It’s been a few days since I last uploaded a Diary Update. There is so much to do and so much to write and the more that I write, the more that I discover there is left to write. It would be easier if I were writing this as an expert, but I am not.
The target audience for BloogerMe: bloggers who are more interested in writing articles than in the mechanisms and technicalities of building a blog.
That’s where I started … in my own target audience.
I began to look around.
I had a couple of ideas for nifty niches, but as I was doing my initial research, it became clear to me that there were an awful lot of words out there that didn’t do an awful lot of explaining. Very few of the questions I was asking as a beginner were being answered to the satisfaction of a beginner.
I am building this website just as you are building yours, from the beginning, and I am facing the same challenges. The difference is that I have faced similar challenges many times before and I would like to think that I know what I am looking for. As I make progress, I am writing down everything that I am doing and why I am doing it.
I realised that before I got to develop the nifty niches that I had in mind, I could use my skill and judgement to develop a framework for developing the nifty niches. My plan is to learn about the mechanics of blogging because I am genuinely interested in the mechanics of blogging. I will write down what I learn and then use it to develop my own – nothing to do with blogging – niche sites.
I began thinking that the stuff that I am learning to help me before I begin to blog can help others … before they begin to blog.
I am hoping that my experience – 30 years of building IT and Business systems from scratch – will help me to distil just what you need from the piles of stuff that you don’t need.
It’s been a few days since my last Diary Update, so here is a flavour of what’s been going on. Of course, there will be posts and pages to go along with it all, where it makes sense and adds value to write them.
I noticed a bit of silliness and I have changed the URL Slug for the diary. It didn’t matter for a small number of posts, and I am not going to go back to change them, but it’s not going to be any good when the pile gets big.
Actually, there were two bits of silliness.
The first, I had already fixed by changing the post title from “Today’s Diary” to “BloogerMe Diary”. That was a bit of a schoolboy error: nobody is going to be searching for “Today’s Diary”, are they? If they did, whose “Today’s Diary might they think they might see in the search results?
The URL Slug now begins “bloogerme-diary-…” and is completed with the date (yyyy-mm-dd).
The second oversight – and this is one of the reasons why a site like this is important if you are just starting out blogging – is something that might well go unnoticed … until it’s too late. I had included the day in the Diary URL Slug. So today’s URL Slug would have been “bloogerme-diary-thursday-2020-06-11“. Not a problem until, at some time in the future, I might be asked to list the diary entries in chronological order. A simple list isn’t going to do it as the day gets in the way.
The day has now been excluded from the URL Slug, so the future is once again bright.
After three weeks of writing and messing about with formats, themes, WordPress, plug-ins and other people’s ideas, I took a “three-week snapshot” of my achievements. I had to then give each page its own unique URL, which was a pain and it took me hours! The challenge was that each page in the “three-week snapshot” was a duplicate of its corresponding live page!
I dropped them all of a parent page that I called “3-week-site” and then added “tw” to the front of each URL slug. Then I had to go through each and every page to amend the links. They needed to link to pages within the three-week “snapshot”, not in the current site. All this so that I could, at some point in the future, refer back to the “3-week-site” as a means of setting new blogger aspirations and expectations.
I needed the pages in the 3-week site to reflect established canonical principles.
The 3-week site pages needed to be associated with “3-week-site”. In turn, “3-week-site” needed to be associated with “What does a Blog look like after three weeks?” This is because the “three-week snapshot” pages are a collective example of three weeks of effort and should be treated as a whole. Any browsing of this section should be taken as the visitor checking out the “snapshot” rather than interacting with a single page. I hope this makes sense.
The arrows in the diagram show the direction of the canonnical linking, upwards.
Note: the information content of the “Alzheimer’s Society” page and the “A Brief History of Blog” page is very similar to that on the current site. These two pages are therefore canonically linked to the current pages rather than the 3-week pages.
I have completed the exercise and this part of the site now reflects the diagram above. It was fiddly.
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Data Protection and Privacy Policies
I am not new to Data Protection but up until now, I haven’t had to apply it to this space.
It is becoming more and more apparent that our relationship with personal data is changing. The General Data Protection Regulation is a necessary response to those changing relationships.
The General Data Protection Regulation is NOT a waste of time. It is not unnecessary bureaucracy, or what in the UK we refer to as “health and safety gone mad“.
Social Media Banners
I was looking at the BloogerMe twitter banners, I was looking at the FaceBook banners, and then I got to thinking about Pinterest. I had a look at them all and they are all poor. In my defence, I have been concentrating on writing and other stuff … but they are still poor!
And then I was looking at how I might improve things, and I found Snappa, and I turned this …
… into this …
… in a matter of minutes.
I shall be doing some further investigation but for now, I think Snappa is pretty good. It’s got my vote and I am going to be using it some more.
Affiliate Marketing potential
I am impressed with Snappa, and so I had a look at the affiliate marketing possibilities. I haven’t yet got the stage where I can really have a go at this Affiliate Marketing thing, but I am keeping my eyes open and I am saving up ideas for the future.
A lot of affiliate marketing potential is restricted to sites with significant visitor footfall, which I do not have at the moment. I followed the Snappa Affiliate Marketing links and applied.
If we’re rejected, I am not going to take it personally and I will save it for later. We all have to start somewhere.
Anyway, the application was approved … job done!
But … they pay out using PayPal. I have a PayPal account but for the tax man’s benefit, I want to keep all of the Bloogerme financials neat and tidy. I needed to set up a new PayPal account.
Setting up a Paypal account is easy, I have added it to the “stuff to do before you start blogging” list but I am not going to spend a lot of time explaining how to do it.
I set the account up in the name of my company – the one I have operated through since 2002 – using a company email address, linked to the company bank account … all very tax-man friendly. I’m thinking ahead.
So I have set up a PayPal account, linked it to a bank account and I have then realised that PayPal needed a mobile contact number. I have a mobile number, but I would prefer to keep it for personal calls.
I needed a mobile number that I could associate with BloogerMe – for neatness.
Mobile Numbers for Website Business
So, yesterday, I ordered a new SIM for one of my old, not-very-smart phones, which arrived in the post this morning. I have now set it up and paid a tenner to top it up … that should last several months. I now have a separate mobile phone number for “business” use, and it cost me hardly anything.
I think there are Affiliate Marketing opportunities here too, but that’s for later.
So, I tidied the 3-week old “snapshot”, adding the necessary canonical links.
I then looked at my twitter banners and thought they needed improvement.
I found a neat banner creator site and then I got distracted following up on some Affiliate Marketing stuff.
I set up a PayPal account and then found a cheap SIM-only deal so that I have a mobile number for “business” use.
If you are thinking of making money out of your blogs, the taxman is going to want a cut. It’s a lot easier if you have everything partitioned.
What shall I do next?
BloogerMe Progress: Thursday 11th June
- Week … 15
- Posts … 28
- Pages … 42
- Words … 61,077
- Unpublished Posts … 30
- Users (last 14 days) … 16
- Page Views (last 14 days) … 30
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Let us tell you what’s happening.
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