Chez Shaffner

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

How did you find this blog?

It’s always good to know how people come across your site, and whether they meant to get there or it was an algorithmic fluke.

Readers who maintain blogs or website know exactly what I’m talking about, but for the other ten of you, let me explain. Web servers track which searches led people to your pages, which browsers those people were using, and where in the world they were sitting when they got there (based on IP address).

If you don’t have access to the web server, Google can tell you the search results part. Their webmaster tools tell you whether the root of your site is indexed, allow you to upload a site map if it isn’t (in the form of an RSS, if you’ve got a blog), and find out what real searches return one of your pages (including which results page your link appears on). It’s pretty nifty.

From there, I learned that my pages come up high in searches for Harvard tailgate (2nd or 3rd page) and sorority rush 2006 ole miss (2nd page). That makes sense, although I have to admit I was surprised to see we ranked so high.

The search phrase that bowled me over was "nine guys from out of town nine beautiful spirits." Wow. There’s a whole story in those nine words, don’t you think? It’s so specific, ripe with sexual possibility and conflict. Where are the nine guys from? What are they doing here now? How did they come across their beautiful spirits? Will the nine men call those beautiful spirits back once they return home, or was it only a cheap fling? From those nine words alone, I feel serious empathy for the spirits.

Unfortunately, after running the search myself, I learned the answer was nothing quite so dramatic. As it turns out, a band called "Nine Guys From Out Of Town" released a CD entitled Nine Beautiful Spirits. Nice job on that title. Unfortunately, the tracks at CD Baby didn’t work on my machine, so I can’t offer an opinion on the actual music...

You’ll have to pardon today’s odd musing. Check out The Thrilling Travels of Normal Guy and Girl tonight for an in-depth Niagara Falls exposé.

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