Vandelay Design's Best of 2007

This blog launched in March of 2007 and began posting consistently in July. It has seen much more success than I initially anticipated, and that constantly motivates me to keep improving. Thank you to everyone that has found this blog at some point and kept on reading. I know most of you were not around for many of the earlier posts, so in case you missed something, here is a collection of the best work of 2007.

I hope that 2008 brings even more success, and I know for that to happen I need to focus on meeting the needs of readers. With that in mind, please leave a comment to let me know what topics you would like to read about in the coming months. Also, if you are a reader but not typically a commenter, I would love to hear from you. I occasionally get emails from people who tell me they’ve been reading for a long time but never commented. It’s nice to know a little bit more about readers, so please consider taking a moment to introduce yourself.

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StumbleUpon: Interesting Results Examined

Last week I published a post that did pretty well with a few social media sites, but I saw some interesting results from StumbleUpon that I thought were worth sharing. I normally don’t send pages to my StumbleUpon friends through the SU toolbar to ask for a thumbs up, but I did for this post and it seems like that may have restricted the amount of traffic the post received from SU.

To look at the situation I’m going to compare the stats from that post to stats from another post that had similar success with social media last month. Both posts received very similar traffic from DZone, del.icio.us, popurls, and CSS Globe.

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Networking for Bloggers: 8 Keys to Making Yourself More Valuable to Others

For bloggers and website owners building a strong network is crucial. In order to be a great networker, you need to make yourself valuable for others. Fortunately, there are many ways to do so, even if you are brand new to blogging and internet marketing.

8 Keys to Making Yourself Valuable:

Know Your Role

Know what you have to offer, and how you can help others. Try to look at yourself from the perspective of others. What would they want from you? Go a step further and think about what you have to offer that others may not even know about. Focus on fulfilling your role, and doing what you do to the best of your ability.

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Viewing Your Website as an Asset

Most people view internet businesses as a hobby or interest while a more traditional (offline) business is taken more seriously. Anyone who has built a successful online business knows that it needs to be treated like any other business, with respect.

Sometimes those of us who are building businesses online tend to overlook all of the assets that we are building. However, just because something is an asset doesn’t mean that it could or should be sold. An asset is valuable because it helps the business to grow and succeed.

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10 Tools for Researching Domain Names

If you are planning to start a new website and buy a domain name you will probably need to do some research on any domains that you are considering. This article does not focus on finding the right domain name, but rather the research that should be done once you’ve found a domain that you want to use.

The domain name that you purchase may or may not have a history, and that is what you need to know about. It’s possible that the domain has been penalized by Google or other search engines for the practices of previous owners, which is certainly something that you will want to avoid. A domain with a negative history can carry over when you start hosting your site on that domain.

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Returning to NoFollow

As some of you know this blog has been using the DoFollow plugin for several months to remove the nofollow tags on links to those who leave comments. The decision was originally made to encourage reader participation and to give something back to those who take the time to leave their feedback. The DoFollow status was never really promoted, so I am not sure how much of an influence it was to potential commenters.

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9 Ways to Gauge Your Visitors' Experience

Measuring tapeOne of the most important factors in the success of a website is the visitors’ opinions and experiences. A site that is liked by visitors will typically be successful, while those that aren’t liked by visitors will struggle. A challenge that all website owners face is determining how visitors feel about their experience on the site. In most cases you won’t have the option to speak directly with visitors to get their opinions.

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22 Resources to Easily Create CSS Layouts

Web designers are always looking for ways to save time and simplify the design process. Well, creating a basic layout doesn’t have to take any time at all. All of the resources listed here will help you to create the structure for CSS-based designs. None of these resources are templates that attempt to replace the need for a design; rather, they all aim to simplify the process by creating a skeleton that you will build upon.

Layout Gala – 40 different CSS-based layouts including fixed and fluid widths.

Layout Gala Screenshot

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