It’s hard to believe I have been blogging for over a year. It’s amazing the things I’ve learned over the course of the year. First off, blogging is easier and harder than you think. I think it’s easy to come into blogging with the fantasy of being able to rake in multiple streams of income right away. While this is totally possible, it’s more of the exception than the rule.
To help encourage us on our journey, we purchase informational products that we think are awesome, only to find they are subpar and don’t offer much to help us achieve our goals. It’s so important to find good mentors and bloggers you can trust for product and services recommendations. There were many times I felt the only bloggers making money were the ones talking about blogging. Again, this circles back to blogging being harder, and easier then you think. But the bottom line, I learned.
As mommy bloggers we are not going to create a few posts, throw up some Amazon links, and earn enough money to stay home with our children. We must have a strategy for our blogs, and a plan to monetize.
A few months ago, I purchased the Ultimate Bundles Genius Blogger Toolkit. Some of my favorite bloggers were offering information that would be in this bundle. Did you get all the emails? I caved and bought it!
Finally, it was a chance to get a ton of great advice from top bloggers at a great price. This really is the way to go because you can tell which bloggers you may want to purchase from in the future. It’s a great trial run! There was also loads of information that really helped me get focused.
After blogging for over a year, I had no direction and quite frankly, I was just doing it for fun. Once I committed to focus on my blog, and look at it as a business, not a hobby, my efforts became more focused, and my blog got better. My biggest takeaway, look at your blog as a business.
Other Key Takeaways
Track your Stats
Tracking your stats is important for counting those small wins we really need as bloggers. I started tracking my stats in September. I made a very simple excel chart and each month, on the first of the month, I fill in my monthly stats for the previous 30 days. The following is what I track:
Pinterest: page views, followers, and repin rates. How many people are seeing my pins, repining them and following me on Pinterest. In September, I was around 30,000 impressions, since implementing some changes, I am currently at 647,000!! This huge jump has led to a big increase in my google sessions and page views. I went over how I got my increase under my post 7 secrets to becoming a mom blogger superstar.
I really saw a huge benefit when I signed up for tailwind. A lot has to do with your pinning strategies. Tailwind allowed me to schedule pins automatically and create very specific categories for my pins to be delivered to, for instance mom blogs, baby, food, etc. This is far easier then manual pinning. Although I do that to.
Pinterest accounts for over 95% of my traffic. Even before blogging, this is where I spent my time. (I am just really bad with social media.) Tailwind helps me deliver my blog posts to over 30+ group boards that takes to long to do manually. If you have’t joined group boards. Do this first. One mistake I made when I first started blogging is I would schedule my pins to my own boards. While I may want to do it once, I don’t want to spam my own boards. Which is what was happening. I wasn’t adding enough other new content to prevent it from being the same pin over and over. Group boards generally have lots of people pinning to them. You can add a pin more then once over a month or two because there is so much activity going on. This allows you to get your blog posts in front of lots of eyeballs.
Google Analytics: sessions and page views. By implementing Pinterest strategies, i.e. Tailwind, I bumped my websites page views up from 1500 to 10,000 in two months. I am hoping to finish December off with close to 20,000 page views. My goal is to be able to apply to Media Vine by April next year.
Email List subscribers – How many new subscribers I have had for the month. Since starting my email list in September, I am now close to 200 subscribers. This is because of freebies I offer, such as my 2017 Christmas Planner or my Ultimate Guide to Meal Planning. When I first started out blogging, I did not see the value in having an email list, but your email list is the easiest way to connect directly to your reader (Duh! Why did this take me so long to figure out?) This is still so new to me, but I look forward to more learning, and sharing, with you guys!
Alexa Rank – How popular my website is compared to other websites. As you add more pins, share more on social media, and link into other sites, your Alexa rank will increase.
Create Gift Guides
November and December are the months for gift guides. It was a lot of fun coming up with different gift guides. I always see a huge increase in clicks through my Amazon account, which results in more sales. Gift guides are a definite must for the holidays! Plus, they are so fun to put together! I love getting creative with these. One of my favorites is Stocking Stuffers for the Crazy Cat Lady.
Set Specific Goals for Each Day
Since time can be very limited as a mom blogger, I set specific goals for each day. For instance, one day it will be to send out a newsletter blast. Another, it will be to start a new post. I am much more successful having one or two action items. I also have a breakdown of my work for the month. This helps me sit down and have a few focused hours with an end goal in mind. I mean it’s so easy to go down the social media rabbit hole. Especially on Pinterest, right?!
What I am Working on for January:
Site Maps: I am currently working on some pillar posts that will act as site maps for key topics of my blogging. Living on One Income as a SAHM, Modern Motherhood, and Household Management. These are long posts that will include popular links and resources and allow me to get in opt ins for my email freebies.
New Freebie for the New Year: With the Christmas season coming to an end, my email freebie, a 2017 Christmas Planner, will need to be updated. The new year means, no Christmas planning, so back to my Ultimate Meal Planner Printable for my freebie. This needs a new year sprucing up, which I am looking forward to.
Creating Guest Posts: Guests posts are something that bring in lots of foot traffic and get you exposed. Come the new year I am planning to try and get one guest post published.
Lots of Additional Content to Modern Mom: Being 7 months pregnant, there is tons of nesting going on in this household, not to mention life with a two-year-old brings new learning experiences everyday (potty training, clothing choices, Christmas!) There will be lots of content on preparing for a second baby and life adjustments with a toddler.
New Year, New Goals
I am looking forward to the New Year and new blogging goals. I thought it would be nice to do a mid-month check in with other fellow bloggers. Do you have new year’s goals for your blog? What are your key takeaways from blogging?