What I Learned Blogging in 2018 | 3 Big Mistakes and 3 Big Wins

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What I Learned Blogging in 2018 Header

Happy New Year’s Eve! I love this time of year because it’s such a great time to look on the past year and really reflect how the year went. I learned a lot this year from blogging, and I’d love to share with you my wins and losses.

First, the bad news.


The 3 Biggest Mistakes I Made This Year

Wrong WayI don’t worry too much about mistakes because to me they are just steping stones. You learn by making mistakes and you are able to go a slightly different direction. You keep doing that and honing in on exactly what you are trying to accomplish. Although, i don’t think that path is every complete.

The bad part about making mistakes is that they can sometimes be costly. I sure learned that lesson! Here are the

1. I didn’t end network marketing even though it wasn’t working out for me. This was my costliest mistake. I spent a lot of money on network marketing, and it didn’t net me much. I spent money on:

  • Products ($100 + a month)
  • Business cards
  • A website
  • Branded images

This was costly. I do have some upsides to this though:

  • I actually really like the products. I just don’t buy them AS often.
  • Going into network marketing made me get back into affiliate marketing, which is what I TRULY enjoy.

I think the 2nd point is the best point. Without going into network marketing, I wouldn’t have gotten back into affiliate marketing. Because I started writing about the products on my site. My other site. Which brings me to my next mistake. (By the way, if it ever makes sense in the future, I would get back to network marketing with the company I was with.)

2. I worked hard on my first site, and now I have to close it down. This one is tough. I started my other website, Pick Plants, as a directory for plant-based information. It grew from there and I started reviewing my network marketing products. I worked really hard on that site, but since I no longer do network marketing and I’m no longer plant-based (another story for another time), there’s really no purpose for that site.

It’s a bummer to spend so much time and energy on something and then to have to close up shop. But it’s OK. I learned a lot from it. And it actually led me into making this site. Now I can focus all my energy on making this the best website it can be.

3. I didn’t start to fully put in 100% on this site until October. Because I was working on my other site, this site took a backseat. I finally got some focus in October 2018. These are the stepping stones that I took, but if I would have been working on it as hard as I am now for the entire year, it would have grown so much more.

But, that’s what 2019 is for! 🙂

I’m sure I made many more mistakes, but these were the two big ones! Now, let’s get into some wins.


The 3 Main Ways That I Won in 2018

SuccessI feel like I had a slow start to this year. Part of the reason is because I was still working the first half of the year. Secondly because of that site I mentioned above that I was working on that is going to be shut down. But I still feel like I won in some areas.

1. I was able to quit my “real” job and focus all my energy on affiliate marketing. This is a big win because ever since I stopped working in June, I have been able to fully put all of my attention on affilaite marketing. I get up between 5 and 5:30 every day, and I work my butt off writing content, making Pinterest pins, etc. (I like getting up early. It’s not a requirement. I also squeeze in exercise, and getting my kids off to school in the mornings.)

2. I got an email autoresponder. “The money is in the list.”, as they say. I finally chose an email autoresponder (I went with ConvertKit. More details about it later after I’m more experienced with it!) Now it’s time to really start rocking and rolling. I will be creating even more content for my email subscribers!

3. I dove head-first into Pinterest. Pinterest is an awesome source of traffic. I didn’t know that though until November 2018. But I created a new profile for this blog (follow me here!), I went through Pinterest Traffic Avalanche training and I also signed up with Tailwind.

I went from no followers, monthly engagements or monthly viewers (new account, remember!) to this today (all in just a little over a month):

Pinterest DecemberI have 378 followers as of today, December 31, 2018. These aren’t the stats that matter though. What matters is getting click throughs to my site, and that’s starting to happen with Pinterest.

I am going to focus even MORE effort on getting traffic from Pinterest in 2019. I can’t wait. It’s going to be fun! (Oh yea, I also LOVE creating pins in Canva. It truly IS fun!)


What’s Ahead in 2019

2019I have so many things swirling in my brain for 2019! Pinterest! Email marketing! Blogging! I am going to be adding some of the content from my old site onto this site. That content is more about health and food-related products.

It’s a little different than what I currently have, but I think health is SO important when you’re trying to build an online business. You can’t successfully run a business and be unhealthy. It’s not going to work. So we’re going to dive into that a bit more.

The main thing I want to do is connect with more readers, find out ways to help you all. My goal is to have every mom who wants to stay home with her kids to be able to do so with blogging and affiliate marketing. I know what it’s like to leave your kids at a daycare while you go into some soul-sucking job.

At the same time, it’s also good to have something to focus on that’s not just all about your kids. I love writing on this blog because it’s something that I enjoy and am passionate about. I don’t want to be JUST a mom and JUST a wife. Know what I mean? If you feel the same way, then you’re in the right place. 😉


I’m really looking forward to 2019! It’s going to be a great year! What are YOUR goals? In what ways did you win and lose in 2018? Let me know in the comments below.


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About the Author Christina Piccoli

Christina loves petting cats. She loves writing and reading. She tries to stay away from tortilla chips. She's usually unsuccessful. Read more about her and this site on her About Me page.

  • Danette says:

    When I read about your mistakes, I feel for you. That’s hard. But you have such a great attitude in learning from them and moving forward with more insight, experience, and wisdom. 

    Then to read about your wins, it makes the mistakes seem a lot smaller. Congratulations on coming home for good!

    Pinterest Traffic Avalanche really caught my eye. So I clicked on that and bookmarked your review. Definitely something I want to come back to! Thanks!!

    • Christina Piccoli says:

      Thanks for reading and for your thoughtful and kind words. I appreciate it! 

      Pinterest Traffic Avalanche is a great program and is really helping my Pinterest grow quickly. 

  • Henry says:

    Ciao Christina Piccoli! Happy New Year! This is a very useful post! I greatly appreciate you have put this article together. By doing this, not only you learn from your experience, but we also benefit! Thank you very much!

    Network marketing has also seemed attractive to me but I have been hesitating if giving it a full try! Network marketing doesn’t seem to fit my personality!

    It’s good you have already set up your email marketing strategies with your autoresponder. And Pinterest is so good at driving traffic! And I really must say congrats that you were able to quit your job! Making a balance 2018 was a great year for you!

    • Christina Piccoli says:

      Ciao! I’ve seen people do very, very well in network marketing. And they really work their tails off! Affiliate marketing suits my personality better, but network marketing is definitely interesting and can be really exciting if you can get that ball rolling.

  • julienne murekatete says:

    Thank you for sharing with us your experience in blogging 2018.You have done a lot of about your business and I am really proud of you.

    You have made a great decision of quitting your real job to focus on your affiliate marketing.You are so courageous.

    I wish you great success in 2019 and I know you will make it

  • Koda says:

    Insightful article! Unfortunately, I know the pain of two of these. I also had to abandon a site because it wasn’t working for me, and I invested a LOT of time and sweat into it. It’s hard to admit you’ve taken a detour and must now correct and cut your losses. It really is difficult. Like you, though, I learned a lot from my 1st site, so it wasn’t for nothing! The second thing we have in common is that I had waited, but eventually started investing 100% into a site that actually was a better fit for me. I’m glad you found your blogging bearings! Congrats, it’s a big feat. Best of luck to you blogging in the future. I know you will have some extraordinary content to share! Also, a happy new year to you!  ( : 

    • Christina Piccoli says:

      It sounds like you really get where I’m coming from. Especially with that site I need to let go. I still haven’t bitten the bullet and cleaned up my social media and all the things that are attached to it. UGH. It’s hard to face! 

      Best of luck to you too in 2019! I wish you lots of success, health and happiness!

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