2022 – A Year in Review
As the sun sets in 2022, we reflect on the year we’ve had at The Bumper Crew. It’s been a bumper year with tons of stuff going on. We’ve achieved a lot, done a lot and had a ton of fun. But before we get into the stats, we have some big news…
We Are Moving to London!
This is big news for us! An assignment came up that I (Joel) couldn’t refuse – a job in London that will likely be my last as a photographer in the Royal Navy. I will leave my teaching post at the Defence School of Photography in March to get back on the spanners retaking pictures, which I’m very much looking forward to. London is the most searched-for travel destination on the planet, too, which is excellent news for us, given we write a travel blog!
Stacey was promoted. Yay! Stace is quite impressive at her job (I can say that!) She manages a nursery in Wolverhampton and is so remarkable that she was promoted from nursery manager to Senior Manager and Quality & Development Lead for the company. After decades in the Early Years industry, she has finally found a company she loves and one that shares the same enthusiasm, values and ethos towards early years and the education of young people that she is sad to leave after just two years.
The positive part is that she’s had an extraordinary impact and will leave a positive legacy. What the future holds for Stacey in London, we do not know, but it’s exciting nonetheless!
6 Months Living in a Hotel
Have you ever wondered what it’s like living in a hotel for six months? Notable is the short answer. I was seconded to the Permanent Joint Headquarters in London for six months to help establish a content creation team. I didn’t particularly enjoy the job, but I learned a lot along the way – about strategy and myself.
Living in a hotel showed me one thing – how much life admin gets in the way when you live an everyday life. It’s incredible how much time you claim back because you don’t have to do life’s menial tasks, like cleaning, doing the dishes, and that boring stuff around the house I wouldn’t say I like doing. Instead, you can go to the gym, write blog posts, take pictures, and do what you want.
One thing I wondered from the very start was whether living in a hotel would get boring. No, was the answer. Stacey and I became more productive. We spent a lot of time focused on ourselves because we had time to consider ourselves, not us, as an entity for five days of the week. But being separated wasn’t all individualistic. We got to live and experience London, ahead of moving there next year, and support one another in our ventures, just remotely.
7 Countries Visited
We spent a bit more time focused on the UK and creating lots of local content, but we still managed to visit seven countries – Spain, Sweden, Greece, Belgium, Estonia, Italy and Greece. While I was seconded to the Permanent Joint Headquarters, I got overseas and managed a trip to Spain, Norway and Estonia. My trip to Norway was one of the best trips of my career. You can read that post here and find out why. Beyond that, we visited a few other countries and ended the year in Barcelona.
We try to spend every other year overseas if we can. This is because I’d rather be in bed (New years is overrated, right?), and I was asleep by 10 pm during our first New Year together, much to Stacey’s disappointment. So, we agreed to make something of it. And we have. Every other year we head overseas. We’ve been to Prague, Lisbon, Krakow and now Barcelona. Although, next year, we plan to stay and experience London.
28 Blog Posts Created
Living in a hotel enabled me to focus on the blog. During that time, I could focus on what was working and create more content to push the site forward. In the last 12 months, I have written 50970 words, including this post! That’s an average of 239559 letters! Wow! Ha!
£1790 Money Earned
The website costs money to run. Not much, maybe £20 a month or so, but it costs money all the same. So, we decided to take the step to monetise the site by adding Google AdSense. Previously, we’d been using Google Sites to run the website, but after a year decided to swap to WordPress. Google Sites was free, but WordPress isn’t because it needs hosting, plus a few other bits to make it run properly.
But to finish work in 2026 and travel full-time, we thought it was the right move. And after just a few months, the website has more than paid for itself. It’s not a great deal, but it’s paid for site running costs, some equipment and whatnot, and it’s better than a kick in the teeth, as they say.
2023 Pictures Edited
I take tons of pictures, and my archive has grown by over 2000 edited shots this year. It’s one of the things I love about being a photographer – recording our lives in super HD – where we’ve been and what we’ve done. And then you get to look over the archive and reminisce about our travels.
3620 Miles Driven
We’ve driven 3490 miles in trusty Bumper. He’s taken us to the Peak District, countless places around Shropshire, Waddesdon, on a Welsh road trip, to the South West, the airport a few times, on a Belgian road trip and to the impressive Dragon Tower. He’s also got me to and from London during my secondment to PJHQ many times.
14600% Increase in Web Traffic per Month
It’s been an excellent year for The Bumper Crew website, with an impressive increase in web traffic. And with an impending move to London, we hope to increase traffic even further throughout 2023. So watch this space for plenty of London content in 2023, including our first overseas trip, booked for the week after we move. We’re going to Brussels in Belgium! We will finish what we started during our summer road trip and explore Brussels properly.
65,000 Increase in Web Impressions per Month
We’ve increased web impressions, too. They don’t count for much but are an impressive figure, nonetheless. We might consider impressions a vanity statistic – web impressions, which show how much we show up in Google search results. But the more impressions, the more likely to be clicked, but of course, it’s never quite that simple – you have to write quality content to rank in the right place.
A Year in Numbers
- 1 Promotion
- 6 Months Living in a Hotel
- 7 Countries Visited
- 28 Blog Posts Created
- £1790 Money Earned
- 2023 Pictures Edited
- 3490 Miles Driven
- 14600% Increase in Web Traffic per Month
- 65,000 Increase in Web Impressions per Month
-The Bumper Crew’s 2022 – A Year in Numbers-
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