I’ve had every intention of posting monthly behind-the-scenes updates on Camp FIRE, but when life gets in the way, this humble blog is lowest on the ol’ priority list. My post frequency suffers as a result. But as luck would have it, I’ve got a bit of time today to try and crank out a quick update for those interested in following the growth of Camp FIRE.
So here’s what happened in April 2019 on Camp FIRE Finance.
Table of Contents
- Some of the numbers I track on Camp FIRE Finance
- Some of the events I track on Camp FIRE
- Top Finance Blog Progress
- Other notable Events on Camp FIRE in April
- Marketing Efforts
- But wait, there’s more!
Some of the numbers I track on Camp FIRE Finance
April was the second best month every for Camp FIRE.
- Our global FI/RE blog directory grew by 74%! (if you’re a blogger, here’s how to create a blog directory listing for your site. I really see no downside here for bloggers. Just free SEO juice and you’ll also be added to our daily FIRE feed, which is always good for some clicks)
- Site sessions were up 9%
- Our email list grew by 4%
I’m pretty happy with those numbers, but even though sessions were up in April, my overall site traffic was down just a bit compared to March. That’s not entirely surprising since April is a shorter month than March is.
Ideally I’d like to be growing enough that one fewer calendar day wouldn’t make a difference in site traffic, but I suppose not every month can be a growth month. And March was a record month for us in every single category.
So the fact that April was even close to matching the previous month’s numbers is a good thing. It shows that last month wasn’t a fluke.
Traffic in April
As usual, my primary source of traffic is Google. Organic growth is more predictable and sustainable, so I’m happy with this breakdown.
I really need to rethink the amount of time I spend promoting my site on Twitter because it’s just not great for a lot of traffic. 🙂
Some of the events I track on Camp FIRE
In addition to featuring posts each day from my fellow personal finance bloggers, I also try to publish a few original posts each month. Original content comes from me and from my Contributors.
My own posts
- I published 3 posts of my own:
- I published 3 guest posts as well:
Speaking of these contributor articles … guest posting is a fantastic way to get an SEO boost for the key pages and posts on your site. So if you’ve got some keystone content on your site and want to give it a boost in search rankings, consider guest posting on Camp FIRE with a link back to your keystone content. Our Domain Authority keeps getting better, so a link back should be worth the time and effort it takes to write a post.
Top Finance Blog Progress
Some of you might recognize Modest Money for their “Top Finance Blog” badges. I see them on quite a few personal finance websites. When I first Created Camp FIRE, it was clocking in on the Modest Money scale somewhere in the 700s. Today, Camp FIRE Finance is at #157 (note, that badge number is dynamic and changes automatically, but at the time of writing this post on 5/2/19 it read #157):
I don’t know what that means. But it’s a benchmark I’ve kept my eye on and I’m always happy to see that number improve. The number is calculated on on three scores:
- Social Media
These three numbers are combined to give you an overall score, and then you’re ranked against all of the other personal finance blogs. You can read about the methodology here. Again, I’m not sure how much weight this should carry, but it’s something I track and seeing the number improve makes me happy.
Other notable Events on Camp FIRE in April
I had two new calculators created:
I love calculators in blog posts. Over the past year or so I’ve had a few created, and at the end of April I launched these two:
- Break Even Point calculator (I really like this one!)
- Time Currency calculator (as linked above)
New look and theme
I changed the Camp FIRE theme in April. As WordPress bloggers know, this isn’t a minor thing to do, because it can easily break your site.
Luckily, my theme swap went off without a hitch. I’m now using the Monochrome Pro Theme from Studio Press (I was using the Metro Pro Theme). I really liked the MetroPro theme, but Monochrome is a clean and simple design with the full-width functionality I was looking for.
I’m actually going to update Get Rich Quick’ish to the MetroPro theme very soon because I really like it. It just wasn’t the look I wanted for Camp FIRE.
Along with updating my theme, I also rolled out a new, simplified homepage last month. Hopefully this will lead to faster page load times, better SEO, and will be easier to navigate for my readers. If you have any feedback, let me know!
Notable mentions in April
I picked up a mention/feature from Lifehacker. That gave me a nice 3 day spike in traffic. I also noticed that this Lifehacker traffic signed up for my newsletter at a higher rate than other traffic. That’s interesting to me.
I’ve had a tough time building an email list, so I’m constantly looking for ways to improve that part of Camp FIRE.
At the end of April I committed to giving Pinterest another try. I’ve seen too many bloggers get significant amounts of traffic from Pinterest to NOT give it another shot. Plus, my attempts in the past were kind of weak. This time I’m really dedicating some time to doing things correctly and am really trying to learn how to use that site.
Going to focus on my #Pinterest game.
No idea what I’m doing, but let’s see if I can improve on my current 4.1k viewers number.
Wish me luck! pic.twitter.com/SvyeMjCFAb
— Get Rich Quick’ish (@GetRichQuickish) April 25, 2019
So I connected with a non-PF blogger, Pinterest expert that was recommended to me and got a very quick crash course coaching session (say that three times fast). I was really just looking for someone to tell me what I should be doing first, then what my second step should be with Pinterest.
She told me that step 1 is to sign up for a Tailwind account. So I did. Step two was to join some boards, join some Tribes (this is something specific to Tailwind), and to start pinning.
So that’s what I’m doing. I feel like a one-legged man on a tightrope, unsure what my next step should be. But for now, I’m out there swinging. Check back for my May report and let’s see if I can get that traffic up. If I do, I’ll be sure to give you an in-depth review of the things I’m doing.
Update: as of 5/2 my monthly views are 5,300. Not bad for a week of work. I think??
But wait, there’s more!
How could I forget about 425 Day!?! While not really affiliated with Camp FIRE, I also launched a new event on April 25th called International Financial Independence Awareness Day.
We chose April 25th because of the numerical numbers in that date, 4/25. As in the 4% Rule and the Rule of 25. Clever, right?!
About 15 bloggers wrote posts telling their readers what Financial Independence means to them and how pursuing it has changed their life for the better.
I’ll keep tinkering with that 425Day.com throughout the year and by next April 25th, we should have a much bigger and better day!
I think that’s it for April? Overall it was a good month and I feel like I’ve got some momentum headed into May. Any questions? Hit me up in the comment section below.