This is my first blog income report showing my blog’s income, blog stats, start-up expenses, what I did in my first month of blogging and my goals for May.
I went into blogging being fully aware that it could take a very long time before I made a penny back for my time and expenses. I blog because I love to help people and I have a further reach by having a blog. Monetizing my blog is a goal of mine so I can keep doing what I love and have my blog expenses covered and eventually help out with my family’s expenses. I was a little worried my blog income reports would say $0 income for a long time making my reports uneventful.
My reasons for writing my blog income reports
Originally, my biggest reason for choosing to post my blog income reports was because I was encouraged to start a blog by reading Caroline Vencil’s blog income reports. I made a decision to write my own blog income reports from the very beginning. I wanted to pay it forward and help others who are thinking of starting a blog.
Now, I read a lot more blog income reports and find that they are so helpful for bloggers to read. They help bloggers to see other blogs income and expenses, strategies and goals that other bloggers have, and what tools bloggers like to use and find helpful. In general, I find them so exciting to read and always have a takeaway from reading other blog’s income reports.
My final reason to post my blog income reports is to keep myself accountable. I was a nurse for a long time and still like to chart meticulously. I want my income reports to be an accurate picture of “health” for my blog, for good or for bad. This will allow me to see more clearly where my blog needs to improve.
How I got started with monetizing my blog
I took a course for new bloggers called Building a Framework. During the course, I learned the basics of how to make income from blogging. I couldn’t have ads because I was just launching my blog and didn’t have any pageviews to be approved by any ad company. Being a new blogger, I felt I couldn’t get any sponsored posts and it was too soon to develop my own products. Then, I learned about affiliate sales which are great for the beginning blogger. My first affiliate was Amazon because they are a good fit for any niche. Then, I started to search for affiliate programs for companies that I know and love.
I read a lot of posts from bloggers in all kinds of niches. I kept coming across a fantastic course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing and bought the course a few days after I launched my blog. It was so great that I couldn’t stop reading and applying the lessons, and went through it quickly. I’m so glad I took Michelle’s course and recommend it to anyone that plans to monetize their blog through affiliate sales. Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing allowed me to move forward with my affiliate marketing with confidence. I applied my newly learned skills to my blog and social media right away.
My blog stats and income report for my first month of blogging
I was happy with my pageviews considering I launched my blog with one blog post and only had 4 blog posts up for the month. A lot of love and effort goes into each post, though. I will maintain writing 1 blog post a week so I can do all the other exciting things I want to do for my readers and continue with my studies for blogging and my aromatherapy certification. Also, a blogger needs to devote time to marketing through social media and networking with companies and other bloggers.
My goal for the month was 10 subscribers and I had 12 people subscribe on my blog launch day. 23 subscribers for the month made me very happy.
Social media stats: Facebook- 38, Twitter- 7, Instagram- 242, Pinterest- 45
I came into blogging with no experience with Pinterest and Twitter. They are still a work in progress. Also, I had just started my Facebook page. As for Instagram, my numbers were the best because I had started an Instagram account 7 months ago showing some of my recipes.
Total blog income for April 2017: $36.00
This income report is based on what I earned and received in April 2017.
Affiliate sale: CoSchedule $36.00 (I made this sale from sharing my affiliate link in one of my blogging Facebook groups)
CoSchedule normally gives credit for the next year of using their service for affiliate sales. Since I had just paid for a year of service, they kindly offered to pay me right away for my affiliate sale.
My expenses from getting my blog to launch and my first month of blogging
I want to share with you everything I did to get my blog started through my first month of blogging. This expense report will be big because I put a lot into getting my blog started. It is possible to start and launch a blog for as little as $3.95 a month through Siteground right now. Also, there are a lot of free tools out there for bloggers. So please don’t let my numbers scare you.
I saw all of my expenses as an investment and wanted to buy tools and courses from the very beginning to make my blog run well. I come from the mindset that I had paid for 4 years of nursing school to have a career as a nurse so I was willing to spend a tiny fraction of that to start my new career as a blogger. A career that allows me to be a stay at home mom, work on my own terms, and an income that has no ceiling. My income was capped as a nurse. No matter how well I did, I could not make more than what I was making because I was too experienced and at the top of my pay grade.
A breakdown of my expenses
(The following companies and courses in purple are affiliate links.)
Tools and operating expenses:
Logo Tournament (to have someone design my logo, done 2 years ago): $375.00
GoDaddy (to buy my domain name, aromamama, purchased 2 years ago): $1,000.00
GoDaddy (domain name renewal for the last 2 years): $29.98
Siteground Grow Big: $95.40 for the year (Siteground is 60% off right now, less than what I paid!)
StudioPress Genesis Framework: $59.95
Blog Finance Spreadsheets: $24.00
Gravity Forms Developer License: $149.25
OptinMonster Pro: $278.40 for the year
CoSchedule Solo Marketing: $360.00 for the year (new users can get a free trial)
Social Warfare Pro: $29.00
TrademarkPlus (to file my trademark application and a logo search of federal, state, and common laws): $229.90
USPTO (trademark application fee): $275.00
ConvertKit: $0 (still in my free month trial)
Total for blogging tools and startup: $2,980.88
Book Boss: $197.00
The Ultimate Startup Bundle from Ultimate Bundles (the USB bundle is no longer available, but any blogger can become an affiliate by clicking on this link and get discounts and potentially make affiliate sales on future bundles): $97.00
Elite Blog Academy: $797.00
The Daily Productivity Guide: $47.00
Group Board Master: $0 (Caroline Vencil gave this to me as a bonus for signing up for Elite Blog Academy through her affiliate link; my readers can get $20 off this course with coupon code “20OFF”)
Building a Framework: $50.00
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: $197.00
Activate (registration fee for my first blogging conference this September): $100.00
Total for my blogging education: $1,485.00
My total expenses for startup and an education to re-career to be a professional blogger: $4,465.88
Looking at the big picture, spending less than $5K to have a new business and career is a really great deal! This includes having a website built, branded, trademarked, operating expenses paid for a year, some of the best blogging tools in the business, and my education to be a professional blogger.
My blogging goals for May:
- Finish Unit 1 and start on Unit 2 in Elite Blog Academy.
- Complete my free course through ConvertKit called Product Creation Masterclass.
- Get my resource library up and running for my subscribers.
My evergreen goals are to create pillar posts using FOCUS and to network with other bloggers. I figured out that about 60% of my blog traffic came from other bloggers. Networking with bloggers has been very rewarding and one of the unexpected perks of blogging.
I hope you enjoyed reading my first income report and how I got started with affiliate sales. Please Share, Pin, or Tweet this post.