July 2018 Recap
JULY 2018 RECAP
Welly HELLO summer, aren't you a treat? I find it hard to believe that it's time for another monthly recap post already but here we are, it's been a good one. Summer is my absolute favourite time of year and even though it's been hella hot, you won't find me complaining!
This marks the 5th post in my monthly recap blog posts where I share a behind the scenes look at my business and life as an entrepreneur and digital nomad. I love having this space to record the highs and lows and show you how I spend my time away from my laptop.
I really enjoy seeing little glimpses of the personal lives of my fellow business owners, freelancers and entrepreneurs because it makes me feel like I know them as real people, you know? I’m hoping you enjoy reading these posts from me too! I’m a firm believer that business can be professional AND fun and I’m so excited to share what I get up to every month. Plus, the pics are fun to creep :)
July was a wonderfully grounding month and my first full month back home in Canada since my travels in Asia as a digital nomad. I settled back into normal life and did some good work. It felt balanced and chill, which is exactly what I wanted after all the insane travel and changes experienced back in June.
Let’s dive right in and take a look, shall we?
BUSINESS AND WEBSITE NEWS
To be totally honest, there's not a whole lot to report here. I didn't do any major website changes (like I did back in May), just a few updates. First off, I added several new testimonials to various sections of my website to show off real feedback and positive words. I also added a popup to promote my SEO checklist and now that it's been live a few weeks, I can confirm that it's helping me grow my email newsletter list! Between the popup and the pre-footer opt-ins on nearly every page, the SEO checklist is definitely doing it's job and getting more people on my list. This shows me that small yet intentional web design changes can have a major impact, and now that it's connecting me to loads more people I call it a win!
It was business as usual so nothing major to share about July. I took one week off for vacation but otherwise worked my way through my tasks like normal. No highs, no lows. It was chill and I am happy.
While I was abroad for the past 6 months, I had the absolute pleasure to work out of Outpost's two locations in Bali and Cambodia, as well as Hubud in Ubud, Bali. Those spots spoiled me rotten and I truly believe they helped launch my business forward to a whole new level. However, since I've been home, I traded coworking spaces for my "home office", coffee shops and the library. While I miss the fun and awesome communities I had at those coworking spaces, I'm enjoying this summer setup.
You might remember that in June, my website traffic took a nosedive. Thank goodness that improved in July and numbers are back up to where they were before "the great crash". Unique visitors were up 5% mo/mo and page views were up 19.9%.
I switched over to Tailwind and that improved my referral traffic from Pinterest. Pinterest is such a great way to get traffic to your website because it's basically a giant search engine, and I love seeing that number rise in my Analytics tab.
I track all my stats in my Website Growth Tracker and it’s really fun to see my progress every month (<--- shameless plug).
If you're subscribed to my newsletter, you will have seen me ask about whether or not you think I should start a business Instagram account? Almost all of my online biz friends have them and say that I'm majorly behind by not having one, but I am just resisting it in a major way! I'm worried that it'll be a time suck, that it won't actually improve my business/drive traffic to my site/help me get more newsletter subscribers, or that it'll expose me and you'll see how I'm a total weirdo in real life (#truth). On the flip side, I do see the value in connecting with people on different platforms, embracing video so that you can get to know me better, and sharing what's up in my life and business as it happens visually. THOUGHTS? Please share!!!
In other news, another one of my Youtube videos (this one) passed the 1.5K views mark which means I now have 5 videos on my channel that have that many or more views! Obviously I am aware that these numbers are pitiful compared to other channels, but considering that my videos are super niche and aren't highly produced, I'm happy with it! I think of Youtube as another platform where I can connect with people who are interested in something I like to tech and share my knowledge about, and if it sends more people my way, it's a win.
As for Pinterest, making the switch to Tailwind has been a great decision and my numbers are steadily rising as the weeks go on.
I wasn't particularly active on Twitter in July, but I did DM with a few followers which was fun!
I worked on several custom Squarespace websites in July and they all went very well. Like I said above, business as usual :)
I had a few inquiries about my website consulting and strategy, mostly related to SEO and adding monetization streams, but didn't actually have any booked session in July. You might remember that I had held off on this service over the past few months while I was abroad because I wasn’t sure how reliable the internet connection would be for live sessions and I was worried that the time change might be a turn-off, but I realize that I was overthinking things and making excuses. I’m very glad I opened this service back up again because I love working with other website and business owners this way, so if this is something you’re interested in, let’s talk!
I shared a pretty honest blog post about what I learned from launching my second digital product so be sure to check that out if you’re interested in reading about my biggest takeaways!
In July I worked hard on my online course and I can't wait to share that with you when it goes live soon!
My goal every month is to publish at least 2 blog posts/video tutorials a week and send out my weekly newsletter to my email list. It's a lot of content to put out but I'm happy to say that I delivered in July!
I published 8 blog posts (including 2 video tutorials) in July which felt great to see that I met my goal. I stuck to my plans of working ahead and creating content in advance, mostly because I actually followed my editorial calendar. I batch wrote (?) blog posts when I was in the zone and that was great for my productivity. I was also motivated by a looming vacation and I did NOT want to be working on blog posts while I was trying to enjoy that time away from my business!
I also sent out weekly emails to my newsletter subscribers and it continues to be one of my favourite things to do. Not to brag but I have the BEST email subscribers - you guys are so smart, funny and seriously crack me up with your replies. Keep ‘em coming and sign up below to join the fun - I’ll even send you my website pre-launch checklist to say thank you.
Blogging and sending out newsletters takes a LOT of time and effort but I know that it is time well spent. I can see a direct correlation between the content I create and how it increases traffic to my website, grows my audience, and in turn helps me to reach new business milestones. If there's anything you'd like me to cover, feel free to comment below and I'll add that to the queue!
HEALTH & FITNESS
Since I've been home, I've been doing a great job getting out and staying active! I've LOVED being able to go out running again, that's been one of the biggest perks and something I seriously missed (and often b*tched about) while I was in Bali. My goal is to hit 10k steps a day and thanks to my morning walks through the park and going out running, I'm having zero trouble hitting that. I've also been out on a few small hikes and it's been lovely to explore Canadian nature again.
I've also been biking all over the place which is loads of fun! There are some good bike lanes and paths around the city so I am less terrified of car traffic than I used to be.
I've been working out in the gym a fair bit too and it's been good but challenging getting back into weight lifting. I definitely feel stronger though so that's a bonus!
As for yoga, that kind of took a backseat in July. While I was in Bali I went to yoga more days than not but since I've been hope and doing other things, I usually average about 1 class a week. Not bad, but I can definitely tell that I'm less flexible than before haha.
As I read this section of the recap, I'm aware that my fitness in July was way less exciting than in previous months while I was travelling, but c'est la vie!
One thing that has changed, however, is that my predominately plant-based diet has been harder to keep up than I expected since I returned home. I'm still a vegetarian who eats a relatively small amount of animal products, but I have been eating #allthecheese since I've been back. It's also been a total 180 on the little-to-no-alcohol front that I enjoyed for the first half of the year. Since I've been home I've been drinking lots of wine, beer, and cocktails out on the patio. There's something about long summer nights and nice cold drinks that I have a hard time saying no to, especially when they're flowing so freely! I haven't been beating myself up about this change but I have still made a conscious effort not to hit the bottle too hard, lest I end up with a brutal hangover or something equally ghastly.
TRAVEL & EXPLORING
I spent most of July at home, but did take a few trips out of town to visit family and friends. I also flew to a different province for a friend's wedding and it was a blast being back out on the east coast after a few years away (I went to university out there!).
Now that I'm home for the summer and no longer travelling around Asia, this section of the monthly recaps might be a bit boring - sorry not sorry!
EVENTS & ACTIVITIES
July was a busy month and it flew by in the blink of an eye! I went out sailing a bunch and often took my friends along for a rip around the lake. I celebrated Canada day, several birthdays, went out for dinner on the regular, hit up patios around town, biked along the waterfront, attended a wedding, toured breweries, got to meet my bestie's baby (so cute!), and a whole lot more. I also binged Nailed It on Netflix (LOL'd for real) and watched a few movies when it was too hot to do anything else. It was a packed month but a good one!
BOOKS I READ
NEW ON THE BLOG IN JULY 2018
- How to add Pin It buttons to your Squarespace website - video tutorial
- 5 techniques for higher converting blog posts
- Should you be using popups on your Squarespace website?
- How to add and style a popup on your Squarespace website - video tutorial
- June 2018 Recap
- What should you be doing every week to grow you online business?
- How to turn down freelance clients in a way that won’t break your business
- Interview with Coworker.com for their "Coworkers of the World" Series
- Blog twice a week (or more)
- Send out weekly newsletter emails
- Launch online course
- Pitch article/guest blog post to 'goals' publication
- Media mention or feature
Now that you’re all caught up on what the heck I’ve been up to lately, it’s your turn to fill me in on how things are going with you! How was your month? Anything new and exciting that you’d like to share? Do you like these monthly recap posts or do you have zero interest reading about my escapades? I’d love to know so leave me a note in the comments below!
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