It is such a pain being a ‘noobe’ – any place, any where
We are dazzled, momentarily, when we arrive. Woot! We are here. We start to build relationships; we start to climb our way up the pecking order; and reality sets in. We are jostled by every one we pass, and we shove back or skip past, depending on our taste for conflict or the weapons at our disposal.
The rank structure of the bloggersphere
In the blogging world, the first disillusionment of the noobe blogger comes when we understand that there are already kids in charge of the block. They are called the “A list” bloggers. By dint of being around longer, A-list bloggers command the playground. One word from them and we are made!
We cluster around the A-listers hoping to be mistaken for the in-crowd. We tweet them, @ClayShirky for example, hoping that our friends think we actually know them.
And the A-listers ignore us, just as the cool kids ignored us all those years ago at school. Oddly, the more we fawn, the easier it is for them to ignore us. You’d think we might have learned something from school.
The long road to a stronger blog ranking
In the blogging world, longevity really matters. A stopped stone gathers moss, readership and Google page rank. Life in the blogosphere is as simple as that.
We newcomers have a long journey from 4 page hits to 40 to 400 to 4000, from the very occasional comment to comments daily, from occasional readers to regular readers.
On the journey, we worry. Is my writing too light? Is it too heavy? Should I be more provocative or less? Should I used better keywords, or not?
Rich information from Alexa Rankings
I use Alexa Rankings every few weeks to give me a sense of how I am doing. And then I do a comparison with the big old established sites!
Pointers from Alexa Rankings
I can stop worrying that my writing is too inaccessible. People spend more than 10 minutes on my site. Not an easy read – sure – but people are reading.
My bounce rate is a lowish 30%. Many A-listers have bounce rates of 70%.
And my visitors look at an average of 8 pages. That’s very high. (Thank you!).
Moreover, as these are averages, the people who stay are staying for a long time. (A double thank you!)
Rich information helps us understand our role in our new playground
These figures are much better than most A-listers. That gives me heart that I am doing something right. I wish I had more comments though! It would be nice to be able to shape the blog around topics and styles that you find interesting.
But I thank you anyway! More people are coming and my site continues to climb the rankings at home and abroad. Alexa kindly gives me the details and I can track my progress against my goals, which includes getting progressively more traffic from the UK
I also get some idea of what to improve. I don’t get a lot of traffic from search, for example. I could obviously do a bit of SEO!
If you are a ‘noobe’, Alexa Rankings are a good monthly stop. The rich information provides the perspective every noobe needs to understand the rules and to break away from the crude rankings and pecking orders that rule all playgrounds!
Break the tyranny of the pecking order
Whenever we are new, somewhere in some place, we need to look for the equivalent of Alexa Rankings to escape the tyranny of crude pecking orders. Look! Find! Ask a richer set of questions than whether the A-listers know us.
Get oriented! Sanity for we noobes!