When my blog saw the daylight on November 19th, I envisioned the period between then and January 1st as a nice buffer to get things up to speed and to get myself accustomed to blogging. A nice pre-public period to write a couple articles, provide some body for the blog and fix minor issues that would most definitely surface. January 1st would be the real start of my blog. But things don't always go as planned.
After writing a few articles I got impatient. I quickly convinced myself that the buffer time should include some attempts to figure out how to best promote my blog (talk about some fancy self-deceiving reasoning). So I decided to drop a few links in places where I figured people could appreciate the articles I had written so far. The reaction was bigger than I'd expected.
I got a nice inflow of people visiting, and the publicity resulted in a mention on Max Design's weekly rss article recap (huge recommendation for all web developers). Some very welcome promotion. The statistics (cfr Google Analytics) reflect this:
- 953 unique visitors
- coming from 53 countries
- staying for 5min 48 on average
- viewing 4.59 pages per visit
I won't set any goals for 2008, I'm simply aiming to slowly enlarge the number of readers and see where that takes me.
A website is never really finished, and my blog is no exception. I used this short period of time to optimize a couple of things, even out some small css bugs and optimize my blog for search engines. Above that, several things were added to the blog. A couple of minor additions like quotes and test pages templates, but also two major upgrades were made.
The increase in visitors resulted in a small increase in comments. It didn't take long before extra comment mark-up was necessary (for example adding links or quotes to a comment). Mid December, the possibility to add markup to the comments using markdown syntax was implemented. It was one of the forseen additions that was implemented a lot quicker than initially intended.
A second great addition is the media player. It's an in-house application which supports audio and video, a playlist, subtitles and more nifty features. The implementation on my blog is not perfect yet (still need some profile specific skins) but the result as is, is pretty awesome already. Back-end wise, I was able to keep my blog as clean as before, but above all, I love the extra options it gives me to enhance my articles.
And so we enter the new year with lots of plans and ideas. Apart from keeping up the article flow, the blog will be expanded with a contact form (I really need one, strange how I missed it when I was designing the blog), a better internal and external link interface (so expect more of those) and added media player functionality (hopefully I will be able to add trailers). Above that, new ideas will probably pop up, so I'm looking forward to a new year of internet presence.
When looking back, I'm quite content with the results. Let's see what 2008 brings blog-wise.