Hey all! I’m back with another income report to share with you today. I started doing income reports last month, as a way to be more transparent about my online business and hopefully shed some light on ways that you can grow your own business, too.
In most other fields of work, you have the opportunity to “Google” what a typical salary is for that type of career. But if you’re an online entrepreneur? You’re faced with a guessing game. You’re left to wonder how much money you can actually make online, and if you’re like me, you have to spend years figuring out how to do it. So, with these monthly income and traffic reports, I hope to answer some of your questions and nudge your own business or blog in a direction that brings you the most benefits.
So, July. Let’s get to it, shall we?
- Web Design + Blog Coaching Clients: $3,928.34
- Affiliate Commissions: $4,998.30
- Google Adsense: $198.14
- BlogHer Ads: $101.24
Total Income: $9,226.02
- TNC Contributors: $220
- FB Ads for Launching eCourse: $197
- Independent Contractors: $135
- Credit Card/PayPal Transaction Fees: $108.81
- Screenflow*: $99
- CAOC E-Course Installment Payment: $97
- Mailchimp: $75
- Leadpages: $67
- BoardBooster*: $60.16
- Edgar Social Media Scheduler: $49
- Envato Plugins*: $40
- Freshbooks* Invoicing Software: $29.95
- MyFonts.com: $29
- Facebook Ads: $24.47
- Creative Market* Graphics: $21
- Misc. Business Purchases on Amazon*: $21.16
- GoDaddy.com Domain Registrations: $20.34
- App Sumo (Scrivener): $20
- Google Apps*: $12.50
Total Expenses: $1,326.39 (Anything with an * next to it is an affiliate link)
Net Profit: $7,899.63
As you can see, my income this month declined by about $2,500 compared to last month. It’s also the first month this year that I hit below $10k. Gasp! But I’m not fretting about this because it was actually all planned.
As I mentioned in last month’s income report, I am changing my business model, which is the reason for this decline. Previously, a majority of my income came from working with blog and web design clients. Now, I’m no longer taking one-on-one clients and instead focusing on selling educational products for bloggers and entrepreneurs, such as eCourses and eBooks. So, in July, I stopped taking one-on-one clients, but hadn’t yet come out with a product to sell, meaning I didn’t have a whole lot of money coming in.
Even though my income was less than usual, I was really happy to have a month of less work, as it gave me the perfect foundation to work on and launch my newest eCourse, Pinfinite Growth.
What’s the deal with my high affiliate earnings?
Good question. During the previous month, June, I earned my highest affiliate commission month to date (at about $1,700). So, you can imagine my surprise when I discovered that I’d be earning $5,000 in affiliate sales in July. I hate using words like “luck” or “blessings” in reference to business, as it makes it seem like people become successful by sheer chance (meaning, you can’t accomplish the same success unless you’re struck by a magic beam of light). BUT earning that $5k in affiliate sales, during the exact month I was transitioning to an entirely different business model, was the closest thing to “luck” that I could have gotten. It took a lot of the pressure off of me to feel like I needed to accept more clients, especially as I was trying to stop client work altogether.
I actually have some specific suggestions and ideas that I think will help you replicate what I do if you’re interested in earning more from affiliate programs. Coming to a blog post near you soon! 😉
Some awesome tools I added to my arsenal
I’m always on the hunt for new things that will help me run my business more efficiently and enjoyably. I also seem to sign up for a new eCourse almost every month, because I’m a learning addict and eCourses are a lot cheaper (and likely more applicable) than an MBA. 😉 Here are a few tools I’m happy to have found in July:
1. FB Ads for Launching
This eCourse walks you step-by-step into how to create profitable Facebook ads. I haven’t finished it yet, but it’s been really helpful so far. Facebook ads can get real complicated real fast and will not deliver the best results unless you implement some know-how into your ads. The teacher, Farideh, does a great job of breaking things down very simply. I created my first, real ads last week and so far, have gotten 2 conversions (about $350 in sales) for less than $7 spent on ads. This eCourse has literally paid for itself already!
I’d heard of sOOoOoo many people who use LeadPages, but didn’t feel like investing in it until I had a solid understanding of how I’d use it. LeadPages has a ton of features and is a very robust program for collecting email addresses and creating sign-up forms and I have really enjoyed it so far. If you’re looking to get more email sign ups, host webinars, etc, then LeadPages is a very solid investment.
Screenflow is a video-editing software that also has the ability to record your screen. It’s such a simple feature, but there are SO MANY possibilities for its use. Two things I’ve been using it for recently:
- My eCourse. I create keynote presentations for the modules of my eCourse, then I can use Screenflow to record the presentation while I speak over it. This is the format I’ve seen many other eCourses presented in and I find that it’s a really professional and easy-to-understand format to teach your course.
- To create video walk-throughs for web design clients. Previously, when I was finished creating a website for someone, I’d either email them about how to use specific functions or jump on the phone to explain things. Now, I can just record a video of me literally showing my clients who to update their website, with my voice explaining everything in the background. Then, I just share the private video link with them and they have lifetime tutorials about how to update their site. If you’re a web designer, I highly recommend doing this.
Edgar is a my new favorite social media scheduling tool. The reason I love it is because it allows you to create a library of social media promotions, which it will cycle through once your most recent promotions have been sent. So, if you create a week’s worth of social media promotions, you don’t have to worry about them simply expiring like with most social media schedulers. They’ll just be added to the back of your library and will go back into rotation later on. It saves me TONS of time and I have seen an increase in engagement and followers since using it.
My traffic took quite a leap from June to July. Increasing from 72,000 users to 88,000 (+23%) and 159,000 pageviews to 208,000 (+31%). One of the biggest reasons for this is because I have upped my game on Pinterest and it has been paying off. It’s also why my first eCourse, Pinfinite Growth, is devoted to sharing my Pinterest strategy (because it’s something that I know just works).
What I’m doing differently in August
So, like I mentioned last month, I’m not taking on new clients! I’ve loved working with clients — I really have — but one-on-one time was starting to wear on me. It has been SO weird (and honestly, awesome) to look at my email inbox and not see it filled with client requests. I probably get about five times less emails than I did before.
This month (August), I also launched my first-ish eCourse (I say “first-ish” because I led a smaller eCourse almost two years ago), called Pinfinite Growth, which is very new-to-me and exciting. I haven’t “officially” announced it here on the blog yet (tomorrow!), but have mentioned it on social media and to my email list. Things have been going great so far and I’m already looking forward to writing a thorough behind-the-scenes email about exactly what I did during my launch.
Lastly, I’m removing all of the ads from my site. I’m working on a post about why I made that decision, so stay tuned for that! The only problem is that certain ad networks have lengthy contracts, so it’s not quite so easy to just remove them altogether. Soon. 🙂