TDavid Makes me go Hmm

I recently participated in a bit of a review swap with TDavid at Make you go Hmm.  In the end, I feel that I shorted him in that my review was short and sweet, while the review that he ended up sending me is several hundred words and really quite useful.  I’ve asked for and received permission to quote his review a little bit while I cover some of the things that were included.

I’ll save you having to read the entirety, not because it’s bad, but because by the time I add my comments, it could become the longest post ever.

His points: in bold

My response/thoughts: below the bold blockquotes

leave commenting open on older posts.

This is actually something that I struggled with quite a bit when I closed the comments on the older posts.  The fact of the matter was that I was getting enough spam messages that they very nearly made up for 1/3 of my traffic.  I don’t have a lot of traffic, but that certainly is alot of messages for me.  I’ve given some thought to the subject since the review and have turned comments back on.  TDavid makes a very valid point.  “As search engines will pick up on older posts and you will find new comments and readers if you allow them.”  I’ve turned on Akismet instead and am happy with it so far.

favicon would be helpful

Done.  I’m no designer so they are fairly simple.  But they are there.  In fact, I thought that thatedeguy had one.  The file was there, but at somepoint the code in the index file was removed during a template change.

too much screen real estate used by header image

I would have never really noticed it.  I haven’t made any changes to that just yet, but I’m thinking on it and most likely will.  Again, TDavid makes a valid point.

would like to see more images and other non-text media

Me too.  This is actually something that I really, really need to work on.  Most often, I just don’t take the time to find something viable for the post.  I don’t do a lot of reviews and such, so screenshots are most often out of the question.

little to no advertising in the posts themselves but an above average amount in the surrounding sidebars

This again brings me back to the forest<>trees arguement.  I happen to find advertising in the post themselves to be extremely annoying.  Perhaps at some point I’ll put something between posts.  As for the above average amount, I agree.  I have both Chitika and Commission Junction running on my site, and for the life of me, I’m not sure why anymore.  Neither is converting very well at all.  The CJ stuff is nice for inserting into a post once in a while when relevant, but the Chitika doesn’t perform the click throughs.  TDavid also mentioned something about the “cheap car insurance, online florist shop and gift ideas will leave a negative (splog/spam) impression with some visitors.”  Unfortunately, those ads that he’s speaking of are the text-link-ads that I have running.  Based on the revenue that they are bringing me, they aren’t going away anytime soon.  I do slightly agree with TDavid on his point, I just can’t give up the highest revenue stream on the site.

don’t care for the long icon Social bookmarks bar after each post.

At the time when he wrote the review, there were about 10-15 of the little buggers at the end of each post page.  I’ve cut that down to 4.  After I read the review, I realized that not only was TDavid right, but I didn’t even know what half of them were.

search is more useful to readers than your current design promotes

I’ve since changed this, but the search did only appear in the footer of the page.  It now appears front and slightly to the right in the sidebar.  TDavid made mention of using something other than the google search bar, but again, revenue streams.

2005 have some broken supergeekblog links

Hmm…  I’ll do some looking.  I’m not sure why there would be any broken links to that site.

liked how you intermingled a little personal life stuff like the birth of your new son (congrats)

Thanks!  Thatedeguy.com was always meant to be my personal blog, but with all things there comes change.  I’ve intermingled a lot of tech and news and even a little politics in too. 😉

good amount of linking out to other interesting content

I try.  Credit where Credit is due and soforth.

the most popular posts links isn’t highlighted/spotlighted enough

Hmm…  I’m not entirely sure how to do any better than what I have done.  It sits over on the right sidebar and gives out a count.  Anyone out there have any good ideas on better ways to promote my Popular Posts?  My ears are open to suggestions.

Also, If you come here regularly(or this is your first time), and you have a suggestion, please feel free to use the handy-dandy contact form that I added yesterday.

My sincere thanks go out to TDavid.  It must have taken a fair amount of time to read through my archives and even longer to formulate a well thought out review like you did.  If any of the rest of you are still reading this, please go and visit Make you go Hmm.  It’s well written and pretty darn interesting most of the time.

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About Shane Ede

Shane Ede is an IT guy by day and a Entrepreneurial Blogger by night. You can follow him here on Thatedeguy or over on Twitter and Google+.

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