One of the challenges that a full time blogger must be willing to undertake is the uncertainties and strong dependancy of earnings based on Google’s traffic and search rankings. A change in Google search algorithm could drastically bring down traffic earnings – and this uncertainty is one of the main factors that prevented me from being a full time blogger.
Within this past month, I was a bit puzzled when I noticed a drop in my search engine traffic from sources of organic traffic delivered by Google. Upon checking around the net, I realized that many blogs have reported a significant drop in earnings after Google introduced its new search algorithm, also known as Google Panda.
Blogs that are largely affected are those who go round scrapping content from other blogs. While this has been an ongoing issue that many bloggers have to deal with (I’ve had my original content scrapped many times over)- I am glad that finally Google is finding a way to remove this culprits from the search results.
Even though there is a slight drop in search results, I do notice that Google is delivering visitors who are seaching for specific content on the site- there are certain content that I write in depth about that these posts are finally getting traffic views. So Google is effectively linking the visitors towards the content that they are really looking for.
Some full time bloggers also engage in black-hat or grey-hat methods- that are dishonest and consist of copying and reproducing original content. They even run seminars or have online ebook teaching other aspirants how to do it. Else, it is seldom that a full time blogger can make money blogging full time- without a bit of black hat or applying some dishonest tricks. With this new implementation, the ‘law’ had finally caught up with them.
With this new ruling, a number of ‘tips’ or tricks that sites offered on how to trick Google would no longer work or be effective.
Unfortunately, many innocent blogs/sites were also wrongly labeled as farm links or spam sites by Google. These are full time bloggers who make honest living churning out post after post of original and useful content. There is so much of impermance going on in this world but a full time blogger seems to need to constantly ride on the wave of uncertainties dictate by unknown laws of Google-land.
Therefore, if you are considering to quit your day job to blog full time, do think it over seriously before you decide to do so. I’ve been blogging for many years and have seen many uncertainties and changes that affected those whose ricebowls depends on blogs. Unless you have enough savings to last you for months and you have set a specific time frame to slought it out.
If you have commitments, it’s best to keep a day time job and blog part time.
Also, don’t get discouraged when you do not see results initially. It takes a while for your content to get indexed by the search engine, specially if many other sites also contained similar content as yours. For example, I am less active now in blogging compared to 2008/2009 when I hold a paycut job (where I have more mental energy to blog after work). But during that entire duration, I did not see much increase in blog earnings. However, a year later, the long winded posts that I’ve written are receiving organic traffic.
Therefore blogging is very much like an investment- you would not see results initially- which does not mean you should be discouraged. Content would always be king and if you have given time and your heart to write original and useful content, eventually it would start to attract organic traffic. So, don’t cancel your account or discontinued your hosting if you cannot break even at first- so long as you have your own voice and unique style, and you do not go around stealing others content, eventually you would see results 🙂