A Look At EN World's Stats & Demographics

EN World is an old community by internet standards - 16 years old! When it started, there was no Facebook or Twitter, WotC was being run by Peter Adkison and Ryan Dancey, Pathfinder wasn't even a glimmer in Jason Bulmahn's eye, and D&D was launching its 3rd edition. The forums had only about 4,000 members! Decades pass, and things change, and I thought it would be fun to take a peek at the demographics of this community's members. With over half a million individual users in the last 30 days, making millions of pageviews, a look at Google Analytics can reveal a lot of data on who is browsing EN World. No surprise, male Americans make the largest group, but there are increases in other countries. Note that all this data is aggregate, anonymous and from Google's analytics service. Consider this a sort of New Year "State of EN World" thing.


Overall traffic -- 3.9 million unique visitors over the year with 0.5 million in the last 30 days; over 11 million separate user sessions and tens of millions of pageviews. 77.3% are returning visitors and 32.7% are new.

Screen Shot 2017-01-06 at 15.09.41.png


The overall audience shows age and gender. That has changed a lot in recent years -- the age is skewing lower than it used to. In particular, the 18-24 group has grown considerably. Sadly, the gender disparity, although slightly better, is still not even close to equal, with 92.4% of the traffic being male. I don't know what the overall disparity of actual players is, so I couldn't tell you whether that is representative or not. Note that this is (see the popular pages below) largely people just reading the news, not necessarily participating in the community.


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The following data is interesting. The US used to be around 80% of traffic, but it seems more locations are swinging by these days. Desktop browser usage has been dropping for years, and it's now starting to approach 50%. Another few years, and it'll be the minority. Social network referrals show that Facebook is by far the largest source of social network traffic, followed by Reddit. Social networks, however, only provide 4.5% of traffic overall with most of it coming directly from organic Google searches.


LOCATIONDEVICESREFERRALS*SOCIAL NETWORKS
USA 60.73%
Canada 7.95%
UK 6.84%
Australia 3.88%
Brazil 1.95%
Germany 1.95%
Italy 1.62
Netherlands 1.28%
France 1.15%
Sweden 0.94%
Desktop 57.56%
Mobile 35.99%
Tablet 6.45%
Organic Search 74.8%
Direct 16.1%
Social Networks* 4.5%
Website Links 4.7%
Other 0.46%
Email 0% (62 people!)
Facebook 41.92%
Reddit 24.83%
Blogger 18.39%
Twitter 6.9%
Google+ 2.8%
Stack Exchange 2.19%
Pinterest 1.43%
VKontakte 0.45%
Wikia 0.4%
StumbleUpon 0.2%


The table below shows the most popular areas of EN World. The news page takes in over 50% of the traffic by itself, but that's no shock.

1. Front/news page
2. D&D 5th Edition forum
3. Character Sheets
4. Character Builds & Optimization forum
5. Media Lounge forum
7. Play-by-post forums
8. General RPG forum





The list below shows the most common search queries which landed people on EN World. Very D&D 5E oriented, as one might expect. I like "elf puns".

[UPDATE - I did this wrong before; this is the correct list]


1.unknown
2.enworld
3.en world
4.(not set)
5.enworld.org
6.enworld 5e
7.enworld forum
8.dungeons and dragons forum
9.homebrewing-a-world-help-me-out
10.delta green
11.mystara 5e
12.http://www.enworld.org/
13.breaking up with pathfinder rpg
14.enword
15.why does 5e suck mishihari site
16.rape-culture-and-the-matriarchy-a-twist-on-elves-let-s-do-it-right
17.d&d reddit monster
18.www.enworld.org
19.cache:http://www.enworld.org/forum/forum.php
20.dnd 5th edition character builder
21.enlarge person spell also gain size increase
22.gish d&d
23.d&d 5e dex fighter
24.rpg downloads
25.princes of the apocalypse review
26.kobald press tome of beasts list
27.shadow of the demonlord en world
28.enworld 5e forum
29.5e favored soul
30.5e character sheet
31.doomvault site
32.5e dungeons and dragons long rest interrupted
33.d&d 5e wizard guide
34.5e fighter guide charop
35.5e wizard guide
36.traveller d20 srd
37.d&d intellect devourer
38.dark obelisk kickstarter
39.enworld forums
40.hoard of the dragon queen errata
41.enworld ua ranger
42.wand of viscid globs overpowered
43.d&d 5e sorcerer
44.dnd forum
45.heist site:enworld.org
46.chris perkins the dm experience
47.d&d 5e sorcerer guide
48.what-are-the-options-for-living-without-ddi
49.dungeons and dragons 5th edition monster cards
50.utility power 4e
51.d&d 5e fighter guide
52.aughisky d&d
53.d&d 5e character builder
54.hoard of the dragon queen
55.5e grapple
56.volo's guide to monsters new races
57.d&d 5e rogue guide
58.d-d-s-lead-increases-stars-without-number-surges-in-latest-orr-group-report
59.map greyhawk
60.d&d 5e character sheet
61.5e warlock guide
62.pathfinder steal combat maneuver
63.5e great weapon master d12 axe
64.savage worlds tokens
65.sword coast bladesinger
66."social skills"
67.phandalin population
68.bladesinger 5e
69.campaign log site
70.d&d 5e goblin stats
71.spelljammer 5e
72.titansgrave season 2
73.5e highest passive perception
74.recommended-magic-item-creation-alternative-rules
75.en world forum
76.bullgrit blog
77.chronicles of the gatekeeper review
78.dragon+ on computer
79.converting conan to 5e
80.tyranny of dragons errata
81.d&d 5e what counts as not wearing armor
82."night's dark terror" podcast
83.5e sorcerer guide
84.the-treasure-map-rg
85.conan rpg monster tokens
86.d and d 5e witch
87.d&d 5e rogue
88.empire of nerath
89.5e sorcerer
90.d&d character sheets
91.dungeon mapping software
92.iarno albrek
93.arcane trickster 5th edition
94.d&d 5e warlock
95.d&d 5e
96.shannara 5th edition d&d
97.5e unarmored defense
98.d&d 5e pixie
99.enworld.com
100.ocupied space blade barrier

CONCLUSION - it's clear that the largest audience grouping here is male American D&D players. The audience size itself has increased over the year month on month, exceeding half a million unique users each month. That's a lot of people! The most popular page is the front/news page (not surprising) followed by the D&D 5th Edition forum. Areas where I'd like to improve include more coverage of non-D&D games (lots of that coming this year with our paid freelance articles program to be run by Chris Helton) and a broader, more representative sample of visitors.

The largest behavioural grouping by far from regular visitors is folks who come along and read the news. That has always been the busiest part of the sites and continues to be.



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Russ Morrissey

Comments

Redthistle

Explorer
"Lies, damn lies, and statistics." Sad truth, but I find all three to be sources of entertainment. :-S

Although this article only included the third category, I certainly enjoyed it!
 

lyle.spade

Explorer
Interesting: I thought that I would be in a larger, or perhaps the majority, group by age. I am not. I am not in the top two. I don't know if I rate as a grognard, but the older I get....the older I get. Funny.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I find it interesting that I'm not in the main demographic for the site. Of the three main things it measures (25-34 yr old male Americans) I'm only one of those things.
 

Istbor

Explorer
I AM a 25-34 male American though. Good to see I am not special.

Interesting stuff Morrus.

I can only conclude that we need more members of the female persuasion in here to balance things out a bit better. Kudos to the ladies that do stick around and put up with us men, your thoughts and input are much appreciated. .
 

TerraDave

5ever
Skewing much younger.

Consistent with changing demographics for D&D itself. Closing the WotC forums also probably helped.

Posters still tend to seem pretty grognardy. Could post a poll in the 5E forums...my guess is that the responses would be older. Hmm.
 

Vymair

Villager
I've always though that the hey-day was going to be my generation (those born in 60s & 70s) and that it would die with us as well. I thought that computer games had killed table top games. I'm glad I was wrong and that the hobby is attracting younger gamers. I'm really happy from the social interaction perspective. Getting around a table spending time with friends is a really good thing.
 
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MacConnell

Creator of The Untamed Wilds
Also being one of those 60s born gamers, I am pleasantly surprised at the increase in interest with the younger generations as well. The availability of this site to provide access to a play-by-post concept is definitely a contributing factor to the longevity of table-top gaming. When it was first suggested to me by another, i was skeptical. I now find that PbP is even better. It provides a common table over a world of distance.
 

Blue

Orcus on a bad hair day
Thanks Morris, this is pretty cool!

Demographics are an interesting skew - because what's being reported is really the overlap in the Venn diagram of "Reads Internet Forums", "Likes RPGs" and whatever X demographic is.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Thanks Morris, this is pretty cool!

Demographics are an interesting skew - because what's being reported is really the overlap in the Venn diagram of "Reads Internet Forums", "Likes RPGs" and whatever X demographic is.
Not forums, but the site as a whole. Traffic on the front page is much higher than that of the forums. So it's more "uses websites" than "reads forums".

More accurately, what's exactly being reported is "visits EN World in some capacity".
 
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Ghost2020

Explorer
Oh man..I thought I wouldn't cross over into the small group, but apparently i did. I'm in the 45-54. Oof...that stings.

I am very very happy to know that the large chunk of people are the ones who spend money on gaming books and will keep the hobby moving! Very encouraging!
 
I am glad to see the younger category shooting up. I'm in the not-as-younger category as noted above but I'm doing what I can to train the next generation. Apparently some of the rest of the crew is too.
 

Louis Brenton

Explorer
I'm 44 & I started playing in the early 80s. I'm very pleased to see the growing younger demographic, as I would have assumed that my age group would certainly be the largest. Instead, there are two groups larger. That bodes well for the future of the rpg hobby & the next generation of rpg-ers.
 

Wulffolk

Villager
I has been my anecdotal experience that table-top RPG's and LARPing were fighting a losing battle against MMORPG's and card games, especially Magic the Gathering. Every one of the few remaining hobby stores within a reasonable drive from me is completely dominated by kids playing Magic, and only carries a minimal amount of Actual RPG material.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I'm surprised News is the big draw. I go straight to the forums myself.
Must people don't delve into the forums of news websites. I visit a dozen news websites every day (different topics - world news, tech news, movie news, etc). On all of them I visit the front page, skim it for news articles which interest me. I don't even know if those sites have forums!

The forum folks are the hard core. They're a (vocal!) minority dwarfed by the majority who drive by the front page each day.
 

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