Monday, April 06, 2009

Pitfalls of Blogging 101: PageRank

It's that time again when PageRank numbers are assigned. That usually means many bloggers are "up in arms" after "losing" what is perceived as "valuable" PR: Some think that "PR is something bloggers obsess over, as if it’s the b and end all of website ownership."

Where the Hell Did My Pagerank Go?

My blog has had high PR numbers and low ones. Here's the plain, simple, shocking truth: I have earned more money via Google AdSense and other ads running on this humble weblog when my PR measured 3 or 4 than when it measured 6 or 7. HUH?

There are FIVE types of bloggers:

A-List ... bloggers such as Michelle Malkin, TechCrunch, XiaXue, Drudge (mmore of an aggregator than a blogger) ... they attract hundreds, thousands of visitors in the blink of an eye BECAUSE websurfers are clicking in to see the latest post, no matter what that post may be.

B-List ... bloggers with an established "in-house" network. Digital friends who, besides posting original, interesting articles on their blogs, use the blogs as one would a social network. Chattting back and forth in comments and C-boxes. Think Bobby Revell, Maricua...

C-List ... this is where you (and I) fit in. Blogs that have X number of daily visits, X representing an average number as determined by your sitemeter. It could be 100, 500, 1000. It always stays within a certain range, BUT, once in a while traffic will spike if a search engine zeroes in on a particular topic or person you have blogged about.
I have one blog that gets 400 hits a day, everyday, and I haven't posted a single new entry on it since 2005!
This particular blog you are reading right now rarely gets a visitor to the so-called "home-page" - people click in to read specific posts as directed from search engines and other blogs, and 10% of the time click through/back to see what "home" looks like.

D-List ... similar to B and C, but visits per day are 25 and under. These are folks who keep a blog more for themselves and a few close buddies, but they do include C-boxes and advertising. They are rarely noticed otherwise, although if I see an interesting photo or post on one of them I will place the link in one of my "Around The Blogosphere" aggregate posts.

Private Blogs ... these are D-Listers who have blogs that can only be accessed with passwords, which are given out sparingly. Some celebrities I know use this kind of blogging approach. Some LiveJournal blogs fall into this category, even non-password protected ones.


No matter which of the above categories you and your blog fall into, you may want to just take a moment and think about where you would like to go with your blog.

Put your plans down on paper. Make a checklist of things you would like to do and have at them.

Example: I always wanted more dialog in my comments. It just wasn't happening. So I added Haloscan comments and kept the Blogger comments. Then I installed a C-Box, and a Facebook widget which is updated via anything I might Twitter. Now that's INTERACTIVE! I'm also a MyBlogLog member and I am slowly making progress attracting followers via Google Connect.

Ads are optional. Don't plan on making hundreds more than a few dollars, but if you get a spike in traffic that pumps up your ad revenue, buy yourself a present!

My plan for the rest of 2009: no big changes on the horizon, other than getting a bit closer with a couple of those B-Listers (once I have a reliable netbook that I can carry around with me - the essence of a good B-Lister is being able to hop on the internet anytime - and sometimes B-listers get up into A-List territory!) Also, I know what works and what doesn't, as far as this blog goes.

If you've been writing me or leaving C-Box messages asking to be linked to, I haven't forgotten about you and I am not ignoring you! Next tiem I perform a major template update, I'll take care of you. For now, be patient but feel free to stop by my C-Box once a day and leave a link to your newest post! ALL ARE WELCOME HERE!

Last word: beware of those PR widgets! Some will install things on your blog that you don't want - like popup ads and keyloggers!

Feel free to share your feedback with me by leaving me a comment using either "comments" feature below. If you have any questions, I’ll be happy to help answer them for you. Take a moment to subscribe to my RSS Feed and be sure to start following me on Twitter.

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