Today is a special day for me. Why? Because today (okay, maybe a week ago as I’m late on this post) I have officially been promoting my blog for one month! If you read my ‘About Me’ page, you’ll know I had started a blog over two years that I had failed to launch. At that time I just didn’t have the guts and the inspiration to dive into this big world of blogging. But, if I’m honest…this year I really started to regret my decision to quit. And the very thought of my failed blog was so excruciating that I finally decided to turn it all around. I worked on my blog for over three months getting it ready. And I’m happier than a pig in poo to say that I survived my first month blogging.
So, here is my very first Blogging and Traffic Report to share with, you, my lovelies!
What Happened My First Month Blogging (October 2017 Blog and Traffic Report)
(This post contains affiliate links that I could make commission off of. All opinions are my own 😃)
Blog Traffic – 1,693 Pageviews
So, this might not seem like a large number to most, but I am overall quite content to use this as a starting point.
We all gotta start somewhere, right?!
I didn’t have any goals for traffic in October, but I will definitely be writing my goals out for November now that I have a feel for promoting and scheduling. I’ll be happy to share my strategies once I get them figured out.
Social Media Followers + Email List Subscribers:
Email List // 18 Subscribers
Pinterest // 235 Followers (I transitioned my personal Pinterest profile for my blog which is why this amount is so high starting out. Sorry I’m not sure how many followers I had before launching!)
Facebook Page // 28 Likes
Instagram // 383 Followers (Again, this is also my personal IG account so I’ve had it for years. At the end of the month I will be sure to capture how many NEW followers I receive.)
Twitter // 27 Followers
Bloglovin // 2 Followers
Blog Income – $0
Of course, this was my first month actually promoting and marketing my posts. So, I didn’t have much expectation for earning any income. I’m not in a place where I am stressing about this because I know blogging is a long-term plan for most new bloggers (myself included).
However, I plan on continuing to monetize my site and Pinterest boards with affiliate links and testing some new display ads for the upcoming months. My goal is to, hopefully, start earning ANY amount of income within the next three months.
Crossing my fingers that I will reach that goal!
Update: Stay tuned for information in November’s upcoming blog report on a new affiliate/influencer network that I’m starting to use. It has already earned me a small commission and we’re not even mid-way through the month!
Blog Expenses/Investments – $265
I’m trying my best to keep blog expenses relatively low since I’m not bringing in any income yet. However, these are the tools that I believe are must-have (at least for me).
Adobe CC $33 (Illustrator $21.83/mo and Photoshop $10.91/mo) – I’ve gotten so used to designing my printables and blog post image layouts in Illustrator that I absolutely can’t fathom going back to a free design platform like Canva
or PicMonkey (apparently PicMonkey is no longer free 😢). Don’t get me wrong, those are great design tools for the free or low cost. But I crave the complete freedom that Adobe provides. It honestly saves me a ton of time and I love how my finished products come out so crisp and clear. As I learn more, I will definitely share some easy tutorials on my process for creating printables to use on your blog for freebies and to sell on Etsy or other creative marketplaces.
Bluehost Hosting $214 – I paid this amount for hosting back in 2015 when I had plans to start a blog with a friend of mine that, unfortunately, never launched. I paid $5.95 per month for 36 months (3 years). Next June, I will renew my hosting. So, I will have to pay the heftier price of $10.99 per month. This is the reason why you’ll want to pay the new client price for the longest term that you absolutely can to benefit from the amazing savings!
>> HAVE YOU STARTED YOUR OWN BLOG YET? Sign up for hosting with Bluehost for only $3.95 per month!
“Styled Up” Font from Creative Market $18 – I love, love, love this font. For the life of me, I couldn’t find a free font that worked out with the branding and look of my site that I was seeking. I didn’t want to spend an arm and a leg, so I took a chance on purchasing “Styled Up” from Creative Market. And I’m soooooo happy I did! I use this not only for my logo design, but I also incorporate it into most of my Pinterest images and other marketing materials for my site. It is super inexpensive for a commercial use font. And the best part is? This font set includes a total of 13 font variations! I use ALL of them and it really helps my overall branding since the fonts are slightly different, but still within the same family to keep my blog “look and style” consistent across all of my social media channels and blog posts.
Pinteresting Strategies by Carly Campbell (Mommy on Purpose) $32 – Midway through October, I started to panic after my traffic took a big downturn. Although I didn’t want to spend any more money, I had heard about Carly’s book from several other bloggers. I ended up taking a chance on this e-book since the price was so reasonable – $32 (if you guys haven’t heard of this e-book, head on over to Carly’s blog, Mommy on Purpose to take a look at her site and the reviews)! I consider it an easy read with several nuggets of information where I had a major lightbulb moment.
Fiverr $30 – Before launching in October, I had a problem with my blog menu. I still don’t know how or why it was so wonky, but the spacing would not stay consistent. I use Yellow Pencil for customizing my theme, but no matter what I did to try and repair the issue – it continued to look messy. Finally, I decided to hire someone to fix it. And it was probably one of the best $30 I spent. Islightlytly OCD when it comes to the look of my site. But, the coder I hired was able to fix it for me within a few days of my request. Easy peasy. And now I can obsess about other blog-related things! LOL.
October 2017 Top 5 Performing Blog Posts/Pages:
- Tracking Daily Habits + FREE Printable
- 10 Easy Low Carb Dinner Recipes (For Busy Weeknight Meals)
- Establish a Successful Daily Routine
- Join my Group Pinterest Boards – this is actually a page, not a post 🙂
- Secrets to Earn Cash on eBay (and Sell Your Old Clothes Fast)
In total, I promoted 14 blog posts. Most of these posts were actually published over the course of a couple months prior to launching my blog. I did this in order to make my blog appear a bit more established. If you’re following the advice of expert bloggers like I am – ALWAYS start promoting your blog with at least 10 – 15 blog posts!
I was astounded how well my first promoted blog post, Tracking Daily Habits + FREE Printable, performed. (And when I say promoted, I mean through Group Pinterest Boards and Facebook Groups). However, the traffic died down after a week and a half and I haven’t been able to get quite as much traction with my other posts. I’m going to play around with my repinning methods to Group Boards through the use of Tailwind to see if I can liven it back up a little.
My Current Favorite Blogging and Affiliate Tools:
Mailerlite – I can’t believe how easy ML is to use! I’ll definitely be writing a blog post for this email service. Anyone up for a tutorial on this?
Adobe CC (for Illustrator + Photoshop) – Oh how I love to learn more about these design and photo editing programs. I’m still learning many of the tools in Photoshop, but my Illustrator game is getting stronger. I use it to design just about everything…from blog post images and my logo to free wall printables and social media header images.
Tailwind – I highly recommend Tailwind for new bloggers. At first sight, the site was a bit complicated. And I didn’t understand how the features worked. But, I’m getting better at understanding how it can really benefit my pinning process. I mainly use it for Tailwind Tribes and pinning my own pins to group boards with relative ease. Try Tailwind for FREE your first month if you haven’t already gotten on this awesome bandwagon.
Boardbooster – My 2nd favorite scheduler, but worth the $5 that I’ll start paying this month (you get the first month for a free trial)! I use it to further help me with pinning other people’s pins from group boards through the ‘Campaigns’ feature. It’s important to stay active so everyone in group boards benefit and Boardbooster does just that. I heard good things about looping, but I haven’t really figured out how to use it since it only works on group boards that I belong to. Can anyone explain it to me? Thanks!
Pinteresting Strategies – My one and only e-book that I have bought thus far. It’s only $32 and a wonderful strategy to get more blog traffic from Pinterest. I’ve read through it twice already and about to read it for the third time so I can develop and design my own printables using this strategy.
Creative Market – You probably saw in my expenses section that I bought a font for $18 on Creative Market. I was so hesitant to purchase anything for my blog, but it really has enhanced my branding. And, now, I’ve got a ton of CM products on my Wish List to help me level-up my designs for the coming months.
Fiverr – Fiverr was a godsend for what I needed! Anything small or large, I can guarantee you’ll find someone on Fiverr to help you. No longer are the days lingering on Facebook Groups and asking your friends to help you with a coding or design problem. I know absolutely zilch regarding coding so I’ll refer to the professionals to help me so I can focus all my attention on creating new content and marketing. Gotta stick to my talents so to speak.
Viglink – For a while, this Affiliate Network really stumped me. I honestly wasn’t sure exactly how to monetize my site with it. However, after some much-needed research, I think I really hit the jackpot with Viglink. There are hundreds of merchants to sort through! So, you’re bound to find affiliate merchants to fit with your blog niches. And the cool part? New bloggers can monetize with most merchants. So far, there are two merchants that I wanted to affiliate with and was, unfortunately, not eligible. One of the merchants was Etsy and the other one escaped my brain – lol it happens!
Goals for November 2017
Write a total of 20 blog posts + publish at least 12 new blog posts
I recently found a new affiliate site! In the next week look out for some fashion and gift guide posts for the holiday season.
I’d also love to get a head start on December’s content if my schedule allows, which is why I’m planning on writing 8 additional posts. Crossing fingers I’ll be super productive!
Blog Traffic: 2,500 Pageviews
I’m hoping for at least 800 more pageviews than I had last month. With it being a couple of weeks in, I’m on track to get there as long as I can pin consistently and promote my content on more group boards.
Group Boards: 10 New Boards
Currently, I am contributing to a total of 20 group boards. If I’m being honest, I could probably devote a smidge more time to sending emails to the board owners. However, I’ve been lazy in this task, so I’ll be working on this effort heavily this month.
By the way, if you’re looking for any group boards to join, submit your request for an invite to my group Pinterest boards here!
Create at least 5 new Pinterest boards with affiliate products
I have been pretty lax on my affiliate game. But, that changes this month. I’ve already started using a new affiliate site and it’s seriously rocking my world. Stay tuned for the breakdown in next month’s report. Or, I may just write a whole blog post about it. Who knows!
Dedicate more time to develop my Blog Resource Library
Before launching my blog, I kept a huge reference of links, blog post tutorials and resources from sites and other bloggers. I currently have over 205 items for the library! I’d love to share it with you soon, so stay tuned for it within the next month or so.
I want to thank you for reading the report for my first month blogging. It means the world to me that I actually have readers! Even though I’m not making any income yet, I feel so happy to have a place to get my thoughts and ideas out there.
By the way, are you a blogger? If so, please let me know in the comments! I’m looking for passionate bloggers to connect with and, maybe, start a joint Facebook Group with.