I am writing Charts for three months now, and I’d like to share with you some stats, some thoughts, some expectations and plans for 2008.
First things first: thank you. Thanks for reading and commenting, thanks for linking, thanks for buying the dashboard. Thanks for sharing your time.
So, basic stats: 30 posts, 150 daily visitors, 200 subscribers. A large majority of visitors comes here because of the Excel dashboard, the populations pyramids and the Xcelsius dashboard series. Around 500 readers downloaded the free version of the Demographic Dashboard and a fraction of you bought the “How-To” version.
Is this what I expected? Realistically, yes. I confess that I overestimated the number of posts I could write. English is not my mother language and it takes me ages to write a single post. Hopefully, by the very nature of the process this will improve over time and I’ll be able to write better and faster.
If people are coming here because they want to know how to create an Excel dashboard, I should (I will) provide more and better content around this topic, not a page and a downloadable file only. I do believe that the “Demographic Dashboard How-To edition” is great value for money and the average Excel user can learn a lot from it, but I must provide more context (by the way, I expect to release a second version during January and the current users will have free access to it).
Finally, sometimes I feel that the blog looks too self-centered. I should link out more, discuss some great products and posts I find on the Web (and some suggested by the authors) and perhaps give more and better feedback. Once again, the process is painfully slow and I have a long list of posts waiting.
What are my expectations and plans for 2008? Quiting my day-time job and changing the world seem to be out of question, so let me see, what’s left? Well, writing my About page would be a good start…
I do have some quantifiable goals for 2008, but writing about them is kind of boring (are consumers interested on the production goals of a manufacturing plant?). But I’ll try to follow some guide lines you may be interested in:
- Write around a few selected topics: dashboards, visualization theory, chart critique and charting tools;
- Target the beginner and release several how-to screencasts;
- Design and start posting my own visualizations.
Let me tell you about my blog monetization strategy:
- No ad links: I want to talk about things I love and make people stay as long as possible, not send them away (God knows where to…);
- Amazon: I am using the Amazon’s widget on the right to recommend books I like or are recommended by someone I usually agree with; they must be relevant to the visualization field;
- Affiliate programs: if there is an affiliate link for a product or service I would recommend anyway I will use it (disclosing the affiliate link).
And there will be a new site.