It’s the end of the month!
That means that I should have an income report ready for all my fellow side-hustlers. I’m on this journey with you, so I have something to prove. I’d like to prove that it’s possible to systematically increase your income with some intention and action.
I publish these reports to stay accountable for my goal of reaching $25k-$30k in monthly income so that I can retire the hubbs (and myself) by the time we are 40 years old. It’s still a longshot, but so was getting out of over $120,000 in debt, but we did it!
Before I get into the numbers, I just wanted to add that even though December was especially hectic for me and our family as a whole, I am pleased with the income growth results (due in January.)
If you haven’t heard from me a million times already, my oldest daughter finally booked her first TV performance (that’s not a commercial) ever earlier this month! The catch was that the LA studio hired her as a local so we had to cover travel and lodging. In essence, we had to cover two trips to LA in one month! It worked out well because we had airline points with Southwest and an Airbnb credit (click here to get your $35 Airbnb credit.) Plus, I had a few hundred dollars in my Digit account to cover meals and incidentals.
I’m also glad to have a flexible line of work like blogging and freelance writing so I can travel and help my kids get a headstart in life. If you think this life of flexible work is for you, two things:
- Start a blog by going to BlueHost.com. If you forward your purchase receipt to me at email@example.com, I’ll send a free 10 video blog tutorial on how to get everything set-up (even your email list and ad networks so you can make money ASAP.)
- Take Holly Johnson’s eCourse on breaking into freelance writing, Earn More Writing.
Blogging and freelance writing make a good combination because you can use your blog to create a portfolio in case you don’t yet have experience. Also, editors like to know that you have a following (with a blog) and will share your work with your audience. It’s a win-win situation.
So without further ado….
I made a total of $2,841.82 for the month of December.
Monthly Unique Pageviews: 25,000
Email List (with ConvertKit) Size: 2,770
|Udemy.com Course Sales||$72.78|
|Ad Network Income||$223.80|
|Affiliate Income Sales from:||$307.90|
|Virtual Assistant Services||$700.00|
|Computer – Internet||$116.24|
|Postage & Delivery||$20.95|
|Meals and Entertainment||$29.76|
|Advertising & Promotion||$202.85|
|Vehicle – Fuel||$62.77|
|Total Operating Expenses||$306.40|
My goal is to be at $30k per month with at least 80% of it being passive. This month, I was heavy on writing and virtual assistant income, but next month I should she much higher in affiliate income. Passive income is like farming. It just takes time to plant those seeds. I am confident this process works and am seeing a harvest. I just need to take time and plant more seeds 🙂
Elite Blog Academy
After taking Elite Blog Academy, I notice my income has increased greatly. There are so many good tips on how to grow your blog and your income that I recommend it for anyone who wants to have a profitable blog. I’m glad I invested in the course and highly recommend it!
If you want to learn more about EBA, check out my review of Elite Blog Academy here.
The only bummer is that it opens once a year. Click below to get your free eBook on boosting your blog traffic and get added to the EBA wait list.
Even though my traffic took a dip the last couple of months, my income is growing due to my focus on affiliate income strategies. I just finished taking a course from super blogger, Michelle of Making Sense of Cents. Michelle’s blog earns over $100K per month in affiliate marketing revenue!
Her eCourse, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, is a great way to learn about her affiliate selling strategy. I’m about 96% done and am seeing some of the recommendations as helpful. This course is pricey but worth it.
If you can’t drop the dough on that one (it’s $199), consider the Core Affiliate Strategy guide for $46. The Core Affiliate Strategy helped me make over $2,500 in my first affiliate launch this past August.)
If you are interested in the tactics I used to increase my affiliate income here is a link to Rosemarie Groner’s Core Affiliate Strategy guide.
NOTE: This guide recommends you have an email list of at 1,000 people to do an effective launch. If your list is not that big, no worries, I actually wrote a quick eBook called Grow Your Email List, Grow Your Income on the subject of how to grow an email list. If you buy the Core Affiliate Strategy guide, I’ll give you Grow Your Email List, Grow Your Income for free. Just forward your purchase receipt to firstname.lastname@example.org to get it.
All in all, I am happy with my affiliate sales growth and look forward to seeing my numbers get higher in this area.
Though I’m not looking to trade dollars for hours anymore, I do realize that adding some freelance writing to supplement my blog income has been helpful. When I am between big affiliate launches, freelance writing has been a life-saver!
I’ve probably got capacity for just a few more clients. Not reflected int his income report, I’ll bill $1,600 for freelance writing work this month! This will be reflected in January when I get that money in.
If you are interested in learning about how to start your freelance writing career, check out this eCourse on freelance writing by my friend, Holly Johnson who makes over $220,000 per year writing! It’s called Earn More Writing. If you think Holly is unique, check out my post about other six-figure freelance writers and it might inspire you to explore the possibilities with this stream of income.
Virtual Assistant Work
I recently picked up a client who needed some help with lead generation for his business. I’ve done VA work in the past for everything from writing sales copy to database administration. Again, I’d like my income to be more passive, but this gives me income and more money to invest in my business until that kicks in. We’ll see how it works and if I keep it going.
If you’d like to break into VA work, check out Gina Horkey’s free course, Jumpstart Your Virtual Assistant Career.
My email list continues to be my best marketing channel. It’s how I am surviving even with such low traffic. Also, ConvertKit has been great in growing my email list and my income. I have been using that along with the SumoMe Welcome Mat and I’ve nearly tripled my email list in a little over 2 months.
If you want more tips on how to grow your email list, check out this eBook I created on strategies and tactics that will help your email list grow: Grow Your Email List, Grow Your Income. You can get it free if your purchase the Core Affiliate Strategy or the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing eCourse.
What’s Not Working
I’ll still promote some Udemy courses I think are useful, but I’m pulling all but two courses that I teach off Udemy. The prices are just insanely low! I’m transitioning to my own school, Increase Institute, on the Teachable platform. In fact, I’ve moved everything over already, I’m just sprucing things up a bit. Check out my courses here before my official January launch: Increase Institute.
I’m now using Wave and
FreshBooks for my accounting needs. In my September income report, I said I was moving from cash-based accounting (recognizing money only as it comes in) to accrual (including work I have billed for but not yet been paid on.) Then in October, told you I was back to cash-based. I still am, but I am taking FreshBooks out of the equation for now. I found a hack that will make my Wave books cash-based. Plus, I am at the point where I’ll need to start payroll on myself again, and Wave has what I need at a price that’s right. There are integrations to make FreshBooks work with a payroll service, but I’d have to pay for both services.
I still vouch for FreshBooks all the way. I used it more when I had a lot of contractors to bill work for certain clients and projects in my database business. Now, that doesn’t happen as much. So, I’m back to Wave.
My traffic had dropped considerably and I think I know why: I haven’t spent much time in increasing it. Initially, I was faithful in following the steps in this Pinterest Strategy Guide and my traffic was growing like crazy. Then it kinda petered out as I didn’t do the required maintenance the strategy suggests. It’s climbing back up, but there’s still work to do. At this point, my goal is to perform maintenance on my Pinterest strategy best I can, then spend 2017 promoting all the content I have. Since my income is at a tolerable level right now.
I’ve still got a ways to go when it comes to growing my income. As a home schooling mom of two little ones, it can be quite hard to fit in blogging and freelance writing, but I am doing what I can to make it work.
As I’ve said many times before, my ultimate goal is to consistently make $25,000-$30,000 in income per month and invest about $15,000 per month so we can retire early by 40. In addition to that, I am hoping that by early 2017, my income can carry the household expenses while my husband just banks his check going forward. It’s a BIG goal, but I believe we can do it!
How about you? What are your money goals? Is making additional income in there as well?
If you think that you’d like to give online business a go, consider starting a blog for as little at $3.95 per month with BlueHost.com. Need help? No problem, sign up below to get the tools I used to start and grow my blog including a PDF resource guide and 5 video tutorial on setting up your blog: