Party Platforms - Analyzing When Voters Research their Vote

By Greg Farries on Oct 28, 2008

We use Google Analytics to monitor and analyze the traffic we receive on Maple Leaf Web. The level of detail provided by Google Analytics is simply astonishing and it provides a unique look into how people are using Maple Leaf Web to research important political topics.

Our 2008 Election coverage was a very popular section of the site during the 2008 federal election campaign. According to Google Analytics, over the course of the writ period Maple Leaf Web attracted over 166,149 visits and 656,913 pageviews. These traffic numbers provide some interesting insight into how voters were using the site during the 2008 election campaign.

The image you see above is the traffic to Maple Leaf Web (between the dates of Sept 7th and Oct 15) received from visitors searching for keywords containing the word "platform". As you can see, the traffic is fairly static from Sept 7th through Oct 4th (with less than 400 people a day finding the site with a keyword containing "platform"). However, from Oct 5th to Oct 12 we see a slight traffic increase at the beginning and then it falls off slightly at the end. Only on the day before the election and on Election Day do we see a huge spike in traffic - 2919 visitors and 6174 visitors respectively.

Interestingly - if you consider the traffic received by Maple Leaf Web to be representative of a broader trend - it appears a significant portion of Canadians wait until the last minute to research the party platforms of the major political parties.

Note: this graph only represents a small sliver of the website traffic we received during the writ period. Over the next few weeks I plan going over some other interesting website traffic trends. So please stay tuned!

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