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April 2013

May 10, 2013

Some pretty awesome stuff happened in April.  It was crazy fun!

First up, traffic numbers.  Over 71,000 this month!  It’s fun to go back and look at these traffic jumps.  I was so excited when I jumped from 7k to 24k in October 2012, and when I had over 50k last month.  I really did not expect to have such high numbers in April, and I think it might be tough to beat that new benchmark in May.  It does make me feel like 100k is right around the corner, though, which gives me great hope.

Social Media Following was up across the board, too.  Pinterest and Facebook especially have been growing quite fast.  I have made some progress on G+, though not as much as I had hoped.

Facebook: 959
Twitter: 930
Pinterest: 2328
Google+: 522
Instagram: 174
E-mail: 257
Klout: 62

As you can see, I made substantially more money than last month.  Not a substantial amount of money, mind you, just a big increase in percentage.  The final talley was $185.21 and here is the breakdown:

HyperX Media: 48.63
Sponsored Event: 100.00
AdSense: 28.12
Amazon: 8.46

The big earnings surprise was the Amazon account, actually.  I totally didn’t expect it.  I doubt there will be a repeat in May, either, since in the first 10 days of May, my earnings have been zero.

The sponsored event was a local health event that I got thanks to HyperX.  Working with local companies has its perks!

Lessons for April:

  • G+ is SO boring.  But it is helping my SEO.  My organic google traffic brought me around 3300 pageviews in March, and over 5100 in April.
  • I finally figured out AdSense.  Sort of.  I’m sure I still have a lot to learn, but I bit the bullet and set up one of the recommended ad sizes, and the performance has increased quite steadily.  While I did not earn anywhere near the $1 RPM that most people say is pretty easy, I did manage $0.56 RPM (rate per thousand) which is better than I have done anywhere else.  Thank you Google.
  • I need to work on staying motivated to improve my photography.  My pics this month were kind of predictable.  I picked up a couple sources of inspiration, and I’ve set a goal to push myself a little.
  • I’ve been working on increasing Facebook engagement, and I find that asking questions is great for engagement, since text only posts are seen far more widely than pic or link posts.  And the more people engage, the more people will see the pic/link posts.

One other fun development in April was that I was asked to contribute to another site.  The site owner e-mailed me, and directed me to her current site, which has over 1 million pageviews/month and a huge social media following.  She is starting a food blog, and asked me and several others to contribute.  I’m having mixed feelings about the wisdom of my jumping in, but since I have a policy to always surround myself with people who are better at this than myself, I couldn’t really say no.  Worst case scenario, I back out after a few months.  Best case, I get lots of new traffic and learn some good practices to help my own site.  And make some friends.

Accountability on last months goals:

  • Learn photoshop?  Didn’t happen.
  • Work on granola book? Didn’t happen.  I’m starting to be embarrassed about this.
  • Learn AdSense? Sorta.  I did learn some, enough to get it going, but I haven’t dived in as deep as I would like.
  • Get awesome at G+? Sorta.  I learned a few things, but I have a ton more to learn.  I am getting new followers, though not as many as I had hoped, and most of them appear to be foreign men who are far more interested in inviting me to inappropriate groups than actually visiting my dessert blog.  *sigh*

Goals for May:

  • Keep learning G+, make an effort to share or post content several times a day.
  • Make adjustments to editorial calendar.  This isn’t even optional.  I’m planning to drop down to 2 posts a week in June, since my kids will be out of school and I will need more time with them.  I need to figure out how to organize that.
  • Search out, understand, and use networks that connect brands to blogs.  I have GOT to find other ways to get paid.
  • Streamline my plugins.  If I can get rid of a few, that would be great.  I’m using WAY too many.

I guess that’s it for April!


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