I can’t believe it’s been already a year since I started my fitness blog coachsofiafitness.
I think a blog post about how it all came together is due 🙂 I am also going to have a brand new blog category for life as a blogger to share with you my behind the scenes, and document my journey.
Sometimes, you do want to share those amusing behind the scenes with friends and I sincerely consider my readers my virtual friends 🙂
Throughout this post, I will be mentioning names, websites, and companies. These guys have either helped me with a course or service or have supported me throughout this journey. I have to say that without them, I probably wouldn’t have known what I know now about blogging.
HOW I STARTED MY FITNESS BLOG
After I got certified as a strength coach, I decided to start a blog, aside from seeing few clients on the side. I was super excited. I really had no idea what I was going to blog about. I did have a few random blogs about saving the environment, travel, and photography before but nothing legit.
I got a free blog name on wordpress.com, but I then realized that it was very limiting, and I couldn’t even design my theme. I switched to wordpress.org which is the platform where you build your blog/website.
I got a theme and a domain name “coachsofiafitness”.
PS: if you want to start a blog, buy your domain name ASAP. It took me two days to find a name that was available. Looks like there are few other coach sofias out there
TOOLS AND RESOURCES I USE
- I use siteground for hosting. They are seriously the best in terms of customer service and website speed. I have tried another popular host before and my website was very slow even with little content.
- I use Namecheap for my domain name registration. I learned that it is always best to have your domain name separate from your host. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
- I use an SSL certificate to secure my website pages, as I sell my programs here.
- I use Optimizepress to design my sales page.
- I use Adobe Indesign, Photoshop and Lightroom to create everything from blog post images to PDFs and anything else you see here. It’s been a long learning process but I love anything that challenges me.
Few weeks in, I was in the middle of writing my first e-book, which you can now find on my website, as well as on amazon kindle. I joined a few blogging groups online and met amazing friends who helped me tremendously with technical matters. After all, I knew nothing about design, codes, wordpress, how to write a blog or desigh graphics.
I was fortunate to meet two amazing ladies; Lucia Garcia (the artist behind PaintingDreamscapes.com), and Kristi Amdahl (the spreadsheet alchemist and food blogger behind figs and chevre)
It’s seriously amazing how you can find close friends online and form a sisterhood. Kristi and Lucia, thank you!
After a few weeks of setting things up, I started writing about my experience with piriformis syndrome. You can find the post here. Back then I was experiencing some chronic back pain; piriformis syndrome, and considering how challenging my experience was with it, I decided to share what I did and how I cured myself from it.
Using my beginner design skills, I created a very simple image for the post using canva.com and shared it on Pinterest. Nothing happened for about a week or so, and then one day I started getting so many visitors to my website through Pinterest who clicked on that particular post.
My most popular pins:
Here is a sneak peek into my analytics:
My first month of blogging. I was super excited to get my first 141 visitors.
Today as I type this, I am pulling out my latest page views since then:
I reached 67,155 visitors within a year. As you can see I was growing very rapidly by the end of 2016. This is due to my speed website optimization (which included getting a new – better host), and writing more content. I also started creating consistent graphics for Pinterest.
Notice how the graph above correlates with the Pinterest graph below
Pinterest has played a huge role in my website’s growth. It took me from nothing to a peak of 17k + visitors in January. January is usually when everyone is trying to better themselves and read a lot of blogs, and if you are a blogger you know it’s peak season 🙂
83% of my social traffic is from Pinterest. My goal is to increase my traffic through other social media outlets such as facebook and instagram. I also need to keep optimizing my website to show up on google more and more. I currently have about 11% of traffic from organic sources such as google.
GROWING MY EMAIL LIST
One of the most enjoyable things I do is actually write emails. I have 728 subscribers at this moment and few members in my facebook group (where we talk about fitness, nutrition and chronic pain – you should join)
I can’t describe how happy I feel when I get a message from a subscriber. It’s one thing to see statistics and graphs of people visiting your website, and another thing to actually get an email from a person who learned something from a blog post and wants to reach out.
Without that feedback, it’s hard to know which direction to take or if what you are writing makes any impact. I am super thankful for my small tribe and my decision to start an email list. Having an email connection with a reader also gives me the opportunity to contact them directly to answer their questions privately as opposed to answering them on social media.
I know a lot of bloggers and internet marketers who abuse their email list to sell their products. In fact, they say that your email list is your most valuable thing. I say, if your email list is the most valuable thing, then why abuse it?
I decided to keep my emails as valuable as possible. I briefly mention my programs or products at the end of my emails to let my audience know but I think seeing the list as a tool to make money is a very bad idea if you are in this thing for the long run.
HOW TO GET ON MY EMAIL LIST?
You can subscribe to my list simply by filling out about any form on my website or downloading something for free here.
I know this is not the usual traditional post you expect from me 🙂 but I thought It would be cool to give you a small sneak peak of how my website works. I will keep posts like these coming in the near future as a way to document my progress and share it with you all.
PS: few links on this posts are affiliate links. I use everything I recommend of course.