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December Blog Goals Update

Blog Goals

It’s hard to believe that 2013 is now upon us and 2012 is in the books. December was definitely a hectic month in the Frugal Rules household as we had family visiting throughout the month and we started looking at business prospects for the New Year. December was my third full month at blogging and as you read this post, Frugal Rules will be officially four months old.

As I look at the New Year there are a few things, in specific, that I have in mind in terms of the site. The first, and most important, thing I am looking at is a complete redesign of the site. I really like the layout of my theme and the magazine feel it has about it. However, the developer of the theme has stopped supporting it and that has jumpstarted my desire to make some changes. I was already thinking of doing it, but his falling off the face of the earth is making the change necessary. Other changes are more conceptual in nature at this point, but suffice it to say that I am excited as I consider the future of Frugal Rules.

Statistics

Overall, it was a very good month for Frugal Rules. I am now consistently getting at least 40-50% of my daily visitors as a result of search engine traffic. The highlight of the month was hitting over 1,100 visitors on December 23rd. In fact, the weekend before Christmas Frugal Rules was going nuts as apparently a lot of people were looking for last minute Christmas gift ideas. The downside of getting all of the search traffic was that it skewed some of my other numbers, which is to be expected I guess. I am also nearing going below the 50,000 mark in Alexa and have pretty much stopped watching it as there are much more important numbers to watch in my opinion. Now on to the stats:

  • 12, 122 Page Views in November
  • 15, 839 Page Views in December (30.66% increase)

 

  • 2.21 Pages per visit in November
  • 1.77 Pages per visit in December

 

  • 60.71% Bounce Rate in November
  • 72.55% Bounce Rate in December

 

I also had a goal to reach 900 Twitter followers and 100 Facebook likes. Thanks to two giveaways I blew those numbers out of the water and ended up with 1,427 Twitter followers and 936 Facebook likes. Nothing like buying a little social media love! I also had one other goal of doing two guest posts and was able to accomplish that.

Blog Goals for the Month of January

I am not exactly certain what to expect as the New Year begins in terms of traffic but think the goals I’ve set are attainable with some effort. My blog goals for January are:

  • 17,000 Page Views
  • 1,750 Twitter followers and 1,000 Facebook likes
  • Bounce Rate under 65%
  • Guest post on two sites

For other bloggers, how are your goals going or have you even set blog goals? Is anyone using Google + for their blog? I have a page, but that’s about it.

 

Photo courtesy of: Capellas3

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I'm the founder of Frugal Rules, a Dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry. I'm passionate about helping people learn from my mistakes so that they can enjoy the freedom that comes from living frugally. I'm also a freelance writer, and regularly contribute to U.S. News & World Report, Personal Capital, Daily Finance and more. If you're wanting to learn how to monetize your blog, check out my blog coaching services to see how I can help you take your site to the next level.

52 Comments

  • Great stats John, your blog is growing quite quickly.
    I was thinking about adding google+. I might make it one of my goals for next month.

    • John says:

      Thanks Glen, you’re not doing too half bad yourself either. :) I just find that I don’t have the time at the end of the day to focus on another thing, who knows.

  • Jennifer Lynn @ Broke-Ass Mommy says:

    Truly phenomenal growth, John. I am reluctant to start up on Google plus or even a Facebook page due to limited time for maintenance. If you do decide to try Google plus, I would love to hear your opinion about it.

  • Those are crazy good stats for a blog of your age.. Keep doing what you are doing, sir.. You are certainly on the right path!

  • Awesome John! We don’t track things like we should but I would be curious to see our numbers.
    You are doing awesome!

  • Michelle says:

    Wow your blog is definitely doing great! Good job :)

  • Thad says:

    Great job! I finally got over the 1000 Twitter follower hurdle just this week. Congrats on the growth of your blog!

  • Catherine says:

    You`re doing so well. Congrats John, keep it up!

  • I know (because I see your comments and tweets) that you’ve put in a lot of effort into growing your blog and reaching out to others, so I’m happy that you are seeing results! I haven’t checked Google Analytics for almost two weeks now, and I’m pretty happy about that. I may check it sometime within the next few days just to see what search terms are getting me traffic so that I can brainstorm posts…but I am going to try not to focus too much on the traffic.

    • John says:

      Yes, it has taken a lot of time and effort, but it’s worth it for me. I really don’t spend a whole lot of time on Google Analytics, maybe 5-10 minutes per day. I’ve created a handy dandy little spreadsheet that I put a lot of the info in each morning so it’s there for me to analyze.

  • It’ll be exciting to see any changes you make, especially if you get a new design! I love redesigns and new looks…

    Anyhow, I do use G+ but I don’t see much that comes from it. I primarily use it simply as an extra link to my post. My website goals are coming together and I’m pretty excited about 2013. While things can change at any moment, I think there are some exciting times ahead for WSL. I guess it all hinges on the next PR update…so I’m anxiously awaiting that.

    • John says:

      It is exciting, but then again I remember I have to find the time to do it and wonder where on earth it’s going to come from.

      I would agree with you about WSL. I think you’ve been doing all the right things and see great things for you.

  • Matt says:

    Google+? Yeh, I use it, although I haven;t put a huge amount of time into it. Unlike Twitter, it has community pages, so you could join one for personal finance, debt management or what have you, and I think it’s a little more “serious” than facebook. What I mean by that, is that if I want to chat to my friends and look at pictures of cats being cute, then I do facebook. I don’t get the impression google+ is quite like that. Also, google+ posts sometimes show up in google news, certainly mine have.
    Well done on your stats btw, I’ve been blogging for a little over 3 months and have a HUGE 83 twitter followers 0.o so I’m not too far behind ;) Personally, I’m going to focus on spending a bit more effort on twitter if time lets me

    • John says:

      I’ve heard the same thing about G+ Matt. Looking at it does make it seem more serious than Facebook which I like to some extent. Twitter has been a huge boost for my site and get a good bit of traffic from it.

      • Matt says:

        The other thing you get from google+ is some google love as well of course. Google doesn’t have access to a lot of facebook and twitter data anymore, but the G+ button does give it some partial social popularity data, which helps SERP rankings. I’d rather have 100 G+’s than FB likes anyday.
        And if you’re looking for a PF community to join, try here: https://plus.google.com/communities/101521912806093147726

        So if you don;t ming me asking… How did you get so many twitter followers? Was it just sharing other people’s posts on an industrial scale? Or was there some other tactic?

        All the best for 2013, hope your blog continues to grow

        • John says:

          Thanks for the information Matt! I’ll have to check that group out.

          To be honest, the large majority of my Twitter following is through sharing a ton of other posts. I’ve picked up some through giveaways, but no more than a couple hundred.

  • Wow that is awesome. I wasn’t seeing those types of results until much later. You seem to have a good handle on this blogging stuff!

  • You have done awesome John! My blog is the same age as yours, but I am not nearly as far along as you. Not too far behind, but I have a lot of work to do. Keep up the good work. I have a google + page and it is ok. I only put up a few of my best posts on there, but I did start a personal finance bloggers community page not too long ago. It only has a few members and I am not sure if it is worth the time. I do recommend promoting your page and adding posts to it. Google seems to like when you use it!

    • John says:

      Thanks Grayson! You’re doing a pretty awesome job yourself. I’ve heard the same thing about G+. I want to use it and see some of the value in it…I just don’t know where the time would come from.

  • Great job! I think page view is the only thing I really care about. Bounce rate and page view per visit are more dependent on the referral source. I don’t think those are a big deal.

  • Congrats on the huge december traffic. I have a post like that about tipping the mailman which always takes off right before Christmas. My experience has always been that Jan-April are the busiest times for personal finance bloggers, so you should continue to experience great traffic!

    • John says:

      Thanks! A lot of it came from my two posts around tipping & gifts. I thought the counter was wrong when I looked one day and saw 1,000 visitors.

  • You’re going to be a huge blog in a very short time. I hope you remember the little people! I have a Google + page, but have done nothing for it. I just got the Facebook up and running not too long ago, but I’m sure Google is one more thing I should add. Congrats on the growth.

    • John says:

      Thanks Kim! While that is my goal, I do hope that I am the type of person who would not consider himself too “big” or “busy” to work with or help others. I am in the same boat in regards to Facebook/G+…I just need to find the time.

  • Same here, I do have a Google+ account for my blog but I can’t really understand how it works. I have two new blogs and I am still working on its design and layout. There is an article added every day to attract visitors every day and increase its traffic.

  • Mackenzie says:

    Wow, you totally rocked it in December!! Congrats!! :)

  • Wow you killed it! You’ve been putting the hard work in and it’s definitely showing! Keep up the good work…I know how time consuming it can be!

  • Pauline says:

    Great job! I have Google + like you, just opened, and I didn’t know it improved your rankings like Veronica said, so thanks for the tip Veronica, that is great to know. Twitter is already a time sucker and my FB page has recently taken off so I think I’ll wait until I master the two before adding G+

  • I have hit my goals consistently but am looking for ways to increase traffic as well. I’m very interested in learned how to host a give away.

  • John says:

    Thanks Veronica! Be on the look out for an email, as I think I may be sending you one.

  • Wow. That’s truly impressive. I’m on target to hit 6k pageviews this month for my food blog; only took 2 1/2 years to get there!

    As far as Google+ goes, I have it but I’m not personally a fan. Aside from the hangouts, which I’ve never used, there is nothing really to differentiate it from Facebook and they still haven’t released the write-API, which makes it more difficult to actually incorporate it into blog marketing.

    • John says:

      Thanks Edward. I can say one thing, it has taken a TON of time. From what I’ve seen I am not a huge fan of G+, but I wonder if any sustainable traffic can come from it or if it can help out in any other way.

      • Well, Google does take into account social media shares into rankings, at least for social media platforms that they can index. So by sharing your posts on G+, you are increasing your rankings and indirectly influencing your search traffic.

  • Your pageviews continue to astonish and amaze me. Can’t wait to see what this year brings!

  • Buck Inspire says:

    Amazing numbers! What do you think is more important? Your killer content or the way you network with others? Keep it up!

    • John says:

      Wow, thanks for the compliment Buck! I think it’s a combination of the two (Not to toot my own horn). You have to have the content to keep them, but the networking brings them in.

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