This month was a little eventful to say the least. Having to go into hospital twice-weekly for treatments has started to take its toll on my work/life balance.
And as a result of that I’ve been left feeling a little overwhelmed. Running a full time business, raising a family and keeping a blog all takes time, but I’ve realised that I have to make better choices when it comes to taking on projects and thinking that I can just ‘do it all’.
After all, I’m not accounting for the days when I have no energy or get delayed at events or even by technology – you can tell this has happened to me can’t you?!
Without going into too much detail (I did that enough on my Insta stories!), a brand contacted me about a link that I’d agreed with them. Forgetting that I’ve got something called VigLinks on my blog, it kept rerouting via an affiliate link – and for the life of me, I couldn’t work out how to get rid of it!
I had a few Insta friends trying to source the answer for me – special thanks to Kris Valaydon, Billy The Fish and Kery! It was Kerry that came up with the link that ignores the rerouting of the affiliate link – see below for the code if you ever need this yourself:
<a rel=”noskim” href=https://www.examplelink.com”>Example Link<a>
I’ve now removed VigLink from my site as one friend mentioned that they only pay out when you reach a certain amount – and that amount is pretty impossible to reach (well, for me anyway), so there’s no point in having them on there. I’m glad that drama is sorted but I do wish I was more up on technology and blogging issues that I am.
I didn’t do much in terms of collaborations this month. Because my chemo treatment is now twice weekly I don’t seem to have a lot of time to undertake big projects (only if they’ve got a long lead time!), so instead I stuck to the review and gifting offers which I can post easily on social media and posts such as my Favourites.
One thing that I’ve noticed though is that individuals and brands keep requesting links from my site as a way of boosting their own SEO and DA scoring. To be completely honest, I don’t tend to do this unless it’s worth my while.
Companies have paid for links – but only if it fits in with my blog subjects and is something that I like or believe in myself. And I’ve also done free links when the information is too good to ignore.
But it doesn’t harm in asking for reciprocal links if you’re trying to build up your SEO or DA (domain authority) score – especially if the individual or brand that is asking has a similar or higher score than you do.
This nicely brings me on to blog learning and a friend of mine recently sought some advice in how she could boost her SEO and DA score.
I’ve managed to grow my site to a DA score of 39 (I’m hoping to enter the 40s in 2020!), and there were a number of ways I’ve managed to grow it over the years.
Here’s just some of the advice that I gave to her that you can also use to help you boost your site:
- Make sure you have internal links. When you publish a post try to link to at least two other posts on your site. This isn’t always easy to write into the post, so what I do is add …”You might also like..” to the bottom of most of my blog posts – have a look at this post as an example.
- As I mentioned before, building up having links from other (quality) websites with a higher DA score than yours helps boost your DA score over time. This is when it pays to ask for reciprocal links. I even think there might be some Facebook groups with bloggers asking for swap links.
- Using different phrases throughout your blog posts helps boost the SEO score. So, for example, if your blog post is: “a day out in St Ives” where “day out in St Ives” forms your keyword, think of other ways of phrasing your keyword and use them throughout your blog post (without it seeming forced). So you could say things like…”other things to consider on a day trip to St Ives” and “leisure time in the south country” or “St Ives in 24 hours” etc.
- Use authoritative links. If your blog post is informative or educational it really helps to link to reputable sites (like Wikipedia) as a reference. Google sees that you link to authoritative sites and therefore assumes that you are also authoritative and know what you’re talking about.
Also, bear in mind that it will take time to build up your DA score – it doesn’t happen overnight and it does have a tendency to fluctuate. I’ve been at 39 for as long as I can remember – and it’s not shifting. Let’s hope that changes next year and I enter the ‘naughty forties’ online!
Who I met
I was supposed to hook up with a couple of blogging friends this month but it got pushed by the wayside due to other things going on in our lives. I did manage to catch up with my good friend Pam though – who came to me to chemo one week.
It’s nice to see friends again – and while I’m sat at chemo for three hours – we got to have a good old catch up. We’re always laughing though (which is great for the mind), and one of the chemo nurses came and pointed out how much we were laughing. Some people go in there to rest though – something I’m thinking of doing for one of my sessions – but I’ll be donning my headphones in case there’s anyone like me and Pam in there!
I also managed to see my friend Alex from Living Pretty Happy; she was also booked to attend the BorderlessLive event in London (see below!)
Other income streams in October:
- JustPark £105.84 (I rent my driveway for parking and also use JustPark for when I’m visiting hospitals, town centres, stadiums, airports etc) here’s £5 to get you started!
- Top Cashback: £18.65 – this is how I earn FREE cash for shopping online! Check it out for yourself.
- My magazine: I run a monthly community magazine for my local area and between us, my business partner and I split the profits. Despite a lack of sales time the previous month (which has a knock-on effect for the following month), we didn’t do too badly with sales, managing to bring home £600 each – an improvement on the month before. Let’s hope October and November see more improvement!
Total September income: £724.49
Out and about
This month I went to BorderlessLive. It was the debut event by the company Traverse, but it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. I had thought it would be bigger with lots more things going on.
Initially I had booked in to attend for two days, but I’d pretty much gleaned all I needed to in the few hours I was there on the first day, so a second day for me wasn’t needed.
Whilst I was there I attended a session on standing out from the crowd when it comes to blog campaigns and working with brands. So rather than keep all the juicy tips and tricks stashed away on my iPhone I thought I’d share them for you in a post – 9 Blog Campaign Lessons From BorderlessLive – you’re welcome 😉
September Blogging Month At A Glance
What was great? Feeling like I’ve kept on top of my Instagram stories.
What wasn’t? Making time for the blog – the magazine seems to take over every time.
Goals for October: Anticipate what I need to do ahead of time and work as I go along rather than everything last minute!