So how do bloggers build up so much traffic and make money with their blog?
Lets take a look at momentum and we can break momentum down into a few different categories:
- Natural Search Results
- Email lists
- Website Referrals
In this post I will focus on natural search results. This is kind of basic but at the same time it seems to be one of the things that people give up on.
So lets says Jay starts a blog, and does nothing except posts twice per day.
First lets focus on the stats. After one week Jay will have 14 blog posts. Google will crawl those posts and decide, based on their algorithms, where that page should rank in the google search results. So lets say Jay gets 1 unique visitor per week from his first 14 posts.
At the end of the next week Jay has 28 posts, and gets 2 unique visitors per week and so on. If we look at nothing else but Jay only posting to his blog then after 2 years John will have 1460 posts, and based on 1 unique visitor per week per 14 posts than he would have 104 unique visitors every day.
So that is a decent amount of traffic for a small personal blog, because after 2 more years it would be 208 page views per day. So lets take a look at the 10 year mark, that would be 520 unique visitors per day. Lets say each visitor looks at 3 pages per visit, than that is 1560 page views per day, or 569,400 page views per year.
So this is the foundation of a blog. No marketing, email lists, referrals etc.
Lets pretend this blog was started 10 years ago and now has 569,000 page views per year. We could simply put an ad on it and reasonably expect to make $3 per 1,000 page views, which means the blog would bring in $1707 per year. So that is not much, but it is just a foundation.
The first beautiful part is that for the next ten years it would bring in $17,070. And that would be without lifting a finger. One more time we look at it over the next 40 years it could bring it $68,280 (without lifting a finger).
How much work did it take to set this up, two posts per day for 10 years. Lets say each post took 30 minutes, that makes 0.5 hour per day, 365 hours per year and 3650 hours over ten years. So in 50 years the blog could bring in about $85,000. That works out to be $23.28 per hour. Not much, but that is just the foundation.
Everything else comes on top of that…
- If the ad rate is $6 per 1,000 page views than it would translate into $46.56 per hour
- The traffic for the blog is likely to grow if people like the content, if people come back to the site directly then the sky is the limit on the amount of traffic
- In all those posts, some could be affiliate links, and those could turn into many thousands in sales
- If people like the blog and sign up to receive updates by email then that will increase traffic
- If the content is great other people will share links to the blog from their own sites, facebook, twitter etc. and the traffic will grow
I believe it is reasonable to anticipate that the traffic growth rate will increase faster than the blog post rate. Eg. Every year their is 730 new blog posts, using the 1 visitor per week, per 14 posts would bring in 52 visitors per week. But the traffic is likely to grow from 1 visitor per 14 posts to 2 visitors per 14 posts and later 3 visitors per 14 posts. That would take the traffic from natural search results and more than triple it over time. And at triple the growth rate vs post rate that would then mean the blogger was making $69.84 per hour for posting over the ten years…much of which would be paid in the next 40 years.
No doubt this is a long term outlook, but it is the easiest one to look at first and puts into perspective that it will take some time to build an audience with blogging.