I can’t believe that we are half way through 2016 already! June actually marks a big month for me because it’s my first actual month of blogging.
OKAY so I started my blog in November of 2015 however a month later, I decided to start making products to sell on etsy. While it was fun, at first, I quickly learned that it was NOT what I wanted to do. Here’s why:
- The cost to make the products was very high- I don’t have the resources to buy in bulk (wholesale) so I was at Joanns fabrics every other day. The cost to make the product was not allowing me any profit.
- The time it took to make products was unbelievable. I spent every spare second I had, all day long, at the sewing machine. I can’t do that anymore, I want to spend time with my son- I need to pay attention to him (He just started walking too!) While having a lot of orders is not a terrible problem to have, I simply couldn’t keep up by myself.
- I am not a designer, I didn’t go to school for sewing. I like sewing, and had a lot of happy customers. However, I would become sooooo frustrated at that damn machine half the time.
- I LIKE blogging, and I had absolutely NO time to do it. I don’t even think I posted a blog post the entire time I was selling on etsy.
- Etsy didn’t support me. I only had one crazy person, but etsy did absolutely nothing to defend me or help me in anyway.
So here I am, my first “real”month of blogging. I essentially started at zero. I had a few posts but almost no pageviews, or any kind of action on the site.
This monthly growth report is really just for me, and for others starting out as well. I want to see where I go with this and I want others to know where I’m at as well. I read in Ruth Soukup’s Book (How to Blog for Profit Without Selling Your Soul) “Don’t compare your beginning to someone elses middle” (quoted from Jon Acuff) and I love that quote. I look at income reports all the time of people making $20
,000 per month and I’m like “what am I doing wrong, why am I not successful?”
Well probably because I’m just beginning. My beginning started this month! Why would I be making money like that? That’s just ridiculous!
So here is my beginning. I’m sorry I don’t have exact numbers from before I started with my social media. I just had the idea for the growth report this month 🙂
So here’s what I started with:
- Page views from April 1-30: 424
- Users from April 1-30: 289
My goals for my first month:
- Unique visitors: 1,000
- Monthly page views: 2,000
- Pinterest: 300
- Facebook: 100
- Twitter: 1,500
- Instagram: 2,000
Here’s where I am actually at the end of June:
- Unique visitors: 2,114
- Monthly Page views: 4,326
- Facebook: 42
- Twitter: 1,232
- Instagram: 1,133
- Pinterest: 64
(Pinterest account had hit 300, but I deleted it to start a Pinterest Business Account, which I didn’t have before. I started the business account on 6/25)
As you can see, I more than doubled my goals for visitors and page views and had an amazing growth of +547% (according to google analytics). My social media didn’t quite hit my goals but I might have been over reaching.
Networking– I joined one niche related Facebook group and it has been awesome.
Switching pinterest over– getting serious about pinterest and having the opportunity to join a few group boards has helped. Although, it has been less than a week since I made the switch, about half the page views I received today were from pinterest (the other half from facebook).
Putting myself out there– I’m a shy person (at first) I don’t like putting myself out there. I did it though, and the results were awesome!
- Teamed up with Military Apparel Company
- Teamed up with MilSO Box
- I was added to networking groups on Pinterest, Facebook, and Tailwind
- I was able to guest post on a top blog in my niche (you can see it here)
Learning how to schedule posts (twitter, Facebook)– Being so “active” on social networks has gotten me a lot of followers. While I still tweet (& retweet) or share posts live, I LOVE being able to take a half hour in the morning to schedule all my posts for the next day or two.
Learning to use google analytics– I admittedly was awful at google analytics and I still have a lot to learn, but I do feel like I’m getting the hang of it.
Having a blog planner- being organized did wonders, if you want to see the one I have- check it out here. I printed it through staples and had it coil bound; it’s perfect!
What didn’t work:
Facebook ads and post boosts– I’m sure I would have had to spend a lot more money to get anywhere with this, I spent a total of about $35 this month on Facebook ads. While I did get some subscribers, it wasn’t much. A top blogger in my niche shared ONE of my posts on Facebook and I got 8 subscribers within minutes and the numbers only grew from there.. and that was free. While paid ads have a major “pro” of being able to control it (i.e. not having to wait around hoping someone popular shares your blog post) the “con” is that the costs can add up.
But then again, I’m still spending less than buying fabric and thread! 🙂
So here is the income breakdown:
- Direct sales of products: $14.00
- Direct sales of services: $20.00
- Ads: $0.69
Total Income: $34.69
I suppose it is not bad for my first month, as many bloggers don’t see $1 even after a year or more of blogging. I have learned a lot about content and marketing and hope the numbers go up next month. While I’m certainly not in it for the money, I’d love to be able to contribute to our finances while doing what I love and being home with my son.
My goal for the next month is to increase my social media, networking, and page views (if you are a blogger you will find that this is the only way to get income from affiliates and sponsored posts).
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