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I Thought So

PandaBeing the numbers junkie that I am, I keep close track of my earnings, and to a lesser degree my page views. I especially keep track of my Google earnings to get an indication if Panda is morphing into a kinder or meaner type of animal.

According to my numbers, somewhere around September 22nd, things changed. Actually, it could have been September 21st because I saw another record high day of Google earnings (in excess of $100), but the following day, my earnings dropped.

Following the high and the next day drop there was a balancing out of sorts. It’s hard for me to say exactly what was going on. What I did notice, however, was that my overall page views seemed to have dropped an average of  between 8 to 10%.

When I say overall page views dropped between  8-10%, I’m using the total page views across all my sites as shown in my StatCounter account. StatCounter isn’t the most accurate indicator but I’m able to view my numbers in one glance.Closer Look

Taking a Closer Look

When I look at Google and my search results, I really only pay attention to my 2 highest earning sites. As I checked my Google ranking for one of them, it still bounces between #1 and #2 in the search results for the major search term. As far as my second highest earning site, it still remains in the same position as it was prior to the algorithm tweak (even though I’ve not added new content to the site for 2 months).

Could it be a Hiccup?

Although my overall monthly AdSense earnings were a hair higher than last month’s (that’s good considering there was a holiday early on in the month), I’m not complaining. Last month my daily average was $59.37 and this month it’s $59.67. Like I said, just a hair higher.

I did a little roaming around the Internet to see if anyone else has noticed a change in page views/earnings and came across this post  on Web Pro News. It seems that Google launched an iteration of the Panda update last week.

What this Means Going ForwardFast Writer

For me, this means business as usual. I’ll continue writing for my various sites and force myself to finish working on my ebooks (I’ve not been very motivated in the book writing department). Having a few products to sell helps to offset Google Panda fluctuations.

If I were a newbie and just starting out right now, I’d immerse myself in learning about one freelance writing wile writing for upfront pay. I’d squeeze out some time to write a few residual articles and play around with creating my own blog or two.

Google has been making algorithm changes since the beginning of time (Google time). Some changes are big and some not so big. It’s the way of the Internet. If you have a good strategy, and follow your plan, you should fare pretty well.

{ 22 comments… add one }
  • cadebe October 2, 2011, 6:50 pm

    As always, thanks for the info Felicia. I have noticed changes in my page views as well, but couldn’t figure out why.

  • Michael October 2, 2011, 9:21 pm

    My traffic appears to be unaffected by this latest Google Panda iteration. Actually, my traffic has gone up slightly.

    I think your final sentiment is right. Things will forever be in flux online, but if you diversify and stick with it you can ride out the highs and lows and do well overall.

  • Vidya Sury, Freelance Writer & Blogger October 3, 2011, 3:57 am

    That’s good advice.

    As I’ve said earlier, Felicia…I enjoy what I do too much and consequently the book writing goals just keep shifting ahead. I doubt (at this moment) if I’ll actually stop taking on writing work and sit and focus on my books. But who knows, stranger things have happened. I do take stock every once in a while. I never imagined six years ago that this would be what I am doing for a living. Love it 🙂 But I will write those books….

    I enjoy reading your posts very much.

    • umair October 11, 2011, 11:22 am

      Hello vidya,

      I’m an Indian, and would like to know about the work you have been doing online. I have come across many scams and would like to advice me a legitimate WAH job including the one you are currently working.

  • Mandy October 3, 2011, 10:13 am

    You know I noticed it at the same time! Scary!

  • Tashana October 3, 2011, 1:14 pm

    So Felicia, in your opinion is writing for sites like Suite101 still worth it as far as residuals go?

    • Felicia October 4, 2011, 8:49 am

      Tashana, that’s a hard question to answer. For me personally, I’ve got 270 articles there and they earn a little income. Lately I’ve noticed my daily earnings have increased but they’re not at pre-Panda levels.

      I’ve not written there since May and have recently eked above the $200 a month mark. For me, it’s still worth it, even if I only write one article a month. $200 for writing one article isn’t so bad.

      My Suite articles have brought me job offers and opportunities that I might not have had if my articles weren’t there. Additionally, because I haven’t written for them in a while, the income is truly passive. So, to answer part of your question, it’s worth it for me.

      What it’s worth to other writers is something that each individual writer must decide. If you’re looking for big bucks, you’ll have to put in a lot of effort (and I mean a lot of effort). If you’re willing to put in the effort, then maybe it’s worth it. Keep in mind, you can exert similar effort and build your own sites.

      You have to test the waters to see what works for you.

  • cashflowmantra October 3, 2011, 10:53 pm

    I haven’t noticed a large change in views. My earnings fluctuate so much that it is hard to identify any trend anyway.

    • Felicia October 4, 2011, 8:56 am

      The change in views were not drastic, but just enough for me to notice that something was going on. Some sites remained the same while others were affected a bit more.

  • Living in Washington DC October 4, 2011, 3:39 pm

    I noticed the change in earnings at the beginning of September. The number of visitors to my website had also dropped. However, things went back to normal at the end of the month. Whew!

    – Di

  • Maria (Work at Home Mom) October 5, 2011, 5:55 am


    I do not keep track of my earnings, page views or percentages as carefully as you do so am often unaware of any Google changes until I see other bloggers talking about them.

    In fact, I often just check accounts once a week or less and keep most of my online time focused on writing and other constructive tasks.

    Does watching things very closely make a difference in performance if you don’t plant to change the type, quality or quantity of what you’re writing just based on Google’s whims?

    • Felicia October 5, 2011, 6:57 am

      Hi Maria,

      I’ll choose not to take any sort of offense as I read and re-read your comment. The problem with reading comments is that I’m unable to see your facial expressions nor hear the tone of your voice. I’m sure this comment was written with a gentle tone and a quizzical smile (at least I’ll choose to receive it that way).

      I’m of the analytical personality type and like to keep track of the return on my efforts. As I’ve mentioned here before, what gets measured gets managed.

      As far as spending my time online with more “focused and constructive tasks,” I’m on the computer daily. Between doing work, playing around and communicating with family and friends (yes, I’m of the old school…I send emails instead of IM’s and Facebook updates), it takes only seconds to check and track my stats.

      Google is one source of my income but not my only source. We both know that we wouldn’t make a dime online if we sat and watched Google all day without making plans and implementing alternative ways of making money. Several times on this blog I’ve quoted the Serenity Prayer. In other words, I change what I can, accept what I can’t change and learn the difference between what I can change and can’t. I can change myself, but I can’t change Google (thus I observe them).

      My children are older and I have the luxury of being able to manage my own time better. If I had several young children at home, I wouldn’t be able to find time to get online. However, everyone has to manage their online and offline time as they see fit.

      My intent here at NJFM is to share my experiences and offer encouragement to other writers. We all take different routes to achieving our financial goals.

  • Ken Muise October 5, 2011, 11:01 am

    Constructive online activities? I’m currently taking an online origami course…does that count? Hi, Felicia…I’m surprised that I have not received devilish cackles over the implosion of the Red Sox in September. I’m just now getting over it.

    • Felicia October 6, 2011, 6:56 am

      Ken, I’ve learned not to kick a man when he’s down (at least a man that you admire…some folks you wait until they’re down and then you do the happy dance all over ‘em).

      My husband is on an emotional roller coaster. I wish I could thank Granderson personally (who I affectionately call The Cookie Jar Thief), for those amazing catches in the last game. He’s responsible for lifting the mood in the Williams household.

      I’m sorta bummed that the Red Sox didn’t make it (don’t tell my husband). There’s something about the Bo Sox/Yanks rivalry that produces such strong electrical current. Fans come alive when those two teams play. Oh well, there’s always next year.

      Time for football (although we’re not too hopeful about the Giants this year).

  • Ken Muise October 6, 2011, 10:52 am


    I agree. Now all I have to live for is Mr. Brady and the Nearly Unstoppable Patriots every week AND rooting for the Detroit!

    On a blogging note: I bought a blog (micro niche) on Flippa the other day. The lady who sold it to me also sent along a cool back link strategy (perfectly legit and not spammy). Basically, you build about 10 backlinks per day.

    The site is already getting clicks on ads and I am pretty excited about it. Now, I have to implement that linking strategy with my others and see how it does.

    Have you spent anytime on Flippa? Pretty strange and exciting stuff going on over there.

    • Ken Muise October 6, 2011, 10:54 am

      PS…yeah, Eli would scare me if I had to root for a team with him at the QB Position.

      Granderson made what may be the catch of the season…

      • Ken Muise October 6, 2011, 11:40 am


        Speaking on the subject of this post. I am seeing an increase in traffic to Blogging Dudes and another of my sites. I’m not at NJFM levels but there’s a definite rise in the last week.

        • Felicia October 7, 2011, 9:19 am

          Ken, with your tenacity, quality content and posting frequency, I wouldn’t expect anything else but increased traffic to your sites. Way to go!

      • Felicia October 7, 2011, 9:18 am

        Too bad the Yanks couldn’t pull it out last night. I’ve got a grumpy hubby. 🙁

        • Ken Muise October 7, 2011, 11:23 am

          I know how that is. When the Pats lost to the Giants in the SB my wife actually warned the kids not to talk to me. LOL

    • Felicia October 7, 2011, 9:18 am

      Haven’t spent time on Flippa. I’ll have to check it out.

  • Scott October 24, 2011, 11:51 am

    I may be benefiting from the changes. My blog seems to be rising in the ranks of Google

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