To close out 2012, I wanted to share my annual rundown of Gnome Stew’s site statistics and our milestones from the year.
Let’s start with the numbers, with notes/comparisons to this time last year in parentheses:
- 158,274 unique visitors (up about 1%)
- 322,479 visits (up about 3%; approximately 52% of visitors are repeat visitors)
- 628,534 pageviews (up about 8%)
- Around 4,200 RSS/email subscribers (up about 7%)
- Around 2,700 subscribers (We purged thousands of spam accounts in 2012)
- 270 articles
- About 3,160 comments (about 23,600 total, not counting pings)
These numbers could be better, but I like them overall. The site’s readership grew modestly in all categories, whereas it shrank in nearly all categories in 2011. Growth is good, and I’d like to see more of it, but for now I’m happy with stability plus modest growth.
One thing that tells me is that the advice we took from our readers, and the changes we made to the site over the course of 2012 (more on those in a moment), had an impact on the size of our readership.
In terms of milestones, it’s been a fantastic year for the Stew:
- We redesigned the site from top to bottom, streamlining things and adding some new functionality as well as a new look
- We published our third book, Phil Vecchione’s Never Unprepared: The Complete Game Master’s Guide to Session Prep, which has sold like hotcakes
- Thanks to you, Gnome Stew won the Gold ENnie Award for Best Blog
- Our 2011 book, Masks: 1,000 Memorable NPCs for Any Roleplaying Game, won the Gold ENnie Award for Best Aid/Accessory and was nominated for Product of the Year, and Masks and Never Unprepared were both nominated for Golden Geek Awards
- We launched our mailing list
- Bob Everson joined the team as our proofreader
- We accepted and ran a host of great guest articles by Gnome Stew readers, an initiative that started at the tail end of 2011
- We hosted and ran the first annual New Year, New Game challenge (which will be starting up again shortly for 2013)
- And last but not least, we moved the entirety of my old GMing blog, Treasure Tables, to Gnome Stew
It’s been a good year — our fifth, if you can believe it (I sometimes can’t), with the site’s next birthday coming in May of 2013. Thank you for reading Gnome Stew, commenting on our articles, buying our books, and spreading the word about the site to other GMs. You, our readers, have always, do, and will continue to rock on toast.
In closing, happy New Year, and many happy returns!