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It’s been a while since I’ve posted an income report, and that’s because I’ve been busy! God has been moving mountains in my life, and I’m excited to share!
One of our biggest life goals was to move out of Illinois back down South (preferably to Florida), and our dreams came true when my husband was offered a job in Pensacola, Florida, in March.
So, in May, the kids and I packed up the house and we moved to Gulf Breeze, a beautiful little town surrounded by water.
My blog income has really helped us make this dream a reality. God pulled me through some really tough times to get here, though. If you’d have asked me two years ago, I would have never thought we’d be here.
I launched the blog in January of 2018 and while I was super excited and eager to learn, I focused on all the wrong things.
The blog was just starting to gain traction when my world came crashing down. My marriage was in jeopardy, and I was in survival mode.
Instead of focusing on my blog, I focused on my marriage and my family. By the grace of God, we made it through this tumultuous time, and during that time, I only earned about $1,500 the first year.
In November of 2018, I applied for a part-time job. The hours were during the daytime, while my kids were at school, so I figured I’d be doing my part to help with our financial situation.
The job paid $10 per hour and offered 19 hours per week. $190 per week doesn’t seem like much, but I was also donating blood plasma at the time for an additional $400 per month.
Long story short, I didn’t get the job, but I prayed and asked God for guidance. I decided to refocus my efforts on the blog, and in January (just two months later), I earned $436 blogging.
The next month was my first full month with Monumetric, an ad network that crushes Adsense. I also had my real estate license and a client was referred to me by a friend. In February of 2019, my income totaled $5337.62 ($1427.62 was earned blogging)!
I shared numbers in my first year in review blogging income report that I had earned $28047 ($19,280 was from blogging; $8767 real estate).
I was blown away that I actually earned more blogging than I would have at that part-time job.
When I first started blogging, I’d heard of bloggers earning six figures per month! Yes, you read that right. There are bloggers who earn upwards of $100,000 every single month.
I just wanted to be able to make enough to help out with our debt snowball. An extra $100 was good, but $1000 would be great, and $3,000 would be life-changing.
What could you do with an extra $1,000 $3,000, $5,000 or $10,000 per month? Pay off all of your debt? Help your husband quit his job he hates? Move your family to a better location?
Blog Income Report – First 6 Months of 2020
There are a few things you need to read if you don’t have a blog yet. The first one is How to Start a Blog and Make Money from Home. This is where I share step by step exactly how to start a blog from scratch, along with a video tutorial.
You’ll also want to check out the 5 things you need to know before launching a blog in 2020.
I’ll get straight into the numbers. In the first six months of 2020, I have earned $23,277 blogging.
I actually wasn’t working much on the blog between March and June, when we were packing up our Illinois home to prepare for our big move to Florida.
I calculated my hours worked per week, and now that I’ve established several pieces of cornerstone content on the blog, I’ve been spending about 20 hours per week on the blog.
Since I’m earning about $4,000 per month on the blog, that comes out to a total of about $50 per hour earned working for myself.
I don’t have a college degree, y’all. My background is in banking and real estate, so everything I’ve learned has been self-taught and learned through experience.
I never thought I’d be able to earn $50/hour working for someone else, let alone for myself.
A lot of variables go into how much money a person can make blogging. Some bloggers just get lucky and choose a very profitable niche or have a few pieces of content that go viral, and voila….they’re earning the big bucks. But we all grow at different paces, so know that it’s okay if you’re growing slowly.
I could obviously probably double my income if I doubled my hours, and I am posting more regularly now, so we will see where that takes me.
I can’t wait to update you on the progress going forward.
Income Report Breakdown – How Do I Make Money Blogging?
A major question you may be asking is “How do you make money? How do you get paid?”.
I didn’t quite know how it all worked when I first got started either. I thought ads would be my main source of income, but I was wrong.
Here’s a breakdown of my income:
- Ad Revenue from Mediavine – $6,593.96
- Affiliate Marketing – $13,994.83
- YouTube Ad Revenue – $1473.75
- Sponsored Posts – $1,000
- Coaching – $215
As you can see, affiliate marketing has taken over as the main source of income here.
Affiliate marketing is simply the practice of partnering with companies to share their products (that you know, love, and trust) in exchange for a portion of their revenue.
So when I share a review of a product that has helped me earn more money blogging, I’ll include affiliate links, and when someone purchases the product, that company shares a portion of their revenue with me.
Some of my favorite affiliates include:
This is not to be confused with multi-level marketing schemes that require you to purchase a set amount of PV, or personal volume, every single month in order to stay “active” and get paid earnings.
You also don’t have to pester friends and family. In fact, all of my earnings are coming from readers of the blog and viewers of my YouTube channel…not friends or family.
With every business income report, there I have to share expenses. It costs money to run a blog. In six months, my expenses were as follows:
- Hosting – $65.70 – BigScoots (although I used to use Bluehost and recommend them for smaller and new blogs for affordability)
- Email – $89.28 – I switched from ConvertKit to Birdsend and am loving it! Birdsend is much more affordable and offers the same (or better) services as ConverKit.
- Pinterest Ads – $116 – I recently started playing around with promoted pins, and it paid off big time! My affiliate sales as a result of this $116 spent totaled $3,170. I’d say that’s a hefty ROI!
- Payment Gateway Fees – $25.30
- Pinterest Templates and Stock Photos – $116.94
- Blog WordPress Support – iMark Interactive – $307.80 – This is my largest expense and it is well worth it. Grayson Bell is the king of fixing all things WordPress when I mess something up! He backs up my site and will fix issues I might have, and I also get access to premium plugins and themes (like my theme, Astra Pro).
Total Expenses (6 Months): $721.02
Net Income: $22,555.98
Pageviews Don’t Determine Income and Blog Worth
I can’t stress this enough. You don’t need hundreds of thousands of pageviews in order to earn a good, livable wage blogging.
For the longest time, I was stuck at 10,000 pageviews. I had plateaued, and it was really depressing. It’s important that you don’t get sucked into the comparison trap.
Comparison is the thief of joy, and we all know joy comes in the morning, so just keep on working hard and you will get there!
Mediavine has just raised threshold requirements to 50,000 sessions per month. This means it’s twice as hard to get into their ad network. But don’t fret!
What can you do in the meantime? Apply to Monumetric as soon as you reach 10,000 pageviews.
The extra earnings from Monumetric vs Adsense or Ezoic will motivate you to keep pushing towards your goals.
SEO Matters More Than Any Other Metric
Ranking your articles in Google via search engine optimization should be your #1 goal….not reaching 50,000 sessions.
If you’ve already started your blog and decided on your niche, start researching long-tail keywords that you can eventually rank for in Google.
Long-tail keywords are terms such as “best personal finance books for women“. They’re very descriptive terms that people are searching for.
If you try to rank for “personal finance books”, you’d find that there is stiff competition. You need to niche down your content and articles.
The King of SEO, in my opinion, is my buddy Mike at Stupid Simple SEO. I purchased his course and basically doubled my income within a few months. He only opens his course for enrollment a few times a year, but he does offer a free video training on How to Increase Google Traffic in Less Than an Hour. I highly recommend any of his training courses!
Pinterest Traffic is Gold
Twitter and Facebook suck for bringing traffic to the blog (unless you pay for ads).
Pinterest is the best way to get free traffic to your blog or YouTube channel. Yes, you can create pins for your YouTube channel to drive traffic and increase subscribers!
You’ll notice that Pinterest traffic is very “bouncy”, meaning people show up and quickly bounce off your page and onto something else.
But there’s power in numbers, so take advantage of Pinterest as a great source of traffic and income.
- 335 million users
- 3rd largest social network in US
- More than 2/3 of users are women, primarily moms
- 8 out of 10 moms use Pinterest
- High income households are twice as likely to use Pinterest than Low income households
This means that there is money in marketing on Pinterest. Plain and simple. If you aren’t using Pinterest to market to your audience, you’re leaving money on the table.
At the end of last year, when I calculated my year in review totals, I was finally realizing the fruits of my labor.
As I started earning a little more, I would reinvest it back into the blog so that I could learn more about how to increase my income.
I truly believe that these investments were a huge part of my growth. If you’re too scared to invest in yourself, you’ll struggle to move forward.
3 Blogging Courses That Helped Me Grow
I recommend three different courses without hesitation. They are as follows:
- Pinteresting Strategies – As I mentioned, Pinterest is the #3 social media platform in the US, and there’s money in marketing on Pinterest. In this $57 course, I learned how to manually pin once a day for approximately 30 minutes.
- Stupid Simple SEO – Mike’s course has been invaluable to me. Do yourself a favor and sign up for his free video training until his course enrollment opens up. You’ll be so glad you did!
- Six-Figure Blogger – Alex and Lauren built a six-figure blog in a year, and they are teaching others how to do the same. I purchased the Six-Figure Blogger course, but you can check out their course roadmap to see which course is right for you.
Blogging Has Changed My Life
I’m still working on fulfilling God’s purpose for my life. I am feeling led to write a book and/or speak, so I’m unsure as to how that may look, but stay tuned!
If you are interested in learning how to start a blog, check out my tutorial here. I walk you step-by-step through the process, and if you have any questions, you can always drop me a line at melissa [at] perfectionhangover.com.
Life is a collection of memories and experiences. There are ups and downs. I am so grateful for God’s grace and am on the journey to a renewed spirit, free of perfectionism. Perfection Hangover offers the sober truth – no filter.