Tag Archives: blog traffic

Blatant Mercantile Post – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Why do people blog? Well, there are a lot of reasons. To connect. To create. To express……..TO MAKE MONEY. I have no idea how many people are into blogging purely, or even largely, to make money but let’s not ignore that motivation. It would be unfair to my class to ignore this aspect of the blogging world. It isn’t all about driving traffic……..well, even the money makers need traffic to make money.

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I did try to google how many bloggers make money, because I can’t believe it is very many of them……ah……us. There are just too many of us blogging and too many of us are not consistent. And since income from blogging is frequently related to generating blogging traffic, I have a hard time believing inconsistent blogs are generating traffic. Additionally, I am a student of human motivation. If you were making money by blogging, and I mean making a reasonably large amount of money blogging then you are more likely to be a consistent blogger. At least, that makes sense to me.

I couldn’t find any believable statistics on bloggers making money from blogging. I suspect is it a lot like MLM, i.e. Multi-Level Marketing……i.e. Avon, Sentsy and PartyLite…where there are a few who make a lot of many and then there are the many to make nothing or just above nothing.

During this 30 Blogging Challenge, I have moved up a rung in the money making from a blog ladder. I have official moved up from being one of the (I suspect) many bloggers who have made nothing from either blog to a blogger who has made just above nothing from their blog.

That’s a whole one penny made from blogging. It is my first and very special to me. I never had advertising turned on……well, I thought I did but I didn’t actually set it up correctly. I never cared because the blog wasn’t about making money and I didn’t do much to generate blog traffic. I do have to admit that it feels really nice.

My traffic yesterday was from a huge boost in SEM traffic. I had increased my daily budget, as well as expanded my geographic reach to include India. I went from 2 unique visitors on Friday to over 50 on Saturday based, almost entirely, on adwords results. How much did it cost me to bring in those 50+ people? $3.42. So to generate enough blog traffic to earn $0.01, it cost me $3.42!!!! That isn’t a formula for success that I can scale…….at least, not without taking a second mortgage.

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Earning income from blogging comes from several different sources and advertising isn’t one of the most profitable. It is really easy though. At least to make $0.01, it is easy. It probably isn’t as easy to make $10,000 a month from advertising though. I believe that most of the blogging income comes from either selling access or selling information. A lot of the profitable blogs earn the majority of income by selling eBooks or training…….ironically a lot of them are about how to make money blogging. Yup, just like MLM.

Another major way for earning an income from blogging, i.e. turning the blog traffic you generated into blogging income is through affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is basically becoming a referral service. You refer your blogging traffic from your blog to another blog or website that is selling something. WordPress makes it very easy. Once you have a blog, just sign up from your dashboard. They will post available affiliate marketing links. Run a post……or a lot of posts about whatever they are selling. Include a special link that they provide to you that will allow them to track back any purchases to your blog. Then you get money for every purchase. Keep in mind that you normally only get paid if someone actually clicks on your link and then BUYS something. You don’t get paid just for traffic.

See the source image

This is my first affiliate blog post. Note that I’m not doing most of I would be doing if my goal was actually to make money on the affiliate program with this post. For example, I’ve buried the offer deep within the post and I’m only posting about it once. I’m not specifically making any effort to promote this specific post either. So, what am I (actually wordpress) offering?

20% off a WordPress plan by using promo code DISCOUNT20 when you click here. Oh, by the way, this discount is only good through August 31st. And that is affiliate marketing. I’ll let you know how it works. By the way, WordPress sent me an email alerting me to the discount. There are other available affiliate programs available but they don’t currently have a discount……I figured everyone loves a sale.

30 Day Blogging Challenge Update: We are up to 342 unique visitors this month as of this moment. That is up from around 30 unique visitors that I would have had on this blog without the challenge. This weekend, I changed my SEM (my adwords account) to include UK, Greenland and India and increased my daily budget. The impact was immediate and huge.

Literally within 15 minutes of making those changes, my blog traffic shot through the roof. Where I was struggling to get 20 people a day, in 15 minutes, I had over 50 people from India. Namaste. I actually turned my daily amount down again in the budget tool, which killed my traffic for the rest of the day. I was concerned that I was going to blow through my budget in a few minutes. I turned up the budget again this morning and I had 80 people from India come visit. Since my blog has nothing to do with geographic relevance, it doesn’t matter to me if they are from Ghana, India or Toledo.

Hey, at this rate, maybe I’ll make $0.02 today.

Please give a like and share this post if you like the material, want to see where this challenge goes or just simply want to support the cause. Don’t forget to follow the blog.

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Apparently I’m huge in Ghana – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Ghana is a land of 30 million people on the ivory coast in Africa. They have a growing blended digital and industrial based economy. They’ve launched a satellite in 2017 and apparently they are huge fans of my blog. Here’s a shout out to my Ghanaian readers…….OK, I had to lookup “Ghanaian.” At least, that’s what happened after I started using Adwords in an attempt to drive blog traffic.

I’ve been watching the region my traffic has been coming from. Last year, the majority of my traffic came from the US and Canada. Makes sense. I’m in the US, writing in English and most of my contacts are either US or Canadian. When I assigned myself this challenge to generate more blog traffic, I started seeing a spike in traffic from India. OK, I thought. I have my blogged linked directly with my Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. I have friends and associates from India. Huge population. Lots of English speakers…..ok, maybe I was picking up readers from their contacts. If so, welcome. Happy to have you. Everyone, whether you are from Ghana or India or U.S.A. or anywhere else, leave a comment with your country name. It would be very interesting to see whether your comments match with the blog statistics.

I started using Adwords to drive traffic, suddenly Ghana became a top source of traffic for me. On my ad, I did specifically include U.S. and Canada as my target regions. Unfortunately, I only have the “premium” WordPress account and can’t install Google Analytics. Therefore, I can’t tell specifically if my Ghanaian traffic is coming from the ad or not but the coincidence is pretty significant. Now that I’m putting my words down in the blog, I’m not sure why I limited advertising to just US and Canada. If there is an English speaker in the middle of Asia who wants to read my blog, please do.

Just to see what happens to my blog traffic, I just went into Adwords and added United Kingdom, Australia and India. Just in case the U.S. does buy it, I added Greenland too. Having your country sold out from under you can be a bit disconcerting, so I want to be especially welcoming to any Greenlanders reading.

I’ll report back in a few days to if any insights. Oh, I almost forgot. My adwords budgets was only $5 a day for a month. I’ve increased that to $20 a day. I figure I’ll leave it there for a few days. I’m still trying to get as many unique visitors within my 30 day challenge, although at this point to hit my 1000 visitor target, I’m going to need 700 people to suddenly find me on the last day. Hey, please help out, if you can. Hit the like and share buttons. Who knows, maybe you know someone in Ghana who has not yet discovered my blog.

30 Day blogging Challenge Update: This has been a great experience already and I still have a week to go. I’ve had over 200 unique visitors this month already…..not bad considering that I only averaged 50 or so a month for the last year. Admittedly, I think I only posted two or three times this calendar year before I started the challenge. Actually, I just checked. I only posted once this year. It was a nice little post that got a little spike in traffic and a lot (for me) of likes. Please check it out if you are interested. It has been a lot of effort, just for an additional 150 people but I do think it will have a lasting impact, should I choose to continue posting.

At this point, I think once the challenge is over, I’ll keep posting around one post a week. My new niche, as wide as it is, will be posting about the content I’m presenting to my Foundations of Marketing class. I have to prepare for them each week anyway, so I can put together a few hundred words about the topic of the week pretty easily.

I’ve read a lot about SEO this month and I’m still unsure. Is it better to post frequently with smaller posts or to post less frequently but with longer posts? For example, if you are going to write 2000 words a week, then are you better off writing once a week a 2000 word post or writing four times a week with 500 word posts? I’ve read that the SEO spiders like the longer posts better and you can get a better SERP page ranking for your post with a post of, at least, 2000 words. On the other hand, the smaller posts are quick reads. Easier to maintain a regular schedule and each post has a chance to connect with your followers. If you already have a 1000 followers, pinging them every other day with an enjoyable quick read might be just the thing to keep them coming back. I guess the biggest factor is what will you actually do. If writing something, anything, every other day is daunting, then try to make a longer post weekly. If the idea of a massive post scares the heck out of you, then focus on smaller posts but more frequently. For the record, including this sentence, this post is right about 900 words. It is not going to dominate any SERP positions I guess but I feel like it is long enough. Trying to double my word count here seems like it would be a very long read. Hopefully, you enjoyed it and will give a like and a share and even leave a comment, even if it is just telling me where you are from.

Generating Blog Traffic With Adwords – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Update: Day 15 and Post 5 of the 30 Day Blogging Challenge. I’m averaging a post every 3 days. My original goal was every other day…..I’ll have to up the effort a bit. That is especially important considering how blog traffic generation is tied to the days I post. See here:

Those unique visitor traffic spikes on August 3rd, 5th, 9th and 13th are the days that I posted on my blog. Those days with one to three unique visitors are the days that I didn’t generate a blog post. Two things come to mind looking at this. First, I need to post more regularly to generate traffic. Every other day isn’t sustainable during the school year as I go into professor mode but I can sustain that for the rest of August. Second, my blog traffic is coming from very short term sources. My blog is linked into my LinkedIn account and Facebook. The majority of my blog traffic is being generated from these sites. WordPress reader is a distant third. Notice how my blog traffic isn’t being generated by search terms…..yet? My traffic is coming largely from my network with a few supporting shares from readers…..(thank you and please continue to like and share.) Getting traction on search engines take time. Coral Ouellette suggests it takes three to six months before search engines will notice all the hard work you have done on your blog. This suggests that the work I’m doing now will really start to pay off in the fourth quarter in terms of generating blog traffic. Therefore, since my challenge is generating unique visitors in August, I need to take other actions……i.e. Google Adwords.

Paid search, in my opinion, works best for websites and blogs that earn their income directly. That is, instead of relying on blog traffic generating ad income, the website is selling something – whether or product or a service. Figure each unique visitor will cost you in the neighborhood of $2 to $3 each. Unless you are converting people with a sale in excess of that, the ROI just isn’t there. In the long run, search engines is the best source of new traffic…..of course, you need to stay on top of your current readership and provide content and communication so that they continue to come back. I just don’t have 3 to 6 months to wait in a 30 day challenge to generate traffic.

My blog is on wordpress. WordPress offers business and premium subscribers a $125 Google adwords credit when you chip in $25 of your own. I’m taking advantage of that. Setting up an adwords ad is really rather easy. Once you put in your website, the tool starts making recommendations. I didn’t go with very many of them….I’m just that kind of guy…but it was nice to have a starting point. It took about five minutes and I don’t think it looks too bad. What do you think?

If you tried to click the picture above……the ad text is motivating enough but you don’t need to click the add because you are already here. Since this month is all about the blogging challenge, I focused my ad on that. Google helped suggest words to use. They are all around blogging and generating traffic and I’ve directed the traffic to all go to my main page.

The ad should kick off within the hour. The spend of $150 over a month is really only expected to get me 2 to 3 incremental visitors a day. If I was going to try and pick up 900 unique visitors over the course of the rest of the challenge, I would need to spend something like $120 a day. Yeah. I’m not doing that. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes. Check back often and, of course, like, share and follow please.

It is a challenge – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Update: Beginning of Day 9 and blog post number 4. The results are mixed. I made my last post three days ago and the initial traffic was amazing. We had nearly 30 unique visitors on that first day. The next day, you ask? ONE!!!! One visitor. That’s it. Three likes, which was nice. To be completely honest, that one visitor went to a post I wrote two years ago……..not challenge related at all. The day after that? Yeah, I don’t want to talk about it……..but I will because it is you. I wouldn’t do this for anyone else. The second day after my last post was two visitors. At least, their traffic was challenge related.

The days are ticking away and the traffic is inconsistent at best and is still very light. I mentioned some passive ways to improve traffic. What we need now is

One active measure you can take to get your blog out there is to get talked about in the media…..ok, so how do you do that? Well, luckily, someone has already done a lot of the hard work. How do you think reporters find experts for their articles? “Help a reporter out”, also known as HARO, is a website that you can join for free at https://www.helpareporter.com/. Once you sign up, you will get two to three emails a day with lists of requests from someone looking to write an article (or a radio or television piece). You then can email the author/reporter with your answer to their request, a short bio (yours preferably) and your contact info, including your blog. If the author is interested, then they will contact you about their desire to use your input. If they do, you will credit and your blog will receive a mention and probably a link.

The emails you receive from HARO are broken down by topic, “Biotech and Healthcare” and “Business and Finance” for example. HARO isn’t going to be useful for every blog because of the subject matters the reporters are interested in. From the few emails I’ve received already, it appears that if your blog is about sex and intimacy, travel, decoration ideas or anything medical…..you will strike it rich at HARO. You do need to respond pretty quickly though. I did respond to one request on how social media fits into integrated marketing. I submitted my response about 12 hours after the HARO email and I got a response that already received the responses they need.

One interesting feature of the HARO requests is that it (generally) tells you which organization is requesting help. Two of the requests in this mornings email came from Andrea’s World Reviews. This allows you to go check out the site and see if it is the right fit for your blog. You can also get an idea of how much traffic the site has. Use a tool like – http://www.siteworthtraffic.com/ – to get a lot of great data about the blog. I put Andrea’s blog through their tool and see that they estimate she is getting 524 unique visitor’s a day……which is 15k visitors a month….or 15 X my goal for this challenge. I am humbled.

I will review the HARO emails and let you know if future posts whether or not I’m successful getting placement. I haven’t seen a lot of requests for marketing as of yet but I’ll keep looking.

I’m interested. What do you think of the challenge so far? Is this an interesting challenge for students in a marketing foundations course? Any suggestions on how to make it more successful. Please leave me a comment and let me know. Additional, as always, please hit the like and share buttons.

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Taking a Blogging Break – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Update – Day 5 of Challenge and 3’rd post: I think I may have a done a little bad math in my last post. By “may have,” I mean I totally messed up the math. Forgot to carry the two or some such thing. Basically, I correctly stated that I was looking at two days of traffic but then when I then went to compute my average run rate, I assumed the cumulative traffic was daily traffic, instead of two days worth of traffic. That is, I doubled the traffic in my calculations. And they call me analytical. You can see my mathematical blunder here: https://wolskisuccesspartners.com/2019/08/03/30-day-blogging-challenge-pictures/

Updating the math…….and doing it correctly this time…..in five days, we have had 31 unique visitors….I might be two of those, so let’s call it 29 unique visitors. That’s an average of 5 a day (I’m intentionally rounding this time, so the math is still good)…..up from the old reliable one to two unique visitors a day but no where near the 30+ we would need a day to hit a 1000 unique visitor target. Worse yet, five days have already passed with us fairly massively underperforming our target. As any good sales or marketing professional knows, when you underperform your quota in the beginning of the month, you have to over drive it for the rest of the month. We need a daily average of almost 40 unique visitors for the rest of the month to hit our target……..the plot thickens and the challenge becomes…..challengier??

oh no

Doing my research for posting today, I got a little humbled by another blogger, Cristian Mihai. Cristian writes a blog about blogging. Today he wrote about the purpose of blogging; namely “people.” People connecting. People discussing. People sharing. Etc. And I’m dedicating a month all about gaining and growing blog traffic. Yes, people are at the heart of it but I’m being pretty mercantile about it. Read about it on his blog here https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/79658252/posts/3019. He definitely has a point…….and now back to total commercial motivation.

Two things I have done in this post that helps build traffic are first, I linked to my own article at the end of the first paragraph. Some readers will be interested in more reading or background material. By linking to your own posts, assuming you are providing some interesting content, the unique visitors you do gain are of higher value as they are spending more time on your blog and clicking on links.

The second thing I did was to link out to another (higher traffic) blog. Cristian Mihai is a blogger (mentioned above) with a blog on wordpress. As I’m also using wordpress, I know that he will get a pingback that I linked to his blog. This is a passive way of gaining some interest from blogs that have a higher traffic. I’m putting together a post on how to more actively build links from other higher authority blogs but for now, we will stick with passive.

One thing I will do today that is active is to ask for you to like this post and share it. Please click any of the buttons that look like below:

Well except these buttons. They are only for demonstration but click any of the other buttons to share on your own social media. Thank you

Where to get Pictures for your Blog – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

We are about 48 hours and one blog post into the 30 day blogging challenge with a goal of turning my blog, which was getting around 50 unique visitors a month, into a high traffic blog with 1000 unique visitors in one month. You can read about our launch of the challenge here: https://wolskisuccesspartners.com/2019/08/01/30-day-blogging-challenge/.

In our case the month of August. How are we tracking so far you ask? I’m glad you did. Normally, in 2 days, this blog would have seen 3 to 5 unique visitors……in other words, a ghost town. In the last 48 hours, we received 14 unique visitors. That’s 3X to 4X the traffic. Not bad for one post. Now, to reach 1000 a month, we have to average over 30 unique visitors a day. Therefore, we seem to be on track. If we can now double the daily traffic and maintain that for the entire month of August, we will hit our target. Full disclosure……I might accidently be one or two of those unique visitors. I was looking for links and content on a couple of different devices and ended up on my blog……Let’s shoot for 1002!

One mistake I did make is that when I changed up the look of this blog to make it appropriate for the 30 Day Blogging Challenge, I accidently removed the share buttons. I believe I fixed that now. One bit of advice for getting any of your blogs or other online content shared as far as possible is to ask YOU, the reader to share the content. For example, my son watches a lot of YouTube, specifically DanTDM and EightBitRyan. In every video, they each ask the viewer to like and share their content. Think of the liking and sharing as the price you pay for free content. With all of that in mind, I added back the sharing buttons and I will now officially ask: If you support this effort, liked any of what you’ve read or simply support the concept please like and share this post……please!!!!

I did find an interesting post, “10 Keys to Make Millions Blogging”: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/272517. I’m not out to make millions blogging, although it would be nice. I imagine if I made even a paltry million dollars on this blog, I would have hit at least the 1000 unique readers target……..I assume. You are more than welcome to go read the making millions blog written by Timothy Sykes. I didn’t previously know anything about him. I read this blog and a couple others of his on the http://Entrepreneur.com website. He seems pretty informed, although I’m not a fan of how he implies how easy it is to become a millionaire blogging. Of course, if I earn a million off of this blog, I will apologize…..in a blog post. Seems only appropriate. I can summarize his ten key steps pretty succinctly: Post interesting and well written articles frequently and market your posts through social media…….It does look better in a list form but that is pretty much what he said. Take a look for yourself if you wish.

One point Timothy Sykes made in his millionaire blog that is not part of my summary is to invest in high-quality pictures. I totally agree. It is actually easier to get decent images than you might think. As with many online issues, google is your friend. For example, I found the Don’t Give Up image at the top on google. It led me to Flicker on the account of dahon. She appears to be a yoga enthusiast. This image is attached to her 30 Day Yoga challenge.

Finding free, usable and appropriate images is pretty easy on google. First, search for a relevant key term. For the 30 Day Challenge, I googled “30 Day Challenge.” Not terribly creative but it got the job done. Then switch your results to images. Then select the settings filter:

Under settings, select “advanced search.” You should see this screen.

scroll down to the bottom and select “Usage Rights”.

Then you can select either “free to use or share, even commercially” or “free to use, share or modify, even commercially”. These images are free for you to use. It is appropriate to give credit to whomever you are borrowing the images from. For example, you can celebrate with fireworks below from pxhere.com. Well, you can celebrate immediately after you hit like and share to your favorite social media.

Testing a 30 Day Blogging Challenge Before I assign to my Students

I’m planning my class for Marketing Foundations at Bryant University.  One of my thoughts was to assign the students a semester long challenge to creating a blog and building a sustainable amount of daily traffic.  In planning out what the actual objective would be and, therefore, what the assignments would be, I realized that I never built a high traffic blog.  Now, I have maintained this blog for a number of years but I really only did it as a side interest, almost a hobby.  Even though I’ve only posted here a couple of times in the last year, I still get a residual traffic of a few people a day.  When I was more of a regular poster, I did maintain traffic closer to a hundred people a day.  Nothing impressive but since it was never my objective to increase blog traffic, I was always ok with it.  I spoke to my wife about this potential assignment, who is vastly wiser than I am, and she suggested that I attempt to build a consistent traffic for this blog as a challenge before I assign it to anyone else.  The effort to do so would really teach the teacher as to whether this is a good homework assignment or not.

Now, I am cheating a little bit since I’m not starting with a new blog. I don’t believe that will make too much of a difference in the challenge. My goal will be to take the current traffic, which is less than 50 people a month to a 1000 unique visitors in August.

The assignment is to search for advice on how to build traffic on the web. Yes, I am planning on providing suggestions as well but anything I teach will be outdated by the time they graduate. I’m less interested in teaching students what is best practice today and more interested in teaching students to figure out current best practices. Google is your friend in that.

One of the first suggestions is to post frequently. Well that is pretty obvious. My assignment to the students is making a weekly post. Over a semester, that would be approximately 15 posts. Therefore, I’ll try to make 15 posts over August.

The second suggestion I found is to write posts that are 4000 to 8000 words long. The logic is that the more you write, the more likely you will leave a trail of key words that will help you rank higher in google search results. This is important since 90% of people click on the results from the first page only.

https://www.protofuse.com/blog/details/first-page-of-google-by-the-numbers/

I’m not a fan of 4000 word posts. I don’t believe I ever read one……I’ve started reading several of them but never finished one. I believe by focusing on what you want to say, you can include a significant number of key words that will help rank your blog higher in the search results. One of way of doing this is to realize that it will be very difficult getting on the first page with generic terms. For example, “blog” and “blog traffic” are probably written in hundreds of posts every day. “Growing blog traffic for school” is a search term that is much less likely to be used but it is also much less likely to show up in competitive blogs.

One way of finding these more specific terms is to google your more generic term and look for related searches recommended at the bottom of the page. For example, at the bottom of a search of “growing blog traffic” shows:

Related searches for growing blog traffic

A search for “blog traffic” has the following recommendations”

Related searches for blog traffic

To have a higher ranking blog, work these terms into the regular blog post. I’m going to close this post and will be back in a couple of days after researching a few more recommendations. There are a lot of other ways to grow traffic and I’ll report on as many as makes sense to me.