Monday, 25 May 2015

When Blogging Goes Bad!


On Wednesday night/Thursday morning, around 3am, I almost deleted my blog! The picture above represents perfectly how I felt at that moment.

Around 10pm Wednesday night, I was happily scrolling through my Twitter feed, not a care in the world, when one of my pre-scheduled tweets for the day's new post happened to pop up. Bear in mind this tweet, or a variation of it, had been going out once an hour since 10am. Something looked weird about it, and as I looked I realised to my horror the link to the post was wrong!
Through the day I had noticed the views the post was getting were a lot less than a new post normally gets, but I put it down to the fact the post was a reflection piece on the A to Z challenge I had just completed - maybe it was only of interest to other people who had completed the challenge? My other posts were getting viewed so I hadn't been overly worried. It didn't even occur to me to check the link I was posting - talk about a rookie mistake!
After the initial shouting, swearing and generally morphing into a crazy person, I took a deep breath sent out a couple of frantic tweets explaining what had happened and told myself it couldn't get any worse. I didn't know the universe was going to take that as a challenge!
I've hearing a lot recently about Google Analytics and been meaning to give it a try. I figured now was a good a time as any - maybe I would get some useful insights as to how badly the link issue had affected the day!
I went off and looked into it. I wasn't prepared for how much of a mammoth task it was going to be. Seriously, if you're blog is still relatively new, and you think there's even the tiniest chance you might want to use this feature in the future, I would highly recommend you start now.
The site generates a bit of code which, unless you are a confident enough web designer to embed this in the mainframe of the website, (which I am not so much can go wrong fiddling about with this if you are not 100% sure of what you are doing) you then need to go paste the bit of code into every single blog post and every single page.
As it's now getting on for 1am, I had nothing better to do so off I went, on my pasting journey. Now for most of my posts and all of my pages, this was uneventful - edit, HTML, paste, update, move on. A little boring, but simple enough.
However, for around 10 posts (I still don't know why these were different, or what happened) pasting in the code somehow made my blog decide these were new posts, which had to be displayed right at the top of my blog with a time code that said they had just been published! And of course, they had to be the oldest posts, some of them about topical things that are by now three months out of date!
Luckily, of all the posts this happened to, only one had comments on (if someone has taken the time to write a comment, deleting that post seems awfully rude) and they were so old, they probably bore no relevance to my blog today. So I deleted them. It wasn't something I wanted to do and I was unhappy about it to say the least, but needs must I suppose.
So code added, old posts deleted I eagerly went off to check my analysis - and it hadn't worked. The last two hours of pasting in code had all been in vain, I had deleted posts for nothing! It just wasn't worth it! It was the final straw in a day of blogging mishaps, and I went back to my blog with the full intention of deleting it altogether and putting the whole blogging thing down to experience - I figured if that many things went wrong all at once, I clearly wasn't cut out for this. I was over it and I was done with it!
Something stopped me - I don't know what, maybe the thought of all the hours of work that went into it, maybe the fact that analysing my stats wasn't that big a deal, I'm not sure, but I decided to close down, and if I still felt the same way the next morning I would delete it then and not look back.
 
 
Thursday morning came around, and I had had a change of heart. I put on my big girl pants, and gave myself a right good talking to. I'm not one for spitting my dummy out, and in that moment I didn't like how easily I was willing to quit (I'm detoxing this week, so maybe it was lack of carbs and sugar making me a bit irritable?).
I decided to pop back to Google Analytics, and see if I had missed any steps, if not, I would delete the code from all the posts and live without the stats!
I opened the site, and lo and behold, there it was - my first report. Somehow I had managed to miss the part where it says the first report can take up to 24 hours to generate! I'm glad I added the analytics and I would recommend it if you just want an in depth look at the demographic of your readers. But I urge you to read it all properly first!
I really can't believe how close I came to throwing in the towel because of a few set backs. I'm glad the rational part of mind eventually put in an appearance and stopped me deleting it - I how would have been gutted Thursday morning if I'd have gone through with it.
 
So what have I learned from this?
 
1. Sometimes, you are going to have days like this one. When it gets to the point where you are this angry, nothing is going to go right, and the smallest thing will feel like the end of the world. Walk away. Switch the computer off and don't go back until you are in a better frame of mind.
2. Never give up! In the moment, you will want to - that feeling won't last forever, just wait it out!
3. Never make decisions in anger! I already knew this one, but that night sure brought it home to me!
 
 
Sometimes, you just have to remember my favourite saying - worse things happen at sea!
 

 
Have you had a day like this? How did you overcome it?
 
Follow me on Twitter @randommusings29 and feel free to comment :)

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57 comments:

  1. I can understand your sense of panic and frustration. I try not to mess with things on my blog as much as possible for fear of screwing something up. I'm not totally sure if I have Analytics on my blog--I thought I did--at least I have some kind of stats to which to refer.

    Good luck with your future blogging. Be careful!

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Road trippin' with A to Z
    Tossing It Out

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    1. I have well and truly learned my lesson - I'm not messing with anything I don't completely understand again! Thanks so much for stopping by. I'm doing the road trip too so I'm sure we will cross paths again somewhere along the way :)

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  2. Thanks for visiting me on the A to Z Road Trip! I was about to find your A to Z posts when this one caught my attention. Yikes, it sounds like you had an unpleasant experience! I've had similar issues, though not as extreme, lol. I was trying to go back and put tags on my posts and for whatever reason, one of them went back up with the current date instead of the original, and I went into a near panic! Then, I tried the Schedule section and it let me reset it back to the correct older date, which I knew because it was one of my A to Z posts. So, I agree that it can be quite scary to make adjustments with the technical elements of blog posts!

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    1. I wish I had known that it was possible to move them back! I'm laughing about the whole experience now but at the time I was mortified! I've learned my lesson and I'm going to make sure I know exactly what I'm doing before I start next time. Thanks for stopping by :)

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  3. Oh, yessss, I know how you feel. I coped with it by writing a blog post! and getting lots of helpful comments. I recommend you read it (and them) here:
    http://genwestuk.blogspot.co.uk/2014/12/genealogy-do-over-reset-this-blog.html
    I have since (apart from being ill and then being in a plaster cast) still not felt 100% excited at the prospect of writing another post. So I have thrown myself into other projects. Now, at your recommendation, I will look into Google Analytics.

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    1. I will have a look, thanks for sharing. Hope you are feeling better now! Thank you for stopping by :)

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  4. Glad you didn't give up and delete your blog. #Twinkly Tuesday

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    1. Me too! Thank you for stopping by :)

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  5. Ouch! Fortunately for me my blogger blog was on a template where all I needed to do was post the code in the section of Tools > Other (at the bottom).

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    1. I daren't even try that now lol! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  6. Oh yes I have definitely thought about packing it all in on more than one occasion... But in truth I know how much I would miss it. I don't get too bogged down in stats these days because on the whole my blog is doing ok, and because even if no one is reading it, I enjoy writing it! Sorry you had so many things go wrong at once, I totally understand your frustration! Xx #allaboutyou

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    1. I would have regretted it as soon as I had did it. I'm so glad I didn't, I'd be lost without it! I don't worry too much about stats, just I'd seen some good stuff about it and I thought it would be interesting to see a break down of new/returning visitors things like that. Thank you :)

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  7. Blogging is a labour of love and it surely feels awful when that goes bad. Thanks for visiting me on the A to Z Road trip. Take care. Best wishes.

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    1. It was a horrible feeling! But we live and learn, and I've definitely learned to not poke about with things until I'm certain I know what I'm doing! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  8. I understand your pain. I've had moments where things have gone so wrong that it can feel so upsetting. I had a permalink disaster a month back. I'm going to write a post about the lessons learned. If we don't go through these situations, we wont improve or grow. That's for sure. Angela xx

    Angela recently posted. "A FATHER’S DAY CAKE FOR EVERY FATHER- WHICH ONE ARE YOU? http://wp.me/p5XRN6-1u6

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    1. That's true Angela, what doesn't kill our blogs makes them stronger :) I hate permalinks! Looking forward to reading your post :)

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  9. Oh, no! I hate messing with the code! Makes me break into a nervous sweat every time. Glad it all worked out :)

    @ShonnaSlayton from
    Shonna Slayton YA Writer - Blogged the 1940’s from A to Z and now on the road trip

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    1. Thank you and thanks for stopping by 😊

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  10. Hi,
    I have had more than one day like that. They usually happen when I plan to do something quick on the computer like an update of a software program, thinking that it will take me only a few minutes and I am still updating 2 hours later. I do my own computer maintenance because I love knowing what's happening with my MacBook. Recently it kept crashing. I would be in the middle of a document and it would crash. Good thing I use Microsoft office and have it so that I have an automatic backup of each document. Well, anyway, I needed a new graphic card. That I did not try to do, because I would have pulled all my hair out.
    So I understand you completely.
    Dropping in from the A to Z Road Trip.
    Have a great day.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

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    1. The dreaded updates! You are so right they always take forever when you're in a rush to close down. I wouldn't even attempt a graphics card there's so much could go wrong!
      Thanks for stopping by :)

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  11. Oh I hate that, HTML code is tricky at the best of times.... and the fact everything is real time, just adds to the frustration... Might be worth asking around next time as I know there's an easier way with Wordpress how you can just put the one code in the back in rather than each post :-/

    Great that you gave yourself a next day pep talk and your blog continues though... :-)

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    1. HTML is my nemesis! Although I am getting better at it (touch wood) managed to install SumoMe without breaking anything :)
      I think there is a way to do that but I stupidly thought the copy paste route had less room for error!
      Thanks for stopping by :)

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  12. Ahhh, I can so sympathise. The other day I managed to delete all of the images from my blog (I deleted the image library to create more space on my blog). I then spent the rest of the evening reinstating everything.

    I tried copying and pasting the extra google analytics code onto every post, but it didn't seem to make much difference to the stats that I got back.

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    1. Oh no! It must have taken ages to put them all back! I feel your pain!
      It's weird because the page views on Google and Blogger are always totally different for the same day, never know which one to believe now lol. Thanks for stopping by :)

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  13. Oh my, I think I would have given up and tried again the next day! I hate it when things that this happen as it has on a regular basis with my blog now and again! Thanks for linking up to the #BinkyLinky

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    1. There's nothing worse than that sinking feeling you get when it all goes wrong is there! Thank you for hosting :)

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  14. I'd like to believe blogger but Google analytics is more accurate! Though I went with pasting in code, or in layout or settings. Or somewhere not too scary! But it makes me shout at the laptop each time I mess with it!

    Thanks for linking up with #effitfriday

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    1. I would like to believe blogger as well, usually a fair few more than Google. oh well never mind :) I said I'm done messing with it but only time will tell lol! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  15. I get what you felt! I had done some messing about when i was in my early stages in my blog and almost deleted it then! Thank you for linking on #effitfriday

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    1. Never again! I've definitely learned my lesson! Thanks for hosting :)

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  16. That sounds terribly frustrating! I work in IT and had never really thought about how overwhelming it must feel for someone who isn't familiar with code to make tweaks to their blog. I actually made the switch from Blogger to WordPress because I felt that Blogger tried to hold my hand TOO much and didn't let me tinker enough with the code! Glad you decided to stick around in the blogosphere!

    #Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday.

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    1. I imagine working in IT makes playing with your blog feel like child's play. Wow, I would be no good at all on WordPress then lol, I love Blogger because it's so simple (in theory anyway!) I thought I was fairly tech savvy until I started playing around with coding! Thank you, and thanks for hosting :)

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  17. It's such a pain when things go wrong and then you are not sure how to put it right it frustrates me I know that thanks for linking to the Binkylinky

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    1. I always thought anything I did I could undo, but it seems I was way wrong! Thanks for hosting :)

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  18. I can relate way too much here to this. I am constantly trying to tweek and change things on my blog and its always going wrong for me. lol It can be so frustrating can't it? Thanks for linking up to Share With Me I hope you are enjoying my blog hop and thanks for all the linky support! #sharewithme

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    1. It's enough to drive you mad when it all goes wrong! Thank you for hosting, I am enjoying it, and you're welcome :)

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  19. I often debate whether to just delete my blog. Some weeks i love it and some weeks i don't. I don't have Google Analytics because i don't want to stress myself over stats. I have some kind of wordpress stats which to me are good enough to check on every now and then. #sundaystars

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    1. That's the only time I've ever even considered deleting it. I love blogging, I think it was more just frustration. I know a few bloggers who have a love/hate relationship with their blogs though! I don't stress over the numbers, I'm just a bit of a numbers geek so I like to have a look. I don't let it affect what I post too much though! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  20. Don't give up!
    I don't look at stats. I just enjoy knowing that people are stopping by. But, I am impressed that you spent the time figuring out the coding!

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  21. Don't give up!
    I don't look at stats. I just enjoy knowing that people are stopping by. But, I am impressed that you spent the time figuring out the coding!

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    1. I don't worry unduly over stats, primarily I blog because I enjoy it. I'm just a bit of a numbers geek so I like to have a look just to see how I'm doing. I got there in the end lol! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  22. I use google analytics but I am really such novice that not even sure I set it up right. Reading this though has inspired me to, like you, put my big girl pants on and get back on it, I know it will be a good tool to use. Thanks for the tips and glad you got it all sorted in the end.

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    1. It's a good insight to your readers demographics. I learned that a lot (almost 40%) of my readers are American and most of my tweets were going out between 10am and midnight UK time which meant they would be missing a lot of them so I changed my tweet schedule around a bit. Thank you :)

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  23. oh no! I've had these days and they suck. I try not to get bogged down in stats or you could quit all the time. I don't think you need to paste the code in every page?? I have blogger and it took me 5 seconds. Tweet me if you need help!! Thanks so much for linking up to #bestandworst and see you again!

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    1. I don't let the stats affect me that much, I just like to have a nosey see how posts do in comparison to others, stuff like that. I think I've sorted it now, just having one of those days! Thanks anyway though :) Thank you for hosting!

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  24. Arghh! I would've had a bit of a melt down, I hate fiddling around with things and worrying that it hasn't worked. I have analytics installed and really love seeing what people are looking at! Glad that it all worked out ok and thanks for linking up to the #bestandworst and hope to see you again next week!

    Helen X

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    1. It pushed me to look a little more into coding. I'm still nervous playing around but I feel like I have a slightly better understanding now - I'm still no web designer but at least I have an idea how to undo things now if it goes wrong! Thank you for hosting :) x

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  25. This is where I'm glad for the other member of the Mum's The Law team! Wes is so, so much better at this stuff than I am - so I let him deal with all of the technical side of the coding. I can make things look pretty (and sometimes break them) but that's as far as I can help with that sort of stuff! Our numbers aren't particularly impressive yet though, haha!

    Glad you had your change of heart though! Would have missed this place! #bestandworst

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    1. I think I need my own personal tech support team lol! Thank you so much :)

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  26. i feel your pain!! I've considered deleting so many times, and had to give myself a good talking to. I nearly deleted because I was getting stressed out that it wasn't 'successful' enough (its less than a month old!) but realised - hey, it's just a hobby. Good on you for keeping your cool and not hitting delete #bestandworst

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    1. Don't get disheartened - I know everyone says it, but it does take time to build up your readership. As long as you enjoy writing it, that's the main thing! I'm so glad I didn't I'd be lost without it now!

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  27. I completely understand. I am constantly checking for new followers, and my stats, or if anyone has yet linked up with my new linky (it's been one day) and it is enough to drive a person mad worrying about it all!! I will not give up though! I do sometimes take a day or two off when I get a little frustrated, so I don't get to the breaking point! :)
    -Tania (www.mommy-from-the-park.com)

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    1. Sometimes it makes you want to scream - I daren't take time out when I feel like that though I'm always scared I won't come back!

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  28. I ended up getting someone to install stuff for me as the few times I've tried to do it, it's been so stressful and as I fixed one thing, I broke something else. Knowing your limitations is important. As is knowing when to do something else. #blogstorm

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    1. I know refuse to play with any coding without checking Google for instructions first lol. Yes you're right, knowing your limits is rally important. Thanks for hosting :)

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  29. The weird thing here is that ive read this post and know I've commented before. But where is it? :/
    I did exactly the same around the same time as you. I actually deleted everything and was in floods of tears at 2am. Saying that I found my back up. Phew. And it was all because I'd fiddled with code. Google analytics is cool but there's things about it taht make it rubbish. I might do a post on it actually. I like to think I'm in the middle of blogger and analytics. Although interesting though my blog is still climbing in viewings on both and that's the main thing. #blogstorm

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    1. Oh that is weird, I didn't delete your comment! It was probably all part of the cursed day I had!
      Oh my, if I deleted everything I would have done the same! To be honest after the fuss to get it installed I hardly check it now. I thought it was great at first but I don't feel its that accurate s lot of the time.
      Give me a yell if you do a post on it! Yes moving in the right direction is definitely the main thing! Thanks for hosting :)

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