I'm going to be tinkering on the blog in the days ahead to update some pages and make some minor changes. I'm also going to do something with the blogroll page to bring it up to speed with what I'm actually reading online these days (it's mostly correct now, but I need to delete some inactive blogs and add new ones.)
While I'm doing this I thought blogging as a theme might be fun for this week on PBW, so to kick that off, here are
Ten Reasons Why Your Weblog Traffic is Down
(plus suggested solutions!)
All You All the Time: You are not only your favorite topic, you are your only topic. As fascinating as you are, maybe talk about someone or something else once in a while?
Blame Games: You update only to keep telling us that you're not blogging because of a lengthy, complicated and completely unresolved problem with you partner/spouse/ex/kid/boss/neighbor. You do have our sympathy, but we always wonder if they're posting somewhere else blaming you for the same thing. So try blogging for a week straight without pointing the finger of writing woe at anyone else.
Boxing: Everyone is entitled to their own little soap box. Clubbing us over the head with it every time we visit your blog, however, gets old real fast. Stick it in the closet by having a cause-free month of posting on your blog.
Excessive Advertising: We don't mind most advertising on blogs; I ignore it entirely. That said, if your blog takes five minutes to load because of your ads, or you allow unsavory entities to buy ad space on your blog, or we have to wade through nine of those idiot popup ad windows to get to your content? We're gone. Try reworking your advertising to be simpler, less obtrusive, and please do remove any obnoxious, in-the-face ad widgets you've been using.
Facebook/Twitter Duped: You no longer post any content except copies of your Twits or links to your Facebook posts. If anyone wanted to read this schlock wouldn't they be already following you on Twitter or friending you on Facebook? Take a vow to only post original content on your blog. Or delete the blog and stick to Twitter and Facebook.
Problematic: You natter on about your personal problems in every post, invite helpful responses (most of which end up being pretty varied and good) and then shoot every single one of them down as for some special reason unworkable for you. Which makes us think you don't want any help, Snowflake, and we're going to be listening to you do nothing but bitch for the rest of eternity. Look, all kidding aside, you are probably entitled to be miserable; lots of folks are. But when people try to help you, and you kick them out the door, how often do you think they'll come back? Try to write about something else on your blog; something that offers help to others -- and when you do ask for help, try at least one of the suggestions you're given. Who knows, it may actually work.
Selfie-ish: This is personal and not really reasonable, but I am not a fan of selfies. I don't even like the word. So if you're positing a new one every day, count on me to stay away. I'm not sure how to solve this if you're a fan of taking pictures of yourself; maybe transfer it over to Faceboook, or start a Tumblr blog just for your selfies?
Sorry Excuses: You have not posted anything for the last six months to a year except random/occasional posts making the same sad old non-specific excuses as to why you're not blogging. These include but are not limited to stall-tactic post topics like Wow, My Lousy Day Job Has Sucked Up All My Writing Time; Facebook/Twitter/Whatever Has Eaten My Brain and OMG I've Been SOOOOOO Busy. The next time you think about whining on your blog about why you're not blogging, don't. If you can't blog, shut it down. If you still want to blog, get the ball rolling by writing one new post per week about any topic except why you haven't been blogging.
TMI: Hmmmm, hard to define this one. Okay -- if you're regularly posting content that make your Mom immediately shriek in horror, it's probably going to send most of us packing. Really the only way to combat this is to make your blog private and/or invitational-only. Someday, when you're forty and applying for an important job, you'll thank me.
Untimely: You have begun the last six posts on your blog with some variation of Gosh is it already [insert month or holiday]? Unless you've been hospitalized from a near-fatal car accident, this never fools anyone into thinking you've completely lost track of time for the last half-year. Quit faking the astonishment and tell us what you've been up to while you've been away from your blog. Or jump right into whatever season it is and post something on how to help celebrate it.