This is my 2nd income statement. If you missed my 1st income statement, just click here to check it out.
As I mentioned in that one, I’ll be publishing these quarterly.
So this is for the 2nd quarter of 2020; April-June. Those months of 2020 have been pretty challenging for much of the world. Luckily, being homebound has meant people have plenty of time to surf the web looking for solutions to their problems.
So many websites, including mine, have done well during this time. Let’s get into the details.
GROSS REVENUE – $25,594
Generally speaking, my income does go up from month to month, but there have been occasional dips and spikes.
Quarter 2 was up 37% from quarter 1. Quarter 1 had a gross income of $18,657. I was able to get ads on my 3rd and 4th websites during this time although especially in the case of the 4th site (my hot tub site), the ad revenue had only barely been going when Q2 ended.
My YouTube channel has earned a few pennies, but I should be eligible for ads on it sometime in the next 2 months.
So here’s looking forward to Q3!
Now, let’s break that down by month, category of income, and then by the website (remember, I have 4 websites, and also recently started a YouTube channel for one of those others).
Gross income was $6,787.08
Gross income was $8,343.65
Gross income was $10,463.80
As you can see, the month over month increase was pretty good! All 3 months were also a fair amount better than any of the 3 previous months.
Blogging Income by Category for Q2 2020
Ads on my websites – $11,154.54
If you’re keeping score at home, that’s an increase in ad revenue of 106% over Q1!
As I mentioned above, in Q2, I was able to add my 3rd website (all about grocery stores and my experience working for Whole Foods Market 20+ years) and my 4th website (all about hot tubs) to Mediavine who controls all the ads on my sites.
The grocery site has grown the fastest and is doing great on ads. The hot tub site got added in mid-June, so it only barely contributed to the ad income.
Again, here’s looking forward to Q3!
One thing that’s interesting to look at is the RPM, or revenue for every 1,000 visitors to my sites.
Using Google Adsense for your ads, you’d be lucky to earn $6.00 per 1,000 visitors. Here’s what I did in Q2 for each site in terms of RPM:
Middle Class Dad – $24.11
Kitchen Appliance HQ – $19.77
The Grocery Store Guy – $20.50
Hot Tub Owner HQ– $26.49
As you can see, the hot tub site earns the most per 1,000 visitors. So eventually, as my traffic grows (it’s by far the smallest of my 4 sites), it will become the top ads earner.
That’s due in large part to the demographics of who visits a site about hot tubs. Boomers with money, if I just say it like it is. And advertisers want to be in front of people like that.
Ads breakdown by website
Middle Class Dad – $5,003.68
Kitchen Appliance HQ – $2,621.93
The Grocery Store Guy – $2,716.63
Hot Tub Owner HQ – $811.43 (got added mid-June)
Amazon Associates Affiliate Income – $2,184.35
Again, if you’re keeping score at home, you’ll know that’s also up quite a bit from Q1.
Q1 saw Amazon at $948.67, so Q2 skyrocketed by 130%. Ironically, this site, Middle Class Dad, seems to be decreasing in Amazon sales, but my other sites keep getting better and better.
My YouTube channel, linked to the hot tub site, should also eventually do pretty well on Amazon.
Here’s the Amazon breakdown by website:
Middle Class Dad – $570.94 (down 6% from Q1)
Kitchen Appliance HQ – $407.74 (up 59% from Q1)
The Grocery Store Guy – $0 (this site is currently almost exclusively monetized with ads)
Hot Tub Owner HQ – $1,194.57 (up 1281% from Q1 as the traffic started to kick in)
Other Affiliate Income – $564.30
I use a number of other affiliate networks with small, but varying degrees of success.
I generate very small amounts of revenue from the following affiliate networks:
- Max Bounty
- Commission Junction/CJ
- Share a Sale
- Impact Radius
As I mentioned last time, I got suspended from Clickbank in June 2020 for high refunds.
They never even told me which product I was promoting that was getting high refunds. They also never gave me a warning. I just tried to log in one day and got a vague message my account had been suspended.
Anyway, I did make some decent money from Clickbank, but I don’t want to work for a company that would treat their partners that way, so I’m not likely to be back when the 90 days are up.
A couple of the individual brands that have affiliate programs that I use:
- GQueues – A desktop/app task organizer program that I literally couldn’t live without
- Project24 – The only blogging course I’ve ever purchased, and one I highly recommend in this article
- Acabado WordPress Theme – The WordPress theme you’re seeing now. I love it and use it on all my sites
- Name Cheap Domain registration & Hosting – Very inexpensive way to get started blogging!
Click on any of those affiliate links to check them out.
Of course, as with all affiliate links, the cost doesn’t increase to the purchaser. The product creator pays me a commission from their revenue when someone buys through my link.
So affiliate links are a great way to say thank you to whoever referred you.
Sponsored Posts – $12,101.16
This is almost the exact same dollar amount that I had in Q1. So the good news is that all the increase from Q2 over Q1 is coming from truly passive income; articles I have already written, edited and published (in most cases long prior to Q2).
I recapped sponsored posts in my last income report, but I’ll restate it again, more succinctly, here.
What is a sponsored post?
A sponsored post is basically a guest post that you get paid to publish.
In 99% of cases, the article isn’t optimized for SEO and will never generate traffic. They are short, sometimes poorly written, with bad grammar, and only designed to get the product or site owner a backlink.
They junk up your site, but for that reason, I backdate them a year so they don’t show up on my homepage. Basically, it was my sole method for generating revenue when I didn’t know any better.
It’s also not very passive since I have to physically paste their article in, do some minor editing & formating, add an image, publish it, and then send them payment info in Paypal.
I look forward to my overall income being high enough to where I can stop doing these. And I only do them on this site and not my other 3 sites.
Blogging Expenses by Category for Q1 2020 – $240.12
Tailwind for Pinterest scheduling – $104.88 (but paid annually at $419.52)
I only do Pinterest currently with this site and not my other 3. With a full-time job and a wife and 3 kids, I don’t have time for more Pinterest.
But Tailwind is essential if you want to be on Pinterest! It’s a little slow, and occasionally buggy. And like Pinterest itself, not 100% accurate on the analytics.
But you can’t really do a serious business with Pinterest without it.
CLICK HERE to check out Tailwind with my affiliate link
WPX Website Hosting – $24.99
I used Siteground for years on all my sites, and I still think they are decent, especially when you’re starting and don’t have much money to spend. You can get started with Siteground for under $5.00/month.
Want to get started with them? CLICK HERE to check out Siteground with my affiliate link
I moved to WPX as I wanted a faster host and one that I could grow with as my combined traffic was over 100,000 monthly page views. Siteground starts to get expensive after your initial policy renews, and I also felt their service had gone down, as had my site speed.
So after 2 months of investigation, I settled on WPX and overall have been very happy.
So if you have more than 1 site and decent traffic (over 50k monthly page views), I would highly recommend them.
CLICK HERE to check out WPX with my affiliate link
ConvertKit email service provider – $110.25 (billed annually at $441)
Honestly, email is pretty frustrating. It certainly doesn’t pay for itself. In a way, I wish I’d never started a list (one of a few things I did because Pat Flynn said to do it that hasn’t panned out for me).
ConvertKit is the best of the 4 companies I’ve used (MailChimp, Mailerlite, Constant Contact). But they are also the most expensive, by far.
If you want to build a personal brand or offer a membership site or a course, ConvertKit is a great way to build that list and create drip campaigns.
It can also work really well if you’re doing affiliate marketing and using Facebook ads to drive traffic to landing page opt-in pages (which you can create in ConvertKit) and then drip them emails once they opt-in pushing them to a product or service.
I do not do list building on my other 3 sites and am not sure I ever will due to the expense and time involved in setting everything up initially.
CLICK HERE to check out ConvertKit with my affiliate link
Hired Writers – $2,243.50
I forgot to include this in my Q1 report and my initial version of this post.
Hiring out writers is still somewhat new to me. I began experimenting with it in the fall of 2019 with mixed results. At this point, I’ve tried iWriter, We Write Blog Posts, Text Goods, and hiring on both the Upwork platform and ProBlogger job board.
In the end, I got very mixed results from iWriter at a great price. But ultimately I was spending almost as much time editing those posts as it would have taken me to write them from scratch.
TextGoods and We Write Blog Posts were both significantly better (but not without some issues), but also much higher priced. Great if you have good income and you just want to crank out content. But I’m still growing and their prices are twice as much as the other services I tried.
In the end, my current staff of writers is a mix of ones I found on ProBlogger and Upwork.
My best writer, by far, is on Upwork and cranks out awesome posts at 2 cents a word. I have had the occasional issue with plagiarism from some of the other writers, and these days run all posts through Copyscape to check.
After all, most writers you hire won’t be experts in your niche. So they’ll be Googling your topic and reading other blog posts. Then the less scrupulous ones might cut and paste small sections from other articles and not even take the time to re-write them.
I’ve also had bad or mediocre writers from both platforms too.
But right now, I have 6 writers I feel good about.
And that enables me to write and publish about 2-3 articles per week on my other 3 sites. I don’t add to this site often but may start to ramp it up again. But having writers has enabled me to grow my other 3 sites much faster than I would have been able to do myself.
In Q3, I also hired an editor to help speed up that process, so you’ll see that expense, and the tool I use to manage that, in my Q3 report.
Bottom Line Net Profit Before Taxes – $23,110.38
So, after the major expenses, that’s an annualized net profit, again, before taxes get taken out, of $101,415.22, or an increase over Q1’s net profit of 38%.
Q3 will see continued ads growth on the Hot Tub site especially and ads added to the hot tub YouTube site. I also need to think of ways to add monetization to the grocery site aside from ads.
But I’m very happy with the growth.
As you can see, it’s taken me almost 4 years to reach what could definitely be a full-time income.
My personal goal is to hit $10,000/month for at least 3 months in a row before I consider leaving the safety and security of my day job. June was my 1st month hitting that. But if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. And to be patient.
Now, I’m no genius. So if you want to do what I’m doing, there’s no reason you can’t!
And again with how 2020 has gone so far, there’s really no better time than now to take your future into your own hands and take control of your destiny.
What’s the #1 way to get started on a blog, YouTube channel, or other forms of internet marketing?
Project 24 (click to watch their video with all the details) is the only internet marketing course I’ve ever purchased, and it will be the only one I ever purchase.
It’s from the people over at Income School, and while they have a ton of great videos on YouTube, it was joining Project 24 that really started moving the needle forward.
I joined in April 2019, and that month, my income was $2,308.56
Compare that to June 2020 (last month at the time of this writing), and my income was $10,463.80. While I can’t say all of that 353% increase was due to what I learned in Project 24, a lot of it certainly was.
CLICK HERE to check out Project 24 with my affiliate link.
What do you get in Project 24?
A TON of different video module courses, the hub of which is their 60 steps to building a website. But then they also have courses (multiple videos in each one) on YouTube, search analysis/keyword research, monetization, and so much more.
And they add new courses a few times throughout the year.
Plus you get their WordPress theme, Acabado, totally free for as many sites as you want to use it on. And then there is their own internal forum where people like you and me constantly chime in to ask or answer questions (along with the whole Income School team).
Did I mention they have a weekly podcast for members only?
CLICK HERE to check out Project 24 with my affiliate link.