Welcome officially to Financially Alert 2.0!
Today marks my One Year Blogivesary. To celebrate, I upgraded my website’s hosting to a premium service provider (Hostgator >> Themeco hosting). I also cleaned up the site from excess ads, images, and data. So, you should start seeing a faster site from here on in. It’s all about better serving you!
The Journey So Far
One year of blogging goes by pretty quickly. But, I can remember clearly just starting out and not knowing where this was going at all. All I knew is that I wanted to get out of my shell, share my story, and help others.
The first few months I was pretty much just writing for myself and a couple of friends who were kind enough to drop by every now and then. Even my wife didn’t read my blog… haha.
But, slowly over time I began into interact with other bloggers in the personal finance (PF) community and that was the key!
In fact, I was happily surprised to see how friendly and engaging most of other PF bloggers were.
Things also started to take a turn for the better once I joined the Yakezie Challenge. Although I didn’t catch the challenge at its peak participation a few years ago, there were still several other bloggers actively engage in it and it certainly made me a better blogger. Sam, the creator of the challenge, and mastermind behind FinancialSamurai.com was supportive of our efforts.
I didn’t end up getting to 200,000 on Alexa, but I did manage to get to 419,188 (Global) and 104,235 (US). Nowadays, I do my best to encourage the new class of bloggers to keep up their efforts and find their own success in this PF space. If you’re thinking about starting your own blog, jump right in and start collaborating with other bloggers in your space.
My Flawed Thinking & Realization
Engaging with the PF community was a huge blessing along the way, but you may be surprised that I didn’t always think that way. In fact, when I first started out, I did my best NOT to read other blogs in this space. Why? Well, I figured I didn’t want to become influenced by others and I wanted to create my own unique voice completely independent from what was already out there.
My assumption here was wrong. Of the hundreds (if not thousands) of PF blogs out there, EVERYONE’s take on personal finance is different. Each of us has a unique voice because we’re all at different stages in our lives and we all interpret our world from our own perspective.
Sharing individual stories are the gifts that make blogging so interesting to read and participate in. Blogging here has taught me a lot about myself, and about others that I would have never known. I feel so blessed to live in this time of history where you can speak your mind so freely and have it available to share across the ENTIRE world.
The exciting thing is that I’ve only scratched the surface of this PF community. There are plenty of new friends to make in the coming year and multiple ideas to collaborate on. In fact, I’ll be attending my first FINCON this Fall right in my backyard in sunny San Diego! I can’t wait. If you’re going, please drop me a line. I’d love to meet up and collaborate.
Finding My Voice
By writing this past year, it’s really given me time to find my voice. For me, this means writing about finances in conjunction with personal development. I believe they ultimately go hand-in-hand. This will continue to evolve over time, but I’m happy where things are headed.
Full transparency is the name of the game. In the beginning, I was writing to what I thought people wanted to read. But, I finally realize that I simply need to write as who I am… flaws and all! It’s in this zone, where most people resonate anyways.
No one wants to hear about how perfect my life of financial freedom is… haha. You’d rather hear about my challenges as a stay-at-home father trying to kindle a fledgling coaching startup business into life, along with all the trials and tribulations associated with that. You’d rather hear about my bumbling mistakes I made as a foolish investor. Or, perhaps read about my comical balancing act as a husband, father, and friend.
And of course, you’re probably interested to hear about my plan to reach $10M by the time I’m 50 years old (only 11 more years away!).
Okay okay!! Rest assured, I’m going to get much more personal here in Year #2.
Where I’m Headed With the Blog
In addition to getting much more personal, I’m also committing to dive deeper into my experiences around new investments I’m participating in, such as crowdfunded real estate investing, P2P lending, and crowd funded VC, etc.
In fact, I’m already working on a post for a reader request to share my experience investing with RealtyShares <<— FYI, my latest affiliate partner.
Finally, I’ll be seeking out different ways to “stash cash” securely without stuffing it under my mattress, or collecting a measly .03% in my savings accounts.
Traffic & Monetization
Like many other new bloggers, I was enamored with the idea of building the next great PF blog and generating a steady stream of passive income. Well, I’m here to tell you, it exists, but NOT here… not YET at least. 😉
More importantly, I am happy to report an increase in traffic, and I hope to convert some of this newly found traffic into increased revenues this coming year.
Here’s a quick snapshot of my traffic (weekly) since Day #1 and it’s progression over the last year.
Overall I’m happy with visitor interaction I’m seeing on the site. 47,328 page views from 15,274 users tell me that my content is interesting enough to poke around a little. 🙂
It’s also interesting to see that I’ve had visitors from 127 countries around the world! That’s a bit mind-boggling (in a good way).
So, how much money did Financially Alert actually make the past 12 months?
$ 357.00 – Affiliate links (Personal Capital, etc.)
$ 75.71 – Amazon Referrals
$ 58.70 – Google Adsense
$ 491.41 – Grand Total
This is NOT a lot of money by any stretch of the imagination. BUT what’s important is that it’s a start! Remember, slow and steady can win a race. $491.41 is a proof of concept that I can actually generate some revenue from this site. So, I’ll definitely be spending some time in year #2 trying to ramp up revenues and share these results with you along the way.
Nevertheless, I promise to maintain my integrity when sharing affiliate links, products, or services. These should all be geared towards helping you in some form or fashion. If it does and I’m able to generate some revenue from it, great! WIN/WIN. 🙂
New Streams of Income
Since my passive blog revenues won’t be making any dents into my $10M goal anytime soon, I’m also planning to run some additional side income projects such as:
- Launching an FBA product business
- Creating a Targeted Product (eg. ebook for IT Professionals)
- Targeted Coaching Services
- Etc, TBD
I look forward to sharing with you some of these new activities and seeing what works and doesn’t.
Net Worth Reports
As most of you know, I publish a monthly net worth report that covers changes in our net worth as well as cash flow activities for the month. I was actually thinking about scaling back these NW reports to once per quarter, but I’ve been getting feedback to maintain the monthly series.
Very well then… your wish is my command!
Finally, a quick shout out to the awesome PF community members that have somehow helped, or inspired me in some way. In no particular order…
Retireby40.org: Joe is a veteran in the early retirement community that inspires others to save wisely and exit the rat race early like he did. He’s also a fellow stay-at-home Dad like me who understands both the joys and frustrations of daily life with young ones.
FinancialSamurai.com: Sam is an early retiree with a background in investment banking. His thought-provoking writing draws a large and intelligent community to his site. I suspect more millionaires read this site than any other (that I’m aware of). He’s also a great encourager to other PF bloggers.
GenYFinanceGuy.com: Dom was one of the first PF bloggers I engaged with and I think my first commenter (outside of my friends). Since then, we’ve become good friends and even collaborate offsite in a mastermind group. He’s one of the most driven individuals I know and he doesn’t let any excuse get in the way of his goals. I’d be willing to bet $$ he’ll be in the double comma club soon!
AdamChudy.com: Adam is a likable entrepreneur that is also a part of our mastermind group. He runs a successful FBA business (in addition to a full-time career in finance) and has been killing it the past few months. He’s inspired me to take a look at FBA as an additional stream of income for me this year.
Rockstar Finance & Budgets Are Sexy: J$ is a funny and engaging personality in the PF community. He’s been around “forever” and created a large following at both of his sites. His site Rockstar Finance is a curator of great PF articles and somehow he and his team manage to read through hundreds of articles every week. I’ve been blessed to be featured on there twice now and it’s given me a huge POP of traffic which is like gold for a newer PF blogger. He also inspired me to share my net worth reports!
1500Days.com: I met Mr. 1500 a few months ago when he was visiting San Diego with his family. He’s a great guy that was also fascinating and really down to earth. He loves writing and his blog is widely followed for its great content and fun-loving take. He’s taken control of his finances and hit the millionaire club in 2015 with his investments alone! We also bonded over some experiences in tech.
WeRetiredEarly.com: Steve is a fellow “former tech entrepreneur” that sold his company and sailed off into the sunset! Well, maybe not exactly like that, but pretty close.
ThinkSaveRetire.com: Steve is a great example of someone who lived the “normal” American life… complete with a fast car and the fat debt that comes with it. However, he made a decision to pursue an early retirement and just recently quit his job. Now he’s riding the good life with his wife in their Airstream exploring all the wonders of our beautiful U.S.A.
Honorable Mentions (again in no particular order): FamilyMoneyPlan.com, TheYachtless.com, Untemplater.com, MrTakoEscapes.com, RentalMindset.com, CashflowDiaries.com, ItPaysDividends.com, WalletHacks.com, MoneyGlee.com, DadisCheap.com, InvestmentZen.com, OurNextLife.com, SmellingFreedom.com, AmberTreeLeaves, SmartMoneyMD.com, PatientWealth.com, YETInvesting.com, TheMoneyMine.com, NoNonsenseLandlord.com, TheDrunkMillionaire.com, MoneyMozart.com, RootofGood.com, TheGreenSwan.org, & anyone else I’m forgetting (on accident of course!)
As I always used to tell my employees… Upwards and Onwards! Life is an adventure and full of wonderful surprises should you choose to seek it. Growth and contribution are the paths to fulfillment.
I am so blessed to be able to share with you here at Financially Alert and I want you to know that I appreciate YOU. THANK YOU!
Without YOU, I wouldn’t have the excitement to push myself to write more and better content each week. So, please keep reading, engaging, sharing your own stories, and finding new ways to grow just a little bit each day.
*If you haven’t yet, please join my newsletter. You’ll get exclusive insider access to Financially Alert, including new content updates, my weekly Friday thoughts, and the occasional contest to win cool things or even cash!
Readers, are there any additional areas of interest you’d like me to cover this coming year #2? Any words of wisdom or advice on how to ramp up my revenues this year? 😉