Thank you so much to everyone who filled in the Planning With Kids Survey. Your feedback is so incredibly helpful to me. By reading what you thought about content over the past year and suggesting ideas of new things for me to try, it adds depth to my content plan for the new year.
Of the 609 respondents, 99.2% were female and 89% of readers lived in Australia (Victoria represented the largest group with 38%). I will write a couple of posts on the info from the survey, but this one is about how the results have influenced what is happening on the blog.
What did you want to see on the blog in 2013
Readers were very generous with the time they spent on this question and sharing their thoughts. I have incorporated as many suggestions as I could this year into the content plan, some of which you would have seen already like:
- The monthly parenting teenagers posts (second one to come later this week).
- Goal setting and working towards your goals, also to be monthly.
- More posts on budgeting to come through out the year.
- Lunch box recipes will continue.
- Educational posts – the last post in the literacy series will go up this week.
- Guest posts from mums who have different family set up to mine. I realise that the family structure I have, is not what everyone else has. Incorporating guest posts from other mums who have different experience to me, allows for more diversity on the blog and I can use them to cover topics, that I wouldn’t otherwise be able to write about like having a single child or being a single parent.
Other posts I have planned out this year in response to feedback are:
- A greater focus on mum in terms of time management, health (incorporating mental health) and fitness.
- More “bad days” type posts from me (and they absolutely do happen)!
- Routine type posts, particularly around kids school stuff. Some of the topics I have written on before, but maybe as long as five years ago! Things evolve in family life, so many of them are definitely due for an update.
- There often isn’t much focus on dad / partner on the blog, so will write a little more about this too.
But I thought you might like to see some of the comments people left and obviously I couldn’t add all of them in this post, but the list below represents a pretty good cross section of what people were saying:
- It’s nice to hear that sometimes you have a bad day or week. It’s great to hear that we are all the same and that no one is perfect.
- More on planning, sheets I can down load. How to stick with your plans, maybe more emails to remind?
- More things on teenage boys I have four boy on who is in high school this year I need all the help I can get
- Basic weekly routines – eg what works for you?
- Managing behaviour, family holiday destination reviews.
- Planning and goal setting
- I enjoy your meal planning, particularly lunch box ideas.
- More stories of your “bad days” and how you cope, I just read a story how u dealt with a off day you were having and it definitely helped me feel that you are just like all us mums out there and gave inspiration that we all have bad days but being organized helps to reduce stress and things going wrong.
- Parenting one child Activities for one child
- ideas for presents for teenagers ideas for teenagers to do at home in the holidays more main meal recipes keeping mum healthy in the busyness of life good websites for kids to play on the computer- primary school and highschool age
- Managing life as a single parent
- More topics about managing working and family commitments (including after school activities, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping etc)
- Time management
- Routines, budgeting, making time for yourself.
- More homemade gift ideas; children’s behaviour; keeping kids moving in the mornings
- I really enjoy reading up on your holiday suggestions with the kids around Melbourne, I check your blog prior to every holidays
- More motivational / goal setting. More practical tips especially on organising kids activities school and home life.
- Mummy health fitness and mental health
- Perhaps career posts for mums returning to work.
Suggestions on how I can improve Planning With Kids
The responses to this question were also well considered and very generous. So many of you left the loveliest comments thanking me and giving examples of how the blog helped in your family life, which was just wonderful to read.
There was also great constructive criticism. Key points being:
Make it easier to find older posts – I had hoped to have sorted this out with the new design last year, but I agree that it is still not quite right. I am currently working out ways to do this and will hopefully make some changes in the next couple of months.
Speed of the site loading – for some readers this is an issue, so I am going to get a professional to take a look at this and provide advice on what I can do to improve it.
Menu planning app – it had a bug recently and readers gave feedback on this and other issues around the app. I am meeting with the developers this week, so will provide a full update after this.
Print friendly versions – I think those who noted they were having trouble with print friendly versions, maybe just reading in email? If you click through the the blog you will see a green button like this at the end of the posts like highlighted by the red arrow below:
Sponsored / review posts – there were a couple of mentions around sponsored posts, so I thought I would point out my updated disclosure policy which can be read here. Sponsored posts enable me to spend the time I do on the blog. My family needs a second income and while I have diversified income stemming from the blog, sponsored posts are an integral part of the Planning With Kids business.
I am however mindful of the frequency of sponsored posts and the suitability of the products / services to the blog and ensuring breadth of content across the week and month. I am very selective about the sponsored opportunities I take on and decline way more than I accept.
A trickier area for me is reviews. I receive so many requests, especially from small business, home based businesses, authors and not for profits asking me to publicise their product or cause. I think at times my good intentions to help others out has unbalanced the content. I am working on a way that I can still try and support these without disrupting the flow of the core content of the blog.
Well if you are still reading to the end of this very long blog post – thank you! Just as with my family life, my blogging life is not perfect and I am always listening, learning and trying to improve what I do.
I appreciate that my readers are happy to help with this, through the completing the survey and interacting with me either via the comments, email or other social media.
Thanks again for reading Planning With Kids!