If you're new here, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my income report each month. You can simply skip to the next section if you're not new here.
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.
However, I left my day job as a financial analyst in October of 2013 and now my monthly income reports consist of the many ways I earn a living.
Many have asked why I would ever want to publicly post my income each month. Some think I'm crazy, whereas 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 at your full-time job. If it weren't for others publishing their monthly income reports, 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 actually see what areas need improvement. I use my monthly income reports as a way to track how I've done and I treat it 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 that showcases many successful bloggers who are kind enough to share their income with the public each month.
I know I say this every month, but it's the truth. Life is great now that I'm my own boss and a full-time blogger. I look forward to each and every day and it's a wonderful feeling. I truly love waking up every single morning.
Above are just a few of the reasons for 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 business income in July?
I earned $112,594.97 online in July, before expenses.
July was my best month ever, there is no doubt about that. It was my highest income month ever due to the release of my affiliate strategy course. July was also my first SIX FIGURE income month!
If you're a blogger, I recommend checking out my online course, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I share my exact strategy and tips in this very informative online course. If you're a blogger, then you NEED this course.
Page views are still down, but income is at a great level. This is why I always say that blog income is not 100% dependent on page views. I won't lie, though, I do hope that page views go back up soon. I know they will once the summer months are over.
Anyway, my business is growing, income is increasing significantly, I have tons of awesome ideas for this year, and I am just extremely excited about everything. I really love my business and I don't know where I would be without it.
The business is doing well and I'm very happy with it. I've been catching myself saying “Life is really good” a LOT lately. And, I mean it. Life is really good.
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 website domain (a $15 value) through my Bluehost link if you purchase, at least, 12 months of blog hosting. FYI, if you are asking yourself “can you make money blogging?” – my top tip is 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-hosted WordPress.
Breakout of July 2016 income – $112,594.97:
- Affiliate income – $47,054.97 total:
- Bluehost (check out my tutorial on how to start a blog) – $29,770
- Survey companies – $11,980.50
- Ebates – $1,000 (estimate as this is a tiered affiliate program)
- How To Work From Home Selling On Amazon FBA – $945.30
- MOTIF Investing – $736
- Credible – $450
- Bookkeeper Business Academy – $249.25
- Digit – $235
- Izea/SponsoredTweets – $221.35
- Make Money Proofreading By Becoming A Freelance Proofreader – $207.52
- $5 Meal Plan – $200.25
- Building A Framework – $150.00
- Transcribe Anywhere – $98.80
- 30 Days Or Less To Freelance Writing Success – $96
- Mystery shopping – $10.00
- Miscellaneous affiliates – $705 (smaller affiliate earnings from numerous products)
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course – $50,052
- Sponsorships and advertising- $14,000
- Display advertising – $1,488
- Staff writing – $0
The number above is for the month of July and before any fees and expenses (some fees and expenses that lower the amount above total around $4,700 (rounded up), which include virtual assistants, technical assistance, newsletter expenses, graphic design, PayPal fees, Stripe fees, etc., however, this does not include taxes) being taken out. Expenses were higher than usual due to costs related to creating and launching my course. After expenses and fees, I made approximately $107,895.
Please keep in mind that I work for myself when you read my monthly income report. This means I have to cover taxes (which are over 30%), health insurance, and all other benefits/expenses that an employer may provide.
Check out The Ultimate Guide To Making Money Blogging for all of the different ways you can make money through a blog.
Below are some of my other monthly online 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 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 (2013)
- $12,640 in January Income (2014)
- $23,758 in February Income – My Monthly Online Income Report (2015)
- How I Made $300,000 Online In 2015
Comparisons and 2016 online income total:
- Total income in July of 2016: $112,595
- Total income in June of 2016: $68,440
- Difference from the previous month: +44,155
- Total in 2016: $488,466
This month marks five years since I started Making Sense of Cents. Can you believe that?
I started this blog back in August of 2011, all just as a hobby. I started it as a way to talk about my paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle and difficulties dealing with my father passing away.
I never started my blog with the goal of earning an income, it was seriously just a hobby blog.
It’s crazy to think about how much everything has changed since then.
- Work for myself (and love it!)
- Travel full-time in an RV
- Love life
My blog has completely changed my life and I never thought that what I'm doing now would be my future. My dad would be super proud of me.
If you're thinking about starting a blog, DO IT! There's plenty of room for new bloggers, and you won't know what will happen unless you try. Plus, it's a ton of fun! You can sign up for my free How To Start a Successful Blog course here.
Making Sense of Cents is doing well and I'm very happy with everything.
Overall, traffic dipped slightly due to the summer (traffic always seems to go down in the summer months) and I received around 400,000 page views.
Below are several blog-related updates:
- I released my How To Start A Blog FREE Course. If you’ve been wanting to start a blog, then check this out. I recently created an email course for those who are interested in starting a blog, but haven’t made the leap yet. It's completely free, and over 3,000 people have already signed up. Thank you to everyone who has sent me kind emails about how great the course is. I don't know why I didn't do this sooner!
- Due to how well my first free course went, I am creating a free budget course as well. That should be live this month and it will be full of information, tips, worksheets, and more. Plus, it will all be free!
- I'm thinking about creating a free personal finance support group on Facebook. Would you be interested? This would be a place where everyone can talk about money freely, seek support and help, and so on.
- In April, I switched to ConvertKit. Aweber was great, but I've been hearing amazing reviews about ConvertKit from several bloggers. The switch has been going very well so far. I never really understood email marketing before, but ConvertKit makes it so easy and now I feel like I'm an expert! ConvertKit has really helped me to improve my affiliate income even though my page views have been down. The money is in your email list, for sure!
- In March, I started using BoardBooster. Tailwind was great, but I needed something that would help me save more time. BoardBooster takes a moment to set up in the beginning, but then it runs very smoothly from there. I highly recommend checking out BoardBooster and using it for your blog! I love how much less time I now spend on Pinterest. Now, I only use Tailwind as a way to schedule other bloggers' images to my board. Both are great services, so you can't go wrong choosing one (or both).
- Also, there is currently a GREAT Pinterest bonus that you receive if you purchase Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I learned my Pinterest strategy from Rosemarie at The Busy Budgeter. She is currently selling her Pinterest strategy for $46 (great value!), or you can also get it for free if you purchase Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. Rosemarie is a Pinterest consultant and helps bloggers increase their Pinterest traffic tremendously. Because I am a huge believer in how Pinterest can help you to improve your affiliate income, I asked Rosemarie to share her Pinterest strategy for my course as a guest instructor lesson. I use this same exact strategy for Pinterest, and it has helped to increase my traffic tremendously.
Also, I have received many questions recently about how I'm staying connected to the internet so that I can work and travel in my RV at the same time. I use a Verizon Mifi and I am able to stay connected pretty much anywhere with it. It really comes in handy because you can't always trust free wifi. Sometimes free wifi is slow, hard to find, or not safe. I don't know what I would do without this device!
Top new posts on Making Sense of Cents last month:
- Are You Stuck In Debt? Let’s Ditch The Cycle Of Being Broke And In Debt
- 9 Work From Home and Travel Careers
- 4 Ways To Earn Money With A Fitbit
- What To Do When You Lose Your Wallet
- Best Ways To Save Money In The Summer
- The Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course is HERE!
My Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course.
I launched Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing on July 5, 2016.
I would definitely say that my course launch was successful.
There are around 400 students currently taking the course, and I expect this to grow as I start promoting the course in additional ways, plus as affiliates for the course start promoting it.
I had a very laid back launch, where I mainly just promoted the course through an email sequence to my existing subscribers and those who signed up for the waitlist.
Having ConvertKit made promoting the course to my email list a breeze. I created a set of broadcasts to send out to my email list before the price increased, and promoted it somewhat heavily to them. I was able to schedule all of this ahead of time, segment my subscribers, and promote the course in the most of effective way. Doing it this way allowed me to spend my time more wisely when my course was in the middle of its launch.
I'm hearing great things about the course from my students, which puts a huge smile on my face. I'm really happy that everyone is loving what I created!
Are you interested in creating a course? Share in the comments!
Featured Question: What did I learn from launching my course?
I feature one question from a reader in each monthly income report. Please leave a comment below if you have a question that you would like me to answer.
I won't lie, I was overwhelmed at first when it came to creating and launching the course, but now I know that I want to launch many more courses. In fact, I already have a few ideas for others!
What I learned from creating my course:
- Launching over a holiday means that some people won't know about it. I should have either launched the course towards the end of spring or waited until the fall, but I just couldn't wait to launch it. Instead, I just launched it pretty much right when I had it ready. This most likely meant fewer sales, but I plan on increasing promotion of it again in the fall to those that may have been too busy to look into it during the busy summer months.
- Creating a course isn't as scary as it seems. Trust me, I was a little terrified when I was creating and launching Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I was afraid that no one would be interested, that no one would purchase it, and so on. Then, I talked to several other very successful course creators, and they told me that these were all normal feelings. I was so happy to hear that I was normal! Plus, now, I am extremely happy that I created my course.
- You don't need a huge launch in order to be successful. I made slightly over $50,000 from my course just in the first month. That was without a huge launch. I didn't do any webinars, podcasts, guest posts, or anything like that. Instead, I promoted the course to those that I knew were interested, and it worked!
- There are several courses on creating courses. I recommend finding one and signing up for it, or, at least, watching all of their free webinars and reading their free blog posts. There is a ton of information out there on creating a course.
- There are many online course platforms, but Teachable was for me. As a student, I have always liked Teachable in the past, so it was a no-brainer to use Teachable for my course as well.
Well, there you have it! If you're thinking about creating a course, I wish you the best of luck. I highly recommend creating a course, as it can lead to passive income, plus you can help a lot of people all at once.
Past featured questions:
- How do I increase my affiliate income?
- Do I need millions of page views a month in order to make money blogging?
- How do you build websites up to sell them?
- Do only celebrities make money through owning websites?
- How much money can a person make blogging?
- Where does blog income come from?
- Is there enough room for new bloggers to make money?
- What should a person blog about?
- How can a blogger increase their page views?
- Should my blog be self-hosted?
- How should I launch a new blog?
- What blogging tools or resources do you recommend?
- What should you do when a blog post goes viral?
- What is affiliate marketing?
My plans for my website and making money online.
Without plans and goals, it would be very hard to run a business. I believe that working towards a goal can help keep a person motivated.
Below are some of the areas I am currently working on:
- Promote more. I am doing much better at promoting my articles and I'm noticing a huge improvement. One area is still Pinterest, and it brought around 150,000 clicks to my blog just in the month of July. I would like to see this number be at 500,000 or higher by the end of the year.
- Continue learning. I took a pause in July in this area, but I plan on starting again in a month or two.
- Accept more interviews. I took part in quite a few interviews in July due to the release of my course. They were fun!
- Double my income. Yes, I said double. I would love to double 2015's income and I think it's possible considering how well 2015 ended. That means I will need to average around $53,000 a month. Currently, I am well on track with this goal! In fact, in 2015 I earned $320,888, which means that I've already made more in 2016 than I made in all of 2015!
- Create a digital product. PASS!!! I finally finished Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
- Increase my page views to 1,000,000 each month. I realize this is a superficial goal, but it's quantifiable and that's what I like about it. I would like to hit one million page views a month before the year ends. Wish me luck!
I didn't write a single staff article in the month of July. I received many emails asking me to staff write, but for the most part, I have been referring these potential clients to other people.
As you can tell, I'm taking staff writing very slowly.
Now, this doesn't mean I don't enjoy staff writing. I do enjoy it, but only in limited quantities.
I believe that making this change and focusing more on my blog instead of freelancing has really helped me. Ever since I made the shift to focus on my blog and my own business, I have seen an increase in the amount of income I am earning as well as a better work-life balance. I think this is because I am a lot less scattered now that I have one main focus.
- How To Start a Successful Freelance Writing Career
- So You Want to Be a Freelance Writer?
- How To Become a Virtual Assistant
- What Does a Virtual Assistant Do?
Overall, I earned $47,055 in affiliate income in July, as outlined above.
Affiliate income decreased a little in July, and that is because I was so focused on my course. I don’t think I spent any time on affiliate income, so everything was very passive. I am excited to learn that I can still earn this amount of income each month from effective affiliate marketing strategies without spending any time on it!
I'm, of course, a huge fan of affiliate income. It's something that I really love due to how passive it can feel. It makes full-time traveling much more enjoyable when I know I can bring in an income while having a ton of fun exploring new places.
My affiliate strategy course finally went live on July 5, 2016. I've already had around 400 people sign up for the course, and I'd love to have you as well!
I recommend checking out my online course for bloggers, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I earn around $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.
In this course, there are 6 modules, over 30 lessons, several worksheets, bonuses, an extremely helpful and exclusive Facebook group, and more. I go through everything that you need to know about affiliate marketing, such as:
- What affiliate marketing is and how it works
- Why affiliate marketing is great
- The exact steps I've taken to earn over $300,000 from a single blog post
- How to pick the right affiliate products to promote
- How to increase conversions
- How to build trust and not lose followers
- Required disclosures that you need to know about
- The one major tool you need for affiliate marketing
- Different strategies to use to promote your affiliate products
- How to use Pinterest to succeed at affiliate marketing (yes, this includes the newest Pinterest affiliate rules!)
And much, much more!
This course is anything and everything about affiliate marketing. This course is perfect for you whether you are a new blogger or if you've been blogging for years, no matter what topic your blog is about, where you live, and so on. I wrote this course so that it would benefit everyone, and there is so much to learn from it!
How was July for you? Are you interested in earning income online?
How To Start A Blog FREE Email Course
In this free course, I show you how to create a blog easily, from the technical side (it's easy - trust me!) all the way to earning your first income and attracting readers. Join now!