Behind the Scenes: August 2016

Not going to sugar coat this: August sucked when it came to developing the blog. Seriously, it’s the last week of August and this is the first time I was able to do any writing about any progress on my learning curve. My little family moved to a closer location to my husband’s workplace. Since I’m currently not traditionally employed by a business, I had no argument against the move (especially since I wasn’t happy with our previous home anyway). He hasn’t asked me to return to work even though I have offered. However, the move took longer than anticipated, so I kept the blog on the back burner. I almost feel as if I nearly ended this dream of a professional blog before making my posts public.

Completed Tasks

 

On a positive note, I was able to take full use of my free trial month on Amazon Kindle Unlimited. I read probably 25 e-books on how to improve travel writing, running a blog, and improving my photography skills. There was a lot of crap to wade through that was almost laughable.

I will say, as far as the photography books went, one must take into account how dry and technical of a topic that is. I will say that Mastering Digital Photography by Jason Youn was the only one who seemed genuinely interested in his topic. He actually wrote as if you were having a conversation with him. For me, his book can be read in small hour-long doses, a far cry from ALL the other books on the subject of photography that I came across. Even if you don’t have Kindle Unlimited, you can purchase it for less than $5 right now if this is something you think would help you as well.

As of today, I managed to work on the inner blog workings. For the blogger vets, this will seem child’s play and eyes will roll but I don’t care. I figured out how to get my posts on specific pages. Hint: you don’t create individual pages. How crazy, right? Plus, those posts will still go to my home page but if someone were looking specifically for a post that featured a place in Europe or the USA, they could click on those top header tabs. Saved me so much trouble and migraines. I’m thinking I may actually make this work.

I also ended up changing to a new theme from one that I really did love. I published two Private posts and when you click on them, the text is only on one-half of the page. There’s not even a Sidebar to make this happen! This is why you do tests and boring junk before you launch your blog, kids. I was so sad to have to change it but I truly hate that kind of blog setup… That might explain why I don’t look at too many individual Tumblr blogs.

Clearly, my long list of To-Do’s from July is still long (outside of reading) so that’s what I’ll be focusing on in the last 5 days of August and throughout September. No big launch for September is expected. I really have to be more prominent on social media now that things have calmed down finally. Can’t begin a basic readership if I don’t make positive relationships with other people who love to travel.

Looking forward to what I can accomplish in September!

Here we go!

Update: August 27, 2016

I think it is worth noting that I’ve started reading Obstacle.co and his articles really speak to me. I’m not going to lie, he hooked me into his website through Pinterest with the $500K Challenge article and I signed up for the “Cultivate Your Tribe” 5-day email course. After reading 2 articles on Obstacle, I had already signed up to subscribe to their emails. He and his team write quality content that is out to actually help people with creating their own websites without spending $100s of dollars every stinking time you need to understand something. I’m sure plenty of y’all know some websites like that. They do sell stuff but haven’t been overly sale-pitchy about it, which has helped me to keep coming back to them. They have created trust with me and I may actually buy one of their/his courses later. There is one I’m looking at but I don’t quite have the extra money for it just now. So we’ll see. And of course, if I do finally buy the course and complete it, it will make it into the BTS pages. The review of their course, not their hard work, by the way.

Revisited the July BTS post and of course saw “Understand New Era SEO better” and really didn’t want to even start looking at it. As I rarely back down from a challenge that is to my overall benefit, I began with baby steps into SEO articles. I’m trying to focus on articles from this year so that I’ll have a better chance at getting the most current and beneficial information. Yay for tech-related articles with date stamps!

I did find out that I actually am making a mistake (surprise, surprise) with my photos I upload and use. Thank you, Uncork Your Dork! (Love the logo by the way!) Good thing I haven’t uploaded every stinking photo for every article I’ve written yet! You definitely want to check out the link because she explains it well for N00bs like me. I haven’t done any Alt Text to the photos and I had a feeling that it was important but just kind of said, “whatever.” BUT, guess who’ll be correcting her mistakes this week? Yep – me.

I think I’ve been taking action on making sure my articles’ URLs are named with text and not just a string of numbers, but I’ll be double checking that. I mean, I’ve only got 5 articles including the 2 BTS monthly posts, so now is the time to get on top of it.

Excuse the language, but I’m still reading Uncork Your Dork’s SEO article. Holy shit. Seriously, I’ve got some work to do. New articles (outside of BTS) are officially on the back burner until I get this under control. Mother. Effer.

I’ll be fine and if you’re in Pre-launch Mode like I am, you’ll be fine too. We’ll both just have to hunker down and get this hot mess under control. Okay, go make yourself a cup of strong coffee or caffeinated tea. We’re going to be doing this for while. I think I’ll be going through Terra Dawn’s article on Uncork Your Dork and go through #1 through #8 and then work on her update to the article and review my site to see what else I can improve upon.

Update: August 30, 2016

I have updated a couple of photos to include descriptions and alt-text to help with my SEO stuff. Not done yet, however.

I finally created a Facebook profile and cover photo for Wanderlust Conqueror’s social page. It may get changed later because they sort of don’t flow together but I needed to start somewhere. And they’re both reasonable photos.

I did try to also link my Instagram page to the WC Facebook page but I kept getting an error. Ugh. Will try again later. It’s not a huge concern at the moment since this website has not been launched yet.

I also keep forgetting to look into it but need to figure out how to add a Subscribe Here button or sticky or whatever to get my email list up and rolling. That’s a big deal for me and I just keep forgetting to work on that.

Search Engine Optimization of the website itself is going to be the current top priority of the inner workings of my site. Once I start my actual articles back up, I’ll be creating quality content first and foremost for each post and still keep SEO a priority within each of those. I’ll be fine-tuning it to make it be read naturally while still getting Google Crawl Bots to acknowledge my stuff as worthy of bumping up in the ranks with the bazillion other links out there. Between Uncork Your Dork and Obstacle, I’m feeling better about how to make it work to my advantage. When I first started, I was so overwhelmed but it’s starting to “click” for me (and hopefully lead to clicks for me)!

Investments in Wanderlust Conqueror

  • “Travel Photography: The Essential Guide” with Jad Davenport on Craftsy – $20
    • I caught a new membership promo that I could buy a video class for $20 and the guy works with National Geographic so that was enough cred for me. Haven’t had time to watch it but it’s mine forever to watch on my time schedule.
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