The $100,000 Challenge: December Update
We just wrapped up our ninth month of the NutritionSecrets.com $100,000 challenge. December was a decent month, considering that the holidays slowed down our sales and traffic.
In the month of December, traffic grew to 69,813 visitors. That’s not too shabby, taking into account that a large part of December was slow due to the holiday. The overall traffic grew by 19.8% over the previous month.
As for revenue, sales in December hit $22,702 dollars. The real number, however, is actually lower than that, which I will go into in a bit. But first, let’s discuss the traffic and what’s coming up.
In December, the blog had 69,813 visitors, and 60,155 of those visitors were unique. Although the blog is receiving a decent number of visitors, the returning visitor count is low.
As you can see from the image above, only 16.2% of the visitors are returning. There are a few reasons for this…
The first reason is poor collection of emails. Typically, you will generate more returning visitors by sending out an email blast every time you write a new blog post. And to collect those emails, you have to leverage pop-ups and opt-ins.
The pop-up on the blog is an exit pop-up, but it doesn’t get triggered on mobile devices, which make up 66.8% of the total traffic.
In addition to that, the blog isn’t optimized for email collection. The offer isn’t very strong, so in the next week or so, it will be updated.
The homepage won’t be the blog; instead, it will be an email collection offer. In addition to that, the posts will have an email opt-in offer at the top. It will be something similar to what I use on NeilPatel.com:
As for January, traffic should be much better as we make these design changes. Plus, January is a hot time for health and nutrition. I’m already estimating that the blog will generate over 100,000 visitors for that month as the stats show that the blog is generating in excess of 4,000 visitors a day.
If you look at the content production, it’s slowed down. Mike went from posting 7 times a week to 3 times a week. He has been working on increasing the production back up to 7 posts a week, which you’ll see at some point in January.
If you look at the previous months, traffic grew faster, but we were also producing more content. It just goes to show that the higher quality content you create, the more search traffic you will receive.
As we generate more income, you’ll also see new types of content on the blog, e.g., infographics. They do really well in most spaces, but it costs money to create them.
December was a decent month for fish oil sales. On Amazon, we generated $22,702 in sales.
Now, although that figure looks great, a lot of those sales came from coupons (we slowed down providing them now). Nonetheless, $11,516.16 came from sales that didn’t use the coupon code.
The overall number of sales should start going up in the upcoming months as we promote the product more aggressively to our email list as well as on the site.
In addition to that, you’ll see direct sales taking place on the site as we are adding e-commerce functionality and will start running paid ads. This should help boost the revenue. My overall goal for January is to hit at least $46,064 in sales…which is 4 times the amount of the previous month.
One of the things that should help with the sales is the bottle design. Now that we are generating income, I was able to use $500 of it for new designs.
Once the copy for the Amazon page is fine-tuned, it should also help boost the sales numbers.
Here is a list of our expenses:
- Fish oil – $6,924.59 (including Amazon fees and shipping to Amazon for prime)
- Aweber – $69
- Designer – $500 (better bottle design)
- Hosting – $249 (just switched to a bigger server to handle January’s growth)
- Mike – free (Mike doesn’t get paid, but he owns a percentage of the blog for putting in time as I discussed earlier. I did this because you didn’t want me to use my name for the challenge, so I found someone else to be the face of the blog.)
- Accounting – $185 (to help out with the books—we are now paying a bookkeeper)
Total expenses for the month were 7,927.59. Which means the total profit was $3,588.57.
The big focus over the next 30 days is going to be fine-tuning the site to be more like Quick Sprout and NeilPatel.com when it comes to optimizing for conversions and email collection.
It will take some time to run A/B tests, but I’m fairly confident that the numbers for January (on all fronts) will be improved because January is the most lucrative month of the year in the health and fitness space.
I know I could be doing more with NutritionSecrets.com and I am not following most of my own advice that I use on my personal blogs, but you have to keep in mind that I focus all my energy on my software companies as that’s what generates my income.
Mike is a newbie to the marketing world, so it takes some time to get him up to speed…especially with my hectic schedule. But overall, the progress isn’t too bad.
What do you think of the progress so far?
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