Saturday, December 01, 2007

This is a Traffic Whore's Nightmare

Yes, I said "traffic whore."  Don't like it?  Quit while  you're ahead.  It's not going to get anymore pleasant.

So, here I am, working my ass off on a manuscript that, if I can just blow my own horn for a moment, is pretty dang good.  I pour it out for this stupid thing, right?  And about three times a week I'm publishing the fruits of my labor online for the ungrateful and undeserving masses on the Internet 2.0 to read and enjoy.

Mind you, I get some hits.  I have three loyal readers, as far as I can tell.  On the other hand, every once in a while I get huge spikes in traffic and the numbers get all discombobulated, leading me to believe that I've suddenly been "discovered" and soon will have major publishing houses throwing offers at me left and right.  Then things settle back down and I'm back to my more normal 10-12 hits per day, tapering to a lulling 3, or sometimes just 1.  When those days come, I know that the three hits are either my wife, or the three faithful readers aforementioned.

I took the advice of a Stranger and tried not to worry too much about traffic.  I figure, the writing was for me mostly.  Blogging is a hobby for me, not an obsession, and it certainly ain't payin' the bills. So, I figured, chillax, dude.  Settle.  Don't freak about the amount of traffic you get, or you're going to go nuts.  The Internets are a crazy group of peeps, and who knows what they want?

So, I looked into SEO and what that might do to assist me with driving traffic to my site, but learned quickly that, unless you're selling something, it's not worth the amount of effort and potential cost it takes.  It's not worth the amount of junk mail I'd get as a result of registering with all the teeny-tiny little search engines that don't charge for indexing your page, either.  So ... meh.

No problem.  I just frenetically watch my numbers fluctuate from week to week and day to day, and pull my hair out wondering what the hell these people want from me.

Then I come home from work -- back in the days when I had work -- and my wife says, "I got 43 hits on my page today!"

I beamed. I was proud as a proverbial peacock with my peahen.  (I have a different word I like to use in that spot, but LOML won't let me.  She says it offends her.  Pff.)  "Wow!" I respond as a supportive husband should, "that's great, love!  Was that your football page?"

See, a while back, I posted something about football and my blog got really good traffic.  I knew I couldn't do that all the time, though, because I have a full-time job and don't like the amount of research and effort that has to go into posting a real sports-column type of piece.  So I patted myself on the back and went about my business of writing the fiction piece my wife just wouldn't let die.

Sometime after that, my wife started making football picks on her blogs.  She'd pick which team she thought would win the week's games and why, and she had a lot of fun with it.  But it didn't drive her traffic up.  Later, she decided to dedicate one of her three blogs to the football picks and leave the others for non-sports related items, like this post.

So, anyway -- back to the story.  So I asked if it was her football blog that was so busy and she excitedly ejaculated -- not in a good way, either -- "NO!  It was my Wordpress page!"

I was stunned.  We looked at her numbers ... from several different sources.  All we found was a consistently high number of hits from all the site counters she has going.  (Yeah, she's a traffic whore too.)

I was flabbergasted, and thought maybe her new bud Sherri had done something to send people her way.  Or maybe it was the aforementioned Stranger, who's done that for me more than once.  But we couldn't determine the cause.  And laughing, we figured it would probably pass.

It didn't.

She's getting about 30-40 hits per day on her blog now.  Everyday.  Even on weekends.  From all over the world.  And given that her blog profiles all profess her Christianity, she's getting hits from places in the Muslim world too (today had Jordan among its listings).  None of them are commenting on the posts, but she's got one busy little blog now for someone that says she's not trying to get traffic and doesn't have anything interesting to say.  She also is as giddy as a spoiled li'l rich bitch just getting her first Ferrari on her sweet 16 about this, and her smile is as broad as my ass.

She's saying now that the word "wallpaper" is the search term drawing people to her site.  I don't even think she's ever used the word "wallpaper" on her blog.  What the hell would she write about wallpaper?  We don't have wallpaper in our home.  We don't do a lot of searching for Windows wallpaper.  We don't create Windows wallpaper.  We don't use wallpaper in any of our posts.


Meanwhile, I slave away, pouring heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, spit, urine and a couple of other bodily fluids I won't mention here into the fiction work -- and it's work, bitches! -- and get my standard spikes of almost 30 hits every few days before settling back into my single-digit count again.

Wallpaper.  Fucking wallpaper.  Wallpaper wallpaper wallpaper!  I feel like Jan Brady, for God's sake.

Wallpaper.  Breasts.  Wallpaper.  Nude.   Porn.  SEX.  Hardcore.

There.  THAT oughtta get me some eff'ing hits.


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