January 2018 Traffic Report

Starting this year I’m going to do a monthly traffic report of the blog. Part of what I’d like to get out of this is a better understanding of my traffic, and what works to grow it and what’s not working as much.

I’ll dig into some of the strategies I’m trying out – hopefully other bloggers will find this valuable. At the very least, hopefully it’s interesting.

I’m also going to use this post to provide some general life updates, updates on goals, etc.

Without further ado…

January 2018 Traffic Overview

  • Pageviews: 6150 – My best month, and without any features or anything crazy. I had a few months last year that peaked above this number, but that was due to either being featured on Reddit, a post going viral on Twitter, or a Rockstar feature. January didn’t have any big spikes, which is great.
  • New Sessions: 50.25%. This is an interesting stat to me – it’s simply a measure of how many people (roughly) are first-time visitors.
  • Comments: 92 new comments, bringing the total up to 1047. I’m pretty happy with the engagement in the comments, and try to reply to everyone if I can. I can’t always answer right away, but I’ll get to it eventually!

How People Got Here

Note on the ‘Other’ category – 99% of that traffic comes from people sharing posts using the Share buttons at the end of each post. Unfortunately the plugin doesn’t play nice with Google Analytics, so it gets coded as Other.

Referral traffic is by far the biggest source, which isn’t too surprising. I get a lot of traffic from the Rockstar Directory, which also tends to over-inflate Bounce Rate and deflate Pages per Session.

My highest referral sources in January were Rockstar Finance (143 sessions) and Picky Pinchers (also 143 sessions!). Interestingly, Picky Pinchers has been a really solid source of referral traffic for me. Comments have

Most Popular Posts

My top three posts of January were:

Social Media

I promote my content the most on social media – and generally keep Facebook and Twitter sharing the same(ish) content. I do tend to engage a lot more on Twitter, so if you’re not following me there, click on the link below and follow!

Overall I’m happy with how Twitter’s gone for me. Facebook is a bit of an enigma…growing page likes is really tough because there just isn’t great targeting available for free. Meh, oh well!

  • Facebook – 139 page Likes
  • Twitter – I ended January with 1237 followers. I’m up to just under 1300 at the time of this writing.

February Blogging Goals

  • Page Views: 6000. It’ll be tight with a shorter month, and we’re going to be gone for a few days so it’ll be tough to promote the site as much as I’d like.
  • Facebook – 145 page Likes. Super aggressive, I know.
  • Twitter – 1400 Followers

I also am going to start converting the Financial Fridays posts to an email campaign.

Best Spam Comment of January

Haha, so this is my favorite part of what I’ll be doing with these updates. Every day I get some great spam comments. Some are funny, but most are non-sensical.

I’ll share the best one from the previous month just for fun.

Life Updates

We’re going to Maryland! Kristin and I are SUPER pumped to go visit friends in Maryland who we haven’t seen since our wedding. Kristin grew up in the area so we’ll visit a few places she’s got in mind, and it’ll be my first trip to DC.

It’ll just be a long weekend – Thursday through Monday – but it’ll be good to get away for a bit.

To all my DC blogging friends – our schedule is jam-packed this time, but I’m going to take a rain-check on a meet up for next time. If any of you are in the Minneapolis area in the future, though, let me know.

That’s all I’ve got for this month’s traffic update! I’m going to revise the format and content moving forward.

Question

Let me know what you like, what you don’t like, what you want to see, etc.

17 Comments

  1. I like the new series Dave! It will be interesting to watch as you grow and change, and see what works and doesn’t. I sort of gave up on Facebook mostly, I don’t use it in my personal life anymore either, I’m all in on Twitter. And even that I’ve been trying to cut back on, as it seemed to have taken over my whole life for a while! But you are doing a fantastic job. Keep it coming 🙂

    1. Thanks 🙂 I’m basically giving up on growing my FB page right now. I still use FB in general but just for some groups I’m part of.

      Twitter is a lot easier to engage as a ‘brand’ I find, so it tends to be where I hang out more.

    1. Thanks Michael! I’m pretty happy with them even when I see folks who are getting 3-4x my traffic who started around the same time, or even more recently. At the end of the day I really enjoy running the blog and I know I could grow my traffic if I engaged in some other things like Pinterest, but I just don’t want to devote the time to it right now 🙂

  2. Facebook charges content providers… They make you advertise to get your message out to people that have already indicated they want to hear from you. YouTube, on the other hand, rewards content creators and shares ad revenue with them. Not sure what Twitter does… Maybe just neutral. But I strongly disagree with Facebook’s revenue strategy.

    1. YouTube also changed their requirements to earn $$ including minimum video views and subscribers to their channel. If you don’t hit their numbers – which are pretty steep for beginners – you won’t make a dime.

  3. As a newbie, I appreciate your willingness to post this info. It is very helpful with goal-setting and understanding the analytics.

    I feel you on Facebook and Pinterest. I don’t really understand the latter and had already mostly stopped using the former in my personal life. But my younger colleagues tell me that Facebook is over, so no need to worry 🙂

  4. This is a great month, Dave, with some solid numbers! It’s tough out there in the blogosphere; if you’re not constantly adding posts, it’s easy to get left behind. I know first hand about that ha ha.

    Keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks Shawn! It’s definitely tough to constantly add posts. I’ve thought about going down to one post a week but I really like to have the consistency and more engagement with my readers, so I try to commit to 3 a week.

    1. Thanks Jake! A big way I found to find more followers was, at least in the beginning, to find other personal finance bloggers and follow them, and maybe look through their followers and see who to follow there, too. Twitter has an unwritten rule of ‘you follow me, I’ll follow you’ type rule.

      The other thing that I think has helped is my Blogosphere Update posts get shared by the people who I feature in them pretty frequently, so their followers can find me that way, too.

  5. I’m doing something similar on my blog. My stats are no where near as good as yours. On the plus side, my February numbers are (sightly) better than my January numbers.

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