Well this is 4,001 actually but it is another landmark in the ongoing history of Real Football Man, so cause for some celebration I guess and a pat on the back for myself as this is testament to the continued hard work that is put in on a day to day basis in regards to running the site.
What with reaching the 4,000 post milestone it is definitely an ideal time for an update, one that quite simply asks ‘Are we nearly there yet in regards to the new football season?’ – the answer unfortunately to that is no and subsequently my website traffic is pretty bleak at the moment.
Last summer it was all things Euro 2016 that was driving the site along nicely, but I think it is fair to say that there are only so many transfer rumours you can write about without boring not only yourself but the people who visit the website hence why I have condensed the gossip into a twice daily column to cut the wheat from the chaff.
Truth be told though there is little point breaking the same news as what you would find on the BBC Sport website because very rarely can you get the edge, yesterday was a perfect example I broke the Antonio Rudiger signing about 1 hour before it had gone live but it still failed to really make an impact.
So the question is what to do in the meantime I think the answer try to find as much engaging content as possible but I think a lot of websites are biding their time and keeping their powder dry for when the real football (pun intended) starts next month.
This slightly dry spell has made me question whether this is the best time spent, I think it certainly is for the foreseeable future as I’ve worked too hard to throw in the towel plus now that I’m freelance I can’t really afford not to keep working as hard as possible.
But I’m sure there is a disconnect with my site and what goes on with Google these days, I seem to be taking an absolute hammering in the search engine rankings which was never the case before and it is almost diminishing returns now.
Problem is without an Everton sized SEO budget there is every opportunity that the content is getting lost in the wind while only really relying on twitter clicks which seems to now have become my biggest source of traffic to the site.
So the objective is to get more people reading the content on my site and it get back to where it was before, the real litmus test will be when the season starts. Once I factor such things as the match previews and reviews then we should once again see an increase.
This season is all about increased expansion and really putting myself out there, I think enough people have come across my work to see what I am capable of and now it is time for this website to work for me and not the other away around.
Like any labour of love you want to make it the absolute best but the key is it should not be laborious as it is something I love doing and the progress I have made in two years is really solid. But I have a theory about growing a website.
When you’re new it is really easy to rise through the ranks but that can only get you so far, if you want to kick on and reach the upper echelons then it takes not just hard work and time but money also and when I’m pretty much a one man band that is where the plan falls down.
But at the same time there is also reason to be cheerful – for example I’ve made the top 100 of this Football bloggers list, I currently sit at number 69 and when you look at the fact that Goal.com is number 1 then it is a pretty esteemed list to even be a part of.
Like I’ve said many times before I honestly don’t think there is a blog that creates more quality content which is run by just one person, it is either good blogs that are a collective or not so good blogs that are run as a sole enterprise. So I think my blog has a USP in that is all by me, whether that hampers me or not I don’t know.
That said I am always looking for more writers to jump on aboard, I appreciate it is voluntary but as I’ve always said if you want to air your opinions then I will quite happily give you the platform and who knows the more people who want to get on board then the quicker we get to where we want to be.
Where that is exactly I’m not to sure yet, I think a decent line in the sand will be the World Cup next year, at that point I will come to a conclusion whether or not to keep the website running as an ongoing concern or whether or no I use it as a rolling portfolio for other clients and leave it behind.
That decision is 12 months away but in that time I aim to get this blog running at its absolute maximum and the best way to do that is to keep the content coming. I always appreciate the feedback I receive which by and large is always positive and that in itself is always reason to keep writing.
So a big thanks to everyone who does take the time to visit the site and continues to support the project, the best way you can help me is by retweeting and sharing content or even just telling your friends and getting the word out there further
Also if anyone has any back end advice as to how to make this site kick on then contact me here, via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or twitter – dantracey1983
Here’s a shopping list of things I need this season
- Guest Writers – get involved the floor is yours
- Link swaps with other football blogs
- Need to get on News Now or any other large aggregators, failed twice need assistance
- SEO advice/help
- Increased Social Media presence
- Statistics Work through my other website Real Football Data – get in touch if you have any available
If you think you can help in anyway then I’m all ears, anyway thanks for spending the time to read this update/rant. That’s the state of play right now but I’m not going to lie writing the above has made me more excited about the new season. Until then I guess!