May Saturday’s post rest in peace!
After Saturday’s rant (on my birthday, no less!) I decided that some things need to change around here. That post should have never been posted, so I killed it! One commenter suggested that my posts are too long. Agreed… especially that last one… although sometimes it’s hard get a train of thought stopped in a short distance… but I will try… or at least break them up into smaller bites.
More “conductors” would be nice! (That means you!) The job doesn’t pay much, but you always gain more valuable knowledge when you participate!
I realize that some people are like audiophiles or videophiles, that expect every piece of information they read to be like John Steinbeck or Kurt Vonnegut. Sorry, but I’m not them. The closest I can get is that Ernie Pyle was a cousin through marriage, and I have to say I haven’t even read his books!
Not that I can’t learn to be a great writer with enough study, or enough thought put into it, but I’m me, and I’m retired. Everything I said about me on the ebook sign up page is true, and I don’t hide it. I’ve got more than 40 years of experience at a lot of different things behind me, but one thing I have learned is that I can’t please everyone! I am who I am, and I’m not going to try to be something I’m not! Sometimes I get cantankerous around certain people, but I figure they made me the way I am, so if they can’t deal with it, it’s their problem, not mine! I get along fine with myself… most of the time.
About (yuk!) “sales in general”…
In regard to sales in general, I am going to say what I have to say today, and then I am going to shut up about it! Of course, the conversation below is a part of all this.
To try to gain more social traffic, I am going to find the plug-in that adds the proper social sharing buttons. I should have done that long ago, but as I said, this is not my only web site, blog or project, and the money commands where I spend my time.
No links???? What???
The other commenter said the reason I’m not selling things is because I don’t have the product links on this blog. He, for example, went around the link on the front page of my main site and signed up for Workamper News because I didn’t have a link to it on this blog that was convenient, even though one click to the main site would have made the link available.
I can lead a horse to a water trough, but if he chooses to drink out of a puddle, then maybe it’s because the water in the trough tastes worse than the puddle! Time to investigate why!
Problem solved. You’ll notice there are now links to “some” of my main recommended sources in the right margin. I find it hard to believe that some wouldn’t be interested in travel software, so maybe there wasn’t enough information on it. The new longer banner expains more about it, so we’ll see if that helps. And I shouldn’t have to explain it, but for all the newbies out there, you actually have to click on a picture or link to check out the product! (After all, we’re eliminating excuses here!)
Jason Odom’s Vanabode book on how to travel on $20 a day is also a great resource for anyone wanting to use an “unmodified” full size van for traveling and still have basic creature comforts. Many of his ideas are the same as mine, but he also has some different points of view on some things that you should check out.
I also made the link to the main page of my site in bold, so that it stands out more, since it appears that many of you are not going there to see what else I have. What I show here on this blog, in both information and products, is a drop in the bucket compared to what I have available on the main site.
The main site is NOT just about minivans, and I realize that not everyone is interested in that. Most of my notifications there have been about the minivan, because you are all subscribers to the ebook. I am not in the habit of “pitching” to people in every email I send out, because I don’t like it when other people do it to me. If the site isn’t drawing them in to buy the products, then maybe I need to revamp the site to attract buyers instead of readers. After all, there are “shopper” keywords, and there are “buyer” keywords, and I’m probably not using enough of the latter.
Right now the site is focusing on my first ebook offering (of I hope, many on many other topics). The first book just happens to be about minivans. The other ebooks will be more general in travel topics. The main site is actually about literally everything that I can think of having to do with RV’ing and camping, the same as this blog is. There are literally hundreds of articles and product recommendations available there for all kinds of RV’ers and campers, and I will be adding more as I have time. Most of them are there to either save you money or keep you safe, which is the main topic of the site. Anything else is coincidental.
If you want information and recommendations on particular products having to do with this topic, then you need to go to the main site pages where I have that information. It’s NOT here on this blog! I don’t have room for all of them. The main site currently has about 115 specialized pages on it, and they are all completely different than what is here. Hopefully, you won’t have any trouble finding it now.
I know some of you will have an issue with this (more advertising), but I have my SkimWords set to medium density right now, which isn’t producing the numbers I want to see, so this afternoon I am going to reset it to the highest setting to see what happens. If I don’t like the amount of “blue words” I see, I’ll set it back. Keep in mind, I don’t have control over where SkimWords chooses to send those links, unless I program the link first, so that will also be a determination as to how I set them.
SkimWords are a little like Adsense, in that they pick random vendors in their database based on the keywords of the site, so that can also mean that they might bring up a competitor’s products. But since my main products (my books) are unique, and everything else is through affiliate links, I’m not concerned about that.
Some people have said they don’t like being “sold to” or seeing advertising all the time, but they wouldn’t have ANY man-made item within their field of vision if someone at some point hadn’t sold it first. And some information isn’t going to do you any good without the resources to make use of it, so buy from whomever gives you good information, whether it’s me or some other blogger trying to make a buck to cover his expenses of you reading his information! It’s a fair trade!
As I said Saturday, I am not doing all this out of the kindness of my heart. If I provide quality information in a format you like, then it’s only fair that you show your appreciation by at least checking out some of the products I suggest. I tend to walk away from conversations where I am ignored, and web work is no different. If no one is paying any attention to what I put out there, then I can save my time talking about it, delete this blog, and just use SEO to get actual interested buyers to my sales pages. That has always worked in the past.
Not that I am trying to get “everyone’s” business. If you are on some other traveler’s blog and he provided you with useful information… and he has links… USE them! We’re running “stores” here, with the object being to make money! And just like stores, if we can’t afford to keep the operation going, it will close! I can’t click on my own links to get discounts, so I also have occasion to buy from other bloggers when I need something. That’s the way world trade works.
And with links to department stores, it isn’t just RV and camping products I buy or sell there! I have sold everything from “laundry sandals” to DVD’s to ebooks, and even kids toys… all from a click on a tool product! Surely you have all bought something at a local store within the last month, that you could have just as well bought from one of your fellow bloggers. It doesn’t matter what’s “shown” on an Amazon banner, you can click on it and go search for whatever it is that you DO want! I just happened to pick the Kindle product because it’s a very hot product for RV’ers and campers, as well as people staying at home! If you want something else, search for it after clicking on the banner!
A local store doesn’t provide you with good information! They don’t give you the best price on what you buy! They don’t tell you what competitors offer the product for! They don’t offer to sell to you in both new or used items! They don’t give you reviews of the products they sell! And then to top it off, they want to charge you sales tax (in most states)! Help those who help you online!
Even after Saturday’s rant, which I was sure would stir up a fire-storm of controversy, only two people have commented so far, and another one unsubscribed. So if people won’t tell me what they want when I ask a direct question (or several questions) then I have to go with the numbers and stats. That is the way that people on the web cast their secret ballots to determine what goes on there. Every action… a visit, a click, a sale… creates a reaction in an analytics program. That is their silent and anonymous voice that guides the actions of the web master!
I was just informed this last week that you can now purchase online from Wal Mart and use CASH to pick up your item at whatever local store you choose! So for those that have an aversion to buying online with a credit card, now you have no excuse not to buy online!
In case you didn’t realize it, no Wal Mart store EVER carries everything that the corporation has available. And besides the stores carrying regional products (products that southerners buy that northerners don’t, and vice versa), they also offer special deals online for certain products that NO store carries! That’s how I got this (normally) $450 laptop that I’m using for about $300.
And by the way, that logo over there in the right column is a link! Sorry, I won’t mention it again!
Out and about…
Last week we decided to take Angel for a walk at a local city park, which also has a small riverside campground adjacent to it. I made sure to take my camera (actually my cell phone, which has a very good camera on it), so I will be posting those pictures soon. I am going to make a point of making a weekly excursion to someplace of interest in the area until such time as we can get out and travel more. I know many of you have been wanting more pictures, so I am going to do my best to make that happen, and again, it’s not all about the minivan project.
We are in a “rural vacation area” here, with being in the first planned retirement area in the country. Although we are at least 40 miles from the nearest “sizable” city, we have 15,000 acres, seven man-made lakes, two golf courses, two large community centers, and loads of activities in the area.
But as with most rural areas, I am seeing a definite lack of information and pictures about it on the web. Even the city site itself has gone downhill since the city took it over, and now it’s all about city government and nothing to do with providing useful information to the tourist trade that keeps this area alive. Maybe I can change that… and maybe make a few bucks for my effort.
So that people can find the post topics of interest to them, I have gone back and categorized all the previous posts, and those categories will be in the right hand column. All new posts will be categorized, and if new topics come up, I will add more categories.
That’s all I have for today. Now that there are links to satisfy some people, I’m sure there will be others who complain. That’s why the numbers tell the true story. But after this, I will say no more about it.
As always, let me know how I’m doing… all 5% (or less) of you out there… although the rest are welcome to join the conversation any time! I grew up on a farm, and people there actually think you’re a little crazy when you do nothing but talk to fence posts!
To those who have made an attempt to guide me with good advice, I thank you wholeheartedly, and I hope you will stick around to give me more!
So where are the rest of you?