You have heard a lot on this blog about my cocktail making and paper airplanes websites. I also created a site on butterfly tattoos in 2003 after a friend at university said it was really hard to find ideas for tattoos. I set up the site as a sub directory on cocktailmaking.co.uk/butterflytattoos. It was a typical site for me, a seed of content from me and then all user generated content with users uploading their own photos of Tattoos. Of course now I see how small I was thinking back when I launched this since less than a year later Zuck, Dustin, Chris et. al. launched facebook ;) but I was proud of it and still am.
I rapidly optimized the site into the top 10 results for “butterfly tattoos” and then to #1 in UK and #3 in US. As you can see from this graph comparing butterfly tattoo search volume to cocktail recipes search volume it’s a reasonably big term.
The traffic also was really promising. The below graph shows the traffic on this site over time reaching a peak (and looking like it was still growing rapidly) in January-February 2006.
At that time I had just left the UK and started my first job in silicon valley and I took my eye off the ball. Universal search became more and more important so all the traffic that was coming from a raw ranking started to leach to images.google.com results and the traffic collapsed. At the end of 2007 (just before I started at Facebook) I decided to revive the site again. It has a lot of links and as you can see a little traffic too so I did a bit of work and started to revive it but then I joined Facebook and the impact of having a really hard job with high focus long hours and no days off in a week was pretty clear:
So zoom forward to today. My weekends are gradually becoming my own again (although I was still in the office all day Saturday) and I am playing around with my sites (as you can probably tell from reading this). So I am going to give it another try. I have migrated the site to onlinetattoodesigns.co.uk (so that if it recovers I can give it a broader scope) and create a sitemap, google verified, 301’d everything across and so on… initially I lost all my google rankings and traffic dropped still further but in the last week traffic has been growing. Maybe I have found a way to finally turn that corner and I’ll have a third great site on my list. Here’s hoping and below is the daily page views for the last month and a bit: