ChartWatchers

2009 - THE STOCKCHARTS YEAR IN REVIEW

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Happy Holidays Fellow ChartWatchers!

Here we are, once again, at the final ChartWatchers of the year - of the decade(!) in this case.  An awful lot has happened at StockCharts.com this year and I wanted to take a moment and review with you all of the changes and improvements that we've made this year and then tease you a little by hinting at what's to come.

The year kicked off with the publication of a pair of articles about using ChartStyles and StyleButtons to quickly switch between different set of indicators and chart settings.

Next up was the first article in our "Technical Analysis 101" series.  Over the course of the year, we published 15 different articles in that series and we still have at least 10 more to go.  Look for the next article in that series to appear in January.

February brought a huge change as we added 8 new blogs to our website - including the "ChartWatchers" blog that you are reading now.  Since our first blog post on January 30th, we've published over 500 different, free articles in our blogs over the course of 2009.  That's more content than we've published over the last 5 years combined!

February also brought news of John Murphy's latest book, "The Visual Investor 2nd Edition."  The book was an instant success with lots of new information and updated, easy-to-read charts.

On February 4th we added Site Reliability Reports from the independent testing company Pingdom.com to our website.  Now everyone could see - using the "Uptime Report" link on our Support Page - just how reliable our web service is (or is not).  It's all there in cold, hard numbers.

On February 23rd our new Status Blog duly noted our first minor site issue since the blog began.  The Status Blog has proven invaluable over the course of the year and remains the first place to go if you suspect our site is having trouble.

Finally, on February 28th, we learned that we had won Stocks and Commodities magazine's Readers' Choice Award for Best Technical website for the 8th straight year!

In March, we upgraded the "What's New" area so that it automatically shows you all of the latest blog articles and updates.  The "What's New" area appears in the middle of our homepage and on the "Members" page for subscribers.

March was also when we began rolling out the redesign of the website (a process that is still ongoing).  We started by updating the look and feel of the Market Message area.  As I promised in my blog, the new cleaner look has gradually spread across the entire site.

April saw us celebrating our 10 year anniversary with a huge special and a celebratory logo change.  I got nostalgic about it on my blog too.

April also saw us add a second datafeed to our website.  The IDC/Comstock feed provided much needed backup and support for our ailing Thomson/Reuters datafeed.  In addition, the good folks at IDC continue to be extremely supportive of our use of their data.  (Look for us to make a major announcement about new kinds of data from our IDC feed in January.)

Not to be outdone by the datafeed news, our Customer Support team upped their game with the move to our new Customer Support helpdesk area.  New FAQs, new articles, new ways to get support were all rolled out and have been a big success.  Several new people were also hired to help with customer support.

Finally in April (a very busy month for us!), we announced that Arthur Hill had officially joined the staff as our Senior Technical Analyst.  Since then Arthur has written over 300 articles for both our free users and our Market Message subscribers.  He has also posted a new blog and countless videos for subscribers so they can follow along as he looks at the charts.

May brought with it a big boost to our Internet connection's capacity as we started the move to a Fiber Gigabit connection.  The move had immediate benefits but, unfortunately, we encountered two major problems with the connection later in the year.  At this point however things are running smoothly and we are serving more charts than every before these days.

June saw us introduce the new "Create a Chart" bar with auto-completion (just start typing the name or symbol of a stock and we'll find what you are looking for automatically) - a huge improvement for people trying to find stock symbols.

In July we narrowly dodged a bullet when fire broke out at our ISP's main Seattle offices.  While we were only offline briefly in the middle of the night, other website hosted at that location for offline for weeks.

In August, we revamped our display of the Top 10 lists placing them prominently on our Home page and, later, on our Free Charts page.

Winding down the year - in October we added Investing Quotes and Site Usage tips to the bottom of many of our pages.  November brought the new site design to PerfCharts, CandleGlance and GalleryView pages as well as the completely redone "Free Charts" page.

November was when we also rolled out our Customer Loyalty program and finally joined Twitter.  And in December we added our new Data Update blog to let you know when our databases have been updated.

Phew!  That's a lot of work and a lot of improvements to the website.  The amazing thing is that this doesn't include all the behind-the-scenes stuff like data updates, symbol adds, customer service responses, hardware updates, etc.

The bottom line here is that 2009 has been a GREAT year to be a StockCharts.com member.  I hope you have been able to keep up with all the changes and I wanted to make sure you knew how grateful we are that you use our site.  Rest assured that we'll be working just as hard in 2010.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

- Chip

Chip Anderson
About the author: is the founder and president of StockCharts.com. He founded the company after working as a Windows developer and corporate consultant at Microsoft from 1987 to 1997. Since 1999, Chip has guided the growth and development of StockCharts.com into a trusted financial enterprise and highly-valued resource in the industry. In this blog, Chip shares his tips and tricks on how to maximize the tools and resources available at StockCharts.com, and provides updates about new features or additions to the site. Learn More
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