Benedict Evans wrote a post about his traffic recently and I am proud that AVC is one of his top ten referrers. That inspired me to post some traffic data here today.

I've had google analytics on this blog since Oct 2005 and here's what the monthly traffic has looked like since then:

Monthly traffic since 2005

I feel like the AVC audince has been stable (or flat) since 2010. The peak in the middle of 2011 was from stumbleupon which was for some reason sending a boatload of traffic here for a while. That has since gone away and we are generally at about 250,000 visits per month. The UV chart looks almost identical to visits except it's about 175,000 UVs per month vs 250,000 visits.

Here are the top ten countries where AVC readers reside:

Avc audience location

And here are the top ten sources of traffic (actually eight because twitter appears twice and number ten is this blog)

Avc top ten referrers


Comments (Archived):

  1. jason wright

    you write in English. five of the ten countries have English as a native language.have you considered translating posts, or do you leave that to G?

    1. LE

      What would then happen with the comments?And if you translated the comments then it would invite comments in foreign languages. For that matter even if the posts were in a foreign language it would then create in theory foreign language comments. You could filter them of course but what would be the point exactly? Not to mention nuance translation in a foreign language.

      1. jason wright

        spreading the wisdom, widening the conversation, breaking down barriers.

  2. Robert

    Is google traffic mostly long tail?

    1. fredwilson

      it is mostly people using google as a lazy way to type look at the top ten keywords

      1. ShanaC

        how much is non-brand keywords

      2. JamesHRH

        I am on safari and it is doing two odd things:1) it is not auto-suggesting AVC as a Top Site (I use this feature religiously)2) the unified URL / search box routes my daily visits to AVC thru GOOG (I type in ‘avc’ and it never pulls the URL directly, but searches it & then I click through)FWIW

      3. Matt Zagaja

        I was really surprised and amused when watching a Google Ventures presentation on adwords that suggested buying your own name as an adword to increase traffic. You wouldn’t think it would make a difference since you would be the top organic result but the data says it does.

  3. Gustavo Melo

    Would be interesting to look at how much of this traffic is being driven by user engagement through the commenting section vs. the initial article read. An interesting ratio to contemplate on a per-article basis as well. AVC is such a great example of a highly active community.

  4. Kirsten Lambertsen

    I take exception to these stats!!! Oh, wait. That was yesterday 😉

    1. JamesHRH

      Nice touch!

  5. Kirsten Lambertsen

    Does Disqus surface as a traffic source?

    1. fredwilson

      yes, but only a significant one in the past couple years since they started driving traffic. this year they are number 5 with about 50,000 visits sent

      1. Kirsten Lambertsen

        Wow! That seems impressive to me. I know their daily email sends me quite a few places.

  6. William Mougayar

    Stability is good.How about stats on comments? That’s an indication of real engagement, which is another valuable metric. I bet that has continued to go up.

    1. LE

      Remember early 90’s screen savers? (Can’t think of the name but there was one on the mac that was quite ubiquitous).Anyway comments are directly related to both the forkiness of the topic as well as the precision of Fred’s writing (less precision and/or research means more things that people will be taking issue with) as well as the circumspection factor (the extent of “all things considered” and “to be sure”.) Length also plays a factor. Generally two paragraphs or less with a polarizing topic where Fred takes a strong stand on one side of the issue and where people can fork to other thoughts would create a good comment stream.Long videos of course in theory should result in shorter commenting.Separate of course to whether the particular story ends up being picked up by the “wire” services (HN, Techmeme etc.).Bottom line is I’m not sure you can make many conclusions about quantity of comments w/o separating (which you can’t) the topic that is being written about.

      1. LE

        One other thing I missed. The extent to which Fred engages with commenters directly will change whether those commenters potentially return on any kind of basis. Of course for various reasons this is not practical but it would be fairly easy to increase engagement just by being more engaged. But that doesn’t scale.

        1. jason wright

          i’d like to see stats on this.

      2. William Mougayar

        Yup, these parameters are there, but I think on the whole, comments activity is probably up.

    2. fredwilson

      I will look into that

    3. ShanaC

      Growth can be better

      1. PhilipSugar

        Growth is not always better.

    4. awaldstein

      What kind of comments stats can Disqus tell us beside how many, how often, time on site I wonder?Can they tell us anything about me or you or the characteristics of the community from the behavioral side. If you can target ads you would seem to have to know to whom–no?Interested in this.

      1. William Mougayar

        These are interesting parameters. I’m not sure if they are headed that way, but it would be interesting indeed. Facebook & Twitter know more and more about me, that’s for sure & it’s reflected in their recommendations and ads.

  7. John Revay

    Hey Fred,I saw this great portrait of Mayor Mike on today.It may be interesting to have you write a post of what it was like to have Mike Bloomberg in office during your NYC tech run.I remember after 9/11 – when there was a change in the NY mayor, I remember having Rudy Giuliani in office and feeling safer – I thought Rudy did a great job during the news conferences after the bombing and was worried about this new mayor coming in…..I think he did a wonderful job, smart, strong and all around good guy. He certainly had enough $$ that he could not be bought.

  8. Anvesh

    I usually read the posts in my gmail inbox and so do a lot of your subscribers I’m sure (on email, that is). That’s what I usually do for B. Evans’ blog and a few other blogs that I follow as well. I don’t usually click thru to unless I want to partake or get a sense of the discussion in the comments section. Would be interesting to see how your email subscription and open rates have trended over time…

    1. Timothy Meade

      You miss quite a bit that way, a significant part of the community is in the comments.

  9. pointsnfigures

    This is one of the most engaged communities on the internet. You get engagement at other blogs, websites, newspapers, but the comments are usually pretty vapid. I learn stuff here.

  10. Alex Murphy

    The point has been made that this is a very engaged community, and it clearly is, thanks for the drinks barkeep. ;)Can you share any data you have about engagement? How would you demonstrate engagement on the blog empirically … as if you were presenting to an investor? What the story was, and what the story is going forward? Especially with regard to changes in those data points with the new design. Would be interesting to hear (read) how you would present it.

  11. ShanaC

    Why hasn’t it grown…I’m actually a bit shocked that it hasn’t

    1. Jim Peterson

      Some don’t want to learn no matter how much valuable free information is laid out in front of them?

    2. jason wright

      not all investments are a success.

    3. Matt Zagaja

      Sometimes small size is as much a feature as scaling. :)…

  12. ShanaC

    I’m so lost – the main page is showing 96 comments for this post, but only 23 once I am here….

    1. fredwilson

      Disqus bug

      1. Vineeth Kariappa

        Not a bug. on the index, it display the number of topics started by ppl. On the page, it displays the total comments.

    2. jack

      Hopefully disqus gets potty trained in 2k14. They spent most of 2k13 shitting the bed.

    3. John Revay

      I have noticed that for the last few days / week +/-. It is strange every day I click through and see around that #….then once you open the comments it drops off.

    4. jason wright

      D bug time

  13. Jevon

    I’m going to keep refreshing to help get the Canada number pumped up.

  14. Kim Auclair

    wow, it’s amazing !

  15. Jan Schultink

    I think your community is an example where probably 100% of the target audience is actually visiting the site, hence the stable growth.

  16. awaldstein

    Fred–What an astounding set of data. It humbles me on one side for my own URLs, it pleases me no end to be part of this community.I’d love to see one of the data scientists at Disqus share with us what they can gleam from the comment data as the community lives in the comments, not really in the post itself.Have a great New Year.

    1. Richard

      There is something called the Granger Causality test. It would test to see whether the number of post costs cuases the comments to increase or whether the number of comments causes the the number if visits to increase. Guess which is more likely?

  17. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    Your direct/none % looks much better than most of the so called commercial websites…. and I am really proud of getting that count ,,,one up …Have a great 2014 … AVCers ….Happy New Year to you all…..

  18. Tom Labus

    Maybe time to expand the scope of what you talk about to attract an addition to the current audience

  19. GetAClueDude

    Engagement comes from topics that are interesting or universal in nature, generally. has an engaged audience because it has topics that affect people and that they want to express an opinion. has an egaged music community based upon varying styles of music and the discovery of new songs.


    Oh, …and youtube?

  21. William Mougayar

    At least 35%. Lol.

  22. george

    That’s clever…all in fun.