Now that we are heading to the 10-year mark next month, I would like to share the state of this blog. This month has been a very frustrating month. Rather keeping my frustrations in, I would like to share how I feel along with future changes.
I have to admit that this month is very frustrating. First off, since July of last year, traffic has seen in a decline mostly due to drop in search traffic. Google, which commands most of the search market share changes their algorithms periodically as seen with Google Panda and Penguin. Since most of my traffic comes from search, the drop can become very demoralizing. This gives me the impression that people aren’t reading the content I created. In other words, I had to make several changes to resolve these penalties.
When I noticed a huge drop of traffic in 2015, I had to make numerous changes. This consists of not having posts that were too short or low quality indexed, removing broken links, etc. Eventually, traffic started to recover in 2017. However, all that work went down the drain recently. It became very noticeable around November with a sizable drop off in traffic that Google’s algorithm killed it again.
In other words, I had to go back to the drawing board. With that, I removed any broken links, not having the archive pages indexed, and removed the rotating blog roll. While there are signs that the traffic is starting to recover, it’s going to be a while before the traffic returns to normal.
The second aspect that is causing me to become demoralized is the lack of comments. Last year, shared my frustrations about this. Comments are very important since not only they possibly give me new ideas for posts and different viewpoints from other people, but also add to the social aspect of blogging. After all, blogging is all about sharing and discussion of ideas. Believe it or not, this is where I do most of my interaction with other people besides social media. Also, I use the number of comments as an indicator that people are reading my posts in addition to likes.
I have to admit that this month has been very frustrating due to the huge drop in comments. When I check other anime blogs, I see that they have a way easier time attracting comments, which adds to the frustration. I have to admit that I haven’t focus too much on social networking or commenting on other blog. I have to admit that the recent editorial’s performance with the lack of comments just push me over the edge.
Despite the frustrations over the lack of comments throughout the years, I haven’t given up on blogging. Regardless of the life situation and college work load while I was in college, I never took a break. From the support from my readers who comment on my blog or like my posts, I was able to continue to share my thoughts on anime along with video games and such. Like most bloggers, it’s hard to not become obsessed over blog statistics and follower counts to see how well his or her blog is doing. I have to admit that I do the same. Of course, combining with the drop-in traffic with the lack of comments, it’s a recipe for disaster with eventual burn out.
I have to admit that at times like these, I want to throw in the towel and retire. I have considered doing so a few times. The only reason I won’t is because if I give up, all the effort, time and money put into blogging would become a complete waste and I would have nothing to show for it. It’s obvious that I won’t be as successful as the big mainstream anime sites out there. At a minimum, I want to see people show appreciation for the content I create either by liking, leaving a comment, or share it on social media. If it’s possible, I may leave a like or comment back on your blog in return. After all, it takes one to several hours to create any post.
With that, since the 10-year mark is near (February 17, 2019), what changes I plan to make on this blog? Once my life situation gets better, I want to redesigning the theme and create a blog mascot by paying someone to commission it. The theme’s overall design hasn’t changed since 2013 and it’s getting dated. Eventually, I want to move away from using WPTouch Pro for mobile if it’s possible and have one unified design that is responsive based on the type of device being used.
Lastly, I have to admit in the past few years, there has been a big drop-off in editorials. In the past, I usually get ideas from reading blogs, forum posts and comments. Lately, there is a drought of ideas on what to make editorial posts for. I have considered participating in possibly joining OWLs so at least I will have a topic or idea to write about while supporting their cause. If you want to see that kind of content, feel free to voice it in the comments.
At the end of the day, I think it’s best to make a personal post and share how I feel regarding my blog once in a while. Obviously, things are going to change, especially since we are heading to the 10-year mark. Hopefully, my life situation will get better as I have a feeling that maybe, I will get a job that I want this year and have my life back. Despite past frustrations, one has to think positive and not let setbacks bother him or her.
With that, have you felt the same way when you look at the stats or followers count and becoming frustrated because it doesn’t meet your expectations? Also, feel free to share other areas I should improve on. (No, we are not replacing comments with Discord, since Discord can’t replace everything.) ¶