Sunday, 5 September 2010

Spikes of popularity

The BBC series 'Undiscovered Britain' featured a long segment tonight on Kearvaig, a beautiful beach on the Parph in the very northwest of Scotland. I had a look at the live logs on my website and the hitrate went up massively - over 100 people accessed the site in a couple of minutes, and all were going to the same two pages - walks and To put this into perspective, I usually get about 1,000 distinct visitors a day.

The reason for this spike in visitors? I have the first hit on Google for 'Kearvaig' and the common mis-spelling 'Kervaig' (*).

This is obviously good for me, as it pushes more people to my website, and hopefully a few may stop for a while.  However, it is also slightly concerning. Kearvaig and the nearby Sandwood Bay are stunningly beautiful places, even in bad weather, and part of that beauty is down to their very inaccesibility. Programmes like this may encourage more people to go there and spoil it. But worse, it is a tough area. People die up there - literally, and a journey should not be undertaken lightly. Then again I can hardly complain too much, as the whole point of my website is to encourage people to visit places around this wonderful country.

I have noticed such spikes in popularity in the past, but this is the first time I have actually seen it happen live (indeed, I anticipated it happening and watched the logs as the spike built up and then retreated).

(*) I say uncommon, but local sources use both, and the name appears spelt in several different ways on OS maps over the years. And no, I cannot pronounce it properly.

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