Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Not that Big News, but something else Mildly Interesting

Hi all.

After a loooooooong hiatus from bloggering I've found myself in need of your good opinions. I know I can always trust my trusty readers to guide me in the paths of righteousness and sound marketing principles. (How are you, by the way, my dear readers? I have missed you, you know.)

So I'm starting a business.

It turns out I'm rather handy in kitchen, dontcha know, and without really meaning to, I've sort of started a private wee bakery in my house. It began with my Teutonic neighbor hiring me to bake birthday cakes for her sons because, while she enjoys baking, she doesn't really have the time and thinks I do a better job anyway. So she went around and told everyone else, and now I take orders from all my neighbors for cakes for their special occasions. (I also do a good line in pies, but those don't seem to appeal to the English palate as much, so even though I think my pies are a good deal more interesting than my cakes, no one really seems to want them, but that may change.)

And since I haven't been able to get a job in the god-forsaken county that is Cornwall, this cake-baking lark has become my only source of income. So go with what you know, right? Time to expand the bizness!

Step one: reach more clientelle through website.

Sounds simple enough. There are a million companies out there that allow idiots like me to build personal websites for a small fee and provide templates and tech support and all sorts of things for a small monthly fee. But here's the kicker: I want the URL of the website to be the name of the business, and all the names for the business I originally wanted have already been registered as URLs by other people.

SO! I have on the sidebar a selection of potential names, and I would like you to vote on the one you would find most appealing if you were hiring someone to bake a cake for your wedding or birthday or whatever.

Feel free to leave comments as to why you voted the way you did. I have my own thoughts on each of these, but I'm curious to see yours.

As for the rest of my life, here's the rundown of the past year:

Marriage is great
Cornwall is beautiful, but bankrupt. There are NO JOBS.
I still haven't finished my PhD.
Nor am I pregnant.
My last living grandparent died a few weeks ago, followed shortly by his wife, followed shortly by my penultimate surving great-uncle. It's going to be one of those winters, I can tell.
The slugs ate my whole garden except the sweetcorn.
Pirate and I both had pig flu and nearly died.
My parents came over to celebrate Christmas.

And that's about it, really. Now go to the sidebar and VOTE, bitches!

(Oh, and that first entry should be Cornucopia Cakes, as Dave very kindly pointed out. I can't correct it on the poll because blogger won't allow you to make changes after voting has begun. Very sporting of them and all that, but they clearly didn't anticipate my bad spelling.)

20 comments:

Dave said...

You're alive!!

I'll put you back on my blogroll if you think you might start blogging again. You could even go on the reserve list for BMCC.

Dave said...

Erm, where's the list of names? Am I just being thick?

Mrs. Chaucer's Pirate said...

On the sidebar, near the top.

Dave said...

Sorry, I'd scrolled too far.

Dave said...

Did you mean Conucopia (a SF convention) or Cornucopia ?

Mrs. Chaucer's Pirate said...

Whoops. That should be Cornucopia, as in a horn of plenty. Thanks for pointing out the mistake. I shall attempt to remedy it at once.

Helena said...

Hi CB

I'm just about to vote for my favourite name (the bespoke bakery) but...with my webby hat on just wanted to point out that it's better for SEO if you use keywords in your url...for example www.cornwall-cakes.com

Anyway if you need a site knocked up I'll do one for you no bother (or fee)...just let me know

hxx

Mrs. Chaucer's Pirate said...

i don't know what SEO is, but Pirate and I did a web chat with a sales rep at iPage (the site I'm probably going to use) and Pirate was satisfied that we'd be able to put lots of meta data onto the site for better search engine hits. whatever that means.

i'm all for keywords in the URL, but Corwall Cakes (and Kernow Cakes) have already been rejected on the grounds that we'll be leaving cornwall in a few months, so the benefits of that name are a bit time-limited.

What about Commodore Cakes? Would be popular with the service families, at any rate...

Mrs. Chaucer's Pirate said...

oh, by the way, HI!!!!! hehehe.

And thanks for the offer of web help. I'm kind of a control freak and like doing things for myself, but I was already thinking of asking you (for your standard professional rates of course; i've no wish to take advantage of a friendship) to put together a good logo and graphic for me. I think Coronation Cakes has good logo potential, and sounds nice and posh. The kind of place you'd want to order a wedding cake from.

Anonymous said...

The absurd situation has turned out

zIggI said...

I seem to have voted with the popular choice. Is it the decorating you do or the whole shebang?
Lovely to hear from you again CB I hope you have a very Happy and Prosperous New Year XX

FirstNations said...

I like the alliterative sound of Cornucakia Crakes. I also like what you sent me! AND YOU'RE BACK! * turns handsprings *
*breaks something*
*slinks off*

I did a bunk too. Life gets complicated huh.

Annie said...

Mmm, cakes...

All good names, but I like Kingfisher Cakes. It really jumped out at me.

Wandering Wynie said...

The Bespoke Bakery makes me think of very posh, good-quality cakes. I also want your pies ;) x

Donnw/2nz said...

I voted for the winner too! No I didn't peek :(

Sorry to hear about all the untimely passages, what is it about this time of year?

Best Wishes for your new endeavour..dee-lish!

helena said...

Better Search Engine hits = Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) = Getting to the top of the list in Google.

Basically Search Engine Optimisation is just pre-thinking all the terms that people are like likely to use when they're looking for someone to bake a cake for them, narrowing them down to those that would be the most useful/relevant to you and using them in a natural way throughout your website. (Use keywords too much and you'll be accused of keyword stuffing and your website will be blacklisted)

Adding Meta Data to your site is good but Google have a whole heap of other criteria for SEO as well including stuff like accessibility for disabled users, valid css and xhtm. etc... plus things like headings, bullets, title attributes etc are also taken into account. In fact the bloody list is endless... (as I know - My business website was optimised for an Edinburgh audience and now we've moved from Edinburgh (hurrah!!)I'm currently redoing all the SEO for site.

Search Engine Ranking also depends on your web content being updated on a regular basis (which is why blogs tend to score highly in Search Engines) and on who links to your website - the more websites with a high page ranking which link to your site the higher up the Search Engine Rank you go. (However link to too many website with a low page ranking and you'll go down the list...it's like snakes and bloody ladders!)

Sorry CB...rambling on - SEO is taking over my brain at the moment! (and this the abbreviated comment - you should have seen the length of the first lot of stuff I typed!) anyway if you think you can stand it, I'll gladly email you my notes on SEO if you like.

I did have a thought re your website though. Rather than paying monthly for a domain why not buy your domain name (www.whateveryouchoose.com) and set your website up via wordpress? A lot of businesses are doing this now. They have loads of templates that you can tweak to suit your design ideas. Plus of course, they're free - which is never a bad thing!

Also, if there's high unemployment in Cornwall it just might be that there's a lot of Enterprise Finance Around which means that you might qualify for grants/funding in order to set up your business and especially to set up an online presence. Try BusinessLink as a start.


(sorry, rambling on again!)

helena said...

PS. Re the graphics for your site...take advantage of friendship - I'd love to design your logo whatever name you decide on. You can bake me a cake or something! And please don't think that "mates rates" mean you get less say in what you want it to look like!

Percy Bisque Silley said...

Pray then, you are English?

Why then, are you not Genteel?

Fie upon you; for you betray The Island Race.

Tersely and with Much Irritation,

Sir Percy Bisque Silley
(Knighted)

Mrs. Chaucer's Pirate said...

Anon: really?

Z: the whole shebang. and i'd like to point out that the reason you want one of my cakes rather than some other posh bakery is that mine actually TASTE as good as they look, if not better. I may not be Michaelangelo with the sugar paste, but damnit all my cakes taste awesome and aren't all dry and sugary. Happy New Year to you, too, and all the clan!

FN: indeed

Ammie: i'm glad to hear that, as it's currently the running fav here at home.

WW: you can eat my pie any day, baby!

Donn: thanks, mate.

H: you da bomb.

PBS: normally i would not tolerate being made mock of on my own blog, but since you made a pun on a great poet with a thin, creamy soup containing an amount of pureed lobster I shall forgive you. (This time.)

Anonymous said...

The writer of marlowefish.blogspot.com has written a superior article. I got your point and there is nothing to argue about. It is like the following universal truth that you can not disagree with: Youve never known if its ok to eat a green crisp. I will be back.