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 just moved to the Philippines from Germany but most of our traffic is 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 November:
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 - $217.77
- BlogHer (SheKnows) - $1,397.44
- Youtube - $91.47
- Amazon Associates- $36.17
- ShareASale - $0
Income from Ads: $1,706.68
Income from Affiliates: $36.17
Total Income: $1,742.85
- Hostgator - $11.84
- Boardbooster - $20.00
- Monthly Giveaway - $50
- Food Blogger Pro - $23.25
- Mailchimp - $50.00
- Easy Recipe Plus Plugin- renewal $12.47
Total Expenses: $167.56
NET INCOME: $1,575.29
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 it 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.
From this month forward, our RPM computation will only include revenue from Ads as these are the income that is directly associated with the number of page views. Commissions from affiliates are excluded as these are earnings from a sale which has nothing to do with the increase or decrease in page views.
RPM FOR THE PAST 12 MONTHS:
FACEBOOK : 3,949(up by 254)
INSTAGRAM : 6,326 (down by 478)
PINTEREST : 5,336 (up by 97)
TWITTER : 3,316 (up by 139)
YOUTUBE : 3,681 (up by 507)
EMAIL : 3,704 (up by 359)
- November's page views decreased by 4.50% from 231,302 to 220,885. This is a little puzzling for us. We are actually expecting a jump in Pageviews in November as this is usually the case in the previous years, November being our best performing month in terms of traffic. The influx of traffic usually comes days before the Thanksgiving. This is also the case this month but still, it really is too less than what we were expecting. It is either the last two months (September and October) did too good that it overshadowed the supposed traffic surge for November or it has something to do with us not being that active this year working on the blog (because of the adjustments still ongoing after we migrated from Germany to the Philippines)...Sorry...
- We had a total of 5 posts for November! I know, disappointing! Especially if you compare this to the 12 posts we had for the same month on the previous year.
- The good news is our income increased by 31%! And our RPM soared from $5.67 to $7.73! Yippeee! I love Q4! This is the time when advertisers are spending the biggest portion of their annual budgets.
- What's new: We decided not to be an affiliate of Hostgator anymore. This decision was made when we learned that a commission of $50 for a sale in May 2017 will never be paid to us. Aside from the fact that it takes 6 months after the sale before you get paid you have to meet below terms from Hostgator to be paid at all. So, since we didn't have a succeeding sale until December 2017 (which I also doubt I can collect) this commission was reversed by them, simply put, NO PAYMENT.
"Therefore there will be the requirement that 2 sales, or $100 in minimum earnings be valid according to our sale requirements listed in our TOS in order for payment to be sent.There is a $100 minimum threshold for Commission Fees. If You do not meet the minimum threshold of $100 within 180 days after the end of the month in which a Qualified Purchase was properly completed, commission payments will be forfeited and Your commission balance will revert to $0."
Maybe other websites and bloggers are able to make money from being an affiliate of Hostgator, I am only saying that it is not for us. So to prevent us from future disappointments, we decided to stop our affiliation with them and remove all endorsement and links from our site and move on...
- We tried our luck again with Adthrive and....STRIKE TWO!, unfortunately. We thought that maybe we could get lucky since our December Pageviews reached to 262K. We applied as soon as early January and got a really quick response that their decision remains the same. This means we need to have that 50% US traffic even though we reached the 100K PV requirement (262,000 x 38.64%=101,236). So, for now, we decided to stay with BlogHer.
- Apropos, we noticed the declining RPM from BlogHer these past months, from November to December, despite that this quarter should have been the best performing quarter (ads-wise) thus we are expecting a rise in RPM and not the opposite. What we did was, we initiated an inquiry about it by emailing BlogHer/SheKnows ...will tell you more in the next reporting...
- What's next : We now have some candidates for a new Hosting Platform. After a lot of research, reading forums and user reviews and comparing different web hosts, we are down to two. We are choosing between Orange Geek and Cloudways. Well, our main criteria for choosing were: 1. speed 2. budget-friendly 3. great support 4. free SSL (HTTPS) 5. free migration. We just signed up for the 3-day free trial of Cloudways and we are testing it as we speak. They are highly recommended by the experts from the community forum of FoodBloogerPro. The Orange Geek we like because they offer a VPS for managed WordPress that should be really optimized for WordPress sites like Foxy Folksy. We will update you of our progress and decision on our next report.
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.