I started out this year by making some changes to my blog. Every year in January I make a few goals and set out to make my blog better than the year before. The first week of the month (and year) I changed the overall design giving it a more clean and fresh look, signed up with a new ad network and I also made a few behind the scenes changes.
Ads: After doing a little research I decided to stop handling the ads on my site. I was using Google AdSense before but wasn't seeing the return I knew I could get AND I just didn't have the time or knowledge to do it anymore. I am now working with The Blogger Network (I officially switched over on the 27th). Before jumping on board with them I did quite a bit of research. If you read my December 2014 income and traffic report then you know I have worked with a not-so-great ad company before with horrible customer service. I started transitioning with The Blogger Network the first week of January and have been in contact with a few employees. They have all been super helpful, eager to partner together and make sure I have all of my questions answered. I have spoken to them over email, on the phone and Friday I have a live google chat appointment with the person assigned to my blog and ads. So far I am beyond pleased. Since my ads JUST switched over I won't know how my numbers look with them until next month's income report. Stay tuned!
Here are some of the behind the scenes changes I made-
- On top of getting a new 35mm lens for my camera as a Christmas gift I also purchased Tasty Food Photography (an e-book written by Lindsay of Pinch of Yum). I read the e-book and have been using things I learned from it to help style my photos and take better pictures. I highly recommend this book for any blogger because the tips are great! I have truly seen a change in my photography over the past four weeks!
- I signed up with Hello Bar (the bar at the top that says 'Come Pin with Me') and have seen awesome results. The Hello Bar is free although you can pay if you want to have more features available. (I'm using the free version.) I have had 239 conversions from it in January. In English that means I have had 239 people start following me on Pinterest using the Hello Bar. One of my goals was to reach 10K Pinterest followers in 2015 and I only need 115 more to reach my goal! Hey - are you following!?
- I created an Amazon Affiliate account so I can link to supplies I use. I don't expect or really want to make any money off of this but want my followers to be able to see exactly what I'm talking about. When I mention a product they can go look at it and then know what to buy if they are going to do one of my crafts, DIY projects or make a recipe. Since I personally love Amazon and am a prime member I figured there was no harm since it is a company I truly love and use personally. (Did you know if you have Amazon Prime not only do you get free prime shipping but you get access to free prime movies, music and e-books!?)
- Last but not least I have been trying to be more organized with my blog. I have taken on quite a few sponsored posts for the next few months, will be contributing posts to two other blogs per month this year and am trying to put together a series on the blog for handmade sellers. With everything going on I have been using a planner so I don't forget anything! So far - so good!
January Income- $243.90
- Google Ads - $118.90 (1/1-1/26)
- Clever Girls Collective - $125 (payment for a sponsored post I did in November)
- Supplies - $36.00
This months numbers were low but I expected that which is why I made sure I didn't have many expenses. Most of the supplies I purchased were for sponsored posts. I don't take on many sponsored posts in November and none in December due to how busy my ETSY shop gets. Since most sponsored posts don't pay out until 30-60 days after you publish the post that means December and January income goes down. I also always see a dip in pageviews during January. I guess everyone is out at the gym trying to stay true to their resolutions rather than at home reading blogs and pinning. Wink, wink!
Just because these numbers are low doesn't mean that I haven't been busy though! I did a couple of sponsored posts last month that will pay out in February and March AND I have a couple more coming up over the next two weeks.
I have been with The Blogger Network for one week as of today and looking at the numbers I am super excited because I think February's income is going to blow January's out of the water (and it is only the 4th of the month)!
Here is my traffic screenshot from January -
Can you see a trend? Sundays had the highest traffic each week. I also had a few recipes accepted to Food Gawker and a craft featured on Tatertots and Jello and Craft Gawker in January which helped boost traffic a bit. On top of those things I have been trying to make a point to share a project or two on Hometalk each week. I had an account before but never really used it until now.
My top ten traffic sources for January -
All in all it was an okay month but I am excited about what February has in store!
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