Happy New Year! Can you believe it is 2023 already? I have some big plans for this upcoming year. But before, I launch into another year of dog-friendly adventures, I want to spend a little bit of time taking a look at what went well and not so well in 2022. So here is Pawsitively Intrepid’s 2022 Year in Review.
For those of you who are new here, I have been blogging since May 2017. After I graduated from veterinary school, I spent a lot of time out on hiking trails and was also looking for a hobby that I could enjoy from my couch after hiking. I was also needing a hobby that was relatively inexpensive (or even better could be profitable). Blogging fit the bill!
If you are interested in how bloggers can make money, I wrote a post all about “How to Make Money Blogging About Your Dog (or Cat).” That post discusses all of the basic ways to make money blogging, such as through ads or affiliate marketing.
But if you are here to learn about this blog’s growth in 2022, keep reading. (Please be aware that this post does contain a couple of affiliate links.)
Pawsitively Intrepid: Blog Statistics
As of January 1st, 2023, there are a total of 199 posts currently published on PawsitivelyIntrepid.com. Only 27 of those blog posts were published in 2022.
My writing has slowed down a little bit in the last 2 years as I have spent some time exploring YouTube and writing a few articles for a second website, VeterinaryTalk.
Below is a comparison table of how many blog posts I have written in each full year that I have been writing for Pawsitively Intrepid.
When I started this blog, I was attempting to write one blog post a week. You can see that in 2020 and 2019 I nearly accomplished this goal, but I stalled a little in 2021 and 2022. A big goal for 2023 is to finally write at least 52 blog posts in one year.
Number of Users and Page Views per Year
Despite writing only 29 posts in 2021, this blog had grown significantly. In 2022, traffic fell significantly when one of my top-ranking articles stopped appearing on the first page of Google. But despite some decrease in monthly page views throughout the year, total numbers were still comparable to 2021.
|Annual # of Users||1.7K||5.4K||45.7K||123K||126K|
|Annual # of Page Views||3.5K||8.6K||65.5K||171K||144K|
|Annual # of Sessions||2.2K||6.4K||53K||142K||145K|
Over the last five years, this blog has seen a lot of growth. And while I was hopeful this growth would continue through 2022, unfortunately, traffic was mostly stagnant. There are a few potential causes for this.
- This is the second year in a row that I wrote less than 30 blog posts for the year.
- I changed from Google Adsense ads to Ezoic Ads.
- I changed my blog theme to try and get a faster theme. The website is faster, but there are a few flaws with the functionality of the new theme, specifically the search function on mobile.
As I head into 2023, I aim to write more and will re-evaluate the website’s theme. I will likely stay with Ezoic ads, however, as the revenue is significantly better with this ad service.
Last year, I also compared the average users and page views/month for the year, as many revenue factors for blogs are based on page views/month.
For those who are more visual, here is a graph to show the change in page views per month averages from year to year.
When I set goals in January of 2022, my traffic goal was to double my page views per month again. Obviously, as you can see in the graph above, I did not meet my traffic goals for 2022. But I’ll try again for 2023.
Most Popular Posts From 2022
Many of my most popular posts for 2022, were also popular in 2021. Below is the list of my top 5 most popular posts for 2022 (with original posting dates and a comparison to the traffic they were receiving in 2021).
|Title||Publish Date||Views |
|1||How to Pass Other Dogs Calmly: Stop the Stare||11/25/2020||13,567||11,133|
|2||Dog-Friendly Guide to Badlands National Park||11/6/2019||5,757||6,539|
|3||7 Creative Ways to Deal with Your Dog’s Poop While Hiking||5/8/2019||4,169||5,455|
|4||11 Tips for Successfully Tent Camping with Your Dog||4/22/2020||4,169||14,619|
|5||The Best Gear for Hiking with a Reactive Dog||3/4/2020||3,747||4,906|
Interestingly, all of my top 5 posts were written in either 2019 or 2020. I’ll have to try and top at least one of these with a new post written in 2023.
Another interesting blog statistic is the sources from which traffic is coming to a blog/website. The first larger image is my pie chart of traffic acquisition in 2022. The smaller image below is the pie chart from 2021.
As you can see, organic search (such as the traffic that comes from Google or Bing, or DuckDuckGo) was 78% of my traffic this year, followed by direct traffic at almost 17%, and then social media at 4.5%.
My traffic from social media did drop significantly this year, but I have not been very active on social media platforms in 2022. That being said, I do still plan to use social media in the future.
So to try and help determine how helpful various social media platforms are for my blog growth, last year I started comparing the numbers for individual social media platforms. Below you can see how 2022 stacked up.
|7,470 (89%)||15,862 (85%)||4,193 (78%)|
|697 (8.3%)||2,166 (12%)||561 (11%)|
|YouTube||95 (1.1%)||472 (2.6%)||538 (10%)|
|5 (0.06%)||17 (0.1%)||6 (0.1%)|
|87 (1.0%)||4 (0.02%)||4 (0.08%)|
YouTube is the only social media platform that increased the number of sessions created compared to 2021. If you are interested in our YouTube content, you can find us at the handle @pawsitivelyintrepid.
Last year I also started sharing some of my financial information from this blog. This year, I recorded income from both PawsitivelyIntrepid.com and VeterinaryTalk.com together. Veterinary Talk is a smaller and newer blog than Pawsitively Intrepid but did contribute a couple hundred dollars to my totals.
My blogs earn money in two main ways: ads and affiliate earnings. I earn ad revenue from Ezoic on Pawsitively Intrepid, but still have Adsense serving ads on Veterinary Talk.
I am an affiliate for a few companies: Amazon, Zouga Dog Gear, and a company called Avantlink. Avantlink manages affiliate sales for several companies – currently, I work with REI, Ruffwear, and WestPaws.
Let’s take a look at total earnings in 2021 vs 2022. For this table, I am using the amount of income I earned each year, which does differ a little from the amount that I was paid. Some accounts have thresholds that need to be reached before payments are sent out.
As you can see above, despite the lower traffic on Pawsitively Intrepid this year, there was no lost revenue. In this table, you can see my self-calculated RPM for both years. Revenue Per Mille (RPM) is a metric that represents how much money you’ve earned per 1,000 views. I calculated this by dividing my income by the number of page views I listed above for year totals + the page views from Veterinary Talk.
Overall, I am pretty happy with the progress I am making with my RPM. Hopefully, I can continue to grow this closer to $15-20 per 1,000 page views over the next year.
So how did I do on my goals for 2022?
Let’s take a look!
Traffic Goals for 2022
Traffic is an easy measurement and as my blog is still relatively small, it is an obvious goal each year. The goal this year is to double the traffic again. With an average of 20K page views per month, this one might be a little difficult. Wish me luck!
How will I increase traffic? Mostly by writing more. And writing well. If I can provide useful content to readers, more readers should come.
I will also continue to learn and grow my SEO skills. If I can find underserved topics, it will be easier to create blog posts that Google will show on the first page of search results. I plan to go through the Income School course on SEO again to help improve my SEO skills.
Additionally, I have been considering taking a course on how to better utilize Pinterest. The course I may purchase in 2022 is this one from Wear Wag Repeat. Tori Mistick is fantastic and if you aren’t already listening to her podcast, then you should.https://pawsitivelyintrepid.com/pet-blogging-i-doubled-my-blogs-growth-in-2021/
New Year’s goals are a funny thing. As I look back on the goals I set last year, they are pretty similar to what I have set for this year, meaning that I didn’t accomplish them. But that’s life. Some years are more successful than others.
Monetization Goals for 2022
So I just barely made my monetization goals for 2021. But, I really want to push hard in this category for 2022. Increasing the income that I can make from this blog, will open up the opportunity for me to spend more time working on the blog.
So I am going to dream big here and work to break the $1000/month threshold.https://pawsitivelyintrepid.com/pet-blogging-i-doubled-my-blogs-growth-in-2021/
I had a few ways I was going to accomplish this.
- Increased Traffic = Increased Ad Earnings
With 200-300 page views per day (6000 – 9000 page views/month) at the end of the year when my traffic is lowest, I am currently earning $3-5/day or $90-150/month. If I can consistently increase my traffic to 20K + page views per month, I hope to be making closer to $500/month from ads.
As we have discussed, I didn’t make my traffic goals, which means that I also didn’t meet this revenue goal.
- Affiliate Income
Increasing the usefulness of gear reviews and finding more products that I truly love to recommend could help grow my affiliate income. I would like to increase my affiliate income to $100 + per month.
While I didn’t meet this goal either, I did improve my affiliate earnings by almost $100 for the year.
- Create a Digital Information Product
Oftentimes the best way to make an income as a blogger is to create an information product that readers can purchase. My goal is to create something to sell in 2022.
This task is still a future goal.
- +/- YouTube
I would still like to give YouTube a legitimate attempt either in 2022 or 2023. I have a computer that can run video more efficiently now and have Pinnacle Studios video editing software. I am also still a part of Income School’s course. And in addition to the blogging course, Income School also offers a YouTube course.
I am struggling a little to find enough time to work as a veterinarian, write blog posts, and record videos. So I may delay really working on YouTube until 2023 and just focus on writing for the blog and creating an info product this year. But I would like to complete the YouTube course at some point and see what happens.
I didn’t get regular videos up on YouTube this year. However, I did post some new videos, gained 130 subscribers, had 2.0K watch hours (up 16% from 2021), and had 40.4K views (up 7% from 2021). So YouTube is slowly improving and is a big part of my plan for 2023.
- +/- Additional Income Sources
Other options to create more income include finding sponsors for blog posts or setting up a print-on-demand online store. We’ll see just how creative I can get in 2022.
There is still room to get creative in 2023.
Value-Added Goals for 2022
Happily, I did meet my value-added goals. I have added more gear reviews and a whole series on living and adventuring with dogs who exhibit reactive behaviors.
Goals for 2023
This next year is an exciting one for me with a lot of fun adventures planned. I can’t wait to share all of these adventures with my readers here on Pawsitively Intrepid.
I am going to keep my goals simple this year and list them here:
- Update Pawsitively Intrepid’s blog theme so the search function works on mobile
- Post 52 new blog posts.
- Post 26 new YouTube videos (once a week starting June 2023).
- Enjoy the journey
Please let me know if there are any topics that you are interested in learning more about. I am happy to write about topics that interest my readers.
And if you would like to follow along with our journey, sign up to get our monthly email newsletter.