If you are a blogger, you’ll find this post curiously entertaining; if you are a reader, you’ll get a behind the scene sneak peak at what keeps a blogger awake at night!
Going through my site statistics I noticed that the traffic for this blog has been gradually increasing and last month alone, the traffic was almost as much as the entire traffic of moneycone.com in 2010!
That’s a year’s worth of traffic in one month!
I would usually attribute a sudden spike as an anomaly, but considering the traffic has been gaining slowly, I’m quite pumped!
Traffic snapshot this year (taken beginning of Nov)
Traffic snapshot last year
170,000 pages served to 21,000 Unique Visitors just for the month of October
Same time last year: 20,000 pages served to 3000 unique visitors
Building a site with a blacklisted domain
When I purchased this domain last year, little did I know that this site was previously used by some chinese spammer to peddle incense sticks! Or may be that’s an euphemism in China, I don’t know.
That was my impression from the spam I was receiving. Some were in Chinese, some in English and nary a vist from Google. And so in exasperation, decided to write to Google! Like they were going to consider my request from the millions of such requests they get everyday!
But surprise, surprise! I did receive a response back from Big G that they are reconsidering my request and that I should expect a visit! And sure enough, the traffic started picking up – slowly but surely.
Now that the first hurdle was overcome, the next was more difficult. Sustaining the traffic. I must be doing something right to have a consistently growing traffic! I thought I’ll compare my secrets with what’s considered conventional wisdom!
Post regularly, post often
It is generally believed that if your site doesn’t have frequent changes, search engines might stop visiting you. And to keep the site fresh, keep posting often and maintain a schedule.
I would, if I could! I post if I have something to post about and keep fluff posts to a minimum (ok, this one is a fluff post!). The original purpose was to journal my financial successes and failures which I thought readers might find informative *and* to keep a personal record.
I go from one financial project to another and don’t really have a schedule or post frequently for that matter. But that hasn’t stopped search engines from visiting.
The purpose of guest posts is to reach a wider audience and to gain backlinks. Not considering blog swaps or Seeking Alpha syndication, I have a grand total of one guest post!
Not that I didn’t try! One was too busy to respond, the other politely refused! Published them here and both brought a ton of traffic and ironically one of the posts was chosen as the Editor’s Pick in a carnival started by one of the bloggers above!
Guest posting takes a lot of time and effort. Not saying I won’t attempt it again, but not really into it.
80% of traffic from Google! That’s considered pretty healthy. I know there are a number of tools to get ranked higher in search results and this strategy is called keyword research. I’m aware, but don’t use any of them.
I do follow some basic rules, but don’t let SEO dictate what I should post about.
I write about what I do, mostly. Can’t tell you what’s the best balance transfer strategy, since I haven’t done it myself! Plus, too much effort for a lazy blogger!
Honestly, I suck at that! Had a facebook page which only I was aware of! Ended up deleting it! I do like Twitter. Requires minimal maintenance, but best of all, it is a great way to discover new blogs. But with Google beginning to index Facebook threads, this may be required at some point.
There are a number of strategies to please the search engine gods and I’m sure if I focus on them I might do even better with the traffic. But I think, none of them triumphs good content.
This one post was tweeted 99 times, liked 300 times and is also the most commented, most linked post in this blog. Incidentally, this post was also the most time consuming. Took me weeks to research the data. Calculator, spreadsheets, historical quotes, calculating returns, checking and rechecking for errors… It was exhausting. But the hard work paid off!
I could spend time SEOing a post or spend time on a post itself. I choose the latter.