* Weblogs vs. Websites, Part 2

Do weblogs generate more traffic than traditional websites? I republished my entire website with weblog software to find out. This note is an update to my ongoing test.

Background

My traditional law firm website, Heels-dot-com, has been online since 03/24/1997. I launched my weblog website, Beaverlaw-dot-com, on 01/26/03. I republished my entire website with weblog software to find out if weblogs can improve my bottom line. In other words, will publishing my website with weblog software produce a statistically significant improvement in my website’s return on investment (ROI)?

For the purpose of this article, I’m defining a “weblog” as any website published and maintained with weblog software. Incidentally, I’m using the “-dot-” notation because I use search-and-replace software to convert pages from my traditional website to pages for my weblog website.

Results are Inconclusive

In its first full month of publication, my weblog website Beaverlaw-dot-com has produced some interesting results. Consider the following raw statistics.

Type Website Weblog
Domain Heels-dot-com Beaverlaw-dot-com
Pages in Google 1,200+ 171
2003/02 Page Views 12,314 3,799

There are many ways to interpret the above statistics. The pro-weblog reader would note that my weblog went from zero to 171 pages in Google in its first month and that overall traffic to my websites increased by over 30%. The anti-weblog reader would note that fewer than 15% of my weblogs pages have been indexed by Google. The pragmatist (that would be me) would note that the results are inconclusive. It is also worth noting that, in the first month of the experiment, I received three substantive e-mail messages and 17 spam messages from my weblog. Also, many weblog readers linked to the original article (thanks) but none added anything substantive to the discussion. It is important to note that this last observation is not a criticism of the linkers, just an observation.

Summary

I will continue to monitor the website traffic and e-mail that I receive for both of my websites. Do weblog websites generate more traffic than traditional websites? Does that traffic translate into business? Is weblog software a viable alternative for a commercial website? Or is there some other reason for publishing weblogs? Stay tuned.

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