ChiswickW4.com Smashes Record
Three thousand visitors in one day for the first time
Another landmark was passed for ChiswickW4.com with Monday 17th May seeing over 3,200 visitors coming to the site. This smashed the previous record of 2997 and consolidates the position of the site as the Chiswick area's most popular news media.
The surge in visitors was probably down to a strong line-up of items in the weekly newsletter. The most popular story of the week was a report on local property prices which was read over 1,000 times within 48 hours of publication. In addition a strong range of other local items meant that more people than usual clicked through.
Torin Douglas, media correspondent for BBC News said, "ChiswickW4.com has become a vital part of the local media scene. It provides instant access to the latest news, a comprehensive guide to local events and organisations, and a channel through which community groups, local councils and residents can exchange views, in real time, on the topics of the moment."
ChiswickW4.com is completely dependent on advertising revenue for its survival. Nearly all of its customers are locally based businesses so the site has a vested interest in preventing Chiswick becoming a faceless 'Anytown' dominated by the all to familiar national chain stores. It may be too early to announce the turning of the tide but the closure of Dixons and one of the Starbucks outlets suggests that the larger corporate chains are not having it all their own way.
The more independent local businesses that operate in the area the better the quality of life is likely to be for local people. Generally speaking it is not the major chains who play the biggest role in community life. The restoration of Christmas lights last year was organised and funded entirely by smaller independents with no contribution whatsoever from the big High Street names.
The weekly Chiswick e-mail newsletter currently has over 4800 subscribers. This is the largest circulation of any similar publication in Europe and the subscription list is the most complete record of e-mail addresses by area in the UK according to a local media analyst. There will be a series of special promotions over the next few weeks to ensure that the 5000 level is reached in June.
Meanwhile lots of work is going on behind the scenes to increase participation in the site. First up will be an enhanced services listing which will further improve information on the best available local services and increase the flow of business for clients of ChiswickW4.com. Already design work is being done to ensure that ChiswickW4.com will be available on digital TV which will mean that when the analogue signal is switched off in the next few years nearly every home in Chiswick will have access to the site.
May 21, 2004