Dear Medium, your stats page kinda stinks

Give me better stats so I can write better articles?

Updated 2021

Dear Medium,

I really like your platform, love all the thoughtful experiences you are building.

However, these is one part of your platform that just seems to have been skipped over. When you were handing out the awesome UX UI juice, did you forget about your stats page?

You have made some choices, (or omissions) that make it really hard for me, as a writer to learn and improve from my results.

I need to easily see which stories are getting viewed this week

I have 5,000 view in the last 30 days. This is good. I have no idea which stories are getting those views. This is bad. I can click onto individual stories and the top graph will show the views for that story during the 30 day period.

But that means, to see which stories are getting viewed, I would have to click on each and every story. Guessing and checking to see what the views were. This is a horrible experience.

Medium gives this info in their weekly email. But not on their stat page.

I need to see more than 30 days at a time

How did my post do over the course of a year? Can’t tell. How did this set of stories do over the last couple months? Can’t tell. I think this story is evergreen and will get lots of views over a long time period. But I wouldn’t be able to track that in Medium. Should I write more stories like this? Can’t tell.

I need to see follow statistics from each story

Sometimes in your emails you call out how a certain person followed me. For example this email.

Very helpful. So why is this info only available in these occasional emails, and not in the Stats page? Please show me which stories are gaining the most followers.

I need to see traffic sources across articles

I spend a lot of time on my articles, and I spend a lot of time promoting them. I want to know how my promotion efforts are working. I want to know where are my readers coming from. I can see sources on individual articles, but not in aggregate. What % of my traffic is coming from Reddit? Don’t know. What percentage from Twitter? Can’t tell.

I need to see publication dates

My stories are grouped by month in the default view, which is nice. But the second you do any sorting, all dates are gone. I would love the date of each story to be easily seen.

I need to see where spikes of activity are coming from

This just happened in my stats.

I would love to figure out where that interest came from, what is happening, if I need to take action. But I can’t do any of this.

Design Recommendations

As I was writing this article, I found this article from uxplanet.org where they enumerate a lot of these same issues, and then redesign the Medium Stats page. I like it a lot ❤️ and it influenced this article even. Their ideas are spot on.

So Medium, love what you have done with the place, but please sprinkle some of that user experience magic on the Stats page.

Update — I wrote this article in March of 2018.

In the 3 years that have passed… nothing has changed on the Medium stats page.

I recently had an experience where an article I wrote hit the front page of HackerNews.

Lead to 4k views. I had NO idea that was happening. Medium didn’t tell me. I found out because someone sent me a message on LinkedIn.

Worse, I found the stats recap from that week and this is what is was.

No mention of the article that suddenly got 4k views.

I am going to moving all my writing back to my own blog in the near future.

Code, design, cook. Make stuff. Cookies. @BYU grad.

Code, design, cook. Make stuff. Cookies. @BYU grad.