2019: Best & Worst | On the Daily EXPRESS

12/30/19

2019: Best & Worst

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As we're wrapping up 2019 and reflecting on the past year, I wanted to do a little blog review and check out some stats to find out my best and worst performing posts of the year. I thought sharing some results here on the blog would be a good way to close out the year for my last post of 2019! Plus, since I'll be using this info to help me decide which types of posts to do more or less often in the future, this will give you a good idea of what to expect here in the coming year!

Top Five Posts of 2019

1. Ten Work From Home Outfits: Original Post HERE


This was my #1 post of 2019, and that's amazing to me since I posted it in May. All of my other top posts from this year came from the first few months of the year. Generally that's because they've had more time to gain traction and additional clicks from Pinterest and search engines. But I think a lot of people work from home these days and I guess they're like me in that struggle to find the right balance of comfortable and practical...but still polished. On another note, it also makes me happy/relieved that a post that contains exclusively top-view selfies like this is a top performer! This type of photo isn't as popular as it was a few years back, but I still like it! Not just because it's fairly easy for me to take/edit, but I like the way it shows the outfit details. It's similar to a Flatlay in my opinion, where you aren't necessarily getting the best look at the fit of each piece, but you get the elements of the outfit in an uncomplicated way.

2. Ten Ways to Wear Cognac Ankle Boots: Original Post HERE

On the other side of the photo spectrum, I'm glad my face isn't so bad that all of my posts with face pictures were kept out of the top five! Haha! This post was a collaboration with Lisa of Daily Style Finds, and collaborations are usually a good way to boost traffic to a post, so I wasn't too surprised to see this here! I really didn't do a lot of collabs in 2019, and it's not for lack of interest on my part. They just take a bit more time to plan and organize in advance, and I haven't been proactive about that. I'm just barely finding enough time to put together blog posts as it is, much less think ahead far enough to include other people in the process! I also don't see many other bloggers doing collabs either these days so I think it's partly just a shift in the blogging world. Aside from that, I think it helps this particular post that we styled a fairly basic piece that a lot of people own. It's always nice to get ideas for using what you already have vs. shopping for new things.

3. Classic vs. Trendy: Original Post HERE
Sweater (c/o) | Similar Jeans | Boots (c/o Shopbop) | Similar Bag

Well, this one is definitely a surprise for me. This set of photos was the worst I posted in 2019 in my opinion, because we waited until it was too dark to take these pictures. But I loved the outfit and thought you could see the pieces well enough anyway, so I just went for it. I don't really set the bar high here for photography, but I was still surprised this made the top five. I'm kind of wondering if the graphic in this post of One Sweater + Six Shoe Options is helping the post, because typically just a single outfit post doesn't do this well. I always struggle with deciding which shoes to wear, so maybe I need to document my shoe selection process a little more frequently for others in the same boat like I did in that post.

I should also say that even though a single outfit post doesn't usually perform spectacularly well, I still have to do them for a couple of reasons. First, they are the building blocks for other posts! I can't share four ways I've worn something until I wear and photograph it four times! I don't have the means to do extended photo sessions with multiple outfit changes to make those posts happen in short order, so I just have to build them over time from previous posts. Second, I am a stickler for consistency, and part of staying consistent means having a mix of longer and shorter posts depending on how much free time I have in real life to put my posts together for the week.

4. Camo Cardigan + Friday Favorites: Original Post HERE

This post was from the same week as the previous post...go figure! I guess February was a good month for me last year. Friday Favorites posts are usually my most popular in a given week, but that has more to do with the link-up hosts who have an incredible amount of traffic that trickles down to participants more than it has to do with any of my content. But still...this was a pretty ordinary Friday Favorites post so I have no idea why it did so much better than others. Was the re-stocked Camo Cardigan really that popular? I don't know, but I do know that other camo posts I've done have been fairly popular too, so I guess that could be it. Regardless, this likely won't change how I do things in 2020 because 1) It's a pretty rare exception to the Repeat Item Rule, which is that items don't become more popular the second time you wear/share them, and 2) I can only wear so much camo! As far as the Repeat Item Rule, that's not to say I won't repeat items anymore. That's totally impractical for me, and like I mentioned above, those can still be building block outfit posts even if they aren't an exciting, clickable post in and of themselves.

On a Behind the Scenes note...the location in the photo above was my favorite place to take photos in the first half of 2019. It was a pretty quiet little plaza on the weekend...until they gave it a makeover and opened a restaurant! Now it's always busy seven days a week, so I rarely go there anymore. I was bummed to lose that location, but c'est la vie. Obviously they need to make money from the property and it sure wasn't happening thanks to my blog photo sessions!

5. Foolproof Outfit Formula Ten Ways: Original Post HERE

This is another post that makes me very happy to see in the top five! This post has ten ways to wear one outfit formula, and any post along these lines usually takes a considerable amount of time to put together. So it's rewarding to see that it resonated with a few extra people! I did a couple of other Foolproof Outfit Formula Posts later this year (see them here and here), so hopefully some of those will gain traction over time. I don't know how many new posts I can create in this style, simply because I don't have that many go-to outfit combinations. However I do repeat these formulas ad nauseam, so I guess I can eventually do another post with ten more ways I've worn this combination. I'm just afraid it would meet the typical fate of Repeat Items (i.e. people aren't very interested in them), so TBD on that.

I'm also noticing that Ten is a magical number here! Three of my top five posts are, "Ten Ways to Wear" Something. I'm more likely to do two or three ways to wear something, but I guess if I want it to stick I need to aim a little higher!

Before I move on I should mention that my Daily Ritual Jumpsuit above has been re-stocked! I know it's the beginning of winter and might be too cold to wear this for awhile, but if it interests you it might not be a bad idea to try it now and hang onto it for spring. It became an influencer favorite last year and sold out quickly in all of the colors, so I won't be surprised if that happens again this year.

Worst Posts:
For 2019, it turns out there were two kinds of posts that really performed worse than average for my standard M/W/F Fashion & Lifestyle Posts. First, Recaps of any kind. Whether it's a Monthly Outfit Recap or a Travel Recap, it's not going to be a reader favorite. Well. It's a little awkward finding that out in the middle of doing a Recap Post, but live and learn!! Haha! This is a slow time of year for traffic anyway so hopefully this post won't make things much worse. I also started doing a Monthly Outfit Recap Post in September, but I think I'm going to toss that idea in 2020 and try something else. I don't travel a lot so Travel posts are only 1-2 times per year, but going forward, instead of a dedicated Travel Recap post I think I'll just share a mini-recap with a photo or two in my Monthly Update.

Second, any type of collage-based post is not a favorite around here. February had a lot of my top-performing posts, but it also had my worst performing post, Snakeskin Trend + Hits & Misses. I did have some other try-ons and reviews in addition to the collages, but chances are people didn't even click into the post to find that out once they saw the title + intro collage. Those types of posts are fun for me to put together, but I do understand why they're not very popular. At least from what I've seen on my blog, people much prefer to see things I've personally tried so I can either recommend or tell you why it should be avoided, rather than just fashion finds or things I might want to try. I don't do a lot of those posts as it is, but I definitely won't be increasing their frequency going forward!

Book Notes:
My book posts tend to bring in an entirely different audience via the reading community than my regular fashion posts, but since I'm in review and analyze mode I wanted to look at a few things. First, my total number of books reviewed this year was 116! I'm pretty happy with that number since I make it an unofficial, low-pressure goal to read about 2 books per week: one on Kindle and one on Audio. That would put me at 96 for the year so I met and surpassed my reading goal!

Also, you would think my book posts would get about the same number of page views each month since really, how different can they be? They do get a fairly similar number each month, but February was my top month! Apparently February was my top month for all things blogging this year, and I have no idea why! I feel like I do similar things every month so it's amusing and/or baffling when sometimes it clicks more than others. My Summer Page Turners post also did pretty well for a non-standard Book Review Post so I may put another one of those together next year, but my Favorite Audiobooks post...not so much. Maybe audiobooks just haven't caught on as much, whereas almost everyone loves a good page-turner!

Final Thoughts: 
I definitely gained some good insights from doing this post, so thanks for coming along with me on the process if you made it to the end of this post. And bonus points if you remember any of these past posts from 2019! Thanks for your support on another year of this adventure! I don't have any major changes planned on the blog front in 2020, but I do want to take what I learned today and do more of the best and less of the worst!


CONVERSATION

14 comments:

  1. Such a good way to look back on your year of blogging! :) It's interesting February was such a popular month for your posts - I find things slow down in December and January but February it starts to pick up again with everyone getting back to routines and blog life! :)

    Hope that you had a great 2019 and you have a wonderful new year ahead of you! :)

    Away From Blue

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    1. That's a good hypothesis Mica! And it's still cold enough in this hemisphere that people are trapped indoors and more likely to read blogs! LOL!

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  2. Our collaboration on cognac boots was also one of my top performers. I still like top view photos - and I agree, I wish they were still popular. I say keep doing them! The end of the year brings a lot of reflection - thoughts of where blogging is going - and where I am going with it. I so enjoyed reading your insights - and look forward to what you do in 2020! Happy New Year!

    Lisa
    Daily Style Finds

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    1. I'm glad to hear our collab was a top performer for you too! We need to think of another one! LOL! And my top view pics do pretty well on Pinterest too...so I'm not giving them up just yet even if they aren't as "in" now.

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  3. I'm in the process of putting together my top performing posts and really like that you added the bottom performers as well. I think the top view photos are really helpful to see all of the details. I'm so impressed with the number of books you read this year! Happy New Year Gina!

    Jill - Doused in Pink

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed this, Jill! Even if you don't want to share your worst performers...it's still interesting to see. I was surprised there was such a dominant trend for mine whereas top performers were a little more all over the place!

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  4. Great job analyzing your posts! It's fun to keep up with all of it!

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  5. Great minds indeed, Gina! You did a much more thorough job of this than I did. Analyzing these types of things makes my mind want to explode. LOL. I love that camo sweater! Happy New Year friend!!! XOXO

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    1. Oh you're too funny. My brain wants to explode when I try to figure out the "why" of these things. Why is one post so much more popular than another when they're fairly similar? It's mind boggling for sure!

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  6. Hi Gina,
    I just discovered your blog and and I'm glad I did. I like the warms tones on each option.
    Happy New Year!
    x

    https://ahomewithcare.blogspot.com/

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  7. I think it's fun to have a look back! I can see why your best posts performed so well. I love posts like that. I think with recap posts in general they don't perform well, but I think they are so fun for real, consistent readers to see because they give a good glimpse at your life! I know my Life Lately posts don't perform well, but those family members that read my blog love them! They just aren't as 'pinnable'. Oh well!

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    1. That's a good point, Laura! I do have some family members who like the less popular posts. And they can't all be top performers anyway!

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