May’s income is mostly based on what I earned in March, and March was a weird month. The amount I earned from my blog started picking up again in some ways but dropping in others. Amazon made some big changes, which I’ll talk about more below, and it had a big effect on my blogging income. But overall May was better than April, and I can’t complain. Take a look at my blogging income report for last month.
How much I earned from blogging: May 2017
As a reminder, I’m reporting my income in the month that I was paid, not the month I technically earned the money. And these numbers do NOT include money I earn outside of my own websites. I also do VA (virtual assistant) work for three other websites, and I occasionally write freelance articles.
$1,808.89 – AdThrive (Note: AdThrive requires a minimum of 100,000 pageviews per month)
$1,035.16 – Amazon Affiliate Commission
$135.53 – Google Adsense
$117.73 – Shareasale (Viator, Tailwind)
$57.91 – CJ (various hotel, flight, and tour booking sites)
$48.57 – Amazon CPM ads
$9.94 – ebook sales
$3,213.73 – Total Income from Blogging
$118.30 – KeySearch (keyword tool – discounted price, I pay this annually)
$15 – MailChimp
$9 – Genius Links
$0 – Themify (website theme – I pay this annually)
$0 – Crash Plan (back-up system – I pay this annually)
$0 – Tailwind (Pinterest scheduling – I pay this annually)
$0 – HostGator (web hosting – I pay this annually)
$142.30 – Total
>>Want to make more money from your blog? You can! See why I love making money from affiliate marketing.
Notes about my blogging income
As I mentioned earlier, Amazon made some big changes recently. Effective March 1st, they got rid of their old commission scheme, which was mostly based on number of items. So my commission percentage would increase from 4% and up as the month went on and more items were purchased through my links. I was doing well the last few months and got up to 7.5% on most items.
But now they have a fixed percent based on the type of item. Luggage is 7%, which is good, but knowing I was likely to get 7.5% or even higher if my site kept improving is a little frustrating. And any other items people buy could end up even lower than 7% depending on what category they’re in.
My guess is that my Amazon income would’ve been higher this month with the old rates, based on the number of items purchased through my links, but I can’t know the exact amount without some painful digging and lots of math. It’s not worth my time to figure out what could’ve been.
Obviously this impacted bloggers in some niches more than others, so I’m lucky. It could’ve been much worse. But this is why it’s so important to diversify. I’m happy to have so much advertising income, but I’d love to improve other areas as well.
One way I’m hoping to increase my income is by writing better posts for search traffic. This requires some keyword research in order to find out what phrases people use to find information. So I made the decision to purchase KeySearch which is a keyword tool some other bloggers have been raving about. I got it on sale, but if you click the link above and use code KSDISC, you’ll get 20% off your purchase of KeySearch.
What’s working and what’s not
I think it’s pretty clear that advertising with the AdThrive network is something that’s definitely working for me. If you’re a blogger with high traffic, I highly recommend them.
One expense that’s always listed here is Genius Links. This is a service to help bloggers earn Amazon affiliate commission from multiple countries. Before I signed up for this service, if a reader from Canada clicked an Amazon link and purchased something from the Canadian site, I wouldn’t get credit for it. But Genius Links redirects readers based on where they’re located. That way I can earn commission from the Amazon sites in several other countries.
It’s not a lot because most of my readers are from the US, but May was the second time I got paid from a non-US Amazon site. So far I’m earning more than I’m paying for the monthly service, so I’m happy with that.
What’s not working is my time management and balance. I work roughly 10 hours a week for VA clients, and I need to do my own blog work. You would think 10 hours a week would still leave me with plenty of time to work on my own sites, but it isn’t working out that way. I’m starting to panic about how much I need to get done to make sure I don’t have to work (much?) during my upcoming trips. I need to work on being more disciplined with my time.
Updates from me and Andy
You guys, it finally started getting warm in Berlin. FINALLY. We’ve spent Sunday afternoons sitting in the park with a few drinks, and we’re eating our lunch on our balcony. I’m so happy to be able to leave my jacket at home.
Andy and I took a 10 day trip to Poland from the end of May to beginning of June. This time we visited Krakow and Gdansk, both new cities to us, and once again we were reminded of what a wonderful country Poland is. The architecture is pretty, the food is delicious (and cheap!) and, for us, it’s easy to get to. We’ll be back many more times, I’m sure.
Andy is attending a two day board game festival in Berlin in July, so I’ve booked a two week solo trip. Two days is like two weeks, right? I’ll be in Bosnia for about 10 days and then Montenegro for about 4 days. My friend Gigi is staying in a town about halfway between Sarajevo and Mostar, so I’ll see her for a couple days and check off a new country. And Montenegro is so close, I couldn’t resist tacking on a another new country.
You might also enjoy:
- April 2017 Income Report
- On Living a Non-Traditional Life
- How Do You Make Money From a Blog?
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course