I am going to get ahead of myself on Lorelle's Blogging Challenge and skip what was supposed to be the third installment to the Blogging Challenge series. Let's just say that ironically, personal blogging tends to be a little more…tricky when it comes to trying to write one down when the mood hasn't hit you. Since the mood hasn't hit me yet and I might actually save it for a more important occassion, I'm skipping to the next challenge which just happens to be about who's linking to me.
This just happens to be one of the easier challenges. Mainly because I do happen to keep track of all incoming links to Footsteps in the Mirror. When some of you happen to be surprised that I know you talked about me…or have that new blog up that you haven't told us about yet, it all boils down to your incoming links from your post or your blogrolls.
Now, while the incoming links on WordPress.com blogs uses Google Blogsearch, I find that it's slightly less than accurate given that it only picks up links that Google spiders. The standalone version of WordPress however uses Technorati to check for incoming links, it does appear more accurate or at least…more incoming links than what Google has to offer. But just to be a little more precise, scientific-like and proving that I'm not entirely lazy and all, I went ahead and checked the whole nine yards and this is what I got.
- Technorati (1084 instances)
- Google (10600/2140 instances)
- Google Blogsearch (69/380 instances)
- SitePopularity (5740/12020 intsances)
- Icerocket (135 instances)
- Market Leap (9250/13662 instances)
If you're getting confused with why some searches come up with two results, don't be. The reason why there are two results was because I was using two different forms of the same link in the first place, one "kamigoroshi.net" and the other "www.kamigoroshi.net". For sites like Technorati and Icerocket, there aren't any difference. It is both the same thing, but for search engines or link calculators that rely heavily on search engines, they are considered two seperate domains altogether. That's usually where the confusion starts. And you can't really rely on search engine searches on your own domain, they just end up with your own site to begin with. I just have to remember to work on using the "non-www" version of my domain. I don't know why, but I know there is a geeky reason to it. Maybe someone can explain.
So what have I learnt from all this? Nothing that I already don't know. For the most part, while the bulk of incoming links are credited to being on someone else's blogrolls, a significant part of all incoming links happen to be from other blog posts either refrerring to me as a person or a post that I have written before. To me, that can be a good thing. You see, it's one thing to just be a stagnant name on someone's blogroll. It's another to be referred to within a post, whether for something good or something bad.
Think about it this this way, in that sense, you could either be just another face in the crowd or be part of a community in which interacts with one another for better or for worse. Depending on how you value your own blog privacy, building relationships with other bloggers in the community is worth more than just having your blog plastered on someone's link. There has got to be a reason for people to move their fat greasy fingers and start clicking on your link. Here is a crazy idea, maybe having people talk about you or discuss your opinions even if it's a brief mention might do the trick. It's worth a try anyway.
At the end of this challenge, you have to realize that even if you have oodles of people linking to you. It doesn't really matter if that raises your Google Page Rank. It matters that for all that you are as a blogger, you have the ability to relate and interact with people and build a community around your blog. It doesn't matter if you're a personal blogger or a blog that caters to professional products, the center of a blog is its ability to interact with people. You can't do that if you're another faceless link somewhere. You can however, do that when you've worked yourself into the conversation with other blogs. Those are the links that matter, the ones which give people a reason to come back and reread what you've said or did, not the ones that stagnate in the sea of a few million blogs.
So remember, always work to inspire people to form a community or niche of links around you. Whether as a friend or even as an opposing thought. It doesn't matter as long as people have a reason to link. Always work to build that. The rest of it is always entirely negotiable.