Blogging Case Study – Teen Financial Freedom
Welcome to our Blogging Case Study!
So I launched the Teen Financial Freedom blog on July 28, 2019, and what a journey has it been.
Currently, it is May 12, 2020 at the time of writing this, so that means that this blog has been active for around 9 months.
I’ve learned a lot along the way and my goal in this post is to document some of the journey, share some of our stats, and share our plans for the future. So if you’re interested in that stick around to read this blogging case study.
So I’ve wanted to start a blog for several years, and I finally built up enough courage to do it last summer.
I decided to write about business and finance on this blog because those are the topics that excite me the most and I feel that I can write the most about.
When I started, I didn’t know what I was doing, but I started nonetheless.
After creating the website, writing a few posts, and attempting to do social media marketing, I realized that blogging was a lot harder than I thought it was.
Honestly, there have been several times where I have genuinely considered quitting.
The only thing that kept me going was the fact that I had already put so much time that I feel like I have no choice but to succeed. I also reminded myself that those who quit never have a chance to see if they would ever succeed.
I knew that it takes time to have success with a blog, but it’s tough to know how much time it will take. People say it takes 3-6 months for SEO to take off, but when we reached that milestone, I still didn’t feel like I was at the traffic numbers that I wanted.
So I couldn’t help but feel that I was doing something wrong. And honestly, I probably am doing something wrong to do this day. But, I’m still happy with the progress that I have made and I know that some progress is better than none.
Along the way, I met several people, some of which decided to join me on this journey. I’m lucky to have a team of 3 other people blogging with me currently.
I’m extremely grateful that these fellow teens have jumped on board with me, and I don’t know if I would still be doing this without them.
For the most part, we have posted every week. Total, we have around 40 posts as of now. Each post is an average of 2000 words and targets keywords with less than 1000 monthly searches.
One of the biggest problems I’ve had with this blog is keyword research. There’s a lot of generic info out there that says target keywords with low competition so you can easily rank, but there’s hardly any information that says the exact number of monthly searches you should be targeting with keyword research.
One strategy that I found was called KGR, or Keyword Golden Ratio. It involves targeting keywords with less than 250 monthly searches and limited competition. These keywords are super easy to rank for.
We did this in the beginning, but I’m not sure it worked that well. The problem is that you have to write a ton of blog posts to bring in a significant amount of traffic.
For example, if you want to get 100,000 page views a month, you would have to write 400 blog posts. If we posted weekly, that would take us 8 years to write that many posts.
Or we could target keywords with 1,000 – 2,000 monthly searches and only have to write 50 – 100 blog posts, which would only take a year or two.
So I realized that it’s better to write posts that might rank for large volume keywords than write posts that certainly rank for small volume keywords.
The only thing is that in order to rank for the larger keywords, you need domain authority and lots of backlinks. Increasing these two things is incredibly difficult and takes time.
That’s why we slowly plan to increase the search volumes that we are targeting as our site ages and becomes more authoritative.
All that aside, besides writing content, we have also done a lot of social media marketing. Those are are two main strategies, and they have worked well. So now, let’s share some stats.
As far as our stats go, they really aren’t that impressive compared to other blogs. But what excited me is the growth, not just any growth, but exponential growth!
I’m kind of a nerd so I’ve been tracking our stats from the very beginning. I’ve kept everything in a spreadsheet because it’s easy to organize things and see what you’re looking at.
I noticed a trend the other day that our monthly page views have roughly doubled each month. You can get an idea of the exponential growth when you look at this picture that is from Google Search Console which shows people clicking on our posts from the Google search results.
But, if you look closely, you can see that we have received 2,300 clicks from Google since we started our blog…which isn’t that impressive.
Now that’s not the main source of traffic, there’s social media and other search engines, but Google makes up a large portion of our traffic.
Since the beginning, we’ve received a grand total of…4,300 page views. Which again, is not that exciting.
If you look at the image above, it doesn’t look like the traffic is really growing, but that’s because sometimes a social media post would be popular and drive a lot of traffic during one day.
Overall, organic traffic is the most consistent form of traffic, which is why I get excited when I see this:
You might see that and think that what the blog has done so far isn’t that amazing, and I kind of agree. But, I don’t really look at what the blog has done in the past, instead I am focused on what the blog will do in the future.
Because, if the blog keeps growing exponentially like it has, we’ll be at 100,000 pageviews in December provided our traffic keeps growing. I don’t expect that to happen because there’s got to be a limit to this growth, but I’m excited for the possibility.
Currently, we’re right around 1,000 pageviews a month, so when I say 100,000 pageviews a month, that sounds a little crazy.
Future of Blogging
The only way I see us reaching that goal of 100,000 pageviews is if we ramp up our production. That’s why I’m excited to announce that we’ll be moving to 2 posts a week for awhile, eventually 3 posts a week, and sometimes 4 posts a week!
With summer coming around and with our team finding ourselves with a lot of time on our hands, we’ve decided to increase our production.
In addition, we’ll be changing some of the strategies that we use in hopes of improving our traffic numbers. One of the main strategies that was already discussed was keyword search volume.
New Blogging Keyword Research Strategy
Instead of targeting the very low search volume phrases, we will now start targeting keywords between 1,000 – 2,000 monthly searches. Once we start ranking for some of those posts, we’ll move to 2,000 – 5,000 monthly searches, and so on and so forth.
The goal is that once our site becomes more authoritative, we hope to rank for some of those larger keywords to drive more traffic.
In order to help build authority, we plan on doing guest posting and other link building tactics. This along with other strategies will grow our presence and increase awareness.
There’s some big plans happening with more social media marketing, a potential podcast partnership, and many more collaboration opportunities.
The future looks bright for us, we just have to keep on working!
That being said, we do have some goals that we are working toward to make sure that we are on the right track.
I’m sharing these goals along with the rest of the information shared today because I want to promote transparency with our community.
As stated earlier, one of the goals is to hit 100,000 pageviews a month. Which sounds insane seeing how we’re only at 1,000 pageviews a month right now.
But, if we keep posting, keep gaining SEO traction, and don’t give up, we’ll be there in no time.
As far as money goes, yes we would be lying if we said that our goal wasn’t to make money from this.
I started this blogging hoping for a get-rick-quick-scheme. But I’ve soon realized two things.
- It is a lot harder to make money blogging than what most people make it seem like.
- This is about so much more than making money.
Making Money Blogging
Addressing number 1, yes we’ve made a few dollars from this blog. We’ve run Google Ads here and there, but we find that we only make a few cents a day.
We also recently found out that Google Ads was massively slowing down our website, so we took them off. We took our loading time from 8 seconds to 3 seconds!
For us, a few cents a day isn’t really worth it for slow loading time. So we’re going to continue to grow our traffic in the hopes for better monetization opportunities in the future.
We’re trying to reach 25,000 pageviews a month in order to get Mediavine, which offers much higher rates than Google Ads. But of course, there’s sponsorships, affiliates, courses, and other things that we will do to make money when our traffic is larger.
Blogging is about so much more than making money
Now for number 2, we’ve realized that this is about so much more than money. If I was doing this just for the money, I would have quit a long time ago. I have spent hundreds of hours on this, and only made a few dollars.
But, there’s 3 reasons why I don’t do this for the money and they are:
- Education – By writing these posts, I’m forcing myself to learn more about the topics I write about. Someday in the future, something I learned from this will come in handy, and that will either make me a lot of money or save me a lot of money. Not to mention, improving my writing skills, learning how to build a website, and other skills have been a nice bonus.
- Productivity – Writing these blog posts has greatly boosted my productivity. Forcing myself to find new ways to save time and spend it smartly have been two things that have come from this blog. Sometimes I feel like I could be spending my time in a better way. But, let’s be honest, if I wasn’t writing these posts I’d probably be playing video games or watching Netflix.
- Impact – The biggest reason that I do this is to help other teens. If I did all of this and was able to impact just 1 other teen. It would all be worth it. I hope that something that I say in these posts helps someone in someway that transforms the rest of their life. If that happened for just 1 person, I’d be happy.
As mentioned earlier, there have been several times that I have considered quitting. It’s tough seeing your numbers low and feeling like you’re just wasting time. But, when I feel that way, I remind myself of these things:
- I’ve come too far to quit, I have to succeed now.
- Those who quit never find out whether or not they would’ve succeeded.
- This is an endurance contest, there’s over 1 billion blogs out there. I need to last longer than the majority if I want to succeed like the minority.
- I’m not doing this for the money, there are several other reasons of why I continue to do this.
- Every month the blog’s traffic continues to grow, and I never know what the traffic will look like in 1 month, 6 months, or 1 year,
STOP! If you’ve somehow managed to scroll down this far, I need to know!
I’m genuinely curious about the number of people who actually read an entire post.
If you’ve made it this far, I appreciate it, but could you do me one more favor?
Could you go down to the comments and just say something about how you made it to the bottom? If you do, tell me a little bit about yourself while you’re at it.
This is kind of an experiment and I’m excited to see the results.
Also, check out our next blogging case study from January 2021 here!
That’s it! That’s the current Teen Financial Freedom Blogging Case Study! I hope you enjoyed it! I just wanted to share some of the journey, some stats, some thoughts, and some future goals. Mostly, I wrote this for myself so I can look back in the future and see where I was in May. Thanks for reading!
For more helpful information on blogging, check out: The Essential Habits Of 6-Figure Bloggers: Secrets of 17 Successful Bloggers You Can Use to Build a Six-Figure Online Business.
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