Figuring Out When It’s Time To Let Go

That’s an ominous title, so let me first say that I’m not ending this blog, not leaving my relationship, and nothing else bad has happened to me. Not that any new readers will care, but some of the consistent readers might be wondering what I’m talking about; all is good with me. 🙂

services stuff

What’s not good is one of my websites, one that I’ve had since 2006. It’s called Services and Stuff, and I’m not going to link to it. The reason I’m not going to link to it is because when it expires in March I’m not going to renew it, and I’d rather not have to try to remember to remove the link from this particular article, especially since I have to try to remember to go back and remove it from any other articles I’ve added those links to over the years.

When I created that site, it was my intention to create kind of a portal site where businesses could add their links to and I could make money off it via affiliate marketing. The two images above represented “services” and “stuff”, since I hadn’t fully defined what “stuff” was going to be back then. It turns out that over the years I never fully defined what stuff was, so it turned into anything that wasn’t services.

The difference between my portal and all those directories you see everywhere else is that I was personally reviewing each site, which means people couldn’t just add their wacky sites to it. If a site didn’t fit my own quality standards, then it didn’t get listed. I also indicated that to anyone who visited the site, hoping that they’d see what a difference it was from other sites purporting to do the same thing.

I changed the initial look pretty quickly, within a couple of months actually, and what you see is what it looked like after the change. It was a lot cleaner than my original main page, which was more of a splash page without any real content on it. I thought I was on my way to making at least a few hundred dollars a day. Who doesn’t dream big?

early look after 2 months

Within a year I had added a lot more affiliate links and way more categories of both services and stuff. Yet I wasn’t making all that much money, and almost all of it was through Google Adsense, which isn’t always the best option because when people click on those ads they leave your site. Still, I was averaging maybe $2 a month; that’ll buy you a candy bar but not much else.

Over the next few years I’d keep adding pages and subtracting pages and adding links and removing links. When I wrote about leaving Commission Junction back in October, I was griping about not making a lot of money through its affiliate program. What I didn’t mention is that it and other programs of the past (like the Google Affiliate Network) kept adding and removing affiliates, sometimes totally shutting down, and most of the time they wouldn’t tell you they’d done it. Not only was that hard to keep up with but sometimes a link I’d added for one of those affiliate programs would expire, and they didn’t tell you that either. It was a lot of work for little money; sigh…

I knew problems were there long ago. Heck, my 2011 goals even mentioned that I was thinking about changing it to some kind of online store because my original idea wasn’t working that well. It took me 4 years to give that a shot, when I created a page of all the books I’d been recommending over the years on all my blogs and other books I liked. That all came crashing down with the B&N fiasco that I hadn’t realized occurred months earlier; now the only page I still have on there is my Fitbit page, which I’m not linking to yet because I’m going to move it elsewhere, possibly linking it directly to IJS… which means I have to change how it looks, which probably isn’t a bad idea. Luckily I went the route of not using CJ for any of those products; whew!

The last time I renewed the site was in 2014, and I did so because I was out of town consulting and I didn’t have any time to think about it. After all, it was kind of my baby, my dream, and I was holding onto it for all it was worth.

S&S now

Well… it’s time to let it go. What you see above is what the page looks like right now… and it’s all wrong. The movies are old; about 80% of those affiliate programs are gone because they were part of CJ. All those other pages are still around, but there are banner ads on all of those pages and, frankly, I don’t have the time or inclination to go and remove them from each of those pages. Instead, over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to start removing all the content from that site. When I’m done, I’ll only have an index page, and I’ll probably link it to this article explaining why I’m shutting it down. I’ve given it a good 10 years; who wouldn’t agree with me that it’s time to let it go?

I should have done this years ago, but now that I’ve come to this decision, I feel a bit of pressure off my shoulders. It’s like when I decided in November to give up news and to focus more on happiness. Sometimes we all need to learn when something’s not doing us any favors, or some people are hindering our progress, and we just need to let it go.

At least it didn’t take me 18 years like it took Elsa! 🙂


20 thoughts on “Figuring Out When It’s Time To Let Go”

  1. I am relieved and glad after reading your first paragraph that you are not ending this blog and that all is well with you.

    A very happy blogging 2017 to you Mitch.

  2. Hello Mitch
    First thing before I forget is I want to wish you a Happy and prosperous new year. And about your blog sometimes Mitch that’s the best thing to do. It will free up alot of time and energy on your main baby. Like you said one less thing to worry about. Well I’m going to holler at you Mitch I just bought those SSL certificates and I want to make sure I DO THE RIGHT THING BECAUSE i Know people who have lost their traffic when they didn’t update the sitemap.

  3. Good for you, at least you realise that cause you a little value at all. Sometimes, we need to give up for something so that new things can enter.

  4. Hello Mitch,

    You post reminded me of a lot of thing that I have been through & I totally agree with you. it is the best to let go as it/they will just hold you back from success or your aim. After all if is all upon you whether you are strong enough to let go and deserve something better in future.

    1. Thanks Itender. Yeah, I was beating that horse and it wasn’t feeling a thing and I’m glad I made that decision. It seems to be following a theme of mine as we get further into 2017.

  5. Mitch,

    This post was exactly what I needed to hear. I’ve got an old blog, that I haven’t updated in ages, that I need to let go. It is just so hard to do. Reading your post reminded me that it is okay to let go and there is absolutely no reason to feel bad about the decision.


    PS. Glad to hear you aren’t quitting this blog!

    1. Glad I helped you think about it a bit Amy. I always hate letting a property go but I’m starting to realize that I can only do so much, especially if it’s not bringing me either joy or untold riches. As for this blog… I hope I never give it up either; way too much stuff to say. 🙂

  6. Hi Mitch,

    You gave me quite a shock with your headline….thank goodness you are not letting this one go. Phew….

    I know the feeling quite well of letting other sites we own go. I was just thinking of one of my niche sites that I don’t want to deal with anymore. Not only can I keep up with it, but I’m not satisfied with the vendor.

    You have given me a little push here and I thank you.

    Wishing you the best new year ever to you and the woman you married,


    1. Thanks Donna; seems this post is giving some folks things to think about as it regards some of their own properties. This is the 3rd one I’ve let go of in the last 2 1/2 years… and it’s the best feeling for giving one up to this point.

      Onward and upward for 2017; lots of things planned!

  7. Yep
    It is sometimes better to let go of things that are not working out.A salute to you that you hold on to your dream of creating a quality directory for such a long time.

  8. Good on you Mitch! I read this post with interest because there are probably some sites that I should let go. The problem which ones?

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