I recently learned the true definition of the word “guru.” It means to lift someone up through knowledge and wisdom. It means to teach, to impart wisdom, “to dispel the darkness of ignorance” so that those who go after you will be better for it.
Too often the label is used with arrogance. It doesn’t mean to lord over others as an expert. A true guru probably wouldn’t call themselves a guru. Others would honor them with the title.
After years of being called a guru in WordPress, blogging, and multimedia web publishing and being embarrassed by it, I realized there was more to being a guru than a line on a promotional ad. It’s time to reconsider such self-proclamations without anything to show for it. It’s time to call myself on the carpet to prove my worth, and for others to step up to the plate and prove it themselves.
Here is the article series so far which focuses on proving your personal expertise and experience to back up what you blog about. I just published the last article which includes research on what elements of a website design and content inspire trust in their readers.
Future articles will focus on specific design and content elements with recommendations on WordPress Theme and Plugins to help “prove it” on WordPress sites. I’ll be writing about how to prove it through accuracy in writing, publishing, and interaction with readers, and how to measure the proof of your success through analytics and feedback. I’ll add more articles to this post as the series continues throughout the year.
There 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.
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.