Graphs and Charts and Survey Results… Oh My!

posted by Andrea | 06/13/2014

survey results

Today’s post has been a long time coming…

Remember WAY back in February when I shared my plans for working and blogging after Simon was born? Remember that I also asked you to fill out a little survey related to what you do and don’t love about my blog?

Well, in case you didn’t notice, Simon is here and I’m still blogging away :)

I’ve spent a good amount of time looking over the results… and I’m finally getting around to sharing them.

Not surprisingly, some of the information was stuff I already knew or assumed. Like the fact that almost 100% of my readers are women, that “Organization” is the most-loved category on my blog, that “Blogging and Business” is the least-loved category, and that over 80% of you follow along on Facebook!

Fun Fact: out of the 2000+ people who took the survey, only 5 were men. One of those was Dave (he took it to make sure everything worked) and two of them were “Kate” and “Beth” who, I’m guessing, accidentally checked the wrong box. So a BIG thank-you to the TWO men who took my survey!

However, there was also some information that really caught me by surprise — like the fact that my Frugal and Budgeting posts are actually even more popular than my organizing posts when you consider both the “loves” and the “likes” (see graphs below for more information).

Also, the fact that almost 80% of you are reading via tablet or smart phone at least part or all of the time. This probably means I should look into making my site a little more “mobile friendly”.

I’m already talking with my tech guys about this. We’ll see what we can come up with!

ipad

All in all, the survey was VERY informative for me — thanks again to those of you who took time out of your day to share your thoughts. You are all so kind! 

I won’t bore you with all the details from every single answer; but here are some of the statistics below.

{you may click on the photos to enlarge them}

post topics

I found it extremely interesting that for almost all of the main categories on my blog, there are approximately 85 – 95% of people who either “like” or “love” the posts in that category.

The only outlier is the “Blogging + Business” category. Apparently, less than 60% of you “like” or “love” that category — which actually makes me smile because over the past year or so, that’s the category I least enjoy writing for!

more graphs

There’s one thing I wanted to mention about giveaways:

I don’t do nearly as many giveaways as I used to — but even still, many of you requested international giveaways versus the “U.S.A. 18 and older only giveaways” — but as far as I know, I’m not legally able to offer my giveaways to anyone outside the US unless I personally pay for everything that’s being given away.

I’ve talked with a lawyer about this — as well as several other bloggers — and there are certain legal restrictions about lotteries, contests, and giveaways that could potentially get me in a boat load of trouble if I opened my giveaways up to other countries. I honestly don’t understand it all — but that’s the ONLY reason I can’t offer giveaways to all of you living outside the US.

I feel bad about this and I’m certainly not trying to purposely leave anyone out. But unless I want to shell out the dough for all the giveaways (which unfortunately I don’t want to do!) I legally can’t open them to international readers.

SO SORRY!

Nora is upset about it too :)

Although I gleaned tons of useful information from this survey, I think the answer I’m MOST proud of is the fact that less than 1% of you said you’ve had trouble navigating my site to find the information you need or want.

I’ve worked REALLY hard to make my site super easy to navigate.

I have post summaries on my home page, quick links to various pages and posts in my side bar, a handy search bar in the blue menu bar, an organized “virtual recipe box” with all my recipes in one convenient location, a super simple archives page, and even a page with all my different categories listed out for easy reference. I’ve paid my tech guys a lot of money to create these navigational systems — so I’m glad they are working for all (or at least almost all) of you!

My goal has always been to make the content on my blog as simple and as organized as possible — because what’s the point of writing about simplicity and organization if readers can’t find what they are looking for?

And seriously, if you’re not using the search bar on my site — start! You’d be amazed how accurate the results are. Chances are that if you can’t find something by searching, it’s because I don’t have information about that topic on my site yet (sorry!)

search bar

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I was initially hesitant to create this survey (and allow it to be anonymous) because I feared it might turn into an open invitation for criticism. So often, the people who contact me are doing so to tear me down, to complain about something I’ve written, or to tell me why I’m wrong / bad / mean / horrible / etc. and I wondered if this anonymous survey would be one more opportunity for negativity.

I’m an extremely confident person with pretty “thick skin”, but there are still days when I catch myself wondering if it’s really worth ALL the hours and effort I put into this blog on a daily and weekly basis. After all, if people are just going to complain, why bother… right?

Thankfully though, I was completely blown away by the thousands of positive responses to this survey!

In fact, I copied and pasted your comments in free response section into a Word document to make them easier to read — and there were over 100 pages of text in tiny, 10pt. font!

There was a fair amount of constructive criticism — which I honestly do appreciate. And of course, there was a tiny percentage (less than 1%) of people who were needlessly negative, but the overwhelming majority of the responses were so refreshingly positive I couldn’t help but smile the entire time I read through them!

Obviously, I don’t expect everyone to love, or even like, every topic on my blog — it’s just unfortunate that often times, the less-than-1% group makes their voices heard over the other 90+% group. Or maybe it’s just that the nasty words stick with us more? (I think this statistic is true in most of life, not just in my own blogging experience.)

Either way, the comments you left me on this survey were a breath of fresh air. They renewed my excitement for my blog and helped me realize that I have made a difference in so many homes and lives around the world.

Thank-you, thank-you!

Little-by-little, I read through ALL 100+ pages of comments and free responses.There were so many kind, friendly, and encouraging words from all of you — they really just made my day (and week, and month!)

I looked forward to reading a few more each day and smiling all the way through, even if Simon was crying on my lap or Nora was begging for yet another snack. Oh wait, my kids don’t do that :)

enjoying the outside

As of right now, I’m not planning any major site changes or renovations in the near future; however I am hoping to make a few cosmetic “tweaks” over the summer as I’ll hopefully have a bit more free time with Dave around all day.

I’ll keep you posted if anything major comes up; but in the mean time, feel free to let me know of any changes, tweaks, or ideas you have to improve my site.

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I’d like to end this post with one of my favorite comments from the survey. I think it sums up what I’m really going for here on my blog — whether I portray it with each post is a different story. I’m just glad that at least one person is ‘getting it’ :)

I guess I come to your blog more for YOU than just what you have to say. There’s a no-nonsense, fresh, practicality about what you write…

Whatever you write, just keep it up. Keep up the sweet realness. Keep hacking away at our tendency to wear masks and compare ourselves to others. Keep reminding me that how I choose to arrange my closet or pantry is only that and nothing more — that it’s not some kind of sign about how homey or how artistic or how loving I am. Keep sanding down family heirlooms and painting them red. Keep shrugging your shoulders and refusing to change your bedsheets when they don’t need it.

Your blog is one of the best homemaking tools I’ve gotten online. Thank you so much for it!

Thanks again for your consistent encouragement.

I can’t tell you how awesome it is to get emails, messages, and comments from those of you who are successfully implementing my organizing ideas, making my recipes for people you love, utilizing my free printables to simplify your life, following along with all our farmhouse renovations, and loving my children from afar.

YOU are one of the best parts of this blog!

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27 comments

  1. Jenny

    06/13/2014

    Great post. I am so glad you got the results you wanted from your blog. I have commented many times and even emailed you personally(and always got a response). I agree wholeheartedly with the comment you posted above. She is right, that is why i LOVE your blog. You don’t make anyone feel like your way is the only way. You are a “real” person. I don’t remember if you asked the age range on that survey. I am a 41 year old mom of 5 and I find your posts so helpful. And almost weekly i use your search to find a recipe, how you redid a dresser, or where you found one of your “favorite things”.

    Keep up the good work. I love your blog and it is the first one i check every day, whether it is my day off or a day I work. Love it.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Jenny!
    I did ask the age — it was an optional question so not all readers answered — but about 80% of my readers are ages 28-50. I realize that’s a large age-group (I added a few categories together to get that number) but you fall nicely into that 80% :)

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  2. Julie Spady

    06/13/2014

    Oh jeeeze…you are so cute and funny…that makes it easy to like you without knowing you! I’ve loved your blog for a long time. I’m 60 and even when your topics don’t apply to me they are fun to read! And the work that people have done to organize your blog win!! Yours is awesome to navigate!!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Julie — glad you’ve enjoyed (and been able to easily navigate) my blog!

    [Reply]

  3. Steph

    06/13/2014

    Hello! Canadian reader here. I really enjoy your site, your ideas and your writing… I read it every day! So I have a question: I live quite close to the Minnesota border. I was wondering if I might enter your contests and have my address as the border store’s address (we often ship things this way and just go pick it up when it arrives). Not sure if that would work, but I just thought I would ask! (though I rarely win anything anyway). Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Hey Stephanie — I think this would be fine. Again, I’m not 100% positive WHY I can’t offer giveaways to international readers — but I’m guessing that if you had a US shipping address, that would work!

    [Reply]

  4. Barb

    06/13/2014

    Yes, I agree wholeheartedly with the reader comment you posted at the end of today’s blog. That is why yours is by far my favorite blog post.. :) I feel like you are a friend I can meet with every Mon-Friday, and I have gained much through your ideas in running a household and organizing. {My children are all grown…..I could have used your post back then!}

    [Reply]

  5. Deni

    06/13/2014

    Your blog is the first I read everyday! I know that at 8 am sharp, I will get some encouragement and motivation for the day. I REALLY love how frugal you are, and how you can save money to purchase the things that make a difference. Every recipe that I have tried, every organization and budgeting tip has always worked! Thank you for being yourself, and making the best with what you have. That’s what we all need to strive for. I have learned so much from you, and I thank you so much!!!

    [Reply]

    Paulette Smith Reply:

    I do the same Deni! Every morning at 8 Andrea’s blog is the first I read! And I’ve used her organizing tips, recipes, cleaning tips, cleaner recipes…if she says it works, it works! She’s so real! 61 year old reader here. Wish I had her advice when I was younger!!!

    [Reply]

  6. Leanne Heern

    06/13/2014

    you are hands down one of my favorite bloggers! I’ve gotten so much great, practical, and DO-ABLE advice and ideas from your blog! love it! I love my Lowe’s Adirondack chairs, using the inside of my cabinets for keeping important papers and recipes, my prairieland herb healing wand, and my post-it notes!! you inspire me as a mother of 3 to keep the “main thing”, the “main thing”!!
    Thank you!! you are a blessing!!

    [Reply]

  7. Julia K

    06/13/2014

    Had to laugh at everyone”s comment about andreadekker.com being their first read of the day ! I am a 51 year old avid follower from Australia. It’s 4.30 am here and I just woke up – and what am I doing ? Straight to andreadekker.com ! Haven’t even had a cuppa yet !
    Because of the USA/Aussie time difference – I can sometimes catch your update before I go to bed.
    Leanne Heern said it so well “you inspire me as a mother to keep the main thing the main thing”.
    Go girl !

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    haha — well glad to give you something nice to wake up to (or read before bed). Thanks for your kind words.

    [Reply]

  8. Debbie

    06/13/2014

    Yes, your blog seems to have something interesting to read. I definitely like that you post on Facebook because that’s how I link to your blog. This small thing saves me time from the beginning of the day already since I scan my newsfeed on Facebook on a daily basis. I’m usually getting great ideas from your blog whether it be recipes, cleaning supplies, or organizing ideas. Great job!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Debbie — and thanks for following via Facebook too!

    [Reply]

  9. Alyssa

    06/13/2014

    I am one of the large percentage of people who love everything you write and read your posts religiously. The only negative thought I’ve had, EVER, is that when I get the posts via e-mail, the font is teeny tiny and really hard to read. When I pull up the same post in my browser, everything is fine. It happens regardless of the browser or computer I’m using and I don’t have the issue with any of the hundred or so other e-mails I get a day. I even tried auto-forwarding the posts to an address I have with another provider (gmail instead of hotmail) and no luck. I’m curious if anyone else has had similar issues?

    Anyway, aside from this one minor, aesthetic issue, I do love your blog and am so glad I discovered it almost 2 years ago. I’ve gotten so many tips, recipes, ideas, etc… that it’s hard to keep count! Keep up the good work and don’t listen to the negative Nancys out there. There are more of us than there are of them!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Aw thanks Alyssa!!

    And yes, I know the email font is tiny. I’ve tried a few things to fix it but nothing works. Sorry! If you just click through to the blog, you can read it in much larger font :)

    [Reply]

  10. Meg

    06/13/2014

    Good point, Debbie! Facebook is also my reminder to go to your blog. It surprises me how few bloggers take advantage of this! They could double their blog readers with a post on FB! I am glad to hear people didn’t send you negative comments! Or as many as you thought they might. No matter how confident a person, no one wants to read a nasty email and be criticized

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Oh good — glad you’re finding me via Facebook! Sometimes Facebook can be so “mean” and not show my posts to people who are following me :(

    [Reply]

  11. eva

    06/13/2014

    andrea ..
    Although I do not speak English, his blog I read always translated into my language, Spanish .. I want to thank you for your wonderful blog has changed my world, I would say that is the only blog I read daily as awake. . despite being so different nationalities, it’s funny and you could find what I always wanted, a clean house, organized, how to save money. to be more careful with the world, having more free time and therefore have more peace and quiet in my daily life, I am a housewife and mom of 2 .. besides my husband .. Thanks for always.
    Ms. eva ..

    [Reply]

  12. Dina

    06/14/2014

    I do love your blog….the organizational tips and simplifying our cleaning (“Do it Now”) are helpful especially since I just let my cleaning lady go! And I feel bad that my only comment on your site so far has been critical of your tips for new moms! So consider this a way to let you know that even tho I didn’t agree with that one, I do appreciate most of your posts. And your Delicious Baked Sandwiches have become my family’s new favorite!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Dina! and no worries on the potentially critical comment :) I don’t remember many individual comments by author anyway so I’m sure I never would have recognized your name and associated with the previous comment!

    I’m super glad you tried those baked sandwiches. We actually just had them for dinner 2 nights ago — delish!

    [Reply]

  13. Janice

    06/14/2014

    I TOTALLY agree with that survey comment you quoted at the end of your post .

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks so much Janice!

    [Reply]

  14. Jen

    06/15/2014

    I don’t even see any of the ads because I have AdBlock Plus enabled, so they definitely don’t bother me. :) I do like the blogging and business posts more than a lot of other readers, I think. But the organization posts are my favorites, too.

    [Reply]

  15. Gervy

    06/15/2014

    I am an Australian reader -discovered your blog a couple of months ago. I love your blog. It’s the only organization-type site I’ve found which seems realistic instead of crazy Pinterest-type stuff. I completely agree with the commenter you highlighted in your post. I really appreciate how real and honest you are about motherhood – I think you provide a very valuable public service to mothers everywhere!

    [Reply]

  16. Eliza

    06/17/2014

    I am a new Australian reader and I am loving your website. I am due to start maternity leave in a few months and the plan is for me to stay at home until our kids are in school. You have gotten me even more inspired and enthusiatic to start my new career. I will definately be tuning in on a regular basis.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Eliza — and congrats on the new baby. I LOVE that you talk about motherhood as your “new career” — I’m sure you will be fabulous!

    [Reply]

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