A Year A Blogging

The Bad Plus, Silence is the Question

My blog has been alive for over a year now, so I thought I’d look back and see who’s looked at it; what have they looked at and commented on; how did people find it; what did they search for, etc. It all started in January 2010 when I made a new year’s resolution to write a blog. I didn’t know if it would work, i.e. I’d keep blogging regularly or if anyone would read it. The blog name, Silence is the Question, came from a song title by a band I like, The Bad Plus.Looking back, I’ve really enjoyed posting about things. Mainly about stuff I do, like triathlons, golf, travel and general goings on in Ireland. I do get a bit of a thrill when I see people posting comments or linking to my blog from their site. I’ve now got it integrated with Twitter and Facebook.

So what do the stats say?

Well my blog has received over 2,000 hits since January 2010. Things were quiet enough through 2010, but picked up once I started posting more in 2011. April 2011 has been the most successful month to date. My most popular post was “Cycling in Gran Canaria”, followed by “Connemarathon 2011: Mossy and Dave into the West”. My least popular post was “Killer Whales: what do they do?” with one measly visit. And I thought Free Willy was such a good movie, no?

Most people have arrived at the blog through a link on Facebook or by visiting www.davidpower.ie. My Twitter account has also provided lots of visitors, with a veteran of the blogging sphere, Lucy Aughney, pushing traffic my way as well. The search words that people use to find my site is real interesting (as well as being funny, ridiculous and darn strange).

What keywords do people search for??

Oddly enough, my top keyword is “aviva stadium”. I did a few posts about going to a few matches in the Aviva over the summer, but didn’t think my match reports would compare to reading The Irish Times or following Ken Early on Twitter. Even stranger was my 2nd most popular keyword “play del ingles”. Note it’s not even the right spelling for Playa del Ingles in Gran Canaria. Obviously my post on cycling in the Canaries is popular with people who can’t spell. Third place goes to “connemarathon 2011” and I think this was down to me posting the evening of the race, combined with the Connemarathon organisers taking 2-3 days to post results online. I know this frustrates race goers as everyone logs on that evening to see how they did. That also showed me how fast Google now indexes blog posts – they’re searchable almost immediately.

 

Search engine logic throws up some funny results…

Some of the funnier keywords people have used include: 4 people typing “messi”, so maybe I do show glimpses of Barca genius on the football pitch; “ibrox” so maybe I am a closet Rangers fan?; “i love nobody but i love f.c.barcelona”; “the old guy who runs around dublin with no top” – definitely not me although I did see him during the freezing snowy period running topless; “girls+muck” sounds nice J; “jackie healy rae plain people of ireland dinner in middle of the day” – haha I did search for that once; “picture of a decrepit runner” – I’m not that old and tired yet! and even “aviva stadium toilet seat”. So the world’s your oyster when it comes to searching online!

So what have I learned?

Blogging is a great way of capturing a moment in time – so when I eventually do sit down and write my autobiography I’ll have half the hard work done already. Seriously, it is a great way to remember a feeling/thought/emotion. Ok ok, many of you will probably say why not talk to a real person instead of telling Microsoft Word and the entire internet. Fine, I do that also, but people forget stuff quickly. In 6 months I won’t remember all the little details of how I felt when I finish a good race, or all the stupid things that happen when you’re on holidays. It’s like taking a photo, only nobody says cheese and has to look awkward.

So plans for 2011 are to keep blogging – maybe a bit more in Spanish or Irish (although that experiment failed last year). I’d also like to broaden out the list of topics I post about. It shouldn’t just be about what I did last weekend.

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