Yesterday marked the one year mark for the New Blog. Today, I am here to give you an update of it’s progress during months seven through eleven. For those just tuning in, here are some details about the experiment:
The New Blog launched on August 10th, 2015. This post is documenting the blog’s fourth, fifth, and sixth months of blogging from November 10th – February 10th.
The New Blog is going to remain anonymous because I want all the traffic to the blog to be “organic”. I refer to the New Blog’s author as Jane. Here are some bullet points facts about the blog.
- It is a healthy lifestyle blog: posting recipes, workouts, and other well-being related posts.
- Jane has never blogged before
- The blog’s platform is self-hosted WordPress
- The blog is using the Genesis framework + Restored316 theme
- Jane usually publishes new content 2-3 times a week
- Jane works on the blog for about 15-20 hours a week.
The low down Jane and the New Blog during months seven through twelve (the second half of the first year).
This report is going to cover a large time frame. Grab some popcorn and lets take an inside look at what it is like to be a blogger in the first year.
The seventh month of blogging, February 10th – March 10th
$59.91 – Google adsense. Wahoo. Money!
You’ll notice a drop in the traffic, which is totally normal for most bloggers this time of year. Especially healthy eating/fitness bloggers. It’s the post New Year blues.
Some other details:
Jane applied and was approved for a premium ad network, Mediavine. This company specializes in optimizing ads for mobile. A big chunk of the New Blog’s traffic comes from Pinterest, with high numbers from one specific pin. This makes the New Blog a perfect space to utilize making money from ads. A lot of Pinterest traffic comes
If you’re not satisfied with your results from Google Adsense, see if you qualify for another ad company. Here are a few alternatives:
- Sovrn / Meridian
- Federated Media
- Foodie Blog Roll
- Totally Her
- BlogHer Publishing Network
- Media.net, Yahoo! and Bing ad newtork
- Adthrive, ad management company
- Gourmet Ads
If you’re interest in monetizing you Pinterest traffic, you should check out Kate’s video on how to monetize Pinterest traffic with ads.
The eighth month of blogging, March 10th – April 10th
*the switch between ad networks, there was a gap of time where Jane did not receive payment for ads. These reports track the money once Jane receives it, not when she earns it. One thing most non bloggers or newbies might not realize is that it takes weeks to several months before bloggers see the money they’ve earned.
$117 Bluehost renewal
The New Blog started branding her images. Jane’s food pictures were all ready on par, but we worked together to come up with an idea for her to design her work out graphics. They are now cohesive, which helps her brand and makes life easier on her because she’s not trying to come up with a new graphic for every post. She also started using a new free editing program. When Jane started out, she was using Canva, but Canva and Picmonkey have their limitations.
BeFunky allows you to use your own fonts and to add images on top of other images. This allowed Jane to use the fonts from her logo in her grahpics and allowed her to put her logo stamp on all of the graphics. Win.
My friend Marianne has a great tutorial for how to Create Blog Post Graphic Templates with Befunky.
A few of Jane’s posts were featured in other bloggers round ups. One brought her in 420 hits this month. While another brought in 138 hits. Making friends with other bloggers is a good thing.
The ninth month of blogging, April 10th – May 10th
April was a pretty quiet month. The New Blog’s traffic balanced out to a more normal range as it stabilized after the New Years rush and her viral pin died down a bit.
The New Blog continued to get great traffic from the round up post mentioned last month and was featured on a the Greatist.com, which is awesome for bloggers in her niche.
The tenth month of blogging, May 10th – June 10th
$353 – Mediavine ad revenue (payout from March)
$147 – Google ads
$984 – Sponsored posts
Total = $1,484
This month was a big month, as far as money goes. Jane finally got a payout from when she had Google ads up during her high Pinterest traffic and she got her first big payout form Mediavine. She was also able to partner with sponsors for a few posts.
Traffic wise, I think the growth from last month to this month is a big deal (even though it’s not her highest months). This traffic growth, and increase o 15,295 visits, was more of a natural growth where as the previous months were partially due to the New Year (most blogger notice huge spikes in January/Feburary) and a viral Pin. To me, this months growth really shows that all of Jane’s hard work and efforts are paying off.
The New Blog had to upgrade to a paid MailChimp account. Although it stinks to have to fork over some cash to the Chimp now, it’s an exciting mark because it means her list is growing!
If you want to work on growing your email list, you definitely should read Kory Woodward’s blog. She’s a List Ninja.
The eleventh month of blogging, June 10th – July 10th
$371 Mediavine ad revenue (payout from April)
$50 sponsored posts
Total = $421
$65 photography, prop, and tool supplies
The New Blog was featured on Brit.co this month, having followed Brit + Co for a long time, I thought this was a cool feature. I was also super proud of Jane’s photography skills because her picture totally fit in there. 🙂
Jane didn’t post as often this month or the next month. Because, well, life. Here’s another little clue about Jane. She was 8 months pregnant during month 11 of blogging. 🙂 So although there was a slight traffic decrease from the previous month to month eleven, the New Blog did great considering the decrease in posts.
The twelfth month of blogging, July 10th – August 10th
$520.11 Mediavine Ads
$150 Sponsored Posts:
One of Jane’s Instagram photos was picked up by the Today Food Club and included in their email. Speaking of Instagram, did anyone else notice that Instagram started showing up in their Google analytics?
Jane’s email list hit another milestone by hitting the 1500 subscriber email mar.
Jane added Amazon affiliate links in her posts. You know I’m a big fan of affiliate marketing. I can’t wait to see how Amazon links do on her blog.
Jane’s viral pin from a few months back was featured on Pinterest’s blog. I like to check out Pinterest’s trend reports and was pleasantly surprised to see Jane’s pin in the post. Which also means that Pinterest themselves pinned her article. Score.
Who is Jane and the New Blog?
Check back next week for the big reveal and a year summary post. Until then, let’s play a little game and see if you can find Jane and the New Blog. Here are a few more clues about the New Blog.
- Jane is a certified Barre instructor
- Many of her recipes are Paleo or Whole30
- The New Blog’s viral pin is about banishing back fat.
- Below is the color scheme of the New Blog’s website
If you’re a Pinterest nerd like I am, I think you should be able to find her pretty easily based on the viral pin fact. May the odds be ever in your favor. Let me know who you think the New Blogger is in the comments below.
christine leger says
I’m a little disappointed in this project. i thought I was going to learn actual “how to” but all you did was tell you how to do it and then show us her stats. Everything here is based on one viral pin that got her the minimum requirements for mediavine. This isn’t typical.
Kristie Hill says
I’m sorry to disappoint you, Christine! It wasn’t one viral pin that helped the new blog grow. It was just her first one that gave a nice boost. She’s continued to grow since this series as a result of her focus on quality content, killer images, and connecting with her audience and other bloggers. Is there something specific you wanted to know how to do? (Get more traffic, start a professional blog, use Pinterest?) I am happy to direct you to a detailed tutorial of how we set Chrissa’s blog up and built a following.
Faraz Ahmad says
Inspiring article, keep up the good work. Good luck 🙂
Riyaz Ansari says
Indeed just amazing achievement in some time. I see many bloggers who enter in this field but after some he/she is demolish and leave from this blogging field. Fantastic your one year.
Portia @ Obsessed by Portia says
AMAZING! I’m envious of the traffic!!!
Jennifer Bigler says
This is a great resource and I am referencing it constantly. I wish I could figure out the best way to get more traffic. Thank you!
Kristie Hill says
That makes me so happy to hear Jennifer. A lot of the tips in months 1-4 will really help boost traffic.
Pinterest was the dead give away! Found her no problem : ) As a new blogger, thank you for sharing the potential for growth over one year. Just more motivation to keep going and to not give up!
Kristie Hill says
Good job Patty! Proud of your Pinterest skills.
Sheila DelCharco says
With those hints I found Chrissa without a problem!