What Worked For Me This Year And What Will Be Happening In The Year To Come...
As 2007 draws to an end its time to look back at the successes for my websites and what I will be concentrating on in 2008.
This site has seen growth in all areas throughout 2007. Visitors and page views are up, we're well on our way to 500 content rich pages, and income from contextual and affiliate advertising schemes are doing well, with an especially good Christmas period.
The big change came in the summer, when I took a long hard look at the quality of the content I was creating. I decided that most of it just didn't stand out from the crowd; there was no reason for visitors to bookmark pages, link to them or recommend to friends. I changed 3 things. I started to spend more time writing the copy to make the articles and reviews more comprehensive. Secondly added video content where I could to make the reviews more interesting, and lastly I included contact forms so Surfers could ask questions about the articles and reviews.
The addition of Video, especially the ones I've made myself, I think make the product reviews a lot better. The fact that my Youtube vids have over 100,000 views also means that I'm getting extra visitors from the url's in the descriptions and also from viewers typing the address into their browsers.
Adding the contact forms has been a great success; I'm getting several emails a day full of great questions and problems. I reply to each one, and if appropriate the question and answer get published on the relevant page. I believe this keeps the page "fresh" in the eyes of the search-engines, adds great content that I wouldn't otherwise have thought of, and adds value to each surfers visit.
So what's in store for 2008 for www.sciuridae.co.uk? I need to take my videos to the next level. Hopefully with a new camera, and maybe a new pc, I will be producing more professional vids, which I'll actually start talking on!
More consumer electronics type reviews - I'm going to start pestering suppliers for review samples - and lots more "how to..." type guides with accompanying video content - especially around the ipod and hiking gps categories. This should see the site break the 500 page target that I set when starting this project way back in the mists of time.... (2006!)
As far as SEO or Site Marketing goes, there's going to be a few channels I'm going to explore. Inbound linking will remain mostly organic with the odd reciprocal to relevant sites. I'm going to do some research on the social book marking sites like digg and delicious to see if I can gain traffic from there too. Video podcasting intrigues me as well. If I can produce good enough videos I'll have a go at that.
As far as monetizing the site, we'll be sticking with Adsense for our contextual Advertising, though I may have a dabble in the new video ads, and perhaps remove some blocks of ads from poor performing pages. I might even get round to using the Competitive Ad Filter to weed out the MFA's and Arbitrage sites that devalue the Adsense ads for visitors. Amazon has really picked up in the last half of the year, and I like the regular payments, ease of use, and trust that people have in the brand, so they will be my affiliate links of choice in 2008.
It's about time I revisited some of my older sites too. I've already added contact forms to my original site in an attempt to attract some fresh question and answer type content. My big project will be to invigorate my old Book Selling Site. It'll be a big challenge; I wrote it before I knew anything about SEO or websites in general. It's got bloated code, duplicate content everywhere, too many affiliate ads, and just rubbish in general. Both these sites just get a trickle of visitors a day, but maybe I can turn them around and get a decent ROI.
So there it is, my review of 07, and what I'm going to do in 08. I hope it helps you in your webmastering tasks in the year ahead too.
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