Archive for May, 2007

My Dodge Viper Arrived!

Cross it off my dream cars to own list, I have officially bought my first Dodge Viper. After dealing with shipping companies for a week and a half, I finally found a good one to deal with. The car arrived in perfect shape, in just one day from being picked up in upstate NY. It was brought on an open trailer with just my car on it:

My Dodge Viper Arrives

The car JUST clears the ramps:

Not much clearance for a Dodge Viper getting off a trailer

And finally she is officially here:

Here is my new Dodge Viper

I absolutely can’t stand the wheels, they make the car look like it came out of the 80′s (even though it’s not that far away). First thing to do was to swap the wheels with my buddies old wheels:

Changed Dodge Viper wheels to GTS wheels

These wheels are from a newer model GTS Viper, they aren’t insane, but they make the car look about 10 years newer. I’d like to get some nice aftermarket ones, and I will be on the lookout for something used. New aftermarket wheels that fit the Viper normally start at about $5,000 with tires and go to about $9,000 for the stuff that I like.

Here’s a shot under the hood, this Viper has a 400hp V10 motor:

Under the hood of the Dodge Viper

Here is my Viper and my roommates Viper parked next to each other in the garage:

Both Dodge Vipers in the garage

I ended up getting a really great deal, and got a spectacular car considering it is 13 years old. It only has 14,729 miles on it! What are you doing about crossing items off your life to-do list?

What’s Next In Computing From Microsoft?

Microsoft gave a sneak peak at the future of computing at Convergence 07, as Engadget reported.

“the so-called DigiDesk does indeed incorporate many features we’ve seen before, including a multi-touch display (we know, we know), document digitizer, speech recognition engine, and ability to resize objects on the fly”

Watch the video of Microsoft demonstrating:

The major “cool” thing with this is all about integration and productivity. I love how all of the systems are tied together, where suppliers are pumped into your systems, and you are pumped into theirs. If you change anything, the system adjusts everything all-around.

The whole setup and way it works seems great, but I can’t imagine what it would take to set something like that up. Between integrating it into your own systems and working with your various suppliers, vendors, customers, etc to get into their systems, it sounds like there will be a lot of cost involved.

From a new business perspective, this can lead to many things for IT solutions companies like mine (Tri Megatech). I hear all the time, computers are getting easier to use and more automated, aren’t you worried about the future of your company? Technology always evolves, and there will always be something to fix or do. It’s being on the edge of it and knowing what is next that will allow you to monetize the most.

New Version Of Google Analytics Released

Google Analytics is the tool I personally use on all of my sites to gather user data like pageviews, uniques, popular content, etc. Google has just released a new version of their free web software. Previous users can still use the old version for 30 days, and new users will automatically be given the new version. There are a lot of changes, mostly in the UI (user interface). Here’s a few links if you want further information on what is changed, otherwise I highly recommend playing around with it yourself.

What is new?
In the new version, your reports have been redesigned for clarity, greater visibility of important metrics, and ease of use. Here are just a few of the features you’ll notice:

  • Email and export reports: Schedule or send ad-hoc personalized report emails and export reports in PDF format.
  • Custom Dashboard: No more digging through reports. Put all the information you need on a custom dashboard that you can email to others.
  • Trend and Over-time Graph: Compare time periods and select date ranges without losing sight of long term trends.
  • Contextual help tips: Context sensitive Help and Conversion University tips are available from every report.

Relevant Links

What Is My Niche?

I read a lot about how to have a good blog, how to get more readers, how to retain readers, etc. Almost all of the articles I read say to pick a niche, and stick with it. They all say don’t be too broad, if you’re going to write about optimizing for search engines, keep it on topic. I tend to write a little bit on the broader side of things, but I do have a niche.

What Is My Niche?

My niche is topics of interest for entrepreneurs, and I think I would be safe to say that young entrepreneurs in particular would have an even greater interest in my blog. You have to keep in mind that my blog is not meant to be just guides and tips for entrepreneurs, but things that an entrepreneur may have an interest in. For example, your average entrepreneur likes money, business, and nice things. I think the categories of topics I have generally fit the interest of most entrepreneurs:

  • Cars: Whether it’s a slightly easier easier goal like the new BMW m3, or you’re shooting to get a Dodge Viper with a matching helicopter, cars are many times a source of inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs.
  • Business/Blogging/Web Sites: This category is about blogging tips, learning to use the web better, other websites out there, and web business.
  • Design: We like nice looking things, whether it be a good looking website, or a piece of artwork.
  • Friends & Family: This is more of the personable part of the my blog. My domain name is my name, you should be able to know more about me as a person than just some anonymous articles.
  • Investing: We’ve all heard the phrase “It takes money to make money”. That’s what investing is all about. I’m definitely more in the beginning stages of learning about investing (like stocks, etc), so join me in my journey.
  • Making Money: This is about ideas for making money, how much money I’ve made doing something, etc.
  • My Business: I own a plethora of businesses (ActiveTuning, Tri Megatech, this blog, Video Experiment), and have had my share of projects in the past. I am constantly looking for new opportunity, and I love to share what I can.
  • Off Topic: General off topic articles that I like. This can range from a really funny video to an article that really doesn’t match the content from other categories.
  • Real Estate: Lets be honest, the last 10 years of real estate has been crazy. I’ve been trying to follow the market as much as possible, and I’m also looking for my first place to buy. This also includes more general real estate content like mansion hunting in Northern Viriginia.
  • Reviews: This could be a review of anything from a new product I purchased to a website of interest (or paid) that I wanted to take a further look into.
  • Technology: This new era of business revolves around technology. People have the opportunity to start a business in just a few clicks of a mouse. I talk about technology like eCommerce platforms, but even things like the latest plasma TV.
  • Ramblings: This is similar to “Off Topic” but more related to my personal information.

I’d be interested to get a better idea of what my readers background and interests are. Are you an entrepreneur? If so, do these topics interest you? Are there other topics that you think I should be covering? If you’re not an entrepreneur, what interests you about this blog?

The Best Comedian Ever – Brian Regan


My business partner for Tri Megatech turned me on to a comedian that has now become my favorite. His name is Brian Regan. Surprisingly he is a clean comic (meaning no cursing), but I find his comedy to be gut-hurting funny. If you’ve never heard anything from Brian Regan, watch this video from the Improv (and let me know what you think!):

Sponsored ClubTitan.org: Case Study To See If Sales/Brand Recognition Improve

Selling products is all about advertising! People have to know about your products in order to get sales, right? One of our top selling products for ActiveTuning is our custom grounding kits for the Nissan Titan and Pathfinder Armada. Grounding kits better help the grounding system of cars, and in turn, can potentially offer some very nice benefits:

  • Increased Horse Power & Torque
  • Awesome Looks
  • Faster Shifts on Automatics
  • Improved Mileage
  • Reduced Emissions
  • Stronger & Faster Starts
  • Smoother Idle
  • More Responsive Acceleration
  • Reduced Audio Noise
  • Improved Electrical Accessory Performance (brighter lights, windows/sunroofs operate faster, better radio reception, etc.)

As an additional positive, many of the 04-06 Titan owners experienced some sort of clicking sound with their trucks. Installing our grounding kit on many of the trucks also got rid of that issue…which helps make it a top seller.

ClubTitan.org is a forum made specifically for Nissan Titan owners. Forum communities are in my opinion the single best way to market an aftermarket car product. Offer good service and a great product, and word of mouth spreads quick. We decided to sponsor ClubTitan for at least a month and see how it affects our Titan grounding kit sales. There are about 80,000 Titan’s sold a year, just a decent piece of that pie is great.

Sponsorship was $50 for a month, and you get a few benefits:

  • You get a 468×60 banner in rotation throughout the forum
  • You get a 150×85 banner on the homepage
  • You have the ability to post in the forums as a sponsor, and can promote your products
  • We get our own dedicated forum

Here are the banners I made:

46860 example banner advertisement on ClubTitan.org

ActiveTuning example banner for sponsorship on ClubTitan.org

We’re currently working with the site owner to set things up so we can have a few different variations of banners, and see what performs the best.

We decided to also use our sponsorship status to kick things off with a group buy discount on the grounding kit. All we required was 25 people to buy a kit, and we’d drop $10 (20%) off the price.

I’ll be posting an update later on and we’ll see how everything performed. We’ll find out if the sponsorship was worth the cost, and get a better idea of how best to utilize forum community marketing.

Experimenting With AuctionAds

AuctionAds logo

I removed most of the AdSense ads as well as all Kontera ads for now. I’m going to experiment with AuctionAds, a network that utilizes targeted search terms with auction sites like eBay. I’ve heard about AuctionAds before, but I didn’t really think about it too much until I read more about it at ProBlogger. Mainly reading the comments and seeing how some people have been really successful with it.

From the sounds of it, it works best on very niche sites. Take a mobile phone review site, where a post can be targeted directly to a product. For example if this was a review for the Palm Treo 700WX, I can have an ad that looks like this:


This can be very effective for a site, which generates good revenue. The site would make money from anybody signing up for eBay as well as if anybody buys anything on eBay as a result of clicking on the ad.

I’ll be keyword targeting a few posts that I feel may be a good fit for a higher CTR. This is more of an experiment for now just to see how it does. I will report further as time goes by.

If you use AuctionAds now, let us know how it has worked out for you (feel free to post anonymously).

Mansion Hunting In Northern Virginia Part 2

Last month I went mansion hunting in the South Riding and Clifton areas of Northern Virginia. After posting pictures, I got some feedback stating that I could find even better houses in the Falls Church and McLean areas, so I went out to see what I could find. I took a ton of pictures, so expect another 2 parts after this post. Bear with the first few pictures, I didn’t realize the lens was zoomed in. Also note that while the front of the houses are impressive, the rear of the house normally makes your realize the house is about 3 times bigger than it may actually look.

Post your comments and let me know what your favorite ones are!

Picture of a mansion in Northern Virginia

Not a very good picture, but one of the more interesting style houses that I saw. A very modern look, and much bigger than it may seem. The rest of the house drops down the mountain we were on.

Picture of a mansion in Northern Virginia

Picture of a mansion in Northern Virginia

Picture of a mansion in Northern Virginia

Picture of a mansion in Northern Virginia

Continue Reading »

April In Review: Massive Boost In Traffic

Traffic

This was the first full month that my blog has been active. Last month I generated over 10,000 pageviews and over 6,000 unique visitors. This month I had 20,000 unique visitors and almost 24,000 pageviews.

April 2007 Traffic

The total number is somewhat deceiving though, as you’ll find out later on how much of that traffic was generated from one site.

My new vs. return visitor rate was only 4.8%, but also because I had a huge spike in traffic from one site. Looking at the last 10 days of the month, I was at about 13.8%, which is much better (but not as high as I’d like). This number will continue to be lower than I want due to the fact that I’m just growing my traffic and readers.

Monetization

As I mentioned in last months review, this blog is not meant to subsidize income just yet. In fact, I removed most of the AdSense ads from the page other than one on each page. I did add Kontera in-text links though.

AdSense brought in a whopping $8.12 on 23,000 impressions with just 16 clicks. That gives me a $0.35 eCPM :( That also means that each click averaged about $0.50, which isn’t too shabby. As traffic starts to grow and I really try and optimize for ads, I hope to see the total number get much larger.

Kontera brought in $3.51 on 19,186 impressions with 57 clicks giving a $0.18 eCPM. I’m told that Kontera gets better over time, and I have seen the eCPMs go up higher towards the end of the month when there are clicks.

Another thing to note for the lower CTR is the fact that the posts that generated the majority of the traffic were picture-based. This means there is not much Kontera advertising going on, and people will be more likely to skip over text links from Google.

RSS Subscribers

Last month I said that I wanted to have 100 RSS subscribers, well I peaked this month at 257 in one day. It was the day after a huge traffic spike though, but I’d say average numbers are now in the 60-70 range, about 10-30 higher than last month. I’m really hoping these numbers continue to grow.

RSS feed stats April 2007

Search Engine Goodness

There was a massive improvement in search engine results this month. I finally have a Google PageRank, it came up as a 3/10…not bad. In March I had 176 unique visitors as a result of search engine traffic. In April this number increased by 260% with 678 unique visitors. Here were the top 10 keywords:

  • invest in powercast
  • powercast ipo
  • powercast invest stock
  • powercast invest
  • e92 m3
  • stumbleupon
  • david pitlyuk
  • fast times indoor carting
  • virginia mansions
  • www.nevblog.com

As you can see, my post on Powercast being the next multi-billion dollar idea got a good amount of search engine love….apparently I’m not the only one that thinks it’s a great idea.

Popular Pages/Content

This was the top 10 most popular content on this blog for the month:

  1. A Raunchy Dora The Explorer
  2. The 45 Best Tech Sector Corporate Web Designs: H-O
  3. The 45 Best Technology Sector Corporate Web Designs: A-G
  4. David Pitlyuk (Homepage)
  5. Hot Import Nights 2007, Washington DC Pictures
  6. The Next Multi-BILLION Dollar Idea
  7. 2008 BMW M3 (E92) Production Pictures
  8. 2008 Infiniti G37 Coupe
  9. Who is David Pitlyuk?
  10. Dodge Viper Coupe With Matching Helicopter

We’ll find out why #1 was #1, but note that it had over 15,000 unique visitors to that page. From the pages that didn’t get promotion anywhere, the majority of their traffic came from search engines. The ones with bigger search engine traffic was Hot Import nights 2007, 08′ BMW M3, the next multi-billion dollar idea, and 08′ Infiniti G37 coupe. It looks the car posts have brought a good amount of traffic, I just hope some of that is targeted enough to retain those random visitors.

Top Referrals

Here are the top referrals for websites (not search engines) that referred traffic to my blog:

  1. CollegeHumor
  2. StumbleUpon
  3. Smashing Magazine
  4. CSS Globe
  5. TN Media
  6. Digg
  7. ActiveTuning
  8. TheWolfWeb
  9. TotalFark
  10. John Chow dot Com

College Humor brought the majority of my traffic this month. When I found a took a picture of a funny Dora The Explorer toy, I made a post and submitted it to a few sites hoping to get it picked up. CollegeHumor was the only one that picked it up, but that ended up generating over 15,000 unique visitors (although not much of it retained I’m sure). StumbleUpon has brought a good amount of traffic to the Dora pages as well as some of web design stuff. From what I see, a lot of the SU visitors have similar interests as Digg visitors (obviously depending on the categories they choose). CSS Globe, TN Media, Digg, and the TheWolfWeb all linked to a post I made. John Chow visitors are still coming from various links that John had posted to my blog.

All said and done, it wasn’t a bad month! I’m having a good time blogging, and I’m meeting a lot of new people. I’m looking forward to seeing this continue to grow, and only time will tell where things lead.

DavidPitlyuk.com Can Now Be Accessed Through DavePit.com

Ok I realize that my last name “Pitlyuk” is not easy to spell. This pretty much takes everybody that doesn’t bookmark me or doesn’t RSS feed me out of the return visitors list because most people won’t remember how to spell my domain name. I have now registered DavePit.com, which points to my real domain name. DavePit.com is easy enough to remember, right?? So now you guys have no excuse to not come back (that is unless you don’t like my content ;)).

Oh, and just FYI – My name is pronounced “Pit Luck”. Easy enough :)