I had a fun time writing up my first revenue or income report last month for July 2020.
It gave me a good, structured way to take a look at what's working and not in my content publishing slash blogging business.
Plus, July was my best month ever and first time crossing $10k in revenue, so I wanted to document it!
August was another banner month here at WBEP, with my 3 sites combined getting pretty close to $11k in revenue.
Most of the improvement came from some small traffic growth and better advertising RPMs than July, and hopefully I can continue the trend going forward into Q4.
Here's the breakdown of my portfolio in August 2020:
- Site 1 - $7136.43
- Site 2 - $3294.26
- Site 3 - $81.02
- Amazon Int'l - $471 (all sites combined)
- Total - $10,982.71
Last time around I forgot to include expenses, so here we go:
- Recurring expenses (tools, hosting, etc.): $500
- Content (articles & video): $1900
- Total: $2400
Again, I'm really not doing this to sell you on a course or any blogging tools or products. Just for myself and to generate some solid discussion, so definitely reach out in the comments or email me if you want to talk shop.
You can also find me on Twitter @esporter
Site 1 - Fitness & health
Live articles - 283 (+4)
Total pageviews - 161,141 (July: 157,958, +2%)
Total revenue - $7136.42 (July: $6632.35, +7%)
YouTube views - 499 (July: 319)
I am really ramping up content production on this site, and all my sites really, although it doesn't look like it here.
I added 4 articles in July and about 8 in August, but I don't like to count the articles added in August toward the August revenue. They're too new to really contribute to the bottom line, so I'll start factoring them in next month.
I also added 2 new videos on YouTube, which I'm looking to build as a secondary traffic channel that can hopefully pay for itself and add some diversification to the way the site earns.
What I'm working on:
Content production is the name of the game here.
I'm currently working with 2 writers and looking to add about 8 posts per month between them.
Since revenue has been going so well I will likely increase that to about 10-12 posts per month soon.
I've spent a lot of time working out my system for getting content assigned and published for this site.
I put a LOT of effort into my content briefs. My secret sauce is using lots of expert quotes in my content.
I usually use HARO to collect these, but it can be slow and you have to wade through a lot.
Right now I'm building something of a "Rolodex" of industry experts I can reach out to directly for quotes on a given topic (in exchange for publicity/a link) to speed things up and get good quality stuff.
I give all of this to my writers along with my own thoughts on each topic in the brief, and so far it's been working well. I'm proud of what I've been publishing lately!
YouTube continues to be a slow grind, but I don't really expect to know if that's working for 6 months or so.
I'm adding 2 videos per month and putting shortened, teaser versions of those videos into my MediaVine player to make some of that money back.
(Video player ads on this site earned close to $500 last month!)
Site 2 - Parenting & family
Live articles - 164 (+5)
Total pageviews - 133,962 (July: 126,982, +5%)
Total revenue - $3294.26 (July: $3143.32, +4%)
The story & what I'm working on:
This site is really straightforward.
I don't have a ton of plans for it right now except to continue adding content to the tune of about 8 posts per month.
I mentioned in the last report that I have had a lot of success doing HARO linkbuilding with this site, which can be a feast or famine sort of game.
August was slow but I did get mentioned with a link in a cool article on a DR 49 site.
I love getting these HARO media links, and it only takes me a few minutes per day to scan the query emails.
The key is authentic responses and real personal experience. If you're using a VA to do this for you, you'll have a hard time getting good media mentions.
Site 3 - Obscure hobby
Live articles - 23 (+2)
Total pageviews - 6,138 (July: 5,632, +9%)
Total revenue - $81.02 (July: 50.90, +59%)
The story & what I'm working on:
This site is really slow going.
I'm not able to give it a lot of attention right now, so there's not that much content on it yet. But I still think it's underperforming.
The big revenue boost comes from implementing Ezoic ads, which have been nice so far.
I want to get this site on YouTube ASAP. I'd like it to be earning about $300-500 per month to finance some video content, but I may go ahead and pull the trigger earlier if it continues to hover around this traffic level.
I have tons of great YouTube ideas here so chances are I'll get impatient soon and just go for it!
Expenses for August 2020
I never find the expenses section of income reports particularly interesting, but I do think it's helpful to give an overview.
I won't get too granular but:
Basic tools, website hosting & other recurring expenses: $500
Content investment (articles & YouTube videos): $1900
Including what I pay myself (a modest salary), there's room here to increase my content budget and/or bring in an editor to help publish content faster.
Another great month, so I'm really pleased with my progress this year.
I'm always sort of waiting for the other shoe to drop in the form of a huge Google update kicking my ass.
But so far, so good. And hopefully at this point I could survive a modest sized hit and keep chugging along.
Next steps for me are more content and finding an editorial assistant type of person to help me get this content up faster.