Food Blogging Traffic & Income Report for December 2018. Watch over my shoulder as I show you how to increase traffic and improve your income on your food blog.
Just like that the final month of 2018 is over. Another year of food blogging has come to an end and I can celebrate knowing that I gave my all to my food blog in 2018. I also feel like things have changed a lot since I started RecipeThis.com with Dominic in November of 2015.
Back when we started our food blog, Sofia was just about to celebrate her 1st birthday and yet here she is having just turned 4. During that time we have also welcomed our 3rd child into the world and Jorge is now 2 and I am patiently waiting for the terrible 2s to begin.
But what amazes me most is how much the world of food blogging changes on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis. When I started recipe sharing sites were huge yet now I get much higher traffic from a round up features and the traffic from recipe sharing is at an all time low.
We find that the best traffic sources right now on food blogs, is Pinterest, Google Search and referring traffic.
Food Photography At RecipeThis.com
What worked in 2015 for food bloggers certainly doesn’t work as much now. For example, when I started out, I felt that it was essential to have perfect photos and without perfect photos that I was not going to have a successful food blog. Especially, if you wanted to get featured on recipe sharing sites.
Because I hate food photography, I used stock photos and did so until the end of 2017. Then my husband and I switched and got our first Digital Camera. His photography has greatly improved over the year and our social shares have gone up and so has our traffic.
Our photos are not as good as the stock photo sites, but they are real and that’s what our readers love.
We should have done this from the start instead of being worried about appearance. It’s a similar feeling to wanting to keep up with the Jones’s but we know that it will hurt us a lot more in the long term trying to do so.
If your food photography sucks, then remember people want to see real photos not something that looks like it is from a magazine as we don’t have magazine worthy photos every day at home do we?
Though, on a side note, we have had some of our recipe photo styles copied, so our photos can’t be that bad, can they? Our pictures of food on the fork in the Instant Pot have had a few copies lately. Well the truth is, the only reason we did that photo is that someone said it can’t possibly cook in that time and we wanted to prove to them it could!
I don’t personally take the photos (Dominic does) as I am partially sighted and its impossible for people with my vision to use a DSLR. But I love testing recipes, I love talking about food and I love writing about food.
But watch this space as I am looking into taking photos myself with an Iphone. I have only just got it, so it’s a work in progress.
RecipeThis.com allows us to have a food blog with a real family affair. I research, create and test, Dominic photos, does the technical and a lot of the admin and Kyle our eldest son does the graphic design and the 3 of us share the social media responsibilities.
We hope you have enjoyed our style of food photos over the last year.
How To Start A Food Blog
Would you like to join me and be a full-time food blogger too? Would you like to take photos of your delicious food, talk and breathe food like I do? Then check out our free guide showing you how to start a food blog:
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Last Month Of Quarter 4
As a food blogger, there is this huge excitement about how your income and traffic is going to go at the end of quarter 4. Advertising networks pay more, sponsored content brands have a big budget and best of all the traffic is HUGE.
I always find the best day of the year for my traffic is the 26th December through to the 31st of December. This is because we are a kitchen gadgets blog and people don’t know what to do with all those amazing gadgets they got for Christmas.
I have also left behind the world of sponsored content and it will be interesting how our income comes together from a passive point of view.
Our Food Blogging Income During December 2018:
- Ezoic = $6614.71
- Clickbank Ebook Sales = $1740.57
- Amazon Associates = $1045.24
- Draft2Digital = $111.25
- ButcherBox = $125.00
- Kindle = $108.75
- Google Play = $57.40
- Kettle & Fire Bone Broth = $7.79
Total Revenue = $9810.71
Our Food Blog Expenses During December 2018:
- Ezoic Fees = $253.99
- Facebook Ads = $120.48
- Hosting = $112.12
- Aweber = $29.00
- Screenshot Monitor = $25.00
- Canva = $12.95
- Bluburry = $12.00
- Microsoft Office = $10.59
- RackSpace = $10.53
Total Food Blogging Expenses = $586.66
This leads to a total food blogging income from Recipe This For December 2018 of $9224.05.
Trying NEW Things
I am always trying new things on RecipeThis.com and seeing how they would work out for us. Then giving our opinion so that you can decide whether or not to give them a go yourself or not!
In Quarter 4 we tried:
Skimlinks – You add the code to your site and it replaces your links with affiliate links. I have read income reports from people adding $3000 extra a month to their income and they have 40% of our traffic. With high hopes I added it. And it bombed! We got about 5 clicks in a few days with a lot of impressions and no income. It also affected our sales taking our ebook payment links to somewhere we didn’t want them going.
MiloTree – We tried out the pop up on our blog to see if it will increase our Pinterest followers quicker. We are already averaging 2000 new Pinterest Followers a month and it would be fantastic to increase that number. We kept it on our blog for about 3 weeks and found it only increased our daily numbers by about 3 a day.
Ezoic – We have now had Ezoic on our blog for three full months and are very happy with how it is going. It is a great alternative to MediaVine and its best feature is that it pays you quicker than MediaVine and AdThrive do. For example, our November income from them was paid during the Christmas and New Year break. Yet with an alternative network you wouldn’t see the money until well into the New Year. Though unlike with the networks you get charged for their service, compared to them taking a percentage of the profits. It allows you to see exactly where your money is going.
Recipe This Blog Traffic December 2018
We had an amazing viral day on the 26th of December 2017 thanks to one of our round ups going crazy. As well as this it was also a very good day because it’s the day of the year when people are bored and are looking for new kitchen gadget recipes.
But this year, we still had a bit of viral sharing going on, but it was great to say we beat last years traffic amounts, just from a nice spread of traffic through a variety of blog posts and recipes.
But there is one thing spectacular that we did achieve for the first time ever and that was our first 1 million page views month. In fact we were well over it. We did achieve a million last year but that was from mid December to mid January. But this is ALL in December.
We achieved a million page views by:
Never missing a deadline – We make sure our blog has a strict content calendar and that we stick to it. Even with small children we have blogged in advance and kept the content coming.
Making sure that every new recipe is promoted – It goes on social media channels, out to our mailing list and of course is repromoted at a relevant time.
Getting on round ups – They are key for getting yourself out there and for new readers to find out all about you.
Excellent content – Having unique content and being the first to set a trend has been very important for us. It has got our name and brand off the ground and helped kickstart our traffic. Just remember to be original and not just copy me!
Here are our top 10 traffic sources for RecipeThis.com during December 2018:
We are now in the momentum of our best traffic of the year and its nice to see how its all coming along. Though I am rather surprised by how much our Pinterest traffic has grown. It is now more than double of our SEO traffic, yet 6 months ago they were equal.
I love seeing the climb of our Christmas traffic, but eventually it turns into a downhill movement in the other direction, well until the end of the summer. But it gives you a fantastic buzz when you’re on the high days!
Here we are after Christmas and all refreshed ready to work hard and grow recipethis.com even further.
I admit now, that I never stop and I never slow down. I want my blog to grow more and more each day. I am really pleased with how it has come along in the last 3 years and can’t wait to see what 2019 holds.
This year we plan on having a summer trip to Spain again and have some new monthly recipe themes coming out. As well as this we have some new digital products coming out this year and I am sure all this will keep us busy!