April 2017: Income & Progress Update

I've been blogging at A Frugal Desteny for nearly a year now. How am I doing? What do my stats look like? Am I bringing in any money?So, we’ve officially been living in this new house of ours for a month. I’ve spent the last month unpacking boxes and either throwing away, giving away, or selling everything we don’t absolutely need to keep. Downsizing our home has been really challenging. There’s not much storage space and very few places to put additional storage in our house.

Note: This post contains affiliate links. For more info, visit my disclaimer.

We did buy this pantry and it’s sitting in our utility room filled with food. My mother-in-law was kind enough to let us borrow a little dining table similar to this one so we have a place to eat at while we live here.

Purging ourselves of unnecessary items feels good, but I’ve spent so much time doing it that I haven’t spent as much time working on my blog as I’d hoped I would.

That’s okay, though, because I purchased Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing by Michelle Schroeder-Gardner a couple weeks ago at a discounted price. I’m about 65% done with the course and I absolutely love it. HIGHLY recommend it.

The first half really wasn’t that exciting for me, honestly. I’ve been blogging for nearly a year now, so I already knew a lot of the stuff she covered in the beginning. This last 15% has been amazing, though. I’ve already learned so much and am excited to implement all of this new information! I’m taking a bit of a break from the course right now to focus on making changes to my blog based on what I’m learning. I can’t wait to jump back in!

I was actually really shocked when I checked out last months numbers. It was a pleasant surprise! See for yourself:

Everything is up. My page views are up 39% and my unique visitors went up 33% compared to last month. Definitely not where I want these numbers to be, but they are getting better. The only trick now is to continue to improve them!

Here are the 5 posts that saw the most traffic:

Stop Turning Your Little Boy into a Little Girl” made a small comeback towards the end of the month. I created a new pinnable image for it that caught the attention of a few people. Those awesome people decided to angrily share it on Facebook. That’s where the jump in page views at the end came from.

So, let’s talk about my goals. How many did I actually achieve?
  • Write 5 posts – Ha, no. I only got 3 done.
  • Fix 5 old posts – Yes. I actually changed this goal a bit. Although I still fixed my posts, I didn’t fix them the way I had been planning to. I was tired of having giant images in my posts, so I started resizing them and adding/removing/changing links in my posts.
  • 75 email subscribers – Of course not.
  • Create 2 new Pinterest images on 5 posts – No. I kept reminding myself to work on doing it, but only created 1 new image for 2 posts.
  • Organize! – Nope.
  • Find and apply for 3 campaigns – I applied for one and then I was contacted by multiple companies to test their product and write a review about it. I accepted 2 of the offers I received because even though I am not being reimbursed financially for my posts, I am genuinely interested in the products.
  • Post on Instagram 5+ times a week – Yep. I had a hard time keeping up with this towards the end, though!
Income:
  • Google AdSense –  $9.52 – Not too shabby for basically doing nothing on here last month.
  • Swagbucks – $3.00 – 3 people signed up for Swagbucks through my affiliate link.
  • Amazon – $0.32 – My Easter basket post managed to sell one item last month.
Total income last month: $12.84 – I also received this veggie grill basket, worth $20, in exchange for a review.

Social media followers:

Facebook: 611 (+48)
Twitter: 1,874 (+198)
Instagram: 457 (+38)
Pinterest: 2,232 (+151)
StumbleUpon: 38 (+2)

The last week of the month I made a little push to get at least 600 Facebook likes on my page. I was pleasantly surprised that it worked! A little disappointed with Pinterest, though. I thought I had done better.

Goals for May 2017:
  • Finish fixing my old posts – I should be able to fix every one of them. I made a lot of progress last month.
  • Review my opt-ins – Even though I’ve been sharing them, my freebies just aren’t bringing in subscribers anymore. I want to review them, maybe update the landing pages or write another post about them.
  • Create 2 new Pinterest images on 5 posts – A goal again this month.
  • Find and apply for 3 campaigns – I’d be happy if I can make this happen.
  • Create a recipe and write the review – I mentioned I received a veggie grill basket. Well, I have to write a review and I really want to include a great recipe in it!

What are my recommendations for other bloggers?

Well, if you haven’t started blogging yet, I recommend getting a self hosted plan through Bluehost. Since I started blogging last May, I’ve had no issues with them. They have been great to work with and plans start as low as $3.45 a month!

If you already have a blog, PINTEREST IS KEY.

I can’t stress enough how important it is to be on Pinterest! And not just “I have an account and I pin all my posts to one of my boards“. You have to join group boards and pin your own pins to them as much as possible. I belong to tons of them, so feel free to head over to my Pinterest page and browse through my boards.

| Here’s a list of my favorite Pinterest group boards! |

Another great idea is buying Finding Your Tribe Online. I couldn’t have gotten to where I am now without all the help I’ve gotten from Jen Snyder over at Women Winning Online. She has been so helpful that I purchased Finding Your Tribe Online from her a few months ago and it has been one of the best blogging purchases I’ve made! FYTO has multiple lists of Pinterest group boards organized by topic. It even tells you how to request to join each board! Not to mention that, FYTO includes a full blown marketing plan! If you want to take your Pinterest game to the next level, it’s definitely worth the $67!!

If Facebook groups are more your style, she’s included a ton of those is FYTO, too. Seriously, this is the best blogging resource I’ve found so far!

I’ve been promoting Finding Your Tribe Online for a few months now. I totally stand behind this product and attribute a lot of my success to it!

| Learn more about FYTO |

I’m also really impressed with what I’ve experienced up to this point in Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I’m not completely finished with it and I haven’t implemented all of her advice yet, but I think it’s definitely something every blogger should look into and consider taking! I really wish I would have coughed up the money and signed up for it sooner. It would have made my first year of blogging so much easier!

Are you a blogger? How long have you been blogging for? Are you doing better than me or are you struggling, too?

8 thoughts on “April 2017: Income & Progress Update

  • May 1, 2017 at 8:20 pm
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    Just found you through the fb group Bloggers Supporting Bloggers. Loved reading your update! I’ve not made any money through blogging yet (well, like 10 bucks) but I’m loving the journey and I enjoy learning from other bloggers. Thanks for all the tips. I may have to look into FYTO.

    Reply
  • May 1, 2017 at 9:52 pm
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    Thank you for sharing your goals vs. what you actually accomplished! I love seeing realistic posts like this 🙂 !

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  • May 2, 2017 at 2:59 am
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    Thank you so much for sharing this 🙂 really interesting!

    Reply
  • May 4, 2017 at 11:05 am
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    Hi. I enjoyed reading your blog post. I am a full time teacher and want to eventually make my blog into a full time business. I have a long way to go!! I just started at the end of February and haven’t made a dime as of yet but I hope to once I have been working at it for a few more months. Thank you for the link to your Pinterest boards!

    Reply
    • May 5, 2017 at 9:19 am
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      No, I’m using Flex Offers. I guess that’s going to change, though! I just went over to Impact Radius and signed up with them. Thanks for the heads up!!

      Reply
  • May 17, 2017 at 6:27 pm
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    Desteny,

    I found you on Pinterest! I’m a new blogger (3 months in) and I LOVE your blog! Congrats on your income. I have a question, what do you mean by fixing old posts? Do you mean updating them? Have you been blogging for a while now?

    I’m interested in affiliate marketing and heard great things about Michelle’s course, but I’m on a tight budget for now. It’s on my wish list though 🙂

    I totally agree with you on Pinterest! I’m ONLY on Pinterest too. I’m trying to grow my followers but it’s super hard with a brand new account. I’m on some group boards and that’s totally helping me reach more people and getting more followers!

    Reply
    • May 17, 2017 at 10:49 pm
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      Yeah, I’ve been blogging for about a year now and I honestly had NO clue what I was doing those first couple months. Just going through, editing and updating the old posts. Deleting some that I know really won’t bring in readers.

      I’m excited to connect with you! Congrats on your new blog! I’ve taken every free course/webinar/what-have-you that I could get my hands on. I was super interested in Elite Blog Academy, but that price… I just couldn’t justify spending nearly $800 when my blog is lucky to bring in $100 a month right now!! I got Michelle’s course at a discount (lemme know if you do want to take it later, I always have discount codes!) and it was definitely a great investment.

      Pinterest is an amazing tool. I was going to ask if you want to join some of my boards, but I just checked my email and saw you asked to join already. I’m gonna add you ASAP 🙂

      Thanks and happy blogging!!

      Reply

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