The Summer Slump
Submitted by WizToast on June 17, 2007 - 18:45
I've had at least a few thousand readers for at least three years now. In that time, I've noticed that there are distinct patterns of website traffic every year that roughly correspond to the time high school and college students are in school. That is to say, September through Mid December and Mid January through May tend to be high growth periods. Summer tends to bring stagnation, slow growth, or even traffic loss. The winter holidays bring a brief but steep traffic drop.
This is a fairly well documented phenomenon for webmasters at large. Google "The Summer Slump" and you'll find plenty of discussions about the way summer affects website traffic. Most of what I've read suggests that typical websites that do not provide summer-specific content can expect to drop 15-50 percent in traffic and sales. The small silver lining is that this is true virtually across the board. So at least companies purchasin ads are willing to pony up higher rates, since their sales and traffic flow are slowing as well.
As an Internet group that generates a lot of its revenue of ad sales and t-shirts (i.e. non-essentials), it strikes me that we should be even more concerned than most webmasters.
Yet, for some reason, I've had trouble finding even a scrap of information of this phenomenon as it pertains to webcomics.
A quick check of Project Wonderful shows that other creators are probably experiencing a slow down much like mine, and I was hoping some of you out there could chime in with your experiences with the summer slump, and what (if anything) can be done to combat it.