Sumit Bansal runs Trump Excel, a blog where he shares excel tips and tutorials. First year, he made $0 from his blog. Find out how he turned things around and scaled to a profitable blog.
1. Can You Please Introduce Yourself to RahulDigital Readers?
My name is Sumit Bansal and I blog at TrumpExcel.com and CraftofBlogging.com. I have been a full-time blogger since 2015. Through my Excel blog, I help people with common Excel-related question and teach them how to be more efficient. I also create and sell online courses in Excel. Apart from this, I also regularly create videos for YouTube.
Apart from Excel, I also help people start and grow their blogs. I am also in the process of starting a few niche sites, mainly focussed on Amazon affiliate products.
2. Could You Please Share the Story Behind Trumpexcel & How Did It All Start?
I started my Excel site when I was working as a Financial analyst in an IT MNC. Since I was learning new things in Excel every day, I decided to start writing about it and share it with my colleagues and friends online. In the beginning, it was a side-hustle and my aim was to generate some side-income to supplement my main income.
I created written tutorials and videos for more than a year before making any money from the blog. Even when it started making money, it wasn’t a lot. Then I decided to create and launch an online course.
The course did alright and gave me the confidence to create more courses and look at the blog as a potential business.
I quit my job (which I really liked and enjoyed) in 2015 and I have been a full-time blogger since then.
3. What Would You Advice Someone Who Wants to Learn Excel?
My advice would be to try and learn things that can help you get your work done faster. Don’t try to learn everything as there is a lot. The aim is not to master Excel, but to be more efficient and get the work done faster.
If you’re a beginner, start with basics such as Formulas, filtering/sorting, data analysis, conditional formatting, etc. Once you get a hang of the basics, you can try and learn the advanced stuff.
I have a completely free Basic to Advance online Excel course that covers all the important concepts (direct access, no sign-up needed)
3. What is the revenue model for the blog?
I make money by selling online courses as well through display ads.
Apart from my Excel site, I also have a couple of (relatively new) Amazon affiliate sites that have now started to make money consistently. I shared more details about these sites in the Human Proof Design podcast here.
4. What are some strategies you have used for building up the traffic?
From the very beginning, I have focussed on creating high-quality content. Since I was absolutely new to the blogging world when I started, I didn’t know a lot about SEO and promotion. In the first few years, I only focussed on the content and that worked out well for me.
I have also been creating an email list for 4 years now and I send weekly emails to these people. This also brings a lot of traffic back to the blog.
5. How do you write great content that performs well?
I try to create content that helps answer a query. Instead of stuffing keywords, my aim is to help the reader get the answer to a query in the best possible way.
Most of the topics I write about are queries I get from my readers and in the comments. Apart from this, I also do keyword research to get some extra traffic from search engines.
6. What kind of promotional activities do you use for TrumpExcel?
I am not very active on social media. The only channel – apart from the blog – that I focus on is YouTube.
I sometimes spend time answering queries on forums, which is also a good source of referral traffic.
7. What’s your secret to becoming a successful blogger?
I am of the school of thought that content is king. I spend a lot of time and energy to make sure my content is high-quality.
Another thing that has helped me a lot is experimenting with blogging related tools. I subscribe and use a lot of tools (most of which I end up cancelling). I believe it’s important to know how to use some basic tools to be smart about blogging.
For example, instead of writing whatever you think may be useful for your reader, use keyword research tools to see what people are actually searching for.
8. What Tools Do You Use To Help You Run Your Business?
The following five tools are my favorite
- Elementor – To build pages and design the theme. All the new sites that I am starting now are built with Elementor
- Thrive Leads – To capture the email address. Thrive leads is quite flexible and offers a lot of different designs and layouts to create email signup boxes
- WP Rocket – The best caching plugin out there. You can use it right out-of-the-box without any configuration. While most of the caching plugins are quite complex, this one is easy to use and understand
- Canva – To quickly create some graphics. While this won’t give you professional-grade graphics, it’s easy to use has lots of templates/designs.
- SiteGround – A reasonably priced hosting with great support and infrastructure. I host all my new and mid-traffic sites on SiteGround.
9. Secret Question: How Much Do You Make Every Month From TrumpExcel?
I make healthy five figures (USD) every month.
Finally thank you Sumit for giving a ratio of your valuable time towards me.