I said in last month’s post that June was fun, but it turns out that July was even more fun 🙂
As the title suggests, the site did just over $5,000 in revenue this month. It’s a pretty significant accomplishment, and one I’m especially proud to have reached in less than a year from starting the site from scratch.
Taking a Step Back
I’ve made my ambitions for this project pretty clear – I’m trying to build a website that can sell for over a million dollars. In order to do that, I’ve calculated that the site probably needs to get to a point where it’s making about $27,000 per month in profit.
So while I have a ways still to go with my goals, I do want to point a few things out for those of you following along who might have different goals.
The site earned $5,000 in revenue but I’ve chosen to spend $1,000 per month for link building campaigns. So call it $4,000 in “real” net income – that’s a lot of money relative to almost all of the worlds population – and I don’t take that for granted.
I have friends living the digital nomad lifestyle all over the world who live very well on way less money than that each month. I even live in a relatively expensive city of the USA (Houston) and have my family’s monthly expenses well below that number too.
I bring that up because I don’t want to gloss over what $4,000 per month can do – and I hope that this case study has illustrated that it’s possible to make some real money with online businesses and websites.
Through the end of July, I’ve put about 200 hours of work into the site TOTAL in 8 months. And at the sites absolute “worst” point in time, I was only about $3,200 out of pocket.
One way to look at that is that I traded 200 hours of my life and $3,200 for an asset that’s going to put $3,000 to $4,000 into my pocket every month – assuming no growth or decline. That’s a trade I make one billion percent of the time.
With this site in particular, I’m going to take the profits and reinvest in content and more back links, and some other new and fun things that I’ll get into below. The goal for me here is to try to grow the business even more instead of taking the cash flow and saving it or investing in something else – but I hope my point illustrates just what’s possible with a little bit of elbow grease and a WordPress site.
What Got Done This Month
- I wrote and posted 6 articles to the site, totaling 10,269 words
- 6 articles totaling 13,538 words written by writers I hired were posted to the site
- I spent $1,000 on my managed link building campaign with The Hoth to acquire backlinks to my site
- I hired a Pinterest manager to set up and grow a Pinterest account for my site
- I ordered 20,000 words worth of content with Content Pit
- At the end of the month, I was able to hire a talented writer who is going to write about 20,000 to 25,000 words per month for the site
- Ezoic invited my site to join their Ezoic Premium program
I mentioned at the end of the last update that I was hoping to phase myself out of writing for the site.
I see myself maybe doing 2 or 3 articles per month going forward because I’m actually interested in the niche and enjoy writing, but the bulk of the content is shifting to staff writers.
It took pretty much the whole month of July to find somebody who I felt like was a really good fit and writing style for my project. His contributions will start to ramp up in August.
In the meantime I did an order of 20,000 words from Content Pit. They’re an article writing service and their writers are very used to writing “best of” style review articles along with all of the other types of articles you’d find on most blogs.
The quality is good enough and their prices are pretty cheap, so they were a good fill in until I was able to find somebody more permanent.
I’ve always known that there are bloggers out there who have lots of success driving traffic to their sites via Pinterest.
My niche also seemed like it would do really well with a Pinterest strategy, which partially came to my attention because I noticed I was getting a decent amount of referral traffic from other people pinning my content to their Pinterest accounts.
The only problem is, I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing with Pinterest.
But now that the project has some extra cash flow to play with I have the luxury of being able to hire somebody to start and manage a Pinterest account. So that’s exactly what I did.
From what I understand, Pinterest operates like a search engine, not too dissimilar from Google, so the Pinterest play is a long term one. I’m going into this experiment expecting to breakeven anywhere from 3-6 months from now.
The other exciting development from July was my invitation to Ezoic premium.
Ezoic has established relationships with some of the largest brands in the world, and these brands pay big advertising money all across the internet.
Essentially, Ezoic has pre negotiated placement deals for these brands, who pay top dollar to show up on Ezoic’s network of sites with premium, verified traffic.
Participation in Ezoic premium comes with a monthly subscription fee, but the program is designed so that I’ll always make a positive return on my investment. In other words my Ezoic premium revenue will always be more than my subscription fee.
- Amazon US: $1,502.36
- Amazon UK: $5.75
- Amazon CA: $25.60
- Rakuten: $1,581.38
- Shareasale: $646.59
- Commission Junction: $138.88
- Ezoic: $1,090.83
- eBook: $63.64
Total Revenue: $5,055.04
July traffic was a pretty nice bump up compared to June, which is mostly due to my site’s pages continuing to climb the rankings in Google search results.
Profit and Loss
July was a big time month for this site – $5,000 in revenue is a huge milestone and one I’m definitely proud of. It’s great to see the diversity in revenue streams for this business too – it’s definitely not as reliant on Amazon as it was at the onset of the project.