I started blogging in late October and had no idea what I was doing! Now my first full month of blogging has come to a close, and I wanted to share what this month has looked like. Keep in mind, I started on October 21st with everything at zero. I didn’t have any blog posts written, I didn’t have any social media followers, I had no one on my newsletter list, and I wasn’t part of any groups on Facebook or Pinterest. Truthfully, I didn’t even know how to turn those zeros into real numbers when I paid for my Bluehost hosting and domain name. I just went for it and then learned along the way (which is basically what I’m still doing).
Blogging – Day 1 to Day 30
Here’s what my numbers looked like on November 1st (a few days after I started blogging):
Blog Posts: 8
Monthly Views: 0
Newsletter Subscribers: 0
Facebook Followers: 0
Pinterest Followers: 0
Twitter Followers: 0
Instagram Followers: 0
(I wrote and published eight blog posts from October 21st-October 31st with no views or social media engagement)
Here’s what my numbers look like now:
Blog Posts: 24
Monthly Views: 2,278
Newletter Subscribers: 46
Facebook Followers: 358
Pinterest Followers: 159
Twitter Followers: 261
Instagram Followers: 126
I’m really pleased with my progress in the last 30 days! I would have done things a bit differently if given the chance, but I’m still really excited about how my blog has grown and evolved in the last month.
I’ve recently learned that not everyone starts monetizing their blog from day one… Again, I had no idea what I was doing when I started, so I started adding affiliate links to my first blog post. I don’t think this was necessarily the wrong way to do it, but I don’t know if it was the right way either.
Here’s what my blog income for November looks like:
My expenses definitely exceeded the little revenue that I brought in during November. Here’s what all of my blog expenses were:
One year of Bluehost: $118.08
One month of Tailwind: $14.99
Awin Affiliate sign up: $5.00
The year of Bluehost was completely worth the price! It was so easy to claim a domain name and set up my website through WordPress, all within Bluehost. Bluehost made it feel like a one stop shop… It was one expense and everything was included. I can’t get over how easy that set up was! You can sign up for Bluehost and start your blogging journey here.
I only signed up for a month of Tailwind because I’m still trying to decide if I like it and if I think it’s beneficial. Bloggers rave about how great Tailwind is, but so far I’m not impressed. I am part of some tribes and I have been using it to schedule pins, but I don’t feel like it’s making a difference in my Pinterest success so far. We’ll see!
I wish I wouldn’t have spent the $5 to sign up for the Awin affiliate program. I don’t think it’s an affiliate source I’ll be using for at least awhile since I’m focusing on other affiliate sites that are easier to use and manage.
Five Blogging Resources
I have used so many blogging resources in the last 30 days. I’m working on creating a roundup of all of them with tips on how to use them effectively as a new blogger. For now though, these are five of them that I wouldn’t have been able to get through the first month without!
I know that I just talked about Bluehost, but it made the whole process of setting up a blog so much easier than I imagined. I paid for a year of hosting, which included my domain name and additional features. The best feature they offer is 1-click WordPress installation. It was incredibly easy to set up my website, choose a theme, and get right to blogging.
If you’re thinking about starting a blog, my BEST advice is to use Bluehost. You can sign up through my affiliate link here.
I wouldn’t recommend Bluehost if I didn’t really think it was the best option for a new blogger. When my husband and I got married, I tried to create a personal website where the two of us could add blog posts and pictures and whatnot. I went through GoDaddy and I linked it with WordPress. It was a pain in the butt, and I ended up crying for a bit because it was so overwhelming. It was also more expensive than Bluehost, but it included so much more hassle. To be fair, maybe I just didn’t know what I was doing and went about it all wrong. That being said, I didn’t know what I was doing with Bluehost either, and it was still really easy!
You know how bloggers have those perfect photos for their post’s main image? I started out thinking that each blogger took every one of those themselves. This is where I roll my eyes at myself because obviously stock photos are a thing. It turns out there are a bunch of websites where you can download free stock photos. Pexels is my go to for getting free stock photos that I can use in my blog posts. It’s easy to browse their photos, download them, and put them to use. Most photos are horizontal, so they do require some editing to make them suitable for Pinterest, but it’s such a great place to start!
3. Amazon Affiliate
I’m so glad that I found out about the Amazon Affiliate program early on in my blogging journey. I’ve signed up for a few other affiliate programs, but Amazon is definitely my favorite. You can get an affiliate link for almost anything. You can buy some pinecones here if you want… I personally don’t have a current need for crafting pinecones, but it helps make my point that you can link anything through the Amazon Affiliate program. It gives you so much freedom in your blog posts because you write about almost any product you love AND get an affiliate income if people purchase it.
Almost every blogger says that Pinterest is the key to a successful blog. I haven’t had any blogging miracles via Pinterest, but it has given me the majority of my page views in the last week. Plus, more than half of my email subscribers viewed my blog through Pinterest first. One of the best things about Pinterest is that it’s completely free and most people use it already. If you create pinnable photos and stay active on Pinterest, it will help you out!
Another reason why Pinterest is such a valuable resource in the first month of blogging is because it makes it so easy to find other blogs. I find it crucial to look at other blogs for various reasons. One of which is to interact with other bloggers who are writing about similar things. Sharing other people’s blogs and interacting with them via comments is really important. Another reason why I love that Pinterest makes it so easy to find other blogs is because other bloggers already know what they’re doing! Not only do they know what they’re doing, but they share their lovely knowledge with the world via their blog. Other people’s blogging knowledge was so helpful for me during the last month.
I wanted to build a newsletter list from the beginning and I chose MailerLite for that. I actually already had a MailerLite account because I used it to send mine and my husband’s reception invites, reminders, and information to everyone via email. (Please note that this is not what MailerLite is intended for, and I worked really hard to make it work for that purpose… If I had a do over, I would not ever choose to do that again!)
One of the best things about MailerLite is that it’s free for your first 1000 newsletter subscribers. I didn’t know how well my blogging journey would go, and I didn’t know if my newsletter list would grow at all, so I wanted a free option. The other benefit of MailerLite is that it’s really easy to use. You can create really great emails within the website and schedule them to send to your subscribers on whatever day and time you choose. There are plenty of other features of MailerLite that I really like, but the bottom line is it’s really easy to use if you don’t know what you’re doing!
So overall, I’m really happy with how my first month of blogging turned out. I’ve learned so much, utilized so much advice, and implemented so many resources! I feel like my head is constantly spinning with ideas of how I can keep improving my blog, and I always have to remind myself that I can’t do it all at once.
If you’re reading this and considering starting a blog, do it. Start it today. Even if you have no idea what you’re doing, there are so many resources and people that can help you. If you don’t know where to even start, read my post about starting a blog in three easy steps.
Still unsure if you want to start blogging? Have questions about what to do once you sign up with Bluehost? Comment on this post or send me an email! I’m happy to help however I can, even if it’s just by sending you to a different blog with the answers!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended. Read my full disclosure policy here.