August 2017 recap: Business mistakes, traffic snowball & a conference in Ireland

 
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I must say, I'm really getting to like these business recaps, I've been excitedly thinking about what I'm going to write all month long!

Let's start with the numbers, then get into what's been happening business-wise, then I'll follow up on how I did on my goals from this past month, and what I have coming up next month!

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Business In Numbers:

Site stats:
Monthly page views: 22,449
Pages/session: 2.04
Average session duration: 2:44

This month was a high for blog traffic, and I can really see month over month things beginning to snowball which I couldn't be happier about. But more importantly than just page views, I think it's also super valuable to also track pages/session and average session duration.

If I get 22,000 page views because I have a lot of click-baitey headlines, but everyone spends only a few seconds on my site because the content itself is useless, then do the 22,000 page views really even matter?

I can tell from the fact that y'all are spending on average almost 3 minutes on the site that the content I'm putting out there is truly useful to you. (While 3 mins sounds like nothing in life, in interwebs world, that's a good bit of time to keep someones attention!)

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Business News:

A head-smacking mistake:

If you read my You spoke, I listened. Audience Survey 2017 results post, then you know I had a rather head-smacking, and hilarious revelation this past month from tallying up the results of my survey.

In the survey I asked 'Magical website solution appears. What's your preferred format?' 'A live website audit via Skype' got the lowest number of votes ... and what did I launch last month? Live website audits. πŸ˜‚

Honestly had a good laugh at myself for that one, but I took a very helpful lesson away from it.

Tally up the darn survey results before launching something silly! Logical right? 

Here's why I launched it before tallying up the results.

I'm ALWAYS getting emails from y'all saying 'A full custom site with a designer isn't in my budget right now, I DIY'ed my site, but I don't know if I did it right. Can you give me feedback and advice on how I can improve it?'

The logical answer to that problem? A website audit.

I told myself in January I should launch website audits, after-all it made perfect sense as the solution to the problem my readers were having, but launching it kept getting put on the back burner as other tasks took priority.

While the survey was running I finally found the time to design a game plan for the service and launch it.

So I did, and was all proud of myself for launching something that I spent months thinking 'I really need to get around to that.'

I launched it before the survey was done, just because I finally found the time and felt guilty for putting it off for so long.

So where am I with the audits now? I'm toying with the idea of turning the service into a 'written, emailed to me audit' which got more than twice the number of votes of the 'live audit via Skype', and came in 4/10 out of all of the options I gave.

I'm assuming people might think its a little uncomfortable to do a video call with an expert and have the expert tell them everything that should to be fixed, live. So maybe an emailed, written audit is a little less intimidating? That's my guess. (If you have an idea as to why y'all prefer a written audit thats emailed to you as opposed to a live audit, I'd love to hear from you in the comments!)

I'm looking at this as a lesson; what you think your audience wants really could be wayyyy off, even if you're responding to a problem thats consistently landing in your inbox, so do a darn survey and just go from there.

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Future offerings:

I'm taking my future offering marching orders directly from y'all.

The 3 best scoring results of the 'Magical website solution appears. What's your preferred format?' question was a go-at-your-own-pace course, workbooks and checklists. You also let me know your biggest issues were

  • Making your site look the way you want it to
  • Picking a template
  • Organizing and laying out your content
  • Integrating your business into your site

So I plan to mix and match these formats and issues together into new offerings in the coming months.

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Upcoming conference:

Back in my travel blogging days I attended TBEX, the conference for travel bloggers when it was in Stockholm, Sweden. It was a hell of a lot of fun, and I took away some really impactful lessons from a couple of the sessions which I've implemented in my business this past year. 

I had bought a ticket to the upcoming TBEX in Ireland a couple months ago but hadn't fully decided if I'd go or not. After-all, I'm a Squarespace/business blogger, not a travel blogger.

I've been harbouring a desire to launch a YouTube channel to go along with this blog, and was listening to SPI's 'How to Set Up Your YouTube Channel to Win' podcast episode.

Who were the experts on the episode? Two travel bloggers who absolutely knew their stuff on YouTube! 

After listening to the episode, I decided that clearly, while all the examples at the conference will be travel-related, the knowledge can definitely be applied across fields.

(SPI is a podcast for anyone looking to build an online business, and regardless that the experts in the episode were travel bloggers, the info applied to anyone looking to start with YouTube).

So I'm stoked to get to go catch up with some travel blogging friends, and soak up all the blogging/social media/online business knowledge at TBEX Ireland in October this year!

If you'll be at TBEX, leave me a comment and let me know. I'd love to meet you there!

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The new tools page:

I loveee getting to know how other online business owners run the show behind-the-scenes. So I decided to give you a look at just how this studio runs!

I created the Tools page to show you the business tools, courses, and books that make this business run. And of course, I also linked to some of my fav Squarespace resources that I know will come in handy for y'all.

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Progress on augusts Goals:

My goals from last month were:

  • Launch 1 more service, Squarespace website tweaks, and then revamp my β€˜Work With Me’ page to lead y’all to the different services, at different price points that I offer
    • Accomplished this! And if I do say so myself, the new page design looks so unique, I quite like it! I also added in 'coming soon' services. This is another method of verifying my new offering ideas before I actually put the work into building and launching them. Y'all can sign up to 'get notified' of the new offerings, and basically the ones that get the most sign ups will determine which I make first (so go vote/sign up to be notified of course!). Alternatively, if one offering option does terribly, I'll trash that idea, and put up a new option to start collecting interest.
  • Write an auto-responder, Welcome series for my email list
    • Almostttt done this! I did my research, made my Welcome series game plan, wrote out an outline for each email along with a CTA of each, and have written 3/5 of the emails.
  • Add TryInteract quizzes to my website, to help build my email list
    • Picked a quiz idea, made my quiz (I have to say, Interact makes this soooo easy!), and swapped out my footer CTA to be the quiz as opposed to my 'Start Your Squarespace Website Workbook' and my homepage. I'll be tracking stats to see how this does, and am considering making a couple more quizzes too.
  • Reach out to other business owners in complimentary fields (copywriting, business coaching, brand design, etc.) to build up partnerships and increase my number of new clients gained through referrals.
    • Did this, and am so glad I did. It's always such a pleasure to get to chat with the gals doing very similar work to me, so the calls I made with potential partners were really so much fun. I still have quite a hefty list of potential partners I want to get in touch with, so I'll be at this one again next month.

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Septembers goals:

  • (Same as last month) Reach out to other business owners in complimentary fields (copywriting, business coaching, brand design, etc.) to build up partnerships and increase my number of new clients gained through referrals.
  • Finish my auto-responder Welcome series
  • Guest blog. Why? I'm looking to build site traffic via search, therefore, I need to up my SEO game, therefore, I need to increase links back to my site, therefore, I need to get guest blogging!

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Books I'm reading:

Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris
Almosttt finished this one. It was fab, and therefore earned it's place in my list of recommended reads.

Biggest knowledge bomb? Tim mentions how the 'Dickens Process/Pattern' from Tony Robbins' Unleash The Power Within event had a massive impact on him. As I was reading, it hit me like a ton of bricks too and made me start giving a lot of thought to the things I'm not really pleased with in my life, but I just get along with anyways because they're not causing any immediate suffering.

Wanna know what all the rage is about with the whole Dickens thing? In this YouTube video Tony walks you through it.

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New on the blog in August:

How I create custom, branded icons in under 1 min

July 2017 recap: Doubling prices, sharing yourself in your business & digital nomading

Squarespace hack: advanced 2 speed parallax scrolling

My favorite set-it-and-forget-it survey collection method

An inside look at collecting sales-winning testimonials

Boost your Squarespace SEO with one simple step that you probably haven’t heard of!

Sequel Professional Development Website Design

My 7 Must-Have Tools I Pay For Monthly To Run My Online Business

You spoke, I listened. Audience Survey 2017 results

English With Rebecca Website Design

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Press:

This month I was a breakout session speaker at the Creative Brand Summit hosted by Copper Kettle Co, and I talked to you allll about one of my personal fav topics, '4 easy tweaks to turn site visitors into paying clients!' It was a be-there thing though, so unfortunately I don't have a replay for you.

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*I like making money. (Who doesn't?) You bet your bottom dollar there's affiliate links sprinkled throughout this post! If you make a purchase through some of the links in this site, I make a commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks gal!