A ton has happened this year over at ASPC Headquarters (otherwise known as our kitchen lol).
I wanted to take some space and fill everyone in on what is the plan for this year and a little bit on what happened in 2015.
It’s weird – I could have sworn I wrote one of these for 2015, but it looks like the last one we did was back in 2014.
We have grown a lot since then. Back then, we were averaging a little over 60k visitors a month and now we are well over 200k a month. So 3 times the size. Pretty good growth, if you ask me.
It’s funny, looking back, we switched to Thesis and then to Genesis which we are still on. Still on WpEngine though and love it.
I mentioned we would add some more photography posts and we never quite got around to it ? I think we had 2 or 3 over the last 2 years.
Another goal we had was food blog tips posts and look for that to increase over the next year. We started to do some income reports, but have struggled with if they belong on the site. Our solution was to move them to ASPC’s new sister site, Married To Your Business.
One place we were really successful was in adding video posts. We have done a ton of these and really attribute our growth to this.
We have also improved our email service provider. We were switching to Aweber a while back, but hated it so we moved back to MailChimp and now we are on ConvertKit which we are hoping will really help us shore up our email sequences. You can read about that switch here.
So that was pretty much the goals we met and didn’t meet from the last year. And we have so much more in store for you this year.
And when I say “in store for you,” I really mean that we have put a huge emphasis on making the blog a place to help you with your journey and to learn about healthy eating and take back control over your health. Let’s take a quick look back at 2015 and some important milestones that happened:
- Consistent Content and Videos which was a major goal of our over the last 2 years.
- Launch and grow the YouTube channel. We hit 500,000 views on YT and over 8k subs.
- Traffic to ASPC has grown a bunch this year. We were just under 1.5 million uniques up from 912k last year falling just shy of my traffic goal for the year. Overall, very happy with this. We put some traffic generation stuff on hold to launch our course in the summer.
- Started our healthy food and lifestyle pivot. This is probably the thing I am the most happy about. We have really enjoyed the creativity in cooking healthy meals and helping other people reach their healthy goals.
- We finally replaced Lacey’s income by the end of the year. We also had our first $10,000 dollar month and our second.
- Lacey had a goal to really grow her Instagram account from almost nothing and now it’s over 10k!
While we both tend to operate with our heads down sometimes and lose sight of why we are doing what we are doing, when we take a breath, we are really just so thankful.
We can’t believe that here we are: a successful blog that makes Lacey a living. We are so happy with how everything has gone the last two years. Just a ton of progress on the site, moving it towards something we are so passionate about.
Our mediocre launch of the Kitchen Bootcamp led us to do some soul searching and evaluate what we wanted to do going forward. We looked back at surveys we had done, talked with our business coach, and decided we needed to dramatically shift our content.
Instead of focusing on scratch cooking and easy recipes, we needed to focus on stuff that kept us alive, but answered questions for our audience. You guys and gals 🙂
Enter: healthy eating. Lacey and I have been on a two year journey towards eating healthier, lifting weights, and ultimately a clean eating lifestyle.
This was something we could get behind and it made a huge difference in our energy level. And the big bonus for us was that it really resonated with our audience.
So Where Does ASPC Go From Here?
We have plans for a ton of stuff this year.
After a bunch of brainstorming, we have divided our content into 3 sections: (1) food – like recipes & cooking 101 types of posts, (2) healthy living – which includes healthy topics, fitness and meal planning, and (3) blogging tips – which will include photography and blogging tips mostly focused on a food blog angle.
While the food content will always be geared towards healthier topics, we are planning on some posts to revolve around specific techniques and tools also.
In the near future, we will have ASPC’s first fitness post which I know Lacey has been very excited about.
A New design?
There will be a lot of design tweaks going on over the next few months to really try and improve user experience. Some of the ads will be coming down to increase site load time and make it a little prettier. Lacey really hates the ads on her images.
The homepage has already had an update and will actually have a few more changes here soon.
We really want to highlight the best most useful content, also — the stuff everyone resonates with and emails Lacey about.
Blogging Tips – What Does That Mean?
As we have grown over the last two years, we have had a lot of people reach out and start asking questions about how they can get started with their own blogs and online businesses.
So we want to return the favor and give you some of the behind the scenes. There are a few pieces to this puzzle.
One is our new sister site called Married To Your Business which is focusing on starting and growing an online business as a couple or a family. There is a lot of good info that has nothing to do with couples and/or families on the site, but we are a couple with 3 kids that made this work so it will obviously have that slant to it.
Another piece to this is here on ASPC where we will start adding in 1-2 of these posts a month and highlighting this content a little more often.
We really want to add a ton of healthy content this year in our videos, recipes, tips and tricks. All leading to really growing our Take Back Your Health Academy. Which is the primary focus of the year for us business-wise.
This will include more of the FREE live healthy webinars Lacey has been doing. Plus more videos and content around some key issues, like how to quit sugar and healthy meal planning.
Introducing A New Member
Many of you know that Sean has been doing a lot of video for us as we have grown over the last 2 years. However, we are happy to announce that he is now a full-time paid member of ASPC as of April. Woohoo!
So give him a big congrats. In fact, I have fancy new payroll software as we have switched over to an LLC and have actual employees.
AND FINALLY A Big Thanks…
I just wanted to take a quick moment here to thank you. This has been an incredible year for us, and I hope it was the same for you, too.
We are here to help make 2016 a great year for you. We want to make your food and health journey as easy and as painless as possible. If you ever have any questions, whether it’s food or blogging related, just leave a comment or shoot us an email. We always answer them personally, even if it takes a little bit 🙂
What are some of the big plans that you have for this year? Share them below and let’s make it happen!
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