This monthly travel blog traffic report is for you to see the whole travel and blogging journey of Gamin Traveler. We value the time you have spent in reading the posts in the blog and we want to be HONEST to you about the work that we do here. And click here to see our blogging updates in 2017.
On writing a monthly travel blog traffic report: Why we share this?
Like you, we also LOVE travel. We dream about it all the time. When we are home, we can’t stop thinking about it. We plan and visualize about many more countries to visit. When we are on the road, we are totally in our best element.
Like you, the adventure of planning and actually traveling makes us GENUINELY happy.
That’s how Gamin Traveler was born. It started just as a collection of travel stories from the past few years. And now, it’s about providing tactical guides and inspirational stories of how to travel the world with as less money as possible, and still find the value and real meaning to it. The blog requires work, and a hard and solid one at that, and for those who choose this path, we also want to provide our journey as a story and guide.
I first learned about this type of HONEST blogging from Buffer, a company I really respect and love. We’d been using their products and guides for a while now, and while we haven’t met them in person, it feels like we really know them to the core.
We will be doing this every month, plus more travel guides and tutorials in between because, like you, we needed to see that other people are doing it successfully. And actually loving the work behind it. It keeps us inspired.
So here we go…
For this month’s honest report, we will show you traffic and income results we got from Dec 12 – Jan 11, 2016. You will find out more about what blog planning, creation, and techniques we are using to produce the work and the results we have, how we measure the results we are getting, where things didn’t work out well for the blog this month, what has been working well for the blog, and what we are planning to do for the next 30 days.
Whether you are a new travel blogger, just trying to understand the whole realm of writing stories online, or if you’re a veteran internet marketer, sharing your travel stories since Day 1 and earning book deals and sponsorships, we are sure you’ll learn something. This travel blog traffic report is our letter to you, that we are open to share all the lessons we learn along the way. We will be honest and raw, and we will have fun, together.
Here’s a quick summary of the blog views we had for the 2nd month of the blog:
Page Views this month: 15, 150
Users: 7, 159
Email Conversion Rate: 2.3%
If we have to say in one statement why we had lower views this month, it would be because we decided to not continue writing in Ruben’s language, Spanish. It was a tough decision to make, but again, we made that step to have a focus on the blog, and use our skills and time properly.
You will see that although there were many reds (decrease in sessions, users and pageviews) for this month, we got greens for bounce rate, session durations and pages/session. That means for this month, people have stayed and read more posts and spent longer time on the blog on average, than last month. There were also more returning readers than last month, and you guys, should know, you rock!!!
What we did this month vs. last month.
Good – More interviews with other travel bloggers, we are sharing our posts to more channels, guest posted on other travel bloggers’ sites, and tried to be friends with more people.
Bad – We were less promotional than we should be doing.
What we will be doing next? More surveys from us, and launching our free email course. Subscribe to our email travele blogger email list to get the details when it’s ready here.
Understanding the Gamin Traveler readers and followers
We look for different signals and measure them, to make sure we have a clear picture of the readers that we have. One of the ways we do that is by looking at the top posts that get shared a lot from the blog:
From those shares, we can say that the readers want MORE the tactical guides of how to do particular travel activities like sleeping, hitchhiking, how to travel in Myanmar in a budget and the like. Apart from social shares, one big signal in understanding audience are the blog comments.
Here are some feedback we got from comments on this month’s posts:
These are comments from people saying they were happy about the posts:
Comments where people said they will/they have taken action:
Comments from readers giving us ideas on what to write about:
Comments about concerns that readers have, which are very important:
Your comments make us understand how we are making value for you, and that we know we are in the right path. We actually got messages from other people asking us to make guides for other countries in Asia, so those are already planned for writing.
Having an understanding of what you like to see on the blog, what is helpful, what is not, what more of which things you like, make it clear to us where should we be spending our time. We have actually added one-click, emoji surveys at the bottom of the posts (should only appear once, until you close or pick an emoji), so you can tell us if you felt happy or not about a particular post you just read. If you send us your comments, that will be very helpful. Here’s what we have now:
Now, it is very important for us to understand who specifically is and who’s not reading the blog. Why? Because we can’t write articles that is not helping anyone. Plus we need to stay focused for you to have a much more dense collection of travel information.
So what Gamin Traveler is not:
Luxury travel guides – Ruben doesn’t really do this. I remembered once when he mentioned kids not having enough water in Africa, and I cried for two hours. We will stand by this belief, but will continue to make products and courses for the blog. Our main goal is to eventually, both of us to work full time on the blog, so we can spend our energy creating more solid guides here, and finally MEETING people in person. It’s also our goal for this blog to start funding our travels.
Here are more of the analytics that provide us info of who are reading the blog:
The Blog Traffic: Where are we promoting?
These are the views from the blog by specific blog posts:
Social Media Follower Growth:
Growing your Email List
Email list is one of the most important assets that you can build for your blog. It’s a validation that people really want to receive updates from you in their personal inbox. It’s your direct communication with readers.
For the blog, we use Mailchimp. There are many email services that offer great services, and for now, Mailchimp offers us the ease of sending quick emails to readers about new posts. Also, for every email you sent, it provides you an email benchmark. You can see if you are meeting travel industry standards, or not. So far, we are still above the usual email open rate that travel industries get.
This is our updated no. of email subscribers by Jan 12, 2016.
What are our next plans for the blog:
We have so many plans, but we make sure that what we launch are the ones that we can really work on.
Some of the few things we are working on:
-Launching a FREE email course for travelers who are interested in starting a blog and growing a following from zero.
-Sending out surveys to understand what people are reading, what their problems are on the site, and if they have preferences in future posts. Surveys will be our biggest next step for Gamin Traveler. (You should see these emoji surveys popping up. at the bottom of the blog page).
-Getting more active on social with a solid schedule of posting and engagement. We haven’t been very solid on our strategy here. I, for one, have been so wrapped up with personal client work. The 3rd month of the blog will be a start for me to share more work with Ruben, have content strategies and better analytics, testing and analysis of the results we are getting.
If you have read the previous HONEST report, you will quickly realize that this month didn’t include any $ amounts. Why? We decided not to go mainstream on offering any services and products on Gamin Traveler just yet. We have some affiliate partners we are working with, but since we are both working part time on the blog, both on different schedules (Ruben mostly works on weekdays and I work on my tasks on the weekends), we really have to be mindful of what we are focusing on. The first 60 days of the blog have been about building the site, creating content, building relationships, understanding readers, and learning the travel industry. Your post comments keep us motivated in working hard on the blog. We have much more stuff cooking in the background, and we are excited to give it all to you.
In line with that, we have a special project beginning on Feb 23, and that will be running until March 23. A 31-day special project. This is something we are both excited about, me also nervous. It will be my first time!!! So we will share all the juicy details on this one in a couple of weeks.
How we earn from the blog
We have set up the blog with affiliate links from tools that we are actually using. We spend time choosing the services that we use with the blog, so we only recommend the ones that we actually trust and use. This will be a side income for us, but mainly, what we both enjoy doing are creating guides. So that’s what we are focusing on now.
Quick summary of affiliate income:
Last month – $100
This month – $50
Now, you have taken a peak at our 60-day travel blog journey. If you are going through your own travel journey as well, or about to start, hit us up with questions and we’ll get back to you. And as a little thank you for reading this post, fire up some questions in the comments, and I will reply to them. 😉
Hopefully you enjoyed this month’s travel blog traffic report.
We’ll be in touch with more guides and tutorials in helping you grow your blog.
Happy journeys to all of us.