Keep Moving Forward – My 3rd Blog Anniversary

- | 150 Aha! comments | Posted in category: Celebrations

birthday balloon means keep moving forward

Life is a journey where you just have to keep moving forward. There’s no turning back. I’d say blogging has similarity with this quality of life – you keep on blogging and there’s no stopping.

Your goals and path often modify and transform – don’t they? Therefore, as life progresses, you keep changing and evolving to get better.

I’m a progressive blogger too, and I’ve reached a yet new milestone. My blog turns 3 years old today on Christmas!

The whole world will celebrate Aha!NOW’s third Blogoversary! Just kidding. 🙂 It’s Christmas – you’ll celebrate, along with New Year’s that’d follow up soon.

These events symbolically tell us to keep hope and believe in change.

They tell us to keep moving forward, keep faith, keep trying, and keep changing, because success comes to only those who believe and make the efforts.

I’m glad to have made continuous efforts for three years, and I’m happy with what I’ve learned along the way.

Oh, it’s not money that I’ve earned much, but the love and respect of the people and the wonderful bloggers.

I’ve learned to be a better human being, a better blogger, and a better writer. I’d say I’ve done my job, but I’m not fully satisfied because there’s a lot more to be accomplished

As a blogger and a writer, I feel there’s a lot more to learn. Life is full of learning and there’s always a steep upward curve, isn’t it? I wonder if we would ever reach a plateau where there’s nothing more to learn in blogging.

There’s still miles and miles to go, yet this milestone is important for me and for Aha!NOW.

“Forward momentum. That’s my new motto. No regrets. And no going back.” ~ Gayle Forman

What Did I Achieve to Keep Moving Forward

Achievements are any person’s biggest incentives and motivators. They’re the fruits of labor and rewards of service.

What I achieve helps me keep moving forward to achieve more and keep improving Aha!NOW.

Besides the invaluable love and respect of my admirers, friends, and followers, I think it’s time I recount the material progress I made in terms of my blog’s statistics.

I did tell you my blog story in the second blogoversary post. I’ll make a comparison of the facts and assess how far I’ve come or progressed in one year.

[table width=”400″ colwidth=”100|100|100|100″ colalign=”left|left|left|left”]
Item,Till Dec12,Till Dec13,Increase
Posts,96,182,89%
Comments,4500,10600,135%
Alexa Traffic Rank,77000,31000,59%
Google+,2380,11500,383%
Facebook,1220,2800,129%
Twitter,2440,4400,80%
[/table]

Not only this, there has been a phenomenal 200% increase in the blog’s site traffic in terms of page views, visits, and unique visitors respectively.

This seems pretty cool. Of course, it could’ve gotten better if I’d increased the frequency of blog posts to thrice a week or more. But then that would’ve dearly cost me my health.

Why? Well, you know why. It’s the length of my posts and comments. It’s just that I take lots of time and effort to work on my posts and comments.

I believe in giving my readers ALL the possible information about a particular topic when they visit my blog, and reply to each comment, just as I’m talking to someone who visits my home 🙂

But I did get the tag of “commenting superstar” with my sole guest post about blog commenting on Adrienne’s blog, the engagement superstar herself.

Recently, Asaolu did a case study about social sharing on me and few bloggers called me the “mother of all bloggers”!

Well, I admit that I’m not worthy of such a title, as that should be used for a blogger who knows it all, which I don’t, and it makes me feel old too!!. LOL! 🙂

There were few other interviews taken by various bloggers , and I’ve put them all up in the About page of the blog.

“To move forward, you have to leave the past behind” ~ Susannah Cahalan

Social Shares and Comments

Didn’t I tell you that it’s the social sharing and blog commenting that has largely helped bringing my blog to the place where it is, besides the content.

This directly implies that it’s the readers of Aha!NOW, the wonderful blog community, and the social media fans and followers that need to be thanked for being generous engagers and promoters.

In fact, this year my blog on average, received about 890 social shares per post on the major social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Stumble Upon.

The more you share, the more I keep moving forward. Without your social push, the blog will remain stagnant.

This year, averagely each post has had 72 comments.

Many people have told me that I’ve an engaging blog community, and I’m proud of this fact. It’s the commenters of Aha!NOW that need to be appreciated.

I’ve more stats and I’d show them in a table format so it’s easy to understand.

[table width=”500″ colwidth=”150|150|150″ colalign=”left|left|left”]
Aspect, Post, Stat
Most shared Post,9 Early signs of an abusive relationship,All social shares combined
Most commented Post,How to make a successful blog in 3 simple ways,151 comments
Most viewed Post,9 Early signs of an abusive relationship,10000 views
Most Tweets,How to create life options for yourself,2.1k Twitter shares
Most Google +1s,15 breast cancer prevention tips for men and women,200 G+ likes
Most on FB,Early signs of an abusive relationship,4.5k likes and shares
[/table]

Just to let you know, I used the free WordPress plugin WP Social Stats to retrieve the social data. Trust me to sit and count and compare each post and the social shares! 🙂

I found a nifty WordPress plugin Advanced Blog Metrics that can help you get your blog metrics. I got to know that on average, the length of comments on Aha!NOW is 120 words and the post length is about 1627 words.

Top Commenter

One blog metric most bloggers of the Aha!NOW blogging community would want to know is who was the top commenter of Aha!NOW for the year 2013.

Well, it was a close tie! Therefore, I’d say there were five loyal members of my blogging community. They are Corina, Babanature, Adrienne, Debbie, and Sylviane!

Others who often commented and shared their valuable opinions on Aha!NOW were Hiten, Donna, Mayura, Lisa, and Carolyn.

I’d say these are the top ten commenters of my blog and I’m proud of them, besides being thankful for their love and support always.

Want to become a part – then join up the blog community, and subscribe to the blog so that you never miss a post! I’d love to have you over!

“Change has to come for life to struggle forward.” ~ Helen Hollick

climbing finger symbol of keep moving forward

What’s Left to Achieve and Move Forward

It doesn’t always happen that everything goes as per your plan. Life is like that.

However, the down times don’t dishearten me and subdue my spirits. I’ll keep moving forward and keep giving my best wherever possible.

For a long time I wanted to have interviews and reviews on my blog.

I also wanted experts in various fields related to life and the other mentioned niches, to use Aha!NOW as a platform to extend their help to people through their knowledge and experience.

However, the one aspect I’m lacking in terribly is generating revenue from the blog.

Actually, as I’ve stated many times before, I never thought of earning money from the blog, because I didn’t want to divert from my aim of genuinely helping people.

But now I’m thinking of finding decent ways to make money so as to make Aha!NOW self sufficient. I’d be investing more on it and the extra revenue would certainly help me to deliver more and better services to my readers.

What’s New on Aha!NOW

Every year should’ve something new that makes change obvious and apparent, isn’t it? That’s how you keep moving forward. Yes, there’ll be a few new things you’ll see on Aha!NOW.

Interviews

I’d pick up and interview one special person in a month on Aha!NOW. This person could be a blogger, an activist, an entrepreneur, or an expert on some specific topic related to the categories on Aha!NOW.

The members of my blog community will get preference, so those who’re regular readers and contributors of Aha!NOW, get yourself ready for a special feature on you!

I plan to have these interviews based more on the personal life of the person because the professional aspect you already read all over. I want you to connect with them through their life and struggles.

Advertisements

This year onward, I’m implementing banner advertisements on my blog at select positions. I’ll make sure they do not hamper your viewing experience in any way.

I’ll only approve of Ads that I believe go with the ethos and values of Aha!NOW and the valued community and readers.

I’ve put up a new Advertise page on the blog. Any interested person can fill up the form and ask for the advertising details. I’ll soon be offering an advertising kit as well.

I’d also be accepting sponsored posts, including reviews, but there’ll be many strings attached to them.

Honestly, I deliberated a lot on this aspect. It was difficult to decide whether to have them or not. I get numerous offers for guest posts and sponsored posts everyday but I don’t approve of them.

I’d make no compromise with the quality of the sponsored post, so I decided that I’ll write them myself. Further, I’d not allow just any link to go with the post, which obviously will be clearly marked as a sponsored post.

I won’t let you as a reader of Aha!NOW, be misled, and certainly won’t permit links of any product or service that does not deserve to be promoted.

Aha!NOW Branding

I must confess that I’ve fallen in love with Aha!NOW. It’s been my baby, and now it’s growing!. So, it needs to have its own name and fame, don’t you think so?

I’ve created social profiles in the name of Aha!NOW. I request all my present fans and followers of Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ to follow, like, and circle the new profiles of my blog, Aha!NOW.

I need and want to make more changes on this blog, but I can’t do that without your help. You’re the guardians of Aha!NOW, and I’m sure you too want it to grow.

So, here’s what you need to do.

“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” ~ Walt Disney

girl wishing with three flowers

Future Plans of Aha!NOW

Without mincing any words, I’d be unhesitant to say that the future of Aha!NOW depends on you, the reader.

Accordingly, the future plans for Aha!NOW would be made after I find out what you want or don’t want. After all, this blog has to be based on your needs and likes.

Your contribution will help me make my blog and posts more interesting and relevant to you. That’s the only way we can move forward, when we are in it together.

I’d like you to help me draft my strategy and plans for Aha!NOW for the coming year by taking a reader’s survey.

Click here to take survey

You’ll be taken to the Survey Monkey site where I’ve a set of questions for you to answer in an objective format. That means, you just need to choose an option from the given set of choices.

It shouldn’t take you more than 5 minutes to complete the survey, where you’d be telling me about yourself, and your likes or dislikes.

Don’t worry – this survey will be completely anonymous, which means that I’ll not get to know who has filled which form. This would help me to look into your suggestions objectively and make a fair assessment and decide how I would be moving forward with the blog.

So, are you game? Then click on this link. Thanks in advance for being a supporter.

“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” ~ Henry Ford

I’ve so many ideas and I wish I could implement them all on this blog. I just might, slow and steady does it, isn’t it? I dream of taking Aha!NOW to new frontiers and reach greater heights.

I hope my present plans kick off successfully and I get more funds and time to spend on the blog. I also pray that your wishes also get fulfilled with the coming New Year.

I wish you can take a break and rejuvenate in these holidays. I’ll be taking one too to work on ALL the above new developments as they involve a lot of planning

I would be back early next year now with my new post. Till then, be with your loved ones and enjoy yourselves.

Wishing you and your family Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year! 🙂

Happy Holidays!

Over to you –

Did you take the survey? What do you think of the Aha!NOW growth story and its new plans? What things do you do to keep moving forward in life and in blogging? Share in the comments.

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos



Show Comments

150 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Arsh

    June 4, 2015 at 7:31 pm

    Congratulations!

  2. viks

    September 9, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    gud stuff…..I also like the idea of positioning the blog to be self sustaining. I’ve always advocated for bloggers to go beyond posting good posts and driving traffic. Learning to monetize a blog is actually the secret to blogging success.

  3. Abdul gaffar

    June 9, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    First of all congo. Blog Anniversary…
    Im following you mam and you articles are wroth reading and valuable..So, ahead and make more updates Im waiting from you more articles …

  4. Philip Verghese 'Ariel'

    January 15, 2014 at 6:13 am

    Hi Harleena,
    I am sorry I am too late here to congratulate you at this joyous occasion. Though I was not there from the beginning, i am so happy that i found out such a wonderful blogger to connect with the activities of Aha!Now. 🙂 It’s really interesting to note that your blog’s birthday falls on that wonderful day called Christmas. And I liked your reason for it 
    It’s is really amazing to note the developments in this informative place. Indeed a great round up with lot of info about your blog statistic and other activities. I appreciate your patience to attend each and every response you receive. Though it’s a tedious job you do it very religiously, I really appreciate this, since a newbie comes and post a comment and he or she receive a response to it, definitely that will be a great encouragement to them and I am sure they turn back to the place to check in to find out more activates. I am sure the reader’s response is the vital part of any blog and a blogger should not neglect to respond back, though sometimes it may not be a pleasant one. Your decision in this regard is much appreciated. As you said there is another side too, some bloggers never respond to your comments. Yes, it happened to me several times, though we regularly visit and post our response some bloggers never turn to that side or say a word, this is not a good trend in blogging. Few professionals may think that they are settled or firmly put their feet on the blogging world, why to bother about such comments of newbies! This attitude is very discouraging.
    The new titles few showered upon you is indeed true and you need not worry about the age factor there take it as a challenge, you are eligible for those titles. Keep moving, the New Year’s new plan I just read, and good to know that you have a great plan for the year 2014. May God help you to fulfill its well in the days ahead. Yes, miles to go and miles to go. We Wish You All The Best. Have A Happy and Healthy Blogging Days Ahead!
    Keep informed
    Best Regards
    Phil

  5. Phillip Dews

    January 14, 2014 at 6:17 pm

    Wow what a post Harleena. that was an epic one and it took me a while to read but am grateful I did so thank you for sharing your thoughts!
    I will deffo be adding those plugins you mentioned although i am trying not to add to many as I just got my blog page load speed to 400ms now after it was 6 – 10 seconds a week ago.

    All I got at the moment is the stats from the Jetpack plugin atm but I may take that off as i always have the Google analytics anyway!
    Saying that I may take it off now.

    Right that’s done it’s gone and I just installed Advanced Blog Metrics so thanks for that!Yep I took part in your survey and i have shared out the post on G+ and Twitter for you!

    Was going to ask though have you thought about redesigning your blog this year seeing as it’s 3 years out if so let me know I would be more than happy to help a fellow blogger like yourself!

    I see your using cloudflare which is great but have you thought about using maxcdn and w3 total cache as well as I just tested your site on pingdom and its taking 5 seconds to load! plus you got 146 requests have a look at my latest post on speed there are a few things on there you may not have considered!

    Looks like you got some bit plans for the blog this year and I’m excited to see what you come up with!
    Happy New Year Harleena

    – Phillip

  6. Chadrack

    January 13, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    Congratulations! Must say you’ve done so very well in 3 years. Not many will achieve what you have achieved thus far. It’s a reward for your hard work and dedication.

    I also like the idea of positioning the blog to be self sustaining. I’ve always advocated for bloggers to go beyond posting good posts and driving traffic. Learning to monetize a blog is actually the secret to blogging success. Your plans to have ads on the site is a good move in the right direction. I’m very sure that you will soon begin to see some good bids.




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Keep Moving Forward – My 3rd Blog Anniversary

by Harleena Singh time to read: 9 min