Oakland Local’s traffic has basically exploded since the redesign of the site and some tweaks to our editorial approach. We had the number of visits double between April and June, and the number of unique visitors go up by 60% Our time spent metrics, on average, went from 1:49 minutes to 2.26 minutes and the number of visitors who came directly to our home page almost doubled.

Given that our percentage of new visits remained generally the same–as did our top referral sources–our old friends Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo! and SF Gate, pretty much-–it seems evident that the rise in our metrics is from you, dear reader, coming to the site more often and looking at more pages when you visit.

Wow, does that feel good!

We’ve also seen the number of Facebook likes for stories go up–a few weeks ago, we were thrilled if a story got 900 views, yet in the past few weeks we’ve had stories on Facebook that had over 5,000 views–and many that had between 1,500 and 3,000 views–numbers we would have found extraordinary a few months ago.

What does this mean for you?

  • We’re doing a better job delivering stories you want to read
  • You’re having an easier time navigating around the site and finding things to read
  • You spend more time on the site because it is SO MUCH EASIER to comment

What does it mean for us?

  • We’re glad you’re having a better experience (and we’re doing a consistently better job)
  • We have more to offer sponsors, marketing partners and advertisers
  • We want to hear what you’d like to see more of–and what you’re enjoying the most right now

As a news non-profit, we rely on grants, sponsorships, advertising & marketing to cover our costs, which including paying editors, writers, marketers, and interns. Many people work for Oakland Local for way below their market rate, because they believe in what we’re all doing–but they still need to pay their bills, just like you.

If you like us, support us

That means that we need your help to keep going, just like any local small business. If you value Oakland Local, consider giving us $10 a month, like the wonderful Marion Baldwin does; or making a tax-deductible one-time donation. (HINT: DONATE HERE)

Or, contract with us for high-quality advertising and marketing services for your event, business, or program–we will work had to do a good job and get you GREAT results.

Here’s the top 5 stories from the past week:

And a great bonus video from the talented Hodari Davis and Young, Gifted and Black,  who are trying to get some kids to Ghana —

Young Gifted and Black is a repertory group that uses poetry and rap to teach African American History. Based in Oakland, California the group has performed extensively throughout the Bay Area, and overseas in Europe and Africa. Here they are premiering a unique song about ending violence in the streets of Oakland. The name of the song is “Don’t Shoot” and is written by YGB Artistic Director Hodari Davis


About The Author

Susan Mernit is editor & publisher of Oakland Local (oaklandlocal.com) a news & community hub for Oakland, CA. A former VP at AOL & Netscape, & former! Yahoo Senior Director, Mernit was consulting program manager for The Knight News Challenge, 2008-09; was a 2012 Stanford Carlos McClatchy Fellow; and is a board adviser to The Center for Health Reporting at USC, Annenberg School of Journalism. She has consulted with many non-profit organizations on strategy, product development and social media/engagement, including Salon.com, TechSoup Global, Public Radio International and the Institute for Policy Studies/Economic Hardship Reporting Project, led by Barbara Ehrenreich.

One Response

  1. Laroilyn Davis

    Thank you for featuring the video of Young, Gifted and Black performing at the Malcolm X Festival. We are committed to representing Oakland and all of the extraordinarily gifted children in our city with truth, knowledge, and respect.


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