As SEO consultants, ninjas, geeks, gurus, hackers or whatever other stupid word we’re putting on our email signatures this week, it seems like our biggest challenges aren’t getting the results we promise for our clients. For me, and pretty much everyone else I’ve worked with, it seems like the biggest issue is following our own advice for our own sites.
Whether we’re talking about our personal blogs or our company sites, they’re always the places that we cut corners. Unless I’m talking about content, responsive design (although that’s down to the eleven40 Theme – aff) or site architecture, I wouldn’t use this site as an example for anything client-related which, the more I think about it, is strange.
I’d gladly put the backlink profiles of any of my clients in front of Matt Cutts and any of his webspam team because I know they wouldn’t find anything to complain about, but when it comes to this site, not so much. Aside from a couple of decent guest blog posts, I’ve really done very little “real” work on building links for it. I just don’t have the time. Indeed, this site’s mostly been used for testing in the past. Now, most of my readership comes through social media. I like to think that it’s mostly down to the content – it’s certainly not down to my link building for this site.
Generally, I look at some of the “industry superstars” with their massive Twitter followings, their huge Feedburner numbers and such forth and I wonder how they have the time to either A) have a life or B) do any actual work. It seems that a lot of them either spend all day reading blog posts and rewriting them or having chats on social media. I can’t do that – I have a pretty busy home life and I’m way too busy with actual work to spend my whole day blogging or building my personal brand on Twitter. That’s probably why I developed my method for making social media more productive.
Productivity-related rants aside, I recognise that, for my own sanity, I need to up my game with this site, which is why, from now on, I’m going to make a concerted effort to practice what I preach here.
I don’t think the content here is a problem (although I could probably stand to write shorter posts). I write well, I provide actionable ideas rather than theory and I do my best to talk you through how to make those ideas happen. My plan involves making these ideas happen for myself:
I’m going to be more active on Quora. It’s a goldmine of content ideas and it’s also a really good way to get myself out there without taking up too much time. It’s also quite handy that some links are do-follow and the Android app’s quite nice to use as well.
I’m going to do some actual link building for this site. There won’t be much, but there will be some. I’ll be doing guest posts more regularly (if anyone wants one, give me a shout), there will be some outreach too. Basically, I’ll be doing what I do all day at work for my own site.
I’m planning to redirect the domain in the not-too-distant future. I’m bored with this domain name, it’s trickier than it should be for people to remember and it’s just not really right for the site in the way it is now. I’m going to redirect it over to ben-johnston.co.uk in the next week or two when I get the time.
Finally, I’m going to be putting together a new site. It’s not ready to go yet, so I won’t tell you what it is, but it’s a project I’m really rather excited about and, hopefully, other people will be too.
So there you have it. The site’s just a hobby, it’s going to be staying as a hobby, but for my own sanity, I’m going to be putting a bit more thought and work into it over the next few months. Stick around; it’s going to be a fun ride.