Guys, I did it! I hit my November target of 150,000 pageviews!

And, OK, I only just made it by the skin of my teeth: even so, this is a number that’s been eluding me for months now, and although it was a completely arbitrary target to set myself, it feels good to have managed it anyway. Here’s how the month looked:

how my blog got 150,000 pageviews in Novemeber : blog traffic report

PAGEVIEWS: 150,835 (last month 132,177)

UNIQUE VISITORS:  56,296 (last month 45,655)

 

Novemer pageviews - ForeverAmber.co.uk

ForeverAmber.co.uk traffic report

There were two different factors which contributed to the increase in traffic this month: one of them was Pinterest, which I’ll get to soon (well, soon-ish, knowing me); the other was down to a couple of posts which performed better than expected, and which account for the two spikes in traffic you can see. Here are the top performing posts for November…

Top Content :   Most Viewed Posts

The first spike you can see in the graph above, right at the start of the month, was down to my October Traffic Report, which did well in a couple of Facebook groups for bloggers. Now, I’ve been promoting my posts in these groups for a while now (on and off), and I’ve never really seen much of a result from it, so what was it about this post that made the difference? Two things:

01. The title.

When I was putting that post together, the working title was simply “October Traffic Report”, which is factual, but not very interesting. In fact, it kinda makes it sound like something to do with roads, doesn’t it? By changing it to “How I Got 130,000 Pageviews”, it gave it a bit of added drama: the number helped create a bit of interest, the “how to” element tells people there might be some useful information in the post, and both of those things make them more likely to click.

02. Promoting the post to a targeted audience

As I said, I’ve tried promoting posts in Facebook groups before, and had almost given up on it, because to be completely honest, a lot of those groups end up just being link dumps: people are more interested in promoting their own blogs than in reading someone else’s, so they just post their link then run. It stands to reason, though, that if bloggers are mostly interested in promoting their blogs, a post containing information on how to do that will be of more interest than a post about fashion, say: so by posting this link to the right audience, I got a lot more interest than might otherwise have been the case.

The second spike you can see, meanwhile, came from the ‘What Happened When I Let My Husband Pick My Outfit‘ post. Interestingly (or, you know, maybe not), I tried promoting that post in the same Facebook groups as the Blog Traffic Report, and it got little to no interest at all – which kinda proves that you need to think carefully about where you do your promoting, because what works for one post might not work for another. This post got most of its traffic from Twitter, and from my own Facebook page. It also got a lot more views than usual from my regular readers – again, probably because of the title.

The lesson: pay attention to the title of your posts, and promote them to the right people.

Top Content: Most Commented

This was a much better month for comments than October, mostly because I learned my lesson from that dismal month, and wrote more of the type of posts that people like to comment on. Actually, I’m giving myself too much credit in saying I learned my lesson: it was partly due to the weather, which meant I couldn’t get outside to take outfit posts as often as I normally do, and was forced to come up with some different content instead. Oh well, it seemed to work: although I was surprised to see one of the aforementioned outfit posts amongst the most commented – that almost never happens!

Top Referrers:

November referrals to ForeverAmber.co.uk

(Shout out to Catherine at Not Dressed as Lamb for the mention this month 🙂 )

One of the biggest differences this month  was in the amount of traffic coming from Pinterest. Last month Pinterest sent 6,287 visitors to the site: this month it sent 11,609 – an increase of 111%.  I spent a lot of time on Pinterest this month, and am probably going to do a follow-up post talking about the various things I did which helped increase the traffic I get from it. With that said, I still don’t think I’m making the most of Pinterest, so I have a lot to learn: here are the pins which were most popular in November:

   Makeup storage ideas

 How to walk in high heels

 Retro-inspired capsule wardrobe

 Packing list for a beach holiday

 Best foundation for pale skin

The lesson: as with comments, the posts which perform best on Pinterest tend to be the ones which are offering some kind of advice, or otherwise helping the reader in some way, so if you want to increase your traffic from Pinterest, those are good posts to concentrate on. I’ll try to get a Pinterest-specific post up soon, though, so look out for that if you’re interested!

What I tried this month to grow my blog: 

Pinterest, in a nutshell. I’m more of a single-tasker than a multi-tasker, so I decided to dedicate most of my free time in November to trying to figure out how to make better use of the network. It did work, but as I said, I still feel I could be making more of Pinterest, so watch this space!

Also in November I revamped the “fashion” category of the site, and tried to optimise it a bit for search engines: it’s now one of the most viewed pages on the site, so I think it was worth doing. I did intend to do the same thing for the other pages, but only managed to do the “blogging” category (which so far has had no effect whatsoever – sad trombone!) before running out of time, energy and enthusiasm! I’ll try to get back to that at some point, but in the meantime…

December Goals:

I’m not going to set a specific traffic goal for this month: December is always a slow month for my blogs because of the Christmas holidays (people don’t want to read blogs when they’re busy celebrating, and I like to take some time off then, too!), so I’m anticipating a drop in traffic, which I don’t think I can do much about, unfortunately. I’ve also been ill for most of the first week of the month, and have struggled just to keep up with regular posting, so I’ve already fallen a bit behind. I’m really not expecting great things for this month, then, although I would really like to finish the ebook on blogging which I started ages ago, and didn’t make much progress with: it’s going to be a really busy month, and I’m already getting a bit stressed about Christmas etc, so I’m not sure where I’ll find the time, but it would nice to have it complete by the start of the new year. Let’s just see how that goes…

31 Comments
  1. Yhank you so much for sharing this. For me it really proves that one can still make money from real blogging, and not just from selling e-books and so on.
    How did you start to get referrals from pinterest? I just don’t get anything from there and it makes me a bit sad. Is it outfit posts that makes it better on there or is it the kind of pictures with text on them?/Ida

  2. This is one of the most informative blogging posts I have read. I am definitely going to try to use pinterest more xo http://www.tinyurl.com/teacupblog

  3. Hi Amber, I agree on the Facebook group and link dumping as people are more interested in promoting their own blog then going to visit other people blog. I get a lot of my traffic from Twitter and bloglovin. Oh have you ever thought of putting the website on Stumbleupon? I also get a lot of traffic from there, it might help. xx

  4. Congratulations! I can’t wait for your post about Pinterest, I know I should pay more attention to it, especially with my food blog, but I keep postponing and spend too much time on Facebook.

    1. It’s Twitter – if you don’t know what a referrer is, you can just either click on it or type it into your browser and it will take you to the site 🙂

  5. I think that the ‘husband-dressed-me’ challenge was so popular because it was funny to read and see! It would be funny to see also a ‘husband did my make-up’ post, but I fear that the results wouldn’t be half as good as the outfit-challenge ones, lol

  6. Can’t wait to see how you use Pinterest! I’ve never gotten a ton of traffic from there, but I’ve had luck with Google+, Stumble Upon, and Twitter 🙂 Just created a Facebook for my blog recently so it’s slowly bringing in some traffic.

  7. YAY!!!!

    As soon as I saw the title I was happy for you, because I knew it’s a goal you’d been wanting to hit. I’m glad you were able to reach it, and it’s interesting to see what kind of changes you made that got you there. I’d noticed recently that your titles had changed up a bit- not in a bad way, but I did notice the changes.

    I’m literally waiting on the edge of my chair for your ebook… your blog is one of the ones I’ve kept an eye on over the years, so it’ll be interesting to see the kind of advice you’ve gleaned. I can’t wait to read it!

  8. Congratulations Amber! That’s a lot of hard work rewarded. I’ve been having trouble leaving comments for a couple of weeks now, I write them, press submit and they just never post 🙁

  9. Congratulations Amber! That’s a lot of hard work rewarded. I’ve been having trouble leaving comments for a couple of weeks now, I write them, press submit and they just never post 🙁

    (trying again and ticking subscribe by email to change it up…)

  10. This is awesome, congratulations!! I’ve started setting myself more blog goals recently – I used to do it back when I started blogging but just forgot about it once I left uni and started working (so, um, like more than 3 years ago now, oops!). Anyway, I’m back onto doing it now and it’s really interesting to see as you start to notice what works and what doesn’t. I’ll be really interested to see your Pinterest post – I’ve just got into using it more recently after seeing one of my pins go really well. It’s now my highest referrer too so I’m trying to use it more to its full potential. It’ll be great to see your post on what you’ve been doing though as I have noticed your pins popping up more and more in my feed 🙂

  11. I’m curious how you monetize your traffic. On my iPad I don’t see any ads. I’m Not sure if you’re using affiliate links. Check out Padsquad and/or a network like The Blogger Network or AdThrive…If you haven’t already.

    Anyway, great work!

    Blog on,
    Janet

    1. I use Handpicked Media for display ads: there’s one directly under the header, one in the sidebar and one at the bottom of each post. They’re more prominent on the desktop view, but I get a lot of complaints about the number of adverts on the site, so it’s really interesting that you thought it wasn’t monetised! I also use affiliate links and sponsored posts – there’s a post here about how I make money from blogging:

      http://www.foreveramber.co.uk/2015/05/how-i-make-money-from-blogging.html

  12. Great tips, thank you! I am fairly new to this whole blogging thing and while I write simply for the love of writing, I would like to have more views and comments! I am working on that and have started using Pinterest more. i have not seen an increase due to it though.

  13. First – major congrats! Also I find that changing up the blog post title is such a big help. Part of my December goal is to revaluate my top content, upgrade the SEO of old posts & just try to make some changes to make things better. I also have a redesign coming up.

    -M
    http://www.violetroots.com

  14. Amber this is yet another awesome post – I need to follow this to the letter to get my stats up!! I’m so glad my mention gave you some traffic – I’m never sure whether my favourite links posts ever send any traffic to those mentioned but it obviously does which is great. As you were my featured blogger in my blogroll too I’m sure that made a difference as well 🙂

    This is INVALUABLE information for me… I’ve got to sit down and make a note of everything you’ve done. As I mentioned on Twitter, please could you could round my house and give me a one-on-one masterclass? Pretty pleeeeeeease…?!!!!!!!

    Catherine x

  15. Keep doing what your doing here lovely lady! Great job on all of this. I think it is awesome that you are putting together a goal list. That is so important for success. If you don’t start with your goals, then you have nothing to work towards.

    Keep living unstoppable!

  16. Yay! Well done. I’ve taken some of your blogging advice lately, and I’m happy to be making progress with a few things myself. (It’s baby baby steps at this point, but I will take it.) Keep these posts coming, they are so informative. Looking forward to that Pinterest one…

  17. Hi Amber, I was looking for something online about shoes and came across your shoeperwoman site which then lead me to this site. You must me a hard working seo guru, I love to meet journalist or ex journalist who are now bloggers because I feel blogging is kinda like self taught journalism of little things to big things to personal things, well in a weird way. Anyway I have fallen in love with both sites, I think was did it was the husband make up post as its the first I read before thinking ok I need to keep connected! plus I love your hair! its so bright and beautiful and I love bright! and the brightness of the shoeperwoman site too. So you got a new reader. Thanks for your honest blog help posts, very helpful to those trying 🙂
    hugs 🙂
    http://www.yvonnedzifa.com

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