Readers flock to PeeDeePost.com in 2014

Staff report

ROCKINGHAM — The Pee Dee Post, Richmond County’s only seven-day-a-week news source, finished 2014 by averaging more than 40,000 readers each month.

The numbers are from May 1 through Dec. 31, as PeeDeePost.com was launched on April 28. Even figuring a year-low of 10,232 unique visitors in the first full month that was May, the average is 40,094 readers each month. Over the eight-month period, readers averaged more than 2 million page views each month — specifically, 2,055,189.75.

This graph shows the number of monthly unique visitors (orange column) and page views (dark blue) for PeeDeePost.com from April 28 through Dec. 31, 2014.

This graph shows the number of monthly unique visitors (orange column) and page views (dark blue) for PeeDeePost.com from April 28 through Dec. 31, 2014.

“The numbers look even better if you take out the start-up month of May,” said Kevin Spradlin, managing editor. “Looking at June through December, the monthly average for unique visitors jumps to 44,360 readers.”

The number of page views continued its monthly upward trend in December, reaching a yearly high of 3,223,402 page views. That’s up from 458,323 page views in May.

“I continue to be positively floored by the readers’ loyalty to The Pee Dee Post,” Spradlin said. “It’s more than I could ever have anticipated and I’m grateful for the support — and story tips — from readers, businesses and contributors alike. I can’t wait to see what happens in 2015 because, honestly, we’re still only in the beginning stages — phase one of many.”

Spradlin was admittedly concerned when preparing to view the December data. That’s because October and November had shown two consecutive months of decreases in the number of unique visitors since the record-setting September of 68,739.

“Time and again since September, I’ve said that month was an aberration and I fully expect to find a ‘normal’ of around 35,000 unique visitors each month,” Spradlin said. “I was wrong. December went up and even including that first month of May, we’re still over the 40,000 mark — or 14.2 percent higher than expected.”

On the news side, Dec. 2, 3, 4, 17 and 29 each drew a minimum of 9,000 readers.

“I expected the numbers to be comparatively low towards the end of the month,” said Spradlin, who has 20 years in the newspaper industry. ” In my experience, this is typically a slower time of the year, which leaves more time for reporters to do ‘soft’ stories. We did that, and as usual they aren’t as well read. But the Post covered two house fires as the flames were burning in the last week of December — life-changing events not covered by any other media outlet in the county, but both of which were picked up from the Post by much larger media outlets.”

Dec. 29 happened to be the fledgling website’s fourth-busiest day of the year with 10,023 unique visitors.

The Post was first in Richmond County on stories 2 and 3 and had the exclusive on 1, 4, 5 and 6.
“It was a great way to end 2014,” Spradlin said.
Filed in: Announcements, Business, Featured News, Latest Headlines, News, Rockingham

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