In my monthly income reports, I will take you behind the scenes of my online businesses and show you how much I made last month, as well as how I focused my time and what I worked on in growing my blogs.
August was a big month for me in a lot of ways. Perhaps the biggest news is that August was a record-breaking month. And, it was also a continuation of my upward trending monthly income. Of course, a lot of the groundwork that was put in place in order to achieve the results I had this past month was put forth over the past six months.
And, really, that’s how my online business has always tended to go… the more work I put in now, the better results I will have 5-6 months down the road. I’m assuming most other online entrepreneurs have similar experience.
I really want to emphasize this point, too, because if you’re just starting out it is so easy to get discouraged if you don’t see any results right away.
The truth is that all of the hard work you’re putting in now likely won’t become profitable for at least a few months. And, so you have to be patient!
In fact, for beginners, it would be fair to say that results within 5-6 months aren’t very typical, simply because most beginners have to make a bunch of mistakes first in order to figure out what does—and doesn’t—work.
So, if you’re out there grinding away and you haven’t had any results yet, don’t get discouraged… instead, put in an even bigger effort! Only good things can happen.
In any case, that is my motivational speech for the month…
Here’s what I worked on in August:
An Overview of August
In my last income report I talked about a handful of things I was focusing on for August. They were:
- Studying my competition and finding new potential keywords to target.
- Creating a course for Income Addon readers that takes you through my step-by-step process.
- Working on my 3rd niche site.
- Creating a web app for one of my niche sites.
- Committing more to social media.
I am usually overly optimistic. So, it’s not unusual for me to come up with more goals than I can handle in a given month. And, often times, when I come up with a set of goals going into a month, I find that I only usually make significant progress on a few of them.
This month was the same…
1. Studying the Competition and Finding New Keywords to Target
Of my five plans of action for August, I spent most of my time working on targeting potential keywords and on working on my 3rd niche site. If you remember from last month I said that, through using SEMRush, I found 44 new keywords that I could target with large buyer’s guides on just one of my sites.
And, because I’m starting to outsource some content on my sites, I have been able to knock out quite a few guides already.
In August, I knocked off three of the 44 new guides and I have another two that are written, but that just need to be edited and organized.
Through doing some research into these keywords, I’m pretty sure that if I can get them all posted within the next year, I can double the traffic to my highest-earning site within that time frame. And, so, that is a big reason why I have been focusing so much on getting these guides created.
2. Creating Income Addon’s Free Course
I did make some progress on my course and I do believe I will still have it ready by the end of this month. In fact, I will be buckling down on it over the next few weeks and dedicating most of my attention to it in order to get it finished on time.
(If you’re interested in the course, you can signup here to get notified when it goes live.)
Also, I revamped my “How to Start A Blog” guide and switched it from just a quick tutorial on how to setup your blog, to a more in-depth look at the step-by-step process involved in starting, building, and growing a profitable blog. It’s a little structured like the course I’m working on will be, but it doesn’t go into quite as much detail.
Although, if you don’t want to wait for my course and you want to get a general idea of my step-by-step process, that would be a good place to start.
3. Working on My 3rd Niche Site
Again, utilizing SEMRush, I was able to come up with a bunch of keywords to target with big buyer’s guides on my newest niche site. And, I was able to put up two brand new guides for that site this past month.
I also updated an old guide that needed to be reworked and I have a couple of more that also need to be refreshed as well. So, I will likely try to get those done in September.
Additionally, I have two brand new guides for my new site that are all written and ready to be posted. So, I’m definitely making progress with this site in terms of content creation. I’ve also started to promote it a bit as well, and will continue to do so this month.
4. My Web App and My Social Media Strategy
For the web app I’m having developed, there’s not really much I can do at the moment, as the developer is still working on it. But hopefully it will be ready to be launched before the holiday season because I think it will be a valuable tool to bring in more traffic and more prospective buyer for my main site.
The one area where I didn’t spend as much time as I would have liked to was on social media. I did start off the month pretty well and I was posting regularly to my social media profiles, but I tailed off at the end of the month to focus on getting more guides up on my sites.
One thing I have done, though, is to create some kind of graphic for each of my new posts and guides. And, I’ve found that posting some really well-made graphics on Pinterest can be a really powerful source of driving traffic.
I haven’t perfected Pinterest by any means, but I have noticed that some online entrepreneurs have been really kicking butt using it. So, I did put more effort into Pinterest this past month and I am happy enough with the results to where I will continue focusing on it.
All-in-all, I was pretty busy this month and I was able to make good progress on three of my five goals. So, I am definitely happy with that and I will try to carry this momentum into September.
But, before I talk about what I have planned for September, let me give you a look at how much I made in August and how I accomplished it.
My August 2016 Income Report
As I said at the beginning of this post, August ended up being my most successful month ever. I am truly grateful for the success I have had, not only this month, but in all of the months prior.
And, it feels really good to come back from the drop in income I ran into last September.
Now I feel like I have a ton of momentum to back up a really solid plan. And, so I believe there is even more potential going forward with my system.
Obviously, anytime you exceed your previous record month it’s a good time. So, while I am motivated to push the bar forward—because I see even more potential for success—I definitely need to take a step back and be thankful for what I’ve been able to accomplish.
- Amazon.uk: £1,018.01
- Amazon.de: €286.10
- Amazon.fr: €108.33
- Amazon.it: €184.42
- Amazon.es: €61.67
- Total foreign: ~$2,068.14 (really depends on current exchange rates)
*NOTE: It wouldn’t be possible for me to make commission from foreign Amazon sites without a plugin like EasyAzon. I paid ~$49 for the plugin, and, as you can see, I have easily made the back and a lot more. I definitely recommend EasyAzon if you are running an Amazon-affiliate-based site.
- Amazon Private Label Products: $1,363.44
- Amazon Associates: $24,724.94
Total Net Profit: $28,156.52 (+$3,226.62)
A Look at September
I’m not sure how much I’m going to be able to get done in September as I have a week-long trip planned with the family, as well as another short trip planned with some friends.
However, my main goal going into this month will be to buckle down on the course I am creating and try and get it released for you by the end of the month.
Aside from the course, I’m going to work on putting up more buyer’s guides on my main site as well as on my newest niche site. And, I’ll also focus on promoting those guides and some of my existing guide to try and generate higher rankings and more traffic.
1. Doubling-Down on Buyer’s Guides!
Buyer’s guides are my bread and butter. I probably make over 95% of my monthly income directly from the buyer’s guides I have on my sites.
As I’ve mentioned before, from using SEMRush to help me find some obscure keywords that haven’t really been tapped into yet, I’ve come up with a list of 44 different keywords that I want to target with new buyer’s guides.
By outsourcing the content I’ve been able to post three of those 44 new guides so far and I have two that should be up on my site within the next week or so.
So, with five created thus far and 39 more to go, I will definitely be looking to chip away at that number some more this month. Not to mention, with the 3rd niche site I’m working on, I have about 6-7 more big guides that I want to create as well.
But the bottom line is that creating more buyer’s guides for my sites is going to be something I’m focusing on each and every month for the foreseeable future.
2. Promoting My Buyer’s Guides
Content creation is only the beginning of building a profitable blog. None of my guides would get any serious amount of traffic if I didn’t work to promote them.
So, along with creating more buyer’s guides this month, I will also look to promote them.
Some of my promotion strategies are:
- Creating infographics for each buyer’s guide and submitting them to infographic directories.
- Posting infographics and other specially-designed graphics for my posts on social media (and focusing a lot on Pinterest.)
- Conducting email outreach to try and get links from resource pages and authority sites.
- Responding to queries on HARO to try and land some editorial links on big sites.
My promotion strategy isn’t super advanced, but it has worked. In truth, I could turn it up a bit more by adding in some guest posting. And, I may start looking more into how I can systematize guest posting so that I can utilize it without it taking up too much of my time.
3. Finishing Up & Launching the Course
While I will be working on putting up more buyer’s guides this month, my main focus will be on finishing my free course. I have about half of the course created already and I should be able to finish the rest over the course of the next two weeks.
Then, I’ll just need to polish it and it should be ready to go by the end of the month.
One of the things I really want to make sure that the course does is to provide actionable steps. I can tend to ramble on about random things and get away from the point, so I’m going to make it a priority to go back to each Unit in the course and make sure there’s some kind of action steps involved with it.
That way you’ll have a true step-by-step process to go through.
All-in-all, September will be another busy month. And, with a couple of trips planned I probably won’t be able to get as much done as I’d like to.
However, if I can get the course launched (or at least very close to being ready to be launched) then it will be a good month.
I’m really excited to get it live and I am definitely looking forward to seeing if anyone else can take my system and create their own profitable blog(s).
In any case, though, here’s to all of us having a very productive month!