Here we are one day from the end of NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month.) Over 10,000 of us around the world committed to blogging every day on the day (no writing five posts on the weekends and storing them) for the month of November. And it looks like, barring getting hit by a truck or breaking all my typing fingers, I’ve made it. I think there are some prizes involved, but I didn’t pay much attention to that. I wanted to see if I could do it, if it would up my readership and if it was sustainable. Check, check and maybe check on all counts.
My problem with blogging is, silly me, I’ve always thought I can’t really post unless I have something to say. Something other than what I had for breakfast or my projected TV viewing schedule was. I could spew out the longest post if I had a subject, but sometimes, I think, I let a potential good post slip by because I wasn’t sure it was different or important enough to post about. Can’t worry about that when you HAVE to post every day. I think the exercise pushed me through that barrier. I found myself on a schedule and in a rhythm that kept posting fun and more consistent.
Amazingly the results were immediate. Readership went up by 105% (according to Google Analytics) and those readers started returning every day. Snooping in on my readers was one of the best parts of this exercise, made possible by my great Secret Squirrel Spyware I wrote about here. TraceMyIP definitely lets me see my imaginary friends!
Which brings me to Ryan Lochte. When I started this blog, I knew I wouldn’t always stay on topic. The point was to document our Green Acres transition from City Kids to Farmers and Vintners. I realized I’d veer off track into politics, musings and various topics, but mostly the posts would be about Sonoma, composting, grape stomping and other exciting rural things. So you’d think most of my readership would be searching for farm and wine related topics. Well, some.
Turns out the largest traffic driver is Google which sends people from all over the world to my site (I’ve got readers from Bulgaria, lots from Finland, Croatia and several from South Africa.) But the biggest all time Google search that sends the most people here?
“Ryan Lochte Naked”
You remember Ryan Lochte? He was the greatest American swimmer this year who wasn’t Michael Phelps. I saw one of his time trials and blogged about it when we attended the Olympics. He wasn’t naked. I’m not sure where that word came in. But go ahead, Google “Ryan Lochte Naked”. About the third choice down: Left Coast Cowboys.
Never let it be said I don’t cater to my readers’ needs. So here, after my own extensive Google search is the most naked picture I could find of Ryan Lochte.
If you can get your minds out of the gutter, you might want to try some of the other searches that get you here. Some are directly related to posts I’ve done. Like my compendium of Christmas Cocktail Songs, World’s Best Unknown Christmas Songs, my countdown of the Top Ten Cowboy Songs of All Time or my suggestion that Obama get a Smooth Fox Terrier for the White House.
People reach these pages through searches such as: “famous cowboys songs yippee”, “what’s the best christmas song you ever heard” or even the genre-bending “cowboy christmas cocktail party”. Sometimes the searches are straight-forward and I can guess what post is being referenced. Sometimes they defy logic. How about these recent searches that brought people here: “nerdy romper”, “Autodidact shop stewards” and “problems finding a good Black church in San Francisco”. Or the searches that break my heart: “Why I don’t want a Smooth Fox Terrier”. That search should CERTAINLY not be getting you here.
So as NaBloPoMo ends, I hope I’ll be keeping this up. And I’ll certainly have my Romper Room Magic Mirror tuned up so I can spy on the strange and circuitous routes my readers take, usually via Google, to get here.