Blogging

How Many Blogs Are too Many for One Person to Handle?

Hello, my name is Luciano and I am a workaholic: I own and operate way too many blogs. More than any sane person should. But I am finally starting to accept and understand that too much is too much. There’s a limited number of hours in a day, and a limited amount of work my body can perform before I end up on the ceiling trying to eat the light bulb… I have to admit it: I am working on way too many blogs, which is neither healthy, nor a good idea.

A combination of things resulted in me owning way too many blogs (I will share the jaw dropping numbers below, so stick with me!) The most important is the fact that I, every so often, have the impression that I came up with the million dollar idea. Best in the world. Smartest guy ever. Without prior research or with just little research, based on my gut feeling and a bit of megalomania, I jump head first into launching yet another blog that I actually know, somewhere deep inside, that I don’t have the time to work on.

The second reason is a saying that you hear often: don’t keep all your eggs in one basket. Aka don’t have a single blog that allows you to live your life – have more! And while that might be true, I just took things way too far.

Probably I am not the only one in this situation. And today I am going to share some numbers with you, as well as tell you why you shouldn’t have too many active blogs (if you are working on them all by yourself, like myself). Because, as you will see, spreading yourself too thin will not give you any benefits, on the contrary!

So… how many blogs do I have and why do I think it’s too many?

Before the end of 2018, the truth is that I never counted them. I did think that I had 17 blogs and that was a lot. Apparently, I was completely wrong. I actually had, at the end of 2018… 32 blogs. Out of these, some never saw a new post in 2018, but a lot did.

26, to be precise. Twenty-freakin-six blogs! That is insane!

But the insanity won’t stop here! I did some extra counting and I found out that in 2018 I had published 938 articles. This means 78 per month or 2.6 articles per day. Having in mind that my blogs are my full time work and the fact that I rarely write on Saturdays and Sundays, the number of daily articles are pretty much normal for somebody doing this full time (aren’t they?). Especially since many of them are shorter articles and I rarely write over 1,200 words a piece.

But I did more number crunching and I found out that despite me being quite productive, many of them were nothing but time wasted. They served absolutely no purpose. Fortunately, it was not a lot of them: 31 out of the 938. And by “useless” I mean articles that were published on blogs with no traffic, no future and no monetization. These articles will, most likely, never make me a single cent and I didn’t get any pleasure from writing them either. Useless.

Back to the 26 “active” blogs that I have (I can’t really consider them active, having in mind that in some I only published articles once or twice during the entire year). Just 20 of these blogs actually make money. Which is still pretty good, having in mind that I am a single human being doing everything from research, content writing, link building, answering emails and everything in between. (Told you I am a workaholic!)

BUT… the truth is that out of the 20 blogs that made money in 2018, 8 of them made under $100. The “record holder” is a blog that earned $5 in 2018. Not per day. Not per month. Per year!

This leaves me with 12 blogs that made over $100 in 2018. Well… surprisingly or not, 6 of them made less than $1,000 throughout the year. These are spread out pretty evenly: I have a couple just over $100, a couple close to the top and the rest scattered around the middle. And even though that might sound like a not so bad amount, it actually is if you’re living off your blogging income alone: it’s actually an average of $54 per month generated by each of these 6 blogs.

This leaves me with just 6 of my 32 blogs actually making some decent money. Out of these, one made enough for me to live comfortably (but without bathing in milk and eating gold nuggets for breakfast), while another would’ve also allowed me to live, but very frugally (remember, I live in an Eastern-European country where the cost of living is extremely low compared to the US).

The income from all the other 18 blogs that generated some money in 2018 was lower than the amount generated by my top two money-makers. And that did help me put things into better perspective.

Yes, not having all your eggs in the same basket is great – I agree with that. I learned this the hard way back in 2014 when my main blog back then was banned by AdSense for an image that they labeled as adult (which was not, even though that particular photo of Jenny McCarthy wasn’t the most child-friendly either… but still safe for work!). Either way, I tried to appeal, but it was all in vain. Overnight, I had lost half my income and I was terrified.

Hence holding my eggs in multiple baskets today.

But I took things too far and the truth is that it is not profitable, healthy or smart.

I know, there are many people who still struggle to make the $100 per month… but they are probably just starting up and they know very little about blogging and monetizing it. I am in this game for over 10 years now and things are different. And the most important part is that too much is too much.

I simply can’t handle having 32 blogs. I simply can’t manage my 20 money making blogs, not even the 12 that made a minimum of $100 last year… unless I do it like I did it until now: work way harder than I should, rarely see my family, always have headaches and back aches and feel tired all the time and only managing to build up mediocre blogs to say the very least.

And that is not good. Mediocre might’ve worked until now, but both Google and the audience want more. You can’t just rush through with the content creation and throw in a few articles, then get rich and live on a beach in Thailand drinking coconut water and staring at the waves all day long. Hell, I wasn’t able to do this when everybody was, so I’m definitely not going to be able to do it now!

What to do when you have too many blogs on your hands?

The first thing that you have to do is accept the ugly truth: you simply can’t operate so many blogs by yourself. And you don’t have to be writing on 26 different ones, 3 articles each day, in order to conclude that you’re doing too much. No, I honestly think that anything that’s over 5 is way too much even for workaholics like myself. And if you’re just starting, definitely stick to your one blog for at least one year!

The second thing that you have to do is cut off the dead weight. In my case, this is extremely difficult because I love most of the blogs that I started and I truly believe that, if I had enough time to invest in producing content and promote the blogs, they would’ve been extremely profitable. Most of them are in various niches that I enjoy and I always end up creating lists and cutting off one here and one there… to still end up with way too many.

But there’s no other option than consider your blogs a business because this is what they are (unless it’s really a passion project, in which case you don’t need a gazillion blogs anyway…)

What I did was look at the blogs that made the most money in 2018 and listed the top 10. Then, I looked at the blogs that were left and selected the ones that I believed could be profitable if focused on (or were really something that I wanted to do – like this blog you’re reading now). Then I did some more trimming until all I had was 10 blogs.

But 10 is still way too much: my goal was to be left with 5 blogs. This is, as I said, manageable in my opinion, especially since a few of those that I own could still do pretty well with just 1 to 4 new articles published per month. Since I am doing this full time, it wouldn’t be a real problem.

But choosing 5, when starting to cut down from 32 was impossible. I simply couldn’t do it. I did the math, I went on the emotional lane, I took time away from this and came back, I did everything I could, but it was impossible to only leave 5 blogs to focus on in 2019. Instead, I ended up with 7.

Seven blogs to write on and manage and do everything, like I did until now, is definitely a lot easier than 32 or 26 and a huge improvement overall.

Finally, I decided to sell one of the blogs. It was my second best money maker and actually the first ever blog that I launched back in 2008. It was a mammoth of a blog of very high authority, but it was consuming so much time and I so much didn’t like to do it anymore. So I decided that, instead of letting it die just to still have it on my portfolio for the good memories, it’s best to sell it. You can’t do business with your heart. We’ll talk about the sale and everything in a future article, too.

Another potential solution when you have your hands full: outsourcing

Of course, you were probably screaming at the screen since reading about my crazy numbers: outsource the content creation, you peasant! Get a VA to help take some load off your hands! Stop doing everything yourself!

And I do see the truth in that and it is something that I honestly considered and still am considering. But there are a few problems with outsourcing and the types of websites that I run: the blogs that make money need a specific type of article creation process that most people taking on a job would not want to do or would find it extremely difficult to do it. Then, the blogs that would follow a more traditional approach regarding content writing don’t make enough for me to afford a writer. And I am, at this point, not sure that hiring one and running on a loss for a few months would turn things around – I actually believe it won’t.

So I am stuck, maybe because I am playing it way too safe from a business point of view, having to do it all alone. This is how I’ve been doing it for years and each time I tried getting a writer, for the money that I was able to offer, nothing good happened: I still ended up with a loss and the articles I received were crap.

But sure, if you have your hands full like I do and outsourcing is an option for you, definitely go that route. This could actually scale your business and make it a lot easier for you to increase your profits, despite increasing the costs. Even I might give it a try – I have a scenario where I will try it for a couple of months to see how it goes… but I am not yet ready to give it a try as there are other things to focus on right now.

Still, I am on the right track and I am extremely happy about that. I was heading towards insanity, always overloaded with work and projects and half-finished articles. I was stressed, I was unhappy, I was tired all the time and grumpy. All these despite the fact that 2018 was one of my best years in terms of revenue and despite the fact that it made absolutely no sense to focus on so many projects that didn’t work, ignoring the ones that actually did.

This was actually the revelation that triggered the creation of all the statistics and numbers that I shared above: wouldn’t it be a lot more profitable to focus on what works and milk that cow for as long as I can instead of trying all sorts of things that will probably not work? (And actually they DID NOT work!)

And even so, I would be definitely not keeping all my eggs in one basket. 5 baskets would’ve been certainly enough to being with. I ended up with 7, which might prove like a lot to handle… but for somebody who comes from trying to juggle with 26, it will probably seem like child’s play. And I might even have time to see my child play and enjoy life a bit more.

In the end, I will still work hard. But I will work smart, which is always the key. It’s always quality over quantity and simply looking at my numbers from last year proves that the saying is right.

I just have too many blogs and if you are in a similar situation, just do what I did: take a step back, look at the numbers, look at the prospects and find a solution. Otherwise, you will burn out and fail and feel miserable all the time, even though you should only have reasons to be happy. And “too many blogs” doesn’t have to be 20. Or 10. It can be 5, it can be 2. That’s for you and you alone to decide. But don’t lie to yourself: that won’t get you anywhere!

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