December 2016: Income & Progress Update

Take a peek at my 7th month of blogging. I made money without much work at all and I couldn't be happier!

I’m not going to lie to you. There are a lot of things about the month of December that I’m disappointed about. I didn’t do a good job of reaching my goals. Life was so busy, I just couldn’t find the time! Baking, gift wrapping, snow shoveling, a frozen water pipe (twice!), our pellet stove being out of commission for about a week, decorating, sledding, a trip to Oregon to visit family…

I’m just glad I made some money! It’s all I really found time to do!

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

My readership has been going down the last couple months. I’m sure the holidays have played a roll in this. It started in October when I didn’t write a single Halloween article. Then in November I cut back on how much I share my blog on social media.

December was a serious mess. I spent all my social media time on Pinterest. It worked to make money with my affiliate links, but it did a real number on my views:

The only things that changed much were my page views and visitors. The average session duration went up by one second, my bounce rate went up .02%.

I’m not beating myself up this time. I know it’s my fault, but I also know that I will have a lot more free time this month and that I’m going to turn this around.

It’s a new year and I’m optimistic! I’m excited to see where this journey takes me in 2017!

Our personal life was messy last year. Hubby went from an hourly employee to a salaried employee, a tree fell on our house, our utility pole fell, we racked up vet bills due to Goliath having back problems. Then there was the whole “totaling the Tahoe” thing. Heck, we didn’t even get a deer this year! First time we’ve come home empty handed from a deer hunting trip since we got married!

I can’t help but think that things can only start to get better this year. We can’t have two crappy years in a row… can we?

So, let’s talk about my goals. How many did I actually achieve?
  • Write 6 pages in my eBook – Nope. To be completely honest, creating and selling my own products isn’t the main direction I want my blog to go. That’s why I didn’t really even worry about this one. Sure, an eBook will be nice. An extra opportunity to help all of my readers and also make a buck, but I’m not in any huge hurry to get it done. The free material I offer my readers is more important to me.
  • Write 2 more Christmas posts – Yes! What’s funny (but also not funny…) is that those two Christmas posts were all I wrote. An all time low for me. I thought things were bad in November when I only posted 4 times!
  • Write a New Years Resolution post – No. I really couldn’t come up with a topic I liked.
  • Fix my old posts – Pfft. No. One more month where I failed to achieve this goal.
  • 75 email subscribers – Nope. I gained 3 subscribers, then lost one. I’m at 64 subscribers.
  • Organize! – No.
  • Get rid of the pop-up – I completely forgot about this one!!! I am not happy about it! It was so important to me! This is a top priority this month. Heck, screw getting it done this month… I’m doing it this week!
Income:
  • Google AdSense –  $13.68 – I’ve made $85.94 through Google AdSense now. Less than $15 to go before I can cash out!
  • Amazon $107.68 – This is where I want my income to come from. Not necessarily Amazon alone, but through affiliates. I really like the idea of recommending products that I love to people and making a little money when my readers purchase those products.
Total income last month: $121.36 – I’d have to go back through my reports, but December may have been my most profitable month. If not the most, then it’s definitely my second best month money wise.

Social media followers:

Facebook: 420 (+5)
Twitter: 1,328 (+79)
Instagram: 317 (+11)
Pinterest: 1,584 (+116)
StumbleUpon: 25 (+7)

Everything grew, which is always good, but it’s obvious I was slacking. My followers didn’t increase as much as they should have.

Goals for January 2017:
  • Get rid of the pop-up – NUMBER ONE PRIORITY. Google is punishing websites with pop ups now. Mine needs to go and I need to find a way to replace it. I’m hoping this will be simple and that it doesn’t mean I have to change my entire blog theme.
  • Write a Valentine’s Day post – I need to create some kind of Valentine’s Day gift guide if I want any chance of bringing money in from Amazon this month.
  • Fix 5 old posts – I keep failing here, but I’m confident I’ll get this done in January.
  • 75 email subscribers – That’s only 11 new subscribers. I just need to get back into the habit of peddling my freebie.
  • Organize! – This month I want to create a spreadsheet for all of my Facebook groups that tells me when all their promo & follow days are.
  • Write 6 posts – Or more… my goal is a minimum of 6, though, since I slacked off last month!
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 in 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, 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“. Ya gotta join group boards and pin your own pins to them as much as possible. Finding Your Tribe Online has multiple lists of Pinterest group boards organized by topic. It even tells you how to request to join each board! If you want to take your Pinterest game to the next level, it’s definitely worth the $27!!

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

Also, don’t beat yourself up. This report is proof that not every month is going to be a great month. Life happens. Just make sure that once things start returning to normal that you jump back into blogging!

 

My 1st month blogging.
My 2nd month blogging.
My 3rd month blogging.
My 4th month blogging.
My 5th month blogging.
My 6th month blogging.

Mama Monday's Pin Party

4 thoughts on “December 2016: Income & Progress Update

  • January 10, 2017 at 3:33 pm
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    Interesting and informative post to the new bloggers. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  • January 23, 2017 at 6:12 am
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    Good for you posting your goals here for accountability. Onward and upward! (Btw, you might enjoy a free report I’ve just put on my blog today. I’ve been blogging for 13 years and it’s a collection of tips I’ve learned from others through the years.)

    Reply
  • January 23, 2017 at 5:38 pm
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    Great job! Can’t wait to see your progress for next month! I just started this month. 🙂

    Reply

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