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Blogger Tags and the Mysteries of Search Engine Traffic

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I just realized that Blogger allows you to add tags to blog posts.

Actually, I must give credit where it's due and that belongs to my online pal and fellow member of Blogcritics Magazine and The Mondo Project, Mat Brewster. I've seen tags appear on blogspot blogs countless times, I'm sure, but absolutely assumed that they were part of some fancy plug-in that was not for the likes of me.

Part of my reintroduction to blogging from my own site, Dumpster Bust, on Blogger (as opposed to writing exclusively for BC, which I did for about a year) is that I've been able to better tune in to how bloggers are organizing themselves and their information, promoting themselves, and building audience.

This post is a bit of an experiment. Since I started posting to Dumpster Bust regularly since the first of the year, I've noticed that the majority of my traffic comes from the following sources:

* MyBlogLog: A great networking site for bloggers, it also helps to bring in some traffic.

* Techmeme: Great great source for following current tech and online media stories and the conversations springing up around them. I've been able to hit this page a nice number of times, and have brought back some visitors because of it.

* Blogcritics Magazine: Cross-publishing at the old battleship BC absolutely has a positive effect on one's "home site" bottom line.

* Search traffic: mostly Google.com, but drips and drabs from Yahoo!, Ice Rocket (I think mentioning Mark Cuban's name helps, which is indeed worthy of another experiment!), and Google Blog Search.

Search traffic is that great randomizer. If you can pull lots of it, you can sail off to Tahiti for six months and still have rip roaring traffic stats when you get back. If you don't, it's a grind-it-out battle to itch and scratch each reader home for supper.

This is somewhat the topic of a raging debate of the online moment, with entrepreneur and provocateur Jason Calacanis setting off fireworks with talk of SEO (search engine optimization, or rigging one's code to harness more search engine traffic) being "bullshit" and a swift and immediate blowback from the likes of Neil Patel following, who challenges Jason to allow him to increase his own traffic "by a minimum of 10 to 20% after 30 days of putting my changes into effect" with promises of no shady dealings on route. And it seems Jason has accepted – the great SEO throwdown is on!

In any event, without being shady (I know so little about code that this would be very difficult anyway!) and as openly as I can, I've placed a nice number of wide ranging links and references here that hopefully add up to nearly a coherent whole.

I've listed the following blog tags as part of this post over on Dumpster Bust: blogger, blog, blogs, google, search, SEO, ice rocket, mark cuban, google blog search, techmeme, mybloglog, blogcritics, jason calacanis, neil patel, page rank

So the questions are: did I "optimize" this post by writing a decent piece and linking out to fellow bloggers and engagers in the online conversation? Or will dropping a deluge of tags at the bottom help auto-magically bring home some visitors? Or, perhaps, did none of this pile up to a hill of e-beans in the vast vacuum of the blogospheric realm?

I'll report back the results, and look forward to your thoughts.

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  • Eight months on, what results did you actually get? Enquiring minds want to know!