Time sure flies by when you’re blogging and having fun! I can’t believe that it’s been almost six months since I first started my blog. So far it’s been a rather enjoyable experience. I’ve continued to post semi-regularly, met and interacted with a number of other personal finance bloggers, and continue to see a gradual increase in traffic and page views. Things haven’t been all sunshine and rainbows, however, as I’ve had my share of blog fails. Read on to see how things started, how I’ve done, and what I plan to do.
Birth of a Blog – The First Month
My blog was officially born on September 16, 2016. I started out using a free WordPress.com account thinking that I would just test out the waters for a bit (more on this later). I was able to publish three posts by the end of September. My efforts were rewarded by a whopping four visitors and six page views. Big time! I still remember how giddy I was when I got that first view. To be honest, I don’t know how anyone found my blog… let alone four people. I wasn’t actively networking or promoting my site at the time. But hey, I’ll take it!
The Statistics – Slow and Steady
The great thing about starting at the bottom is that there is no other way to go but up. And up I went. Although not spectacular, my stats have increased steadily. I don’t have any specific goals in terms of page views or visitors per month. Instead I’m hoping for month over month increases, which I have been experiencing on a consistent basis. Also, I don’t post too frequently. I average about one post per week, two if I’m lucky. Family and work still require a decent chunk of my time, so all things considered I’m pretty happy with how things are going at the moment.
Some other site stats:
Total posts: 29 (counting this one)
Total pages: 12
Total comments: 242 (about half are mine, though)
Most popular day: Monday
Most popular hour: 6pm
Six Month Recap
As I said in the beginning, my experience has overall been a positive one. I’ve seen steady month-over-month increases in both views and visitors. My posts have seen a decent number of comments, which I totally appreciate by the way. And I actually think that my writing has improved compared to when I first started. I would consider all of these as blogging wins.
That being said, I did have some blogging fails as well. Looking back, I probably should have skipped the free WordPress.com account and started with a dedicated domain and web hosting site. I guess I thought I would lose interest at some point and stop writing, but that hasn’t happened yet. While transitioning to an official site wasn’t a problem (essentially WordPress to WordPress), it did cause issues with various links to my posts. To this day, I still get a trickle of traffic on my old website as a result of those old links floating in the vast space of the internet.
Another fail was when I tried to “optimize” my posts for SEO (search engine optimization). I altered all of the URL addresses which, not surprisingly, messed up all of my links. I didn’t catch it for several days, so I’m certain that some people clicked on these broken links and were taken to non-existent pages. It took me a while to fix the problem. Unfortunately, I can’t address any external links from other blogs. Oh well.
I think that my blog still has a lot of life left in it. My main focus going forward will be to continue the growth in terms of views and visitors, but at a faster rate. My tentative plans are as follows:
Increase frequency of posts
The key to increasing the growth of my blog is to put out more content. One of my 2017 goals for this blog was to be able to post twice a week by the middle of the year. The limiting factor at this point is time. Right now I’m balancing between family life, work, and this blog. Although I would like to publish more frequently, I also want to make sure that I write quality stuff and not just post for the sake of posting. I should be able to hit my two-posts-a-week goal once things settle down a bit in the SRGO household.
Another way that I could increase traffic is to guest post on another blog. Again, I would want to submit a quality post, so this will have to wait until I’m given the gift of more time. Since I should set a goal, I’ll shoot for the middle of the year as well.
Up my social media game
I do have a Twitter account, but I think that I can be more active on that platform. Not only in regards to promoting my blog, but also sharing and tweeting about articles from other authors. I also have a Facebook page which I have been neglecting. I haven’t received many clicks or referrals from that page. Unless any of you out there have any Facebook pro tips, I think I’ll continue to neglect that particular platform. Lastly, I want to eventually figure out Pinterest.
Finally, I want to thank each and every person who has visited my little site. I am truly thankful that you would take the time out of your busy day to read what I have to write. As always, I am open to any of your thoughts and suggestions. Let me know in the comments below.