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Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Official Travel Notes Blog

I don't know why I didn't mention MyBlogLog earlier; when I was talking about a Community of Bloggers.

I guess, because it wasn't a 'community of bloggers' back then.

I initially joined MyBlogLog, in the early Spring of last year, because I liked the idea of their tracking statistics; showing which links were getting clicked on the most.

I paid for the Pro version and spent way too much time, during the summer (when the code was on enough pages), analysing what was proving popular on the TravelNotes website and which links were 'not working'. How variations of link placements might change where the clicks go.

MyBlogLog was mostly used by bloggers then, for tracking their blog logs, but there was nothing to say that you couldn't use the statistics on a 'normal' website. Well, we had the travel articles.

I also added a seperate tracker to our reservations site, to see which hotel links were popular, which destinations were being chosen the most, and why certain hotels were being looked at with great interest but not getting clicked through to the booking stage.

I'll look at anything to try and make the visitor experience better and I believe the MyBlogLog statistics helped, to some extent.

Then I didn't bother to look into the statistics for ages and continued with the badly-needed website upgrades.

Until I logged on some time in October and found out that I was suddenly part of a community and I actually had some 'community members'.

Intrigued, I clicked on the the small faces of people who were in 'my community' and clicked on some of the faces of people in theirs; reading some of the blogs that looked interesting and making a mental note to go back and add some of them to the TravelNotes website, when we finally found the time to add a Travel Blogs section.

The next time I logged in, I saw that some of the people whose blogs I had read, came to my profile page to see what I was about; apparently the widgets on their blogs still had my face on them.

That was the signal to add the Travel Notes Blog to my profile, even though it's not the most active blog around, for the bloggers who were perhaps 'looking for a blog'.

Maybe I'll get around to adding the widget too, so that you can see their smiling faces peering back at you.

My only concern is that with Yahoo's involvement and the announcement that MyBlogLog will change to Yahoo ids, for log-in purposes, is that things don't go downhill like WebRing did; a good community that fell flat with Yahoo's bland implementation of an automated navigation code (or the GeoCities community feel, way back when).

I just hope that MyBlogLog survives the Big Brother input and the small-town community spirit grows stronger, not bolder - when the Yahoo-infested spammers arrive. One thing I have noticed, is that you now can remove some of those faces from your widget; if the undesirables do appear, with their 'face-link' spam.

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