In my series of interviews with travel blogger, I look for travel bloggers and influencers with interesting lives who can share some inspiring stories and useful advice from their experience. This week we have Dariece & Nick from GoatsOnTheRoad blog.
I’m Dariece, co-founder of Goats On The Road, a top travel and lifestyle website. Nick and I set off to see the world back in 2008 and knew we couldn’t return to our normal jobs back in Canada — we needed to be travelling. So, we figured out ways to make money, and save money, on the road so we could sustain our travels. We’ve been living and travelling abroad full-time since 2011 and wouldn’t have it any other way.
Realizing our goal of creating a website and business that could not only sustain our travels but provide us with a comfortable lifestyle, while being able to add to our savings as well. Meeting this financial goal was pretty big as it has given us a lot of freedom and happiness to continue doing what we love, while helping others along the way.
Simple. South Pacific island hopping trip! Swim, snorkel and island-hop during the day, and fall asleep to the sound of lapping waves from my overwater bungalow.
Since 2013, our travels are funded solely from income earned through our website. Prior to 2013, we taught English in China for a year, did some house and pet sitting, took on freelance writing jobs, and sold possessions and assets that we owned back in Canada.
There are a few things that bloggers can (and should) do to bring traffic to their site, but I think the best is guest posting. Write compelling, unique articles suited to your niche and request to be featured on other blogger’s websites. Ideally, bloggers with higher Domain Authorities than you. Within those articles, have a link back to your website to a relevant post that you’re trying to boost up with SEO.
When we were first starting on our blogging journey, we planned a trip to Central Asia. We were one of the first people to blog about travelling there, so to create a “buzz” around that trip and to gain followers, we did a “guest post bomb”.
We wrote 20+ articles about travel and at the end of each post, we had a short paragraph getting people excited about our upcoming adventure and to follow us, etc. Not only did we gain followers for that trip, but we received a lot of links to our site, which ultimately boosted us up in the rankings. Backlinking, when done right, is the best way to get traffic.
Affiliate marketing is the number one way we monetize our website, and we have quite a few partners. Next is in-content ads (we use Mediavine), followed by product sales from our online SEO Course and Ebooks.
We didn’t travel abroad when I was growing up, but we did go on some great camping and fishing trips in Canada! In terms of trips abroad, the first was when I was 20 and went to the Dominican Republic on an all-inclusive, week-long holiday with my best girlfriend. I’d love to return to the Dominican and actually travel around it!
A couple. We were yelled at, spat at and told to leave the country while in Morocco. Nick almost drowned in a riptide in Sri Lanka. A crazy guy held a knife to me in Kenya. We got scammed at the border between Malawi and Tanzania, had $1,500 stolen from us in Tajikistan, and have been sick way too many times to count! But, the positives of travel far outweigh any bad experiences. And, having been travelling now for 12 years, I think we’re doing pretty good!
There are too many to name. But, some standouts are Italy (Rome in particular), Grenada (which is where we’ve been basing ourselves), India for its amazing culture, Greece for its food and beauty, Iran for its hospitality and history, Colombia and Ecuador for their incredible people and amazing nature.
I don’t have a bucketlist really, but I would like to go hiking in Pakistan, do a road trip around Ireland, sail around the South Pacific, and travel to Madagascar.
I’d still be living abroad, even if I wasn’t moving around. But, since I wouldn’t’ be writing about travel anymore, I’d probably be teaching English in China like I was in 2012/2013. But, these days, since there are so many great companies available, I would probably teach for an online English company so that I could still work from anywhere in the world.
That no matter where you’re from, everyone in the world all wants the same thing in life. We all want to have a community of people and loved ones. We all want to be healthy and happy, and we’re all looking to earn enough money to support ourselves. That, and the fact that most countries aren’t as “scary” as media often makes them out to be.
There are many successful travel bloggers these days, but we’ve always looked up to Johnny from OneStep4Ward as he is the main reason we started blogging in the first place — and he’s since become a friend. He’s made lots of money with blogging, has created a charity to help give back to the places he visits, and he has a very large following.
We also admire our friends Dave and Deb from ThePlanetD who have been blogging for a long time! They have a loyal following, are ambassadors for numerous products and companies, and run a very successful website. Plus, they go on some amazing adventures together as a couple, and are still as in love as when they first started out.
These bloggers are successful because they’ve diversified their income streams, they enjoy what they’re doing, and they’ve put in the time and effort that it takes to get to that point.