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Monday, February 18, 2008

Achieving milestones

Happy Birthday to myself today on Feb 18th! Today is also my 100th posting! No big deal considering that when Zewt wrote his 100th posts, he had 30,000 visits already. I only have a fraction of that, let me see, 883 visits? What the heck - drinks on me! Free flow susu kacang to all of you! Freshly made and still warm. Thanks for visiting my humble blog all this while.

This blog started in September 2007. At that time, I had no idea what a blog was at all. Then I found out that blog is actually short for web log or an internet form of personal diary. The difference I see from a regular website and a blog is that a blog has more dynamic entries, updated regularly. To make your blog noticeable by the internet community, you have to post daily.

When I started, I had no idea what I was going to write about. I think the most important reason that I started this was to force myself to learn as much and as quickly as possible about making money online. I bought this best-selling book (Secrets of Internet Millionaires) from Stuart Tan to find out how to go about doing this. Then when he left a comment on one of my posts, I took it as a sign - like the star of Bethlehem is beckoning upon me.

There are blogs with specific topics like 5xmom's Make Money Online blog and there are blogs on personal life such as Kenny Sia's blog. There are part-time bloggers and there are full-time bloggers. Then there is a also the problogger, as defined by 5xmom in her post here. In a nutshell, these guys do everything from writing to the more technical aspect of coding, and they are supposed to be very willing to share their knowledge. Sounds like Jedi master thing to me, but I guess I haven't met one yet.

For a start, I decided then it was easier to just write anything that comes to mind and captures my attention. Maybe just allow the blog to take shape freely. And allow me the freedom to explore different areas before I choose a niche topic.

It is a lot of tough work. In the beginning I had to deal with the blogging platforms, editing and publishing tools. I had to learn a little of HTML and CSS coding. Thankfully, the internet is vast with useful information and Google search is so good at sifting through the tons of websites to supply you with the relevant ones (downloading scripts etc.)

So I set some goals. I wanted to experiment with the different methods to improve your site ranking and traffic. My strategy was to double the number of posts each month as I built towards the habit of one post per day. It seems this is especially important for new websites wanting to be indexed quickly.

I think this paid off as my traffic had a modest increase and if you type "susu kacang", you will see my blog in the first page of the Google search results.

Since I was able to write around 20-30 posts that month, my next goal would logically be to maintain my performance. In addition, I would like to write some articles for submission to websites like eZine.

To be honest, it is very tough to keep up like that. Firstly, writing is not my forte. Secondly, I can only work on this at night when I am "off from work".

Still, when I see people like Zewt or Ladan appearing on my mybloglog widget, I am slightly more encouraged to push on.

There are two things I am experimenting with now. Number one is joining social networks like Facebook, MyBlogLog, Imeem etc. to reach out to interested readers. Number two is employing SEO tactics such as using "hot" keywords. Both of these techniques have brought me more readers. My traffic almost doubled when I used terms like pubic hair and pussies. There was a spike in my traffic when I mentioned the names of Hong Kong actors and actresses involved in the recent sex scandal. These are all very interesting and actually I won't have noticed this if Amy had not brought this up.

I would like to begin niche themes as soon as possible. It would be interesting to see how different the results would be compared to this blog.

Window dressing also plays a role in attracting readers. I have changed the look of my blog a few times already. I am quite pleased with the current design which I optimized with Mozilla Firefox. I spent some time tweaking the design to accommodate other browsers like the Internet Explorer. It seems however Internet Explorer does not support certain features. So it is best to view this blog (and other blogs) using Mozilla Firefox.

In the process of running my blog, I had to learn other softwares such as Adobe photoshop, dreamweaver, flash etc. So, overall, I believe this is a value-added experience.

Of course, there is a price to pay for. After hours and hours of blogging daily and insufficient rest, I think I am developing repetitive strain injury (RSI) on my right elbow (feels like a tennis elbow). This is not a good sign as it shows that I am overworked. And sleepy now. I have less exercise and that is not good. So I try to squeeze in some time doing rope skipping and a bit of body stretching.


My 39th birthday was a simple and quiet affair. Amy bought a cake to celebrate the occasion. The same cake that I bought for her birthday last month and our good neighbors gave us for Christmas last year - Philippines style yam cake. How come nobody got me any presents? :( Maybe Zoey will get me one next time, hahahaha (waiting).

Well, I guess that's all for today.


CY said...

May you grow old (up?) a little wiser and healthier.
It is heartwarming to read all that u've written. Never thought u would finally 'pen' it down in this blog even though I knew all along that you have what it takes to do so (write).

Susu Kacang said...

Hey thanks! Not easy to admit old. Especially when I don't think I am getting any wiser or healthier. There you go, thanks for the reminder. Happy reading!

zewt said...

happy birthday... take it easy... i am sure with hard work...you will make it big one day... cute baby you have there...

Susu Kacang said...

thanks zewt....got a lot to learn from you. you write very well and interestingly. it if fun to read your blog. yeah, zoey is a blessing. we're lucky parents.