No, I haven't been robbed and I didn't lose anything.
I wanted to discuss the changes that happened with Money Beagle over the past few months. Specifically, I'll center it around the things that are missing from what was once there, and I'll discuss a little bit more:
- The old format – I was on a domain using WordPress and hosted at Dreamhost. When Dreamhost wanted to extend my rates at about 500% of the cost of the first year, I looked at what I had made in revenue (not much) against the annual cost (a lot more than I was bringing in). I also looked at how much I was actually using the things that DreamHost offered (not many) and how much I projected my revenue growth over the next year (probably not much). I decided I wanted to move my blog to a free site, and felt that Blogger was just fine for the amount of posting and the features I used. I probably should have started with a free site, but that's a lesson learned.
- Daily posts – I used to have a rule of trying to do a daily post. I would find myself not enjoying blogging. Here's the thing. I love blogging about certain things, but I realized that inspiration isn't probably going to hit me every day. So, I was doing filler and such that I really wasn't enjoying. I guess I'd rather write a few posts that I really like per month versus writing 20 or 30 a month with only a few that I'm proud of. Most likely, that showed through and may have had something to do with the fact that I didn't get a lot of great hits from my round-ups or carnivals. I promise now, though, I'm going to be more writing about things that I care about and am excited to write about. I may not write often, but when I do, hopefully it's more insightful than what I had been doing.
- Blogroll – I had a pretty big blogroll going. I will actually add that back as I do read a lot of PF blogs every day. I will most likely start from scratch. Now that I'm writing more personal stuff and writing more for me, I will be adding blogs that relate to that. Blogs that focus so much on subscriber traffic that they feel the need to post updates about it constantly (sorry, The Simple Dollar) won't be added, but my guess is that they won't miss my paltry little link anyways. Also, blogs that talk about your own experiences, those will be my blogroll. So, if you talk about your 401(k) or about your frugality turning to debt reduction, that's what I want to see! If you are regurgitating the same '10 reasons why you should open a 401(k)' or '25 things to cut back on to save money', eh I've read it before and that's not what I want to send my (few) readers to because let's face it, everybody else already links to those blogs as it is.
- Comments – I'm afraid I couldn't bring the comments from my DreamHost blog with me. So while I brought over most of the articles (minus round-ups), I lost all of the great comments. But I still have them in my heart, I promise! 🙂
- Twitter – Again, I did the Twitter thing because it seemed that was what everybody was doing and thought it'd be a great way to direct readers to my blog. And I thought it was the most useless thing I've ever done. I just didn't get it, and I'm sure it had to do with the fact that I didn't have the motivation to invest hours and hours into Twittering, which is I'm sure how many have actually gotten it to work. I have Facebook for my friends and family. I have this blog for my personal finance stories. Twitter just didn't have a good place that I felt was worth the time, so I tried it and got rid of it.
I guess what it boils down to is that I'm going for quality, not quantity. I also wanted to look at my balance. I realized, especially after Baby Beagle came along, that I didn't want to spend hours per week Twittering and carnival hosting and carnival participating and commenting on 500 other blog posts to build up my traffic by a few people here and there so that I could enthusiastically report that I hit a thousand subscribers. Some can do that and are great it, and I say fantastic. But it just wasn't me.
I want to keep blogging, I love blogging, but I realized that I wanted to set realistic expectations so that I can get the most out of blogging and actually enjoy it like I know I can. I can't promise that Money Beagle the most high quality personal finance out there. In fact, I'm pretty sure it won't be. But, I can promise I'll be writing stuff that I believe in, that affects and happens to me personally, and I promise that when I write, from now on, there's no fluff.
I hope you stick with me and my little blog as I re-discover my place in the blog sphere.