Welcome once again to our monthly income and traffic report!
We decided to do this to give you a glimpse into what is going on ‘behind the posts’ at Foxy Folksy and for us to keep track of the developments on our attempt in making Foxy Folksy an income-generating blog. Hopefully, sharing this will also help others who are interested in creating their own blog or those who are also trying to find their way in making money from their existing blog by learning from our mistakes and successes.
Foxy Folksy has been up and running since January 2014 but only as a hobby blog. This means I was just posting articles whenever I was in the mood, like twice in a month or so. We only really started thinking that maybe we could make some earnings from it in early months of 2016. You can see how Foxy Folksy was doing in the months from my first income report.
Another thing worth mentioning, I guess, is that we are not in the United States. We are currently based in Germany but most of our traffic are coming from the US and then second from the Philippines. Why do I have to mention this? Simply because I am starting to learn that the opportunities for US-based bloggers are different for bloggers in my situation. I am also following some food bloggers who publish their monthly income reports but all I was able to find so far are US-based bloggers. It is a good way to get ideas where they get their income, sure, but some of their sources or advice are not applicable to me, a Non-US-based blogger. So I am trying to share the things that are working for me and those that did not.
Below are the numbers for the month of April:
Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and all of the products listed below are products and services I have personally used or still using.
- Adsense - $110.56
- Youtube - $25.77
- Gourmet Ads - $10.03
- Monumetric - $367.99
- Sovrn - $43.18
- Swoop - $4.51
- Amazon Associates- $17.50
- Hostgator - $0 --> this is from affiliate links on the page: How to create a blog
Total Income: $579.54
- Hostgator - $11.84
- Boardbooster - $10.00
- Monthly Giveaway - $34.95
- Food Blogger Pro - $23.25
- Facebook Ads - $12.00
- Youtube Ads - $3.00
Total Expenses: $95.04
NET INCOME: $484.50
These are actual screenshots from Google Analytics:
RPM FOR THE MONTH:
What is RPM you say? Well simply put, it is how much you earn per 1000 Pageviews and you calculate with this formula:
(revenue / pageviews) x 1000
Why is it important? Well, it is a simple way of tracking how the blog is performing from month to month when it comes to generating income. With this, you are also able to compare your own performance to other bloggers who are also publishing their income reports. The goal is, of course, to get this number to increase or in the least stable. A decrease in RPM means some improvement in your income strategy is needed.
RPM FOR THE PAST 12 MONTHS:
FACEBOOK : 1,625(up by 214)
INSTAGRAM : 3,168 (up by 1,962)
PINTEREST : 4,426 (up by 474)
TWITTER : 1,769 (up by 264)
YOUTUBE : 769 (up by 180)
EMAIL : 1,105 (up by 111)
- This month's page views are down by 0.44% from 152,593 last March to 151,922 this month. Although April is 1 day less than March, it was just a bit disappointing that we didn't get an increase in the average daily views this month. I guess we got spoiled from last month's big jump. But still thankful that it, at least, remained the same instead of plunging down.
- We had a total of 10 posts for April! Not as much as last month but still within the target (min. 10)!
- Income for the month has, sadly, decreased by 20% with an RPM of $3.81, the lowest since November after I joined Monumetric. I would like to note that we had some problems that affected the earnings for at least three days. More about that below. But even with the issue we had, the RPM for this month from Monumetric was not so good. Our account manager explained that it is due to the fact that it is the first month of the new quarter (Q2), where advertisers are again in the process of planning their ad spending.
- Again, we would also like to note that at the moment Ads are mainly our source of income. Sponsorship is hard to get by, in our case at least, because we are not in the US but most of our audience are.
- About affiliate links. We are still focusing more on Amazon. We do it by adding links in our recipe boxes and the native ads that you might notice at the bottom of some posts. We haven't done it on all the posts yet but are planning to. If you are interested to know what Affiliate Networks we've joined so far, you can read more from a previous report.
- Youtube Earnings continues to grow as we try to add more video on our Youtube channel. Youtube videos can also be a source of income thru Ads from Adsense. Here are our latest videos:
- For those who missed my previous report (and because I love it so much I want to plug it again)....we joined FOOD BLOGGER PRO!!! This is a membership site for food bloggers (and others) created by Bjork and Lindsay from Pinch of Yum. This is where they share their secret to their successful website. It is great for those who are just starting to blog or thinking of having one. They have video tutorials on how to create your own blog/website, driving traffic to it, SEO, food photography and everything in between! They also have a great team who are very friendly and helpful and the community is just great! So even for those who have been already blogging for awhile, you can still learn a lot and be up-to-date with what's new in the world of blogging and get answers to your questions from the tips and advice of the experts in the community forum. They also have this monthly live Q& A where you can ask Bjork and Lindsay questions and get your answers live. Read here to know more about Food Blogger Pro!
- An update on our Mediavine application! We mentioned from our last income report that we got rejected by Adthrive, it was more like a conditional rejection, meaning if we meet a certain requirement we may try applying again in the future. Now we also got an answer from Mediavine regarding our application. Sad to say that it is again another rejection. Here is the reason they provided: "Unfortunately because demand to the Philippines within our network is very light, our experience is that this would lead to incredibly low CPMs and fill rates." I am a bit confused though because most of our traffic is from US (41%), the Philippines is only second (19%) and Canada comes third (10%). They only accept publishers with 25,000 sessions or more if you are in good standing with Google. If you have a previous ban with Google AdSense then that threshold moves to 100,000 sessions a month. We've got 44,000+ sessions from US alone and never got banned from Adsense. But I guess it was not enough.
- The issue. As I mentioned above, we encountered an issue towards the end of April. It was a site speed issue. Our plan (baby) from Hostgator can no longer handle our traffic it seems, so we decided to move it to their cloud plan. It is proving to be a good decision so far. It is also not as expensive as other cloud hosts, we are actually paying the same amount we did before because we availed of their discount for a 1-year plan. Below is a graph to compare the server response time before and after the upgrade. The migration was finished on the 27th of April. Prior to that, the average server response time was around 2.01 seconds now it is only 0.55.
- What is next! The next on our agenda is to change our theme. The theme we are now using is a free one from WPExplorer called Elegant. I made so many changes in the design so you will probably not recognize it from the original anymore. No, I am not a web designer and my knowledge of CSS and HTML is very limited. I was just persistent (and stubborn) and read a lot of articles online that enabled me to do the changes that I wanted. It was often like trial and error until I get it to look as it does now. This theme is great but since it is a free one, it was not updated since I installed it two years ago, so I guess it is time. Still looking for a nice theme that is also SEO friendly. I am thinking to jump on the bandwagon and get me Genesis Framework but I read from the Food Blogger Pro forum that it might not be the best choice SEO-wise. What do you think? If you can suggest a good theme, please do as I am searching already for weeks and still undecided.
That's it for now! Until the next reporting!
Thinking of starting your own blog, you may want to visit my blog post on How To Start A Blog with a checklist of the things you should know before actually creating one and How to create a Blog for the step-by-step procedures on building your blog. You may also want to check out my Resource Page for the tools you need for your blog.