Several of you have emailed and messaged me saying “What’s going on with the blog? You haven’t posted in a couple of weeks.” This post tries to answer some of the pitfalls I’ve encountered lately with the blog and a new (hopefully) upcoming website. It is somewhat of a rant.
How I Began as a Blogger
I never wanted to be a blogger, but I became one in a round-about way. A couple of years after my early retirement, I found myself a little uncomfortable in my directionless state. I knew that I didn’t want to go back to work, but I definitely needed a project. My projects in the past–real estate and stock market investing–just didn’t interest me anymore, probably because I had reached “my number.” My newest hobby–stockpiling miles and points with credit card sign ups and manufactured spending–while challenging, didn’t provide enough depth of experience to be satisfying. I thought that developing some kind of on-line business would keep me busy and off the streets. (After retirement I compulsively traveled for two years.)
Plane2Port and Cruise Search Engine
After having booked many cruises over the years, I found that there was not a good comprehensive search engine for cruises. Maybe I could start one? Except I didn’t know anything about developing a search engine or even a web site for that matter. Perhaps I could just start a blog and then work the cruise search web site in sometime later. I thought long and hard about a blog name. I flew a lot of places on “planes,” and I found myself in a lot of “ports,” so I decided to name my blog Plane2Port. The “2” in the middle is a little corny, but the alternative was PlanetoPort, which looks like Planet o’ Port and that wouldn’t do. I bought the domain names cruisesearchengine.com and plane2port.com. I mothballed Cruise Search Engine with my web host and started out to see what I could do with Plane2Port.
My goal was to get comfortable with the blog before tacking the cruise search website. To say that the learning curve was steep would be a gross understatement. I didn’t even know how to take pictures off my phone and put them on a website. I learned all about photo resizing, how to put a hyperlink into text, and search engine optimization. I learned how you could do a lot with plug ins, but that everything on a website interferes with everything else and you are always troubleshooting. Even though it was a lot of work I was enjoying the process and my ego was being stroked by every rising numbers of page views.
After blogging for two years, I decided I needed to either GET ON with the Cruise Search Engine or else give up on the project and move on to something else. (There is actually a “something else” which I’ll talk about in my next blog post.) I changed my web site from just a single site to a multisite network of sites. This took several weeks. After this was completed I bought a premium theme to give the blog and the new web page a more polished look. The new theme wouldn’t work until I added security to my site. So I attached a security certificate and changed the domain prefix from “http” to “https.” This caused the traffic to my site to drop to zero because all the search engines couldn’t find any content under the new secure website.
Fixing Plane2Port Before I Work on Cruise Search Engine
So instead of writing blog posts I have been busy the last couple of weeks doing redirections of my old content to the new secure web site. It’s times like these that make me wonder why I’m even blogging. Since I’m not making any money off of the blog I don’t feel right paying for help, although if I continue I most certainly will need professional assistance. If there is one thing I’ve learned in all this is that I will never be doing any coding. So if I continue on this path I will need professional help at some point.
Thank you for letting me rant about my blogging frustrations. In my next post, I’ll talk about some new developments that promise to change my life, and this blog in a drastic way.