The 2023 Year In Review: Celebrating Growth & Changes

If I had to really summarize the year 2023 for this blog? It can be done in 3 points:

  1. Unexpected Growth in the mid
  2. Expected Decline towards the end (kind of)
  3. Big changes (like a lot)

Before I start blabbering about stats and numbers and what actually happened in the last 12 months,

I sincerely would like to thank each of you for participating in this in any way; Whether you followed me, kept track of my income reports, or even read anything I wrote, Thank you for everything!

As of writing this, I’m sitting on a train with earphones while watching this beautiful foggy winter morning over the window. I can truly appreciate the essence of what an online business can bring you; what I’ve started in college and built over the years truly paid off.

I hope to share useful insights in the content creation space as I learn on the go.

2023 was quite a journey; I might even go out and claim it was one of the best years of my life, full of happening events, growth, connections, traveling, and everything in between.

Speaking about traveling, I took over 21 flights, and almost all of the plans were made by others; I just had to tag along, whether with friends or family, haha.

Here are a few snippets of the same:

Quite drastic changes happened in the blogging/content creation space this year (and not in a virtuous way) when AI-pocalypse threatened the search space, and as a result, bloggers witnessed significant swings in oncoming traffic.

Google had massive changes in their core search updates that only resulted adversely in the blogging space, and people are still not able to

Which in turn made people realize (once again) the significance of social presence rather than solely relying on search traffic.

Appreciating change is what keeps you alive, stagnation only takes you to obsoletion.

Luckily for this blog, most of its audience hails from Pinterest and hence was unaffected by the helpful content updates from Google.

If you’ve been following this blog or have been keeping an eye out for income report posts, you already know there was a sudden surge in traffic from Pinterest, resulting in a drastic shift in overall income.

This happened more or less due to an overly inflated pin that I published back in 2020 (ahh, the mysteries of Pinterest never fail to amaze me).

But again, sticking to just one source for traffic isn’t the solution, even if it is bringing you $26,000 worth of traffic, because, eventually, it might die down as it did for me.

While diversification of traffic is my goal for the year 2024, I have also decided to diversify my blogging portfolio and grow multiple websites simultaneously, too.

Let’s talk income,

Here is a tabular representation of respective income for every month in 2023. Notice the sudden jump in income right around June, doubling the previous month’s numbers.

I’ve never hit $10k prior to this, let alone $26k a month.

Was this luck? Maybe!

A huge chunk of credit can go to luck; I don’t care!

But I feel like it is up to us to put in the best of our efforts to maximize the chances of you getting lucky. For example, if I didn’t qualify for Mediavine first, would this surge in traffic help me?

Maybe a little affiliate revenue here & there,

But you already know a huge chunk of my income comes from Mediavine;

Without being a part of such a premium ad network (that I worked hard to get in), this temporary influx of traffic wouldn’t have served me to such an extent that it did.

For the entirety of 2023, this blog made over $150k through all of its monetary avenues (Ads and affiliates).

And around about $121k of that came from Mediavine alone.

Mediavine Earnings,

A screenshot of Mediavine dashboard depicting the yearly income numbers compared to last years

Although the RPM was steady throughout the year at $50 to $70 on average, there were quite a few instances when the RPM touched over $90, and on Nov 27, RPM was about to touch $100 ($99.97), reference image below.

On the other hand, September 17 was one of this blog’s highest ad income days, making a massive $1,235; now, that was a little hard to believe.

Instances like these really put you into perspective, especially when you have lost sight of the big picture.

Why am I so involved in creating content & doubling down on website building even more?

To see more days like 17 September.

And since I cleared the $100k in the least 12 months threshold in October, I was expecting an invite to join the excluding community of “Mediavine Pro,” and on 1 November 2023, I got the mail for the same.

It really felt like a promotion.

What does it really mean to get into “Mediavine Pro”? What exclusive benefits does one get once accepted?

The perks:

  1. Revenue share bump from 75% to 85%
  2. Dedicated Pro Support Team
  3. Private Facebook Group Access
  4. Apply with additional sites for Mediavine Ad Management at a lower traffic threshold of 25k monthly sessions.
  5. A brand new dashboard

Earlier, the revenue share between the publisher and Mediavine was 75:25, meaning you get 75% of the revenue generated, and Mediavine takes 25%.

It has been increased to 85%, while Mediavine’s share is 15%.

Definitely, the revenue bump is nice and all, but what I am most excited about is the opportunity to bring another site that you own to Mediavine in a much lower traffic threshold, which is at least 25k sessions in the last 30 days (50k for the general applicant).

This is an absolute treat for someone with more than one site under their portfolio (me).

The link for each month’s Income report is given below (except for Jan, I didn’t publish that):

Blog traffic:

Sources, Trends, and Projections

Over the last 12 months, Pinterest has garnered over 80 million pin impressions, that too organically, converting to 1.54 million outbound links (CTR of almost 2%).

Pinterest reach for the last 12 month

Major business changes

In July, after much contemplation, I decided to launch four more websites apart from prosmartrepreneur.com and SayanNeogie.com as a tribute to the exponential growth in overall business and to utilize the creator economy properly in the coming years.

While two of those new sites are kinda in the same niche as this Prosmartrepreneur, one will be around the broad spectrum of “Travelling” (to push me to travel more and document the process along the way), the last one with a topic purely for my own learning intention, not so much about making money through it.

You know what they say? The best way to learn something is to learn as if you have to teach it to someone else.

Vision for 2024

If I am being honest, setting a specific goal almost never works for me;

I have had focus and procrastination issues for as long as I can remember, and I keep falling for the same “goal-setting” traps that I won’t be able to complete and left with that recurring feeling of “I guess this is me, who never completes a goal.”

One thing that has only worked for me is going as much as I creatively can on a specific day without actually setting much of a goal. Hence, they won’t be pressured to produce any work just for the sake of it.

I also realized that creating more profoundly impacts one’s life than mere mindless consumption.

If you’re in a perpetual pursuit of consumption, whether that is binge eating or mindlessly scrolling social media all day, these are the time and energy sinks that will eventually make you numb even to complete your everyday tasks.

So, less consumption & more creation are the two things that’ll be the motto for this year.

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