Feedburner FeedCount

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The RSS subscribes for this site is tracked using the Feedburner service. From the past week I have been observing an change in the way the feed count is reported/calculated. I am not sure if I am the only one seeing this change.

The site had an average reader count of around 130 feed subscribers. On one Wednesday it suddenly fell to 75 (almost 50% reduction). I thought that there were a bunch of guys who got bored with my posts 😀

The day I wrote a post on Windows Live Writer, the count again shot back to 137. Yesterday I didn’t write any post and the count is back to 70’s.

Feedburner never used to report statistics based on the post frequency/count.

Has Feedburner changed the way it reports the RSS subscribers ? Anybody facing a similar problem ?

7 comments… add one

  • TheAnand Jun 2, 2007

    I am facing this too, but not this drastic a change….mine is a total of abt 22, drops to 18 or so on the days I don’t post…..but then, i never bother much with their stats….

  • Shankar Ganesh Jun 2, 2007

    I’ve been wondering about this for a very long time. It goes a little down for some days. I post – it’s then up! Something weird.

  • Arnold Jun 2, 2007

    I’ve not noticed anything out of the normal up & down as yet.

    What is clear though is that if you miss a day or two, the subscriber numbers drop. I can’t really see why that should happen though in that presumably people who are subscribed to your feed aren’t actively looking for inactivity on your part but rather using the feed subscription to look for feed activity ie posts.

    The only thing that comes to mind is that possibly a new post triggers a pseudo-subscription from some of the aggregators so if you missed a day, they’d drop you. I have a skim though the feed subscriber details on my blogs now and again and there seems to be some indication that this happens, at least to me.

    Don’t forget too that “a day” isn’t a fixed time period either. Us folk over in GMT-land start the day much earlier than you guys in America-timezone land and that definitely affects things like adsense reporting and so on. I’ve noticed that the time of day that I post affects subscriptions too and I think that it’s at least partially because of the timezone effect in that my subscribers appear to have an almost equaly US/UK split. The type of readers you have will also affect the best time of day to post eg if it’s mainly work based then it’s probably best to post in the morning, in the evening for home-based, this being on the basis that your post will sink below subsequent posts from other blogs that people may be subscribed to.

  • Arnold Jun 2, 2007

    But all that doesn’t explain why I have any subscribers on my new blog at http://www.anageofmagic.com !

    Virtually no promotion, hardly any posts and four subscribers.

    Why?

  • Venu Jun 2, 2007

    Arnold I agree with your point that some “feedfetchers” might contribute to the change in count. But I didn’t observe it few weeks/months back. I am noticing this problem only from the past week.

    The 4 subscribers might also be due to some “feed bots” 🙂

    Also feedburner probably cannot let out the algorithm that they use to caculate feed readers. If its revealed, there are probably chances of gaming

  • Arnold Jun 3, 2007

    It wouldn’t be down to them “correcting” for the recent “subscribe to feed” link train, would it? I know that some people seemed to pick up oodles of extra subscribers from that and I wonder if they are “correcting” things across the board by reducing the numbers reported for anyone participating in that link train?

    I’ve lost track of who is on what train but if you were on it and didn’t pick up a lot of new subscribers then their “correction” (if they’ve done such a thing) would reduce the number reported. For instance, you might actually have several hundred subscribers but they might only report you had, say, half the real number.

    However, going against this is that from the chart on this page you didn’t seem to get a bit kick from anything like that ie nothing to “correct”.

    What we really need is for someone to work out a way to get pages Stumbled. I’ve had several hundred hits a day now and again from it on and would love to know how to bring other pages from the sites into that league.

    I must keep an eye on http://www.anageofmagic.com to see what happens. As it is, I’m getting a slow trickle of search engine hits on it unexpectedly early in its life.

    Incidently, you should change your “notify of followup comments” to checked.

  • venukb Jun 3, 2007

    Arnold, Nah I didn’t take part in that train 🙂 (Though I did participate in the Technorati Favorites train).

    So I believe the correction is not due to that. Again I would wait for few more days to see if the count stabilizes

    Regarding “notify comments” i set the option to be checked by default 🙂

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