Alexa.com does a neat trick. They track all the traffic to just about every site on the web. (Here’s the Related Info for: sethgodin.com/sg/blog/sethgodin.html).
So, it appears that sethgodin.com is about 47,000 on the hit list, but we peaked at about 12,000 (out of a billion sites!) last May.
Conventional wisdom would tell you that if I did search engine optimization and had the blog open daughter windows instead of changing your basic window, and, and, and, I could increase my traffic.
My guess is that for most sites, it doesn’t really matter that much.
1. The single best thing you can do is change the YIELD of your site, not its raw traffic. That means changing the site to increase the number of people who do what you want them to do, not dumping more people on a broken site.
2. The next best thing you can do is encourage visitors (subtly or not) to get like-minded folks to visit. Meetup.com, for example, has got that just right.
3. You can make the most of the visitors you have by getting permission, by giving visitors the ability to sign up for more info later.
I’ve never tracked my traffic, but I track all of three of these things quite closely. Maybe once I get them all right, I’ll bother to worry about raw numbers. In the meantime, I can’t help but notice that Tom Peters is about 50,000 behind me on the Alexa list, though he has a better reputation, sells more books, changes more lives and writes better than I do.
No matter what the folklore says, traffic doesn’t matter that much if the rest is broken.