Important: Preamble before profits
Despite being a personal finance website and blog, I’ve hesitated to regularly provide specific earnings. Each time I’ve shared writing revenue — at 6 and 12 months — it’s taken me some time to deliberate whether I should. My revenue isn’t everything, and frankly, it’s been steadily declining since last summer. But while I made less revenue, I saw more traffic — the important metric to me.
Many personal finance blogs share their earnings on a regular, monthly basis with their readers. My fear in regularly doing so may come from an irrational place, but I worry that sharing this information is like eating junk food; the syrupy sweet taste goes down easily, but it has a vapid nutritional value. Last month, I decided to share those income stats and many readers liked seeing how the website was helping my financial goals. Hope these stats help in your own blogging/writing journey!
August 2014 — Blog income report
August was a rough month for earnings. Unfortunately, the continued slump and decline in earnings has not stopped. At one point in January and February of this year, I was making over $5000 per month from the site. Now, I’m lucky to be making over $500. It’s definitely changed how I budget for the future, and I wish there was something I could do to change the situation. Thankfully, my traffic continues to stay strong, along with social media growth. I crossed over 1,400 followers on Twitter, which is a tremendous milestone for me.
$485 (Up $69 compared to last month)
Again, affiliate sales led for income. Buoyed by two credit cards, Barclaycard Arrival and US Airways, I saw a slight increase in earnings this month. Over the last few months, LinkOffers has steadily cut the commission on credit cards. Consequently, this is much of the reason why these numbers slumped since the beginning of the year. I have not been regularly advertising affiliate deals and links, which may also be contributing to the slide and stagnation of revenue. I have some work to do here.
$40.47 (Down $207 compared to last month)
Last month I had a hugely viral article that brought in hundreds of thousands of visitors. It was unreal. That spike in traffic artificially cause Google AdSense revenue to expand. Now, it’s back to more realistic values. This value tends to track around $50 per month. For August, I ended up moving an ad space to the beginning of articles to try to keep ads highly visible. Thus far, I’m not seeing any major revenue boost from this switch.
$0.20 (Negligible change)
Somebody mentioned that Amazon’s Associates program may have taken a big dive due to the Smile program. This Amazon initiative encourages shoppers to choose a charity to support. By selecting one, a percentage of your purchases go to that charity. It’s a great program, but it looks like it may remove your referral link. This may be reducing any commission possibilities.
Total August 2014 Earnings: $525.55 (Down $139.53 compared to last month)
Last month I mentioned that I’d like to begin reviewing books, films, and media that help diversify the conversation about personal finance. I decided to start with a super ambitious read called All the Presidents’ Bankers by Nomi Prins. I’m about halfway through this impressive tome of financial and banking history. Thus far, I’m loving it, and can’t wait to share it with you all! Likewise, I will be writing a review of a new documentary, Rich Hill. This film is about severe poverty in a small, midwestern town. Look forward to those soon.
As for revenue, I’m not working actively enough to change the financial situation each month. That’s something I need to work on. I’ll likely revamp and republish a couple articles on some of my favorite affiliate links.
Thanks for reading! If you’ve got questions, comments, or advice, I’d love to hear it below!