2019 Blog Review: 13 Years
My reflections and review of my blog for 2019, looking back on what changed this year and my goals for next year.
2019 was a big year for my blog. I finally migrated to a self-hosted site with my own domain, giving me more control. This year, I focused on writing new posts plus updating some older content.
Starting out in 2006
I started this blog in 2006 as a free wordpress.com blog. That was a great platform for me at the time. I was using my blog primarily as a tool for my own reflection and learning. Since I was a full-time employee, I wasn’t worried about establishing a “personal brand” or creating a professional site to attract clients.
In January, I migrated this site to christytuckerlearning.com. While I debated moving everything to my Syniad Learning site (my company website and portfolio), my personal name is much more well-known than my company name. Eventually, I may migrate my portfolio to be part of this site (rather than maintaining my portfolio separately on my company site).
Updating older posts
This is post #1,115 on my blog. Over 13 years, I have built up a massive archive of old posts. Some of those old posts haven’t held up well (predictions for elearning in 2008, anyone?). I have a ton of posts with curated links too, since I posted links almost daily until 2010.
However, some of my older posts continue to be very popular. This year, I’ve been focusing on updating those posts: removing broken links, sharing new resources, revising content, and adding additional content. I’m also slooooowly refreshing images and adding featured images to those older posts so the thumbnails appear correctly.
I’m currently writing a brand new post every other week (as I had been for the past few years). In the weeks between new posts, I update and republish something from the archive. Many of the republished posts have 40-50% new content, so the revisions often take as long as a new blog post.
I also know that many people haven’t seen those old posts, especially if they’re new subscribers. I want to continue to use and update that evergreen content.
This was one of the big advantages to moving to my own site: you can’t change the permalink structure on wordpress.com. All of my posts had a structure with the year/month/date like domain/2016/10/07post-title. If I had republished them with a new date, I would have broken all existing links to those posts. (Yes, I have redirects, but I’d rather not break links if I can help it.)
Now, my permalink structure is just domain/post-title. When I republish the posts, the URL stays the same.
Most popular posts
As has been the case in the past, my most popular posts overall are older posts (all these were all updated and republished this year).
- What Does an Instructional Designer Do?
- Instructional Design Hourly Rates and Salary
- Time Estimates for eLearning Development
- 30+ Ideas for eLearning Portfolio Samples
- Getting Into Instructional Design
Most popular new posts
These are my most popular posts from 2019.
- Articulate Rise Scenario Block Example
- Convert Training to Online
- Branch and Bottleneck Scenario Structure
- Microlearning: Short and Sweet
- Focus on What’s Important for Learning
In total, I published 50 posts this year: 23 new posts, 19 updated posts, and 8 curated link posts.
According to my time tracking, I spent about 132 hours on my blog in 2019. It’s a significant investment of time and effort, but it still feels worth it to me. I don’t feel like I’ve run out of things to say, even after 1100 posts.
For next year, I want to continue with the discipline of posting every Tuesday, whether that’s a new post or an updated post. I still have a lot of good content in my archive that could use refreshing.
I have a few design tweaks I’d like to make to my blog next year. Switching to the magazine style format was a big change this year, but I’d like to refine it a bit next year to improve the usability in a few spots.
I also want to do some other “housekeeping” on the blog, adding images and cleaning up more of the broken links in old posts.
In the long run, I’d like to have some courses or products to sell. I want to diversify my business. I love the client work, but I spend so much time making training for clients that I don’t spend the time on my own projects. That’s the next big step I see for both my business and my blog though.
Thanks for reading my blog and coming along this journey with me. I truly appreciate all the comments, emails, messages, and shares.