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Summer is almost here! Well, actually, it feels like it’s already here — my apartment is overheating despite the fan always being on, and my poor little cat Matrix (yes, he’s now a full grown cat as of the 2nd!) has now taken to flopping down in the middle of the floor due to being overheated too.
But despite all that, May has been a busy month!
May 2016 Wins
Finally took a break.
It might seem odd to call this a win, but for me, it really is.
It got to the point where blogging started to feel like a chore, and I wasn’t enjoying it enough. So when Grady left town for a few days, I used that time to pretty much do nothing. (Kind of.)
I made the deliberate choice to ignore my to-do list and do exactly what I wanted to do instead. So the first two days, I watched the Mindy Project, ate ice cream, and pulled out the leftovers I had frozen so I didn’t have to cook. When I felt a bit more refreshed, I read Strategies Worth Sharing, the ebook for bloggers about how to grow your Facebook. But it took me a full two days to actually wind down, and even then, I didn’t fully get away from blogging. I still did things related to blogging, but I did stuff I wanted to do. It was a really nice break!
(And since I was two weeks ahead, I had the room to do that. I’m now only a week ahead, but this is manageable!)
Now, after just four days of doing that, I’m ready to take on my to-do list.
The break helped me remember my why. I think what happened was I had so many things going on that even when I did take a break to cook or go for a walk, I didn’t enjoy them. Now I’m able to truly pause and just close the laptop when time is up.
Started working with a new Facebook strategy.
This wasn’t one of my goals, but it was one of the outcomes of my break! I’ve begun implementing some of the strategies from the book Strategies Worth Sharing, and I was surprised to see improvement within the first two days of doing that! Super cool, and a great feeling.
Saw more more repins & traffic from Pinterest!
This has been really exciting since I didn’t really work too much on Pinterest at all this month. My posts are being repinned a lot more than before, and Pinterest was my number one referrer in May, responsible for over 40% of all my traffic! Pretty exciting, especially since I’ve pretty much left Pinterest with the same system I’ve had since January. I’ll be paying more attention to it in a couple months as I approach the unit about growing in Elite Blog Academy.
Created an archive of my posts.
This was part of my goal to refresh at least 30 of my old posts. To do that, I had to identify which of my posts were the best so that I could focus on those, and make sure that posts which aren’t directly related to my theme aren’t my focus. So I created a Google Sheets file with a list of every single of one of my posts, which I can now refer back to whenever I need. It makes sharing my links really easy too, because I have my Pinterest description and Bitly link for all of them in one place. Yay!
Made my first sale through Amazon!
This was totally unexpected and really exciting! I don’t get paid out until I make $10 if I want an Amazon gift card, or $100 for a cheque because it was through the US Amazon. No direct deposit for me. But still, so exciting!
May 2016 Fails
Yep. It happened. It was bound to – I was spending ALL my time blogging, and it got a little out of hand. (Okay, really, badly out of hand.) I avoided work, and when I did work, I completely disregarded my priorities and just messed around.
Worked less efficiently.
Unfortunately, since I burnt out, I wasted a lot time (again). I couldn’t make myself face big tasks, so I instead of focused on little ones that really didn’t need to be done at the time. Sigh.
What I Want To Do Now: Goals for June
Stick to the timer!
This month, I’m determined to be straight with myself and focus. I think this goal will be much more easily achieved now that I’ve refreshed myself and don’t feel as burnt out anymore. I’m just going to close the laptop right away, before I can stop myself! It’s really the best way to do it, considering how March went when I did do that. I’m just more efficient when I take breaks! And plus, breaks will help keep me from burning out again.
Refresh at least 30 of my old posts (still).
This was one of my last month’s goals. I’ve made progress, since I created the archives, but that took a LONG time, so I’ve only updated one of my pillar posts so far. But I’ve identified them so now I can focus on doing that.
Again, since this goal is going to take up pretty much all of my time besides writing this month’s posts, I’m focusing on this instead of the new freebie. As soon as this is done (hopefully the end of this month, but maybe in July) you’ll see it, though!
Get ahead on the Facebook game.
I’m going to do my best to stick to my new Facebook strategy, but it does take extra time. Hopefully I can get a little ahead on it. If it ends up taking up too much of my time, I’ll have to slow down so that I can focus on refreshing my old posts.
May 2016 Stats
These are my blog stats for the past month, according to Google Analytics.
- Pageviews: 1,522 (-97)
- Sessions: 1,191 (-68)
- Visitors: 1,058 (-72)
- 16.8% of all visitors were returning visitors — an increase of 1.4%
- 83.2% of all visitors were new visitors — a decrease of 1.4%.
- Bounce Rate (percentage of people who leave right away): 84.63% — an improvement of 2%!
- Average Time Per Session: 47 secs (-1 sec)
- Pages Per Visit: 1.28 (-0.1)
- Top Referral Sources: Pinterest (43.6% of my traffic), StumbleUpon (22.8%), and Facebook (17.5%)
This month, I learned that StumbleUpon is still useful, though it increases bounce rate. I decided to only submit the posts that did particularly well this month, and my bounce rate wasn’t as bad.
And these are my social media stats as of June 1st.
- Facebook: 176 page likes (+15)
- Twitter: 932 followers (+29)
- Google+: 69 followers (+2)
- Pinterest: 928 followers (+55)
- Bloglovin: 492 followers (+7)
- Email list: 14 subscribers (+2)
May 2016 Posts
If you’re wondering, these are the posts from last month that led to the above stats.
- My Fourth Month Self-Hosting My Blog
- It Was Rape: 6 Months Later
- Why Feminism Is Not Called Egalitarianism Or Humanism
- 9 Feminist Father’s Day Gift Ideas
- Teas & Kitties: Adulthood & A Rude Awakening
- How I Discovered Intersectionality As a Queer Woman of Colour
- Guest Post: Why Do You Want Kids?
- How I Realized I’m Not Straight (And Why You Should Care)
And finally, the moment we’ve all been waiting for…
May 2016 Income Report
Media.net ads: $0
Affiliate links: $0
Apparently I earned $0.85 from Media.net this month, but since I don’t get the money until I hit $100 I didn’t put it in this report. (Also, it’s because someone from Peek UserTesting clicked the ad, not because I got more pageviews. Dang. Be wary of the feedback you get from them!)
Same goes for affiliate links — I did make $2 US from Amazon.com and $0.35 (haha) from Amazon.ca, but no payout yet. Progress, though! Yay.
Buffer: $13.41 CAD
BoardBooster: $12.92 CAD
Affiliate Marketing For Bloggers ebook: $40.62 (part of a bundle of lots of other books)
Total: $66.95 CAD
This month, I bought The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle because it has LOTS of resources about saving money, and for some reason it included the Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers book (the sale is over now, otherwise I’d link it – sorry!). It was cheaper to do because of how much more I got for the price, but in retrospect I probably could have waited. Oh well. #whoops
I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with this month for expenses! I’ve already put aside what I’ll need to be Laura at Pixel Me Designs in August, so it’s not going to hurt when I have to deal with that. Looks like my big spending months are over, at least for now! Time to focus on content 🙂
(I should add, a lot of the extra spending is stuff I didn’t need to do… sigh… hopefully you learn from my mistakes!)
How Elite Blog Academy Helped Me This Month
Remember your why.
This isn’t something EBA teaches specifically in the unit that I’m in right now, but Ruth sent out a newsletter a couple weeks ago where she explained that she also took a few days’ break to refresh herself, and she encouraged us to remember our why. She said that as soon as blogging becomes a chore, we won’t do our best, so we HAVE to give ourselves a break. I’m really glad she sent out that newsletter – it made me sure that the break I took wasn’t going to be an awful mistake. And it wasn’t! I’m more productive now than I would have been if I had tried to force myself through.
See you next month!
If you want to see more about how I actually set up my blog and the costs of that, you can check out this post where I explain it all 🙂
What goals do you have for June?