Today, I am sharing my first income report for 2018. A lot of amazing things happened last month.
My traffic and income increased a lot.
So how did this happen? I will share the things I did and also the biggest reason for the change in traffic.
Last month showed me that I needed to keep working on things that work. If you are a new blogger, then take it from me that blogging takes time and things only work if you work on them.
Sometimes you are on top of the world with high traffic and making loads of money, and the next month you might be going down.
THIS IS NORMAL. It happens, and it is ok.
So what do you do during these ups and downs? Just keep doing what you are doing, work on things that worked for you, analyze your strategies, and pinpoint what went wrong.
I like working toward goals, and my blog updates are a way for me to analyze what worked and what didn’t. I earnestly hope that they help you to grow your blog as well.
There are two reasons I share my blog update and income report: first, to be accountable, and second, to show you no matter how young your blog is, you can still make money from it.
My page views were around 90K in December, and last month they jumped to over 166K. What happened? Pinterest was getting updated, and many of my pins were appearing in the trending section and the smart feed. I was also creating tons of updated pins for old posts.
Apart from this, something interesting happened. You must know that I am working on improving my SEO game. Last month, my SEO traffic increased by 62 percent.
I worked on a couple of posts strictly to rank for the keywords and did a lot of work on on-page SEO. Because I am a complete SEO beginner, the course in a blogging club I’m part of helped me get a better understanding of the process.
If you are looking for an excellent resource for SEO, I suggest Backlinko.com. Brian’s content is just incredible.
Apart from organic traffic, Pinterest was a big part of my traffic spike, and I am working more on it now.
Here are some of my past month’s income updates:
It’s another win for me as my email list comes close to 5K. I have been reassessing my opt-ins and freebies and analyzing them to improve them and provide better content.
Recently some of my readers asked me how to get into email marketing. If you are entirely new to email marketing, then check out this super detailed post from Meera Kothand. I always refer to her posts for anything related to email. AWeber and Thrive Themes are two resources that have helped me to grow my list hugely.
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Last month was crazy with Pinterest. I was waking up to see BIG Pinterest traffic numbers every day. Some of my last month’s new posts went viral, and they accounted for half of my traffic spike.
I went from 1.2 million to 2.3 million in reach. That’s a significant number for me.
There are a couple of things that made this happen:
- Pinterest was getting updated, so I focused on what was working with pins and created more of them.
- I experimented with short pin sizes.
- Because new posts were appearing in the smart feed, I created new posts with more targeted keywords.
- I pinned manually experimenting with different traffic times.
The best part is I was away on a holiday last month, and in spite of not pinning much, my traffic was high.
Overall, it was an excellent month for Pinterest.
If you are struggling with Pinterest, then look no further than Carly’s Pinteresting Strategies. I can personally vouch for this eBook, which is the biggest reason for my Pinterest growth.
If your Pinterest account is older than six months and you want to really go deeper into understanding Pinterest, then I suggest Jennifer’s PIMP course. This course will give you an in-depth knowledge of how Pinterest works.
If you are stuck with your Pinterest, then this is the course you need.
My referral traffic from Facebook is increasing. This is mainly due to posting at high engagement times and running Facebook ads.
My likes and followers are still growing a lot organically, and I am planning to go deeper into getting good ROI with Facebook ads. Hopefully I will look into this more in the coming months.
This year working on Twitter is also one of my goals, which I intend to do after the first quarter.
I love posting on Instagram, and my posts are related to my travel photography. This social media channel takes time to grow, and it is more geared toward working with brands. I would be happy to connect with more travel lovers on Insta. Any digital nomads here?
Now for the income update.
Last month, my income was $4,570.34 before expenses.
Survey Affiliates (iGain, MaxBounty, Panthera Network) – $1,498.75
Bluehost – $640
30 Days or Less to Virtual Assistant Success – $300
Bookkeeper Launch – $107.50
VIPKid – $90
Earn More Writing – $79.60
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing – $67.60
Pinteresting Strategies – $51.20
Rakuten – $45
Event Planning Blueprint – $44.36
Amazon – $7.48
BookScouter – $7.45
Sittercity – $4.82
Ads – $1,626.38
EXPENSES – $62
NET INCOME – $4,508.14
I am happy that income increased A LOT when compared to the prior month. That’s an excellent start to the new year. With traffic improving, I am working more on affiliate strategies. As I mentioned in my last update, I have been aggressively working on diversifying my income, and it is working.
Even if you get loads of traffic, it will not make any difference to your affiliate income if you do not have the right affiliate marketing strategy in place.
Things I Did
A lot of things happened last month. I took a long holiday, which meant that I had to work ahead and schedule my posts. My schedulers come in handy when such things happen.
I was lucky to interview some amazingly successful people for some interesting side hustles/work-at-home opportunities. Watch out for those interviews!
Last month, two of my posts were on page one of Google for the keywords. This bumped up my organic traffic. Both of these were very long posts (more than 2,500 words). Writing such posts sure does take time, but the effort is well worth it if you want to get organic traffic.
The blogging club that I joined has been a goldmine of knowledge, and it is helping me to work on different areas of blogging, especially SEO.
What I Learned
Though blogging is location independent, I have never taken time off completely from it since I started. Last month was enough proof for me that I can pursue my passions while I earn money from my blog.
Many of my blogging readers talk about the overwhelming aspects of blogging. Well, I think if you can write good audience-focused content and promote it on social media (one or two platforms that work), that should be it.
I do not think you need to work on too many things at once when you are starting out.
I am very hopeful of good things happening this year. I will try to reach my traffic goal of 200K this year with earnings of $10K per month (I am ready for the challenge).
This year might also be the time I get into sponsorships. It will eventually diversify my income.
Focusing more on SEO and long-form content is definitely on my list.
Too many goals and too little time!
Update: All the below resources have helped me immensely to reach this point. I highly recommend them, and they can be quite helpful to all of you—no matter what stage of blogging you are at. I am happy to answer any questions you may have about these resources.
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing – This is by far the best course I have ever taken, and it has helped me with many aspects of affiliate marketing. This course is a must for anyone who is serious about making money from a blog.
Pinteresting Strategies – Carly’s Pinterest strategies helped me grow my traffic exponentially, and in turn, my income. I have tested them, and they work.
Facebook GPS – Tracie is a pro when it comes to Facebook strategies, and her course is a complete guide to growing your Facebook followers. My reach is increasing every day as I keep implementing tips from this course.
Traffic Transformation – I love Lena’s eBook for the fact that she dives into getting traffic from different social media platforms.
Strategies Worth Sharing – This is an eBook I bought even before starting my blog, and it helped me to reach 700+ likes on Facebook. With Facebook being the second biggest referral for traffic for many bloggers, you need to invest in this resource to grow your traffic.
How did you get on your blog last month? Please comment below.