Last week, the Tots 100 scores were released for May – despite me being off Social Media, and hardly blogging, I dropped around 10 places. I was baffled – there were so many people out there who’d put a lot more effort into their blogs, and feeding the social media machine, and there I was, high in the top 250 (out of about 8000) blogs. I didn’t deserve my score, not at all. I mentioned this on Twitter and got told that ‘blogs that have been in the Tots 100 for longer don’t really tend to fluctuate’ – which I found a bit bizarre.
You can seemingly build a blog up from nothing, get to the upper reaches, and then do nothing and STILL keep your place.
I’ve always been baffled about how the ranking works, there is a video somewhere on their site about how it’s all calculated, and how scores are worked out, which is fine in theory, but in practice – it just doesn’t work. The rankings don’t ever seem to be stable, a day or so after they are announced you’ll often find you’ll drop a few more places, or perhaps rise a few. This is because the calculations for someone else aren’t correct, and they are amended, making your place shift. Surely they should be left as is until next month, or perhaps more automation / error checking should be done before they are announce?
I feel a ranking system of blogs should be based on more than numbers and metrics, because there are so many wonderfully crafted, well written blogs out there that hardly get any readers, or any kind of publicity, and would have a low Tots score because of it. Yet a scan of the Top 100 blogs shows, well, to be honest a lot of crap – blogs filled to the rafters with shit competitions and reviews of a bar of soap. These kind of blogs will pull in readers and have jaw dropping metrics because, let’s be honest, ‘compers’ will enter a competition for anything and will RT any old shit. Google juice is important, of course it is – but – surely integrity is better?
Of course, I’m not tarring the upper echelons with the same brush, some of the blogs in the Top 100 are FABULOUS and deserve every reader and RT of a post they get.
Others REALLY don’t.
I feel uncomfortable being part of a system like this, I don’t really want my blog being lumped in with people who cheat the system and will sell their souls and integrity for a slightly higher place on Tots. It’s just not worth it. Why do longer standing blogs not fluctuate? Why can’t everything be reset each month? If a blogger has done nothing for their blog in that time, let them drop like a stone – if they want to get their place back – work for it!
Why can’t a blog be given merit on the quality of the content, or the creative way that it’s presented – not on how many pieces of shit they can give away, or how they can cheat the system.
I am sad to go, I do think that the Tots 100 has probably given me a more publicity, especially as there are so few ‘Daddy’ Bloggers out there, I’ve been a regular on the ‘Top 10 Daddy Bloggers’. I’d rather be somewhere in a ranking that celebrates good quality and content, rather than numbers and bullshit – of course, I’d never get very high based on that, but, maybe it’d make me aspire to be better.
Content is King. Always.
UPDATE – 24/06/14
So Sally from Tots 100 has kindly ‘responded’ in the Comments section – with this –
Thanks for posting. It’s always a challenge to get metrics right, but we have designed a system that balances new activity with old activity. Our belief is that what a blog does in a specific month is important – but so is having built a loyal audience and links over a period of years.
We strongly believe the best way to get a better ranking is to blog about what you enjoy, consistently, and focus on your content.
Ultimately, a ranking site isn’t for everyone, and we always say that if it’s not for you, we will remove a site, no questions asked. The great thing about the Internet is it’s big enough to ignore the things that don’t make you happy, and focus on the rest.
That said, we have more than 12,000 members of our sites, and fewer than 100 bloggers have asked to be removed in the past four years or so; many of those have since re-joined. We are delighted that most of our members feel the combination of opportunities, competitions, free conferences, social events and website content is of benefit to them, but of course constructive feedback is always appreciated.
What do you think?!