...what remains, no matter how improbable, is the answer." Sherlock Holmes

Sometimes we all have to take a good look at something that's not working the way we think it should and try to figure out what the issue might be. Sometimes it's something really deep rooted that will take a long time to figure out and correct. Kind of like a wire in the wall somewhere that breaks and having to hire an electrician to come and figure out just where to drill the hole to fix it.

Sometimes it's possible that the answer could be right on the surface, something that you either hadn't ever considered or something that, for whatever reason, you just couldn't imagine it being. Kind of like finally realizing that you're now allergic to a food you've always eaten once you start paying attention to the signs of things that happen to you when you eat that food and once you stop eating it.

In this case I'll get a bit more personal if you don't mind. Back in 2009 I wrote a post talking about the value lesson my dad taught me. It concerned the website this blog is attached to and why I should have my picture on it. I have followed that advice for many years and always felt comfortable with it.

Until lately, when I've looked at some things and wondered what some issues might be. Not counting the blog, my website gets an average of 35 visits a day. That's more than a thousand visits a month. For a website of this type that's a lot of visits, as most independent business websites don't come close to numbers like that. And with the types of services I offer, it's even more niched to be effective.

Yet, I average maybe one call every two months. That's shocking if you ask me. One would expect that with the kind of numbers I get visiting that I should at the very least have a 1% contact rate; that's only 10 calls a year, but that's almost twice what I get now. Add the blog to the mix and the numbers go up even more. By rights, I should be averaging at a minimum of a call a week.

But I don't. My conversions aren't great at all. I get a lot of visitors to my newsletter page but not all that many conversions. I get a lot of visitors to the pages that I'm optimized the best for. People definitely understand what I do; even if I do more than one thing, figuring out what I do business wise through this site isn't all that hard to do.

So I'm doing a test, and I remembered the value lesson from my dad. Based on that, and people I've been talking to lately, and the phrase from Sherlock Holmes, I'm taking the step of removing my picture from this site. It's no longer on my bio page, and it's no longer on this blog. If I respond to a comment my image will still be associated with my account, but it's a small picture and it's not all that big if someone reads the post, and they certainly won't see it if there are no comments.

Could it be the image that keeps people from calling? Should be an interesting experiment, shouldn't it? It's the easiest thing to do right now, and truthfully, most people who come through the website don't come to the blog; the blog gets its own traffic from other sources while 73% of the people who arrive at my main site come through the search engines.

Of course, this might not be the reason; it might be too simple. Let's find out.