I have recently been thinking (*gasp*) a lot about this blog and where it’s going, and whether I can get more out of it. The basic idea behind all this mental high-jumping has been to validate the time I spend blogging, as opposed to doing something productive. I did look into the possibility of putting ads in so that I might earn money from blogging, but realistically this blog is too diverse and doesn’t have a wide enough audience for that to work. However, a look at the visitor stats for my business web site showed a solution which might just be of benefit in a whole load of ways.
As I expect most of you will know, I’m a web designer, running my own freelance web design business from home. This service is mainly directed at churches and Christian organisations, that being my mission at the moment – to equip and serve the Christian community by providing web sites at affordable costs without sacrificing quality. So far business has been fairly slow, with only a handful of clients and many moments of frustration having nothing to do and no money coming in. A look at the visitor statistics for my business web site showed a possible cause – hardly anyone even knows about the site!
The solution came in the form of an idea I had some time ago but which never really took off. I was going to put resources and tips and suchlike on that web site, both to share my knowledge of web design techniques and to show prospective customers what I can do. I think I wrote a couple of articles, but nothing spectacular and nothing of much consequence, and in the end they disappeared from the site without me really noticing. Meanwhile, when I have come across interesting techniques or wanted to review software I’ve ended up doing it here, sharing my thoughts with my faithful blog readers. That’s all very well, but I doubt many of you are necessarily wanting a web site for your church, and if you were you wouldn’t need me telling you about CSS tricks for you to make up your mind.
So, MatthewDawkins.co.uk has now been transferred onto a WordPress system, using static pages to make up the normal informative parts of the site, and using the blog section to post articles about web design and related topics. The idea behind this is that a blog that has a clear purpose is more likely to be listed on search engines and blog accumulators like Technorati. A regularly updated resources section of the web site is likely to be noticed by sites such as Google, meaning it’s more likely to pop up in search results. The more people find their way to my resources blog, the more people are likely to stumble across the other pages advertising my web design services for churches. It’s effectively free advertising. I have registered with Technorati, which will take note of when I add new material, and hopefully over the course of the next few months I can start to create a whole new community! Obviously this means I shall have to spend more time writing tutorials and reviews and stuff, but I actually enjoy that sort of thing. I’ve already got a couple of articles up there to start things off, including a nice one about creating “Apple-like” reflections for photos, and I already have plans for more to come.
The consequence for this blog is that you’ll see fewer geeky posts here. You may think that’s a good thing. Anything I write about web design or browsers or internet technologies will go onto the other blog, and this blog will remain more personal and incidental. I shall continue writing about randomness here, along with interesting thoughts, fun stuff that’s happened, plans and problems with my Mini, religious ramblings, and whatever else I feel like writing that fits into no specific category. Don’t worry, I won’t forget you, I’ll just be writing for two blogs instead of one.