Tag Archives: visits

Post #601 – Time For More Changes

Wow, 600 posts, and I’m still going relatively strong. I didn’t quite hit the date I had expected to hit when I wrote post #501, but I’m close to that date, and I feel good about where I am, so it’s all good.

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Look tired don’t I?

When I wrote post #500, I said I was going to start being a bit more personal on this blog, and it seems that I have been. It’s translated to more visitors, which makes me feel like it was the right way to go. Here were my top 5 topics for the last 100 articles:

Blogging – 30

Personal – 10

Product – 8

Entertainment – 7

Research – 6

It’s the first time entertainment has shown up on my top lists, but I enjoy those posts, though they take the longest to do, what with my looking for videos and products to shill. It does seem to be true, however, that list posts get a lot of attention, even if not always a lot of commentary. This leads to the topic of my most popular posts during the time period, and once again, most of the most popular were posts written beforehand. As a matter of fact, one that’s popped out of nowhere was written in April 2008! Here they are, and, for a change, when they were written:

Getting Google Desktop To Index Thunderbird 406 visits, 12/2008

Top 100 Singers Of All Time 272 visits, 01/2009

WordPress 2.9 Upgrade; My Issues 120 visits, new!

Watch Out For Secret Shopper Scams 119 visits, 4/2008

Isn’t that incredible? I wonder what’s going on that so many people still need help with that older stuff. Next, my most commented on articles during the last 100 posts:

My Top 10 Favorite TV Shows – 41

Trying To Understand Squeeze Pages – 40

Beyond Blogging – 36

It Pays To Be Bad Sometimes – 32

Limit Login Attempts – 31

Those are the stats I wanted to share with you. I could look at plenty more, but I want to go in a different direction, to let you know what’s coming.

I don’t make money off this blog; that doesn’t mean I can’t. However, what’s a bit more important is streamlining a few things and promoting some other things better. So, here’s what’s coming, if I haven’t already made the changes when you read this.

A lot of the banner ads are going away. I’m probably keeping the one at the top and maybe one on the side, but that’s it. My hope is that some of my remaining real estate will look like a prime place for advertisers at some point, but initially it’s going to clean up the page a little bit. The books are going to remain, but I might repackage how they look on the site, if it fits.

I’m going to add an area where all the products or things I positively review will be listed, with a link to that review. I think those things deserve to be sitting out here more prominently, especially a product like Mailwasher. Usually when we write about these things they only remain prominent for a short period of time, then get lost in the abyss of newer posts. That seems like a smart business move.

I’m also probably going to add back Google Adsense to this blog, which I removed a long time ago. I’ll probably go with a smaller ad than that long one I’ve had before, just to have something here. If people are looking for topics I hadn’t thought about before on this blog, maybe they’ll be the ones who’ll find what they’re looking for on Adsense, right?

And some of the “trinkets” things to the right I’m probably going to remove as well. Not all of them, but some, like the one presently saying my blog is ranked #254 on Winning the Web, will be gone, mainly because if you click on it and go to their site, it pops up this book thing that sometimes won’t go away even when you hit close, and if it’s irritating me then it will probably be irritating others as well.

I appreciate every one of you for checking in with me from time to time, and I hope to find even more things that add value to your online or offline experiences. Most of all, I want to be at least someone entertaining; nothing worse than a lot of boring stuff. Now, it’s still my blog, which means I’ll put on here whatever I want to put on here, but it doesn’t mean I might not entertain thoughts here and there; just be ready for me to debate you on them. 🙂

Onward and upward, as we head towards #700.
 

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The Fine Line Between Blog Visitors Success And Failure

For the past two years, I’ve wondered one big question over all others; what is it that makes one person get thousands of subscribers versus someone getting a hundred.


by Laurence Simon

It’s an interesting question to look at because, though we know that traffic that’s meaningless isn’t supposed to mean all that much, the truth is that traffic really is the key to everything.

If you want to make money you want traffic. If you want readers to see you as an authority on something so that you’re asked to go and speak to others in person and make money off it, you want traffic. If you’re looking for some kind of validation that you’re words are communicating with anyone, you want traffic.

Something I do that I’m sure others do from time to time is check out what some of the top bloggers are saying or doing that seems to be working for them, then compare what they’re doing with what you’re doing. Hey, you know it’s true.

In my mind, I don’t see lots out there better than what I do. I do see some things much different. I see some people write some fairly technical stuff, but not as many of them. I see some folks who write a lot of nothing and rank better than I do, and I’m not sure how that happens. I see some of the big time bloggers who may write only half the time, allowing others to guest post on their blogs. Heck, I allow that myself, but I don’t have a lot of people who take me up on it.

So, what really makes the difference? I think it has more to do with having some bonafides when it comes to whatever it is you do. For instance, John Chow is a guy who’s made a lot of money online. Truthfully, he’s made a lot of money offline as well. People know that, and it gives him a built in audience before he says word one.

Darren Rowse is the same. When you look at her early stuff you see that he had few commenters. But somewhere along the way he broke through, got advertising, was able to show that blogging could make someone a millionaire, and that was that.

Y’all see this book I’m helping to promote, Beyond Blogging, there to the side. Well, every person in that book is a 6-figure a year blogger. Some of those six figures are more than $500,000 a year. Even if those guys didn’t try to make money by blogging, they’d be making some money from blogging.

I’m not mad at anyone who makes a lot of money blogging. Heck, I’m not mad at anyone who makes a lot of money at anything. What I am, though, is wanting the knowledge to figure out how these folks do what they do. It’s not that they all help each other out. It might have been at one time, but no one would have helped anyone if they hadn’t shown something beforehand.

Also, there’s something about participating in the entire blogging community. The way I believe I’ve helped my subscriber number grow is by commenting on other blogs. There are a lot of new people visiting that I might never have met if I hadn’t visited their blogs. Okay, a big ups has also come from both Sire and Kristi in the last month, so I have to give them some big things as well. But I really believe subscribing to lots of blogs so I have something to comment on has helped greatly.

Commenting on other blogs might provide that big difference between success and failure. Things like running a contest might get you a blip, but most of those people won’t stay beyond the first entry. Truthfully, other than finding not only a niche that will bring a lot of visitors but also finding a way to stand out, I can’t think of anything other than commenting on other blogs that will help generate visitors to come to your blog. Well, maybe writing 10 posts a day; I don’t see that happening any time soon.

What do you think about all of this? Share your thoughts on the topic, and let’s see if we can come up with solutions.
 

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Deciding When To Go To A Paid Model

I’m not going to lie. I love finding free stuff on the internet. If it’s applications I can use that will handle little stuff for me, it’s all good. If it’s information that I’m looking for, even better. It’s not that I’ll never pay for anything, but I find most of the time that the free stuff addresses my specific need and nothing else. Most of the time that suits me just fine.

I also recognize when I have to be realistic and pay for something. Depending on what it is and how much it is, I will look around for a bargain. But sometimes there’s only one place, or one way, to get certain information. if I need it bad enough, I’ll pony up the cash and get it done.

Sometimes it’s us who are giving away a lot of free stuff. Nothing wrong with that, but every once in awhile we have to look at what it is we’re giving away, how much of it we’re giving away, and whether it’s time to start charging for at least a portion of it. That’s not easy to do, especially when you’ve started out establishing that you’re doing a lot of things for free.

Such is the case with my Medical Billing Answers site. Many of you know that I’m also a healthcare finance consultant, centering on revenue cycle issues. That’s charge capture and billing for most of you. Anyway, I set up that site to try to give information to people in terms that were fairly easy to understand. I add articles to that site from time to time also.

I actually created the site for people who wanted to learn some things about insurances and the like and to get some information on how medical billing works as far as getting their bills paid. I also said that I would answer medical billing questions, one per customer, for free.

What ended up happening is the people who were asking me questions were people in medical billing. And some of the questions they were asking was some pretty technical stuff. I had answers for everyone, but sometimes I had to do a bit of research. That didn’t trouble me all that much; however, when more of them wanted me to provide links to prove that my information was correct, I figured that was the last straw, so to speak.

About 8 days ago, I decided it was time to go for a paid model as far as answering questions. I set it up on my consulting services page that I would now answer medical billing questions for a fee, $4.50 per question. I would also entertain as many questions as people had, as long as they paid for it, which obviously was a change in the business model. And, while I was at it, I set up a monthly consulting fee that I don’t think is overly high and is a pretty good deal for smaller hospitals or physicians offices that don’t the money to bring in a high priced consultant to help them out.

Then, while I was at it, I figured it was a fairly good business model to add to my business website also. After all, if I can provide consulting services and stay home, all through email, and can get enough people to pay my monthly fee, why not take a shot, right?

So, how have things progressed thus far? First off, no one has paid for anything, but it’s still early, and we had the holiday. As a matter of fact, I figure that all the bad stuff I’m going to mention can be blamed on the holiday week, so I’ll probably have to check the stats after another week to see how things really are. Anyway, second, I haven’t made a penny since last Monday, and this is my biggest Adsense money making site. However, my consulting services page is also the 5th visited page over the course of the week, which means people are at least looking at it. And they’re reading it, as they’ve spent an average of a minute and 55 seconds on it.

How about on my business site? My new consulting services page was the 8th most visited page for the first week, and people stayed there an average of 7 minutes and 37 seconds. Now that’s a bit of overkill if you ask me, but in my mind it’s telling me that people were at least thinking about it, even if they didn’t pull the trigger. Maybe it was because of the holidays; I can only hope. Since I only have Adsense on a couple of pages on my business site, I didn’t expect it to bring in any money.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with trying to make money from your specialty. I can honestly say there are a few blogs I visit where I know they have some stuff that they should probably be charging for. Not everything, of course; I’d never charge anyone for reading my blog, like Garry Conn did at one point for certain posts (I’m not sure if he’s still doing it, but it looks like he’s started accepting comments again, and he has good stuff so give it a look). But I have been asked why I’m charging for my webinar when many people use theirs as freebies to help promote themselves. And I answer because I didn’t give a fluff presentation of nothing to entice people to pay big money for something later on, I gave real information that people could immediately use and thus I charged for it.

It can be a struggle in deciding what, and when, to start charging for certain things. If any of you have tried it, or have thoughts going to a paid business model of some sort, please share them, because I think it’s something valuable that many people should think about every once in awhile.
 

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