If I had to pick a term to describe our 42nd-month blogging, it would be “consistent growth”. Although we didn’t get any big features this month, we did have fairly consistent pageviews and users over the course of the month.
Our strategies for maintaining views during the spring and summer seem to be working, and we are going to continue on the path of being an eclectic website that people visit for a variety of reasons.
42nd Month Update
As I said above, our readership was consistent this month. A big win is that we didn’t have any days with under 200 users, even over the weekends and holidays. It may have been because Memorial Day Weekend was strikingly cold, or it may have been because our mix of content is valuable in all seasons. It’s probably a mixture of both, but I’ll take it!
Over 60% of our traffic this period was from organic search. We are still trying really hard to get to 5000 organic users per month, and we’re so close! I’m sure we will get there in the next few months.
Our top organic traffic driver remains “How to be a Twitch Affiliate”, with about 20% of the organic users finding us via this post. I’m a little surprised, because Twitch and gaming content doesn’t tend to do as well in the summer as people move outside, but I’ll take it!
I love to see my top posts spanning a variety of niches, and I hope to improve upon that in future months by getting some art, travel, and wellness posts ranking as well.
Our second biggest traffic driver this period was direct hits. People are coming to us from our email list and never miss a post. Be sure to sign up!
Overall, 1600 users visited us via Direct referral this month, and I’m sure not all of those are from the email list. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of additional information on where those users came from, but I’m glad they found me!
About 700 people came to us via referral traffic this period, which is pretty good considering we didn’t have any big features. We’re still getting a ton of visitors via Github for some reason – nearly half of our referrals are from that network. Thank you to whoever posted our link there!!
We had nearly 100 users visiting us from MSN, which was due to lingering effects from last month’s feature, and a handful of users from a variety of other websites. Getting your links out there is a great way to not only build your SEO, but also to get some random referral traffic!
Our social media reach is lacking. We only had about 300 users finding us via social media this period, which is far less than last month. Unfortunately, we don’t have the bandwidth to focus on all the things, and social media suffered for it.
The majority of our social media users came to us via Pinterest, which is pretty cool considering that I may have posted two pins this month. We had a little over 100 users finding us from the platform.
I know I need to pin more to get referrals from the network, but I just don’t have the time or energy. I make pins and they sit in my folder, unpinned and unloved. I’ll even spend twenty minutes or so every few weeks pinning some of them, but as the algorithm adjusts, that just isn’t enough. Pinterest gives love to those who post a lot, and that won’t be me any time soon. I’m okay with that.
Twitter and Facebook
We had barely 100 users visiting us from these two networks combined this month. I still don’t do anything with Facebook other than letting Revive Old Posts do its thing (I don’t think I even published my fresh content on the platform this month) so it’s not surprising that I haven’t gotten a lot of love from it.
A few more users found us from Twitter, which makes sense because it’s the one social media platform I’m actually trying to grow. However, I’m not growing it to get pageviews. It’s more of a networking tool for me, and that’s how I tend to use it.
Partners in Fire published some epic content this month that I’m really excited about. My favorite post was the traditional finance post related to sabbatical leave. It may not be inherently about money, but it’s about a work benefit that would drastically improve many people’s work-life balance, and it’s an important thing to consider.
We rounded out our epic series on Discord with a huge piece on Discord Communities. For this piece, we used a HARO request to ask people from a variety of sources how they use the platform. The answers were wide-ranging and sometimes unexpected. It’s cool to see how so many people have used the app in so many different ways.
Next, we focused on some good old-fashioned summer fun, with a comprehensive post on fun things to do with friends. We researched over 50 fun and exciting activities for you to do this summer ranging from free to expensive, outside to indoors, and everything in between. There is no excuse for being bored this summer!
We also published another post related to journaling this month, with an impressive post on journaling prompts. This is an important piece because we opened an Etsy store and are selling some awesome prompts for low prices! The post also includes some free ones, so you can get an idea of the types of prompts available in the shop before purchasing.
Our final post of the month was a piece on gaming, specifically written for folks who want to stream from the Nintendo Switch. Although this piece is probably not useful to the majority of our readers, it is an important topic for those few who need it.
How Are We Going to Improve Our Readership?
SEO SEO and more SEO! Seriously. The best way to improve readership is improving SEO. We want to get to the top of Google in a variety of niches!
One of the hardest parts of SEO is link-building, and that’s where we are focused. I’ve joined some Facebook designed to help with that, and also have been doing a ton of cold outreach to fellow bloggers asking if I can guest post.
I know how annoying that is. I ignore all those emails as well. But, most of the ones I get are from marketing companies who don’t know a thing about my site. I’m more willing to work with bloggers who have actually read my short blurb about working together (only 2 people ever have) so I was hoping I might be able to connect with a few. So far, no dice. I’ve reached out to maybe 20 bloggers in a variety of niches, but haven’t gotten a single response. I’m going to keep trying though.
One of the best things I ever did to help improve my SEO game was to join the Money Mix Insider’s SEO Hustle program. Not only do they offer a mastermind group dedicated to helping with every part of the blogging journey, but they also offer some really great SEO tools to help you with on-page SEO, and help you get your content syndicated on other websites. It’s been such a great experience and has helped me immensely. I like it so much that I even do the onboarding calls for the group!
It takes money to make money, right? I really hope so. Because I’ve been spending a ton of money on growing my blog this year, and not making a thing in return. My ad network is horrible, with RPMs barely above Google Adsense. I don’t have enough traffic to get into the higher-paying networks yet. I made zero affiliate sales this month, and my Etsy store doesn’t have enough products yet to take off.
Let’s call this “building mode”.
I’m really excited about the new product that I’m about to launch in my Etsy store. It’s under review right now by a few of my trusted associates, but after that’s done it’s going to be made available. I think this product relates well to my brand, and I can’t wait!! I have more ideas and other products that I’m working on as well, so as to not put all of my monetization eggs into the blog basket, though I’m hopeful that the blog will start making money soon.
My goal is still to get 30K pageviews by July, but seeing as that’s only a month away, I’m not confident that we will be able to reach it. But I have no doubt that we will reach it by the fall! Be sure to follow along with our journey and find out!
Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.