The Stats I Track

This Week In Writing, we explore which stats are necessary to track and which are safe to ignore.

The Stats I Track
Photo by Jose Francisco Morales / Unsplash

I took AP Statistics in high school. At the end of the year, I prepared a statistical analysis of strikeouts over the previous 100 MLB seasons. There was a tri-fold board and everything. Today, there are far too many statistics in baseball to track. My strikeout presentation would be pretty pedestrian when you can determine the most obscure feats.

As writers, we have access to a multitude of stats as well. View counts, read time, followers, sales — you name it, and you can probably track it. But are all of these numbers worth our time? I don’t know about you, but I can get pretty obsessive checking stats if I’m not careful.

While stats are vital since they represent people engaging with my content, I try to ignore as many of them as possible. I’m not a writer influenced to change styles, topics, or tone based on what does well — maybe that makes me naive, but it works for me. Instead, I keep track of a few stats that are important to me:

  • Total Views (30 Days): The total number of views across all of my content in the past month.
  • Membership Referrals: The number of Medium members who use my affiliate link.
  • Partner Program Earnings (Total): The total amount of income generated from stories on Medium.
  • Write Now Reviews: Reviews of my book on Amazon and Goodreads.
  • Patreon Members: The total number of supporters on Patreon.

It’s difficult for me to track the individual success or metrics from single posts, mainly because they span such a huge timeframe. Something might sputter back to the top and find new life, but I’ll never know. Instead, I focus my stats-based attention on aggregate numbers and revenue generation. After all, those are the numbers that support my writing.

What stats are important to you? What do you keep track of regularly? Hit reply and let me know.

Justin Cox Justin Cox

Justin Cox is a donut-loving, word-writing, nonprofit consultant based in Orlando. He also runs The Writing Cooperative on Medium. Come say hello!