What You Must Know About Writing on the Web


While that number might mean different things to you, like your birthday, an anniversary, graduation year, part of a lottery number – to me it represents a quota.

Several years ago, a fan counted up all the articles I wrote every year and came up with an estimate of 1,975 articles published annually across multiple sites.

I was stunned. No, staggered. I now had a number. I didn’t know what to do with it. It freaked me out. That’s 164 articles a month. Thirty-eight articles a week. Five and a half a day. That’s a lot.

Don’t even ask to add up the word count. I couldn’t. Yet, the same person estimated that I wrote 2,370,000 words annually.

It took a long time for me to come to grips with that number. I worried when I became smarter with my time and dropped some of the online columns and magazines to concentrate on more influential sites. What if I couldn’t keep up with the numbers?

After a while I gave up and realized it was just a number. Like a random phone number or birth date. Another number not to worry about. Much.

Along the way to generating all those words every year for many years on end, I learned a few things worth sharing. Continue reading

Analytics: Tracking the Competition

Web Analytics WordleThere are many ways to track the competition, from reading newspapers and magazines to checking them out on Alexa or other web stats and analytics sites.

Here are some articles referencing how to track the competition in a variety of ways including traditional media, social media, analytics, and legal spying.

Comparing your website to others means tracking their activity compared to yours. This might involve using an online tool that compares your site to theirs, or by checking each site individually and comparing notes. Some of the following will compare one site to another testing for a variety of data such as PageRank, keywords, traffic, and incoming links. Others will focus on a single aspect such as keywords or unique visitors. Use a variety of them to get an overall perspective on how your site compares to others.

Note: Google removed their PageRank data from the public a couple years ago. Online tools based upon Google’s PageRank data may no longer work or be supported. Please let me know if any of these are no longer active.

Comparison Testing Tools

Link Checking: Backlinks and Outgoing Links

Keyword Research and Analysis

Specific SEO Testing Tools

The following are SEO and analytics testing tools that cover specific types of testing. For example, BuiltWith tests the site and reports back with information on how the site was build, the publishing platform, supporting technologies, and other information about how the site was built.

Reference Articles

The following are articles and sites specializing in analytics, SEO, and optimization.