(November 28, 2005)
Many people are apologetic about checking Sitemeter and Technorati, as if that was something to be revealing of vanity and to be embarassed about. But those two are essential tools in the conversation.
You have to be pretty good, big, and popular to have more than 1% of visitors actually leave a comment. Don’t expect most of the responses to your posts to occur on your blog’s comments threads. I feel that many newbies think this and give up blogging way too early in the game, in dissappointment when nobody leaves any comments.
Most of the conversation in the blogosphere is not within a blog (post-to-comments) but between blogs (post-to-post, or rather blog-to-blog-to-blog-to-blog…).
Without Sitemeter and Technorati you are standing on the soapbox and yelling into the wilderness. Your blog is your mouth. Sitemeter and Technorati are your ears – without them you cannot hear the responses.
Perhaps you want a monologue. But if you don’t, if you actually want feedback, it is these two tools that will provide it to you. So don’t be ashamed to use them.
And also leave your Sitemeter visible to visitors as that encourages meta-conversations and quicker inclusion of newcomers into your blogging community. When seeing a blog for the first time, I often check the sitemeter referrals (if possible) to see who links to this person, to what individual posts, and why. It quickly gives me the idea what sub-blogosphere that blog belongs to and if I am going to be interested in following that blog in the future (check my blogroll – I added a few new ones lately)