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Top Articles and My Goals Progress #11

Every week I read dozens of articles. To be honest, a lot of the personal finance articles out there are pretty crappy, but some of them can be quite eye-opening! Don’t worry, I share only the awesome ones with you. Browse the articles below, but be sure to come back and look at my site progress from the past 11 weeks.

Top 5 Articles of the Week

Again, last week was a pretty decent one for articles. I learned a lot! If you’d like to learn more as well, then have a gander at the posts below. Enjoy!

My Version of Financial Independence as a 17 Year Old – by Root of Good – This was a pretty cool post. Justin, now financially independent, scrounged up a retirement plan that he conjured up when he was 17 years old. Much of it is laughable, but now that he’s officially retired by age 33, I guess no one’s really laughing.

How I Started Saving Money – By Accident – by One Cent at a Time – This article was actually pretty awesome. The writer resolved to lose weight, and while he was changing his diet he noticed that his bank account was filling up at the same time! Check it out, it’s worth the read.

Years to financial freedomThe Rise of Student Debt and Its Toxic Effects – by My Personal Finance Journey – Ughh. I really hate student debt. Not only does it keep young adults from living a life as a true adult (you know, out of their parents’ house and into their own), but it also creates other toxic behaviors. Check it out.

How Long Will It Take You to Achieve Financial Independence? – by Retire by 40 – I can live pretty comfortably on 25% of my income. By investing the rest, I could apparently become financially independent by the age of 37. Not too shabby. How about you? How long would it take you to become financially independent?

What’s Your Largest Ongoing Living Expense? Taxes of Course! – by Financial Samurai – Ever wonder how you can reduce your tax liability and pay less in taxes each year? This post will clue you in. Check it out and let me know how much less you’ll pay in taxes next year.

I hope you enjoyed these great articles from this past week! Now it’s time to check out my own progress on this blog (eek!). How am I doing with my goals after Week #11? Let’s find out!

My Goal Progress After Week #11

My goals are to, by the end of the year:

I was actually much more efficient with my writing this week. Not only did I write some kick butt stuff for my site, but I got ahead in my writing for other sites. Beyond this, I notched out some time to set up my free eBook offering to all subscribers (see it in the right sidebar?? 😉). While this hasn’t proved to attract many new subscribers thus far, it should provide a nice push for those that are on the fence about subscribing in the future.

I also recently read a blurb about Google downgrading sites that haven’t yet made their pages mobile friendly. While I am personally not a huge fan of the mobile page (I’d rather navigate the full webpage so I can actually find what I need…), I don’t want Google to drive traffic elsewhere just because I don’t have a decent platform for mobile devices. So, either today or in the upcoming week, I will be exploring options to improve my site in this way. Stay tuned!

Monthly Visitor Numbers

Thank goodness my monthly visitor numbers continue to rise! I can hardly believe how quickly they have skyrocketed since I started tracking them just 11 weeks ago – from 7,915 to 12,681! Crazy! I attribute this mostly to quality writing each and every day. People are really starting to notice and find themselves visiting my site more and more. I love it!

20150315 - Monthly visitors

Subscriber Numbers

Okay, so my subscriber numbers have jumped immensely according to Feedburner, but in actuality I have only increased my subscriber numbers by about 10 since last week. So either Feedburner is now completely messed up or it has finally started counting the subscriber numbers correctly. I really hope it’s the latter, but I’m not holding my breath! My current subscriber numbers are supposedly 1,237.

20150315 - Subscribers

Facebook Friends

Okay, so after a few weeks of dismal numbers (again, I have only 572 Facebook friends) I have finally researched how to attract more Facebook friends. Here are the suggestions I found and will likely start to incorporate into my Facebook feed:

  1. Use #hashtags both in your posts and to find others that are talking about topics you’re interested in (so you can join the conversation!)
  2. Be personal and funny – yeah, my Facebook page is pretty blah. I just post the titles of my articles as they go live. Not too exciting.
  3. Include a “call to action” to ask the opinion of your friends – I definitely don’t do this enough
  4. Use Images – I feel like I do this pretty well, but I could get better.

I also think that I’ll start posting videos about personal finance topics that would interest the readers. I’ve been wanting to do some video posts for my site, but I bet they would work out even better on Facebook! Stay tuned on this one. 🙂

20150315 - Facebook Friends

Twitter Followers

I have been plugging along with Hootsuite and setting up more consistent posts and it has been working, but just not as quickly as I was hoping (as usual, right?)! I will continue to plug away and attempt to put some more controversial messages out there that will spark some conversation. And, as usual, I will promote my awesome site and its content. 🙂 Current Twitter follower numbers: 1,980.

20150315 - Twitter followers

Do You Have Any Ideas For Me?

Do you often read these updates and think to yourself, “That fool, he should do [this]! THEN he would see his numbers ramp up!” If so, PLEASE TELL ME! Lol! I just want to improve this site as best I can, and if you have ideas, then please share. Thanks!



My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.


  1. Hey Derek,

    Are you tracking monthly visitors or page views?

    Either way good work in 11 weeks. Almost at a 100% growth.

    • Monthly visitors. Yeah, and I had another great day today! Love it!

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