My First Quarterly Blog Income Report: Q1 2020

Quarterly Blog Income Report: I earned $1,651 within my first four months of blogging!

Yay! This is so exciting! This is my first time ever publishing a blog income report and will continue to do so every quarter.

I launched my blog mid-November 2019 and was quite a slow month as I was still very new and learning. That’s why I skipped my first month income report as the only thing I would have reported was $457 in startup expenses.

But starting January, I went full speed with implementing everything I had learned in my first month. And now, I can’t wait to share with you all the contributing details that allowed me to earn over $1,600 these past three months! So let’s get straight to reading the results in my blog income report.

To learn what worked this quarter and what didn’t to help me earn the $1,651, click over to this post here at the end.

Disclaimer: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means I may receive a commission if clicked at no extra cost to you. Though the opinions remain my own


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Why Am I Sharing This?

I am sharing my blog income report with you for a few reasons actually.

For You

– This is my way of being open and honest with you. Part of having blog viewers is earning their trust, and this is one way I can show you that I have nothing to hide.

– To help you learn from my mistakes so you don’t repeat them. At the end, I will share what didn’t work for me this quarter and what I plan on doing differently. This can either help you avoid making the same mistake or will give you a way to correct it as well.

– To share with you what did work so you can implement it too. Why would I only share the negative? We’re all trying to become better bloggers and I want to help you do just that! So I’ll also be providing my best practices that helped me really take off this past quarter!

For Me

– It’s a way for me to review and track my progress. If I’m being honest, I don’t look at the detailed reports. What I normally pay attention to is my day-by-day analytics to see which actions I need to take to have immediate impact. So this will give me something to reference to when I want to see my overall performance.

– It will hold me accountable on my goals. Haven’t you heard that if you publicize your goals, you are more likely to try harder? Well at the end of this post, I will be sharing with you my next quarter goals, with the next report referencing back to see if I achieved them.

– And of course, to celebrate and to give me motivation for the next quarter! Whether my results come back good or bad, it will be my driving force to do better each month to end with a great quarter. But who knows, hopefully this can give you motivation as well!

Related Post: How I Earned $1,651 in My First Four Months Blogging


Q1 2020 Summary Report

My blog income report earnings is based on when it was earned and not when it was paid out. The expenses are broken down in two ways. One is broken down into monthly payments if an annual one-time fee plan was selected. Or they fall into the one-time fee category based on when they were paid.

Total Earnings

So let’s start with the fun part! The part where I show all my hard work paying off and translating into a monetary value.

Earnings TypeAmount
Sponsored Posts$300
Affiliate Marketing$98
Sponsored Product Value$1,252
Ads$2

Total Earnings: $1,651

Sponsored Posts: I was lucky to have landed two paid sponsored posts this past quarter. Whoever said you need a lot of blog traffic and followers to land these was lying! I landed both of mine in early February, well before I had tremendous blog traffic. It’s all about quality and how you present yourself.

Affiliate Marketing: The majority of transactions came from Amazon Associates. I was sooo happy to have met my minimum three purchases prior to the 180 days. However, their payout is very small so the majority of the affiliate earnings actually came from product reviews.

Sponsored Product Value: In case you’re a bit confused on what this is, it means that I did not receive a cash payment. Instead, I received products or services in exchange for a blog post or share. Depending on what the product or service is and what my bandwidth is at the time, I may or may not accept a non-cash exchange. However, in this case, I gladly accepted two!

Ads: The only ad provider I use is Google Ads. And if you’re familiar with them, you know they pay extremelyyy low, so it makes sense that the earnings are small as well.

But as you see, even if you are just starting out, don’t think you have to wait to monetize your blog. All you have to do is believe in yourself, research, create a plan and get your name out there! The sales and money will come soon after. ♥

Related Post: 7 Ways to Make Money Blogging in 2020



Total Expenses

I hate to say this but you can’t expect to make money if you don’t invest any first. Blogging is a business, and all business require some investments in the beginning in order to start making money. And that’s exactly what I did. So even though you may be a bit shocked at the expenses amount in my blog income report, know that I am already extremely close to breaking even since I started blogging four months ago.

Reoccurring:

Like I mentioned earlier, reoccurring expense has been broken down in two different ways. It could either mean that this is a reoccurring monthly or quarterly payment. It could also mean that I have broken down the annual payment to show what the monthly cost would be. The expense types are labeled with (*) below.

ExpenseReoccuranceAmount
*BluehostMonthly$12 x 3 = $36
TailwindMonthly$15 x 3 = $45
Ivory MixQuarterly$70 x 1 = $70
**Adobe LightroomMonthly$10 x 1 = $10
**Styled Stock SocietyMonthly$25 x 1 = $25
*WP FormsMonthly$3 x 3 = $9

Total Reoccurring Expenses: $195

*paid annually but broke down monthly cost
**did not have this service the entire quarter

Bluehost: This is who I use for my website hosting. I absolutely love Bluehost and do not plan on switching anytime soon. My monthly cost are a bit higher as I did the one-year plan with a few add-ons. However, it’s time to renew, I plan on upgrading to the three-year plan to lower my monthly cost. If you haven’t decided on a host provider yet, click here to see how you can start your blog with as little as $3.95 per month!

Related Post: How To Start a WordPress Blog With Bluehost

Tailwind: This is one of those must-have investments and is hands down one main reason I have been able to boost my blog traffic so quickly. Can you imagine manually pinning 20 pins per day on Pinterest? I don’t have time for that! Tailwind let’s me schedule up to 400 pins per month, and with the new Pinterest algorithm, it covers me for 2-3 weeks! It also comes with access to Tailwind Tribes (similar to Pinterest group boards) which gives you yet another chance to promote. If you haven’t enrolled into this yet, you should highly consider it! And if you click here, you’ll get a month free just to test it out for yourself.

Ivory Mix: I had been eyeing this one for a while now and finally worked my way up to enroll into the VIP membership. Want to know what realllyyy convinced me? The fact that I was taking sooo long trying to create my own pin templates and then finding out pin templates are included in the VIP membership! That along with amazinggg stock photos, blog and social media courses, live webinars, other Canva templates and more! As a result, I can now pop out pins like crazy since I no longer have to spend time creating my own pin templates or editing my own pictures. Plus, Ivory Mix also offers free stock photos every month which you can sign up to receive here.

Styled Stock Society: So very similar to Ivory Mix, this is another stock photo directory. As I got more efficient in creating pins, the more I realized that I needed a second option. Not because Ivory Mix isn’t great but because every photographer has their own unique style. So I started by signing up to Styled Stock Society’s email list to receive free stock photos. And after two months, I realized that she had a different image style and it was exactly the second type of option I needed. So I gave in and enrolled into her Monthly membership plan. I was also so pleased to see that I now had even more pin templates to use! Check it out for yourself and sign up here to receive your free monthly downloads.

Related Post: Best Stock Photos Sites for Successful Bloggers

Adobe Lightroom: This is one of those that I was extremely hesitant to enroll into. However, I am in the process of revamping my Instagram account and adding presets to my images seems to have been working. Unfortunately, I was not able to find a free alternative to adding presets to my images so decided it would be worth investing in order to continue growing my Instagram.

Related Post: Blogging Tool to Capture & Edit Photos Like a Pro Blogger

WP Forms: Ahh so this one was a newbie mistake. Before find MailerLite as my free email marketing provider, I thought I was going to use this option. I do still use their form for my “Contact Me” page and it seems they have payment form options that I’ll be looking into soon. Luckily, this plugin is super cheap and will be trying to make the best use out of it for the year.

One-Time:

So these are the expenses that I cannot put a timeline to as they are literally just one-time expenses.

ExpenseAmount
Pinterest Ads$16
Blog Courses$576
Equipment$1,100

Total One-Time Expenses: $1,692

Pinterest Ads: So I had given Pinterest ads a try wayyyy early in the quarter to try to gain some traffic. What I quickly noticed was that if my pins weren’t meeting the Pinterest SEO, then even ads wouldn’t help me achieve such great results. Regardless, it was a learning experience.

Blog Courses: Yes, I’m a course junkie. I love to learn and especially love it when it’s put into a course format. I’ve taken many courses since I started blogging, both free and not (as you can tell). And I will say that I am so happy I have made the decisions to invest into certain blog courses so early on. You can read about the specific courses I have taken here.

Equipment: So I was a bit iffy on adding these to the expense list but in the end, my fiance convinced me I should. The reason why I was iffy was because the camera and laptop I bought are not only going to be used for blogging. However, blogging was the main driver that pushed me to buy these. The camera I bought will be used to take pictures for my travel blog and the laptop is a smaller, portable laptop to take with me when away from home so I can keep blogging. So yeah, these made it to the income report as well (highly increasing my quarterly cost).

So in the end, it was a great financial quarter. Yeah I didn’t break-even but I don’t expect to so early on. And at this rate, I will more than likely break even by next quarter! However, I do not plan to stop investing in my blog, though I am being smart and choosing which investments to make wisely.

But what about my traffic? Well, let me tell you that I definitely do not have 10K blog views monthly, although that is my ultimate end of year goal. I had much less than that and was able to monetize within my first few months.


If you want to know what worked and what didn’t, click over to this post here to find out. Also, to stay updated with my blogging tips and receive your own copy to my secret tips, make sure to subscribe below so you don’t miss a thing!


Q2 2020 Financial Goals

Are you as shocked as I am with these results? It’s definitely something to be proud of! But the business doesn’t stop here. A business is constantly evolving which means I need to define my goals for this new quarter. And don’t worry, I will continue to share my blog income report so you’ll be able to track my progress with me.

So what are my financial goals for this quarter?

– Receive two sponsored posts per month. This can be in the form of a blog post or social media post. This also includes sponsored product or services, not only cash payments. So by the end of the quarter, I should have earned at least 6 sponsored type postings. That’s triple of what I earned this month but will make sure to send out more pitches this time around.

– Earn $100 in affiliate sales per month. I am hopeful that $100 monthly is quite low and very reasonable, however I am also nervous that this goal may be set a bit high. But we shall see how I do at the end of the quarter and will make sure to improve my affiliate marketing strategies. And to help get me on the right track, I’ll be taking this course here.

– Reduce the amount of investment costs. Like I said, I am so close to breaking even since I started blogging. The two equipment purchases put me over the top so it’s time to take a break from high-cost investments. This doesn’t mean that I will not invest in something new, just not in techy gadgets.

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Let’s Get This Q2 Money!

Wow! What a great time to make money blogging. Hopefully this blog income report was able to share some light on the real world of blogging and give you motivation to push forward. Not only is blogging a great side hustle for me, but is the main career for my successful bloggers! So let’s keep working at it and our time will come. Let’s go kick some Q2 bootyyyy! 😉

How did you do this quarter? Is there any feedback you would like to share? Did this post help you define a plan for this quarter? What are your comments or questions on my blog income report? Share your thoughts below as I would love to hear from you!

And remember, there is always something to be happy for… Cheers to blogging! What are you cheering to today?

Lucy

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