Amy Trumpeter had been teaching for 13 years when she came to a realization that she wanted to travel more and Globetrotter Guru was born.
Revenue of $100/mo
Email list size of 150
Founded in 2015
Hello! What’s your background, and what is your blog about?
My name is Amy Trumpeter and I studied Religion and Theology and MA in South Asian studies at Manchester University. Then, I was a teacher for 13 years but realized I wanted to travel more and become financially independent so I became a blogger in 2015.
My blog Globetrotter Guru is a solo female travel blog predominantly read by women travelers in their 20s and 30s. It inspires people to travel solo and offers itineraries, city guides and hotel and hostel reviews.
I’m excited to have recently hit 1000 page views a day. On average, my monthly blog views are 7000-10,000 per month. I recently hit $100 a month in passive income, which has taken me a while to get used to as I wasn’t monetizing in the beginning.
What motivated you to get started with the blog?
My idea for the blog was original to document my travels for my mum and friends back home. Then I realized that people were running blogs as a business and earning a passive income from them, so I upped the anti and started to see it as a way out of teaching. I loved being in the classroom but it was very hard work and very little time off.
I was a Geography teacher with an MA in South Asian studies, so I definitely had the academic background and knowledge to be a travel writer, but I did have to develop my writing style as a blog audience is different to an academic one. This was my biggest challenge.
As a teacher at the time of starting out, it meant that I had a little revenue to invest in a few online courses and a website designer. This really helped me to get going.
What is the revenue model for the blog?
My current income is predominantly from Adsense and AWIN. Through AWIN, I am affiliated with main hotel and flight booking engines such as booking.com and expedia.com. This means that I can review hotels and earn commissions for people who book through my links. I am now also an affiliate of Viator, the TripAdvisor tour booking site, and so I can review tours and receive a commission from these also.
Adsense is very easy to set up and a good passive income. It basically just means that people can advertise in a space on your website and you earn money for click-throughs.
Personally, I started making money from my original blog about 18 months after it started. I remember getting excited telling my boyfriend that my blog had learned money. ‘How much?’ He asked, and I answered 10p! (That’s about 15c!) We laughed about it, but the point was I knew that as it had started to earn, it could earn more, and so I persevered. It has been a lot of hard work to get to the stage I am at now, but it has been 100% worth it.
The main tips that I would give are to learn how to monetize your blog straight away. Originally, I was just blogging as a hobby and not with money making in mind. I wasn’t writing for an income e.g. hotel reviews and tour reviews. If I had done this from the start, I would be earning a lot more than I am now! But, it is all a learning curve, don’t be discouraged if you don’t earn straight away.
I intend to produce eBooks and guides on Amazon as my next step for growing traffic and revenue.
What are some strategies you have used for building up the traffic?
To get initial traffic, I developed and grew main social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. i also added in Google+ (good for Search Engine Optimisation – being found on Google and other search engines such as Bing).
Once I had a decent Facebook page, I invested some money (small amounts around $20 a month) into advertising on Facebook to get more page likes and boosting posts for engagement. This has drastically grown my following in my target audience (you can define your audience with Facebook advertising) and therefore I would highly recommend it.
Pinterest has also been a great driver of traffic. I joined a few facebook groups on Pinterest for travel bloggers where we share each other’s pins. This has increased my traffic because Pinterest is now a search engine within itself.
My main tip would be to firm up your blog niche right from the start and then learn and implement Search Engine Optimisation immediately. Research your keywords (low competition and high traffic) before you write articles and then write with these keywords in mind. This will give you Google traffic, the biggest source of free traffic out there. I wish I had done this from the beginning.
Guest posting has worked well for me because it has given me backlinks from other people’s websites that have resulted in an increase in my Domain Authority on both blogs. It’s a brilliant way to get your name out there as a writer. Again, you can join Facebook groups on this, or just research blogs open to guest posts online.
How have you grown the email list?
I’ve recently set up my email marketing list with Aweber and I have 151 sign-ups. I have grown this by a link from Facebook and the website predominantly.
I intend to run a free Facebook giveaway to grow the list, as from what I have been reading lately, this can massively increase your newsletter sign-ups. Another mistake that I made as a first time blogger did not have an email list to sign up to straight away. I probably lost out on hundreds of sign-ups in the first 18 months when I didn’t have one!
How do you write great content that performs well?
I write well early in the mornings and often I need to feel inspired, which pretty much always happens when I’m traveling! I don’t travel full time though, I have a partner back int he UK where I spend about 50% of the year. We have set up a home office with Ikea furniture and big monitors and I’ve found that this has really helped me to work well at home.
I write mainly about places I am visiting at that time, and there is always something to recommend. If I don’t feel inspired, it feels forced and really shows up in my writing. I’m heading to Malta in March and Thailand in April this year, so this will provide plenty of great content for my blogs! I’m keeping my original blog going as well as my new niche blog because they both get traffic and make money, so why not!
I would recommend using the Coschedule headline analyzer to help you to get good headlines. It’s a free tool and will help your titles become more shareable on social media and therefore get more hits.
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced and obstacles you’ve overcome with your blog? If you had to start over, what would you do differently?
If I had to start over from scratch here’s a summary of what I would do differently:
- Invest in Facebook ads immediately.
- Research the key terms for SEO before writing articles.
- Monetise the blog immediately with affiliate marketing and Adsense.
- Brand from the beginning with a color scheme and texts that is recognizable and fits in with your mission.
- Get all your social media accounts inline with the same username.
Have you found anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
I found Emma Drew’s course ‘Turn your Dreams into Money’ really helpful. It taught me a lot about branding issues such as color palettes and logos.
My ambitious attitude meant that I never gave up, and this has been instrumental in my success as a blogger. Around two-thirds of new blogs fail after the first 6 months, simply because they got the drive and stamina to keep going and push past that tough bit. Never give up!
What’s your advice for bloggers who are just starting out?
If you are just starting out as a blogger, I would recommend attending conferences and reaching out to other people in the blogging community. People are so helpful and friendly, and you can learn from their mistakes rather than making your own!
Where can we go to learn more?