Tim Selwyn at Tumeke! and Scrubone at Halfdone both do a great job of providing useful lists of New Zealand blog stats. So, in a way I’m standing on the shoulders of giants producing a new list focused exclusively on New Zealand-based WordPress.com sites. My aim is to learn more about the way WordPress.com is used by New Zealanders (and WordPress.org as well but that’s another story).

Tumeke and Halfdone update their lists each month. I haven’t decided yet, how often this list will be updated. Stay tuned.

The two general lists use different formulae to rank sites in order of popularity. Tumeke’s list shorter, but more comprehensive and can be considered as much as a directory as a popularity list. The Halfdone rankings are based on traffic rankings.

Both use data from Alexa. I’m slightly dubious about Alexa because my understanding is it measures traffic using a toolbar which some people install as a browser add-on. Given the number of Alexa toolbar users is only a tiny fraction of all internet users, this make for a small sample size. A small sample size isn’t an issue for measuring the major web sites — and possibly the top half dozen or so New Zealand blogs — but Alexa is a crude instrument for measuring sites where the weekly traffic is measured in the hundreds or low-thousands. I could be wrong about this, let me know in the comments if I’ve misunderstood how it works.


Here I’ve taken the Halfdone list and extracted the sites that have recognisable WordPress.com addresses. Halfdone ranks 199 sites. Of these 99 use Blogspot, 38 use WordPress.com, eight use Typepad and 54 either use a different technology or have domain name redirection (see the pie chart). I suspect at least some of these use either WordPress.com or WordPress.org technology.

As you can see, Blogspot dominates the New Zealand scene. I’ve got some ideas about why this is the case. In my opinion it is inferior to both WordPress.com and Typepad; I’ve used all three at some time or other. For my money WordPress.com is easier to use and the results always look better than Blogspot. We’ll look more at this issue later.

New Zealand’s top WordPress.com blogs:

Here’s the raw list with rankings taken from Halfdone’s list. If you operate a New Zealand-based or New Zealand-focused WordPress.com blog, leave a message in the comments and I’ll add your site to the list. I’m planning to reorganise the ranking system by the time I publish an updated version of this list.

1 Homepaddock

2 Dim Post

3 Poneke’s Weblog

4 The Inquiring Mind

5 Something should go here, maybe later.

6 The visible hand in economics

7 Hitting Metal With A Hammer

8 G.blog

9 Jafapete’s Weblog

10 Newzblog

11 Samuel Dennis

12 In a strange land

13 Aotearoa: a wider perspective

14 Luddite Journo

15 Kiwi Polemicist

16 Consumist

17 100 Word Blog

18 Ideologically Impure

19 Dear John

20 Object Dart

21 Ethical Martini

22 Contradiction

23 Knowledge Workers

24 Anarchia

25 Renascent Exegete

26 John Ansell

27 Socialist Democracy

28 Mike’s view

29 the gossip

30 The Reluctant Botanist

31 Concerned of Linwood

32 anarchafairy

33 Still Truckin’

34 The sprout and the bean

35 the Nicholas O’Kane blog

36 Si Quando Dubium, Illic Est Scilicet

37 Maidennz

38 Frank Observations

11 thoughts on “New Zealand’s top WordPress.com sites

  1. While it’s flattering to be number 1, Poneke definitely and Dim Post probably get more comments than I do which indicates they’re both more popular.

    • Understood. This is a work in progress so I’m feeling my way around these things.

      But however you cut it, Homepaddock is one of the top two or three New Zealand WordPress.com sites.

      I emailed Halfdone to ask about the thinking behind the ranking system, but haven’t had a reply yet. Once I get this project bedded down I’m going to ask people who are willing to send images of their monthly stats tables to get a better ranking system. Ultimately I’d prefer to take Tim Selwyn’s approach, mixing comments and page impressions.

  2. I’m pretty sceptical of the Tumeke rankings below the 50-60 ranks, simply due to how comparatively small spikes in readership from a couple of posts can change rankings dramatically. I think the differences in ‘popularity’ for the lower ranked blogs like my own are somewhat margin of error matters.

    Over November I had more traffic than usual from two posts that Fundypost and The Standard linked to as well as search coming through on one particular post. This boosted my views from 1400ish in Oct to 1700ish in Nov but really propelled me up the charts (from bottom feeder to sewer dweller admittedly).

  3. Goooooooooooooooooooooooo WORDPRESS! Other than that, nothing constructive to add – the whole system of measuring blog popularity is total Greek to me.

  4. Bill

    Personally I find WordPress.com fine to use. I would like the ability to do some things which I cannot do at present as no Java applets, but as a relative newcomer to blogging February 2008, I found establishing my blog easy. Over time I have embellished the layout with widgets.

    Under another name have experimented with different themes.

    If you included WordPress.org then you would include Kiwiblog

    • I plan to look at WordPress.org later. In fact, I’ve spent part of the Christmas break getting my head around the WordPress.org technology for an editoral project I’m working on. It’s a fabulous tool, but it comes at a price: there’s too much temptation to tinker with it.

  5. I wouldn’t touch blogspot with a 10 foot plague pole from having used it for three or four years when I ran one of the top ten NZ sites BDPF (Before kiwiblog).

    You know what, it got annoying so I jacked it in. I’m not in it for the rankings, its my happy place where my friends come. This fixation on hits is so mutch drek.

    • It’s a good point and not one I’d previously thought about. But now you mention it, Blogspot does have the feeling of being designed to appeal to spammers and bottom-feeding multi-level marketing types.

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