Usually every year on my birthday, I’ll sit down with a glass of wine, go through my journal and reminisce about everything that happened in the previous 365 days. I’ll look over my goals, celebrating those I accomplished and taking note of the ones I didn’t.
But my birthday was last month, so why am I bringing it up today? It’s been exactly one year since I relaunched SailingBo.com with an entry titled “Start Here”. Before that, it had existed solely as a log of the 2004 Gulf Sailing Trip I made as a junior in college.
This time last year, I was about to start my fourth season in my dream job. I’d just announced that it would be my last season before leaving in January to pursue other dreams. Since then, this blog has seen me make a cross-country road trip from Alabama to Arizona to watch Auburn win the BCS National Championship Game, check numerous things off my Bucket List, get my sister engaged, and explain why I’m not.
This site has gotten me a few steps closer to my dream of sailing around the world, and above all, it’s helped me form relationships with some amazing people.
As any good year-in-review post should, I’d like to include a few of the high points from the past 365 days…
- SailingBo.com Relaunched on July 26, 2010 with 6 posts, an “About” page and my “Life List” (which I later re-title as my “Bucket List”). Today there are 43 posts and 220 comments.
- Within the first 4 weeks, over 1200 visitors from 45 countries had visited the site.
- June 11, 2011 a slightly slimmer, modified site design was unveiled with Bethany Heck’s help.
- In the last 12 months, almost 10,000 visitors from 74 countries have visited.
- Over 25% of traffic came from people physically typing “sailingbo.com” into their browser, 20% came from Facebook, 12% from Twitter and 10% from Stumbleupon.
- The single most popular post was “My View from the Control Room” when 1,005 people visited in a 2 day period.
- The post my Dad thinks was my best ever was Perfection is overrated and how you shouldn’t be afraid to live an interesting life on purpose.
- And the post that scared me the most when I hit “Publish” was, without a doubt, Songs, letters & how it’s ok when things don’t turn out like you think they will.
And a few goals for next year…
- Get over 25k visitors to the site.
- Grow the number of people subscribed to email updates to 1,000 (currently just under 100).
- Complete the MatadorU Travel Writing Class, with most of the assignments being posted here.
- And most of all, buy a boat and begin a round-the-world sailing adventure!
Whether you’re a first time visitor or one of the people who checks the site every few days and emails me complaining when I haven’t posted often enough, I want to say thank you for the support & encourage you give me every single day.