Top Extension Stories and Website Trends From 2019

— Written By Mike Vysocka
en Español / em Português

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We had another strong year on the web in 2019. Collectively, our sites served 8.07 million pageviews to 2.6 million people, which is right in stride with our numbers from last year. More likely than not, our total pageviews probably would have increased this year, if not for a simple navigation change we made in the Spring (when we changed our “Topics” link at the top of our pages to “Topic Portals“). Inevitably, the term “portal” was probably too proprietary of a term for our public users and didn’t resonate well with them. What is a portal anyway? Fortunately, we were able to pinpoint the decrease in traffic with reasonable certainty and reverted the change after a few short weeks.

Looking for our 2018 Web Report?

We Doubled Our Mailchimp Subscribers

2019: 55,445 (Wow!)
2018: 26,332
2017: 11,000

Most Visited Websites of 2019

There are many metrics by which to measure a website’s success, these lists are based solely on the number of pageviews received in 2019. For County sites,  looking at our most popular Topic Portals can help you plan and focus your content strategy for 2020.

County Sites Topic Portals
  1. Pender (243K)
  2. Chatham
  3. Catawba
  4. Wilkes
  5. Sampson
  6. Lee
  7. Pitt
  8. Guilford
  9. Gaston
  10. Lenoir
  1. TurfFiles (583K)
  2. Industrial Hemp
  3. Growing Small Farms
  4. N.C. 4-H
  5. Gardening
  6. Entomology
  7. Official Variety Testing
  8. Extension Gardener
  9. Equine Husbandry
  10. New Crops & Organics

Most Popular Posts Written in 2019

  1. How to Harvest and Dry Hemp for CBD Production (Catawba)
  2. How to Determine Female and Male Hemp Plants (Industrial Hemp)
  3. Annual Bluegrass (Poa Annua) Spring Invasion (TurfFiles)
  4. 2019 Eastern Carolina Showmanship Circuit (Edgecombe)
  5. 2019 4-H Farm Credit Showmanship Circuit (Randolph)
  6. Predicting the Start of the Pine Pollen Season (Forestry)
  7. Industrial Hemp Production – Pest Management (Catawba)
  8. New York City-Day Trip (Currituck)
  9. 2019 State 4-H Livestock Contest Results (Youth Livestock)
  10. 2019 4-H Summer Camps (Nash)

Most Popular Posts Overall in 2019

  1. How to Harvest and Dry Hemp for CBD Production (Catawba) – 83K
  2. Hemp Connections (Industrial Hemp)
  3. Weeds in Turf (TurfFiles)
  4. Planting Sources (Seeds, Clones, Transplants) (Industrial Hemp)
  5. NC Tree Identification (Gardening)
  6. Why Does Moss Grow in Areas of My Lawn and Not My Grass?
  7. Hemp Production – Keeping THC Levels Low (Catawba)
  8. What Is a Green Tomato? Unripe Red or Its Very Own Variety?? (Lenoir)
  9. Advantages of Crop Rotation (Wilkes)
  10. When Is the Best Time to Use Weed and Feed Fertilizers? (Wilkes)

Most Popular Factsheets in 2019

  1. Grafting and Budding Nursery Crop Plants 
  2. 1. Soils and Plant Nutrients 
  3. Plant Propagation by Stem Cuttings 
  4. Coccidiosis, the Most Common Cause of Diarrhea in Young Goats 
  5. Carolina Lawns: A Guide to Maintaining Quality Turf in the Landscape
  6. Are There Alternatives to Glyphosate for Weed Control in Landscapes?
  7. Central North Carolina Planting Calendar for Annual Vegetables, Fruits, and Herbs
  8. Plant Propagation By Layering
  9. Tall Fescue Lawn Maintenance Calendar
  10. Lawns

If you’re interested in obtaining the web analytics for a specific WordPress page / post or Extension Factsheet for 2019 (and the past 5 years), you can do so by copying and pasting the link into our Google Analytics By URL tool.

Other Interesting Tidbits

Mobile usage increased again this year, accounting for more than 50% of all visits, about 7% used a tablet, and the remaining 43% were desktop users. This is one of our most compelling reasons to stop creating PDFs! They’re not mobile-friendly!

We added 132 factsheets in 2019 — check out the full publication repository.

After setting record numbers for feedback coming in last year, we finally stopped curating it weekly and integrated the live Feedback report in WordPress Admin.

  • We tallied 20,898 votes for “Was this content helpful?” in 2019
  • 87% said YES, it was helpful
  • 2,878 explanations came in with those votes (63% attached to a YES vote)

Our “You might also like…” content suggestion feature also generated an additional 66,925 clicks to content the reader may not have found on their own.

We created a nifty little script that scans your content for exact “Genus species” combinations that exist in our Plants Database and then “auto-magically” links your content to the corresponding plant detail page and provides context when the user mouses-over the Genus species text. See the script in action.