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One of the fascinating parts of blogging is that there is great potential to make a decent income. However, it’s a long-term game; a proverbial marathon, and most bloggers are not able to successfully monetize their blogs. Many bloggers don’t get past 10 blog posts, and it’s when the number of posts continues to increase that affiliate income begins to really take off. Here’s my first blogging income report, and exactly how I did it.
Note: I am not including direct sales income on this report, simply because it is not possible to definitively determine what sales came from the blog, and what was from marketing efforts elsewhere.
First, let me take a moment to tell you about this year in blogging. I launched my blog in August of 2017, after completing SassySuite’s Blogging Boot Camp. In March, I was at nearly 50 published blog posts, and then I announced that I was leaving LuLaRoe to pursue Color Street. That meant that a large number of LuLaRoe-centric posts needed to be deleted, as they had become a misrepresentation of the purpose of my blog.
I deleted 17 blog posts that were currently funneling people to my now non-existent LuLaRoe business, and began to rebuild to have blog posts that fit more of a lifestyle/affiliate marketing blog. Along with that, I’ve been integrating Color Street posts. As of August 26th, 2018, I have 42 blog posts (this one makes #43).
Blogging Income Report: Hosting Services
For my first year, I had hosting through SassyWeb Services, which is powered by GoDaddy. While the services were great, there was not an affiliate program, so that did not fit my personal blogging strategies. I did some research for hosting services, and overwhelmingly, SiteGround was recommended.
You can read a full blog post about why I made the switch, but so far, SiteGround has been my number one source of affiliate income. I LOVE SiteGround, and highly recommend it to everyone. Their live chat is AMAZING, and they are quick to help me anytime I have a question. 10/10, would recommend.
Total income earned: $200
Blogging Income Report: Amazon Affiliate Services
Amazon is one of my favorite places to shop. In fact, it was the #1 store online, and accounted for 178 BILLION worth of sales in 2017. The convenience of Prime 2-day delivery appeals to all, not to mention, it seems that everything is available on Amazon. Throughout this blog, there are many links to Amazon products, which brings me 5% of the costs of purchases made using my links. I LOVE Amazon because it’s easy, both for shoppers and for affiliates alike.
Total income earned: $118.40
Blogging Income Report: Share-a-Sale & Miscellaneous
Rather than using Google Ads on my blog, I found that Share-a-Sale allowed me to be more strategic with the “ad space” on my blog. I can use the sidebars to place strategic “ads” for services and such that I would like to promote – like SiteGround or Tailwind. Share-a-sale is also great because you can get payouts for each affiliate who joins under you – win for all levels of referrals! Seriously you should go ahead and join here.
I’m also an affiliate for BluChic themes. These gorgeous themes are delightful and feminine, and perfect for a blogger, especially one who is in any kind of “boss babe” niche, like many of my friends are.
Outstanding income: $34.98 (Share-a-Sale has a $50 min payout).
BluChic outstanding income: $19.75 (also has a $50 min payout – I think – I forgot, really. EDIT: I was paid out for this on September 1. Looks like a 90 day wait? Either way, WIN!).
Blogging Income Report: Google Ads
Full disclosure: I hated Google Ads. I hated it so much that I disconnected them from my blog. Google ads didn’t fit my blogging strategy, as they’d often automatically show ads for competing products. Imagine, if you will, researching website hosting, and landing on my blog post about why I chose SiteGround. Then, you’d see ads for Bluehost or for GoDaddy hosting. Since one of my reasons for posting about SiteGround is to get people to click my affiliate link and choose SiteGround, then having ads for GoDaddy or Bluehost just doesn’t make sense.
Total income earned: $0 (I have $28.68 outstanding in my account, but I am uncertain if I will ever reach the $100 minimum required for a payout).
As you can see, in about a year, I made about $400 in affiliate income. While many bloggers make that kind of income in a month, I am excited about that year’s worth of work. It’s a start, and it feels super special because I had a lot of major changes in my blogging and income strategies. Most of my work up to this point has not been strategic or focused, so any income feels like a win.
A month ago, I made a bank account specifically for all affiliate payouts. All money earned from the blog is going straight into that account. My crazy big goal is for the blog’s affiliate income to grow to the point where it can pay for our house someday.
So what do you think? Are you breaking into affiliate marketing? What is your favorite source of affiliate income?
I love reading an income report that shows realistic growth! I see so many income reports in the 6 figures, and that’s just not what happens for everyone. I’m very happy with my growth, even if I’m not making a $1000 a month. Maybe someday! 🙂
It helps a TON to hear realistic numbers…I know that I have been flabbergasted on multiple occasions when reading about explosive growth…it’s not everyone’s story, and they don’t always show how much of that was used to pay advertising fees too. Though I sure wouldn’t mind six figures…ha!