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The Wise Dollar Three Month Birthday

The Wise Dollar BrithdayIt’s been three months since I’ve published my first post on the the Wise Dollar. It’s been an interesting time so far. I had no idea what I was getting into from a time perspective, but I’m glad I started and have been able to keep up with my blog. I plan on going forward and keeping The Wise Dollar going indefinitely. I’m learning a lot and I’m meeting (virtually) some great people!

The Wise Dollar Milestones 

12/20/2012 – First Post Published

02/05/2013 – TheFinDependent changes its name to The Wise Dollar. That was probably one of the most stressful things I have done with this blog. I’m not one to ponder over a decision endlessly. Once I found the name Wise Dollar was available, I did my research and plunged into it. No hesitation. I got lucky! I was able to get it done with reasonably few problems. Luckily I did this very early on so I don’t think I was set back very much. My advice to anyone considering starting a blog is to pick your name carefully before you start! If you think you’ve found a great name for your blog, keep looking. Come up with a list of potential domains that are available  and then select from that pool. If I had done that up front I wouldn’t have had to change the name one month into it.  The Challenge – Changing Your Blogs Domain

02/17/2013 – First time Page views goes over 100 for the day, 141 (Thanks to Len Penzo)

3/14/2013 – First Time Page Views go over 100 (115) Organically. I know that this seems like a minor thing to you more experienced bloggers out there but it was a major milestone for me. Especially since they are now exceeding 100 Page views on a regular basis.

 The Wise Dollar Statistics

Number of Posts – 33 posts

Comments – 437

Alexa Rank – 511,212, U.S. 55,854

MozRank – 3

Page Rank – zero      Ooops. Andrew at Listen Money Matters  caught on to this and gave me some advice on what might be causing this. I had paid attention to some of the more obvious SEO techniques (Key word research, Alt tags etc) but totally ignored page speed and html errors. When Andrew gave me a heads up, I saw that Google gave me a 60 on my page load speed. Uggh. I spent a few hours setting up caching, scaling images and a few other tweaks and eventually bought my page load speed up to a score of 90! Yay, it’s been fluctuating between 89 and 90 and I’m fine with that. When I have some time (lol, right) I’ll tweak some of the other things that might help bring it up some more. Andrew also helped me out by sending some php code to get rid of some of the html errors I’m sure was pissing Google off. I think this is starting to pay off as I’ve seen a 50% increase in Google traffic week over week.

Total Page Views – 3238

Total Unique Visitors – 1240

Facebook Likes – 14 I’m Not getting much Facebook love. (I had to threaten my kids to give me a few likes)

Google+ – 5 Even less love here. I’m not sure that anyone actually uses Google Plus though so I’m not too worried.

 Twitter Followers – 95 this one goes up and down. I guess I must piss some people off every once in a while. I can’t possibly put together a list of everyone that has shared my tweets, but for all of you tweeple that did, a Big Thanks!

 Pinterest – A few, I woud check but I can’t remember my password 😮

These are pretty low numbers overall but considering that the Wise Dollar is only three months old, I’m extremely pleased with where they are at! The nice thing is that these numbers are growing exponentially!

Time Spent on The Wise Dollar

Time has been my biggest challenge. Writing quality posts for the Wise Dollar (I hope you think they are) and tweaking the website can take a significant amount of time. Socializing and promoting your blog takes up twice as much time! A little bit about myself, I am ADHD and Obsessive Compulsive. Which means that when I dive into a project, I really DIVE into it (the OC in me) and add it to the 27 other projects I’m already doing (that would be the ADHD in me).

I’m going to have to scale back on a few areas. Quite frankly, I can’t put the time into it that I have been putting into it over the last few months. My wife will tell you this (Ok hun,  you can let go of  my ear now). I’ll think that I’ll aim for two posts a week rather than three. The worst deadline pressure you can ever feel is the self-imposed one! I’ll also be commenting less than I have been in the past.  It’s not that I don’t want too, I really do. There are some fantastic posts out there and I enjoy reading and commenting on them.

On the other hand I’ve found that there are some posts that are, well, pardon me for saying this, but drivel that make my eyes hurt. I won’t be reading those anymore. I can usually tell in the first sentence whether a blog post is “drivel” or “driven”. I’ll go for the driven every time. Some posts are totally off of the PF topic (I’m guilty as that as well) but I love them anyway. The one’s that piss me off, teach me something new or make me laugh hysterically are great and I will read every one of them, sometimes twice!
The Wise Dollar TimerMeet my new best friend; my wife put this on my desk. No explanation was needed. I can set a timer for myself when blogging. The only drawback is the alarm on this thing can wake the dead. If you find me on the ceiling hanging on for dear life it’s because this critter went off and scared me out of my chair.

Shares and Mentions

Thanks to everyone that has shared my blog posts with their readers. Here’s a list of everyone that has shared a WiseDollar link. I hope I didn’t miss anyone and if I did, I’m sorry!

Special Thanks

Here’s a very special thank you to the following folks. All of them have been selfless in offering advice and answering sometimes endless questions from your truly. I probably wouldn’t have gotten as far as I have without their help!

Going Forward

There are a few things I would like to do to the Wise Dollar in the near future. I’ll be changing the sidebars a bit, I think a single sidebar rather than two would look cleaner as well as make more room for the posts. I’m going to put the blog roll on a single page. I also be doing a few minor tweaks to keep it fresh and clean looking. Let me know what you think would improve The Wise Dollar, I value your opinion and advice!

On A personal Note:

My job search continues and I’ve run into a very promising opportunity. Several co-workers from a prior job are in a Company that all of them love. Interestingly enough, that company is a black hole for employees (in a good way). People go there and never leave or get laid off! They happen to have a position in North Carolina open and I fit that position like a glove. My old co-workers are shaking the tower and telling management that they absolutely would be missing a great hire if they didn’t bring me in. I spoke to the hiring manager Friday and they have set up a “Gang” phone interview for Monday.  Their Fiscal Year end on March 31st and they want to fill this position before their FY ends. So the odds are looking pretty good that I’ll have a job offer on the table by the end of next week. Wish me luck!

 

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John Schmoll is a Dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry. He's passionate about helping people learn from his mistakes so that they can live lives free from the shackles of debt and empowered to make their money work for them. You can check out his other sites: Frugal Rules, for ways to improve your financial literacy; and Sprout Wealth for tips on different ways to make more money. John has been featured on Forbes, Lifehacker, Yahoo Finance and US News & World Report and more. If you're wanting to grow your blog, check out my blog coaching services to see how I can help you take your site to the next level.

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33 comments

  1. Hi Jose,
    For the short amount of time you have been online I think you are doing great. I just started about 1 1/2 months ago myself and seeing some progress but it is very time consuming. Especially with working full time, having a 2 1/2 – 3 hour commute everyday, plus going for my masters degree, time is very minimal. Keep up the good work. You can add this to your comment count, plus a twitter share and follower. 🙂

    • Thanks Alan, I appreciate the kind words! Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help. One thing I quickly found out is that the blogger community is your best resource for advice and help!

  2. Wow, I don’t think I realized you had been around for only three months. I think you’re doing great, so keep up the good work! I can totally relate, as I am sure many of us can, that time is a major issue when it comes to blogging. I would agree that the self-imposed deadline is the worst to have and I am guilty of that all the time…just ask my wife. 😉 Anyway, keep up the great work Jose and good luck on the job front – that sounds like a great opportunity!

    • Thanks John! Yeah, three months. I’m surprised I made it this far. There were times when I just felt like throwing my hands in the air and saying the hell with it but insanity returned 🙂 and I have kept plugging away at it!

  3. Happy three months!

    Pretty sure it’s like 1.5 in blog years.

  4. Happy 3 months Jose!!! Keep up the good work and if you want more FB likes Network on FB… pop over and say hi!! My fans love to get to know other Bloggers I hang out with!! I’ll come check out your FB page!! Cheers mate!! Mr.CBB

  5. Happy blogiversary, Jose, and I’m SO glad you have a great lead on a job!!! BTW, I am LOVING your blog – the content is great and always interesting.

    • Thanks Laurie! Check your email, I sent you some info on NC and TN. If Nascar is important, then Charlotte is the place to be! There seems to be more drag racing activities and track further east where I live. On a really bright note any of the major centers in NC are only 20-30 mintes away from rural farming country. So if you work for a large downtown corporation, you can commute from a farm pretty easily!

  6. Congrats, Jose! I can’t believe you’ve accomplished so much in just 3 months! Wow. Great job! I’ve been blogging for about 3 1/2 years and it’s become quite a habit! Wishing you continuing success!

    • Thank You Maggie, and thanks for stopping by and commenting, I really appreciate it! It is a habit, my wife say’s it’s an addiction and I have a hard time refuting that. 3 1/2 years is a long time to be blogging, I think you have a great site!

  7. Congrats on making it 3 months. It takes a lot of dedication to keep a blog like this going. I know first hand I’ve been doing it since 2008. That’s probably one of the big reasons I only post 3 times a week. Anyways you have a good start going, when I first got started I didn’t get anywhere near the amount of comments you were getting. Of course I didn’t have any idea what I was doing back then either.

    • Thanks Chris! Wow, five year! That is a long time, you are definitely dedicated. Only three times a week! I have a hard time trying to do three posts a week, which is why I’m shooting for two. Of course if I can squeeze three or four out I will (as long as they are quality). Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Congrats on so much progress in just 3 months. I think for the first 3 months of my blog, no one even knew I existed. You’re on the right track.

  9. Congrats Jose! Impressive what you have done in such a short amount of time!

  10. Congratulations, and best of luck! Sounds like you have a great attitude going forward.

  11. Jose, congrats on 3 months, you have done wonderful in such a short time, look forward to the next 3.

  12. Happy blogoversary! that is awesome, you have achieved a lot in such a short time. Does that timer tick? it would drive me crazy. Fingers crossed for the job and thank you so much for the mention!

    • Thanks Pauline! Luckily the timer does not tick, which makes the ringing that much more obnoxious when it goes off. I still halfway jump off the chair when it goes BRRRIINNNNNGGGG and I’m not a jumpy person! I went trough a tough interview session on the phone today with two high level engineers and the Director. I made it past that and have a followup interview Wednesday! Wish me luck!

  13. Congrats on 3 months. I really enjoy your content and look forward to more of it. I think the longer you blog, the easier it gets or maybe you just get better at time management? There are so many things I still need to learn, but there is time and this is honestly just a hobby at this point. I have to keep reminding myself of that sometimes. I’m really happy to hear about your potential job. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it works out like you hope.

    • I hope so! I think I tend to over-complicate things sometimes (it’s the Engineer in me). the raised bed post took hours of work (the post, not the beds :D). lots of pictures, duplicating and re-sizing them. I also tend to edit my posts too many times. Maybe that’s a good thing? But I do hope it gets easier!

  14. Jose-

    I don’t know what a 3 month birthday is, but congrats! You’ve accomplished a lot over the short period. Best of luck going forward. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.

  15. You’re doing a great job Jose. I wish you luck with your next 6 months, and can’t wait to read what you have to say.
    Updating sidebars is something I’ve been horrible with lately. I mean to do it, but they keep slipping my mind.
    Good Luck!

    • Thanks Justin! It is just me or is it a blogger affliction? I am never quite happy with what my sidebars look like and seem to be constantly fidgeting with them. Maybe they should call them fidgets instead of widgets?

  16. I feel bad Jose for not getting to your celebration post sooner. I apologize. I think you are doing very well for such a young blog. I am only a few months ahead of you and it is a long journey. There are so many aspects to blogging that many don’t realize. Keep up the great work Jose!

    • No apologies neccesary! I completely understand. As teh list of blogs I follow grows, so does the lag time in being able to keep up with all the new posts! Thanks!

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