The Sentinel website continued to grow at a strong pace in 2011. Here’s a quick rundown of the year-end statistics:
We increased page views: 38,168,835 in 2012, up slightly from 38,090,454 in 2010.
In changing commenting systems in late 2010, we no longer required readers to make an extra click to get to story comments. We did away with more than 2.5 million page views because of it, but readers stayed on our pages longer, were more clearly responsible for their comments and our staff was better able to manage the abusive comments and spend more time on making the most of the news.
We increased unique annual visitors to 5,081,707. That’s up more than 1 million from 4,036,868 in 2010.
We think unique visitors is a better measure than page views in the past year (because the growth is bigger!) and because of the comment change. But data also shows that people are coming to the Sentinel on multiple devices. We launched an e-edition app for iPad in 2011 and we’re launching a news app in 2012.
We also had several big events (the tsunami and Capitola floods) and a couple of viral moments (a story about pot in soda) that brought in a healthy chunk of one-time visitors.
Through our Brightcove video account, we had 166,529 video plays. On YouTube, we had 519,501.
Video will become a bigger part of everything we do online as it becomes easier to upload, edit and share on mobile devices. We also added a GoPro camera at year’s end, and we hope to do cool things with it. Still seeking daredevils of all sorts to wear the camera.
We expect to continue to grow and continue to emphasize digital products in 2012.
Want to get more involved with the Sentinel website? We’ve got internships, a community connections section in development and we’re open to all kinds of collaborations to connect our audience with good ideas around Santa Cruz. Contact us!
Pifer, who is always at ease with new tools, programs, software and hardware, also designs pages, manages his staff, is asked to do a million things, and occasionally squeezes in extra time to write about the video game industry and its local connections.
He’s also got a rapidly evolving golf game – demonstrated here at Media Day for the AT&T Pro-Am:
Link of the Day: Digital producer Christina Gullickson gathered up a Storified account of the chatter among Niners fans yesterday. Highly entertaining reading as Niners fans got warmed up, ate, fretted, celebrated, but then suffered a loss just short of the Super Bowl. The good people of Storify posted the account at the top of their home page Sunday night.
We’re going to start using this blog to regularly highlight new things the Sentinel news staff is undertaking to expand its digital audience. We have hit a pace where new things are happening every day.
Longtime, award-winning reporter Jondi Gumz has recently joined twitter: @jondigumz. She’s regularly tweeting interesting news and links on everything from home prices to healthcare and Capitola.
The gear: A GoPro camera with a variety of straps and snap-on devices that will allow it to go far and wide. We sent it snowboarding in Tahoe on its first trip, which was a learning experience. We’re still trying to get some of the adhesive off of sports editor Julie Jag’s snowboard.
We’re going to keep taking the camera out, until we break it, sink it, lose it, or actually get some cool shots. Here’s our first effort. We’re learning, and we’ll keep adding to this playlist on YouTube. Want to take this camera to a skate park, zip line trip, around the world, or on a motorcycle ride or parachute jump? Let us know. We’re up for it, if you are willing to sign the right waivers.