Things you can learn from server logs

I’ve known for a long time that Flash: Those Who Ride the Lightning is the most-visited section of this site. For the past few months I’ve mainly been interested in how this journal is being found, read, etc., but I recently went to look at the Flash traffic statistics.

Here are the most frequently-requested pages over the past month:

  1. Teen Titans
  2. The site’s home page
  3. Raven
  4. Random team-name generator
  5. Starfire
  6. Nightwing (the original Robin)
  7. Cyborg
  8. Justice League
  9. Flash III: Wally West

Yes, you read it right: the Flash is #9 on his own website! And aside from the home page and a generator that encourages you to hit reload to get new names, every page ahead of him is someone who appears on the Cartoon Network. I’ve profiled other Titans, including Kid Flash, Donna Troy, and Jesse Quick, but they’re all behind in popularity.

Search requests are filled with Teen Titans-related terms as well. The top phrase actually is “Teen Titans” (at 26% of search-related hits!) followed, oddly enough, by “Marvel” (only 6%). Various combinations of Teen Titans, Raven and Starfire take up 7 of the top 20 slots.

I also like to see who’s linking to my pages. Sometimes I discover a cool site that I end up bookmarking or linking back to, sometimes I discover new ideas, and sometimes it’s just an ego boost to see people linking to my site. One page I found recently was someone’s LiveJournal entry on reading the comic for the first time after knowing only the cartoon. I don’t have the link anymore, but the part that sticks in my mind was a remark that the main difference seemed to be that the characters were “older and skankier — Starfire, put on some clothes!” It was interesting to see someone compare the comic to the cartoon, rather than the other way around, especially since Starfire’s been wearing that outfit since 1980!

So the most visited pages on the site are those dealing with the Teen Titans, and chances are a lot of those visitors are more familiar with the cartoon than the comic book. Clearly, it’s time to revisit these pages and make sure they’re the best I can make them.

Last weekend I started focusing on updating the Titans-related pages. I realized that Raven’s entry was out of date (yes, the #2 profile page), and that I still hadn’t posted a scan of Cyborg’s current look. So I updated Raven and scanned a newer picture of Cyborg. Today I started filling in the rest of Cyborg’s various incarnations (he just kept losing more and more of his humanity, Tin Woodsman-style) and adding more to the Teen Titans entry. Mainly, I want the page to give people a better idea of the team’s history. Pictures are a much better hook than just headlines, so now there’s a picture of the team in each era.

There are still limits. This is a Flash site, after all, so there isn’t really any reason to profile Beast Boy here. (That hasn’t stopped people from looking, though.) But it’s odd to see that a side project has actually become more popular than the main focus of the site!

4 thoughts on “Things you can learn from server logs

  1. adam

    you should make red x return to the show as a hero and have all of the teen titans that robin recruted stay at titan tower like everyone else.

    Reply

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