Another month of blogging wrapped up, and it was a crazy one.
For starters, I despise the month of August, just in general. It’s my worst month of the year every single year like clockwork. I can pretend to like summer during June and July, but by the time August rolls around, I’m just over the hot weather and ready for cozying up under fall blankets and lighting pumpkin-scented candles and such.
ANYWAY. Blogging. 🙂
August was an emotional whirlwind for my blog. I started the month strong, went through a very dark two week period during which I made literally no income, and then bounced back and kicked my July income’s ass in the back half of the month. 😉
Something that I need to remember about blogging income is that it’s not steady like receiving a bi-monthly paycheck from a 9-5 job. It almost always comes through in waves. Not freaking out during the trough of the wave is key to not missing out on the gloriousness of the crest. (If I just lost you there, do a quick Google search for “Parts of a Wave” and we’ll be on the same page again. Promise. 😉 )
What Was Going on Before This Month?
You can read all about it in my July 2017 Income Report—my first income report ever!
August 2017: My Second Traffic and Income Report
This post contains affiliate links. Please read our full disclosure for details.
August 2017 Total Pageviews: 27,569 (+ vs. 15,755 in July 2017)
August 2017 Total Users: 21,975 (+ vs. 11,775 in July 2017)
I’m still in a bit of shock when I look at these web traffic numbers. This is really where I feel like my persistance and hard work has been paying off the most. Not too long ago I was reading another blogger’s traffic and income report and looking at those page views that were 10,000, 20,000,…hell, even 1,00 monthly pageviews seemed completely out of reach. A pipe dream.
But, loves? It’s not impossible. Take a look at every monthly pageview total I’ve had since starting this blog:
April 2017 Total Pageviews: 472
May 2017 Total Pageviews: 1,144
June 2017 Total Pageviews: 7,484
July 2017 Total Pageviews: 15,755
August 2017 Total Pageviews: 27,569
It doesn’t happen overnight, and it doesn’t “just happen”, but if you work strategically, it’s entirely possible to increase your blog traffic…and your blogging income along the way.
Top 5 Posts of August 2017:
Best Pregnancy Movies to Watch When You’re Pregnant (4,306 pageviews)
Quick Hocus Pocus Filming Locations to Visit in Salem, Massachusetts (4,028 pageviews)
5 Breastmilk Boosting Tips for Moms With a Naturally Low Supply (3,493 pageviews)
Build a Breastmilk Freezer Stash With a Low Milk Supply (3,458 pageviews)
25 Breastmilk-Boosting Superfoods (3,103 pageviews)
Pinterest is still my #1 source of web traffic across the board. My ultra-effective Pinterest strategy, which centers around using Tailwind and Board Booster, really paid off this month as I got my first viral Pin! (It’s this one.)
You may have noticed that my #1 blog post for August 2017 (Best Pregnancy Movies to Watch When You’re Pregnant) was published on August 27, 2017. That means that I received over 4,000 page views on a brand new blog post in 4 days. Crazy, right??
August 2017 End of Month Followers: 7,755 (+ vs. 7,216 in July 2017)
Goal for September 2017: 8,000
This month has been much more about engaging on Instagram than trying to just gain followers, and it will be the same in September. I’m leaving my follower goal at 11,100 again.
August 2017 End of Month Followers: 11,036 (+ vs. 10,942 in July 2017)
Goal for September 2017: 11,100
The most impactful thing a new blogger can do with Facebook? Get involved in Facebook groups. (And don’t get overwhelmed when you do.)
Any successful blogger will tell you that you really can’t go at it alone. Joining Facebook groups of like-minded bloggers has turned out to be an incredible resource and support system for me, especially the private Facebook group just for bloggers who are taking Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, and a few groups of my fellow mom bloggers.
August 2017 End of Month Followers: 340 (+ vs. 152 in July 2017)
Goal for September 2017: 425
I was able to use my growing Twitter account to help promote a few sponsored blog posts that I booked through Linqia in August, which really helped drive traffic! I also made my first affiliate sale through Twitter this month! I’ll get to that more in the income section of this report.
August 2017 End of Month Followers: 1,099 (+ vs. 717 in July 2017)
Goal for September 2017: 1,250
Well, I gained a few Google+ followers this month. 🙂 Still haven’t done much with it other than post content every now and then. Maybe a strategy will develop at some point down the road. For now, keeping my follower goal the same for next month and seeing what happens.
August 2017 End of Month Followers: 37 (+ vs. 23 in July 2017)
Goal for September 2017: 50
Income and Expenses
Okay, loves. Let’s take a look at that money for this month. 🙂
There are two ways that most bloggers report income: when the actual money reaches their bank accounts, or when the money is earned through a particular program.
Because I’m interested in seeing how I do on a monthly basis, I choose to report my income based on when it’s earned so that it directly correlates to my monthly strategies and web traffic. This helps give me a clear picture of what’s working and what’s generating real results.
August 2017 Income
My August 2017 income came from 4 sources:
1. Affiliates: $90.40
2. Sponsored Content: $216.60
3. Advertising: $54.22
4. Products and Services: $25
August 2017 Monthly Total: $386.22 (+ vs. $205.75 in July 2017)
And now for some specifics….
1. Bluehost: $65
Staring a self-hosted blog with Bluehost is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
It was nerve-wracking in those first few months when I was trying to learn how to operate my own blog, but Bluehost has made it super easy for me with their 24/7 customer support—which I’ve used about 100 times in the past few months for all of my annoying little newbie blogger questions ;).
If you’re interested in starting your own self-hosted blog for under $4/month with Bluehost, you can sign up here with my special discount link. Feeling completely lost? Follow my detailed step-by-step instructions on how to start a blog here.
2. Amazon: $23.68
Amazon Affiliates is fantastic for brand new bloggers. The application/approval process is quick and easy, and once you’re in you can start recommending products that you already use and love.
3. Maven: $1
If you haven’t heard of Maven before, it’s basically a Pinterest-esq platform that allows you to recommend your favorite products from lots of different brands, and make a commission off each sale! I didn’t really get to play around with Maven as much as I would have liked this past month, but hope to during September.
4. Etsy: $0.72
So I tried something that was a little outside of my comfort zone on the last day of August.
I dug into my go-to guide on all things affiliate marketing— the amazing course Making Sense Out of Affiliate Marketing from Michelle Schroeder-Gardner (who, side note, has already made over a million dollars this year from blogging and truly knows what she’s talking about when it comes to affiliate marketing) —and then…I tweeted out an affiliate link promoting a really great sale that Etsy had going on!
And you know what? I made my very first Etsy affiliate sale in less that 24 hours! Woohoo! I’ve already made a few more sales for September and am excited to see what can happen as we enter the holiday season.
You can apply to become an Etsy affiliate through Awin. You’ll be required to pay $5 when you sign up, but you get that $5 back in its entirety when you make your first affiliate sale. Sign up for Awin here.
1. Linqia: $161.60
I’m new to Linqia this month, and already I’m in love!
Linqia is an influencer network that connects online influencers (such as bloggers) with amazing brands to work on sponsored posts and social media campaigns. There are a few minimum requirements that your blog will need to meet before you’re approved (e.g. you have to have either 2500 social media followers or unique monthly visitors to your blog), but once you’re in you can start working on campaigns.
2. Direct Contact: $55
Sometimes brands or PR representatives reach out to me directly with sponsored content opportunities. Making sure that your contact information is easily available via a Contact Page on your website, as well as on your social media platforms is key to having brands contact you. If it’s not easy to figure out how to contact you—they won’t.
Google AdSense: $54.22
I’m still not sure if I’m going to continue with AdSense long-term, but until I have the chance to sit down and do my research on higher-paying advertising, this is a nice way to make a little bit of very passive extra income.
Products and Services
Blog Audit: $25
Before becoming a blogger, I used to hold jobs where I edited other people’s work a regular basis. Websites, textbooks, reports, presentations, correspondence—you name it! I’m now using that skill set to help out other mama bloggers who want to make money from blogging but aren’t quite sure where to go. Sound like you? You can read over all the details and sign up here.
August 2017 Complimentary Products, Services, and Stipends
In addition to the income from the above categories, I also received complimentary products, services, and stipends to purchase products or services. These items are not included in the income reported above, but I like to keep track of them to really grasp what I’m gaining from my blog.
Value of Complimentary Products Received: $246
Total Monthly Income: $386.22
Goals for August 2017
1. Create more content around affiliate programs that I haven’t spent much time on, including:
My main focus areas will be:
Seriously my favorite affiliate network, especially for Mom Bloggers. They have so many great partnerships with brands like Ergo, Earth Mama Organics, Gymboree, and more!
I had a little success from Awin thanks to my partnership with Etsy, but I’m interested to grow it and expand to other great brands within Awin this month.
I had a little success from Mavin this past month, and am interested in creating some new boards and seeing if I can grow my Maven income in September.
I use both of these apps frequently to save money on everyday purchases, and would love to find a way to share them with any of my readers who may not already be using them. Maybe this month I’ll actually work them into a blog post. 🙂
2. Audit and Edit Existing Blog Content
Now that I have a good amount of content posted (over 65 posts!), I want to go back and make sure everything is linked properly, do some extra proof reading, and making sure my advertising is where it needs to be.
3. Publish 8 pieces of new content
Since I’m going to be taking some time to audit and edit, I’m setting a slightly lower goal of publishing 8 pieces of new content. I have a few sponsored posts booked for September already (woohoo!), so I also want to make sure that I allot time to do those well and not feel rushed.
Final Thoughts on August 2017
I’m really glad August is over, really happy with the progress, and really, REALLY excited to see where September leads!