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Gearing Up for a Strong Finish in Yakezie Challenge

Needless to say, ten days in Honduras where I was able to access the internet twice did not help my blogging statistics all that much, but the experience was well worth it as it was last year at this time.  I am also pleased to report that we didn’t get robbed at gunpoint this year, either which was a big plus.

So what is it that I hope to accomplish in the last two months of the year which are the last two months of the Yakezie Challenge for me?  I plan on maintaining a 3 day per week posting schedule.  Ideally, each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday will see a new post published right here on Cash Flow Mantra.  I also plan on being able to get back to contributing to the Yakezie community and interacting again since I have no major travel plans between now and the end of the year.  Finally, I plan on keeping that Alexa Rank below 200,000.  It seems to be slipping a bit, but I really feel that it is due to those 10 days away.

Statistics for October

Below are my results for the month of October which are preceded by my goals for the month:

Alexa Ranking:  150,000/175,878 (going backward which is no fun)

Alexa in US:  25,000/57,515

Alexa in Canada:  25,000/46,054

Visits:  2000/1208

Search Visitors:  500/444 (close)

Subscribers:  45/31 (according to Feedburner)

Earnings: $100/met

All-in-all, I can’t complain about the month considering the length of time I was away.  I only missed one post while gone as well but couldn’t really respond to comments or interact the way that I would have liked.  Obviously, that will be better this month.  As a result, I really don’t plan on changing any of my goals for the month of November.  I may not make all of them, but I sure plan on seeing what I can accomplish given the time and access.

Top Referral Sites

  1. Lifeandmyfinances.com
  2. Nojobformom.com
  3. ThewealthyCanadian.com
  4. 20sfinances.com
  5. Myuniversitymoney.com

I would like to thank these bloggers for sending traffic my way.  I really appreciate it.

I have thought about having a contest to encourage either referrals or subscribers, but I really wanted to be able to accomplish my traffic goals without the incentives and complete the Yakezie Challenge by my own content and efforts.  I have also been thinking about outsourcing carnival submissions to see if that helps with traffic.

Readers and Fellow Bloggers:  I need your help.  Any opinions on outsourcing carnival submissions?  Do carnivals help traffic?  I have been considering this for a few days and actually might be leaning toward paying the cost for November and December to help achieve some of these blogging stats.  Please comment below.

Other November Goals

Since I didn’t really change my blogging goals for the month of November, I would also like to make a few other goals for the month.  Mainly these goals will relate to my repayment of debt.  You may have read how I plan on using my blogging income to pay off a business credit card.  I was able to make a supplemental payment during the month of October and plan on paying some more during the month of November to set myself up for having the debt retired by the end of the year.

A stretch goal would be to make a sizable payment toward my Discover Card debt.  I would think paying off 25% would be a stretch considering all of the other expenses that I have.  I think it could be possible, but I do have a property tax bill due this month plus car registration which is actually an excise tax in our state.

Thanks for reading and if you have input on carnivals, I would welcome it.


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18 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Cash Flow Mantra - November 2, 2011 at 5:00 am

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Yakezie Challenge Results for September 2011

I am now officially half way through the Yakezie Challenge and have 3 months to go.  Despite having met my initial goal of reaching an Alexa Ranking of less than 200,000, there is no resting on my laurels.  It would be incredibly easy to fall back above 200K so I need to keep posting good content and focus.  The low hanging fruit has been picked already, and it will be more difficult to move up in the rankings as I came to find out in September.

It turns out that September is the first month that I didn’t meet all my goals.  I continued to make progress, but like I mentioned, the steep part of the curve has been ascended.  Now the changes will be more and more gradual.  I suppose that is what happens when you decide to stretch yourself.  I will continue to stretch and grow although I need to remind myself not to become disappointed if it doesn’t happen.  I just need to work harder.

Looking at September Results (Actually through Sept 29th since I am out of town for 5 days)

Alexa Ranking:  September goal–150,000  Actual result–169,184

Alexa in US:  September goal–25,000  Actual result–37,675

Alexa in Canada:  September goal–30,000  Actual result–30,895  (close)

Visits according to Analytics:  September goal–1200  Actual result–1713  (Yay)

Search visitors:  September goal–200  Actual result–315 (awesome)

Subscribers:  September goal–40  Actual result–29

Earnings:  September goal– $25  Actual result–met

October Goals

Alexa Ranking:  150,000

Alexa in US:  25,000

Alexa in Canada:  25,000

Visits:  2000

Search visitors:  500

Subscribers:  45

Earnings:  $100

I decided to stretch myself to some extent again.  I left the Alexa Ranking the same since I only made limited progress during the month of September and it seemed pointless to stretch that goal.  I did, however, feel that I could make some progress in other areas and so even though I didn’t make my subscriber goal of 40, I did bump it up a bit.  I feel like 2000 visits will be a stretch as well since about 310 of my visits for September was due to a link that was placed on The Dividend Guy blog.  He obviously has quite a few readers and many of them took the time to read my article on my investing plan for the next decade.  Thank you Dividend Guy!

At my usual pace of visits, I might only expect to have 1500 or so for the month of October.  I can usually count on about 50 per day on average.  My search traffic is growing and will continue to do so with additional content so I could see some growth there.  I will also need to pick up some more regular readers.

Thank You, Readers

I am incredibly thankful for all of you who read CFM on a regular basis and especially to those of you who comment frequently.  I think I have a very intelligent audience and am glad that many of you are eager to learn.  I also derive knowledge and inspiration from your comments and blogs as well.  You know that I read them regularly and enjoy the discussions that we have.

Finally, I want to mention those top 5 referring sites for the month:

thedividendguyblog.com (no contest thanks to that one link)  Time to Panic!

beatingtheindex.com (always in the top 5–Thanks so much)  Making Money on Oil

thefinancialblogger.com (a great looking site)  How are spending your time?

retireby40.org (another consistent top referrer)  I love this stock power gauge

youngandthrifty.ca (Yay for Canada!)  House Hunting Experience

Many of you will be reading this from the Financial Blogging Conference in Chicago.  I hope you all have a good time.  I look forward to reading about all the reports and trying to catch a little bit of the excitement and motivation that such a conference will bring.  Unfortunately, I had a previously schedule break to go on a short cruise with several friends to celebrate a 50th birthday (not mine, I have a few more years) so as you read this, I will be in the middle of the Caribbean avoiding hurricanes.  I will be back in a few day, though and start working on that all important content.

14 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Cash Flow Mantra - October 1, 2011 at 6:25 am

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Yakezie Challenge Results for August 2011

Well, I am now two full months into the Yakezie Challenge and must say that I am enjoying myself immensely.  I want to thank everyone who is reading and supporting this blog through their comments and links.  I hope someday to get to meet some of you in person after having communicated online.  I also hope to continue to get to know more about you as the months go by.

For those of you who might not know, the Challenge is designed to inspire you to focus on your blog by writing and posting in a regular fashion and interact in such a way so that the Alexa Rank of your blog decreases to under 200,000 within 6 months or is cut in half if you started below 200,000.  I think it is a brilliant idea and am so thankful that I am participating.

Looking at August Results

Alexa Ranking:  August goal–350,000  Actual result–208,181

Alexa in US:  August goal–40,000  Actual result–28,561

Visits according to Analytics:  August goal–750  Actual result–1019

Search visitors:  August goal–75  Actual result–122

Subscribers:  August goal–5  Actual result–22

Earnings:  August goal– $5  Actual result–met

As you can see, all of my goals were met and many were met by a large margin.  So it looks like I need to stretch myself a little in September and I will try to do just that.

September Goals

Alexa Ranking:  150,000

Alexa in US:  25,000

Alexa in Canada:  30,000

Visits:  1200

Search visitors:  200

Subscribers:  40

Earnings:  $25

Top Referring Blogs

I would like to acknowledge those top 5 blogs which provided me with the most traffic for the month of August.  I truly appreciate the referrals and links to my various articles.

1.  Beating the Index

2.  Christian Personal Finance

3.  Investorzblog

4.  Free Money Finance

5.  World of Finance

A Little Help for My Friends

It looks like I will be making the Challenge goal of getting my Alexa Rank below 200,000 by the end of this year (I started the Challenge on July 1).  So I would like to take this moment to look at everyone in summer team number 3 and make sure that everyone is at least on the way below 200,000.  I don’t know when everyone started the Challenge.  Plus, some may have started below 200,000, and I wouldn’t necessarily know that.  But if everyone can at least get below 200,000, I think that would be awesome!

Nickel by Nickel:  Alexa Rank 223,347

The Penny Hoarder:  Alexa Rank 201,607

The Debt Myth:  Alexa Rank 532,392

The $60K Project:  Alexa Rank 247,435

Again, I would like to thank everyone for reading, commenting, and supporting me as I work to complete this portion of the Challenge in September.  I would also like to thank Sam for developing such a supportive network of bloggers.  He is truly one of a kind.  Thanks, Sam.

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27 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Cash Flow Mantra - September 1, 2011 at 7:39 am

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