Retiring and archiving blogs
It’s frustrating for users when they browse a blog network like ours and stumble across inactive blogs. It’s like hitting a dead end in an unfamiliar part of town. That’s why when blogs aren’t updated regularly the traffic drops away steeply and it is very difficult to bring it back to the network. The best thing to do in these situations is reroute people so no one gets lost in the first place.
If you no longer wish to use your blog, no problem, please let us know and we’ll post a notification on the blog so that users know it’s closed. This note then gives users the option of either looking at a static 'posterity' copy or going to the blogs landing page to find [active] blogs related to their interests.
For an example of how a blog looks once we've archived it, visit http://blogs.bath.ac.uk/humanpoweredflight.
When we renewed blogs.bath.ac.uk earlier this year, we explained that we would take a proactive approach to archiving inactive blogs as well as following up on a request. If we see inactivity of longer than a month on a blog, we’ll contact you to find out why its gone quiet but do feel free to contact us in advance to notify us of any planned downtime. If it’s still inactive after 3 months, we’ll try to help you get it back on track, and if it’s still all quiet after 6 months, we’ll retire the blog.
You have the data
Since the new blogs.bath.ac.uk launched in March 2014, 80,000 posts have been viewed by 31,000 unique users. That’s an 13% increase in the number of viewers compared with the same period the previous year.
70% of the traffic to the blogs comes from outside of Bath with 30% of the users coming from outside of the UK. 20% use their phone or tablet to read your posts; in fact, 86% more people use their phone to read the blogs compared with the previous year.
Remember you can get stats for your own posts via the dashboard when you log in to your blog. Just click on 'Jetpack' in the sidebar and then click on 'Site Stats'. Looking at the stats for your blogs can help guide you on what to post about and when.
Getting better all the time
Blogs.Bath is being continuously improved. Our aim is to release new features on the platform on a monthly basis. In January we will add filtering to the landing page of the blogs, so that people can narrow our long list of blogs down to those that match their interests. Then in February we’ll be adding feeds for each blog, so that people can subscribe to updates.
You can see further scheduled releases on the Digital Roadmap. And, as ever, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have feedback from users or ideas for new features.