After blogging for over a decade, and posting daily for the vast majority of that time, I have some ideas about what constitutes a successful year (or month, or day) of blogging for me. My ideas of success are probably very different from many other bloggers’, but there are certain things I look for to tell me if it’s going well.
My main goal is to have more views in the current month that I did in the previous one. Most of the time this works out pretty well, although I can guarantee you that my views in August will never, ever be greater than those in July, because July is reliably the one month of the year that I get the most visitors to my website, mostly because of this old post. There are other months I don’t meet this goal, too, but I look at general trends, and hope to see some upward movement throughout the year.
In a similar fashion, I look at my stats from year to year. Did I have more views this month than I did in the same month the previous year? Again, I like to see signs of increased blog traffic, even if it’s just by a little bit, because that tells me that people are still interested in what I have to say. And usually, I see similar trends in this category compared to the month-to-month views.
The other number I look at is total number of views per month. My (often unrealistic) goal is 2,000 or more views in a single month. This happens…sometimes. In 2018, for example, I had eight months with 2,000 or more views, which is pretty good, especially compared to 2017, where I only reached that goal half of the months. It’s just another way I can keep tabs on how many people are visiting.
So I looked at those things this year, as I usually do, and for the most part, I was happy with how the statistics played out. But for the first time, 2018 has given me a few other cues that this was a good year for my blog. I was discovered by the St. Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau, and asked to write an article for their new inspiration magazine for actual money, because they liked the way I write. Pinup Girl Clothing sent me a box of Mary Blair print dresses in response to my blogging about their clothes and sharing pictures on my website and other social media platforms. And maybe the biggest sign that this year has been good for my website was a recent one…Pheasant Run Resort hosted our whole family for a fun Christmas getaway, in return for my blogging about our experiences while we were there.
I’ve never been one to try to monetize my blog. I don’t have ads or sponsors or anything like that. But it is nice to have a few tangible signs (more tangible than pure numbers, I guess?) that people are reading my blog, appreciating what I say and how I say it, and want to reward me in some way!