Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Brick Bucket 2015 recap

Hello! Somewhat amazingly, it's time for me to write the second post of this kind: a look back at The Brick Bucket's past year. 2016 will mark this humble blog's third year of operation, and I have plenty of changes planned going forward - but of course The Brick Bucket will remain fundamentally the same as it has been for the last two years: a blog dedicated to the LEGO hobby and the beautiful creations built by the hobbyists. 

Let's start off the 2015 recap with a look at the top 10 most popular posts, by pageview count, on the blog this year. 

Most popular posts
  1. Nexo Knights set images and analysis!
  2. Iron Maiden
  3. Summer 2015 set reveal masterpost
  4. This in-depth review of terrible LEGO clone brands is the funniest thing you'll read all week
  5. The Force Awakens set images and analysis
  6. Brick Bucket Review #6: 75099 Rey's Speeder
  7. A slick spacetruck
  8. The faceless mecha
  9. Bad things come in threes
  10. Come closer to the light...
The top posts were dominated by set previews, in which we examined freshly revealed sets to look at interesting new pieces and techniques. The Nexo Knights preview, analyzing LEGO's big and brand new theme (just barely out now!) was a no-contest for the most-viewed post: three times as popular as #2 and responsible for almost 4% of The Brick Bucket's total pageviews all-time!

Hype for The Force Awakens also featured strongly, with the top 10 containing both a preview of the sets and a review of 75099 Rey's Speeder by Dead Frog Inc. 

...which brings me to my next point, and one of the blog's most important developments in 2015: the addition of three new bloggers!

A new crew
In 2015, The Brick Bucket was transformed from a one-man operation to a four-man blog team. First, in June, we welcomed Dead Frog Inc., formerly of The Brick Tavern. (He's also responsible for our flashy new logo!) Then, not even a month later, Aaron Van Cleave, aka A Plastic Infinity, joined us, bringing zany commentary and plenty of emoticons. Finally, September saw the arrival of Thomas of Tortuga

Having a team - small as it is - has helped our output. You may notice that we have fewer posts in 2015 than in 2014, even though the blog wasn't even created until May 2014! I haven't been able to post as much due to all the normal teenager reasons - school, sports, etc., and I imagine the same is true for my co-bloggers. But we went for quality over quantity, and as any look through the year's posts will show you, the MOCing community had a hell of a year, making it a joy to blog all the amazing builds that were produced. 

Most popular MOCs and builders
In terms of pageviews, the most popular MOC we featured this year was the microscale ship "Iron Maiden" by Sean and Steph Mayo (Siercon and Coral), made for Iron Builder. View the post here

Sean and Steph were part of a three-way tie for our third-most blogged builder, along with vitroleum and Kosmas Santosa (KOS brick), all of whom had 4 posts each. Second place was another three-way tie, between 6kyubi6, Rancorbait, and Tyler Clites (Legohaulic), with 5 posts each. 

But our single most-blogged builder this year was the unstoppable nobu_tary, whose excellent and prolific work garnered him 6 Brick Bucket posts this year! Use the search bar in the sidebar over there ---> to see them all. 

Traffic sources and audiences
The top 10 most popular visiting countries were much the same as last year's:
  1. United States
  2. United Kingdom
  3. Germany
  4. France
  5. Canada
  6. Australia
  7. Russia
  8. the Netherlands
  9. Italy
  10. Poland
Canada moved up considerably in the rankings, while Portugal and Turkey dropped out entirely, replaced by the Netherlands and Italy. The top four countries remain unchanged from 2014. 

More info
- Average posts per month this year: 14
- Total posts this year: 167
- Pins on our Pinterest board this year: 201
- Most popular Pin: once again, Tuna the Phelfie Dog

(Don't forget to follow our aforementioned Pinterest board as well as our Twitter!)

Ads (and building contests?)
Another important development for us in 2015 was that we started running ads in the sidebar. They don't generate much revenue, since I designed them to be as unobtrusive as possible, but any money we make will go towards site maintenance or towards prizes for contests! Yes, the idea has been put forth many times in our group chat, and we would like to host at least one building contest here in 2016. But more on that as it develops...

In conclusion...
If you read this blog regularly, you've heard all this from me before, but here's a big thank you not just to my readers, but to all members of the LEGO community, who build such creative and amazing models and make browsing Flickr for MOCs to blog so enjoyable. All of us here at The Brick Bucket wish all of you the best of luck in your building. Happy New Year and Leg Godt

No comments: