A second view of the numbers

In my last blog post I wrote about how spring fever could possibly lead to more sales. Sounds like a joke but in fact I have no other answer. In this blogpost I would like to go a little deeper into the numbers.

As a reminder, in the category “Plugin Journey” I would like to share my journey with my product, namely SNIP, with the public. The reason for this is the book “Traffic Secrets” which I have read. In it, the author claims that if you write something every day for a year, I would virtually get endless sales.

Infinite sales?

Now I don’t write every day, but since I finished the book, twice a week. Assuming Russell Brunson is right, I’m only fulfilling the potential about 30% of the time. Conversely, that means it would take me more than three times (three years?) as long.

I guess the question someone has now is: why only 30%? Well, I like to write, but for me such a blogpost sometimes takes 1 hour or longer. I admit that it’s much easier for me to write about SNIP and the stuff around it than about any other topic, but it still takes time. And since – as I mentioned before – I share the upbringing of my son with my wife, my hours per day are limited. So I don’t want to and can’t spend an hour or more every day on a blog post, because I want to get on with plugin development as well. These are the disadvantages of a one-man-show, right?

Traffic & Sales in the last month

But once again, back to the traffic numbers. I did some more math and calculated how much more traffic I was able to create last month:

  • +6.6% more visitors to the website;
  • -7% less visitors at Envato
  • +39% more sales.

The numbers are for the previous month. But it’s still crazy, right? How can this be? Questions on my mind:

  • How can I have more visitors on the website, but less at Envato?
  • How can traffic at Envato be down 7%, but sales still up 39%?

It stands to reason that spring fever is to be blamed for. But I’ll try to dig a little deeper and find the cause.

Attempts for explanation

I don’t want to be satisfied with spring fever at this point, so I’ll start looking for the possible cause.

Seasons

Course of revenue at CodeCanyon over the course of the year. 2020 here.

I can look at the numbers at Envato since 2018. Before that I didn’t have enough sales or my offer of plugins though too diverse to derive anything concrete from it. I can read that out:

  • My numbers went down in 2018 to 2020 each September. In 2018, the trend was already visible in August and also still in October. In 2020, it was noticeable as early as July, but rose again in August before dropping in September.
  • Traditionally, numbers go up in November because of Black Friday and Cyber Monday Week at Envato. You can still feel that in December before sales drop again around Christmas.
  • Otherwise, I don’t see any trends. Especially not at spring time, which gives me the idea that the second Covid-19 wave might be to blame for that.

But in the end that’s just a guess and maybe it’s total nonsense to try to figure out why things happen and how people react, because you can’t change that. But of course it would be nice if it was something I could change to benefit permanently.

Sales figures higher despite fewer visitors!?

I would have guessed that January had more days than February. But it can’t be because of that either, if you cumulate the numbers. Still I would have made almost 50% more sales in February.

Traffic sources

The next thing I looked at was the traffic sources. This is what it looked like in January:

SourceNumber of visitors %
Direct57%
Google14%
ThemeForest6,2%
Impact Radius (Affiliates)3,7%
OthersRest

February:

SourceNumber of visitors %
Direkt48,7%
Google18,6%
Impact Radius (Affiliates)8,8%
ThemeForest5,8%
Alles andereRest

There’s no clue here either. On the question of what “Direct” means exactly, a page at Analytics-Toolkit helped me. It didn’t really get me anywhere, though, because the 50% is sort of anonymous to me. I don’t know where they come from. Definitely not from me because I always use an affiliate link for all links to Envato. And so it would be counted as an impact radius number. Unless the AdBlockers block something like that by now. Which may well be the case.

Sources of the buyers

This ultimately gave me the idea to take a look at where the buyers come from. According to Google Analytics, it looks like this:

SourceJanuaryFebruary
Impact Radius59%65%
Direct20%18%
Google12%19%
ThemeForest7%2%

Now let’s take a look at who the affiliates are:

AffiliateJanuaryFebruary
Ich59%63%
Andere39%30%
The rest is for other products (e.g. support sales)

This means that I myself am responsible for about 60% of my sales on CodeCanyon. What I can’t measure, however, is whether users first land on CodeCanyon, then switch to my site, and finally go back to CodeCanyon to buy.

And now?

As always, you don’t know exactly how visitors behave. For me, the behavior is totally irrational. Because I can’t explain the two questions from above. No Matomo, no Google Analytics or looking at the numbers in general helps. Because they give almost no clues what could be improved.

And now? How does that help me? That’s a very good question. The whole analysis from above helps in that I should actually try moving away from CodeCanyon/Envato. Because I am traffic driver number 1 with my own website and then still have to pay 30% to Envato.

Questions that pop into my head are:

  • Will I lose users (and thus sales) if I leave Envato? If so, how many?
  • Can I possibly earn more if I leave and rely on recurring payments?
  • What would a suitable strategy look like? CodeCanyon earns at least 50% on a non-exclusive sale.

I’ll get more thoughts on all of these questions with the next blog post. Thanks a lot for reading. See you then.