Internet Expansion. Websites versus Users

Since PoC began in 2007, about 6 years ago, the internet has changed a lot. It is always changing at a rapid rate. The direction of the growth graph is sharply upwards. The internet is growing at a rate that is faster than internet users think because users just see the sites they regularly visit and the ones they occasionally search for using Google or another search engine.

An internet user has a limited field of vision with respect to the internet unless they are researching information about the internet.

The interesting point is that the number of new websites is outstripping the number of new users. The chart below tells you by how much.

Number of Internet Users1023,000,000. This is just over one billion users or about 1 billion12,095 millions or about 2 billion1
The number of users has grown by a factor of about 2 over this time (100% increase)
Number of Active Websites46,800,0002366,800,0002The number of websites has grown by a factor of about 8 over this time (800% increase)

2013: 630 million websites online – I am told3

What does the chart tell us?

It means that all websites are liable to get less traffic (i.e they might and possibly will get less traffic). This is because of increased competition. Also Google has to find other websites and Google likes to bring in (find) new websites.

So, at the beginning, the first website by Sir Timothy John “Tim” Berners-Lee, OM, KBE, FRS, FREng, FRSA (his site was: received 100% of the internet traffic. It was No. 1 in the world. It is now the 11 thousandth most visited site which is amazingly good because it is of historical interest.  It is still a very small site. But it has dropped by a factor of 11 thousand – 11,000%

As the internet expanded each website received less traffic unless it expanded itself at a faster rate while maintaining quality. It is simply about competition and a dilution of the internet. An expansion of the internet is like adding more water to a orange flavored drink. It becomes more dilute.

This is interesting and significant for all websites and most importantly for websites owned and run by a single individual as a hobby, usually.

Websites managed by a single person cannot expand faster unless the person employs someone or more people. This means a change from hobby to business. Whereas, existing website businesses simply have to employ more people and create new ideas if they have the commitment and funding. It is about expanding with the internet. It is about business.

PoC is a leader. At one time (about 2009) it was the number one cat website by viewer hits. People also steal pictures from PoC and that is difficult to combat. This dilutes the benefits of PoC. I am not complaining. This is business and I accept it completely. I fight it too.

The question I ask myself is; “do I employ people?” Do I invest tens of thousands of dollars to expand PoC? PoC is remarkable in that is still does very well thanks to PoCers (thank you) and myself. However, it is gradually receiving less traffic. The quality has improved. The quantity is there. It is just not keeping pace with the frenetic expansion of the world wide web.



21 thoughts on “Internet Expansion. Websites versus Users”

  1. Michael, you have and are still doing a great job to cat welfare and cat owners/Fanciers.As a hobbyist blogger myself operating single without any support i understand your reasoning.Sometimes we readers have contributed personal experiences to “P.O.C” which does create a variation of topics.As the internet grows its natural for a competition among websites and “P.O.C” is definitely one of the best websites on cats. Its a relevant encyclopedia with opinion from its readers unlike a encyclopedia book which tends to get outdated over the years.

    • Thank you Rudolph. Your support is important to PoC. You know PoC gets quite a lot of visitors from India. It is one of the countries from which most visitors come.

  2. I always enjoy your articles Michael and love reading about Charlie and seeing his photos and also enjoy reading about other PoCers cats and seeing their photos and writing about our Walter and Jozef and our local cat rescues too.
    It’s a bit of light relief from the serious subject of cat abuse, including declawing, but I’m glad we can cover that too because after all the title usually warns if it’s going to be a harrowing article or not. I do write them and also read them all because I feel I have to, to be able to try to help to do something about it, but I know some people can’t bear to. But also I do know that these articles educate people who may not have realised they were not treating their cats properly. I do know also that PoC articles and posters have saved many cats claws even though sometimes people read them but don’t comment.
    One of your articles (about claws) for kids I posted a link to weeks ago on face book has popped up today, from Bret Glass of KatAWhack, he is always very good at sharing PoC links even though he doesn’t comment here.
    I don’t understand how web sites work, is every visit counted somehow? Do the number of comments count? (Apart from your 5 cents per comment I mean)
    There must be a lot more reading PoC who don’t comment because when things like competitions come up and articles like Marc’s charity Memorial to Red, many more comments come on from people who don’t usually comment.
    I think your question and advice articles went down well, eg the lady feeding her neighbour’s cats, should she be doing it? We commented on how we would handle it. Maybe someone doing a google search for information would follow a link to PoC question and answers? Cat people love to share their information and experiences with various situations.
    Just my thoughts ……

    • Thanks Ruth.

      Over the years PoC has got between 5,000 – 15,000 visitors per day. A lot. Up to 1 million pages seen in one month. PoCers are the important core but a tiny fraction of the total. Most people surf and browse and use information. They don’t want to create it. PoC has educated hundreds of thousands perhaps millions of people. Thanks to us all.

      I will try and get more personal stories. I just added the visitor input form to the base of my last article. Very few people want to formally share their experiences. Even at its peak PoC only got about four submissions per day and one of those would be no good.

  3. You have us as contributors, Michael, so you don’t need employees. Visitors can do more than comment, but actually add content. I think your old site, before the change, promoted that more. It certainly attracted me, because I wanted to share Monty’s story after reading what other visitors had written. I’ve got an article in the works for you, a story with a picture of a poor declawed kitty who lives at The Cat Network. The director of The Cat Network was very interested to know how we had met and she seemed surprised that it was just through your website. PoC is special and I enjoyed explaining to her how the regulars are truly a little community who get together (because of Michael) and discuss cats and everything else under the sun while inspiring each other to do more for our cats and more for cat welfare in general. PoC is as real and tightly knit a community as those of us who gather on a regular basis at The Cat Network.
    I visit PoC on my smartphone. The site looks the same as on my computer, but to see the list of new articles on the right side of my screen I click a button at the top that says “Full” and that widens my view to include the menu, otherwise you see just the page you are on and the list of current comments on the top. I hope that helps.

    • I miss all the personal stories too. We don’t see many of them anymore except from us. That’s how I found the site too. Perhaps a contest?

      MICHAEL CHECK YOUR EMAIL. I just sent you an article this article will go well linked into.

    • PoC would not be what it is without PoCers. So important to me. A massive contribution. My eternal thanks. I get a bit upset with the internet sometimes. It can be a cruel place.

      Thanks very much for the information. I, too, would like more personal stories. There are two reasons why there are less. At one time (3-4 years ago) the site got up to 1 million page view per month and about 15,000 visitors per day. This created the opportunity to get a contribution as very few people share. PoC gets less hits now so there is less opportunity.

      Also the input form is less good. However, it works well enough so it is not the reason. It is about hits really. I’ll see if I can put a link to an input form on each page.

      Thanks, too, for reassuring me about the smart phone and the way it looks. I am working on making the new post links more accessible by including a thumbnail image. I could make the page more phone friendly but a lot people will see it on iPads (tablets).

    • I have the idea of joining forces with other cat websites. Some really good ones are not doing as well as they should and I think we should try and join forces. I just don’t know the best way to do it even if it is a good idea.

      • Would it be possible to crosspost articles on each others social media page? Just as a start to see if that helps. You have a good audience on the Facebook group page and also any declawing articles can go on my group Declawing Veterinarians Should Be Blacklisted. There are over 1000 members now.

  4. It’s a problem Michael but I don’t think you would really like to invest thousands of dollars and employ people, would you?
    You ARE PoC, if ever we talk about you we always say Michael PoC, as if it’s your surname lol
    It wouldn’t be the same if you had employees, but if you decided to do that, I’d back you up of course.
    The question is how do we get more visitors for you? Babz and I post links to the articles here on face book to try to encourage people to come and comment.
    I thought your donating 5 cents a comment was a brilliant idea and more cat lovers would come and contribute comments knowing every one would help cat charities.
    Sometimes regulars just vanish, but why?
    Anyway good luck whatever you do, I still think PoC is the best cat site on the internet so hopefully it might pick up again soon.

    • Thanks Ruth. I value your support more than you know. I have no intention right now to employ someone. However, I do want PoC to continue to succeed. It is hard to see it falling back slightly despite all our efforts. I felt a need to explore that because it goes to the root of PoC. That is why I wrote the article. I think it is important to discuss these things sometimes. The internet is much tougher than visitors know.

    • Exactly, how DO we (I hope that I might be part of this wonderful family) get more visitors to Michael PoC’s website? This has been perplexing for some time. I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for all of you and Michael. You are family to me. BTW, Michael, I found your site through the VA system–a friend of mine, Jon, told me again and again that I needed to check out your website. I am grateful to him for that, and I’m very grateful to you and everybody who writes articles, comments. Well, except for “Woody.” 😀

      • Look, PoC still gets lots of traffic so no need to panic and I will never sell the site and never change the ethos of the site.

        I may change some things but there will be no changes that affect PoCers and which changes the basic concept: cat welfare and best pictures and information.

        I just felt that sharing my thoughts about it.

        • Michael I’ve been so busy and haven’t been able to comment – I will be back soon after I’ve had time to properly think about it. I guess you have to thin k simply about the process. If you can see a nice way for it to work with employment such that you still enjoy your day and PoC is still a pleasure and how you want it then you could think about it. What kind of jobs? Full time or part time – I mean to employ someone full time would be to double your capacity right off the bat.

          I’ll be back to commenting in a day or so 🙂

  5. Please mention global mobile-cellular usage, which, at 6.8 billion subscriptions currently, global cellular penetration has pretty much reached the saturation point. Michael, I’m not that familiar with webpage download figures on the mobile devices, as my cellphone service is limited (as is my phone–a wannabe-android, Net10 service, LG800 touchscreen) ??

      • Michael, that’s what I was trying to tell you; I don’t have a smartphone. just a wannabe due to my Net10 service provider. This Net10 service, btw, is owned and operated by Tracfone, and sometimes I can access the ‘net, but more than not I can’t. Those with true smartphones, Android os, iphone Apple OS, etc. will have to clue you in to that. wish that I could. Anyway, that’s why I mentioned the cellular visits to your site– Anybody?

        • I have a smart phone. The website comes up well, but unless you click on “FULL” you don’t get the side bar with all of the recent articles. That’s why I was so confused when you changed host companies and I couldn’t find anything. I didn’t know to hit the full link.

            • i knew Midnight would forget to sign out after using my phone. Don’t remove sidebar. We need that.

              And I’m the one to email you a story that will go nicely with this one. Midnight too into herself to write these days 🙂


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