Part #4 How to start a successful (or failing) Blog in 2013!

Part #3 is here – and other others are linked from there!

Ok, so enough time has gone by now that a basic judgement can be made as to whether the new blog/forum is (or could be!) a successful venture. As you may remember, I purchased an abandoned blog appox 4 months ago, in late January, 2013.

I have spent some money and quite a bit of time adding content and doing various forms of promotion – in fact, the official Grand Opening is NOW, during which we are giving away various prizes along with copies of a free quadcopter ebook which I am working on.

I’m pleased to note that our traffic (visitors to the site) is WAY up – in addition, the site is actually making some money, although this is not the current intention. It was curiosity, they say, which killed the cat and I couldn’t help but throw some ads and other tests onto the site to see if it would be possible to someday “monetize” it.

Visitors for Droneflyers.com by week in 2013 - Click to Enlarge

Visitors for Droneflyers.com by week in 2013 – Click to Enlarge

Some comments on the chart:
The basics show an increase in page views from less than 1,000 per week to over 7,000. The actual statistics are even better, since I have added a forum to the site which does not have it’s statistics measured in this chart.

Your mileage may vary, but in a very general sense, crossing over the 1,000 page views per day seems to where a site can be economically feasible. Of course, monetary income is only one possible reason (and often one of the lesser) for having a blog or a web site, but it’s nice to get some of the costs covered and make a bit of side income. In my case – since I am investing a couple grand in this venture – it will be satisfying to see a bit of payback eventually come in.

Income vs. Expenses

Based on the current traffic, a site such as this could easily make $2-300 per month in income…and possibly more if the owner spent some time acquiring sponsors and tuning the site. Such a site would pay off the initial monetary investment within the first year or so, and then could provide a positive cash flow. The ongoing costs once all my giveaways, etc. are done with will be less than $40 per month. This includes a decent web host (server) and the costs associated with the forum software, add-ons an upgrades.

Of course, good blogs and web sites require a substantial investment in time and talent also. If I billed myself by the hour, I’d have been broke long ago!

Where the Money comes from?

Most of my previous experience has been with two common forms of selling ads:
1. Private sponsors – this means signing up vendors who might want to put their products or message in front of your sites’ readers.
2. Google Adsense – this involves putting a small piece of code on your site and becoming a partner with google in serving ads (from googles clients).

A third option which I have tried before with poor results involves referring blog visitors to Amazon.com for purchases, and receiving a small fee from Amazon for doing so. In contrast to my former experience, the Amazon links I have on the droneflyers blog are doing quite well.

Yet another option would be to open some kind of a web store and sell related products yourself – something which would probably bring in the largest revenue of any of these options. However, running a physical business requires more time and has additional responsibilities tied to it.

In the case of my new hobby site, it’s my guess that referrals to Amazon along with some adsense will be the best way to create income with little hassle. However, independent (directly contacted and sold) sponsors may be willing to pay higher rates…just that I am not that ambitious at the moment!

I’m going to consider this the final installment to this series – as the site and blog are officially underway. Thanks for reading and I hope you were able to pick up some tidbits of information to make your new blog successful.

Craig

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