This year on Canadian Budget Binder has been one of the best years to date and for that I want to start this post with a huge thanks to all the fans. The highlight of my year on the blog has been networking with so many personal finance bloggers and getting to know more fans through social media outlets.
As you all know it’s been a super busy year for the CBB as we welcomed our baby boy into the family and I’ve worked my butt off to shift my career to new heights. With that came some changes to the blog where I had to decrease my everyday blog posts to a few each week.
I take blogging seriously and when I write I spend hours on each blog post. I was worried that I might see many of you leave but to my surprise the blog kept going strong and my fans supported me along the way. I can’t tell you how much that support means to me. Thank-you!
If you are a fan who has sent in a question that I’ve replied to in the form of a blog post, thank-you. I appreciate all the fan questions and although I can’t answer them all in the form of a blog post I do my best to email each of you back. Please continue to send me in your questions via my contact form on the home page or via email. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you want to share your success stories on CBB by writing your own blog post by all means get in touch with me. I love sharing educational posts whether they have happy endings or not. Learning not to make the same mistakes sometimes means sharing your mistakes with others so they don’t make them too! Same goes for success but we all want to create happy endings. 🙂
Let’s get to the meat of this post now where I share with you everything that’s happened in 2014 for CBB.
The Making a Difference feature which I post in The Saturday Weekend Review has been so successful the past two years as I’ve shared so many wonderful blogs with my fans. I hope to connect with more personal finance bloggers to network with them in 2015.
Making A Difference was started as my way of giving back to the personal finance community with no expectations but to share. Essentially the owner of the blog shares a bit about the blog, themselves and how they plan to make a difference to the fans with their blog. If you are a personal finance blogger and have not participated please contact me today for details.
I’ve always been a blogger who was active in his blogging community and with that bonding I have had the opportunity to chat with many of you and get to know you. You’ve taught me many things and I hope that in 2014 you were able to take something special away from CBB which I work so hard on every day even when I know I should be sleeping.
I don’t normally do one of these update posts at the end of the year but I thought this year since the blog has grown so much that I would take the time to share with all of you how well CBB has done over the course of the year.
In 2014 we had over 262,471 unique visitors to CBB with almost 600,000 page views which is fascinating to me because I never in my wildest dreams expected the success CBB has achieved. The blog has seen our subscribers grow into the thousands and I hope to see this number grow even higher in 2015.
Not subscribed yet? Enter your email on the blog home page where is says “Subscribe by Email“, verify that you opted to subscribe when you receive your first email from CBB and you are good to go! You will get an email every time I blog which is normally a few times a week.
I remember when I started the blog and was super excited to see 10 people read the blog. Building a community takes time and effort and being a blogger that is present is very important to me because I want to know my fans.
CBB was created in 2012 to document our budgeting journey and to be honest I never thought anyone would care to read about it. In 2015 CBB will be starting its fourth year and even though in 2014 I had to cut back posting the blog has still performed the best it ever has.
In 2014 I was able to share 303 new blog posts with all of you with a grand total of 1006 blog posts on CBB since the blog started in 2012. Amazing! I was fortunate to have brilliant contribution posts on the blog at the end of 2014 from personal finance bloggers to help out as our son was born which took me away from the blog for days on end.
Thank-you to all the fans and personal finance bloggers who contributed to CBB in 2014. A big shout-out to Katrina who has been very busy with her family and new job and even though she isn’t posting as much as she has in the past she is still with CBB but on an as-needed basis. Katrina has added so much value to CBB and I appreciate that.
Nicola our resident home chef, what can I say except wow! You have shared so many recipes on CBB over the years and you continue to make us drool with your skills in the kitchen by creating easy frugal recipes.
The Grocery Game Challenge is still thriving and I hope to get more fans involved with taking control of their grocery budget. The success of the GGC belongs to the fans especially those who participate because these fans want more than anything to cut grocery costs in their budget so they can focus on saving money on other areas of their budget. We all know eating costs lots of money so if you are spending far too much on food… let’s talk!
Our Family Budget
Now that 2015 is upon us we have a clean slate to work with which means we get to write each chapter of our lives from new. I’ve been working on our budget and net worth update for December and will be sharing our exciting end-of-year numbers with all of you in the next week.
I have also been working on updating our budget to include a running total of our projected expenses which has been an ongoing monthly goal of mine which I saved until the last-minute. It wasn’t a smart idea to wait but with limited time in 2014 I wasn’t able to get around to updating our budget.
I’m hoping to provide this budget as part of my Free Money Saving Tools for those of you that want to have a running total of projected expenses as soon as I can. I’d like to test this budget for the year so I can make any changes as they arise before I present it to all of you.
In the meantime you can add your projected expenses categories each month manually to get a running total unless you have excel skills to get running totals.
Top Stats for CBB 2014
So, you want to know what happened behind the scenes here at CBB in 2014? Well, I’m going to share with you some of the stats you don’t get to see but you should because you are all a part of this success.
I’m always open to suggestions on improving CBB, topic ideas or if you want to share content via awesome deals that you’ve found. Get in touch with me!
I work very hard on my blog posts and when someone shares a comment it really makes me feel happy inside knowing that someone wants to add their thoughts. In 2014 there were 5 CBB fans who consistently come back each day to CBB to comment on blog posts.
These ladies have been fans of CBB for many years now and I feel like I’ve gotten to know them so well even though we’ve never met. Huge round of applause for sharing your thoughts on CBB in 2014 which brought you into the top spots.
- Christine 356 comments
- Mary 165 comments
- Angela 87 comments
- Jen 69 comments
- Juanita 68 comments
TOP SEARCH TERM
I remember when I would check my end of year stats that I used to be bummed out that not many people searched for Canadian Budget Binder on the web. Now, I’m proud to say that ‘Canadian Budget Binder‘ was the top search term for 2014 with 584 hits that landed people on CBB. The best part is that CBB has been recognized by Google and other search engines which put us on the map! 🙂
BUSIEST DAY IN 2014
By far the busiest day on CBB was when JMoney shared my post about being House Poor on Rockstar Finance which was then picked up by Lifehacker. This day the blog had almost 5000 views sitting at 4753 hits for the day. Thanks JMoney for your continued support!
TOP COMMENTED POST
The top commented post in 2014 goes to How we became mortgage free in 5 years. I didn’t think it would gain as much interest as it did but it seems to be a hot spot with many people and their budgets.
The mortgage for many is the biggest expense of the budget and I’m sure I would be just as intrigued to find out how someone in their 30’s was able to pay off the mortgage so fast so I could apply some of those tips.
Aside from food, mortgage/rent for all of us are the top two categories in the budget and two areas I like to focus on here at CBB apart from teaching my fans how to use a budget.
TOP REFERRING SOCIAL MEDIA SITES
In the first years Facebook used to be the most referring social media outlet but with so many changes they no longer hold top spot. In order to gain more exposure on Facebook fans need to Like, Share and Comment and this seems to have diminished over the past year unfortunately.
I’m hoping to encourage my fans on Facebook to share, share, share to help CBB grow. On the other hand CBB Facebook page is always bustling with fans chatting away day and night which I am thrilled about.
The “What’s For Dinner?” nightly post is one my favourite where we all get together to talk about frugal food, recipes, and all things related to life. It’s a great outlet for my fans to chat and get to know one another. Many friendships have formed just from the CBB Facebook page.
If you are a recipe fanatic like I am check out my Free Recipe Depot Facebook page that I created in 2014 which has over 2600 fans and growing who love to eat!
I’ve seen a huge rise in traffic from Twitter over the course of the year with over 3700 followers. A huge thanks to all the PF Bloggers that Tweet CBB posts. I know who all of you are and I thank-you from the bottom of my heart for your support. It’s not easy competing in the blogging world but having some amazing bloggers by your side counts for something. Follow me on Twitter if you have an account and I’ll follow you back!
Google Plus has seen a steady rise in traffic although I don’t put too much effort into it as of yet. With over 76,000 views and hundreds of followers I’m excited to see how I can improve my visibility. I’m hoping in 2015 to familiarize myself more with this social media outlet so I can get myself into the loop.
On the odd occasion I will see a spike in traffic because one of my posts have been tossed around Reddit or Stumble Upon which is great. There is nothing more exciting to a blogger than to open up their dashboard to see thousands of views on a post that was shared many times. Thanks to anyone who has shared!
So what social media takes top spot for CBB 2014? Pinterest! All of you that PIN on Pinterest have shared so many of my posts and drive the most traffic to CBB. A huge Thank-you to all of my fans who follow me on Pinterest. Pinterest is a great way to learn how to do just about anything from people all over the world. Follow me on Pinterest and you will see just how amazing Pinterest can be! Thanks to all of you who Pin my posts!
TOP BUSIEST BLOG POSTS
- Grocery Game Rules
- Scanning Code of Practice: SCOP in Canada Did you know?
- How much should my grocery budget be?
- How I paid off my OSAP loan fast
- Dollar Store home pregnancy tests: Do they work?
- Canadian Law: Jury duty in Canada can take a toll on your budget
- How we reduced our grocery budget from $1100 to $600 in 6 months
- MPAC assessment and the value of my house
- Haggling the best deal with your communication company
- How to price garage sale items
TOP SHARED RECIPE
The most shared recipe on social media was Easy Chicken Curry in a Hurry that Nicola created for those who love Indian inspired meals. The recipe has been shared hundreds of time and continues to spread daily on Pinterest.
Nicola is one heck of an amazing home chef so watch out for all of her recipes being shared here in 2015. If you want to check out all the recipe on CBB we’ve created a handy Free Recipe Index where you can print our recipes and save them for future use.
TOP BUSIEST PAGES
- The Grocery Game Challenge Rules – The Grocery Game Challenge 2015 is starting NOW! Join today!
- The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide – Everything you need to know about grocery shopping in Canada!
- Free Money Saving Tools– Free budgets and lists you can download and print!
- The Free Recipe Index– Free frugal recipes to save you money!
- Handy Canadian Government websites– Look no further for those hard to find government websites. (If you see any I’ve missed that should be on the list let me know!)
CBB FREE BUDGET EXCEL SPREADSHEET
I’m thrilled to report back that my Free Money Saving Tools continues to help thousands of people around the world with over 6000 downloads in 2014. What was exciting to see was how many times my Free Budget Spreadsheet was downloaded and in 2014 the total was 1532 times. I hope everyone who uses the budget is having a blast taking care of their finances like we do with it.
What’s in store for CBB in 2015?
Well, I’m likely going to keep blogging as much as I can but there may be weeks where I can’t stick to my weekly schedule which is currently, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. I may have to cut one post out but we will see how it goes. I’m also hoping to focus more on food, budgets, debt, relationships and mortgages in 2015 all areas that seem very important to CBB fans.
What were some of your favourite blogs posts from 2014? What did you learn from CBB in 2014 and what would you like to see for CBB in 2015?
I wish all of you a Happy New Year and look forward to spending time with you on CBB in 2015!
All the best,