This ” How I Made Over $1,400.00 On My 4th Month Of Blogging ” is my 2nd ever income report. I am proud of what I accomplished this past month, which is a lot given that I have a full-time day job and have a family to take care and come home to. This post contains affiliate links/ads. See disclosure policy.
Just a disclaimer before I do my monthly spill, I didn’t put the exact figure I earned last month because I’m still waiting for one or two advertisers that haven’t given me my revenue figures yet. I will update the content (not the title) to reflect the total earning after I receive the information.
Here we go….
Welcome to my May 2016 income report. This is the one post every month that I show you in great detail how I made money, how much I made, what I did and didn’t do, and my monthly goals. I told myself I would post my income report every month once I started earning some money.
Before I show you my earnings for May 2016, let me give a background on why I decided to blog my income.
First, I like to see my income journey from month to month. When I say income, I mean income from anything related to blogging. I do not count my day job income and the money I receive from my side hustles. That is just an FYI to avoid confusion.
I am a very visual person. I want graphs, charts, and tables. I need to see where I was and where I am at this point. I believe blogging my report regularly addresses such need.
Second, I’m still pretty much a new blogger by many people’s definition. I have only been blogging for 4 months now and have had triumphs and hiccups (actually a lot) along those 4 months. I never thought that it is possible to earn money this early on in my blogging life but it has happened. I believe it will continue to be better from here (hopefully). I like to be an inspiration to those who just started or are just starting out.
I have seen and heard lot of bloggers who haven’t made money or have made some money even when they have been blogging for quite some time. I want to share my report to show other bloggers or would-be bloggers that it’s possible to earn money regardless of how long one has been blogging.
Third, I believe in transparency. While I blog about everything under the realm of personal finance and its intertwining relationship with family and life, my blog is also monetary vehicle for my family. When you see advertisements on my blog posts, those are income-generating ads.
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May 2016 Income Report
May 2016 was the best month for me, that is, money and traffic wise. My blog income more doubled from last month and it’s only my 4th month of blogging. For those who haven’t read my first income report, I stated there that technically, I have been blogging since December 2015 but didn’t market or tell anybody about my blog until the 28th of January. So, I consider February as my official blogging start date. Again, it’s just an FYI to avoid confusion.
I believe the reasons I earned this money are both because of my determination and hard work to make blogging, well, work (for the lack of a better work) and because of luck. I always put luck in the mix because up to now I am still figuring out which strategy works.
Here are my income and expenses:
Google Adsense: $70.54
Flex Offers: $568.00
Smart Asset: $121.33 (April income I forgot to report last month. I’m still waiting for the May report).
Sponsored Posts: $140.00
Income Total: $1,441.87
Expense Total: $119.98
Net Income: $1,321.99
A couple of people have asked me if I could detail my income per marketing affiliate and here is the breakout of the $1,441.87 for the month of May:
American Consumer Opinion: $280.00
Bluehost: $588.00 (Affiliate link through Flex Offers and direct link from Bluehost)
Google Adsense: $70.54
Sponsored Posts/Mentions: $140.00
WP Engine: $200.00
What I Did and Didn’t Do
Now, I know you will ask how I was able to earn money even when I’ve only been blogging for 4 months. In my last income report, I did explain the things I did to make money and increase my page views, Alexa rankings, etc. Now, I am including what I didn’t do last month that I should have done.
- Sign-ups. This past May, I signed-up for two advertisers. For those who want to use these subscribers, please feel free to use my links I here:
- IZEA – If you want to get sponsored by big brands, this may be just your ticket. According to the site, it connects content creators with the world's biggest brands.
- NewsMax – It's the widget you see on the sidebar with the “Take A Look” section header. If you see some spammy news, I was told that it takes a couple of days before the code crawls in the site and gets the relevant data.
- Follow-up. The same thing I’ve done in the past couple of months, that is, I followed up with people who needed help. I am a part of a couple of Facebook groups for bloggers. When someone asked me questions, I not only answered the questions but also offered help. I built relationship as a result. This free assistance translated into sign-ups for products (through ads I have in my blog).
- Offline marketing. While I focused my time on social media (for the most part), I still used the good, old form of marketing. I talked to friends, co-workers, and family regarding my blog. Since my blog centers on personal finance, I geared my speech almost always on services related to personal finance (i.e. Bluehost, WP Engine, Motif Investing and Personal Capital). Remember, a small talk can make a big difference.
- Products/Services testing.There are a lot of surveys that turned out to be scam. But not all of them. I used myself and my wife as examples on how we were able to make money through surveys. I convinced them to try the surveys. Now, they’re making enough money to pay for groceries, gas, etc. I didn’t include what I earned by doing surveys here. What I included in my income report are the referral fees I got from those who signed up through my link.
- Sponsored Posts/Mentions: While I can’t say that I pursued sponsored posts, I can say that I entertained a couple of sponsored posts or mentions for this month.
Did not do but should have done
- The major casualty of the past month was my Twitter account. My twitter activity and followers moved but not in the pace that I hoped they did. As of May 2016, I had 1,430 followers, which is up by 314 followers. As for my Twitter visitors from my site, the number of visitors was almost the same as that of the last month.
May 2016 Greatest Achievement (i.e. Pinterest)
My greatest, biggest, and whatever ‘est’ accomplishment in the past month was Pinterest. I focused on growing my Pinterest audience in May. All of my efforts paid off.
Here are my stats for May:
- Followers count: 217 followers in April; 1,134 followers (total) in May. (522.58% increase)
- Unique visitors (not views): 110 visitors (average) in April; 9,830 visitors in May. (8,836.36% increase)
- Open board: I created the “Bloggers’ Portal – No Posting Limit” in May. It’s a board created to provide an avenue for new board seekers to pin their materials. In the past month, I requested to join a ton of boards and only a few approved my requests. I felt bad because I did put a lot of effort in searching and crafting my request piece but a lot of board owners never responded to me. I knew I wasn’t alone and so, I decided to create this board.
- Open board (continuation). The board only has one restriction (i.e. not to add pins of vulgarity, nudity, and offensive stuff by nature). For those of you who want to join my board, please visit the board’s link above. Follow the board, follow my Pinterest account, and message me (on Pinterest) the email attached to your Pinterest account.
- Tailwind: Tailwind is my magic tool behind my success with Pinterest. I used to spend hours pinning and scheduling pins with no luck in generating viewers. Now, all I need is an hour a day to pin at least 250 pins across boards in my account.
Some of the features of Tailwind include:
- Schedule Pins (Optimize pinning schedule based on your audience’s engagement)
- Saves you time (by allowing you to do multi-board pinning, bulk upload, and others)
- Discover Content from Pinterest
- Measure Results (see which pins are working and which aren’t)
- Has Pinterest Management, Analytics, and Marketing Tools for your benefit
- Try it For FREE. I recommend you opt for a year subscription for only $9.99/month with unlimited pinning ($119.98/year) versus monthly subscription of $15.00/month with 400 schedule pin limit per month.
I have to tell you that I saved at least 100 hours this past month managing my Pinterest using Tailwind with better results. I opted for yearly subscription than monthly subscription because: (1) it’s cheaper on a yearly basis and (2) I scheduled at least 250 pins everyday across all my boards. Had I opted for monthly subscription, I would have consumed my limit by day 2.
For the month of May, I had 29,399 views, which is a 73.34% increase from last month’s 16,960 views. I didn’t put my Google Analytics because, apparently, I turned off my analytics and I only I got traffic numbers for the last week of May. So, I decided to place the analytics I have in my WordPress.
I am so happy to see my traffic grow month by month. A big portion of the increase in traffic is due to my Pinterest traffic. I can’t stress enough how Tailwind has helped me achieve a stellar traffic increase for May.
I don’t know how to calculate the traffic by % and so, I can’t tell how big Pinterest’s contribution was to my substantial traffic increase. If you guys know, please let me know.
June 2016 Goals
I believe in setting goals. Going through life (e.g. blogging life) without a goal is like walking on never-ending road without a foreseeable end in sight. The goals I set for myself this June are both easy and challenging to achieve. I like to always try and be better at whatever I do.
- Page views. I want to see 1,200 views a day, at least. Maybe I’m shooting aimlessly but I will try my best to make this possible. (May Goal: 1,000/day ; Result: 949/day) – Failed. Close enough but I didn’t achieve it.
- Alexa rank.I like to be ranked under 150,000 (World) and 40,000 (US) by the end of June. This is just a stretch. I’ve seen popular and established blogs that are in this range but they’ve been blogging for a long time. I’ve only been blogging for 5 months so this may be light years away. (May Goal: 400,000 (World) and 70,000 (US) ; Result: under 271,000 (World) and under 53,000 (US)) – Succeed. I totally killed and nailed this goal.
- Social Media Presence.I want to increase my social media connection across all my platforms by end of the month. If you like to follow me, the links are located below:
- Twitter: 2,000 followers. (May Goal: 2,000 ; Result: 1,430) – Failed. Not too close but nice try.
- Pinterest: 2,500 followers. (May Goal: Not defined ; Result: 1,330) – Succeed. Way too happy.
- Facebook: 800 fan page likes. (May Goal: 800 ; Result: 540) – Failed. Nice try though.
- Instagram: 500 followers. (May Goal: Non-existent ; Result: 110) Succeed. I didn’t have Instagram but now I do.
- Guest post.I want to create more guest posts for this month. If you guys are looking for guest posts, please let me know and I would be glad to create a post for your blog. (May Goal: More than the usual 2-3 per month ; Result: 3 guest posts). Failed. I didn’t pursue this goal at all.
- I would want to double my income for June. Yes, double the amount it is. (May Goal: Double my April’s $657.17 income ; Result: $1,400+) Succeed. The income more than doubled considering I’m still waiting for one or two advertisers to tell me the final figure for May.
- Email subscribers. I like to have 400 subscribers by the end of June. As of this writing, I have 113 email subscribers. In April, I only had 45 subscribers. If you want to get new posts from The Practical Saver directly to your inbox, please subscribe using the floating bar on top of my blog.
- Posting on bigger platforms.I would like to contribute to bigger platforms like the CNN Money. I have one published to Huffington Post in April and that’s about it. My blog post was The Success Of Failure: How Failures Help Me Succeed. (May Goal: more platforms ; Result: Nada) – Failed. This one is a total failure. I didn’t even make any effort to contact any big websites.