Last week was terrific in terms of increasing awareness of the blog and OnCompare. Of course, buzz just for the sake of it isn’t particularly useful. Much more useful for us is:

  1. Getting Twitter followers
  2. Getting beta signups
  3. Helping fellow startupers

#1 and #2 are easy (and fun) to measure, so that’s what’s below. #3 is why we really started the blog, but is likely impossible to measure and would make for a very boring post, so I’ll let Aaron write that one.

Filling the Funnel

Before last week, our best day in terms of blog page views was around 1k (a respectable number for a week-old blog) thanks in large part to a mention from @EricRies (specific tweet). Last Thursday, however, we brought in a little over 5k views after making it to the front page of Hacker News!

As for Friday, getting to write a guest post in TechFlash was huge. Both in terms of traffic but also building credibility within the Seattle startup community. Never underestimate the value of social proof.

Converting Twitter Followers

To us, a Twitter follower is worth more than a beta invite sign up because they’ll not only play with OnCompare when we launch, but there’s a good chance they’ll help us spread the word if we provide valuable info here on the blog.

After we got some attention on the 13th, the Eric Ries day, we quickly realized that people were happy to check out the blog, but very few of them were becoming Twitter users or signing up for the beta. The problem, we hypothesized, was an unclear call to action – visitors think the blog is the destination, not OnCompare. The solution, “Slap visitors in the face with a call to action.”

Here’s the before:

Before slapping visitors in the face

And after:

And after

So much better, right?

We think so, but measuring is hard on something like a blog with the metrics WordPress.com offers. Our click through rates to OnCompare.com and our Twitter feed have stayed steady at 15% but that probably means the new version is better than the old one.

On a blog, conversion rates will typically decline over time since the same folks will come back over and over when we post new content, but they’ll rarely go back to the beta sign page or our Twitter feed more than once.

All told, we’re feeling pretty good about our Twitter following at this point. 118 real people (no follower hoarding) in a two weeks isn’t bad – hopefully we can hit 200 by launch.

Converting Beta Users

While we don’t have a cool graph for our Twitter user increase over time, we do have one for our Beta signups:

 

Beta signups by hour

As you can see, we’re doing a good job converting buzz into signups, especially recently. Could we be doing better? Very likely, although I’m not sure the most efficient way to do that considering the massive amount of other work on our plate at this point. Tips are welcome!

One other number that might be interesting:

13.5%

The % of people who visit OnCompare and sign up as a beta user.

What other numbers/metrics should we focus on or would you like see?

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