Blogging

Two Years of Blogging

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase something through my link, I will earn a small commission. This does not affect the price you pay for the item. I only advertise products that I have used myself and would genuinely recommend.

Today is the second anniversary of my blog! I published my first post on 16th September 2018 and it feels like yesterday. How time has flown!

I suppose I can no longer say that I am a new blogger, although I still feel like one sometimes. I am constantly learning new things about blogging and I know I still have a lot to learn.

On this day last year, I published a post about my first year of blogging. I am going to write this post in the same format as last year’s: sharing what I have learned in my second year of blogging, my blog stats and achievements, and my plans for the next year.

Two Years of Blogging

Things I have learned during my second year of blogging

You get out what you put in

This applies to all areas including social media, blog comments and affiliate marketing. The more you promote your blog, the more views you will get. The more you comment on other blogs and take part in Twitter threads, the more comments you’ll get on your blog. And the more you promote affiliate links, the more sales you’ll get. If you do nothing, you probably won’t get a lot of views or sales!

One of my aims is to build up passive income streams where I will basically earn money in my sleep. But even these take time and effort to build up in the first place.

Blog stats and earnings really do fluctuate a lot

Don’t get discouraged if your blog has a bad week or month. Look at long-term trends rather than short-term, for example, compare how your blog is doing now compared to a year ago.

Sometimes, things happen that are outside of your control

A few months ago, Pinterest was my best source of blog traffic. My traffic from Pinterest was steadily increasing. Then, the algorithm changed and I have had barely any traffic from Pinterest ever since. I have been working to sort this out but I haven’t yet had any success.

The traffic drop has been discouraging, but it has made me realise that my blog can be affected by things that are totally out of my control. That is a fact of life for any blogger and it doesn’t mean that it is a personal failure. I have just had to be resilient, keep going, try to sort the problem and find other ways to get more traffic to my blog.

Motivation comes and goes

A pattern I have seen among other bloggers, as well as in myself, is that they go through phases of being very active on their blog and social media, and being more distant. Motivation naturally comes and goes, and the circumstances in our personal lives are constantly changing. Sometimes we will be too busy to work on our blog much, or we just won’t feel like it. Other times we will be super motivated and have a burst of activity. I think this is normal and okay.

Set a timer when working on blog posts

Lately, I have begun setting a timer for 1 hour when I work on blog posts. This helps me to stop procrastinating and get on with writing because I know I only have to do an hour and then I’m done for the day. This is a great way to keep the momentum up on my blog because I have found that spending just 1 hour a day on blog posts gets me ahead overall.

In August, for example, I managed to work on blog posts for an hour on 23 out of 31 days. By the end of August, I had 3 blog posts scheduled ahead. This shows that I don’t even have to work on my blog every day to get ahead – as long as I do an hour on most days.

I have found that I am a lot more relaxed writing my blog posts when I know I have several scheduled ahead. I don’t feel rushed to get posts finished quickly, so I take more time and care over them.

What I Achieved in my Second Year of Blogging

My blogging achievements in my second year of blogging

  • Publishing 100 posts! This brings my total number of posts to 213. I wrote 13 fewer than I did last year, but nowadays I put more time into my posts than I did when I first started blogging, so it makes sense that I published fewer posts.
  • Posting consistently for the whole year with a maximum of 6 days between blog posts.
  • Taking part in Blogtober 2019 – writing an Autumn or Halloween themed post every day last October.
  • Getting my first payout of £61.31 from Google Adsense
  • Collaborating with several brands and authors
  • Significantly improving my skills at making Pinterest pins
  • Improving the look of my blog, making it more branded and consistent
  • Uploading my first (freebie) product onto Gumroad – A blog post checklist!
  • Becoming an affiliate for the e-book ‘A Blogger’s Best Friend’

My blog stats from my second year of blogging

I find it really interesting to see the blog stats of other bloggers, so I am going to share mine here. These are my blog stats from September 2019 to August 2020. If you want to see my stats from my first year of blogging, you can refer back to last year’s post.

A table showing my blog stats from September 2019 to August 2020
Green means an increase; amber means it stayed the same; red means a decrease. A white outline indicates a new record.
A table showing my blog stats from September 2019 to August 2020

As you can see, most of my stats have been up and down all over the place this year! My blog views decreased at the end of 2019, but then steadily increased, reaching a peak in May, before dropping right down again. The main reason for this is that I was getting most of my traffic from Pinterest. My Pinterest was doing really well until the algorithm changed, and it has dropped right down ever since, so my blog views have dropped with it. My earnings from Adsense have more or less correlated with my blog views.

I have been working on getting traffic from other sources, as well as trying to sort out my Pinterest. So hopefully my traffic will rise again during my 3rd year of blogging!

Strangely, my Google search clicks followed a similar pattern. They steadily rose until April, and then began to decrease again. Hopefully, this will only be temporary, and my Google traffic will rise again!

I have had a slow and steady increase in blog subscribers this year. The reason why the number suddenly drops from 156 to 81 is that I used to count my email subscribers and WordPress subscribers together in one number, but in July I separated them out into 2 different columns.

I have consistently gained followers on all my social media platforms, which I am really pleased about. I have even continued to gain followers on Pinterest despite my views and engagement dropping so much! I’m not really sure why this is, but I won’t complain!

My Domain Authority has been up and down, but the general trend has been upwards, rising from 6 to 14 in the past year. It even reached 15 a couple of times but unfortunately dropped back down again.

I have not made much money from Amazon associates – only 10 sales and £8.50 in total and I haven’t even reached the cash-out amount. However, when I compare this to last year when I barely made any Amazon affiliate sales at all, it is an improvement!

Top 5 most popular blog posts from September 2019 to August 2020

These are the blog posts that have been the most popular during the past year:

  1. 7 Lessons I have Learned from Studying Cognitive Behavioural Therapy – 13195 views
  2. Detox Foot Pads: My Experience – 4089 views
  3. Things to Do When You are in Self-Isolation – 3681 views
  4. What To Do With Those Little Ribbons You Cut Off Your Clothes – 1870 views
  5. Hairburst Shampoo, Conditioner and Elixir – My First Impressions – 1158 views

Interestingly, 4 out of 5 of these blog posts were written in my first year of blogging and were my top 4 most popular blog posts last year too. It just goes to show that old, established content can keep on bringing you views! I wonder if these will still be my most popular posts next year, or if some of my newer posts will catch up.

Last year’s goals

In last year’s post, I set myself some goals and aims for my second year of blogging. These were:

  • Take part in ‘Blogtober’ or a similar blogging challenge.
  • Take part in more collaborations with other bloggers and PR opportunities with brands.
  • Write guest posts for other blogs, and accept guest posts on my blog.
  • Participate more in social media and get to know more fellow bloggers better.
  • Continue to post at least once every 6 days.
  • Carry on making improvements to my blog.
  • Continue to see a rise in all my blog stats.
  • Reach the threshold (£60) to cash out my Google Adsense earnings by the end of November 2019 (to actually cash out in December).
  • Be reaching the threshold and cashing out within a month by June 2020.
  • Be cashing out at least £500 per month by September 2020.
  • Earn money from other sources including affiliate programmes and PR opportunities.

Did I meet these goals?

I took part in Blogtober last October so I definitely met that one! I also collaborated with a few brands, receiving a free product in exchange for a blog post. This included several books to review. I didn’t, however, collaborate with any other bloggers, or write or accept any guest posts.

I have been more active on social media lately, especially on Twitter and Instagram. This means I have got to know several bloggers a lot better, but I still wouldn’t say I have formed any close blogging friendships. Maybe some will develop during the next year.

I published a blog post at least once every 6 days, made a lot of improvements to my blog and saw an overall rise in the majority of my blog stats.

In terms of the financial goals I set, I was way off. I’m glad that I set optimistic goals because it pushed me to work harder on earning money from my blog. However, it has taken longer than I thought to build up traffic and earnings from Adsense. 

I managed to reach the threshold (£60) in February and cash out my Adsense earnings in March this year, so I reached that goal but 3 months late. Unfortunately, my earnings have dropped since then because I have had a drop in traffic, so I am only halfway to my second cash-out – I am definitely not cashing out £500 per month!

I have earned a very small amount of money from Amazon affiliates and I am hoping to earn more from affiliate marketing and PR opportunities in the coming year.

I have earned a very small amount of money from Amazon affiliates and I am hoping to earn more from affiliate marketing and PR opportunities in the coming year.

My Blogging Goals for Year Three

Plans and goals for my blog’s third year

I can’t believe my blog is already entering its third year! These are some of the plans I have for it:

  • Get more into affiliate marketing and make regular affiliate sales
  • Take part in more collaborations with brands and other bloggers
  • Form closer friendships with fellow bloggers (hit me up!)
  • Continue to post at least once every 6 days and stay ahead with scheduling posts in advance
  • Sort out my Pinterest so that I am getting good traffic from there again
  • Read/follow all the blogging courses and e-books that I have purchased and not yet read
  • Create and publish an e-book. I am not sure on the topic yet but I have a few ideas. This is not directly a blogging goal, but it is closely related!
  • I am going to set a tentative goal to be earning at least £100 per month from my blog by September 2021. I would love to exceed that!

Another year from now

It was really interesting to look back on last year’s post and see whether I met my goals and expectations. Overall, my blog followed the direction that I expected it to, although I would have liked to have earned more money from it. I am excited to see what my blog’s third year brings, and look back at this post after another year!

Are you a blogger?

If so, how long have you been blogging for? Do you still consider yourself to be a new blogger, or would you say you are an established blogger? Have you set yourself any blogging goals this year? Let me know in the comments below!

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Two Years of Blogging

8 Comments

  1. I love this post. When I first started blogging I was making weekly reflections but I put it to the side and I haven’t been doing them lately. I’ve only been blogging for 2 1/2 months and my 3 month anniversary is on October 1st, 2020.

    1. Sophie Harriet says:

      That’s great that you’ve been blogging for nearly 3 months – keep it up! I find it helps to keep track of my stats because it motivates me to work to improve them!

  2. Congratulations on two years of blogging! 🎉 I enjoy reading your posts! Here is to the next 2 years!

    1. Sophie Harriet says:

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you enjoy reading my posts, I enjoy yours too 😊

  3. I love seeing how far people have come with there blogging! It really makes me motivated! Thanks for sharing this!

    Amber | The Unpredicted Page

    1. Sophie Harriet says:

      You’re welcome, I’m glad to have motivated you!

  4. Dominique says:

    Congrats on reaching your second year of blogging. I wish all the best on your goals for the next year.

    1. Sophie Harriet says:

      Thank you so much!

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