Launch of a new Website

Launch of a new Website

Over 17 years after my first website was launched on tinet (or Telecom Internet) which later became Eircom.net and which I then moved to shanemcdonald.org, I have started to port the site over to the new domain of shanemcdonald.ie which I feel is a timely move.

I am currently redesigning the site and trying to firstly make it mobile friendly, as my original site for shanemcdonald.org was all coded by hand between 2001 and 2011 during a time when mobile was not an issue. As soon as mobile started to have an impact, I added some mobile friendly code but I felt it wasn’t enough and here we are today with shanemcdonald.ie up and running and almost finished.

There is still a bit to do in redirecting the old site using .htaccess files and some php redirects, plus I still have to redirect the Queen site to this domain (thats work for another day)

I hope to add more to the site in the coming weeks and hopefully it will be 100% finished and moved by the end of May or early June.

Simple Tip for better WordPress SEO ?

Simple Tip for better WordPress SEO ?

I just learned of something which might be hampering your attempts to get good levels of traffic to your site if you are using WordPress.

One of the best things about WordPress is that you can add a category or two to your post. It turns out that listing your blog post under more than one category might be considered as duplicate content in Googles eyes and your site may be penalised.

I will be posting under only 1 category for a while to see if this helps with the site traffic / SEO on the site.

Any comments – please add them below to discuss the search tricks you use for WordPress SEO

How failing to have regular website updates can hurt your traffic

How failing to have regular website updates can hurt your traffic

I had being blogging quite a lot between July 2011 and January 2012 but due to may things, I had very infrequent updates to the blog and to the website in general since January. The one thing I noticed was a drop in traffic and this is something which Google and Search Engines love to see – Regular Updates with Original Quality Content.

Below is a graph of traffic to the website since the regular updates to the site were reduced to once a month or once every three weeks. I’m now doing a test to see how a concerted effort on content might grow this traffic once more.

Regular traffic updates help grow your website traffic - SEO Website Traffic Growth

I’m going to have a blog post on the site once every three days if possible and can then assess the results in traffic numbers. I’m looking at getting the traffic back up over the 50K unique visitors per month.

Lets wait and see…

Website Traffic – 2011’s Site Traffic in Review

Website Traffic – 2011’s Site Traffic in Review

Looking back at the year that was on my website, 2011 was the year Google Panda visited my site, Twitter and Facebook had an impact on search and website traffic, and an overall increase of 21% on traffic from 2010.

2011 looks like hitting 690,000 unique visitors and 1.8 Million Page Views.

20 The Most Popular Pages on the site

1. Piano Chord Shapes : 198,647  pageviews
2. 420 Chords – ChordMap : 152,515 pageviews
3. Guitar Chords :  51,751 pageviews
4. Learn To Read Music : 50,402 pageviews
5. Easy Music Transposer : 42,333 pageviews
6. Queen Album List / Discography : 34,164 pageviews
7. Chordmap Italiano : 33,584 pageviews
8. Learn Types of Music Notes : 32,594 pageviews
9. How to Transpose : 32,199 pageviews
10. Shanes Queen Site Homepage : 31,194 pageviews
11. Guitar Chord Bm : 27,729 pageviews
12. Guitar Chord List : 27,131 pageviews
13. Piano Chord C Major : 24,666 pageviews
14. Bohemian Rhapsody Chords : 24,075 pageviews
15. How to Fix and iPhone / iPod Touch, with a Frozen Safari App : 23,121 pageviews
16. Homepage :  20,130 pageviews
17. Guitar Chord of Bb Maj 19,159 pageviews
18. Piano Chord of C  : 16,702 pageviews
19. Piano Chord Variations in C :  14,552 pageviews
20. Piano Chords in Spanish : 13,443 pageviews

Top 10 Pages on the Blog

1. How to Fix and iPhone / iPod Touch, with a Frozen Safari App : 23,121 views
2. Flight Radar Vs Plane Finder iPhone Apps : 8,615 views
3. Blog Homepage : 1,683 views
4. Fix an iPhone or iPod Touch which Won’t Start : 1,570 views
5. iPhone 4 expected in Ireland in Early June : 762 views
6. Irish Language – What a Waste of Time  : 642 views
7. Top 5 Things to Do in Singapore : 592 views
8. UFO Spotted over Copacabana Beach : 572 views
9. Goalkeeper Saves Penalty and Celebrates as Ball Rolls in to Goal : 548 views
10. NDrive – iPhone Sat Nav App : 360 views

Google Panda Update Visited the Site

Google Panda is a change to the Google’s search results ranking algorithm.This change reportedly affected the rankings of almost 12 percent of all search results, my site was affected in October with traffic dropping by about 60%. Below is the output from Google Analytics which shows the dramatic drop in traffic during that time – thankfully traffic was come back up towards normal levels.

ShaneMcDonald.org Website Traffic 2011

Photo of Ghostly Pair of Legs – Ghost Photo?

Photo of Ghostly Pair of Legs – Ghost Photo?

In the past 3 days I have being getting a lot of traffic from a site called Unexplained-Mysteries.com (http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=214475) and their reference to a ghostly pair of legs which I took a ghostly photo of in Prague about 10 years ago. (see ghost photo below)

Photo of Ghost at Prague Castle - no body just legs - Ghost Photo
I decided to go onto the Unexplained-Mysteries.com site and have a read about what was being discussed. Most people seem to think the photo was a long exposure however the camera I had at the time was a ultra basic Olympus which not capable of any advanced photography. Also, I went into the histogram and saw that the setting was 1/2 s not really the circumstances for a long exposure for faking a ghost photo.

The Arguments – is it a Fake or Long Exposure?

  • One person commented it was  a fake created through long exposure – I don’t think 1/2 s is long enough for this, also no deliberate attempt was made to attempt to deceive people or try to create a fake ghost picture.( I was simply there taking a photo of my friend coming down the steps.)
  • One person said it is somebody running – how can you run with stiff legs?
  • One person said you would not notice if others were around – the area in question was enclosed and guards were locking-down for the evening (castle gates closed at 10:30pm and the guards would not let us in, which is why we had to take out photos here), plus after the photo was taken and we actually saw the ghostly legs on the camera’s digital view-screen we checked around to see if others were around. Nobody!

The strange thing was that at the time, this image was visible on the cameras digital viewfinder and we had repeated views of it that night, trying to explain what it was, well in advance of the photos being downloaded to the computer.

Do you believe in Ghosts? Have you ever taken something strange like this?…

It remains one of the strangest photos I have ever taken.