Thursday, July 12, 2007

19,000 Free Blog Hits in 59 Hours -- Give Your Googlers What They Want...Then Keep Them Updated

by Paula Neal Mooney

Statsaholic that I am, Tuesday morning I woke up and checked the stats of this blog via StatCounter.com to see what was going on.

I was amazed that under "Recent Keyword Activity" -- a feature I absolutely love the most on StatCounter that gives you the real-time search terms people are typing in to find you -- that lots of people were searching for the DC Madam's client list, a story I'd heard about a while back that interested me, so I blogged about it.

Turns out the DC Madam had published her clients' phone numbers on her website Monday night, and lots of people wanted the list.

So much so that this blog has blessedly received about 19,000 pageviews in the past 60 hours. And here's what I've learned about getting more blog hits:

1 - Let your searchers give you the news

Check your recent, real-time keyword activity often.

Readers on the net can break a story a lot faster than network news sites. If you notice a pattern of several people searching for the same topic, investigate.


2 - Make it easy for them to find

Obviously people were searching for the actual DC Madam's list of names and numbers, but when I typed those search terms in Google, I was surprised that I had to dig a bit to find them -- and even more to find the DC Madam's own website!

This is always good news when you have to search a bit -- that means you can get those people typing in the obvious search terms that you've typed in that haven't been able to find anything yet due to bad SEO.

Thank GOD I'd used obvious and popular search terms like "DC Madam phone list" when I first labeled and titled the post, so that piece was already indexed deep in Google.

3 - Be prepared to move fast with updated information

It was cool that I was getting all those hits, but I realized I wasn't exactly giving the people what they wanted, which, according to the recent keyword activity, was Deborah Jeane Palfrey's actual list, her website, etc.

I decided to update the old post with more recent info as I found it, making the post more useful to anxious wives and guilt-ridden politicos searching for familiar cell phone numbers -- or investigative reporters seeking out big wigs -- on the list.

4 - Change the title of the post to bring in more people

I'd originally titled my post "DC Madam List of Names and Numbers...Everybody wants you" but changed it to "DC Madam List of Names and Numbers...Here are the numbers" to stand out in the crowd of clickers.

(This is after you've made sure your post title name precedes your blog name in the search engine listings as I described in my Blog Traffic Sucking? post, but be warned that this change will screw around with your ability to rearrange and save your page elements in Blogger -- but I've found the change to be worth it all.)

Note that the URL...

http://paulamooney.blogspot.com/2007/05/dc-madam-list-of-names-and-phone.html

...is gonna stay the same as when you first saved it (guess that's why they call it a PERMAlink, huh?) no matter what you change the blog post title to, so make sure to get those good keywords in from the jump.

And try not to misspell a good keyword in the URL like I've done in the past, 'cause you can't change it. (But maybe you'll get the bad typers.)

5 - Make sure to update the post's date and time

I've noticed that when I place a current date and time in my old Blogger posts and republish them, Blogger is now smart enough to put the most recent post where it belongs, on my front page. (WordPress was probably already smart enough to do this -- depending on if the blog has most recent posts set up to appear on the front page.)

6 - Get the jump on a story to get to the top of Google

Updating my post's date and time helped get it to the number #1 spot in Google for certain search term combos, beating out The Smoking Gun and The Washingon Post.

I noticed that Google puts the post date (and even time, sometimes) next to the search listing, so the more recent your post, the better it may fair in search engine listings.

Also, I'm sure this blog's Google Pagerank of 5 plays in there somehow.

But another important factor is to blog about something that interests you when you first hear about it. Sometimes those stories will go nowhere, sometimes they'll explode...

7 - Create a whole new website around what people want

There are days when you write strictly for your loyal readers -- hence this post ;-)

Then there are days when you write mostly for search-engine traffic. And sometimes that search-engine traffic amazes you with what they want.

Like how they responded in droves to my VideoHybrid post, an afterthought of a post that contained great keywords in the URL.

The unexpected popularity of that post led me to create the Watch Free TV Shows Online post, whose enormously popularity led me to create an entire website dedicated to helping people find full and partial episodes of their favorite TV shows and movies online for free.

The Watch Free Episodes site already has 385 email subscribers alone in about a month, compared to about only 150 email subscribers for this blog in nearly two years!

That tells me that grabbing niche readers for sites like watching TV online seems an easier task.

And I wouldn't have known any of this had I not listened to my readers.

(Pay no attention to this, just trying to get a PageRank for my Find the Answers blog.)

18 comments:

maurizio said...

I don't know what is happening to me, but lately I find myself not agreeing to what you say. (and you don't even reply my email which makes me sad and worried)

Anyway, I don't agree with your 5th point. I don't like to see old posts modified. I remember for example your now famous 2nd list. You should have written two posts instead of taking the old one and updating it. Some blogger (and some software too) doesn't recognize it as a new one and discard it. I was almost doing it with the list, but then I noticed something different and I read it.
Be aware of that.

Anyway, how r u doin?

Paula Neal Mooney said...

Hey Maurizio -

Thanks for checking in on me.

Yeah, for my 2nd blogger salaries list I did create a new URL and completely new post from the 1st one.

I just meant that for this DC Madam post that was getting such good SERPS results in the first place and bringing in good traffic, I updated the same well-indexed post with more current info to help my readers even more with new info.

I noticed that the post moved to the number #1 position in Google (and is still there for certain search-term combinations.)

I'm doing well -- how are you?

I haven't checked my AOL mail in a few days, and I'm doing great with all the work.

Take care,
Paula

Jim.Legington said...

Hey there Paula,

Congrats on the pageviews.
You are sharing and that is good, because when You help enough other people get what they want, then You can have anything You want. Most everyone knows that Quote is from Zig Ziglar and it's true because it is Bible based.

Thank You Paula again for the Digg
of that our Brand New Updated Free Report on Why Viral Marketing Illustrated. Stand by, we are now planning a nomination for You this
coming sunday evening. Be Blessed
always!

Don Simkovich said...

I noticed my page views jump quite a bit when I wrote about the Apple iPhone, a trip on Spirit Airlines and posts about Donald Trump developing real estate in Baja.

Of those 19,000, what was your click through rate for adsense or other ads? Did they really click through or just leave?

I was writing about corporate customer service and I saw a story about Sprint discontinuing service to 1,000 customers. That would have fit well with my blog's posts last week, but I was already on to a few real estate posts . . . but in the future.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

I wish I had as much time as you to investigate all of this stuff...Miss McMoney Mooney :-)

Paula Neal Mooney said...

Thanks Jim and Bonnie -
Hmmm...what's gonna happen Sunday?

Hey Don!
Actually my click-thru rate on the WatchFreeEpisodes.com site is better than this one, I got about the same number of clicks in the past 7 days on both sites.

Yet WatchFreeEpisodes.com had about 1/3 of the pageviews of this one.

So that's another reason I see why people can make money with a good and interesting niche site.

Thanks,
Paula

Riemann Shah said...

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Ad Tracker said...

I just found your site and am so INSPIRED! I can see it's going to be a long night of reading. Thanks!

tAnYeTTa said...

Hi Paula!

I have to confess, I was a little confused when I saw the post. I kept thinking is this an old post? I saw a comment that I left awhile ago, but, you know how clueless I am with all this blogging so, I was just going along with the flow. And you know I clicked on the phone bill to make sure my husband's number wasn't on there. LOL haha.....I'm so crazy!!!!!

Smoking Christian said...

HI PAULA! I have noticed the same thing by accident. It makes me think that a lot of people must have been disappointed when they realized my titles mean just about nothing. I liken it to the title of a Led Zepplin song and the actual song.

Now I try to avoid titles which will mislead the general populace. My opinions on current events mean nothing. I'm more interested in the events that aren't happening.
Like something meaningful.

But, you know me. I'm the Mooney who lost his mind and was too lazy to go looking for it.

PM

Paula Neal Mooney said...

Hey Ad Tracker
Glad to have been a source of inspiration.

Tanyetta
You know I was looking at those lists to for my 330 area code!!! I'm with ya...

Hey Peter Mooney
I'm glad you stopped by with your funnies. I miss your writings.

Guess I'd better go see what's doing in Smoking Christian land.

Paula

Tricia said...

Your lucky that you're on blogger and not hosting on a private web host as those kind of hits - depending on your regular traffic and your account could have caused problems!

I've done that before with a few posts. I think my best one was when Saddam was hanged. I got a lot of hits from that one. Still do actually.

The Old Vic said...

Hi Paula,
Excellent post again. How did you get so high up in the rankings to get 60,000 visitors ? I just had a similar but contrary experience - I wrote a post about John Mackey aka Rahodeb on my financial blog -sharescity.com - I got a few more visitors than usual but when I look for my post on Google it languishes on page 10 of the blog search and nowhere to be seen on Google web search ! How about a post about how to make sure Google gives your posts a good ranking ? :-)

cooliojones said...

You've given me some more great ideas! I'm loving this blog more and more.

Kuanyin said...

Hey, I finally made it to your site. I've seen your face in my Blog-Blond sidebar, and now I've discovered what an excellent writer you are. This was an excellent post btw.

MB Web Design said...

A fascinating post - savvy bloggers are often beating world class news outlets to the punch with reactions to current affairs, which is fantastic, it's good to see Joe Public on a level playing field with the Corporations.

Anonymous said...

SONG OF DEBORAH
..they chose new gods then was war in the gates.. awake awake deborah utter a song.. the Lord gave you dominion over the mighty.. curse you bitterly the inhabitants thereof who came not to the help of justice against the mighty.. they divided the prey, to every man a damsel or two.. let all thine enemies perish o Lord and the land rest forty years..

Deborah palfrey deserves the Pemberton Award for Clean Governance.
Palfrey list is like the Black Book of 1918.
That trial of the Century is deleted from all books, cursed be reporters.
The list there had 47000 names.
The list here has 46000 phone bills.
The listed are not womenizers, machos or ordinary sinners.
They are power brokers gay lutheran shock and awe agitators of all wars and all panics.
These wretches are one dirty cover to the real pimps deep underground.
A curse on the kingpins, Justice Charles Darling then and Judge Adolph Kessler now.

Noel Pemberton-Billing
Trial of the Century 1918

Eugene said...

Thanks for sharing your secrets with your readers I find that to be a rare quality only in your blog, even blogs about IM doesn't share critical info with their readers.
I called them secrets coz I really benefit from reverse engineering what others do, more than what they say. however in your case your actually giving us (your readers) all the pieces of the puzzle.
thank you, god bless you Paula

Paula Neal Mooney