Monthly Income, Growth & Traffic Report – October 2016

This is the 49th income report as part of the zero backlink experiment.

Every month I will publish a post like this one that shows you how this blog is progressing and everything I have done across the month to get it there.

These reports will help me track my own progress while teaching you what to do and more importantly what not to do.

What I Have Done In October

Last month I invested a lot of time in speeding up the site to improve the overall user experience.

With a few minor tweaks I have continued to improve on site speeds cutting them by 80% on average.

I have had a few hiccups along the way and taken the site down by accident a couple of times, but all in all – it should make for a much better experience for you all.

On top of that I completed my first 10km trail run up a very muddy rock filled wet Volcano in preparation for Ironman but ended up injuring myself so had to take 2 weeks off training.

Turns out running up a muddy rocky trail up a volcano is much harder than doing it barefoot on the tranquil beaches of Costa Rica.

But putting the fact I couldn’t walk anymore aside, lets look at what I did on the blog this month.

How I Made $134,171 In 6 Days

That is not a typo.

Over the past few days I have bee preparing a post that takes you behind the scenes of one of my recent campaigns that made $134,171 in just 6 days.

In fact, in one day alone the campaign made $45,025!

I am going to be publishing that post tomorrow so make sure you keep an eye out for it – you definitely don’t want to miss it!

80% Increase In Site Speed

Last month I shared all of the things that I had done to increase loading times across the blog.

This month I have continued to build on that which has had some amazing results.

Before I did any optimization my Long Tail Pro review took 8.09 seconds to load-


That is a pretty long time for anyone to wait in this day and age!

After last months tweaks that was reduced to just 2.72 seconds-


That was a great improvement but I felt like I could do better.

So this month I added KeyCDN into the mix and replaced the FV Gravatar Cahce plugin with the much more efficient Nix Gravatar Cache.

That means that all the gravatars now get loaded from a content delivery network rather than making a bunch of extra HTTP requests which is a serious problem when some posts have over 1,000 comments.

That helped trim load time by another 35% all the way down to just 1.75 seconds-


At this point I don’t think I can improve on those load times, so it’s officially case closed on my site speed optimisation project.

Are you guys feeling the difference at all?

You can learn how to increase your websites speed in this post.

Disney Ahoy!

I also had time to fly out to Orlando to catch up with my mum & sister.

We did the usual Disney trail including Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom & Universal Studios.


It was nice to take a few days off, but I was more than happy to leave the United States to dial back the volume of life again!

New Marketing Books

While I was in the states I picked up a couple of new marketing books.

Well actually they are not new to me, they were introduced to me in my coprorate career but I’ve missed theme ver since.

words that sell

These are great books to have lying around on your desk for quick reference when writing any type of copy.

They are structured by descriptors and benefits – for example if you wanted to create the feeling of Romance, you could instantly find all the right words to do that-

romantic words

There are also a bunch of extra copy writing tips, structures and more for quick reference and perfect for anyone that wants to improve their copywriting skills.

Content Creation

I only published 4 new blog posts this month which is on par with the 4 I published last month.

However last month I had an excuse because I launched the huge 15,000 words marketing tools section on the blog.

This month I was just plain lazy, no excuses :)

We kicked off the month with my video tutorial to find powerful expired domains easily.

That was shortly followed by my ultimate list of tutorials to increase website traffic which is broken down by difficulty.

I also published my income report along with the regular income report roundup feature.

Crunching The Numbers

So let’s get our hands dirty and see what all of those changes to the blog has done to the important metrics.

Visitor Statistics

Last month traffic increased to 62,587 (2,086/day) which has remained steady at 62,481 (2,015/day) this month.

At the moment I’m trying to maintain at least 60,000 visitors per months after breaking through the barrier last month, so far – so good!


Most Popular Content

My expired domains tutorial stole the show this month but only by a slight margin.

The how to create a profitable membership site tutorial was close behind with my website traffic tutorials bringing up the rear.


Top Traffic Sources

The top traffic sources have remained pretty much the same as last month.

However there is one key difference, and that is that Bing is starting to send more and more traffic which I suspect is because of my recent SEO optimisations across the blog.


Search Engine Traffic

Search traffic has grown steadily the past few months and that has continued this month!

Last month saw 51,122 (1,704/day) from Google which has jumped to 54,204 (1,749/day) this month.


YouTube Views

I lost all of my historical YouTube views because of changes I made to the branding – so I keep track of them separately.

YouTube views jumped from 17,954 to 20,279 this month because I published a new video which I haven’t done for a while..

That also had an impact on total minutes watched which increased from 80,283 to 92,759 respectively.

That means at least 2 people are watching one of my videos every single minute of every single day!


Social Shares

This month the total social shares across Facebook and Google+ increased from 63,528 to 67,809.

  • Google+ – 24,830 (22,739 last month)
  • Facebook – 42,979 (40,789 last month)


The most important metric on the entire blog – earning a subscription from someone is the ultimate form of commitment and conversion.

This month brought 1,915 new subscribers which is a welcomed increase from last months 1,755 new subscribers.

There are now a total of 150,761 subscribers across all of the various channels!

  • E-mail – 1,198 (2,853 last month) / Total: 83,431
  • Twitter – 257 (312 last month) / Total: 14,166
  • YouTube – 230 (182 last month) / Total: 12,735
  • Facebook – 179 (170 last month) / Total: 21,857
  • Google+ – 9 (7 last month) / Total: 17,8934
  • RSS – 42 (197 last month) / Total: 679

Unable to post graphs at the moment – will update asap

Income Report

Here are the numbers you really want to see-

Affiliate Earnings


Consultation Earnings

I separate out my SEO consultant earnings from the affiliate earnings. The blog drives affiliate sales directly and whilst it does generate SEO consultation leads these are separate projects in their own right.

This month I didn’t taken on any consultation work so made a grand total of nothing!

Other Income

I’m working on another project right now that is part of the blog but not something I’m ready to talk about publicly yet or maybe ever.

I will declare the income here though as it wouldn’t be possible without the blog and ‘technically’ it is affiliate income.

Last month this came in at $8,511.57 however after a few funnel tweaks this month it increased to $10,391.53.

Earnings Total

  • Affiliate Income – $11,166.88
  • Consultation Income – $00.00
  • Other Income – $10,391.53
  • Expenses – $631.23

Grand Total: $20,927.18 / £17,104.36 ($20,388.83 / £15,860.44 last month)

Unable to post graphs at the moment – will update asap

How to start a successful blog in 7 days

Signing Off

Although in a lot of respects the blog made some good progress this month, I don’t feel like I did enough to push things forward.

I mean income is up, traffic is up and the site loads quicker than ever but I just don’t feel it in my veins!

November is going to be the first month I have had for a while where I haven’t got something major planned so I expect to establish razor sharp focus over the next few weeks.

And let’s not forget, Black Friday is on the horizon which usually makes November a very profitable month.

So while I batten down the hatches, you should get ready for tomorrows post where I share how I made $134,171 in just 6 days.

Thank you to everyone that has helped me reach my goals – I couldn’t do it without you, the reader!