If you're new here, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my online income report each month. If you're not new here then you can just skip to the next section 🙂
This all started out as my extra income report because in the beginning it was all about the money I was earning from my side jobs. In my side income reports from the beginning, I included all of the income I made except for what I made at my day job (that was a fixed amount and boring anyways).
However, I left my day job as a financial analyst in October of 2013 and now my monthly income report consist of the many ways I make a living each month.
Many people have asked why I would ever want to publicly post my income each month. Some think I'm crazy, and some are glad I'm open about what I'm doing. Whatever you think, I enjoy publishing my monthly online income reports and I share them publicly for three main reasons:
- Before I started blogging, I knew nothing about side hustling and making money online. I didn't think side jobs were worth the effort, and I thought the only way to significantly increase your income was through raises and promotions at your full-time job. If it weren't for others publishing their monthly income reports each month, I don't know if I would have ever tried side hustling. I want to help show others the positives in side hustling and how it can change a person's life. There are many different ways to make money online, and I like to share my story each month to help motivate others to improve their financial situation by making more money.
- Secondly, I like to publish my income reports because it's a way for me to look back, learn from my mistakes and see what areas need improvement. I use my monthly income reports as a way to track how I've done, sort of like a journal.
- Lastly, I like to show others that making side money is possible, and that there are many legitimate ways to make money from your home. If you are looking for information on the many ways to make money online, I published the article Monthly Income Report Roundup – My Favorite Income Bloggers that showcases many awesome bloggers who are kind enough to share their income with the public each month. Just a few years ago, I didn't think making money online was possible at all. Now, I realize that it is possible!
I know I say this every month, but it's the truth. Life is great now that I'm my own boss. I look forward to each and every day and it's an amazing thing. I truly love waking up each morning.
Above is exactly why I enjoy publishing my monthly income reports. I like to show others that you don't have to hate your job and hate your life. You can make changes to your life and make money in a way that allows you to truly enjoy the life you are living. I'm not saying that you have to LOVE your job, I'm just saying that your job should at least allow you to do what you like to do outside of work (whether that be spending time with loved ones, painting, hiking, etc.).
How was my online income in May?
May was another great income month. If you don't account for recent months in which I sold a few websites, this was my best month ever. It was also my best month ever for affiliate income.
After what seemed like almost 1.5 years of monthly income reports (except for recent months where I sold a few of my websites) where I felt somewhat stuck (several readers have even emailed me asking why my income hasn't grown since I quit my day job), it's nice to know that things are picking up and I actually believe that my income will continue to grow through the rest of 2015.
Yes, I realize I'm earning a good income, but self-employment can be very unstable so I would prefer to see things improving. I've seen others go down just as quickly as they go up, so I'm trying my hardest right now to continually improve my business.
It's still very crazy to think about the income I made in May. I never thought I would be making over $20,000 a month, and here I am.
I'm NOT saying that to brag. I know there are many others who are thinking about blogging and freelancing but they don't think it's possible to earn an income. Blogging isn't a get rich quick scheme, but it is very possible to earn money through your blog.
Honestly, when I would read income reports from other bloggers years ago, I was always extremely surprised to see how much they were earning and I never thought I would be able to earn a similar amount.
Well, it turns out that it is possible! Many have asked me if it's possible for them to reach a crazy goal too, and I definitely think it is. If you have a dream and work hard, you never know what positive outcome may come from it.
I've always been very excited about my business, but I am more excited than ever for the future. I have so many plans and everything is going very well.
I couldn't be happier.
Also, I plan on publishing a “Day In The Life” post about my average work day and possibly even work week. Are there any questions you have for me about my schedule that I should include?
Anyway, in May I earned $22,735 in business income, before expenses.
If you are interested in starting a blog of your own, I created a tutorial that will help you start a blog of your own for cheap, starting at only $3.49 per month (this low price is only through my link) for blog hosting. In addition to the low pricing, you will receive a free blog domain (a $15 value) through my Bluehost link if you purchase at least 12 months of blog hosting. FYI, you want to be self-hosted. This is essential if you want to monetize your blog as you will appear more professional and this will help you monetize your blog tremendously. My blogging income did not take off until after I switched to self-hosting.
- How To Make Money Blogging
- How I Make Working From Home Work For Me
- How To Become Financially Stable and Keep The Job You Love
- Becoming a Work-Life Balancing Master
The number above is for the month of May and before any fees and expenses (some fees and expenses that lower the amount above total around $2,100, which include virtual assistants/staff writers for my other websites, technical assistance on my websites, newsletter expenses, PayPal fees, etc., however, this does not include taxes) being taken out. After expenses and fees, I made approximately $20,635.
Below are some of my other monthly side income reports. I publish an online income update every month but only included some of them below as it would be a very long list. If you head on over to my extra income page you can find all of my monthly income reports from the past few years.
- $672 extra in May (2012)
- $6,523 in January Extra Income (2013)
- $11,927 in October Income – I Finally Left My Job
- $12,640 in January Income (2014)
- $23,758 in February Income – My Monthly Online Income Report (2015)
- $32,474 in April – My Monthly Online Income Report
Making Sense of Cents is still doing well and I still love blogging 🙂
I had a new homepage designed which you can see here. Let me know what you think!
Page views have stalled in recent months, but I'm hoping to find new ways to promote my blog. I have been slacking when it comes to blog promotion lately so lets hope this changes!
I still need to go through many of my posts here on Making Sense of Cents and fix the formatting, change the pictures to Pinterest-worthy images, and more. I have only done around 15% of my posts so that means I still have a lot more to go! I actually didn't work on any of this in May as I forgot yet again.
Top new posts on Making Sense of Cents last month:
- 75+ Ways To Make Extra Money
- Living Life To The Fullest Is Something Everyone Should Start Doing
- We’re Now Saving Over $7,000 A Year By Becoming A One Car Family
- Stop Using These 6 Ridiculous Excuses For Not Saving Money
- Is Being House Poor Limiting You?
- How To Control Your Summer Cooling Costs
- Identity Theft Impacts Millions Each Year, Could You Be Next?
- Do You Have An Emergency List For Your Family?
- Money Statistics That May Scare You
- How I Prepared to Quit My 9-5 to Do What I Love and Travel the World (Whenever I Want)
How do I feel after selling three of my websites?
I have been asked by a few readers how I feel now that I am down three websites.
Well, I feel great!
I still do not regret my decision and I believe this was the best decision for my business. I now have much more free time and I do think having more time to devote to more important areas of my business is what is helping me grow my income.
Just in case you are new here, I sold some of my websites so that I can spend more time on Making Sense of Cents. I have many plans for Making Sense of Cents, and those websites on the side were not exactly at the top of my to-do list. I was being lazy with the other sites and my heart was not in them.
Featured Question: Do only celebrities make money through owning websites?
For this monthly income report and all future income reports, I will be including at least one featured question from a reader.
Recently, I received very similar questions from a few different readers.
They all believed that only celebrities or somewhat famous people could make money blogging, and they were surprised that others, such as non-famous people like myself, have been able to make money through blogging.
While making a living through blogging isn’t easy, it definitely is possible whether you are famous or just a regular person.
No, you do not have to be a famous celebrity. All of the bloggers I know are not celebrities (sorry guys, you're all famous to me though!).
My plans for my website, online income, and making money online:
- Create a product to sell – I am slowing preparing to create an ebook. This summer is a crazy one for me though, so I will most likely not be able to devote time to it until the fall of 2015.
- Promote more – Pinterest alone brought around 59,000 clicks to my blog just in the month of May. I have been stuck at this level, but I'm still happy. Just a few months ago I was only receiving a few hundred visits a month from Pinterest, so being at this level still feels crazy. Some bloggers receive millions of hits a month from Pinterest and it would be amazing to be at that level one day.
- Accept more interviews. – I wasn't too active with interviews in May. May was a busy month and June is even busier so I don't think this will improve until a few months from now.
- Stop being shy – This is one of my goals for 2015. I am such a shy person, and it's something I need to work on if I want to grow my business.
Staff writing, blog, and social media management.
In May, I had one main staff writing job that I worked on. I plan on writing several articles for them in June which will most likely make June my highest income month for staff writing in a long time.
Blog and social media management is still a service I enjoy providing to my clients. I plan on keeping the clients I currently have but I am no longer expanding this service to new clients due to time constraints though.
My goal right now is to further grow the sites I currently manage and own, spend more time on my blog/website coaching service, and grow my income here so that I can be more of my own boss. This will mean that I will be less diversified as most of my income will be coming from this website and related services, but I do think this is what I am truly after with my business.
Last month was my best month for affiliate income yet. I earned around $14,000 in affiliate income just in the month of May.
I'm still sort of slapping myself in the face for not trying affiliate programs sooner.
I won't see the payments that I earned in May until July and/or August for most of the affiliate programs I am in, so you won't see those amounts reflected in my monthly income reports until then.
My main form of affiliate income is through Bluehost with my How To Start A WordPress Blog On Bluehost tutorial. However, I am looking to diversify my affiliate income and I have been researching other affiliate programs so that everything isn't so reliant on Bluehost. I have been doing somewhat well with diversifying my affiliate income so far though, with around $3,000 last month coming from other affiliate programs.
EDIT July, 2016: I recommend checking out my online course for bloggers, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I earn over $50,000 a month through affiliate marketing and I share my exact strategy and tips in this very informative online course. If you're a blogger, then you NEED this course.
Breakout of the actual payments I received in May ($22,735, before expenses):
- Staff writing – $1,000
- Managing websites and social media for clients – $2,515
- Blog coaching and consulting – $1,315
- Website-related (From the 3 websites I own – advertising and partnerships) – $7,205
- Affiliate income (from Bluehost (main source), Republic Wireless, etc.) – $10,700
- Selling items from our home – $0
- Miscellaneous (not related to blogging and online income) – $0
- Mystery shopping – $0
When you see my monthly income each month please keep in mind that I work for myself. This means I have to cover taxes (which are over 30%), health insurance, and all other benefits/expenses that an employer may provide.
Comparisons and 2015 online income total (before taxes):
- Total extra income for May: $22,735
- Income in April: $34,174
- Difference: -11,439
- Total in 2015: $111,214
How did you do in May? What are your extra/business/online income goals? Why do you work towards making extra money?
If you are interested in starting a blog of your own, I created a tutorial that will help you start a blog of your own for cheap, starting at only $3.49 per month (this low price is only through my link) for blog hosting. In addition to the low pricing, you will receive a free blog domain (a $15 value) through my Bluehost link if you purchase at least 12 months of blog hosting. FYI, you want to be self-hosted. This is essential if you want to monetize your blog as you will appear more professional and this will help you monetize your blog tremendously.
This post contains affiliate links. All opinions and statements are 100% mine and links are only placed to help you with your own blogging journey.
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