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SPI’s “Top 3 Everything” from 2014!

SPI’s “Top 3 Everything” from 2014!

By Pat Flynn on

With 2015 right around the corner, a lot of people are publishing year-end reviews on their sites. They are some of my favorite posts to read.

It’s great a way to look back and see how well (or not-so well) the year has treated you, and they usually include major milestones and accomplishments, the lessons learned and what could have been done better.

You’ll get a detailed year-end income report from me with all of the above in early 2015, but today I wanted to publish something a bit different. I like to call this, SPI’s “Top 3 Everything” from 2014!

We’re looking back into 2014’s archives and finding the top blog posts, top podcast episodes, tweets, status updates, instagrams, and other things.

I love to see what’s working, and here’s what worked well for me in 2014:

The Top 3 Most Visited Blog Posts

Over the past year, the blog saw a total of 7.59 million pageviews, across 1.66 million unique visitors.

I seriously had to triple check that because those numbers just blows my mind! Compare that to 6.08 million pageviews and 1.12 million uniques from 2013.

That’s a 24% increase in pageviews and a 48% increase in total visitors.

And all of this growth with a decrease in my frequency of blog posts (not including podcast episodes). 

In 2013, I published 48 blog posts. An average of almost 1 blog post per week.

In 2014, I published 38 blog posts. A 21% decrease.

There was growth in numbers, which was cool – but obviously the other platforms I have had a lot to do with that growth. I definitely feel like I could have written more though, and with the implementation of a new daily writing habit, an editorial calendar and a new mindset that not every blog post has to be a home run, I’m just going to write. I guarantee that you’ll see more blog content from me next year.

Across all 7.59 million pageviews, here are the top 3 most visited posts on SPI in 2014:

  1. How to Start a Podcast – Pat’s Complete Step by Step TutorialAlthough this was written in October 2012, this tutorial has become the most popular item on the site over the past couple of years. Podcasting is obviously a hot topic right now, and I’m thankful that my tutorial, which I keep as updated as possible, seems to resonate with people, and with search engines too. Most of the traffic is coming from Google and YouTube, where I rank at the top of the results pages for podcasting tutorial. My resource page and sidebar buttons are a big point of entrance as well.
  2. The Backlinking Strategy that Works – 2014 and Beyond EditionThis was a MASSIVE guest post from Brian Dean over at The amount of detail here that outlines the best evergreen practices for backlinking and getting a website to the top of Google is mindblowing, and it’s no wonder this was one of the most shared posts of the year.
  3. How to Launch a Website (With a Bang!) – The Ultimate GuideThis is one post in a series of posts in the Niche Site Duel 2.0 Case Study that goes into major detail about how to take that site you just bought a domain for, and launch it with some noise. I used this strategy to help launch with a few thousand visitors to the site on Day 1, and several people have done the same. This was also a widely shared article on SPI this past year, and it’s also getting a lot of hits from Google as well now, which only started to happen recently over the last month or two.

The Top 3 Most Commented Blog Posts

Part of what I love the most about SPI is the amazing community (that’s you!), and the interaction and engagement you have with the site. Some posts are a hit and the comments fly off the charts, and other times you’re a community of silent readers, which is totally cool too.

Here are the top 3 most commented posts that were published in 2014 on SPI:

  1. 5 Books I’ve Read More than Once in 2014 (1,225 comments): This one was published just last month, but definitely had the most comments. Primarily, it was because there was a giveaway and part of the entry was to leave a comment, but each of the comments are book recommendations from others so there’s a ton of value in this post, not just from me, but more-so from the community. I’ve already picked up a lot of book recommendations from you that I’ll explore next year, which is perfect because I’ll be reading 2 books per month as a part of my Miracle Morning routine.
  2. And They Said I was Stupid – A Thought from 21,400 Feet in the Air (466 comments):  I wrote this on a plane while flying to an event, and it seems to have struck a chord with many of you. Sometimes, the advice from others isn’t always the right advice, and in this post I share a specific example of that from my life.
  3. 5 “Five-Minute or Less” Blogging Tips That Yield Big Results. I’m Using Tip #1 in This Title (290 comments): When I talk about delivering quick wins to your audience, this is a perfect example. 5 tips that can each be consumed and put into practice in less than 5 minutes. If anything, check out this post to see how to structure something similar for your own audience. It works.

The Top 3 Downloaded SPI Podcast Sessions

In 2014, 48 podcast episodes were published. As you can see, compared to blog posts, I was a bit more productive with the podcast. With an editorial calendar and an audience who is expecting a show to go live on a certain day each week, I had a lot more motivation to get it done. I hope it’ll be the same way for blog posts next year too.

After looking at the list below, I was surprised because besides the episode with Tim Ferriss, who always attracts a large number of downloads, these are not episodes I would have thought to be the top downloaded episodes when I recorded them. The top two episodes are success story interviews with people outside of the online business / become an entrepreneur space, which is awesome because those are the types of sessions that will be published more often next year.

Here are the top 3 podcast episodes (based on total download numbers) that were published in 2014:

1. Session #99: Buying Stuff and Selling it on Amazon for 6-Figures a Year (125,968 downloads)

2. Session #112: How Matt Donley Quit to Go Full Time with his Side Gig (Even Though he’s not an Expert (95,554 downloads)

3. Session #110: Tim Ferris on Podcasting Productivity, Experimentation and If He Had to Start Over (94,639 downloads)

Since a podcast episode goes live each week, it’s obvious that total download numbers are not the perfect indicator of the success or popularity of a show, since more recent sessions wouldn’t have had the time to catch up or surpass earlier episodes from the year. Because of this, I wanted to also share the episode from the year with the most acceleration. That episode is:

Bonus: Session #140: Productivity and the Early Morning Routine with Hal Elrod (50,231 downloads in 2 weeks): This interview, and Hal’s book, Miracle Morning, has already had dramatic effects on my life and business. It’s perfect for the new year, so check it out if you haven’t already. I recommend listening to the episode first before anything. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]

The Top 3 Most Commented SPI Podcast Sessions

It’s hard to get people to comment on podcast episodes. Most people listen to podcasts while not in front of a computer, and even though most listen via their mobile devices, it’s not always easy to leave a comment. With that said, a few podcast episodes exploded with comments in 2014. Here are the top 3:

Session 119: What is a “Minimum Marketable Event”? (And How Did LeadPages Use It to Go From Zero to 25k Customers in Less Than Two Years?) (817 comments)

Session 134: Crucial and Common WordPress Mistakes and How to Avoid Them (705 comments)

Session 96: How to Make a Living Selling Your Artwork Online (343 comments)

All of these were awesome episodes of the podcast, and each had a specific reason to come back to the show notes and leave a comment. Check them out to get an example of how you can better get engagement from your own podcast episodes too.

The Top 3 AskPat Podcast Episodes

AskPat is my new 5-day per week podcast that went live on February 1st. It was a huge win for me this year! The crazy part? It only requires 3 hours of my time in total each month to produce, thanks to my team!

Yes, that’s not a typo. Only 3 hours per month!

The show has produced more than 3,000,000 downloads (as of last week) and has directly produced $46,170.57 in revenue through sponsorships, all in less than a year. If you want to get technical, that’s approximately $1,400 per hour.

A lot of people love the show because of it’s format. It’s a shorter episode (8-15 minutes), so people can fit it into their day easier, and each episode features a voicemail question from an audience member, followed by my answer. They are definitely focused episodes, and some people prefer and only listen to AskPat and not my main show! That’s pretty cool!

Here are the top 3 episodes of AskPat from this past year (based on total downloads):

1. #0001: How to Craft the Perfect About Page (204,467 downloads):

2. #0025 What are “Profitable Keywords”? How Do You Find Them, and What Do You Do With Them? (20,322 downloads):

3. #0135: If You Had to Start Again from Scratch, What Would Your First 90 Days Look Like? (19,044 downloads):

If you’d like to subscribe to this show and/or leave a voicemail question that could potentially be featured in 2015 (and I’ll send you a free AskPat shirt too!), all you have to do is visit

The Top 3 Tweets

Twitter was fun to watch this year. Not only was it cool to see my Twitter account pass 100,000 followers in November, but I’ve been more purposeful and more consistent with posting things that start conversations and inspire people to share. Less “me me me” has actually produced more results in terms of the effectiveness of when I do post a link or propose a call to action.

Edgar has been a helpful and integral tool in my social media strategy this year. I talk about this and social media best practices with Laura Roeder here in Session #132[Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]

Here are my top 3 tweets from the year based off of retweets and favorites:

The Top 3 Facebook Status Updates

My Facebook Page has grown to over 90,000 likes, which is awesome! It’s been so fun connecting with the SPI community on Facebook, and Facebook continues to be the #1 referring website for SPI. Things may change, however, since Facebook will be treating Facebook Pages (and their frequency in the news feed) much differently in 2015. Read their announcement here.

To help, I’ve created a Facebook Group which has already grown to hundreds overnight. If you’re a fan and friend of SPI, I recommend you click here to join the group and I will manually approve you into the group so we can continue to share discussions, provide value to each other and hold each other accountable.

Click here to join the group.

Here are the top 3 Facebook Status Updates from the past year:

The Top 3 Instagram Images

I’ve been posting a lot more on Instagram as well. If you aren’t following me on Instagram, check it out here – you’ll get a glimpse into what I’m working on, some motivation, and a lot of what’s most important to me. You’ll likely see a cute video or image of my kids that will make you laugh, cry, or maybe both, hehe!

Here are my top 3 from 2014:

And one more, just for fun:

Share One Thing That Worked For You in 2014!

I hope you enjoyed this overview from the past year on SPI! Now, I’d like to ask you…

What’s one thing that worked for you in 2014?

Maybe it was a blog post or a certain video that you published. A podcast episode or a photo perhaps. Whatever comes to mind, feel free to share it and post it in the comment section below, and share with the community what’s been working for you! You totally have permission to include a link if necessary to share your win.

Cheers, and here’s to an amazing 2015 for you and your business! Happy New Year!

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