Making ripples on the Internet – write with care…

I adopted the name Ripples for this weblog because thoughts spread through the internet like…ripples, and I wanted to share my thoughts with as many people as would find them helpful.

Unlike email, which is often enforced communication, I had hoped this site would be a useful resource for those visitors who found their way here. That seems to be happening.

I am finding that my ideas are finding a wider audience than I ever anticipated, and it is a sobering experience. In my first year of blogging, I have had about 40,000 visitors, most of them via search engines.

Because of the way that Google works, I find that the most casual utterances by a blogger can be given equal weight against the carefully crafted efforts of vast commercial sites.

For example, I saw that I was getting a lot of hits from Google recently and followed one back to see what it was all about.

People entering “anniversary present” in Google found this blog listed in the number one position on the first page. It was result #1 of about 3,530,000 for “anniversary present”. (0.35 seconds)

Ripples: Anniversary present
… Sep 18, 2004. Anniversary present. … Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Anniversary present: Comments. Congratulations and happy anniversary! … 2004/09/anniversary_pre.html – 30k – Cached – Similar pages

My post was an expression of my thanks for having finally achieved a lasting and happy relationship and it ranks with commercial messages affecting thousands of businesses. I’m glad that I didn’t write something frivolous. Google had my post listed first among the millions of web pages discussing or selling anniversary presents.

My concept of this weblog as a source point of useful ideas and opinions seems to have been unduly conservative. I am beginning to see that it as a growing responsibility, not as a private discussion between close friends. In any event, it brought home to me that there is an audience for what I am writing and that I can expand these essays to address topics which are most useful to readers.

It opens the door to a wealth of interesting essay topics and reinforces the potential value of writing books that are a compilation of the advice found to be most interesting to readers.

I first got the idea of a weblog as the ultimate power tool, when I saw the names of blogs and bloggers coming up at the top of Google search results.

That was almost a year ago when blogs were still operating below the radar and were rarely mentioned by major media outlets. Blog advertising was still a remote and unlikely possibility for all but Instapundit.

Since then, more of my blogging friends are melding blogging with business. With the visibility that search engines give blogs, it may work out that more of us will find a means of supporting ourselves from our writing and research efforts.

What a cheerful thought!

Update: Wayne Hurlbert, at Blog Business World writes: check out this comprehensive and growing list of ways to create revenue streams from your blog. The revenue ideas were formulated from this Spring’s BloggerCon.

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