New Changes to This Blog

On September 9, 2014

I've made new changes to this blog. Some are important ones and I want to share with you the reasons for making these changes. Most of these changes are to make this blog more simple and easy to use.

So, I'll start with the most important one.

New Blog Name


When I started blogging I used my own name as the title for this blog. Later I changed the blog name to 'learn, create, be your own startup.' I still like that name, but it's too long and doesn't match the site URL. When a site URL and name don't match it's confusing. You've to do the extra work to remember the URL.

I like everything in my life to be simple, and I think I broke my own rule by using a different site name and different url name for this blog.

So starting now I'll simply call this site as singhrahul.com - it's short and easy to remember. Earlier most readers entered the site name, saw google results for the page, and then came to this site. Now most new visitors can easily remember the site name and use it to come directly to this site. No confusion at all.

Also, your emails or rss feed may start showing 'singhrahul.com' as the sender instead of the earlier 'learn, create, be your own startup.' Please remember it's the same blog, just the name has changed.

I have also updated my about page to let new readers know what type of articles I write on this blog.

Responsive Design


For some reason, I never got excited about responsive design. I don't think a smartphone provides the same reading experience as a laptop/computer does. Also, I don't own a smartphone as I think it unnecessarily complicates my simple life.

I believed if readers want to read my site on a smartphone, they can zoom it and read my site. But few days back when I looked into my google analytics account I became concerned about my readers who use mobile phones to read this site.

Here is the total number of visits for last month based on device type:


As you can see almost one-third of the readers use a mobile to read this site. I compared this to the same month, last year, and then there were only 17% readers who did so. The number of mobile users to this site have increased more than I expected. That alone makes it worth the effort to make this site responsive.

But there is also another reason I delayed making this site responsive; I know very little about CSS. Although I keep tweaking the CSS of this blog to make minor design changes, I thought making a responsive site will need more than that.

Few days back I just decided to try it on my own, and was actually able to make this site fully responsive in six hours, thanks to google and trying a few things on my own.

I wish I had done this earlier. Now the site works at all screen resolutions, and I couldn't be happier.

Social Sharing Links Without Javascript


I always had social sharing buttons on my site. Having them on your site makes it easier for others to share your content. But all these social sharing buttons load additional javascript code which slows down your site, and I don't think they add much value to the readers.

You can easily allow your readers to share your content on these networks even without using social sharing buttons. You can do so by using simple links or buttons that don't load any extra content. In case you are interested in doing this for your site, you can read this article by Scott Hanselman.

So now I have text links on bottom of every page, and you can use them to share my posts. And the site loads faster than before.

No Affiliate Banners


Few months back I started using affiliate banners on my site, in sidebar area. But just because you have beautiful banners on your site doesn't mean your site visitors will sign up or buy those products. That's not how affiliate marketing works. I wish I knew that earlier.

Bloggers who earn good money with affiliate marketing do so because they write posts about the affiliate products and try to sell them to their users in every post.

I can never do that.

How can I tell you to try a product or buy it when I haven't tried it myself. I knew I was never going to promote those products to you in my blog articles. You trust me with your attention when you read my posts, and trying to hard sell you those products is breaking that trust, which I can't do. So I gave up those affiliate banners.

Sometimes, I do link to books on amazon using my affiliate link. But I do that only when I've read the book myself, and am sure that it'll help you too.

Also I use any banners or ads only in the web pages. I've never used them in my emails or rss. I use ads on my site because it helps me earn something from the search traffic I get on this blog. But even then, I keep these ads separate from my content. Readers come to a site to read the content first, and then, if they like, view those ads or respond to them. It shouldn't be the other way around.

So, those are the new changes to this blog.

Thank you for your time. I hope this new changes make it easier for you to use this site.

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