July 2019: Blog Monthly Report
Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I may receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.
Now that one of the sites has grown over 1000 visitors per month, I thought I’d start doing monthly updates. Hopefully the sites continue to grow and the figure will get more interesting for you guys to read. I personally am getting super excited to see how my income and traffic will grow, now that I have more time and motivation to work on the sites.
I also launched another blog in July with 10 articles. It’ll be referred to as site #3 and you can find see more details below.
Disclaimer: Just a quick reminder before I go into the updates. I’m am doing next to nothing to promote these sites, I SEO them and make a pin, that’s it. SEO pays off in roughly 6 months time and pins normally begin to take off after 42 days or so.
My energy was split between articles for 3 sites this month, as well as prepping some articles for another site. If you are focusing on one blog you should be easily able to beat this traffic by this month. So don’t let my figures discourage you from starting a blog.
And finally, please note that the Quarter 1 & 2 updates included the 3 monthly figure, while moving forward I’ll be including the monthly figure.
Site #1: General Travel Blog
While growth is still slow, SEO traffic is steadily climbing. The articles that I moved over from my prior blog are gaining rankings, and I’m hoping that once I get some serious link building done and my DA grows, that many of them will go back to getting the SEO traffic they were getting prior.
Daily traffic: 16-22 on average
DA: Still 16
New articles this month: 2
Site #2 Travel Niche Blog
Site #2 is chugging along and is the most trafficked out of the four despite having a third of the articles site #1 has. This site is surviving off Pinterest traffic but is started to get a little SEO traffic.
I’ve focused more on Pinterest traffic for this site as I know the niche will do well on Pinterest. SEO is something I’ll likely go back to do once this site has a DA above 20. Luckily this site has the keyword in its domain name show I’m hoping the articles will get a bit of a boost through relevancy in the long term.
Daily traffic: High 40’s to low 50’s
New articles this month: 2
Site #3 Destination Blog (Month 1)
Launching with 5 articles at the start of the month I’ve been able to write quite a few in July (mostly started by the writers). Already this site seems like its going better than the more general site #1. I am prioritising this site with my writers and I hope to get 50 articles up quickly to make the site useful for anyone who stumbles upon it.
I’m not sure how this site will do on Pinterest so just to be safe I’m focusing on SEO and relevancy. While at the moment Pinterest is accounting for 80% of the traffic, its hard to see if that’s a fluke or not with such small amounts of traffic. It is not one of the countries that is super popular on Pinterest, but is a relatively popular tourist destination.
Daily traffic: 4 on average
New articles this month: 10
Site #2 Travel Niche Blog
*Earned but not paid = USD40
I’m going to switch my earnings into money I actually receive this month, with an asterisk underneath showing what I’ve earned this month but will be paid at a later date.
I have to say that its amazing I can make more from affiliate marketing on a site with 1500 visitors a month than when my old site had 11,000 – 25,000 a month. It really goes to show the following:
- Making sure you have actually put the affiliate links in rather than thinking its too hard or procrastinating
- Write articles that are suited to affiliate marketing
- Pick a site topic that will do well in Pinterest and suits affiliate sales
Honestly, I only just realised that Amazon has started paying me commissions into my Payoneer account. I never really checked before as I assumed they had a higher payout.
While $40 doesn’t seem like a lot I can’t tell you how exciting it is to earn any amount from your blogs! It feels so much better with affiliates earnings too as its a bit more constant and I feel confident I could magnify it.
Sites #1 & 3
These sites have not made any income this month.
Honestly I’m really happy with my new writers, or should I say ghost writers. They’re both professional, friendly, prompt and the articles are always quite good. I don’t get them to write a ‘finished product’, instead I tell them the headings I want them to write and they do so up to the word limit I’ve set. I then finish the rest.
Its not the same as hiring a traditional writer, but it suits my situation best. I want to have my voice in the articles (and love writing myself), but I constantly put off writing as I hate doing the research parts of the article. By hiring others to do the annoying research phase / bulk of the article I get all the fun parts to myself.
I’m spending roughly AUD120 (which may be roughly USD95-100) a fortnight on writers. I’m paying for this out of my day job pay, and its not an amount I even notice as I started doing it around my last pay rise.
If you ask about hiring writers in the travel blogging groups you’ll get quoted much higher amounts for writers and made to feel bad if you hire internationally for smaller amounts. Hence, I didn’t bother asking in the groups for what I should be paying, just checked out the rates on Upwork, and paid accordingly.
And incase you’re wondering no, I don’t have ghost writers for this site.
I may have accidentally bought AUD300 worth of stock photos. I mean, I was intending to buy a promo package, then decided I’d wait a while, but accidentally clicked buy. I am glad i have them as it helps filling out articles on my destination site when I don’t have a photo for every single little place. Again, this comes out of my day job earnings, so I just put less in my savings this fortnight.
Not explicitly blog related, but we brought a new couch and I decided that I was going to move it down the hall into the spare bedroom until the box cutters arrived. This box housed a three seater recliner, so as you could imagine its pretty big so hard to move around.
I managed to move it half way down the hallway lying on its side until it got stuck on the vacuum cleaner. I squeezed past the side flap of the box (its pretty tight against the hallway walls) and walked down the inside to move the vacuum cleaner out of the way.
Guess who then couldn’t get back out and had to karate quick down the sides of the box to escape?
It was an ordeal, let me tell you that.
Imagine an idiot getting trapped inside a cardboard box that’s jammed inside a hallway. That’s me circa a few days ago.
Apart from that nothing has gone wrong this week. I was a bit off track early this month catching up with everyone after Borneo, but by the 20th I started plowing out some articles. I feel like I’m finally getting my motivation back.
I feel like I’m getting my motivation back and I’m really happy about it. I think it was a mix of holy fuck, how do people survive off only 4 weeks of holidays a year, and realising I need to work harder now to get a high enough income by the time I want to quit my job.
Planning a trip for two weeks when you’re used to having all the time in the world is stressful, and its a shock having that freedom taken away.
Also with spending my time doing actual work on these sites (Writing articles) and not procrastinating, I still have a bunch of free time on my hands. We all went out to see a friend’s play on the 3rd weekend of July and I made two pretty awesome posters for him. This inspired me to buy extra paper to create a vision board.
Lately I’ve gotten really into reading about synchronicity, and I thought that creating a vision board would be something else I could do along those lines. I haven’t completed it as of writing this post, so I’ll try and share my business one with you in the next monthly report.
Plans for Month 8
Last quarters plans:
- I have sort of been finishing my writer articles, in fact I’m 50% all caught up for July and even wrote a bunch of my own on top of that. I uploaded 14 articles this month in total across the three websites.
- I added a bunch of affiliate links into my sites this month so mission accomplished. I noticed a jump in my click throughs pretty much immediately. I am yet to finish adding them to site #1 though.
- I did launch a new site as planned, a destination site (See above), but not two sites.
- I did not do any link building though. Nor did site #1 did not get any affiliate clicks as I think it needs more traffic (its not as well suited as site #2) and links in.
- Upload 10+ articles a fortnight
- Earn $45+ in income
- Increase traffic by 10% on all three tracked sites
- Focus on Pinterest worthy articles
- Do 30 link builds
- Mass order 50 articles (Seo)
- Develop and stick to Pinterest promo strategy