In Blog Exercises: Trackbacks and Blog Exercises: Backlinks you learned about trackbacks, the automatic process of a site linking to yours and generating a comment-like notification to alert you of the link to your article, and helping your readers discover what others are saying about your article.
In this Blog Exercises it is time to do a check-up on how trackbacks are working for you.
Go to your Comments panel on the WordPress Administration Panels. Do a search for [..] in the search form.
All of the results should feature comments proceeded by […], the default for trackbacks in WordPress and other publishing platforms as the trackback “comment” is often in the middle of a sentence and an excerpt of text around the trackback link.
Begin by noticing the count number of the search results. I currently have over 11,532 trackbacks on 3,000 posts. Do the math and if each post had a trackback, that’s the equivalent of about 4 trackbacks per post. That isn’t how it works as I have 307 trackbacks on one post alone, but it might help you get a different perspective on your trackbacks.
Go through your trackbacks. While double-checking for spam trackbacks, pay close attention to what the trackbacks are saying about your content, and which posts are getting the most trackbacks.
There is much you can learn from this type of feedback. It helps you identify the water-cooler topics that people like and link to on your site. It helps you to know what others are saying about you and what you publish on your site.
What else can you learn by doing this trackback check-up? How does this change your blogging going forward?
Remember to include a hat tip link back to this post to create a trackback, or leave a properly formed link in the comments so participants can check out your blog exercise task.