Back in peak blog we had blog specific search engines, and Google tended to rate blogs very highly. For a few years anything I wrote would be on the first page of Google within hours. I once mentioned Britney Spears in a blog post, which combined with the "Disappointing people searching for Chris ODonnell naked" tagline put the words Britney Spears naked on my blog.
I was #3 or #4 on Google for "Britney Spears naked" for at least a few days after that post.
Google delivered a crazy amount of traffic to my blog back then. "Chris ODonnell naked" delivered hundreds of visitors every month for years. Granted, all those people were probably disappointed and left quickly, but they generated traffic which attracted advertisers which led to revenue.
Blogrolls and blog rings helped you find new blogs too. But comments left on your blog may have been the best place to discover new blogs. Somebody that bothered to leave an intelligent or humorous comment along with their URL was a good candidate to have an interesting blog you would want to add to your feed reader.
None of those things work today. Google doesn't index blogs highly, and you can't even see the search terms delivering traffic to your site unless you install Google Analytics on your site. I don't do that, not that it really matters since search engines don't deliver much traffic here anymore anyway. Blogrolls and rings don't exist, and nobody bothers with a comments section on their blogs anymore. If people want to comment on your blog post they'll make the comment on Twitter or Facebook.
So how do we find new blogs? Twitter seems to be the best bet as most bloggers are probably going to promote their posts on Twitter. Maybe we need to make an effort to hashtag blog posts with #blog. That way others can follow the hashtag for a constant stream of new blogs they may want to check out.
I'm definitely noticing a renewed interest in independent blogging, but we need a way to connect. Connecting was what drove the growth of blogs in the first place. Google powered a lot of that, but that won't work this time. If you have ideas shoot me an email at the link below. Or just let me know about your blog.