Another quarter in the books with our blogging business.
Which is usually the sign to publish another income report.
These are normally one of my favorite articles to write, but for some reason, I have been feeling nervous about it.
Just being completely transparent with you.
I feel like we have almost let our readers down by not breaking the $10,000 month again this quarter.
How stupid does that sound, seriously?
We are blessed beyond belief. Last month we finished paying off our student loans ($25,000 in 5 months) using almost exclusively money earned from our blog.
With Brittany’s teaching salary and money earned from our blog this upcoming month, we should have between $8k-$10k in excess income coming in.
No, we are not a $25k, $50k, $100k per month blog yet, but I know we will get there. Like I have no doubt it’s coming.
But for now, I am enjoying the journey to the fullest.
I found it really useful to “get back to center” and stop the negative thoughts by simply praying some and realizing how blessed I am.
I am honestly living the dream.
I get to work from home, be with my daughter all day, set my own hours, and earn my own income.
Plus, LOVE running our blog. It is without a doubt what I was put on this earth to do.
So, let’s jump in and talk about what our blog has been up to over the last few months.
Our Blogging Journey So Far
It’s always fun looking back on our journey and seeing just how far we have come.
Our first year when we started our blog as a part-time side hustle we made no money until our ninth month in.
After we earned our first $50, I went to Brittany and told her that I wanted to quit my job and become a full-time blogger.
Looking at the growth we have had and the freedom we have created starting our blog has been one of the most impactful decisions in our life.
If you want to head back a few months and read some of our income reports to follow the journey a little closer have at it.
- How We Made $11,358 In One Month From Our Blog
- How We Made $4,089 in November Blogging
- How We Made $2,412 in January 2018 Blogging
Reason for Sharing Our Blog Income
We absolutely LOVE our savvy readers! Since you all support us so much it only feels right to be transparent and share our blogging journey with you.
If we did not find others blogging income reports at the beginning of our journey, chances are we would have never started our blog. They opened our eyes to the dream of “make money online” and motivated us to create the life we wanted to live.
If you are interested in starting your own blog, we put together an in-depth step-by-step tutorial that will teach you everything you need to know.
Main reasons we share our blogging income:
- To motivate others to go after their dreams. We are firm believers that life is very precious and wasting time is not an option. God put each and every one of us on this earth for a reason. Find your calling and just GO FOR IT!
- Keeping track of our monthly blog traffic and income is a great way for us to see the progression of our business. It really helps us figure out what is working well and what still needs improvement. It is also a great way to keep track of our goals and stay motivated.
- Being transparent with our readers has always been a #1 priority. We feel that publishing income reports is a great way to really open up and build trust with our readers.
- When we first came into the blogging world we had no idea there were so many ways to make money online. Our income reports are a great way to help our readers follow how we built our online business from the ground up.
- To provide an overall summary of what we have accomplished and have been working on over the last few months.
December 2018 Blogging Business Breakdown
Last month we had a really good month diversifying our income. Something we have been working really hard at doing.
If you have read our previous income reports when we broke $10,000 in a month ~40%-50% of that income came from sponsored posts.
Over the last three months, we have not really been focusing all that much time going after sponsorships.
We are moving in the direction of creating our own products and courses to sell as we know those will have a much better long-term benefit to our business.
December Traffic Breakdown
December we had another great month of traffic at over 200,000 page views. We cut back our Facebook ads over the holiday’s because ads become very expensive with so much competition.
Organic traffic has really taken off after continuing to implement strategies we learned in Stupid Simple SEO.
In fact, our SEO traffic has more than 10x since taking the course.
And of course, we are still rocking our savvy Pinterest strategy =).
December Blog Income Breakdown
Affiliate Sales: $2,395
Nice and spread out this month which we love to see. It is always a good feeling when you don’t have all your eggs in one basket.
We are really pleased with the launch of our Shopify store with basically only one product we are selling: The Budgeting Binder.
Our goal is to continue to grow our income from products we create to be our #1 income stream from our blog.
December Blog Expenses Breakdown
Facebook Ads: $318
Email Marketing: $65
BigScoots Hosting: $35
Tools & Software: $34
Shopify Sh0p: $30
Our blogging expenses have grown quite a bit since starting our blog. But like all businesses you need to invest money into them to continue to grow.
Two of our biggest monthly expenses are paying our freelancers on our Team Savvy and Facebook ads.
Paying our team members is actually my favorite expense each month. I love having the ability to help others earn money online and grow their own businesses in the process.
Blogging is nice because monthly expenses are normally anywhere from 10%-20% of your revenue which leaves you with an outstanding 80%-90% profit margin.
December Estimated Net Profit: $7,556
What’s Happened the Last Three Months
A bunch of things!
Here were the biggest projects we were working on.
- Complete website redesign and rebrand
- Launched The Savvy Couple Shop
- Moved from Trello to Asana for project management
- Created systems and procedures for just about everything in our business
- Outsourced more tasks
Focusing on creating systems and outsourcing has been HUGE for our business.
It has freed up a ton of time to focus on more high-level projects like creating products and courses.
Which for us will be our bread and butter at the end of 2019.
So, the one HUGE takeaway I want you to get from reading this income report is to start creating systems now.
Don’t wait until you get “big enough” to need to. It is never too early.
Just like our blogging Facebook group’s name Blogging With Purpose, everything you do with your blog should be done with a purpose.
Time Management is a Must
I am absolutely obsessed with protecting my time and making the most use of it.
It is our most valuable asset we have as business owners.
Over the last year, I have been able to take my estimated hourly rate from $20/hour to over $100/hour some months.
My average estimated hourly rate last year was $60/hour. That’s a 3X increase in my hourly earnings in just one year. What other career path can you do that with?
Here is what last month looked like. I only worked around 75 hours all of last month. That means I made close to $115/hour!
I basically took all of Christmas break off to recharge.
Here is a screenshot from the app I use called Be Focused.
If you are not tracking the hours you work and what you are spending your time on every month you need to be.
When it comes down to it, our estimated hourly rate is the only metric that really matters as business owners.
Increasing that number is what will unlock the freedom and power you want in life.
Our 12 Week Goals
As we continue to develop and grow our business, we found it’s more important than ever to be strategic.
After being introduced to 12 Week Year in my mastermind group I was sold.
I read through it as quickly as possible and started implementing right away.
It’s a game changer and I highly suggest investing in the book.
Here are our 12 weeks goals we are working on.
- Build our 90-day email funnel
- Grow our email list past 10,000 subscribers
- Launch our first blogging related product
I know if we can complete these goals over the next 12 weeks our blog will see substantial growth in all aspects of our business.
I am excited to see how our first 12 week year goes!
Opening Our Shopify Store
I definitely wanted to talk about our Shopify store in this income report since we plan on our shop being a huge part of our monthly income this year.
It’s absolutely out of this world! The amount of information and value she provides is incredible.
Sarah’s course helped us successfully launch our shop and earn over $500 on our first digital product.
I cannot express to you how excited I am to continue to work on building our shop and see it grow.
It’s the closest thing to passive income I have found. Once your products are created and you have traffic going to them, your shop takes care of the rest.
Brittany and I still give each other a high five everytime we hear the “cha-ching” sound go off on my phone indicating another sale in Shopify.
What is even better is knowing that we are helping families budget their money and get their finances under control.
Thoughts On Sponsored Posts
Last year we made over $15,000 in sponsorships.
These are companies that either find us or we reach out to them to partner with for dedicated posts, social media promotion, or giveaways.
They are amazing ROI (Return on Investment) for your time and actually, super fun to do when the right company comes around.
The biggest thing is never working with a company that does not match up with your branding and message.
We turn down 90% of the sponsorship requests we get in our inbox.
It is not worth promoting a company that your audience does not align with just to make some quick cash. The trust you build with your readers is far more important.
This year we want to double our sponsorship earnings to $30,000.
Our biggest challenge last year was landing them on a regular basis.
Which is why we invested in Michelle and Alexis course Making Sense of Sponsored Posts.
We learned that we were missing a quite a few pieces to really be successful with sponsorships.
This year we already have a few brands we are lined up to work with which is always exciting.
Brand New Blogging Income Tracker
One of the biggest struggles we had when we first started blogging is keeping track of all the money moving around.
So we put together this super easy to use income tracker for all bloggers to use.
The feedback we have received on it already has been excellent.
It’s always a good feeling when other people tell you how much you have helped them.
Here is what it looks like. You can grab yourself a copy to use right in The Savvy Couple Shop.
Helpful Blogging Resources
In case you have missed some of our blogging-related content over the last few months here they are.
- 25+ Best Blogging Resources That Helped Us Grow to $10,000/Month
- How to Increase Blog Traffic: 7 Tips We Used to Drive 300,000 Page Views
- Pinterest + Tailwind Traffic Strategy That Drives 100k Page Views Per Month
- 15 of the Best Stock Photo Sites Every Blogger Should Be Using
- How I Got Paid $1,250 Blogging For Just One Hour
- How to Make Money as a Blogger, Even When You’re Not an Expert
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Review: A Must Have Blogging Course
Blogging is freaking awesome!
I never in my wildest dreams thought I would have this much freedom in life and accomplish it by becoming a full-time blogger.
I mean I have dyslexia, terrible ADD, and hate writing.
Luckily, Brittany has always been super supportive and willing to help on the blog as much as her time allows being a full-time teacher and an amazing mother.
This year is going to be our “breakout” year with our blog. I can see everything coming together!
So, if you already have a blog or thinking about starting one this year, let’s do this!
Life is short. Really short.
I want to see each and every one of you take complete control over your life in 2019 and share your journey with us.