Post revision

I’m not normally into post revision, but I did change a post about Black Mountain Weavers. I have received a couple of negative comments, and I realized that I was inadvertently having a more powerful impact on this store’s image than I meant to.

I was tipped off to my secret super powers when I noticed that I would occasionally get a comment on that post, and when I noticed that it was turning up as a fairly common search term on my stat analytics. Basically, Black Mountain Weavers does not really have a web presence, so whenever anyone googled the store, my blog post would come up as the second item. So my somewhat flip assessment of the store was transformed, via the power of the Google search engine, from a review read by the three people who read my blog, to The Review that anyone looking for info about this store would read.

I don’t necessarily think my assessment of the store was unfair–it did have a pretty small and rather pricey selection–but I reviewed that store fairly early on in my knitting store reviews, and I didn’t necessarily have a sense of the full range of the prices common to indie yarns. Also, I visited it before I read Clara Parkes’ The Knitter’s Book of Yarn, which had a paragraph that I found particularly persuasive: “I’m always on high alert for anything indicating small-scale, locally produced yarn. Not only is it a chance  to get something totally unique in an age of increasing conformity, but it’s a small way to validate and support what these farmers are trying to do…by supporting a sheep farm–by making even one purchase a year–you’re helping sustain an important business and a rapidly disappearing agricultural way of life. You’re also helping ensure a richer, higher-quality variety of yarns for all knitters.”

Adam calls the woo version of the food movement “sustainorganica,” and though it’s easy to make fun of, and not necessarily what I want all the time (I went through a period of addiction to McDonald’s Fillet-O-Fish, despite having grown up in the  “sustainorganica” capital, San Francisco), I think the movement does have worthy goals. So, I put my original review in strike-through and moved it to the bottom of the post, so it wouldn’t show up “above the fold” on Google searches, and tried to write a slightly more neutral review of the store so that knitters who are interested in the store will not necessarily be dissuaded from visiting it.

I don’t necessarily agree with some of the comments on that post, but I think the real lesson is not whether you should or should not support independent yarn spinners and dyers, but rather, how all businesses need to make the internet work for them, not against them. Even if you are some sort of live-off-the-land business or one that was created as a response to our overly technical world (not that that is necessarily Black Mountain Weaver’s philosophy, just a hypothetical), it is important to establish a strong web presence so that when people search for you, they will find how YOU want to be represented on a Google search, instead of a third-party’s opinion. This includes learning how to properly tag and program your posts, so that your page will show up high on the Google rankings. Whether you like it or not, the internet is the future, and any business that wants to survive needs to be aware of the power of customer-generated comments, whether on their own blogs or user-generated sites like Yelp.

Posted in the Business, Uncategorized, Yarn Stores at November 1st, 2008. Trackback URI: trackback

One Response to “Post revision”

  1. November 2nd, 2008 at 1:23 pm #Grace

    hmmm… I just went back and read that review and the comments. I think it is admirable that you took action after realizing that your review constitutes the stores primary web presence and I have to agree that the comments were a bit too negative. It’s great to have and support indie yarn suppliers and all, but if there isn’t much of a selection it’s not a store I’d be likely to visit more than once.