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Ford and Etal site visits surge in first month

Other posts by  |  Sheelagh Caygill on Google+ |  December 1, 2011 | 0 Comments

November unique user figures for in the visits column had more than 10,000 unique visits in its first full month online.

The number exceeds our projections and is a strong start for Northumberland’s only online travel and tourism magazine.

The site went live in October and has just completed its first full month online. Visitors are coming from a variety of sources, including Twitter, back links, Facebook, general awareness, and of course search engines.

It takes weeks for a site to be fully indexed by search engines. Usually Yahoo and Bing index more quickly, with Google taking a while longer, sometimes up to eight weeks.

Sheelagh Caygill, who works on the site’s search engine optimisation, said is doing well in search engines.

“For specific search terms our results are outstanding. For example, for the search term ‘Hexham Hydro Project’ our site is on page one of Google, in position six or seven. This is higher than the Hexham Courant, a news website that has had an online presence for many years.

“For the term ‘Cragside Electric Estate’, we are close to the top of page two of Google, so we are happy with the results so far.”

Currently, for the highly competitive and very broad search term ‘Northumberland,’ appears on page 14 of Google. This is 140th out 37,900,000 search results.

“When you consider just how new our site is and that it is still being fully indexed by Google, the visits figures and its position in Google are good,” said Sheelagh.

The site is drawing its metrics from its host server log which has been modified to remove all bots, spiders and junk queries.  It does have Google Analytics tracking code installed as a measuring tool and resource, but will not rely solely on Google Analytics for unique visitor numbers.

“Google Analytics is based on Javascript being downloaded to an end-user’s computer and reports sent back to Google. Some people block all Javascript that is loaded from a remote service and in such instances their visit will not be tracked by Google,” explained Sheelagh. “As well, advert filtering programmes such as pop-up blockers will block the Analytics Javascript and prevent traffic from being tracked.”

She said the strong start is due to a broad range of things, but in particular the quality and mix of content.

“We’re running some really good stories and of course we can track what’s being read and where people are coming from.

“Clearly the figures are going to benefit future advertisers and sponsors. We believe we’re on the right track with our strategy and expect to see continued growth in coming months.” welcomes input and story ideas, as well as images. If you’ve think you’ve got a winning story, drop us a line at

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Category: Industry news

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