The plugin documentation explains how it works like this:
How does the plugin count views / calculate the popularity of posts?
Out of the box WordPress doesn’t have the ability of keeping track of post/page views count, only comments count. WordPress Popular Posts adds the ability to track post/page views to your WordPress site for you.
When sorting popular posts by views, WordPress Popular Posts will use the post/page views data it started caching since the moment you installed it to rank the top posts according to the settings you have configured in the plugin. WordPress Popular Posts can also rank the popularity of your posts based on comments count as well.
Our understanding is that the plugin does not have the required data (yet) to display the most popular posts. In the meantime, you can choose to display the most recent posts widget and use this other widget in the near future.
As this issue is related with the WP Popular Posts, it’s best if you try to reach the plugin authors. They will be more informed and better suited to help you.
We remain available for all support requests related with the use of your theme.
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Troubleshooting Demo Imports
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