Top Posts and Keywords for November 2012

In this 667th post, I discuss my top content, keywords, and income for this website.

Occasionally I’ll do an analysis of my blog content and share it out for others to learn from what I’m doing. Dukeo does this with his monthly blogging stats so I’m thinking about doing it more often, maybe monthly. We’ll see. Here is my attempt at a monthly blog statistics analysis based on data from Google Analytics, Amazon Associates, and Google Adsense.

The spike in traffic you see at the right edge of the image below is from combining all posts from the old Watershawl site into this. Watershawl was averaging over 5000 unique visitors a month with two posts, “Syncing Outlook Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks with Android Using Gmail” and “How to Auto-Forward Text Messages to Email in Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Palm Pre, and the iPhone” getting around 2000 unique visitors each. No doubt these will be the top 2 posts next month. Interestingly, they were originally written for my Geek Hand site, but were folded into Watershawl earlier this year so this is actually their second move. I’ve got a redirection plugin up on Watershawl to redirect traffic to Erich Stauffer for now.

Total visits was 1,544 with 1,417 being unique. There were 2,383 pageviews with 1.54 pages per visit. The bounce rate was 74.61%, which is really high. Most people used Internet Explorer (28%) followed by Chrome (24%), Safari (19.5%), Firefox (18%). Most visits were from the United States with most visitors being from California (128) followed by New York (94), Florida (72), Illinois (61), and Texas (58). Indiana had 38 for comparison. Judging by the use of Internet Explorer, the high content of Florida visitors, and the penchant for Erich Stauffer figurines, I’d say I have an older visitor base that is not interested in what I want to talk about most of the time (more on that later).

Top 10 Content

Of my Top Posts of 2011, the only one to fall out of the top 10 is “How to Delete a Digg Submission“. Regardless of how much I try to write about business, technology, and entrepreneurship, “the organism will do whatever it pleases.” My response to that in the past has been to ‘write more of what people are already looking at’ and sometimes I end up creating an entirely new site out of my most popular content, as I wrote about in Analyzing Actions in September of 2009. One post on Youtube Query String Parameters was turned into an entire site, which was later sold for $145. I did the same thing with the How to Stay Alert and Focused post. I’ve since made a new ‘query strings’-type site called Map Strings that gets most of it’s traffic from How To Run Google Maps On the Kindle Fire EDIT: moved the site here starting on 1/6/2013.

Top 10 Keywords

  • erich stauffer (68)
  • collegeclub.com (31)
  • erich stauffer figurines (17)
  • what happened to collegeclub (14)
  • eric stauffer figurines (12)
  • erich stauffer figurine prices (11)
  • mexican cat (11)
  • arnart porcelain marks (9)
  • collegeclub email (8)
  • erich stauffer figurine (8)
As you might expect due to the domain name, I get a lot of traffic for the keyword and variations of, “Erich Stauffer”, the Arnart Import’s fake Hummel figurine artist I was named after. Second to that, people are still crazy about Collegeclub.com and seem to still wonder where all of their stuff went when it went belly up. Like them, I was interested so I did some research, found out, and shared it on my blog. I just didn’t think that all these years later it would still be some of my most popular blog posts. The “mexican cat” gets linked to a post called “Smarty Cat” through Google Image Search and that is also the reason “My CEO Heroes” ranks well – people are searching for an image of Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks.

Top 10 Sources

  • google.com (89)
  • facebook.com (19)
  • qian8ao.com (11)
  • google.co.uk (10)
  • dogpile.com (4)
  • google.ca (4)
  • m.facebook.com (4)
  • google.com.br (3)
  • iphoneunity.com (3)
  • answers.yahoo.com (2)

I have a pretty active Twitter account so it’s somewhat of a surprise to me to not see Twitter in the referral list, but I did get one (1) referral from Twitter, ranking it at #49. Qian8ao is a “Free Expense-Tracking Application and Personal Finance Community” in China. I’m not sure what link they have pointing to me as Google Analytics can’t resolve it properly and my go-to Google searches aren’t revealing anything, but I’m guessing that it’s not page visits, but a hot-linked image that is causing the count. I post links to this page via my Erich Stauffer Figurines page and the Erich Stauffer page. I have used Yahoo Answers as part of my SEO process successfully for a number of years.

Income Stats

  • Amazon Associates Affiliate Program: 72 Clicks – 0 Items Ordered – 0 Items Shipped – 0 Advertising Fees
  • Google Adsense: $12.74 Estimate

 

Google+ for Business

Pages for Google+

Different people are interested in different parts of your business. Whether it’s breaking news, updates, promotions, links, photos – even talking face-to-face with groups via easy-to-use video chat – Google+ lets you easily share the right things with the right customers. And unlike Facebook, Pages for Google+ can actually help your SEO efforts.

Google advocates putting the +1 button anywhere you’d like people to be able to recommend your business, products or services to friends and contacts all across the web. Google+ makes it easy to learn more about how your followers’ interactions on your page affect your brand, and your business.

We’ve been testing Pages for Google+ for a couple of months now. We ran into one instance where we couldn’t add more pages for our customers, but we found that we were just in a waiting period before being able to add more. This is probably a built-in protection against spamming.

Need help setting up your Google+ Page for your business? We can help.

About Google+

Google+, the search giant’s new social network and answer to Facebook features a new friend list function called “circles”, which has been very positive overall. Users have commented that it’s the easiest system on the market for putting friends into groups, making it easier to share posts with just your business colleagues or your family. We are really interested in the circles option, but it needs more people on there so it doesn’t die like Google Buzz. We like the idea of circles and the integrated video chat/hangout function. They’re not really inventing anything new, just putting things like Facebook groups and Skype-like chat front and center. It becomes a more cozy place to hang out online. Facebook will start to look more stuck up and sterile over time, the same way MySpace started to look more trashy.

We have noticed there are less people requesting to be friends and less friend requests being answered. We think Facebook peaked in 2009 and started to decline after that. But even though numbers are down, they are still number one, for now. It has to do with elasticity, which used in this context means peoples ability to want and except change. In the beginning, when things are new, people are more lenient and will try new things, but over time, ideas harden and change becomes harder. It works with friendships, departments, new businesses, and even social networks. We’ve got high hopes for Google’s inventiveness. The on-demand video chat feature called “Hangouts” is a great idea. Considering it’s 2011, We’re suprised that’s not a feature that we take for granted already.

How to Get More Customers

We did a small test to see what were some of the biggest problems business owners had and what we found was the biggest problem was “How to Get More Customers

We know that in order to get more customers you must first figure out what your customers pain points are – find out what are the things they are complaining about that you can fix – and then determine if they are both able and willing to pay for them. The first part of that question is called a customer interview.

Here’s an example: a business owner complains of having too much spam in their email. You respond by creating or finding a product that helps the client reduce their spam and then asking the customer if they would be willing to pay to have their spam reduced. This is called a solution interview.

Customer and Solution Interviews are part of the Lean Startup methodology, which combines Customer Development and Agile Development to create a more sound Business Model that values learning. Agile and Lean both use iterative processes and the Scientific Method to hypothesize, test, and learn in order to create a product that customers actually want before building it. Once they have this “product/market fit” they built it as fast as possible. Erich Stauffer talks more about this cycle here.

If you’re solving clients problems you won’t have to do much marketing at all – the customers will seek you out. If they aren’t seeking you out, you might not be solving their problems.

How do you identify what your customers pain points are?

The simplest answer is to ask your target client or existing client base what things are bothering them most and when you start to see a trend, you can start to ask if they’d be willing to pay for it to get fixed.

A less effective, but quicker route is to find out where your customers are complaining or seeking out solutions online. A good way to do this is by using Google Discussion Search to search for problems people are sharing on forums and other discussion groups.

We did a test search with the term “my business” and this is what we found:

  • My business keeps disappearing from Google Places
  • I need a slogan for my business
  • I need a logo for my Business and possibly a website
  • I need help getting payments to my business
  • What is the best CRM software for my business?
  • Anyone using Dropbox for business file storage?
  • I need a really good name for my business
  • I need help with my business card
  • A client owes my business money… what to do?
  • Can I request to remove my business from Yelp / Qype?
  • I need help getting my business off the ground
  • How to promote a new site?
  • How many of you have tried Offline Marketing ?
  • What’s your most effective marketing method?
  • What is the most important points of business?
  • How to get more customers?

Once we started noticing a trend, we started recording things we could blog about, solutions for problems like which CRM is best, how to use Dropbox for your business, and how to promote a new website. Our first post is this post, which addresses the last question

How to Get More Customers?

  1. Identify a need by asking or searching.
  2. Find a solution for that need.
  3. Ask potential clients if they would pay for that solution.
  4. If so, write about it. If not, find a different problem or solution.
  5. Once you’ve written about it, promote it using SEO.

Essentially you start out with Lean methodologies, then do content marketing, then finish with SEO. So the key to getting more customers is not SEO, it’s knowing you have a product that solves a problem AND people are willing and able to pay for and then writing up content about it on your “home base” and only then doing search engine optimization.