Now for the hard part: reviewing my business goals halfway through the year.
Although I do strongly believe in transparency, bringing it to the business arena is honestly a little bit uncomfortable.
I’m not going to share any super-specific financial numbers or “income reports”, because I think that’s nobody’s business but mine and my wife’s. However, I will try and be transparent about how the numbers fluctuate in terms of percentages.
Coffee Concierge Business Goals
- 3x Coffee Concierge revenue
- 66% of total business revenue from Coffee Concierge
- Update Coffee Hacks to its Second Edition and sell 100 copies
- 1 million website visitors
- 5,000 email subscribers, maintain >40% open rates
- 104 new posts published
- 10,000 YouTube subscribers
Other Business Goals
Revive searchandperch.com Launch benjiwalklet.com
Now, these are business goals I wrote out at the beginning of this year.
Ironically, the only two goals I’ve achieved halfway through the year are not related to Coffee Concierge, nor are they SMART.
The other interesting thing is that while I’m still focused on growing Coffee Concierge, I’ve been way more focused on growing Search and Perch this year.
I’m still fairly certain I don’t want to run a digital marketing agency for the rest of my life, but in the last year I’ve been able to figure out how to make it both more enjoyable and more manageable.
Because of this, my mindset has shifted from grow one business and ditch the other to grow two businesses and supplement one with the other (and vice versa).
Sure, there might be a point one day where I’m forced to choose which business to focus all of my time on, but I don’t think I’m anywhere close to this point yet.
And honestly, in hindsight, thinking I was at the point where I could commit the majority of my time to Coffee Concierge in 2016 was probably one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made as an entrepreneur to-date.
Yes, it was my highest revenue year ever (by a significant margin) for the site, but it still wasn’t enough to get me to leave Search and Perch (my “day job”) behind completely.
The end of 2016 also introduced changes in the Amazon Associates program that would significantly impact my earnings for Coffee Concierge.
I don’t need to go into the details of this, because it doesn’t really matter.
Don’t rely on a platform you don’t have control over
This was one of the earliest lessons I learned as an entrepreneur, courtesy of MJ Demarco. Yet, I was somehow still blinded by the warning until it actually impacted me.
Amazon changed their commission structure, and it was totally in their rights.
It was my fault for putting so many eggs in that basket and not diversifying my revenue streams enough.
So now I’m approaching almost a 2 year decline in traffic and earnings for this business.
The good news is that scaling Search and Perch is more straightforward and predictable, and because of this I can re-invest the profits back into Coffee Concierge.
And since time is an even more finite resource than money, my primary investment needs to be in people.
If I’m a solopreneur for the rest of my life, I can only go so far.
With talented people working alongside me though, my output can continue to not only grow, but also improve from a quality perspective.
There’s still time to meet a lot of the goals I’ve listed above for 2018.
But in the end, I think the most important thing is to not beat myself up if I don’t get there as soon as I had hoped.
Just gotta keep moving forward.