Did you know I’ve been at this for 57 Months? That’s almost 5 years of blogging for those of you who are mathematically challenged like I am. That’s a very long time. I can read back through posts and see life changes. A couple, anyway. Today I’m showing you my first Blog Income Report. You might be wondering why I waited almost 5 years to share this information.
***Update 5/1/2018 The links below are no longer affiliate links. I love Billionaire Blog Club so much, I got them to hire me! I’m the Community Manager for BBC, but everything you’ll read below holds true, 100%. I couldn’t be prouder to be a member of the BBC Team.***
The answer is because I’ve never had any income to report prior to 1/2018. In fact, I lost money most months because I was spending money on the things it takes to operate a blog. I would bring in about $20-$30 from Amazon Affiliate sales and every 6 months I might get a check for about $100 from Adsense.
The logical reaction to this is, why in God’s name would someone continue to do this for 57 months with nothing to show for it??
Well, first, there’s a lot to show for it that isn’t money. I have amassed over 500 blog posts. I’ve made lots of awesome stuff and that makes me happy. I go back and read some of the posts that are more essays than tutorials and those are my favorites. I’m super proud of what I’ve done whether it earned me any money or not. I’m proud of the things I’ve written. I’m proud of all that I’ve learned and I’m proud that I persisted at something that I loved even though it wasn’t getting the results I was hoping for.
But, mostly I continued blogging for all those many months because I loved it and I knew I was good at it. It feels good to be good at something. It feels good to do something you love. Some of the days of those months were not good days. I had hardships and tragedies in the time that has passed. My kids went through difficult things. We lost a beloved family member, suddenly. And I had this outlet. I could write whatever I wanted or make something and write about it and it was a small, calm oasis for my brain. If I never make another penny from this blog, I would keep going for that reason.
When I started blogging, it was because I was inspired by DIY blogs like Young House Love. I had no earthly idea what kind of time/effort/commitment went into creating a blog like theirs. But I knew that their blog had earned them job quitting money (both of them!) and they got to spend their time redecorating their home together and chilling with their daughter. So I cobbled together all of the information I could find on the internet and I figured out how to set up a free WordPress blog. Because I wanted to redecorate and chill with my kids, too.
Well, I can tell you that the one way to not get far at all in blogging is to build your blog from cobbled together internet information. There is at the same time WAY too much information out there and available AND none of the RIGHT information out there and available. Do a search on Pinterest for how to blog. You will come up with a STUNNING amount of information and the headlines will make grand promises. And you will get a lot of good information about how to start a blog. You definitely will.
But you won’t get the information or support you need to GROW a blog. For that, I had to start spending money. I bought several e-books and some inexpensive courses. Then I bought the BIG course. The expensive one. The one I won’t name because I don’t recommend it. I had gotten laid off from my job and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to really dig in and finally make this blog happen.
It didn’t happen. I spent the next 5 months toiling away, redesigning things, rebranding, getting new hosting, creating an avatar… And it didn’t work. I had a small voice in the back of my head now saying, “It’s you. You’re just not good enough. Just quit”. Because this was the be all end all of blogging courses. And it didn’t work.
So my little oasis was crumbling. It was becoming an obvious failure and seemed like a waste of time.
Now, clearly there’s a plot twist coming or else I wouldn’t be writing this income report, right?
There is. Let’s see the income report first and then we’ll get to the plot twist.
January 2018 Blog Income Report
I’m going to show you my blog activity and what I earned for the month of January, not what actually went into my pocket. Generally, your earnings from things like affiliate sales and ads can take a couple of months or more to start hitting your bank account. But, I think it’s most helpful to see the correlation between traffic and earnings.
Total January Income:
Mediavine Ads: $575.80 ***this is only for half the month! My ads officially went up on the site on 1/15
Amazon Affiliate Sales: $41.77
Other Affiliate Sales: $0.00
Ok, so what changed? How did I go from making nothing to making $575 in 16 days?
I finally found something that taught me how to do this the right way. In August of last year, with my banged up confidence, I found this thing. It’s called Billionaire Blog Club and it saved my blog. And my confidence.
Billionaire Blog Club works for whatever stage of blogging you are in. If you’re a total blogging newbie, there are blogging “Challenges” to follow to get you started on the right foot. If you’ve been blogging for a while like I was, but you’re just not getting results, there are video courses and challenges and master classes to get you where you want to be. There’s a fantastic Pinterest book that will teach you the right way to pin so that you finally start getting more pageviews.
But, what makes Billionaire Blog Club different is the community that you become a part of when you join. Paul Scrivens, creator of Billionaire Blog Club, has created an on-line community of bloggers that has become my virtual work environment. If you work outside of the home, then you know that it’s your coworkers that will make or break your day. The members of this on-line community will become your coworkers.
At my last job, I worked in a small office with one other woman and one man. They were both just a little younger than I am. They also would bicker like children throughout the day and I would referee. They would joke that they were like brother and sister and I was the mom. That made me feel old, so we decided that I was Charlie from Party of Five, the oldest sibling taking care of the younger ones because our parents died in a car accident.
And that’s what were. Brothers and sisters at work. Sometimes bickering, but we always had each other’s backs and we rooted for each other and we laughed together and we split the misery of working in a not so great job equally among the three of us. There’s a real bond that comes from that.
The BBC community is just that, well, minus the bickering. If you are a blogger, or if you’re thinking about becoming a blogger, then you know (or you will soon know) that you become a little obsessed with blogging. You think about it all the time. You check your stats constantly. You really want to tell your friends and family all about your adventure, but when you try, they give you a sideways look that pretty much says “What is this hair brained scheme you’re talking about?”.
The Slack Community is a brother and sisterhood of people who totally get what you’re going through and are there to support you, answer questions and sometimes give you a reality check. There are members at 100k monthly page views and there are members working towards their first 100 page views. We come from all walks of life and, like Liam Neeson, we all have a special set of skills that we bring to the table. And yes, Paul Scrivens, or @scrivs as you’ll come to know him, the guy who came up with this whole thing, is there to answer questions. Tag him and he answers. Anything.
@scrivs, can you take a look at this pin design? -He answers and gives pointed feedback.
@scrivs, my boardbooster account is doing something funky. -He checks it out and helps you fix it.
@scrivs, I’m ready to throw my laptop out the window because I can’t figure out how to center the images on my blog. PLEASE HELP! -He helps. I’m not exaggerating.
What’s so great about Paul Scrivens, you’re wondering? What does he even know about blogging anyway?? Well, he has 18 active blogs. Yes. 18. And they did a combined 2 million page views in the month of January. AND the oldest of his blogs was only started in June of 2016. He runs two separate membership sites, Billionaire Blog Club and Keto Dash. He started the additional blogs when he started Billionaire Blog Club because he wanted to show that, provided you’re in a decent niche, any blog can be successful if you apply the right techniques. Are you a lifestyle blogger, like me? He has a blog about that. Are you a mommy blogger? He has a blog about that, too. Homesteading? He’s got it. Personal Finance? Yes, that too. The list of blogs goes on and on. And on.
That’s what got me to sign up for Billionaire Blog Club. After I finished the other expensive course that shall not be named, I noticed a pattern. All of the bloggers who were succesful after having taken the course, started blogging about blogging. Regardless of what niche they had been in prior, they started writing their own courses and creating ebooks about blogging.
I don’t ever want to write a Pinterest course. Beyond these income reports, which I’m writing only because I know there are people out there who are curious about blogging and if so, I want to be the one to point you in the right direction, you aren’t going to see me start selling you a course I wrote on how to make a pin or how to do affiliate sales. Because I’m still learning all of that, too. And I’m confident that I’m learning from someone who actually knows what he’s talking about and who knows what works for my niche, not just for blogs about blogging.
I consider myself to be much like Lloyd Dobler from the classic love story “Say Anything”. Lloyd says:
“I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed.”
I, like Lloyd, also have an aversion to selling things. So, rather than a sales pitch, I’ll just give you two numbers:
Pageviews July 2017 (The month prior to joining Billionaire Blog Club): 20,809
Pageviews January 2018 (5 Months after joining Billionaire Blog Club: 115,546
Because of the things I’ve learned and the encouragement I’ve gotten from BBC, I finally had enough traffic to apply to Mediavine, a premium ad network. I was accepted and the ads went up in January and I swear to God it was one of the proudest moments of my life. Here’s the message that I got from @scrivs when I shared the news:
And I’m not done. Pageviews are the foundation, but with @scrivs guidance, I’m going to conquer affiliate sales next. Cause my confidence is back and I remember now that I can do ANYTHING when I put my mind to it.
If you’re interested in starting a blog or if you have a blog that is floundering at 20k pageviews since forever, like mine was, for the love of God, join Billionaire Blog Club. I’ll see you in Slack!
PS! Update! Check out February’s Blog Income Report:
PPS! If you want to learn about what it takes to be a blogger, check out this post:
If You Liked It Then You Shoulda Put A Pin In It!