Organic Traffic

For the first time, my other blog has received organic traffic from AOL. This is both interesting and significant because I don't advertise at all through any of AOL's networks. I don't get a whole lot of traffic, but it's steady and worthy of consideration to monetize the blog. I haven't done so in the past because it doesn't cost me anything to keep the site up.

I really don't see why people are so obsessed about keyword ad buys and bidding on short- and long-tails for that 15% or so paid search traffic that will get them placed higher up on the food chain. SEO is a concept, a lot like modern day IT practices, where the concept has to adapt so rapidly to changing technologies that you have to have employ specialists to cope with such trends to stay ahead of competitors. I don't feel that it adds any value to a company's business model and it detracts from the resources necessary to generate positive net income. I can have this opinion because of the 89 visits (83 absolute unique visitors) to the food blog in the last 30 days (May 10 - June 9), 72 visits (80% of total traffic) were Google organic.

This means that people got to my site through natural means. Either because they saw a recipe I posted to a large recipe swapping/journalling community, or they had typed in keywords that match the keyword tagging that I use on my food site. I might have mentioned in a previous post that I dislike tags; it is only because people mistag articles, blogs, and RSS feeds all the time to redirect traffic to a misrepresentation of a tag's keywords.

For all the sites that I manage (2 blogs, 1 personal site, 1 game info site), I use Google Analytics, but I also have Stat Counter and ClusterMap on the ones where I know I will have international traffic. ClusterMap provides a wonderful display of frequency by location, representing website hit population by a visitor's IP address but at a bird's eye view.

This is where my international visitors came from (June '07 - May '08):

My two largest visitor populations are located in Florida and California. I have two recipes that generate consistent monthly traffic. Can you guess which ones? I'll give you a hint. One is a Cuban dessert recipe (majority of hits) that I was inspired to make from scratch after tasting it from Portos Bakery; the other is a Chinese appetizer (2nd most frequently visited posting) that is probably one of the priciest items you could order at a restaurant that has it. Both of these are made from basic (to that food culture) ingredients.

So, why do you suppose I have so much traffic from these two US states for that one Cuban recipe?
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