I appreciate your feedback and ideas a lot. Yes, Quora is on the list of supported networks, but they don’t have an official API yet.

          2. Abdallah Al-Hakim

            Quora would be a big opportunity because it contains great content but the dashboard and system for organizing the info is not intuitive. It would be immensely useful if I could view my Quora discussions on engagio. Good to know it is on engagio’s radar

      2. ErikSchwartz

        I’m a user too. William and team are closer to cracking the social discovery nut than anyone else I know of. Awesome progress.

        1. ShanaC

          Sort of – I need to make more fashion friends, as none of you will help me discover dresses :p

          1. ErikSchwartz

            I can certainly be of no assitance there.

          2. ShanaC

            actually, IRL I have a tendency to wear men’s collared shirts as tunics, so theoretically you could help.

          3. panterosa,

            #needmorechicksonAVC 😉

          4. ShanaC

            or more who are willing to comment on fashion sites 😛

          5. panterosa,

            Shana, you know I am a stylist, amongst many other thing, right? Interiors, dress, and branding. I get people word of mouth or who have seen my work. Many people just ask outright to have me do their place/wardrobe/brand look having seen what I do for others.I don’t do ‘sites’. If interested, ping me.

          6. ShanaC

            when I have the money, definitely 🙂

          7. Emily Merkle

            I am always willing to comment on fashion! Bring it!

          8. Emily Merkle

            fashion chick here! can I help?

          9. ShanaC


          10. Emily Merkle

            give me guidance – summer dresses? Day wear? Sexy? night out?

          11. ShanaC

            uhh, work clothing that is more interesting than “pretending to be guy business casual”

          12. Emily Merkle

            am a big fan of Diane Von Furstenberg. The wrap dresses, especially are classic, timeless.

    2. andyidsinga

      William – just reading this post and seeing disqus .. I was wonder how it would show up in Fred’s statis if I came in via engagio via a disqus comment..[edit: i.e. by specifically clicking on the engagio “view” button for a particular disqus thread that pointed back to avc]

      1. William Mougayar

        If you click on View in Engagio, it sends you to the AVC blog post or thread directly, so Engagio would show as the referral source. Same if you clicked on the Most Popular articles from your friends where we send you straight to the blog itself. Engagio is probably way down on the referral list for AVC because the Popular Discussions email is only about 2 weeks old and our usage numbers have taken an uptick in the past 2-3 weeks. But I suspect we could be in the top 10 over time.

    3. VincentWright

      Just signing up as a new user. By the way, William: I mistakenly went to as a result of typing the first part of Engagio into a Google search…(FYI: indicates “launching soon in January 2011…)

      1. William Mougayar

        Thanks. I’ll have to check on that other domain.

      2. falicon

        I don’t think William owns (with the e towards the end)…I think his variations are and http://engagio.comThis is the frustrating part of domain names (it can quickly get expensive trying to capture all variations; and confusing for people if/when you don’t)

        1. awaldstein

          A whole other huge topic.Domains are a nightmare to find. More and more of us are using wacko variations and I’m wondering how much it matters.Most everything I find is referred. I type in names rarely.I”m sure someone here has strong opinions to the contrary on this.

          1. falicon

            Agree…I own something like 80+ domains, and I have never paid above ‘cost’ for any of them for any of my projects…if I can’t get an obvious name for a project I want to do, or some solid related word, I prefer to just create an entirely new name or word and try to get that to catch on. Just gotta make it easy and memorable…and then let the software/service be the real hook to capture engagement. 😉

          2. awaldstein

            That’s best. You have a knack for this though. Not everyone does.

          3. awaldstein

            Disagree…don’t see yourself short.You know the old hack that if you tied a monkey to a typewriter for a thousand years it would write the complete works of Shakespeare.Not true, Not just any monkey!

          4. falicon


          5. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

            Poor Shakespeare 🙂 …. but I like the ‘Not just any monkey’.Edit: I just remembered a local say about a great poet … actually it goes other way around….it goes something like this …Shakespeare’s cat also can write poems.It is about praising the poet …. if you just be around him for a while you learn to write poems.

          6. Vasudev Ram

            Speaking of Shakespeare’s cat – hope some people have heard the joke about Einstein and his driver. Hilarious (IMO). I’ll let you all Google for it (exercise for the reader 🙂

          7. Mark Essel

            “Not just any monkey”Hehehe, well said.

          8. Dan Brown

            instant thesaurus + domain_check =

          9. Dale Allyn

            I’ll bite. I have an opinion, 😉 though not necessarily in contradiction.I agree that domains are a nightmare at times; and also agree with your support of @falicon:disqus ‘s knack for leveraging the thesaurus and his wit.Like Kevin (Falicon) I hold dozens of domains for various projects. Maybe 60 or 70. For our main project, we have a pretty simple to understand name, short, makes sense for our core mission, etc. And we also have secured 15 or so possible misspellings of the name. One of my concerns in naming is always the idea of sharing a business name (and domain name) when on an airplane, in an elevator, over the telephone, in a television interview, on the news, etc. Does it communicate easily? and do possible “misses”, including typos, redirect to your brand?Perhaps many (most?) people use the search input instead of the address bar of their browser to find a web location, but searches often return “close, but not correct” results, so better to cover all the bases if possible. It’s not always possible, but worth exploring.I’m not suggesting we disagree, Arnold. I just felt like expanding on the chat.

          10. falicon

            There’s also the issue of making sure no other companies/projects are close to your name so as to avoid potential legal issues … like this ->

          11. Dale Allyn

            Exactly. One should budget for legal searches in fact. Services like Thompson-Reuters should be considered, etc. for projects appropriate for such.

          12. Dale Allyn

            Kevin, I read Brian’s entire post and the comments. That’s such a crappy situation. It appears he’s being bullied and if he were an operating business with funds for legal services I suspect that this would not have come up. Of course, I don’t know the start dates of the projects, and other pertinent details, but it sure looks like intimidation technique on the surface. Thanks for the link.Edit to add: After reading a bit more, as if often the case, there are possible extenuating factors and it seems that Brian may not be “lilly white” in at least parts of how the issue was handled. That said, the advice to make sure no other companies or projects are too close to your own is solid advice.

          13. Kirsten Lambertsen

            Did you read thru the all the comments on that post? It’s pretty complicated and has to do with a lot more than just name similarity.

          14. awaldstein

            Really useful comment Dale.You are correct and your way is the smart and prudent one for certain.Naming is a bear. Of all the things I do, this process is the most challenging, the most painful and requires the most compromise.I remind myself and my clients always that no names are born great. Some are better than others but all are what we make of them.I just found an old post on this and it still rings mostly true: for this!

          15. Dale Allyn

            You’re absolutely correct that great names are made, not born. “Google” could have been urban slang for a leaky ointment tube, but today it’s a verb that everyone knows. The “iPad” had some serious issues in terms of naming, at least for some, but look at it now. I hated the name, but have none of the weird feelings about it I had when I first heard it. Building great things is not as simple as sitting in our kitchen and spouting a clever name – it’s work.

          16. Matt A. Myers

            I think most people type company names into Google or other search engines, and typos will therefore (should) show the proper company name at the type of the result; Some people may type by default when first looking.Similarly what I reply to Arnold, the brand needs to be fluid in thought / communication so it will integrate with the person, and be shared easily.There are other subtleties in language that suggest or infer certain things, create certain feelings, etc.. You really need to know what you’re going for. Most of the time it might not matter – but something I tell people often to the importance of brand is that if you have two identical services, the one with the better brand/brand name will win out.

          17. Dale Allyn

            No argument, Matthew, but part of what I refer to also includes the notion that google or other search engine correcting for typos does not protect against the algorithm “assuming” incorrectly. There will likely be spelling variances similar to yours which have nothing to do with your brand or service. I suggest trying to own as many obvious variants as possible. And of course, SEO will affect the suggested spell corrections, so that should be taken into account for the product design as well.

          18. Matt A. Myers

            I understand what you mean. There certainly can be phonetic variations of a brand name.

          19. ShanaC

            Something not seen hee: How much is random referral traffic- Fred, what is that number?

          20. fredwilson

            Relatively small

          21. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

            I think it will be significant on controversial topics.

          22. Matt A. Myers

            It has to be good enough to infer a relationship to the topic / function, and fluidly integrate into thought / conversation.

        2. VincentWright

          Thanks, falicon… Just to be clear: I didn’t think that was owned by William….just wanted to bring the matter of what I experienced, to his attention…

      3. William Mougayar

        Btw feel free to take this super short survey on the State of Online Conversations , and looking forward to your feedback using @engagio on our blog or by emailing me directly.

        1. VincentWright

          I’m not a big fan of surveys but, since I’m already starting to have fan-like feeling for, I’ve completed the requested survey….(If it’d be of help, I’d be more than happy to have a phone call mid-week…)

          1. William Mougayar

            Thanks Vincent. I will follow-up with you via email.

        2. panterosa,

          I took the survey. I was a bit peeved that the ‘highest’ and lowest were reversed income cases. Just a bit of complaint on unnecessary switching of the left/right and yes/no scales.But happy to add data points for sure!

          1. William Mougayar

            You’re right. We had other similar feedback, but I couldn’t change the order after the survey was launched. Thanks for taking the time!

    4. Kirsten Lambertsen

      It would be really cool to have Engagio as a Skype-like presence on my desktop/smartphone. I think a lot of people are at the same point that I am, making engagement (both online and off) a top priority and worthy of a persistent app. Email is pretty good for alerts, but it would be so cool to be able to respond to *any* comment thread from a Skype-like environment :0)I love Engagio, as you know 🙂

      1. William Mougayar

        Thanks. I’ll connect with you to discuss.

  2. Rurik Bradbury

    I wonder if it is increasing use of Chrome, which may count typing ‘AVC’ into the search bar as an organic referral?

    1. fredwilson

      Hmm. Very interesting

    2. Kirsten Lambertsen

      I was wondering if my MiFi (connected to my laptop) shows up as a mobile visit.

  3. awaldstein

    ‘Disqus could use a mobile reading app that shows Disqus users the interesting conversations happening in their network in real time’Discovery is the nut to crack. Mobile or not, this is a hit.

    1. Prokofy

      You know I have to say although I know the geeks will sneer that the new social media thing by Microsoft called really speeds up that discovery thing. It’s a huge shower of discovery.

    2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      Tell me your friends I will tell who you are … can be re-framed to tell me your friends and people you follow I will tell you who you are.I am not too sure discovery can go beyond people … by people i mean ‘ friends, foes and random people you follow’. It is going to be really hard for machine to discover a conversation (may be from number of likes or replies or number of comments and not beyond that)….so it is just not a ‘nut’ to crack it is ‘toughest nut’ to crack :-).As an example I find one of the comment says ‘glasses’ just ‘glasses’ … can a computer expand the meaning behind that? Is there a conversation there?

      1. awaldstein

        Parsing social comments is really hard…but no one said that creating a serendipity engine was easy,For me, just connecting me to people through conversations is a huge step beyond explicit Qs and As. But really, we want what we aren’t looking for yet. Cracking implicit recommendations is key.

  4. kidmercury

    1. javascript analytics. people act like their infallible……lol. tv might be more accurate.2. we’re in the era of mobile platforms — if you’re a cutting edge VC who invests in mobile platforms. i think other destinations will tell a different story. i’m very interested to see how mobile evolves now that bubble 2.0 is popping. i think a slow down period in mobile is coming in the west. looking forward to the kindle and facebook smartphones, and how they impact app business models and app distribution relative to the existing paradigm, as well as how the spectrum crunch affects mobile usage. spectrum issues are becoming my favorite to dwell on because of how important they are and how much they are ignored. might be up there with 9/11.

    1. kidmercury

      just saw this over on the new york times (… ) that i wanted to share. i think peak spectrum will affect mobile first, and then the whole internet if it is not dealt with. as usual it is all a governance problem.David Pogue, New York Times tech columnistWhat tech problem needs to be addressed most urgently?”That we’re heading for a bandwidth crunch. We’re saddling the Internet with amazing new features — movies on demand, streaming TV, Siri voice recognition, whole-house backup — but they’re starting to overwhelm the existing Internet’s capacity, especially on cellular networks. The Internet and phone companies respond by imposing monthly limits, and the F.C.C. is trying to make more wireless frequencies available. But unless something gives, “high-speed Internet” will soon become an oxymoron. You’ll just have to get used to pauses in your streaming video.”

      1. fredwilson

        Deregulate spectrum!!

        1. kidmercury

          #occupyspectrum #spectrumspring #spectrumparty

          1. andyidsinga

            Whoah .. I just noticed a freaky thing ..Freds and your responses on this thread appeared in engagio before they appears on the browser tab next door showing avc & disqus comments!! …I guess its the wonder of asynchronous transactions on the web 🙂

    2. andyidsinga

      which other destinations ..and which story?

      1. kidmercury

        i mean other sites that are not catered towards early adopters, like AVC clearly is. for instance, consider bulletin boards. like this one:…they are easier to read on a big screen, and if you are a participant, a keyboard helps greatly. i don’t doubt that all of this stuff will eventually transition to mobile, only that some stuff moves faster than others — perhaps much faster.

        1. andyidsinga

          Got it.been dreaming about the time when my mobile device can seamlessly be sat beside a keyboard and large screen and I can just is as my “main” device. The big screen is still really important .. reason I still love using my laptop (which connected to an even bigger screen).

        2. andyidsinga

          fwiw on the big screen side ..mixing and mashing with mobile …<bragging> here’s a “smart display” device we built at work a while ago. That dock on the bottom is connected to a device (pc) via VGA and acts as the primary display. When the device is lifted from the dock it becomes a wireless display using a remote desktop protocol to continue to view the PC’s display output. I still would love to have something like this for my android phone :)…</bragging>

          1. Dale Allyn

            That’s pretty cool, Andy. It would be very nice to have such a device in a fully portable (i.e. phone) device. Congrats, and thanks for bragging!

          2. Dale Allyn

            😉 Time for Kickstarter.

    3. Timothy Meade

      Spectrum scarcity is artificial, it really comes down to a few things:1. The devices only work on a limited portion of the spectrum because of physical limitations in the radios, how many antenna switch positions there are, how many antennas tuned for specific bands and other specific things about the IF. iPhone 4 and some Nokia phones are really the only ones working on more than a few bands.2. The acutal air interface used on the band doesn’t matter, it can be LTE/WCDMA/GSM etc. this can be fixed through firmware with a modern baseband chipset and is not much of a limitation on what the phone can do.3. The current split between Verizon LTE and AT&T LTE is that both need different legacy fallbacks, meaning more bands in addition to the shared LTE bands.4. I believe T-Mobile is wrong to challenge Verizon over using the AWS bands for LTE, this would seem to me to be in T-Mobile’s best interest as it solves the last and most important problem.5. Given all of the above, the real limitation is in ecomonmies of scale, the phone producers are not going to build handsets for carriers using non-standard bands, so the best phones are not going to be available to those carriers. Each small carrier should be doing judo and encouraging the larger carriers to share a band with them. The jostling going on right now makes a little sense and I think the outcome will be better for the smaller carriers than they expect.And very last, there’s a band that we share with Europe and so is already in all the devices, but we use it for analog cordless phones. I’m not getting why we haven’t done a massive DTV-style buyback on this legacy band and put it to good use.

      1. kidmercury

        i agree it is artificial. proper software should be able to block out interference so that multiple radios can use the same frequency. i fear we are so far behind in terms of actually solving this problem — people, even tech savvy people, don’t know or care about the issue, let alone have the political will to do something about it — that it is going to be a big issue sooner rather than later. wifi in nyc is already embarrassing. gotta go landline, although even that is only a temporary fix.

    4. Dave W Baldwin

      Something else Kid- Google doing the Motorola where it is probably a given they will manufacture their own phones.

  5. MartinEdic

    One major flaw. I have A VC bookmarked and go there via the bookmark. That would only show the source as whatever site I happened to be on prior, typically Daring Fireball, but only because it happens to be prior on my daily reading bookmark list.Analytics are like statistics. Very easy to draw erroneous conclusions without understanding the behavior pattern people use for sites they visit frequently.

    1. JimHirshfield

      Are you sure that’s how bookmark referral works?

      1. MartinEdic

        Good question. I can test it on one of my sites. My point might be that I’d guess that most of Fred’s traffic comes from regular readers, not from referrals from other sites…

    2. Matt Busche

      pretty sure that qualifies as a direct link and not a referral.

      1. falicon

        correct.Though I think it’s also cookie based, so if you got to the site via a link in the past X days or so, and then go back direct (or via bookmarklet) it continues to count as a return visitor via the source (ie. not direct).

      2. Emily Merkle


  6. Wells Baum

    Amazing how Twitter is your routing device but you hardly engage on the platform. I’m sure Seth Godin sees the same impact without aggressively using Twitter but broadcasting his posts there. Again, Twitter as just a router.Are you thinking about posting on your Facebook fan page more actively? This may not be a bad idea since FB will appear natively on iOS 6.I need to look into news.ycombinator. I’m wondering if the community here can tell me why that’s such a huge driver.

    1. fredwilson

      i engage regularly on twitter!/fred…

  7. Anne Libby

    I saw a great talk maybe 3 years back at Google by Katrin Verclas from many users at the “bottom of the pyramid” are, and will be, mobile-only. Today, many of my friends and colleagues here in NYC may as well be mobile-only.

  8. Guest

    “But no matter how you slice it, we are in the era of mobile platforms. That is pretty clear to me this morning.”Yep, but we need to know what’s coming next to make the big bucks.I think we are entering the end of the era of mobile. I’m not saying mobile devices are going away but mobile is starting to be taken for granted. Everyone still has their nose on their phone all day. But it’s like with the stock market when everyone and their friends are starting to buy stocks, it marks the beginning of the end. Not the end of the stock market but the end of the current frenzy.So, we have to discover what is the next big thing. Of course we’ll be laughed at and ridiculed for talking about it. But, that’s how we get in on the ground floor and sit back while others work to make us money. Any thoughts?

    1. fredwilson


      1. Guest

        I don’t get your point, Fred? Are you saying the next big thing is obvious but I don’t see it?

  9. matthughes

    Would love to see Disqus become more mobile friendly.(he said typing on his iPhone connected to wifi after opening avc via mobile safari bookmark)

    1. obscurelyfamous

      What are some of the problems? Mobile improvements in the pipe — just want to get your personal take.

      1. Mark Essel

        I’d love rapid response, and non fuzzy text (maybe native). It’s what I appreciate in text editors as well.Is 500,000 comments a day revealing anything surprising. Like the connections between commenting communities?How many active users (weekly) are on Disqus now? 3-4million (assuming that 500k # I read was correct and many commenters are unique which is optimistic for network size).

      2. matthughes

        It’s not so much a problem as it is using Disqus on mobile is just cumbersome.I would love to see the Dashboard show up similar to Twitter or Gmail for iphone. Like a traditional, albeit streamlined for mobile inbox.I know my engagement level on Disqus would increase quite a bit if replying, voting and generally reading was more accessible on mobile this way.I’m sure this applies to other platforms besides iOS.Disqus is awesome, keep up the good work. 🙂

  10. Bill Phelan

    As we spend quite a bit of time in Google Analytics, I can pretty much assure you your bounce rate statistics are pretty far off. GA has tools available for you to better measure engagement. Take a look at their measurement of scrolling through an article, for example. I will bet you anything that your real bounce rate is sub 20 percent.

    1. alanmcgee

      The bounce rates are likely accurate, GA defines as a single-page visit and most blogs are single-page viewings. To your point, there are certainly more interesting analytics customizations to trigger events such as reading to end of article, reading comments, etc.

      1. Timothy Meade

        I would think as Disqus delay loads only when you scroll to it, that it would provide better statistics of how long somebody was reading a page. Is it possible to signal this to GA through the js API?

  11. James Ferguson @kWIQly

    I promised @wmougayar I would give a try and then acknowledge my thoughts.This sources issue that Fred raises is exactly the point of Disqus and to me.Yes I tweet occasionally, but I actively USE disqus, avc and as a desk-bound jolt of social coffee between bursts of work.Compare things that #trend in twitter and what is “trending” in your network. Only one has an “ego-context” and like it or not we like what we like.For the record – I like Disqus and, and avc is the “place where I most engage” – why ?Probably because of the people and what they do to my head !Thank you all.

    1. William Mougayar

      Thanks James. Great feedback. I just followed you on Engagio and revealed my email to you.

      1. James Ferguson @kWIQly

        William – thanks very much – as things occur to me I will mention them.There follows a bit of an essay – sorry !It does strike me is that a social graph showing social distance clusters by some “two-hop” link density as a distance metric could be a powerful tool for visualization eg using a tool like (there are many).The point – although the mathematics of clustering and feature extraction are truly sublime, the “common man” is equipped to interpret visualizations without training – When you can see a bunch of grapes on the vine you identify a cluster and understand if it is – “low hanging fruit”. LinkedIn offers “how many people are 1,2,3 links away from you” but miss the point, they pander to ego, but do not serve. There are millions of people two links away and so they are noise, but a visualization can highlight effective subtle and “me-centric” conduits to reach those millions. To illustrate this. if someone really , really wanted to pitch USV, wouldn’t AVC be great place for them to become known (if prepared to make genuine social investment). NB don’t worry Fred – I have far more Machiavellian plans for you :)AVC would be a centroid of such clusters types. Perhaps not describable as a “maven” – AVC does provide a place that mavens come to ” feed” – this is itself a maven-like behaviour – so aposteriori perhaps AVC is a meta-maven ! I would argue that though Fred has never to my knowledge deliberately pointed me out to anyone, he arguably does this as he responds to my thoughts, and just as I flag my interest in you by writing this, Fred facilitates my doing so). His blog entries are thus chumming to waters to encourage the intellectual feeding-frenzies that result.Here is the question – is not a blogger and blog commentary thus implicitly maven-like ?I suspect apparently serendipitous events arise in such neighbourhoods – And this makes them cool places to stop by.This form of social discovery “self-actualizes” at two levels – engaging actively improves a) your sense of fit in a particular community and b) subtley modifies the community through elective engagement to suit you. As clothes age they become more comfortable.Would it not be surprising if AVC residents (and those of other blogs) – Both the “usual suspects” and like-minded visitors did not “feel at home” in a place where they behave “at home”? – If so can facilitate this process.

    2. obscurelyfamous

      I like that answer for the question of why someone is active on any niche community:”Probably because of the people and what they do to my head !”

      1. James Ferguson @kWIQly

        And I, Daniel, like the fact that you bothered to acknowledge it ! – In a few minutes I will find pointers to who you are. You picque my interest – and that is why we bother to comment in the first place 🙂

      2. James Ferguson @kWIQly

        HA HA – The laugh is now on me (see my comment below) ! – I am glad I have been polite about Disqus now !!!Great tool – great work – keep it up – for the record and also relevant to – I quit looking at my Klout score when I realised that having a birthday acknowledged on facebook had more impact than eliciting interest when standing on the shoulders of a giant ! – You can’t game Disqus ! but you can Disqus the discource.

  12. Abdallah Al-Hakim

    This is not too surprising and actually reflects my own changing web habits!!. Lately, I have been focusing on discovery of online conversations and have found both Disqus and engagio to be top of the class when it comes to discovery process. Even though it will be great to get a mobile apps for disqus and engagio – I must admit that when I am in the ‘discovery and respond mode’ I more likely on my laptop because it is still the best way to efficiently respond and type in comments.

    1. awaldstein

      Would you mind explaining how you use @Disqus for discovery?Not conversations as discovery as in this one. But how Disqus leads you to discover new conversations and communities not by people but by topic or both?

      1. Abdallah Al-Hakim

        I follow a number of people on disqus which allows me to monitor conversations that they contributed towards (using the context button) and in many cases I also participate in those conversations. This system leads to more ‘people’ discovery whom I then follow and they lead to future discovery of other conversations.I hope that was clear 🙂

        1. William Mougayar

          You mean via the disqus dashboard?

          1. Abdallah Al-Hakim


        2. awaldstein

          So…people are your discovery mechanism. Got it.

          1. Abdallah Al-Hakim

            Yes – also a recent review of the book ‘grouped’ on engagio blog discusses this trend of building a more social web… – FYI I have yet to read the book

        3. Mark Essel

          I tried that out for a few weeks, but haven’t been able to increase my network outside a certain size due to time constraints.Plus, the moments I am on net discussions are nearly always on my phone.

      2. Abdallah Al-Hakim

        for example – I just followed you in disqus and I anticipate that I will discover some interesting online conversations through your activities!!

      3. Koslow

        I just visited the Disqus dashboard to find other people/subjects to follow. This seems extremely difficult. My only option is to connect to my social networks to see who I can follow. I can not search for example, crowd-funding or Mark Cuban and get information back. It seems you can only discover new content and conversations through people, by following the people who are already engaged in the conversations you are apart of.

        1. awaldstein

          People follow is a great first step towards discovery.

        2. obscurelyfamous

          This has been a tough thing for us to get right in the past. It’s never been a major focus for the team, but the dashboard has a strong number of core users. What we’re trying to accomplish now is building it *right* and delivering it to the many users who are already active across sites like this one.Have you used engagio for Disqus dashboard-like utility?

          1. Koslow

            Yes I’ve used engagio as a dashboard (on and off), but I hadn’t used it for discovery before reading your response. It does achieve some of what I was describing. Indeed @awaldstein, discovery through people follow is very organic. I was looking for discovery on steroids 😀

          2. Koslow

            Actually, I was looking for exactly what you mentioned in the comments section of your blog post May 31st (i just read it)@awaldstein:disqus.Top communities, and people who are knowledgeable, opinionated, and doing things. “2. Disqus can answer the question of how many communities of true dynamic nature there are? Danielha could I bet give us a glimpse of the top communities on Disqus based on comment dynamics and participation. (Sorry Daniel, I intend to keep asking this forever!)”

          3. Techman

            I have another feature you can propose adding to Disqus 2012: the ability to reply to comments in My Disqus tab.

          4. obscurelyfamous

            It’s high on my personal list too. We’re working on it.

  13. leigh

    Just finished up a presentation on Mobile…Canada is behind (which was not the case with Internet penetration) bc of the wireless costs but not for long… It’s interesting the lack of focus on it for Corporations when mobile life/culture is so core and mobile devices have the same computing power as a PC from 2006. Nuts.I keep saying to everyone, I’ve got a great innovative leading edge idea for you …. fix the mobile version of your store locator!

    1. Matt A. Myers

      I think stores are afraid to be online – main fear being trying to be competitive on price points.. Mind you, people need to realize certain businesses just aren’t meant to exist on the local level.

      1. Guest

        If all we have to compete on is “price” then the only businesses that can compete are the BIG ones. The reality is the technology that is available to retail, especially the local ones is awesome, but it is expensive and of uncertain ROI. I know its easy to be impressed with the wonders of everything “internet/mobile” but the reality is a decent website/mobile platform and advertising campaign will easily cost $100,000 and you cannot ensure the success of the program….

        1. Matt A. Myers

          Indeed, that is a problem.

    2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      Yep. Store locators are for mobile and so are the coupons from the stores.

  14. Brandon Burns

    i bet engagio can do what you want disqus to do as well as, if not better and faster than, discus can do daily engagio email of stuff my contacts are reading is one of the few batch update emails i actually open consistently. the content is always quality, at least half the articles are new things i havent seen yet… and is usually all from my disqus connections.william? carpe opportunite?

    1. William Mougayar

      I’m biting my tongue.Music to my ears :). Thank you for the validation feedback. We have plans to push ahead more in this direction actually.

  15. JamesHRH

    The issue is what Mark Cuban calls the ‘ bored at work market ‘.Mobile accesses fragmented downtime: games, social, blogs all fill & fit those little crevasses of the day. It’s a platform shift & it is net new time online.Hard to measure when that has matured though?

  16. Josslossboss

    Discovery looks like it will be increasingly niche driven (higher engagement)and this doesn’t mean restricted POV (a la the ‘filter bubble’) I see Signals coming via four main methods:-Social (‘friends’…ie shared interests)-Curated (lighthouses/trusted others/’professionals’, eg. RottenTomatoes for film)- ‘Status quo’ Algorithms/filters (serving ‘known knowns’- similar interests)- ‘Aspirational’ Algorithms/filters (serving ‘known unknowns’ from outside the box (eg. rbutr) ) […this was to be in Reply to Arnold and Michael…but Disqus jams on my iPhone3..!]

    1. awaldstein

      Good list.Of course, ‘social’ is not just friends. Conversations are are a high form of social discovery.Dug into conversations and engagement as discovery filters in yesterday’s post. Comments still going on @

    2. William Mougayar

      The discovery from friends’ conversations is special because of the engagement factor which is a higher signal than just sharing and liking. We are going to show the results of the Engagio survey next week which indicate that’s the case. Feel free to take it – it’s about 3-4 minutes

      1. Josslossboss

        Thanks William (…not ‘Michael’ !! :0] ) … survey done, looking forward to results.

  17. F̶ʀ̶ᴇ̶ᴇ̶ᴅ̶ᴏ̶ᴍ̶ ̶


  18. Tom Critchlow

    I’m not trying to take away from the real and interesting trends in traffic change but you should note that twitter traffic never used to show up – there was a change in early 2011 that allowed for twitter traffic to show up in GA (via the referral). I blogged it in more detail here:

  19. Elia Freedman

    Hope you are feeling better today, Fred.

    1. fredwilson

      i am. i slept 10 hours last night.

      1. Dale Allyn

        Jealous ^ (but really happy for you 😉

      2. Mark Essel

        That’s a great way to recoup.

  20. Nik Souris

    It also looks like feedburner lost some traffic to Think Social helped the Google/Organic? or people can’t remember 🙂

  21. Jan Schultink

    I think you get a lot of traffic to your archive posts, someone googling “term sheet” or something.It would be interesting to compare traffic of just the June 2 post in 2010 and 2012Hope you feel better today.

  22. CJ

    I’d use mobile or my tablet to browse more but Disqus doesn’t work well for me via mobile or the tablet. It gets frustrating to want to comment and the plugin doesn’t load or the keyboard acts iffy or the mobile site loads with 90% of the comments collapsed.

    1. Mark Essel

      I’m phone only for my conversation time, totally agree on the frustration of slowwwww typing :). It takes a fare bit of editing to get a message across close to reasonable.

    2. Techman

      Is there any display issues? Disqus 2012 has been tested to work fine with iOS, Android, and Windows Phone so far, as I have tested via my website. Typing comments via mobile is not practical, as you have said. But it does work. When I load my website via mobile, none of my comments are collapsed. What are you seeing? Can you please post a screenshot.

  23. jonathanmendez

    So much for the death of Search. I expect continued rise over the next 2 years with the continued rise in queries being driven by G+

  24. ErikSchwartz

    The engagement of Disqus traffic is truly phenomenal. PVPV is 2X and time on site is like 3X.

    1. fredwilson

      particularly compared to the feedburner traffic which is also highly qualified

      1. ErikSchwartz

        It makes sense. If you’re coming via Disqus you are certainly reading the comments, and reading the comments here at AVC takes much longer now than it did 5 or 6 years ago…

  25. Conrad Ross Schulman

    In due time, Disqus will be #1 on the google analytic list because the users who power the AVC community with their valuable comments do so within the Disqus stream. The more optimized for mobile Disqus gets, the larger their traffic will be around their network. Only after this, can Disqus be #1.PS- Today’s post has very similar roots to yesterdays post. The consumers are the energy source and the traction behind the product. In this case, the consumers are us.Disqus is Uber-disruptive– GREAT POST THKS

  26. tushargp

    You really knock the best..!! But amaze as how Discuss is be the part of the refferal source.

    1. Techman

      Disqus increases web traffic because the way it is built.

      1. Emily Merkle

        And how is that, exactly?

        1. Techman

          One way is that people can click links from the Disqus dashboard to visit a website. Another way is via its notifications.

  27. ShanaC

    A) I’m not surprised by disqus at all – good writing always leads to good conversations , whether online or not. People like talking about ideas, as these are the things that shape us as individuals and as society.b) what is with the death of the community driven aggregator in your top 10?c) Facebook and traffic still seems to be an open ended question….

    1. fredwilson

      I think the HN folks are tired of me!

  28. Matt A. Myers

    Rapid uptrend in mobile doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to takeover, however it does tell you you will at some point start to see what % of user behaviour was meant / prefers to use mobile, and for what activities.

  29. obscurelyfamous

    I really like looking at the avc community as a great example of how the Disqus product is mutually valuable to websites+people.It’s awesome to see this stuff happen organically, and we’re getting much closer to making this an explicit point of value for why people use Disqus — beyond the notion of commenting.

    1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      I would put it as ‘Discuss’ or Disqus rather than just commenting…

    2. Techman

      At my website, Disqus is in the top 5. It is totally true when your website said that it increases traffic to a website.Keep up the good work Disqus. Now about Disqus 2012, can you please add CSS support. Pretty please…

    3. Techman

      Voice Bunny has pronounced Disqus wrong. They pronounced it as Discus and not Discuss.

      1. obscurelyfamous

        Phonetically, they’re correct. 😡

    4. lina yang

      how do i use disqus…?? and whats disqus for anyway??

  30. Prokofy

    It’s shocking how little time people spend on a website — it makes you wonder why you ever write anything more than a 100-word story (if you’re interested in traffic, anyway).It hadn’t occurred to me to go on Disqus itself to see what is out there, I think of it as something I log into in order to comment on Fred’s page or any other page.I’m also surprised to see that Stumbleupon leads anywhere. I always thought that was a little-used cul-de-sac. I even see it as a traffic referrer on my blog.I agree about mobile phones, they are the new big virtual world.

  31. Patrick Parker

    Yes please. A Disqus app for my Android. I would like to read, and I also like to use my Disqus profile to authenticate for commenting on other sites.

    1. William Mougayar

      Then, please try where you authenticate your social networks and commenting systems including Disqus. Let me know what you think. Our mobile app is upcoming.

  32. gmalov

    Nice improvement in y/y bounce rates! Did the voicebunny feature contribute to the favorable stats?

    1. fredwilson

      I dont know but it would be neat if it did

  33. Nathan Zaru

    The only thing I would add is you can bet a huge percentage of the “(direct) / (none)” is mobile traffic. This is because a mobile app (like Twitter) is by definition a non browser application, and Google Analytics does not understand traffic coming from “non browser applications” and thus categorizes it as “(direct) / (none)”.You can get a more accurate picture of your mobile traffic by going into Google Analytics > Standard Reporting > Audience > Mobile. Hope this is helpful.

    1. fredwilson

      Yes it is. Thanks

    2. Emily Merkle

      Nicely done.

  34. Jamie Lin

    Fred, here’s my top 10:…It’s very interesting to see, though we both blog about VC & entrepreneurship, how differently readers are finding their ways to our blogs.

    1. fredwilson

      AVC is a twitter bitch and your blog is a facebook bitch

  35. Giddy

    Does the mobile count include people who receive your blog by e-mail, and then read it directly from their inbox? (this is what I do). I also thought mobile would be higher by now. Either ways, I agree – the dramatic change towards mobile is clear.

  36. ProfileTree

    Disqus is a really good commenting platform. I have never seen anything better than Disqus! 🙂

  37. Kaushalam

    No doubt that Disqus is one of the prominent tool for commenting or conversation, i would like to recommend this for a blog that will help building relationship with the people talking on same subjects.

  38. Cam MacRae

    And impossible from my Kindle Fire – can’t type into the comment box.

  39. Sam Parker

    What’s the problem you’re seeing typing a comment on the iPhone?

  40. Techman

    What are you seeing? Is the keyboard going away after about 2 seconds? That is what I was getting the other day.

  41. Techman

    What layout engine is the Kindle Fire’s browser using? WebKit, Gecko, KHTML, Presto?

  42. Cam MacRae


  43. Techman

    Then the embed should be fine. It works very well with webkit browsers. Unless Amazon has a custom webkit engine.

  44. Cam MacRae

    While I agree that it should be fine in theory, it’s not in practice: The disqus beta has only just started working in mobile safari, didn’t work in chrome in it’s first iteration, but has always worked with safari.

  45. Techman

    Chrome and Safari both use WebKit as their layout engine, so they both should have worked fine.

  46. Cam MacRae

    Yes, again we agree. But they didn’t.