April wasn’t about breaking new ground but rather about preparing for the future. Abby and I spent the month preparing for the launch of her eBook. Fortunately it wasn’t me writing over 170 pages and 28 chapters. I had the much easier job of preparing a launch strategy and working through technical issues. Next week you’ll get a behind the scenes look into our launch (including income) but for now make sure you stop by Abby’s site and take a look at her eBook:
If you’re not familiar with my story you can read the “About” page, but earlier this year my wife Abby asked me to manage the business side of her blog. My responsibilities include all the technical aspects, financial progress, and even some overall big-picture strategy. I gladly accepted and in the process decided to start this site in order to track our progress.
Why An Income Report?
1. Accountability. Knowing we have to publish our numbers every month is a great way to light a fire under us. It also gives you, the readers, the chance to hold us accountable to our goals and raise any issues you might see in our businesses. Abby and I are pretty good at holding each other accountable but these income reports take that to a whole new (and potentially embarrassing) level!
2. Reflect, Learn, and Pivot. It’s one thing to have ideas in my head about how the business is going, but one of the best ways for me to learn is collect the data and present it to my readers. By paying attention to different metrics including web traffic and income, I’ll start to get a sense for what works and what doesn’t. This learning experience is important because it will provide an opportunity for me to make changes and adjustments to improve the business moving forward.
3. Teach. My hope is that you can take something away from these reports. While we have a long way to go in order to do this online thing full time, it might be encouraging for someone a few steps behind us in the process to see that it is possible to earn actual dollars online. Even more than encouragement, I hope these income reports teach you something you can immediately apply to your business. Without transparency in our business these teaching moments would diminish.
Unlike other some other income reports your see online, we don’t make a ton of money yet. Abby just started in January 2013 so we’re giving you the opportunity to follow our journey from “nothing” to a full-time, self-sustaining business. Get in on the ground floor and join us in our journey. These early stages of our business are critical and the mistakes and lessons will be many! Don’t make the same early mistakes we do.
(*asterisk denotes affiliate link)
April was spent hidden away, out of sight, preparing for June 10th. You wouldn’t believe how much goes into writing and launching an eBook! Maybe we went overboard with our launch strategy but this was our first time so we wanted to do it right! It remains to be seen how it turns out.
Let’s get right into the numbers…
- Google Adsense – $633
- Evernote Essentials Affiliate* – $108
- Amazon Associates – $128
- PicMonkey Affiliate*- $16
- Restored 316 Themes Affiliate* – $9
Total Income: $894
- Synthesis Hosting – $67
- Mailchimp* – $65
- Fizzle.co* – $35
- Viral Tag – $12
- Adobe Creative Cloud – $11
Total Expenses: $190
Net Profit: $704
Our income has gone down for the second straight month. I’m ok with that. In February when we netted over $2,000 it was largely due to one blog post that did extremely well. It was great but I knew it was a mountain peak and not a steady plateau. We learned a lot from that post and have been working hard to re-create the success but there is always a significant lag. The hard work we put in now may not pay off for many months. We are certainly feeling those effects right now with a very lackluster April. To be honest, we’re hoping all our hard work in April will pay off in June.
- 84,217 Unique Visitors
- 101,688 Visits
- 182,304 Page Views
- 77.67% New Visitors
Not much change here. I’m thinking next month I’ll do away with a few of the metrics. I’ll keep tracking page views and unique visitors but I think reporting on all four metrics here is overkill.
There was no real big content push in April. Abby’s creative juices were flowing into her eBook more so than her blog in the month of April.
Email Subscriber Statistics
- 932 New Subscribers
- 3,657 Existing Subscribers
- 4,589 Total Subscribers
The changes we made in February keep paying off! I’m thrilled with the rate our email list is growing. This list has been incredibly valuable to us as we went through the eBook launch process. You can’t always rely on people coming back to your blog, but if you have their email address you can always reach out to them en-masse. Overlook email lists to your detriment. By the way, we LOVE Mailchimp*. Every day I find a new feature that blows me away. With some web apps I can’t wait to get out of them. With Mailchimp I leave it open in my browser all day long. The ease of use and design factor is the best in the industry.
If you want to read about the details of our email opt-in strategy look at the “Email Subscriber Statistics” section of our February Traffic and Income Report.
RPM shows you how much you make from every 1,000 page views on your blog. It’s commonly used to measure the performance of your ads, but I like to use it to measure the overall effectiveness of a site’s income generation.
This number needs to approach $10. Talk about not living up to the potential of our traffic! The only way we are going to hit $10 RPM on a consistent basis is by maximizing multiple revenue streams. I need to setup ad layering, we can be better about our affiliate relationships, and most importantly… We need to sell our own product! That last one is happening right now so we’ll see how the June numbers play out with Abby’s eBook launch.
and to recap our income…