I was hopeful that I might squeeze in some visits to Kansas lensmasters while I was there all of April. Unfortunately it didn’t work out, but I’m keeping it in mind for my next trip to my native state, probably in October. The month started with a sad event, the hospitalization and loss of my 87 year old father. I was glad to be there to help plan the celebration of life event and to assist my mother and sisters with the myriad responsibilities that follow a death.
The month ended on a happier note with the wedding of a niece. She’s a librarian in Kansas City and used a book theme throughout the wedding and reception. Quite a treat, and it inspired me to make a Squidoo lens about ideas for A Librarian’s Wedding.
The first few months on Squidoo, I didn’t put much effort into getting the word out about the Squidoo lenses I was making. So far, it’s been such fun making new ones without worrying about if anyone actually saw them or not. Since many of them are pretty specialized topics, they aren’t designed for mass consumption.
Now I have started looking at finding the targeted audience. The lens on Small Town Kansas: Hamilton seemed a natural to post on the Get Hamilton group on Facebook. There are only 102 fans signed up for the group, but obviously they’re motivated to go to a website on Hamilton. So I put in my plug and link to my Small Town Kansas: Hamilton lens on Squidoo. When I did that on January 25, 2010, the lens was ranked 158,662 on Squidoo. Way down in the rankings. After ten days, I checked it again and was delighted to see it had risen to 16,889.
Only two people had rated the lens (with the stars at the top) but you have to be signed in as a Squidoo member for that. My mom was kind enough to put a comment at the bottom. Most casual viewers don’t bother, even though I set it so non-members can leave comments. I was hoping I’d get comments that would help me expand the content of the lens.
Anyway, my little experiment shows that finding a motivated group, even a small one, can result in viewers for a lens and a boost to its lens ranking.
It’s interesting to see how people end up at my website about Sugar Valley Lakes. Here are the stats from that site showing the keywords. Obviously Google is doing a good job for me as most of the searches came through that search engine.
Visits = the number of people to land on your lens. Find out how to get more!
Pageviews – the total number of times your lens has been viewed by visitors.
Visits this period: 87 visits Pageviews this period: 110 pageviews Pages/visit: 1.26 Lifetime visits: 91
Referral traffic comes from blogs, websites, forums and other lenses.
Direct traffic comes from browser bookmarks or typing in your URL.
Search traffic comes from people searching for a specific topic in engines like Google, Yahoo, AOL, etc.
Disovery traffic comes from Squidoo’s Discover (aka “Related Pages”) tool.
sugar valley lakes
sugar valley lake kansas
sugar valley lake
lake homes for sale sugar valley lake mound city, kansas +
Just a a few weeks ago, I launched a new effort to promote a lake lot that we wanted to sell. I created a Squidoo lens to show it off, posted photos of the lake and lot on Facebook and Webshots and wrote a couple of blog entries about it. I’m not sure what did the trick, but we got an offer last week for the lot and the sale was completed yesterday.
If you missed out on our lot, I’m sure there are a few left around Sugar Valley Lakes, just south of Kansas City.
For now, all we have at Sugar Valley Lake is a prairie lot (not on the lake). The prairie lots sell for very modest prices and allow the owners to use all the amenities of the Sugar Valley Lakes resort. That means you can become a member of the golf course, launch a boat to fish or water ski on the lake, use the tennis courts, pool, etc.
Our prairie lot is on raccoon drive and includes a stand of trees. Most of the prairie lots are just grasslands, so ours is a bit special. You could camp on it with an RV or tent while enjoying weekends at the lake. The taxes on it are only $5 a year, and the annual fee for the resort is several hundred dollars. If you live in the south-central Kansas area, it’s a modest cost for the amount of recreation you can enjoy there. If you like to fish or boat or golf, then call me at 863-427-2830 for more details about this prairie lot. It’s available for the very reasonable cost of $250. I want to have it sold by Christmas time.
Note the power lines running by the lot (upper part of picture). It wouldn’t be a big job to get linked up and have power at your site.
I just love photographs of the Flint Hills. Many times I’ve tried to capture their rolling contours, but they just seem to flatten out in the photograph. Here Jim Richardson has captured a thunderstorm with his camera. Just click on the picture to see it larger.
On Squidoo, I’ve created a lens with lots of information about the Flint Hills. Check it out. I made another one about Teterville, Kansas. There used to be a community there in the 1920s and 1930s, but it’s gone now.
(Update: 1/27/2010 – our lake lot is sold. If you have a Sugar Valley Lakes lot to sell or want to buy one, go to this site. You can post information about the lot you want to sell or find out more about Sugar Valley Lakes and the area.)
Some years ago, we bought a lake lot at this Kansas resort community near Mound City, south of Kansas City. The idea was that eventually we would build a cottage there and enjoy summers by the lake.
They have a 9-hole golf course there that starts out rather flatly but turns dramatic with one hole in particular. It has an elevated tee area and your drive has to carry over water to a landing area. Then you jump in the golf cart and head down the steep hill, hoping that the brakes are good. Zoom across a bridge and then up a steep hill to where hopefully your ball has landed. Now the second shot is from this elevated area across to an elevated green. Again you have to carry across water. For me this hole was beyond challenging and could be described as downright scary. My husband really liked that hole, but then he’s a much better golfer than I am. My ball usually ended up in the water at least once on this hole and sometimes twice.
Our lot is on the biggest lake of the lakes at Sugar Valley. It slopes down to the water and would be a good building lot. Very few of those are left on this lake as there are quite a few houses already in place. It’s a popular place for full-time retirees and weekenders. It’s a good family place with the boating, nature walks, a pool up by the clubhouse, tennis courts and lots of community pot luck dinners at the clubhouse.
Sigh… we never did build the cabin or spend summers by the lake. Now, we live in Florida and are lucky to make it out to Kansas for a family visit a couple of times a year. Consequently, we’re looking to sell this lake lot to someone who will make use of it.
If that appeals to you, I’ve posted a photo gallery showing the lot, the lake, some of the golf course and some Kansas nature scenes. Ideally you are in Kansas or nearby in Missouri and can drive over to scope out the community. I recommend that, and hope you like it as much as we did.