My sixth monthly report… proof if proof were needed that blogging takes a long time to work out!
If you’re reading this with a blog less than 6 months old, you’ll see that you have to commit despite the lack of visitors: it’s a long game and your first 6 months will not generate the traffic you’re looking for without:
- Spending money on advertising.
- Being an outreach whizz.
- Working in a very uncompetitive niche.
Since I’m working in a VERY competitive niche, I’m not surprised that growth to date hasn’t been exponential. It’s gonna take me some time!
Anyway… here is my report for December 2019.
SideGains Google Analytics Stats December 2019
Here’s a chart showing month on month user growth from Google Analytics.
You can see that growth has risen steadily since July with one notable dip in October. Though visitors are low, the trend is heading upwards!
Looking specifically at November compared to December 2019 shows the following in Google Analytics.
|Month||Users||Sessions||Pages Per Session|
- Users have increased by 12.15%.
- Sessions have increased by 11.48%.
- Pages Per Session has increased by 0.12 pages.
A couple of factors to bear in mind for December.
Firstly, the Christmas holiday period, where I saw a clear month on month drop in users between the 18th and 25th December compared to the same days in November. Secondly, December has an extra day than November. Both factors mean I’m not comparing apples to apples.
I’m slightly disappointed that my users haven’t increased more substantially month on month, but I’m pretty certain this is down to the Christmas period, when search is generally down across many niches.
Nonetheless, SideGains is still moving in a positive direction… albeit slowly!
SideGains Search Console Stats (Search Type: Web) December 2019
As with October, there are mixed changes month on month here.
|Month||Clicks||Impressions||Avg. CTR||Avg. Position|
- Clicks have increased by 27.94%.
- Impressions have increased by 15.44%.
- Average CTR has remains the same.
- Average Position has decreased by 4.5 places.
These are good signs and I’m pretty pleased what the Search Console is showing me month on month. I’ll stress that the numbers are very low and I’m neither excited or unexcited about them per se: I’m just trying to look at this scientifically to understand and explain how SideGains is functioning at a search level over time.
Blog Posts & Pages
|Date||Post Title||Word Count|
|2019-12-02||What Should I Blog About? Ideas for All Bloggers||1,834|
|2019-12-03||Is Blogging Hard Word? Think Marathons Not Sprints!||1,182|
|2019-12-04||November 2019 Activity Report & Stats||1,240|
|2019-12-09||7 Reasons Why Fear of Blogging is the Mind-Killer||2,446|
|2019-12-11||Follow Back Twitter Accounts… Should YOU Follow THEM?||1,117|
|2019-12-13||What is the Best WordPress Theme For You?||983|
|2019-12-16||What are Twitter Lists & How Do You Use Them?||596|
|2019-12-17||The Truth About Blogging… 11 Things You Ought to Know||2,710|
|2019-12-24||How to Show Hidden Files in cPanel File Manager||303|
|2019-12-27||Can’t Find Your .htaccess File? Here’s What to Do!||957|
|2019-12-30||What Working from Home is REALLY Like!||1,718|
|Total Word Count||15,086|
I now have a total of 86 posts and will try to hit 100 by the end of January 2020! This will be a lot of work, since I like my posts to be authoritative and long form, but it’s a milestone I’ve had in my sights for a while.
I made 11 posts in December (2 less than November 2019) totalling 15,086 words (3,425 words less).
I maintained my focus on Twitter in December and also worked upon fixing the Pinterest issues I mentioned last month. I also began publishing more Facebook posts. Again I left Instagram pretty much alone.
I have defined a more methodical approach / schedule for my daily social media activity going forward into January 2019 so I can manage my workload more effectively… I guess I’ll be able to report on what I’m doing and how well it’s working in subsequent posts here!
Anyhow, here’s how my social accounts look at the end of December 2019 compared to November.
Twitter – @gains_side
The surprising news (for me at least) was I hit 1,000 Tweets in December since I began in July 2019. That seems like a lot as a hard number but the reality is it doesn’t feel like it was hard work or that I’ve spent that much time in accumulated hours to reach it… probably better not to try to add it all up though as the results might scare me!
I’ve decided to step up my Twitter activity in 2020 so it’ll be interesting to see what difference this makes across the board.
Pinterest – @SideGains
|Month||Total Pins||Impressions||Total Followers|
As I reported last month, I’d stopped making and posting pins at the beginning of November, because my pins had stopped generating impressions. Something seemed fishy!
Any new pin I posted was not getting any impression love and I couldn’t figure out why.
Adding to the fishiness was the fact I could no longer see my own pins in my activity reports. I figured this was either a bug or that Pinterest was not liking what I was pinning and had slapped me for it.
After reading around and taking advice I decided to do the following:
- Raise a support ticket with Pinterest to find out why my pins were not showing in my activity tab.
- Remove myself from the group boards I was a part of.
- Delete all non-performing pins and those that did not look very professional (most of them to be honest!).
- Redesign my Pinterest templates to give a consistent look and feel and include much larger text.
I didn’t hear back from Pinterest but a few days after I’d raised a support ticket my pins magically became available in my activity tab again. The other activities may or may not have played a part also but I began to see impressions in my Analytics reports again… tiny numbers, but numbers at least where before there were none!
I haven’t started pushing hard in Pinterest because of the holiday period. Instead I used the time to create a bank of new images that I can use going forward. These are all using a very different look and feel to what I was publishing previously.
I’m starting a new pinning schedule in January 2020 so I’ll let you know how this goes.
Instagram – @gains_side
|Month||New Posts||Total Followers|
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not focusing on Instagram right now as I think it’ll be a tougher nut to crack than other social media accounts. It’s also a question of time and for the minute I have to focus my attention elsewhere.
However, I’ll probably start posting something once a week just to keep some activity going there.
Enough said here though since there’s nothing really to report!
Facebook – @SideGains
|Month||Posts||Page Views||Total Page Follows|
I didn’t really increase my posting efforts in December but that’s changing in January. It seems I’m gaining followers by doing very little so I’m going to up my game to see what effect it has.
From now on I’ll be sharing my content whenever I publish new posts and will look forward to reporting about the difference it makes next month!
- Restart publishing more pins in Pinterest now it seems whatever was holding my account back is fixed… well, maybe fixed!
- I’m have a new activity schedule in an effort to be more productive across all the SideGains social media accounts. I’ll report on how it’s worked out next month and if it’s made a difference to my numbers, I’ll explain precisely what I’ve put in place.
- Continue making 3 to 4 blog posts each week to try to hit 100 posts since go live!
- Try out some outreach and other link building strategies I’ve been reading up on!
Bye for now and thanks for reading!
I’d love to hear about how things are going for you. Drop me a comment and let’s compare notes!