WriterSanctuary in 2022

WriterSanctuary in 2022: Not to Bad, All Things Considered

Last Updated on by Michael Brockbank

Here we are, the beginning of 2023. As I get to work on my plans and goals, one of them is to take a look back at WriterSanctuary and see where it landed in the grand scheme of things. Although we could have done better, it wasn’t too bad of a year, overall.

Today, I’m going to look at several points of data. So, if that’s not your thing, I hope you have a great day. However, looking at this type of data can be quite influential when it comes to building any kind of website.

Especially if you currently don’t have a content strategy in place.

Sure, you can wing your blog posts. But it doesn’t mean your site will be successful when it comes to organic search results. If you’re trying to drive traffic, you need to provide what people want to read or watch. And you can do this by analyzing your progress throughout the year.

How Did WriterSanctuary Perform in 2022?

WriterSanctuary has two primary platforms: the blog and the YouTube channel. As I’m trying to develop both simultaneously, I’ll need to take a look at how each one performed individually.

I already know the YouTube channel didn’t perform nearly as well. That’s what happens when you’re not consistent with uploading videos that your subscribers want to watch.

The Blog – 38,375 Views

Blog in 2022

Last year was the first time WriterSanctuary.com had a loss in traffic. A massive part of this is because of the algorithm changes throughout the year by Google.

Currently, a large number of older articles are registered as “Not Indexed.” This means I’ll need to update those articles to bring them up to today’s standards and manually request indexing.

This is something I wanted to do anyway simply because I know the value of updating older articles. So, I have my work cut out for me in that department. Some of them are pretty cringy.

It also didn’t help that I published 26 fewer articles in 2022 than I did in 2021.

Despite losing quite a bit of traffic, the AdSense revenue was much higher in 2022. In fact, it grew by 56.2% compared to the previous year. To put this into perspective, that’s the difference between $162.36 and $253.64.

I know, it’s not a lot. Then again, AdSense really doesn’t pay out as well as other methods of monetization. I’ve made more from sponsored posts than from AdSense.

What I find interesting is how AdSense for 2022 was actually short a couple of months when I was testing out Ezoic’s Basic platform. I bet the income would have been far greater if for not removing AdSense for Basic as a test run.

The bottom line is that WriterSanctuary’s RPM went up from $3.58 to $8.47 even though the overall traffic was lower.

Top 10 Post Types

Alrighty, now let’s take a look at the top content types for the blog. This will give us an idea as to what kind of articles perform the best on the website. Every site and niche is different, which is why it’s ultra-valuable to take a look at your own analytics.

  1. Review of Blog Monetizing: Never underestimate the value of writing a review.
  2. How to Write: Showing people how to do something can really drive traffic.
  3. Homepage: This is how a lot of people will come across your website.
  4. Q&A for Textbroker: This is when you answer a common question people ask in Google.
  5. Listicle of Textbroker Tips: A list-article (listicle) is an ultra-common content type on the Internet.
  6. Q&A for Textbroker
  7. Review of a Self-Publishing Platform
  8. How to WordPress
  9. Review of a Writing App
  10. Listicle of Apps

As you can see, I don’t have any “best of” articles in the top 10. That’s because I can’t call something the “best” if I’ve never used it. Hopefully, I’ll be able to put out a couple this year as I look at various products and services.

The YouTube Channel – 27,904 Views

YouTube Watch Time

Since the beginning of February, the YouTube channel has been on a steady decline. Despite having an “average” click-through rate, the videos are just not being shown in “Suggested” videos as often. Again, I suspect YouTube’s algorithm changes as a major contributor.

In fact, I’ve run a few tests myself using several other channels. If you don’t create “binge-worthy” content, YouTube all but ignores you. And when you have an instructional channel, binge-worthiness is harder to achieve.

Recently, about 20% of the videos shown to me on my homepage on YouTube were of channels I actively follow. However, another 60% of the videos were of channels I’m not subscribed to but often watch.

The other 20% were videos that had similar content to the other 60% that I watched. So, does having subscribers really matter in the long run? I even get push notifications for channels of which I’m not subscribed.

Another major element of the decline is the fact that I didn’t upload a lot of videos last year. I usually stick with the Monday night live streams, but don’t upload regular videos that often.

It’s just kind of frustrating when I put so much time into videos that YouTube won’t distribute. Especially since I don’t have a lot of time, to begin with.

Perhaps the most depressing part is how well the channel was doing in 2021.

Comparing YouTube with 2021

Top 10 Videos of 2022

Much like the blog, we can get some valuable info by looking at the views for 2022 and what videos were the most accessed. Of course, we also want to keep an eye on watch time and subscriber counts.

You can have a lot of views and still have piss-poor results on everything else.

  1. Q&A for Textbroker
  2. How to for Textbroker
  3. How to for WordPress
  4. Q&A for AdSense
  5. Reaction to Writing Platform
  6. Reaction to Writing Platform
  7. Writing Experiment Video
  8. How to Textbroker
  9. How to WordPress
  10. Review for Blog Monetizing

It’s funny how on the blog, the monetizing review was the most viewed while its video counterpart was 10th on the list.

Unfortunately for me, most of my subscribers are doing so because of the Textbroker content. I don’t use Textbroker as much today simply because I outgrew the platform.

Don’t get me wrong, I still think Textbroker is great. But I make far more money today with private clients.

What’s the Plan for 2023?

Although the above numbers aren’t very reassuring, I’m still confident I can see some positive growth this year. Not only do I have a new schedule that should help me be more productive, but I have a few ideas that might pan out relatively well.

Then again, I could just wind up starting over after another algorithm change.

Researching Products and Services

There are certain types of content that simply do well regardless of a blog’s or YouTube channel’s niche. Most of those center around reviews and lists of various products and services.

In fact, the top article on the blog last year was my review of Buy Me a Coffee.

I would like to explore new products and services for bloggers, freelancers, and self-publishers. I’ve already begun testing out new writing software and plan on creating a “best of” list as soon as I’ve tested a few more.

To do this, I’ll set up blocks of time throughout the week for the strict purpose of testing out those products and services. Before, I tried to make time in the afternoon. But between being exhausted at the end of the day and simply forgetting, I didn’t get as many checked out in 2022.

More Content

In order to surpass 2022s traffic numbers for both the blog and the YouTube channel, I’ll need more content, obviously. However, it’s going to take more than just posting as much as I can.

Sure, some of the one-off articles and videos didn’t perform too badly with my respective audiences. Nonetheless, I’ll still need some researched content to attract more readers. This is where researching products and services come into play.

Perhaps the most difficult part is making YouTube happy with a series of videos that are “binge-worthy.” People usually just get the info they need from a video and move on.

The fun part is having to create two separate content strategies. Even though the blog and YouTube channel have similar content, the audiences are very distinct.

What works for the blog doesn’t necessarily perform well at all on the YouTube channel, and vice-versa.

In any case, I am going to get back to publishing more content for the blog and the YouTube channel. I just hope I can find something you all want to read or watch.

Currently, the plan is to publish articles and videos every Wednesday and Friday. I’ll try to do them more often, but for now, I just don’t have enough time in the week.

Keep in mind, I’m writing two books at the moment.

Still, two per week is more than I did last year. So, I’d call that a win if I can stick with it.

Rewriting Older Posts

More content is fine, but what about the articles that are already online? It’s always best to bring those older pieces up to date with fresh information. In fact, updating older articles is a massive part of my job with one of my clients.

I have a lot of stuff reaching as far back as 2014 that could definitely use a bit of sprucing up. Why not just delete them and start over? Because I know I’ll forget to set up redirects and such.

Not to mention that my current most popular article was originally written in 2016. This goes to show what happens when you constantly keep an article up-to-date.

And yes, that particular article is sitting at the #1 spot of a relatively popular search term.

New Homepage and Layout

I’ve been threatening this for years, but I’m finally going to rework the homepage and layout of the WriterSanctuary blog. This is another thing I plan on setting up as a block of time in my day.

Again, if I don’t, I’ll forget.

I plan on starting these changes in the next couple of weeks. As I’m rebuilding a dead blog, I want to fix its homepage first. Then, I’ll move on to WriterSanctuary.

It’s going to be quite the undertaking as I am also moving pages around, setting up different links, revamping the menus, and a whole lot more. I’m hoping the end result will be a website that is more welcoming and easier to manage.

YouTube Views and Watch Time from the Blog

For some reason, I no longer receive watch time and view credit for any YouTube videos watched from this website. I spent a large amount of time last year trying to figure out why.

Something I have installed in WordPress is cutting off YouTube somewhere.

This is where I lost a lot of my views and watch time, actually. I have a lot of readers who will watch the videos directly from the blog. So, even if someone binge-watches videos from WriterSanctuary.com, I still don’t get credit from YouTube.

This is something else I’ll have to set up a block of time to complete. I’ve already run a series of tests and have narrowed down a few things. With any luck, I’ll get views and watch time back from the blog this year.

Making 2023 Awesome for WriterSanctuary

A lot can happen over the next year. And based on the lackluster performance of WriterSanctuary in 2022, I’m sure this year will be something epic. Well, that is as long as I maintain my workflow and keep looking for topics people want to read and watch.

If you have any suggestions, feel free to leave a comment. I’m always interested in what my audience has to say.

In any case, I’m looking forward to seeing what I can create in 2023. Especially considering the books I’m currently working on. But no matter what, though, I thank you for sharing this journey with me.

I hope that I can continue to help you in your writing journey throughout the coming years. Let’s make 2023 something epic!

Michael Brockbank
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