Entries Tagged 'Housekeeping, announcements etc' ↓
February 7th, 2011 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
Now there are nearly 200 articles on here about traditional shaving it represents a considerable body of work. Easily as much as a book would contain. If you use the search box on the right you can reference all this knowledge to find what you want.
So now I am going to significantly reduce the rate at which I write articles on here, the plan is to create articles as and when something interesting comes along on all three of my blogs, Bruce on Politics, Bruce on Games and obviously Bruce on Shaving. Also, from a traditional shaving perspective, I am now putting a lot more of what comes along into the Pogonotomy forum, which attracts a lot more content from other people than a blog does, so gives a broader view.
Obviously I will still be posting articles here, it is just that they will not be so frequent. If you want to keep up with when these are published you can use the RSS feed, or the Twitter feed.
December 14th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
Greetings everyone, this is the last post I am going to make here in 2010, with the festive season rapidly approaching there are more important demands on my time. Service will resume in the new year and I would like to thank everyone who has visited here and read something, which is getting to be rather a lot of people. In the interim I will still be contributing to the Pogonotomy forum, which has some interesting discussions going on.
There are now 173 articles here at Bruce on Shaving, which is a respectable body of work. The search function using the box on the right hand side is really useful if there is something specific you want to know. There are 456 comments, which is a fantastic contribution from visitors to this site. Well done and thank you.
Looking at Google analytics shows that web traffic here is on a steadily upwards path, almost a straight line. Which is unsurprising as this is a reflection of ever increasing web presence, rather than any marketing effort, which tends to produce spikes. Total visitors here are now (since July 7th) 43,303 with 94,376 pageviews (and remember there are 10 articles per page when you don’t view them directly). Average time on site is 4.34 minutes, which is a long time in internet terms and shows that the content is being read. More visitors come from the USA than the next dozen countries put together.
Looking at the one month period November 11 to December 12 shows 15,591 visits, 33,650 page views, 2.16 page views/visit and 4.29 minutes average time on site. This is about half way towards my initial target and is not too bad considering the marketing budget is zero. If you do have the opportunity to mention this site in any way online it would be mightily appreciated.
So between now and January please have a fantastic festive season. And keep on enjoying the luxury of traditional shaving!
November 18th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
I must say that I am very impressed at the response to this new traditional shaving forum, obviously there is a need for a well run online community. 60 members already, many of them well known, well respected people from the traditional shaving world. Greg from iKon, Leisueguy the book author, Mantic59 of the famous videos, Fido of New Forest Shaving Brushes, Matt from Razor Emporium, beejay the artisan brush maker etc, a huge amount of expertise on hand to have their say. But everyone is welcome to join in, no matter what their level of knowledge.
And lots of good discussion, 83 topics and 274 posts of good quality. Also two people have kindly volunteers to be moderators.
The idea is to have an online community which is friendly and supportive with mutual respect where people are treated as they would like to be treated themselves. A tall order but it can be done.
The problem, as I wrote in my previous article about forums, is anonymous sociopaths who think that it is OK to trash other people’s lives with complete and utter disregard for the norms of civilised behaviour. And it is the anonymity that allows them to do it. These people mostly have families, homes and good jobs. Their real world friends and family would be horrified to discover how they behave.
Predictably two of these internet hooligans descended on the forum to try and trash it, presumably they thought that they were being clever. If they jumped over the wall of my home and started vandalising the garden I would call the police and their pictures, names and addresses would soon be in the local paper. But somehow they think that the internet is different.
So I banned them, banned their IP addresses and posted their IPs complete with Lookup details, just to let them know that they aren’t really anonymous. And they got off lightly, there are spammer databases used by blogs, forums and elsewhere on the internet, I could have referred them to these which would have curtailed their internet rights significantly.
This does not mean I am ever going to publish the IP addresses of other members, no matter how much I disagree with them and no matter how heated the discussion, because I won’t. What it does mean is that I am protecting the normal, civilised majority from the barbarians. We either have a civilised community or we don’t and I will do what it takes to make sure that we get the former outcome.
So come along and join in. There is some really interesting discussion going on.
November 15th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
We all know that most of the existing shaving forums leave a lot to be desired. Banning good members, deleting good content, allowing bad behaviour, behaving hypocritically, favouring certain vendors and being generally ungentlemanly.
So I have started a brand new forum http://pogonotomy.proboards.com
Currently it is not really a forum because there is nearly nothing there. So please join and please post stuff, we can only have a good forum if we make it so, otherwise we are stuck with the old ones.
November 10th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
The first full day at Bruce on Shaving was 8th July, so we have been going about 4 months, in that time there have been 147 articles written and 325 comments posted. During this time it has attracted 27,164 visits who have arrived here from 291 different sources and mediums.
Traffic has risen very steadily over the four months as Google sees more articles and more websites think that the content here is worth linking to. Most visitors come from the USA, in fact more than from the next 10 countries combined. A good reason to try and use dollar prices in articles.
The average visitor reads 2.19 pages (there are ten articles on the front page) and stays for 4.38 minutes. Visitors from Google Latvia have spent an average of 29.8 minutes per visit and visitors from blogcatalog.com have viewed an average of 8.5 pages per visit. At the other extreme visitors from images.google.com stayed an average of 3 seconds and visitors from quite a few different sources only came here to read the one page.
The most popular article is Frank Shaving. Chinese badger shaving brush with 1,380 people visiting it specifically (remember most people go to the front page and so don’t visit specific articles). Ian Tang must be very happy.
Next is The Gillette adjustable razors with 1,130 specific visitors.
But if you add in the 17,311 people who visited the front page you can see that most articles historically and all articles now are seen by over 1,000 people.
To show how traffic has developed, during the last month there have been 11,964 visits with 2.23 pages per visit and an average stay of 4.43 minutes.
There have been three articles by guest writers:
How iKon Razors Got Started.
The Leisureguy’s Guide to Gourmet Shaving story.
A beginner’s guide to boar brushes.
These are great mainly because they bring other people’s knowledge and experiences to the site, but a second advantage is that they mean less work for me.
Talking of work I am going to drop down to 5 articles per week, on weekdays. Firstly because there is now a sufficient body of work here, secondly because traffic drops off at weekends and thirdly because it is a lot of work writing these articles.
I would like to thank everyone who has visited the site and read any of the content here. Especially I would like to thank all the many people who have complimented me on the site, their kind words are what make all the work worthwhile. Please, everybody, feel free to add your comments to the articles (as long as you behave!) and please link to this site if you can, Google SEO is important for traffic.
November 2nd, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
- This blog is my bat and ball, and I get to decide who plays.
- Comments that bring something to the table are most welcome. Those that do not may be deleted.
- Personal attacks and insults will be deleted. You’re welcome to disagree with me or anyone else by presenting a counter argument, but don’t expect to see your post appear here if you’re overly sarcastic, rude or aggressive.
- This is a zero tolerance zone for profanity, it is not necessary amongst educated people.
- Spam will be notified to Akismet which will curtail the online activities of the spammer.
October 18th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
Family matters force my absence this week. But I have pre written articles for every day. So the only difference to the reader will be that comments will not be approved or replied to so quickly. I will take my netbook with me and plug it into the interwebs from time to time. Hopefully there will be a bit of spare time to do some shaving shopping.
October 14th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
This blog’s first full day was 8 July 2010, so it is a little over 3 months old. It is difficult to get a new site humming with no marketing budget, but thus far traffic has been steadily incremental. There have been a total of sixteen and a half thousand visits, with a peak day of 427. Visitors look at an average of 2.16 pages per visit (there are 10 articles on the front page), staying on average 4.44 minutes. Google says there are 5,420 internet links to here.
The most popular article by some margin is Frank Shaving Chinese badger brush, if everyone who read this bought one then there will be a lot of happy customers and a very happy supplier. The second most popular article was The Gillette adjustable safety razors, presumably because it gives so much information about the history of these fine razors.
Visitors have come from 104 countries and territories. The countries with an average visit time of over ten minutes include Australia, Denmark and Norway. Bulgarians stay for less than a minute.
There are 115 articles, with several of them written by guests. There have been 223 comments. If you would like to write an article for publication here then please contact me. The more contributors we have the more value that visitors will get from the site.
One very marked trend has been for articles here to lead to threads being started on all the traditional shaving forums. This is to be expected because we all live in the same village and chat about the same things. But it does mean that the real world reach of what is written here extends well beyond the immediate readership.
It has taken a lot of hard and enjoyable work to get here, quite a lot of future articles are already written, waiting for publication and there is still no end of ideas for more.
October 6th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
I have spent many years working in marketing in the video game industry. A very important aspect of this was getting reviews of our games in the media, so we sent out large numbers of free samples of every game to journalists hoping they would write about them. But the journalists never said in their reviews that they didn’t pay for the game. This is the same across every industry. You don’t think that an automotive magazine actually buys every Porsche and Ferrari that they test, do you?
In the video game industry in the early 1980s many kids started up their own magazines which were called fanzines, they did this just to get free games sent to them. And yes, we sent them free games. Nowadays people set up fansites and these days they don’t just get free games, they get invited to events, wined and dined etc etc. I know because I have been the marketing person who does this for them.
So fast forward to this blog, it is in men’s grooming which is a multi billion pound industry, so very soon after starting it I received offers of free stuff, which were turned down. This is because the stuff offered was not what I wanted to write about for my readers. If offers came in for stuff that was worth writing about then they would be very quickly accepted!
Which brings us nicely, to Frank Shaving. When I first discovered their brushes on eBay I took the risk with $9.99 of my own money and bought one. What came through the post was so fantastic that I thought that every wet shaver should know about it, so I evangelised these brushes with no gain whatsoever for myself. In fact the brushes are so good that I bought two more with my own money.
Then Ian Tang told me he was going to experiment with short lofted brushes and would I try them out for him. He sent me two and, in the interests of my readers, I wrote this up but stated quite clearly what had happened. Also when mentioning them on forums I made sure that the facts were very clear. Now $20ish worth of brushes does not buy very much of my time, so what was written was purely to inform the reader, not to benefit me. Anyone who thinks otherwise is plain stupid. It is worth pointing out that there are three articles on here about Simpson’s brushes and that I have paid for every Simpson’s brush that I own myself.
Also remember that most producers of kit send out samples all the time. In shaving I know of people who have sent stuff and people who have received stuff and then written about it as if they had bought it. But this is as nothing compared with forum owners who openly take money from vendors, presumably in exchange for favourable treatment and who then ban other, perfectly good traders. Is this for not paying up? And they then say that the bans are because these are bad traders, look at some of those who have been banned and decide for yourself.
Nanny’s Silly Soap Company is an excellent supplier of some of the best artisan soaps you can buy, iKon make one of the finest DE razors you can buy, New Forest Brushes sell very high quality brushes at reasonable prices, Connaught Shaving are one of the top suppliers of traditional shaving kit (especially blade sample packs) in Europe and Leisureguy is one of the most influential writers about traditional shaving. Yet you are not allowed to hear from them on certain shaving forums because they are banned, so the readers of those forums are misinformed because they are not getting the complete picture. In general some of the forums covering traditional shaving leave a lot to be desired.
So to get the record perfectly clear the only freebie I have ever received to write about in this blog was $20ish worth of short lofted Frank Shaving brushes from Ian Tang and it was made perfectly clear at the time that this was the case. Since then Leisureguy has very kindly offered to send me a copy of the 4th edition of the Leisureguy’s Guide to Gourmet Shaving, this after the article about it was published here. I have accepted because I want to read the book. Also Kimson has offered to send me a brush, once again after the article about them was published here. If he does I will tell my readers more about it, which is what they would want.
So I am on the moral high ground here and those who have criticised me are often doing so from a position of dubious morality. And to all those kit suppliers out there, keep on sending me the freebies, but no Fusion razors please.
September 16th, 2010 — Housekeeping, announcements etc
Our first full day was the 8th of July so we have been going a little over two months. In that time we have attracted 8,953 visits (thank you everyone), with the average visitor reading 2.12 pages (which is a lot with 10 articles per page) and staying for 4.14 minutes. This total is about half of my one day visitor record at Bruce on Games which gives some idea of the potential out there for a blog to reach people. Bruce on Shaving has a long way to go, but the upside is there, far more of the world’s population shave than play video games.
There are 86 articles written (who, if anyone, has read them all?) and there are 93 approved comments, which is still disappointingly low, maybe I should engender more controversy. The most popular article has been the low priced starter kits for sale (which are still available), followed by one about Frank Shaving brushes.
The number one source of visitors is search engines which means that this site is performing well from an SEO perspective. It also shows that we have not been referenced enough by other sites yet, an indication of just how short a time this has been going. Analytics shows traffic coming from just 147 sources, another result of being new on the block. I have done no advertising and no proper marketing since the initial press release. So the steady traffic growth is largely organic.
It is interesting to compare blogs with forums from a traffic perspective, I run Artforums.co.uk so have a foot in both camps. Blogs build a lot more traffic a lot more quickly. Already this blog has more daily visitors than a lot of active, long established forums and if growth continues it will relatively quickly have more traffic than a substantial forum.
I think that this is because a lot of people have been burned by forums, they often tend to be quite nasty places populated by anonymous cliques who readily revert to sociopathic behaviour. Very few are moderated with sufficient intelligence to prevent this.
Blogs, however are a largely passive experience for the user, all they have to do is read, commenting is not necessary to keep the show on the road, although it does add to the proceedings. Any inappropriate comments get binned which keeps the place civilised. It is up to the blog owner to keep on generating the content that the visitors want.
I will try and update next month. In the meantime don’t be shy about having your say on here. And if you can link into here from a website it would be greatly appreciated.