Site news: Changes coming to Orlando Informer as we prepare for Diagon Alley

|

A letter from Dan Hatfield, Owner & Editor of OrlandoInformer.com:

Greetings, my friends. As you likely know, we’ve had incredible growth since the start of our site almost three years ago…

  • 600,000 pageviews in 2011
  • 1.9 million pageviews in 2012 (up 216%)
  • 5.5 million pageviews in 2013 (up 189%)

And, as we announced last week, January’s pageviews rose another 202% over January 2013! All in all, our fans and readers have helped us become the world’s largest and most popular resource for Universal Orlando vacation planning.

To help guide us to this point, I have dedicated 60 to 80 hours each and every week for three years (except for a one week vacation during Christmas 2011). What’s more, aside from less than a dozen exceptions, I have updated our site literally every day for these three years.

As essentially a one-man operation, building Orlando Informer has been a passion that your readership has allowed me to pursue, and for that I am incredibly grateful. At the same time, I’ve reached a point in this process where I need to find a better balance between my professional pursuits, my family, and my health. In addition, I know I need to free up some work time as well, because the opening of Diagon Alley by itself will demand 50 to 100 hours of my time as I research and document the new area, create and edit all-new vacation planning articles, update our free touring plans, etc.

Informer family: Isla, Rosie, Noa & Dan.
Informer family: Isla, Rosie, Noa & Dan.

So changes are afoot. The good news for you, the reader, is that most of the changes I’m making will be transparent to you – and these steps will ensure that we can continue to be the world’s leading resource for Universal Orlando vacation planning as the resort continues to develop its incredible entertainment offerings. As part of this, I’m very happy to announce that Marc N. Kleinhenz, best known as the author of our Rumor Round-Up and Countdown to Diagon Alley posts, will be expanding his contributions to our site and assisting with editing our blog. I’m very excited to have a chance to work more closely with Marc, and I know his expertise will help our posts shine even brighter.

The bad news is that there are a few changes you will notice. Most notably, we have discontinued our Weekly Dispatch blog post and the accompanying weekly email. Furthermore, even though I pride myself on having posted 50 or more “daily updates” on our site every month for over two years, I simply need to throttle back on this number. Don’t worry – I’ll continue to provide our readers with obsessively updated information about Universal Orlando, I’m just going to try to take a little more time for my family on the weekends. (Although, we are going to the first night of Mardi Gras this weekend!)

The bottom line is, going forward you may notice not quite as many new updates and blog posts each week. This should not be interpreted as us stepping back from our pledge to be your best (and favorite) Universal Orlando vacation planning site. In reality, the long-term prospects for these changes will make our site even stronger, as I will have more time to dedicate to larger projects, like finally getting our forum up and running, launching our mobile apps, etc.

Thanks for taking the time to read this, and, as always, thank you for your support! If you have any questions, you are welcome to leave a comment below. Otherwise, for private matters, you may certainly drop me a line via our Contact page.

Sincerely,

Dan Hatfield

PS. If you happen to be new to our site, you can learn all about what we do on our About page.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Previous

Super Awesome Super Bowl contest: Win a set of customized t-shirts [UPDATE – winners anounced!]

Talking Slime Time Live with Jonah Travick: Sliming, pieing & Gak-filled laughs at Universal’s Nickelodeon Studios

Next
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Kathleen
Kathleen
February 6, 2014 12:08 pm

Sounds great Dan!  Your quality is the best part of the information, not the quantity 🙂

Newmiss3
Newmiss3
February 6, 2014 12:11 pm

Love your site, going in April/May to USO/IOA FOR TENTH TIME WITH FAMILY. Dialing back is good, you have a young family….but do not disappear…love your humor and vision. Literally, I check EVERYDAY for info!

Sasha Halderman Hancock
Sasha Halderman Hancock
February 6, 2014 12:03 pm

thank you for all you do

Total Orlando
Total Orlando
February 6, 2014 12:04 pm

Great to see a very successful person take care of his family Dan! It will make the site even better!

Darren Fink
Darren Fink
February 6, 2014 12:06 pm

OrlandoInformer.com appreciate all the work you do in keeping us informed!!

Erin
Erin
February 6, 2014 12:30 pm

I absolutely love this site!  Hands down, it’s the most informative, most entertaining, best organized page relating to Universal and Central Florida I have the pleasure of reading.  I want to say THANK YOU!!  And as a self-employed, mother of 6 I know how important it is to carve out time for family.  So, go make memories.  Be happy with that beautiful crew of yours!!  I appreciate all you’ve done and continue to do!!

Stephanie Sobieski
Stephanie Sobieski
February 6, 2014 12:22 pm

your hard work is very much appreciated

Susan Gesing
Susan Gesing
February 6, 2014 12:22 pm

YAY Marc!!!!!!!!!!!

Judith Taylor
Judith Taylor
February 6, 2014 12:40 pm

Love this site and think you do an amazing job, it’s great to keep up to date with all the goings on in Orlando from here in Scotland UK. So excited for our visit there in July x

Ann Claar McCracken
Ann Claar McCracken
February 6, 2014 12:57 pm

Thanks for all you do and GOOD FOR YOU! Raising a family is one of the most important jobs ever!

Paul Chippy Chapman
Paul Chippy Chapman
February 6, 2014 1:07 pm

You are respected in the UK as well..!

Heather Mortimer
Heather Mortimer
February 6, 2014 1:12 pm

thanks! like u say the changes will make the site stronger but u must ensure u enjoy ur family too. thank u again. its lovely to see all the UK fans on this site too.

Lisa N Joe Naberhaus
Lisa N Joe Naberhaus
February 6, 2014 1:18 pm

Going to Universal for the first time in December. Started researching and stumbled across your site. By far the best information I have found! Thanks!

Sherry L Convey Weber
Sherry L Convey Weber
February 6, 2014 1:43 pm

Thanks for all your dedication to this site.

Dawn Smith Bowers
Dawn Smith Bowers
February 6, 2014 1:50 pm

Good for you! I know from experience if you don’t take care of yourself and your family first they will suffer tremendously. Happy for you! We LIVE for your constant info. Can’t wait to see what you have in store.

julie y
julie y
February 6, 2014 2:35 pm

Thank you for all your hard work!!! You totally deserve some quality time with your lovely family. Look forward to more of your amazing site and great tips!!! X

Patricia Cruz
Patricia Cruz
February 6, 2014 3:13 pm

The site is amazing. I’m sure your fans will not mind at all if you spend some much needed time with your adorable family. 🙂

OrlandoInformer.com
OrlandoInformer.com
February 6, 2014 4:54 pm

You guys are awesome. Thanks again for all your support!

Alana Strang
Alana Strang
February 6, 2014 5:49 pm

I agree family come first and you’ve done an amazing job with your information site, most of the tips and planning information for all of our holidays to Orlando have come from ur site. Well done!

flamtapgt
flamtapgt
February 6, 2014 6:37 pm

We just finished three days at IOA and US. This site helped us immensely in planning and enjoying the parks. Thanks for all your work on the site, and get some helpers!

Kathryn Simpson
Kathryn Simpson
February 6, 2014 8:32 pm

You’ll still be my favorite! If you are looking for blog posters again anytime soon, sign me up! Enjoy your beautiful family!

Hog Roaster
Hog Roaster
February 7, 2014 5:04 am

Hey Dan, as an English fan of Universal I can’t be there as often as I would like and Informer is my lifeline. But, I do like to know its written by a real family man with family values. You have a lovely family and you deserve to enjoy the while you are all young.

AlternaKat
AlternaKat
February 7, 2014 10:38 am

Dan – thanks so much for all the hard work. My husband and I have been saving for a very long time in order to take our kids (ages 8 and 13) on our upcoming trip to Orlando. Obsessively reading your obsessively updated site has definitely taken the edge off and calmed my nerves about this trip. I REALLY REALLY appreciate all of the hard work and dedication, and I also understand the need to balance work and family, so I am happy to read of the changes you are making. THANK YOU SO MUCH.

Matthew Lynch
Matthew Lynch
February 10, 2014 3:45 pm

You do a brilliant job Dan, I for one know my Universal Vacation wouldn’t be the same without your expert advice. I appreciate all the work, it would be great if I saw you on my travels round Diagon Alley in September to say thank you.

About Taylor Strickland

Taylor Strickland is the owner of Orlando Informer, the internationally awarded independent resource for guests visiting Orlando. In this position, he leads the website's overall direction and day-to-day operations, working with a team of writers, editors, developers, and producers.