*This post contains affiliate links
Hey there, blogger! I’m so excited to bring you my second blog income report!
Some important things to note:
- This income report shows ONLY my income made from blogging (affiliate links and digital products sold on my blog). It does not show ALL my income. I make money freelancing, but want to respect my clients’ privacy by not revealing how much they pay me.
- Showing affiliate income is tricky because often payments are delayed until you reach a payment threshold, or, as with Amazon, I get paid for one month’s earnings two months later. So what I report below is what I EARNED that month, not necessarily what hit the bank account yet.
- This shows GROSS income, that is, income before taxes. I will reveal blog expenses below though.
- This report shows income from my 4-year-old travel blog, so it is NOT a new blog! It’s just the first time I’m actually getting serious about monetizing it.
Why I’m Sharing a Blog Income Report
I am OBSESSED with reading income reports because I love to see what’s possible. I glean a lot of inspiration and education from them, so I hope sharing my blog income report will inspire you and help you as you seek to make money blogging too.
My goal is to earn $4K a month in passive income from my blog; that means from advertising, affiliate links, digital products (eBooks and online courses) and possibly sponsored posts (though I’m not doing those yet).
Previous Blog Income Reports
February 2017 Blog Income: $363.77
Let’s break it down below:
|Total Affiliate Income||$299.14|
Digital Products (eBook)
|Kindle eBook Royalties||$41.72|
In early February I put up Google AdSense ads for the first time!
February 2017 Blog Expenses: $298.90
|SiteGround – What I use to host all my sites!||$14.95|
|Canva for Work – I use this to create killer graphics, like the ones you see above||$12.95|
|MailChimp – My email marketing platform. I’m thinking of switching to ConvertKit, but MailChimp is about half the price, so I’m sticking with it for now.||$15.00|
|iMark Interactive – Monthly blog tech support||$47.00|
|Pajama Affiliates Blogging Course – A solid foundation for blogging and affiliate marketing||$54.00|
|Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche Course – My FAVORITE Pinterest resource (and I’ve taken 1 other and WAY more expensive Pinterest course!)||$97.00|
|Jaaxy Keyword Research Tool – What I use to see how well I can rank a blog post in Google||$19.00|
|AppSumo Deal – SERPstat Keyword Research Tool – I bought this as a potential alternative to Jaaxy. So far it seems much more in-depth!||$39.00|
|Total Blog Expenses||$298.90|
I invested A LOT into my blog in February, which is a good thing because I truly believe it will pay off in big ways in the long run—and it already has started to! In February I spent more than 3 times more on blog tools than in January.
February 2017 Total Blog PROFIT: $64.97
Blog Traffic Report
How much I’m making from my blog doesn’t mean much without traffic numbers for context, so here we go!
My traffic actually decreased in February compared to January. This is in part because February is a short month, but I also noticed by looking at my Google Analytics report from all the way back to 2012 that February tends to be a low month overall. This made me a little concerned, but my traffic is starting to rise again, so all good!
What’s astonishing is that in February, my blog income increased by 18% even though my blog traffic decreased by 12%. So traffic and income are NOT always correlated.
What Helped Me Grow My Blog Income in February:
- I bought and finished the class Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche and implemented their Pinterest techniques!This one was HUGE for me. I’ve bought a TON of online courses for my business over the past 2 years, but this one is by far my FAVORITE! After implementing their strategies, this is what my Pinterest traffic looks like:
If you want to grow your traffic via Pinterest and don’t know where to start, I’d recommend not messing around and just buying Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche to show you the ropes! Here’s something else amazing: I’ve purchased a VERY popular and VERY expensive Pinterest course PLUS a paid Pinterest resource from another famous blogger…and Pinterest Traffic Avalanche is STILL my favorite. In fact, it’s the only one I am an affiliate for because I ONLY sign up for affiliate programs of products I truly believe in.
- I read Ruth Soukup’s How to Blog for Profit Without Selling Your Soul. This book was a HUGE eye opener for me! I strongly recommend it for any beginner blogger (or even advanced bloggers). Ruth does a great job of explaining how to monetize your blog if you’re a beginner. She thoroughly describes all the different monetization routes you can take. It was because of this book that I realized I really need to focus on increasing my pageviews, and it was this book that inspired me to insert Google AdSense ads on my blog for the first time since I started it 4 years ago.I loved this book so much I bought the paperback version for my friend for her birthday because she wants to start a food blog. Check out How to Blog for Profit Without Selling Your Soul.
- I put Google AdSense ads on my blog. As mentioned above, I decided to install these ads because of Ruth’s book, but also because I realized something that was KEY for me: With AdSense, YOU CAN block certain ads from appearing on your site! You know those really wacky, weird, or downright inappropriate ads that can appear on sites? This was the only thing keeping me back from placing AdSense on my travel blog, BUT there is a solution! In your AdSense dashboard, you can block ads from certain categories (like weight loss, gambling, alcohol, etc.) AND you can block certain ads by URLs or even block ads that did appear on your site in the past but you don’t like. This made me feel comfortable about putting ads on my blog. And it paid off! AdSense was only on my blog for 2/3 of February, and it made me $22.91 without me having to do a thing! I like it!
- Thanks to the advice from Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche, I started pinning mostly my own content. This piece of advice BLEW my mind because if you’re a blogger and have heard from all the “experts” out there raving about Pinterest, most will tell you to pin 80% other people’s pins and only 20% of your own. This is crazy! According to Lauren at Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche, she was able to grow her Pinterest account to 500,000 click throughs to her site a MONTH partly due to pinning MOSTLY her own content! So I quit curating other people’s content and now pin about 90% of my own pins. This definitely had a huge impact as you can see from the spike in traffic I got from Pinterest!
- I bought and got halfway through Pajama Affiliates Blogging & Affiliate Marketing Course. Okay, to be honest, if you click through to that site and look at it, it looks a bit clunky and messy. It doesn’t look professional, but DO NOT LET THAT STOP YOU! Robin of Pajama Affiliates knows her stuff! I’m amazed at how cheap this course is. I bought a different Affiliate marketing course for more than 3X that amount and it was not as good! I highly recommend Pajama Affiliates. I haven’t completed the course yet, but what I’ve learned so far has already helped me publish blog posts that immediately ranked on the first page of Google. Woot!
- I bought Jaaxy Keyword Research Tool and started heavily researching keywords before writing posts to make sure I have a chance of ranking on the first page of Google. Thanks to Pajama Affiliates, I bought the Jaaxy Keyword Research Tool. It looks complicated, but don’t be scared! You basically just type in keywords you think your target audience may be searching (like “how to start a blog”) and it will tell you how many searches per month occur for that keyword, how many other sites are trying to rank for that keyword (your competition), and what the chances are that you’ll rank #1 in a Google search for that keyword. This is ESSENTIAL if you want to do proper SEO for your blog (which you should)! Check out Jaaxy to gain the upperhand in Google search.
Phew, as you can see, February was a busy month for my blog! I am 100% dedicated to making this work, and I believe I will hit $4K/month from my blogging sometime this year. What I’ve learned is you have to commit to your goal…you can’t be on the fence about it. Once you know what you want and you commit to it, you are well on your way to success.
Here’s to an even bigger blog income report next month!