I have been using WordPress for quite some time now as the centre of my online world. I started out self hosting but after a couple of years of updating and tweaking every weekend, it made more sense for me to just take the platform as a service directly from WordPress themselves. I have not looked back since and these days I can concentrate on just creating content for my blog rather than spending time maintaining the blog server itself. It is truly liberating.
Now to be honest, my blog is not the most popular online destination for most people. On a typical day I can get 10 or 20 real visitors. Some may leave a comment but most wont and it hasn’t brought me internet fame and fortune just yet. But it is a place where I can share stuff. Where I can point people who know me to as a jump point to other destinations. So there are links through to my online photo albums as well as contact details and links to my profile on Twitter and Facebook.
But then it happened.
Each day, those nice people at WordPress pick a handful of new blog postings and feature them on the WordPress front page. This feature is called Freshly Pressed
So last week having just come back from Amsterdam I posted up a handful of photos from my trip that I thought stood out and would be nice to share. They must have been good because they caught the attention of the crew at WordPress who pick the Freshly Pressed sites and I got chosen. I got Freshly Pressed.
So apart from the honour of being picked out from a crowd of 350,000 new posts, I got to discover just how much hard work a busy blog can be.
First of all there is the increase in traffic
Yes that is over 1500 hits per day compared to the usual 10 to 20!
Next are the comments.
My single post got 90 comments in the space of 48 hours. You soon realise that trying to moderate that volume of comments is a full time job.
I also got a lot of spam. Sure the filters caught a lot of it but there was also a lot of shameless self promotion. To be honest, others trying to get their own blog noticed whilst adding a nice comment doesn’t bother me that much but some of it was obvious with comments such as:
Nice photos, now come and visit my blog at http://www.getrichquick.com to learn more
But there were lots and lots of genuinely nice comments as well. I have tried to visit the blogs of all the people who left nice comments and have in turn come across some really great blog posts on all sorts of subjects ranging from a great recipe for mango salsa to great travel blogs and loads of great photography.
So to the WordPress crew, thanks for choosing me. It really was an honour.
For all the 3000+ people who visited over the 48 hours especially those who left comments, thanks also. I am glad my pictures were of interest to you.
And finally, the second your Freshly Pressed link drops back onto the second page, the traffic stops. As you can see on the graph above, the traffic went away as quickly as it came but it really was fun whilst it lasted.