Yesterday I shared the story of how back in 2004 I almost losing my business overnight. That big blip made me realise that I had too many eggs in one basket when it came to both traffic and income.
At that time the basket that all my eggs were in was ‘Google’.
I was reliant upon Google for most of my traffic and most of my income (by monetising purely through Google AdSense).
Over the next week, I want to suggest a number of ways I’ve tried to diversify my business since 2004, to build something that isn’t quite so reliant upon any one thing.
My hope was and is to build a business that could survive any one source of traffic, income stream, type of content or trend disappearing.
Today I want to start with the most obvious area and one that was a big problem for me….
Diversifying Sources of Traffic
Yesterdays story is the perfect example of why this is important. I was reliant upon Google for around 80% of my traffic so when that traffic all but disappeared – so did my income.
If I’m honest with myself I think I had become a little complacent about traffic in 2004.
Two years earlier I had worked hard to grow my readership. Every day I networked with other bloggers, submitted content to other blogs, engaged in forums on my topics, commented on other blogs, learned about SEO and much more. The result was growth in profile and traffic. All of the above also contributed to a growth in search engine rankings.
So in 2004, when I was getting decent traffic from Google and was making a decent income, rather than pushing to grow my blogs through every avenue available, I’d allowed myself to become reliant upon search traffic and stopped pushing as hard.
That traffic disappearing was a wake up call that I needed. I’m actually grateful for it because it started a sequence of events that led to much faster growth of my blogs.
At the time I decided to do a number of things to grow new traffic streams to my blogs including:
1. Identifying WHO I Wanted to Read my Blogs
Part of this process was paying more attention to thinking about what type of reader I wanted to attract to my blog. This thinking later led me to create