Thursday, April 24, 2008

Lies, damned lies, and forum statistics

Last week I mentioned that I'd updated our stats page to show how many people are visiting Expat Focus on a monthly basis. One of the interesting things I like to do with our stats is to take a look and see what patterns or anomalies emerge. Something which definitely falls into the former but not the latter group is the large drop off in visitor numbers during December (is there something going on I should know about?!).

We're also able to see how popular individual sections of the site are on a country by country basis and then compare those figures with activity in the forums to see how well they match. Mostly, things are pretty much what you would expect - for example, we don't have (relatively speaking) a large number of visitors to the Andorra guide and the Andorra forum is also very quiet.

However, the correlation isn't always so logical. A good case in point is France. The figures for the French sections of the site show that it's one of the busiest yet the popularity of the forum doesn't reflect this. This is one of the challenges we face this year, how do we encourage those people to form a community - one based on shared interests and concerns - and start helping each other? We're already planning a few things but would love to hear from you if you have any ideas.

1 comment:

Kira said...

Dear Expat Focus,

Interesting point you are raising considering web behaviour. Do you use Google Analytics to futher study the usage of your site?

As for France...
Do you have a France Ambassador to keep the France forum alive? Another possibility is that the expats in France use another site's forum to communicate. Where do most expats /web visitors live in France? How about having a Paris -ambassador host an event to stimulate EF-engagement?

I host events for expats/repatriates in Amsterdam. I don't have a website with a forum, as each event is one big offline 'forum' of questions, answers and discussions from where to get a good tax lawyer to how they like the bouquet of the wine.