As of the first of November , The Jittery Goat received its 2,200 plus “Follows.” What does that mean?
One might think that means there are 2,200 followers. One might think if I posted something at least 2,200 “Follows” would click to my blog and at least see what’s going on.
“Follows” are sort of a wink and a nod thing; you follow me and I’ll follow you and together we (all of us) can sit back and brag about how many “follows we have.” Yet there are genuine “follows,” but few in comparison with the reported number.
If you blog to gain some sort of a following I don’t know what to tell you; it is likely not going to happen. Very simply you must love to write and if one person reads what you have written than that is one more person that enjoyed your writing than if you never wrote at all.
The “Follow” and “Like” button WordPress offers are nice, in fact they’re great. Yet, they are a bit disingenuous. That’s not to say I don’t appreciate them. I love every last one of them, but they are in no way indicative of the number of people who actually read a blog.
I think a “like” on your blog just means that person has visited and left their DNA behind. There’s no proof they read or committed a crime, it just means they’ve been there. Again, many who do hit the “like” button genuinely like what you have written.
This year I’m averaging a little more than 150 visits a day. That’s over double last year and ten times the year before.
I suppose to be a successful blogger (100,000 visit’s a month) a video of me mooning the President would have to be posted. (Erase that from your mind – it‘s not pretty.)
Nevertheless, I’d like to pass on some things I’ve learned about blogging and gaining more viewers or readers.
1. You must write reasonably well.
2. You should have something interesting, amusing, informative, entertaining, or humorous to say.
3. You must write often. If you are a writer you should write everyday anyway.
4. You must go to other sites and post links back to your blog.
Rather than leave a long comment about a subject on a news article that interest you, take time to write something on your blog and link from the news article in the comment section back to your blog. Why take up their space? Linking gives you a chance to articulate your thoughts more fully. Some readers may accuse you of pimping or something like that. They should go write their own blog.
5. Become a part of forum that encourages you to write. This will draw viewers to your blog. As an example, in January of 2013 The Goat had 2868 views. On February 1, 2013 I started to participate in the Daily Prompt sponsored by Worpress. That month there were 3,022 views. It has not been below 4,000 a month since March 2013. In May 2013 one of my Daily Prompts was featured as a part of Freshly Pressed. That month there were 7,310 views and that carried over to 5,888 views for the next month.
All the other things that are supposed to attract traffic seems like a lot of work to me. I’ve read about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and I think that’s just made up thing to give geeks a place to be geekier.
There’s this thing about having plenty of links. Some geek said the search engines somehow notices that and gives a higher rating on searches. I have a theory; if you do all that work you might get 1 more visit out of a 1,000. That’s not even a hair on a flea’s butt.
Let’s be realistic, our lives are not all that important that we should be blabbing about every unusual event in our mundane lives so we should not be disappointed if no one finds us interesting.
Lastly, it’s stupid to pay for traffic. It’s like handing out free samples of stuff nobody likes anyway.
This is not written to discourage anyone. It’s just a sober message.
When I write something on my blog all I think of about ten people and myself. That’s all I’m write for.
Final thought; eventually you will find an audience, maybe not as big as you like – just write good stuff.