Re: Front page views?

#1
I was just curious about something. 

I hear very often here about how important it is to have an update schedule that updates often, so as to maximize the amount of time you have on the front page. 

But, having paid for the analytics, I have to ask...is anyone actually all that sure that the front page is all that important? When I update a chapter, I figure I get maybe 3-4 views from being on the recently updated list on the front page. That's it. I've updated at all times of the day, too, and it doesn't seem to matter much. I get far, far more views from people searching for specific things through the site's search engine. 

Am I missing something obvious? Is it something I'm doing that's causing people not to click when they see it on the front page? Or is it actually just that being on that 'most recently updated' list on the front page just isn't actually that important?

Re: Front page views?

#2
A lot of people swear by it, but it didn't seem to matter for me. I'd get like... three or four reads at first, then get a hundred a few hours later. I definitely wasn't on the updated list at that point.

I have no idea how folks stumble upon stories on here. It just sorta happens. RR is just a magical box I shove my story in and numbers pop out. Maybe that's why my stories don't do as well as other people's. I'll never understand it.

Re: Front page views?

#3
I would say it is because your title and cover art are not very eye catching, I'm not saying it's bad, it just doesn't grab the readers attention. It is all dark cold colors so it doesn't stick out from the dark background of most people on RoyalRoad, the title is nice but it doesn't give you a very good sense for the story. Just treat getting views the same as fishing, you need to find where and when the fish gather, then you have to make them interested in the lure, then grab them with the hook. 

you cover art is of a dreary looking landscape, I like the look of it, but it doesn't help me to understand your story. It is a dark path that is shrouded in shadow, it kind of gives an eerie feeling of mystery. You should add something to be the focus of the cover, a light on the path, somebody walking down the path, etc...

well not like I know a lot about this, it's just how I would do it were I to be in your shoes. after all I am not an author.

Re: Front page views?

#4

CloverCloverClover Wrote: But, having paid for the analytics, I have to ask...is anyone actually all that sure that the front page is all that important? When I update a chapter, I figure I get maybe 3-4 views from being on the recently updated list on the front page. That's it. I've updated at all times of the day, too, and it doesn't seem to matter much. I get far, far more views from people searching for specific things through the site's search engine.



I had the same confusion at first. And here are my thoughts and understanding of the matter:
1. It varies story to story. My analytics still show that I had around 60 visits from just from the homepage, in last week (although I updated only thrice or something in last one week) vs 3 from search. But, yours can be completely opposite.
2. The hit on the chapter view can be different too. E.g. in 4-5 hours after I update, I get 5-6 views for the latest chapter, BUT my overall views for the story goes up much higher, which I truly hope indicates that I am getting new readers.

Again, analytics is just a tool and it is up to us on how we can leverage it to maximize our reader base. If say yours is not getting as much hit from the front page, then as one comment suggested, may be find a more catchy cover art? Mine was from a kind member of this sites and they do a great job with requests.
peoapproval

Re: Front page views?

#5

Here is a quick experiment you can do: Publish a chapter then go back after 12 hours and record how many views you have. Then go back say 3 days later and compare the number of views you get then.

It is just my experience that authors get the most views in their chapters on the first day of publishing the said chapter. Partly because of the exposure on the front page for those who are seeking new stories and partly because that is the time those who favorited the story will respond to the message that there are new chapters for the story they are following. 

Of course, this theory doesn't work anymore if your story is already popular since the number of views will vary because people will continuously return to your story and reread chapters they want to see again.

Re: Front page views?

#6

Nautilus Wrote: I would say it is because your title and cover art are not very eye catching, I'm not saying it's bad, it just doesn't grab the readers attention. It is all dark cold colors so it doesn't stick out from the dark background of most people on RoyalRoad, the title is nice but it doesn't give you a very good sense for the story. Just treat getting views the same as fishing, you need to find where and when the fish gather, then you have to make them interested in the lure, then grab them with the hook. 

you cover art is of a dreary looking landscape, I like the look of it, but it doesn't help me to understand your story. It is a dark path that is shrouded in shadow, it kind of gives an eerie feeling of mystery. You should add something to be the focus of the cover, a light on the path, somebody walking down the path, etc...

well not like I know a lot about this, it's just how I would do it were I to be in your shoes. after all I am not an author.



The thing is it's just some art I made by playing around on an art generator site. It's kind of hard to add in specific details on websites like that. 

batotit Wrote: Here is a quick experiment you can do: Publish a chapter then go back after 12 hours and record how many views you have. Then go back say 3 days later and compare the number of views you get then.

It is just my experience that authors get the most views in their chapters on the first day of publishing the said chapter. Partly because of the exposure on the front page for those who are seeking new stories and partly because that is the time those who favorited the story will respond to the message that there are new chapters for the story they are following. 

Of course, this theory doesn't work anymore if your story is already popular since the number of views will vary because people will continuously return to your story and reread chapters they want to see again.



I definitely get more views when I update a chapter, my point is that those views don't actually come from being on the front page, which I hear so often here is vital to a story's popularity. 

Re: Front page views?

#7

CloverCloverClover Wrote: I definitely get more views when I update a chapter, my point is that those views don't actually come from being on the front page, which I hear so often here is vital to a story's popularity.

You have decent Followers, that's what counts. If I follow a story and like it, and I see it releases a new chapter (on my Follows page), I will click on the story. 

And even if I paused on some chapter before this one (the most recent one), I might continue reading from there, because the update pushed it up my Follows queue, and made me remember the story exists (amongs tons of other ones I read). So, updating daily helps in that way as well, and not just with finding new readers.

And, when you say you only notice 3-4 views, is that in the fiction overall, or just the new chapter? Because, people won't click on your new chapter directly, on the Latest Updates page. If they are interested, then they will click on your fiction title. And from there, a small percentage will click on Chapter 1 (or larger percentage, if your page is attractive). Others will bookmark it for Read Later, and return when they have the time, or are bored, or wait for a few weeks until more chapters get realeased. I'm not sure how that is shown in the Analytics: maybe they discovered you from Latest updates, but the views come later on, slowly... Also keep in mind that each person from Latest Updates, that turns into a reader, will be responsible for dozens of views, and maybe a follow/favourite, with time. So, it's not to be underestimated, even if you don't see the effects immediately upon posting! Cheers

Re: Front page views?

#8
But yes, you are probably right that these "You should do X, Y and Z!" rules are overhyped. In the end, the most important factor is how enjoyable the story is. :)

"Put your cover in your signature!", "Post daily!", "Have long titles and chapter names!", "Be active on the forums and comment a lot!", I don't think these pieces of advice are nearly as impactful as people say.

Re: Front page views?

#9
I have another thing to add... chapter titles. They matter. If you see a chapter with a funny or interesting title that is eye-catching chances are way higher you will click on it. Saying "Book 3: chapter 6" does not inspire anyone to pick it up, especially if the cover/title of the book itself isn't very interesting. I noticed that they mattered a lot for me in the beginning. Granted, it matters very little to my novel now, and titles are mainly a funny thing I get on or just something lazy these days, but I do try to make an effort and come up with good chapter titles (have a few ones I am quite proud of).

Also, the time you post matters a lot too. When I started I posted at 18:00 my time but found that my post just got drowned. I eventually settled on 17:35 and have stuck with that since.

Last and not least... you need to remember to just get lucky lol.