Reflections on 2014

It is the last day of the year, again. Everyone (mostly) is all dressed up, getting caught in traffic jams, trying to get to the restaurants where they made reservations for one last feast before proceeding to various bars and countdown spots to usher in the new year, again. This is prime time for single men/women to go out and meet new people.

So, I did the only sensible thing that I can think of: bought KFC (new set, with prawns), came back to my place and prepared myself a somewhat epicurean feast of KFC, blanched vegetables and grapes.

The Japanese have KFC for Christmas, I don’t see any reason why I cannot have KFC for New Year Eve dinner.

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I can’t handle crowds and traffic jams well (at all). And I was sick anyway. When I left my KL home yesterday morning, mom reminded me to take it easy, and to 喝多一点凉水 (drink more herbal tea).

So, at the imminent risk of remaining single for another year (maybe five) and listening to mom nag for the corresponding period of time, I am here sitting in my room, blogging, with a bottle of 红毛凉茶 angmoh lingteh (also known as adult fruit juice) for company.

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I was going to write about how I spent most of 2014 without really knowing what I was doing, because that’s what many bloggers did, but then I received an email from WordPress’ Jetpack with a link to this:

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How lovely! An annual report for my blog! There’s my blog material for the day!

I don’t remember receiving such a convenient gesture for the old blog. This makes me doubly happier that I decided to migrate to WordPress. Let’s see what my report card says..

First, some interesting figures..

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Let’s see, the counting starts when I migrated to WordPress in mid July. That means it is 23000 pageviews in five and a half months, or roughly 4200 pageviews per month, or 140 pageviews per day. Now, these are probably laughable figures to most, but it is rather impressive from my personal point of view.

You see, when I was on the old blog, I was averaging about 200 pageviews per month. After putting some real cash in and forcing myself to do this seriously, I grew 2100% in less than 6 months! See, it’s all about how you present your data to make yourself sound impressive. I might be able to make it as a politician 😉 .

If that doesn’t impress you, read carefully the words in the picture above, and then imagine holding 9 sold-out concerts in the Sydney Opera House. If that doesn’t blow your mind away, I don’t know what will. Thanks Jetpack, for pandering to my ego!

Next, there’s a list of Top 5 most viewed pages..

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I’m not exactly sure if I am very happy with this list. Except for #3 (which I think shot up the charts because the author of the comic book, Grace, shared my post on her own Facebook page and got me a bunch of views), notice how the rest of them are posts with less than 20 comments?

My most popular posts are not the ones that are most engaging. They are not the ones that I spent most effort thinking and writing. They are not the ones with the most personal touches. They are the ones that I accidentally laced with enough SEO (Search Engine Optimization) keywords to make it to the front pages of search engines. In other words, stray traffics.

I know, I should not be complaining. A successful blogger should not fret at stray search engine traffic, any form of traffic is good traffic. Maybe in 2015, I should work hard to incorporate SEO keywords in more of my posts while remaining personal enough to be engaging…

No!! Who am I kidding? If I do that, the effort per post would skyrocket! Then, instead of posting once a day, I will be posting once a month! No! I do not want to do that! I refuse to go that route! Lazy Man will resist that path as hard as he can!

You guys can monitor me. If you start seeing me making less posts, that might be an indication that I have crossed over to the dark side..

Anyway, if you want to help push these 5 posts further up the rankings, here’s the links:

  1. James Foo Western Food @ Bayan Baru
  2. Morganfield’s Christmas Menu
  3. Comic Book From Japan!
  4. Armenian Street @ Georgetown, Penang
  5. 太子挞 Tai Zi Ta Egg Tarts @ Taman Muda

Moving on, there’s also a list of Top 5 commenters for the year..

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Now, don’t take me showing this list as a sign that I want you to start spamming comments. I don’t. There’s no year end prize for most comments.

I try to reply to each and every comment (because that’s good manners), so if you spam me with 10 comments per person per post, you would only give me a big headache on what to reply. Not to mention that since I am on self-hosting now, each comment counts as storage space on the server. If you give me 10 comments instead of 1 comment per post, it means you are hogging 10 spaces in the server instead of just 1 space. Don’t do me like that, server space costs money and is GST-able.

Still, I appreciate comments, and I appreciate replies to my comment replies. Comments tell me what you really think of what I write, and how I can improve. I love comments, I just don’t love comments with the purpose of winning the top commenter prize (there’s none by the way). You might have noticed, sometimes I will edit 2 comments from the same person into 1 comment if I can help it, especially if it the 2nd comment is a typo rectification. I hope you don’t mind me doing that on your behalves.

Since I love comments, I might still give the gift of link back to my top commenters with a personal touch.. Yeah, I’ll do it.

  1. Mun My first regular reader and commenter ever since I migrated to WordPress. I love her comments the most, they are always insightful and easy to reply. I think Mun is generally a very insightful person herself.
  2. suituapui More widely known as the Sibu Food Mayor. He used to be an English teacher (I think.. am I right?) so you know he writes with proper quality. And if you want to read about all the wonderful food options in Sibu (Sarawak), you won’t go wrong with his blog.
  3. Princess Ribbon Me thinks we could be soulmates. Too bad she is a married mom, otherwise I might “chase” her 😳 .. and apparently she can always eat 20 buns or 5 bowls of rice. If we eat out together, there won’t be anyone to stop me from eating because she will be eating more 😀 ..
  4. [SK] – Resident IT/HTML/Javascript expert. His blog is a myriad of impressive slideshows and wonderful buttons to press, much much more interesting that the mundane blog templates that we are accustomed to. And.. and.. he has a monthly top commenter award over at his own blog. Is there a prize? I think there’s a prize. GO, GO BOMB HIS BLOG WITH COMMENTS! (Thambee, don’t get mad at me, I’m semi drunk at this point and trying to drive traffic to your blog 😉 ).
  5. Phong HongResident cooking/baking expert. More towards baking. She might say she is no expert, but do not trust her. Trust your eyes when looking at the pictures in her blog. My mom is worried that I read her blog so much and more worried that I might try some of her recipes.

Okay, lastly, there’s a world map. It tells me that people from 82 countries in the world has made their way to my blog in 2014. Wow!

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I was curious. United States & Australia were not far behind? That would be super amazing. I was expecting at least 50% of my traffic are from Malaysia. And 82 countries! It would be interesting to see which countries. So I went back to WordPress’ detailed stats page to make a snapshot..

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LOL! I was misled! Turns out United States and Australia are quite far behind, as I expected! How dare you give me false excitement, Jetpack?

And, I am surprised by some of the countries that showed up in the list. Apparently I got a visit from someone sipping martini on the beach in Barbados. Awesome! And I got visits from some countries that I heard of, but know next to nothing about them: Azerbaijan, El Salvador, Zimbabwe, Belize, Namibia. How did anyone from these countries end up on my blog? I will need to find out what they searched on Google to end up here. It will give me more ideas to reach out to more people.


I guess I am overall quite happy with my blog’s 2014 performances. Let’s hope for better things to come in 2015.

Let me stop here. I need to make this post before 12.00AM. Let me end this final post of 2014 with something very generic..

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL MY READERS! MAY YOUR 2015 BE BLESSED WITH ABUNDANT HEALTH AND WEALTH, IN THAT PARTICULAR ORDER!

 

 

32 Comments

  1. First of all, I don’t mind if you edit my typos and delete that message – you make me look very intelligent when you do that as I usually read AFTER I hit the post button! 🙂 And what an amazing second half of 2014 you had. I started my blog in July of 2013 and I had only about 4000 views for the entire 6 months of 2013. However, I got into my groove going in 2014 and my numbers spiked dramatically (for me anyway). And I think this is the first year wordpress did the annual ‘year in review’ summary as I can’t remember receiving one last year!

    Happy New Year! Hope you are feeling better!

    • I guess it really takes time to get going. Sometimes you just need that lucky break here and there, you write something that hits a chord and it goes viral, and all of a sudden you get a big jump. Of course that can only happen if you consistently write good pieces.
      So I was among the first recipients of the year in review thing huh. Awesome!

  2. 4,000+ views in a month sounds pretty amazing to me – I still only get a few hundred! Maybe I should learn a bit more about SEO…

    Happy new year!

    Laura
    PS I love that you had KFC for your NYE dinner.

    • Most travel blogs that has matured easily get 10 times or more of my figure, I think you will get there in time 😉

    • I really wasn’t expecting it. Before this, every time I get an email from Jetpack, it means bad news: my website is down again, LOL!

  3. Congrats on your awesome blog stats!! I think it was awesome considering your (new) blog is only half a year old! (And grrr super jealous :p). Whatever you’re doing is right, and entertaining us with personal stories is the way to go for more engaged readers. I got the same Jetpack analysis and one of my most viewed post was “how much does it cost to live in Santiago” which got like no comments. I hate that!
    Anyway, keep up the good blogging!! Excited to see how far you’ll grow in 2015!

  4. It’s great that you get a report…no such thing with blogger. Congrats on your exponential increase in page views! Looks like you do quite a bit of ‘extra’ work….SEO keywords?, cash?, what people searched on Google to get to your blog?…I don’t even know what that means (if people who can’t sing are “tone deaf”, then I’m “IT deaf”) 😀

    • Don’t worry, it’s not rocket science. If you really want to know more, there are tonnes of information on the web. Or you can ask me in mail, I will answer to the best of my knowledge..

  5. Happy 2015! KFC is good. We just had a simple dinner at home, nothing special. Busy as my Singapore friend and his friends are in town, having a great time here! Leaving tomorrow.

      • Hey!!! I didn’t really see this one, no time then to read carefully – friends from Singapore in town. Princess Ribbon mentioned it…so I am back to look see more carefully. Hehehehehe!!!!

        Ummmm….my report is dated 11th January leh? Yours so early…can blog about it on Dec 31st. Hey!!! I’m No. 2!!! *pat on the back* Wahhhh!!!! Got blog review some more. Thank you, thank you!

        • It’s not dated 11th January, that date changes if you look carefully, it’s just a list of dates when you have a new post, which in your case is everyday I suppose 😀 .. The report itself was available on New Year’s Eve I think..

  6. aiyoyo!!! OMG!!! i am being mentioned in this post!! that is such a great honour!! “Resident IT/HTML/Javascript expert” huh??? errr, i don’t have such a big head for this big hat woh, muahahaha!!

    p/s: i prefer the word “guru” actually.. XD XD XD LOL!!!!

  7. Very entertaining post and hey, I made it to top 5 commentator 😀 If I were single, my new year dinner would probably be like yours. But topped with a homemade salad. Yeah, I like KFC. Anyway, me and my partner had Japanese food last night and both of us ended up with rowdy stomachs later 🙁 Needless to say, our “fireworks” started way before the clock struck midnight 🙁 I think it was the less than pristine sashimi.

    Geez, this WordPress is good, eh? Gives a nice and detailed report of your blog’s performance. You did rather well and I am sure you will do even better this year. Don’t have this sort of thing at blogspot.

    Oh, hee..hee.. I like your short write-up on me. Expert? **blush** I am counting on you trying my recipes 🙂

    Happy New Year 2015!

    • I think Blogspot has their own Statistics page which has quite a lot of information too, but you are right, they don’t compile a nice report for you end of the year 😀
      I have to wait for a while, for the wind to die down, before I can even think of trying. My mom’s eagle eye is on right now 😐

  8. Morning and happy new year ! My new year’s eve more boring la.. Went to work as usual yesterday, left at 5.30pm, reached home at 7pm, went out for dinner at a nearby kopitiam tai chau kiu soong only.. Today? Dunno yet, still in bed as I’m typing this..
    Wooot, I ♥ ♥ ♥ what you wrote about me here, very flattering, I take that as a compliment.. But then, I think I’m older than you many years wor, if I’m not married, sure boh you wana chase me? *blush*
    Anyway wishing you & family happy new year and a better 2015 ahead 😛

    • That is definitely a compliment! Tsk.. since you are married, there is no need to ask and answer that question 😉 .
      Happy New Year to you and your family too!

  9. Such detailed analysis, I love reading it, honestly I am getting to like your blog more and more each day, by the way KFC my favourite too

    • I’m glad with your increased liking! 😀 , such details, if not for the Jetpack report, I wouldn’t be bothered able to conjure it 😀 .

  10. Happy New Year to you too! May you be blessed with good health and prosperity in 2015. Congrats on getting a good report card from wordpress.

    Your New Year Eve dinner is way better than mine. It was raining heavily when I left the office so I did not stop anywhere for dinner. Just ate 2 slices of bread and an orange for dinner.

    Thank you for the nice surprise. I did not realise that my hou sui dor gor char and so I left that many comments here. I like that you use the word insightful, definitely boost my ego there. 🙂

    Lastly thank you for posting interesting posts here. Keep up the good work and never go over to the dark side. May the force be with you!

    • It was terribly hot in Penang on New Year’s Eve, after days of continuous raining! But I read that typhoon Jangmi will hit northern Malaysia this Saturday. I hope it doesn’t do too much damage 😐
      I shall try my level best to remain with the bright side 😀
      And, Happy New Year to you, again!

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