I’m closing in on the 10 year blogiversary here at Muskblog. Muschamp.ca has actually been online for over a decade. I swear I spend more time editing old blog postings rather than adding new content. I’m the rare web denizen who cares about accuracy and Quality rather than just trying to game the system to increase my Klout. The Instagram Rapture of 2014 reveals just how vain celebrities and wannabes truly are.
Update: I made it to ten years as an honest to goodness WordPress blogger. Can’t say it has been an easy or happy journey.
I think the rise of Twitter and other social networks has led to a decrease in actual blogging. It is much easier to share a link and 120 characters of text rather than to write an entire post. It is easy to take a quick snap on your mobile phone and hash tag the hell out of it rather than put up a whole gallery of photos which you’ve carefully curated, cropped, and described in Flickr. Assuming Flickr is still usable form China and iPhoto is truly working better I will make greater use of it in 2015. Hosting all your own images especially on the social media dominated web makes less and less sense. I still think having a featured image, which must be uploaded into WordPress’s database is a good design choice. One or more images can provide a large benefit to search engine optimization, but if your goal is truly popularity you should also upload and share images on Twitter or Instagram, this also saves you dollars on web hosting.
I probably should care more about popularity, but after what happened during my MBA, I just had to get away from anyone even remotely deceitful or someone who tolerates poor spiteful behaviour in colleagues. If you care about popularity you should blog about a topic that is popular. Niche blogs can do very well but if you have dreams of a media empire you pretty much had to start at least five years ago, ten would have been better and you should have blogged about celebrities or tech. Rumours and gossip being the alpha and omega of the popularity obsessed. Whether you care about Quality or popularity, learning to use tags effectively will help with SEO and make your blog more organized.
The name that has become synonymous with WordPress SEO is Yoast which is actually spelled Joost, he and his team advocate against the overuse of tags. I was perhaps guilty of this at one point, but of course my blog is so old it predates WordPress tags. Part of the blog maintenance I’ve been doing is trying to get the number of tags used on each post to five or less. I’ve also tried to use more useful even more popular tags, and perhaps most shocking of all I’ve deleted over 100 posts. No one read them, no one was probably ever going to read them and they just were not very focussed or high Quality. Hopefully by removing them people will find the better content more easily.
The other quality control blog maintenance tasks I’ve been engaged in for the last year or so was adding featured images, improving descriptions and titles, and choosing custom excerpts. All this behind the scenes maintenance has hopefully resulted in a higher level of utility for my readers. I don’t go crazy with KPIs for my personal blog, but I have been using Google Analytics for the entire existence of the product on this domain so I have a lot of data. I’ll have to see if 2015 becomes the most successful year ever for Muskblog. My blog seems to have been more popular in the beginning before my personal problems just became too much to overcome.
Tag archives is another thing Yoast is against, at least against letting search engines index them. I followed his advice but after all this blog maintenance I was curious as to what some of my more popular tags are, below is partial list:
I really should be studying for the Level 2 CFA® exam. I must pass it this time, my career continues to not go well, Finance is by far the most popular category on my blog as revealed by Google Analytics and yet another Yoast related plugin.