Growing Your Blog Traffic by 20,000 Visitors Per Month: Myth or Reality?
Cyberspace promises from one expert or another seem to be thrown around like candy these days; pie in the sky achievements that sounds improbably at best. Bloggers who claim they average $10k per month in revenue, website owners who have grown traffic by 20k+ per month, Instagrammers who attain 100k followers in the first week.
Any casual search on Pinterest will drum up stories of massive traffic boosts, enormous monthly earnings, and “going viral”. I even know someone who was so intent on boosting his own blog that his primary focus was helping other people go digital – by sharing his proof of income publicly every month.
Are these numbers realistic? Does the average blogger or influencer have the opportunity to achieve such lofty goals? Or maybe, just maybe, these lofty claims are shared in colorful visuals on sites like Pinterest and Instagram as clickbait.
Today’s article takes a “myth buster” deconstructionist approach, to help us learn if the claims folks make about growing their blog are based more in dreams or are grounded in reality and actual facts.
Note: This article is not meant to call out specific bloggers, but rather to highlight a general trend happening around the internet. Naturally, examples are useful to come to a conclusion of sorts, so I did a simple Pinterest search, “Blogging”, to see the results. Below are the posts that stuck like sore thumbs, the lofty claims of the bunch, worth investigating as Clickbait vs. Useful Facts. Below, I share my personal take on the claims made in the articles based on my professional experience as Content Manager, long-time blogger, and social media experts.
This article starts out solid. She references past articles (link builder, sure), but neither of them are related to money. The next sentence references books she read on how to achieve major blog success, also linking to those authors’ books, as expected and required. I’m wondering, though, if maybe the author is building up her following and earning through link kickbacks.
Regardless, what I really appreciate about Chelsey, the DIY Budget Girl, is her transparency and willingness to prove her claims. She shares 2 months of Google Analytics so we can see the numbers. It’s easy to see that they are indeed really, really good, and she did in fact double her page views. Chelsey goes on to explain how she made this happen.
My Vote: Useful and based in reality.
Wow! This is quite a claim, one that I was dying to deconstruct. The blogger, Michelle, shares a lot of information in this one post, and a lot of it is about her income (kind of like the friend I mentioned earlier). Her “income report” is less of a report, and more like Michelle explaining what she made. There is one small area at the bottom of the article that displays what appears to be a screenshot of some monetary value, apparently her income from December, 2015. This could be real, or it might not be. Based on her article and the information shared there is no way to know. Nonetheless, it’s a compelling read, and we all want to be the Cinderella Blogger whose glass slipper turns out to be worth $300k per year.
My Vote: Inconclusive, thus clickbait.
Not too unsurprising, this article is written by the same author as the previous article. A majority of this article’s content is regurgitated and copied for the 300k article discussed above. In other words, half of this article is not unique content, and I have a sneaking suspicion that Michelle uses the same content copying technique in all of her income-based articles. Some of the content is unique, discussing her income from May, 2015. She shares a monthly income screenshot report nearly identical to the one from December, minus the monetary value. All in all, I would not be keen to read this gal’s blog, her articles, or follow her content. Although she does share other content related to her wedding, some travel, and pets, her main focus is money – what she makes, how she makes it, how she can help you make it (if you click on her blog, and keep clicking).
So keep on a’clickin’, because that just helps her earn more……
My Vote: Clickbait
This article reads like red velveteen cake. It’s tasty, digestible, fluffy, yet has substance. The only piece missing for me is actual proof of the growth, but sometimes you just don’t know that your audience is going to expand to the point it would be worth a pre-screenshot and a post-screenshot. If you did, then you would either be a fortune teller, or you would be someone who paid for their followers.
The fact that these numbers are actually attainable and not completely unrealistic also give me hope that Chrystie, the author, has valuable content to share.
My Vote: Useful
$12k sounds like much more of an achievable number than 20k, plus this author includes both her blog her business in the equation. I had no idea whose article it was that I clicked on, and then I realized it was one of my favorite bloggers, Melyssa Griffin, whom I find to be a phenomenal businesswoman and blogger. That aside, her income report is more than thorough, plus she shares Google Analytics, details on how much money she spends on her business (which is a lot), and is transparent about the fact that much of her income is from web design clients.
My Vote: Useful and practical.
Oh, and just in case you were feeling extra AWESOME after reading these articles, and ready to take on the world, you might as well just throw your confidence in the garbage:
Take this article for what it’s worth. Maybe the points are dead-on for some of you reading this, or maybe they are way off the mark. Either way, extract the useful bits and leave the rest in the dust because as we can tell from the claims above, no one has an exact blog-money-making-science, and not everyone is transparent enough about their success to help us determine if certain achievements are possible.
In the end, only you know what is possible for you. You might just be the next blogger surpassing half a million dollars, willing to share your road to success with others.