New York Times best-selling author, slow cooking expert, mom of three
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Totally Together

Is Self-Esteem Tied Into SiteMeter?

October 14, 2009 by  

Part 4 of the Business of Blogging Series.

I get emails here and there asking how to attract blog readers, or how to get more web traffic. I really don’t know. I wish I had the magic answer, but I just don’t, so I’m not going to pretend that I do.

When I started the Slow Cooker blog, I needed to learn how to blog. I had just started working for BlogHerads.com, and in order to do my job properly I needed to figure out how to blog. I chose to use a blogspot (Blogger) blog because it was free. I’m all about the free. I knew that I was going to install BlogHerads on the site, and I knew that I wanted to be able to cover the expenses of the groceries I was going to buy.

I asked Jenny what to do, and she said to follow Elise’s advice on her How to Build Blog Traffic. So I did. I followed pretty much everything Elise said to do.

And it worked.

What Jenny didn’t explain, and what Elise didn’t mention, is that it doesn’t matter if your blog isn’t highly trafficked. It’s okay. And you could go a little nutty tracking your stats each day (or each hour, or each fifteen minutes). It might not be good for you to know who is on your site and how they got there and how long they’re on and where they go next.

Trying to write for other people is very difficult. Writing for yourself is fun.

Because I am not interested in going (too) nutty, I have only downloaded the free version of Site Meter, and have stayed away from services that offer too much detail about my readers, or which track where users go after they leave my site. Although I understand that my every click is being monitored by someone, somewhere, I didn’t (and still don’t) feel comfortable with  the idea that I’m being watched, and don’t want to feel Big Brotherish on my own site(s).

Most people don’t agree with me. Most feel like the more info the better, and then they tailor their writing to fit into site demographics. I come from the school of thought that If You Write It, They Will Come.

and, the more you write, the better you will get. And then more people will come. Don’t start out trying to be the best of the best. Start out because you are interested in writing, and are interested in providing valuable content–whether it’s information or entertainment.

It’s okay to tell people about your writing though—-use tools that are at your disposal to bring new readers to your site. If you are on Twitter and Facebook, link to your newest post. Attend blogging conventions, and meet other people with similar values and perspectives.

The internet is huge, but at the same time it can feel really small and tiny.

Make connections, answer questions, and remember that if you’re having fun, others will join in to have fun right along with you.

other posts you might be interested in:

The Business of Blogging series: part 1, part 2, and part 3

Time Management and Social Media: An Oxymoron?

Post a comment · 8 Comments »

Comments

8 Responses to “Is Self-Esteem Tied Into SiteMeter?”

  1. MicheleLB on October 14th, 2009 12:16 pm
    1

    I like your attitude. While I like having traffic on my little blog, I write my blog because it makes me happy. If people swing by, great! If not, it’s not the end of the world. I’ve made some nice connections with other knit-bloggers via comments, and have met many of them in real life. Cool! I’m on wordpress.com, and they have some nice basic stats, but nothing overwhelming. I like it a lot.

  2. Jill Shelley on October 14th, 2009 2:38 pm
    2

    Just have to say that I think you did a great job on Good Morning America this week! How you can look and sound so relaxed on National TV, no less, is beyond my understanding. Your cookbook arrived today and I already have tonight’s dinner in my crockpot! While I followed your crockpot blog all last year, it’s nice to have your recipes all in order and in one place now. :)

  3. 6512 and growing on October 16th, 2009 1:54 pm
    3

    Stephanie,
    Your posts always mirror what you’re trying to convey, (be clear, concise, share helpful information). Thanks again for sharing what you’ve learned so generously. I am trying to wean myself off my sitemeter (or you know, practice moderation), and focus more on simply enjoying the magical process of spinning life into stories.

  4. Leann I Am on October 21st, 2009 12:20 pm
    4

    Sometimes, I think I just feel like I want to be heard. Like somewhere out there is a person who ‘gets it,’ you know? I’ve been known to check back for comments over and over. Did anyone read it yet? Do they like it? I write it for myself, but I post it for others…if that makes any sense! I post it for me, too. But, I have a tendency to be a ‘feedback junkie.’

    That being said, I almost NEVER get comments on my blog. And that’s okay too. After all, I just wrote it for myself, right? And that’s what I’ll keep telling myself.

  5. Alison - surefoodsliving.com on October 21st, 2009 11:26 pm
    5

    I can get one email from one thankful reader and that makes my whole month no matter what kind of traffic I get!

  6. MOMentum on February 14th, 2012 4:04 am
    6

    Wow, thanks for posting this series Stephanie. I’m a little late coming to it, but I’m in the process of deciding if I’m going to take my blog to the next level or leave it alone. I love your work-family balance and professionalism. And I love your site! I’ve fallen in love with my crockpot again. :-) My question with book deals: Is a blog helpful only in getting book deals for the subject you’re blogging about? I’m looking for an agent for my fiction novel and I’m wondering if my food blog will demonstrate I can market myself and use social media or if this is a different animal altogether? Appreciate any thoughts you might have on this. Thx!

    • Stephanie on February 14th, 2012 7:12 am
      6.1

      good morning! “Is a blog helpful only in getting book deals for the subject you’re blogging about?”
      I would say no. I would make sure to let the agent know that you will leverage your social media prowess and contacts to publicize the novel, and will advertise for the new book on your site, etc., but no— writing about the subject matter (especially in this case, as it’s a work of fiction) isn’t necessary.
      A good example of this is Melissa Ford’s novel, Life from Scratch.
      best of luck to you!

  7. Debbie on June 3rd, 2013 7:22 pm
    7

    Hi Stephanie, I don’t usually spend a lot of time reading OP’s blogs. I’m a “Get in and Get out” kind of girl. But following a Pinterest recipe post I found myself knee deep in your blogging hints. Thanks…heaps actually. I have yet to find my niche blog but have a yen to write creatively and your stress free take on starting up your blog has removed some of my reserves. Good work. Oh and as I write this I have a Thai Green Curry percolating away in my kitchen.
    Debbie.

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