How to start a profitable blog: June 2019 Income Report (Part 2)
Welcome to my second ever Income Report.
This is Part 2 of June 2019.
If you haven’t been following so far, I split the first month into two parts.
The first was to document the creation and setup of the new blog.
The second part (this one) is looking back on the month and a general overview of everything that happened.
To me, it feels like a lot has happened this month, but on the face of it – to you guys – it looks like nothing changed.
All the work seems to have gone on behind the scenes.
Tweaking this and changing that.
Let’s jump right in to see what has happened since my last update.
So what happened in June?
In Part 1 I said I would publish at least a piece of content, but not to expect too much from the first month.
Well it turns out that I was wrong about the content, but right about not expecting much.
I didn’t publish any content this month
Aside from the Income Report, I didn’t manage to get any content live after all.
Oh the shame…
The problem is – I’ve been working on a really in-depth guide on how to start a blog.
I know – I shouldn’t be making excuses…
But it’s a mammoth guide and has taken over 30 hours of writing so far.
Until I publish that guide we won’t get a good idea of how the blog is growing as I have no rankable content for SEO to kick in.
I hear you saying “John, why didn’t you just launch with 5-6 good pieces of content? That way you could do SEO while you write more content”.
Yeah, I get you.
That would be the sensible thing to do.
That’s what I would recommend you do if you’re starting a blog today.
But I didn’t do that… for one good reason.
I’m experimenting with this blog.
I want to see what it takes to grow a successful blog from scratch.
If I launch with a bunch of pre-written articles then it’s not a fair test.
Transparency is a valuable learning tool. It’s why I’m even writing these Income Reports.
And I want you to see what it looks like to have no content and slowly gain more traffic post by post.
So we will have to wait for July’s Income Report to see the results from publishing some content.
My URL got blocked by Facebook
Something pretty bad happened…
After I published my first blog post earlier in the month, I went to share it on Facebook.
And then I realised.
Yep. You read that right.
Facebook are completely blocking the url johnfowler.co from being posted anywhere on their platform 🙁
Every time something is shared, they get the error: “Your message couldn’t be sent because it includes content that other people on Facebook have reported as abusive“.
That means that none of my readers – or myself – can share anything from my website.
Which really sucks for the first month of being live!
To make things worse I have no idea why it’s being blocked, so I don’t know where to even start to get it fixed!
This is definitely not the great start to the blog that I wanted.
While I try and get my URL unblocked, there’s not a lot of social media promotion I can do.
So the numbers shown later in the report are going to be worse than I would have wanted as I was expecting to get some traffic from Facebook.
I started a Facebook Group
Despite not being able to share my website, I thought I would go ahead and set up a new Facebook Group on blogging.
Facebook Groups can be a great way to build a community around a niche and Facebook are investing heavily in them at the moment.
My end goal is to create a valuable resource for new bloggers and drive traffic off of Facebook to grow my email list.
So I created the Group: Start & Grow Your Blog.
Come and join, ask for help or give some advice to other members.
Whatever stage you’re at, would love to have you in the community.
I will also add the member stats for this group to my monthly income reports from now on.
The numbers for June
In Part 1 I had no numbers to share.
Everything was at 0 as it was a brand new blog.
Now in Part 2, not a lot has changed.
The lack of content and promotion means the blog has hardly grown.
I have outlined the key numbers below along with the income figures.
I saw a total of 29 unique visitors to the site during the 18 or so days that the blog has been live.
This really could have been better.
But it’s better than nothing, and it can only get better from here!
Let’s see how the traffic goes next month with a few articles under our belt.
An email list is something I wanted to build and focus on from day 1.
I’ve added 2 emails to the list this month, and they both came in the first 48 hours of launching the blog.
I’m using ConvertKit to manage and send emails to my list.
So far it’s been amazing – although I haven’t got the numbers to really sink my teeth into yet.
I’ve integrated ConvertKit into Thrive Leads to collect emails on the blog.
I might write some posts soon on how I set up Thrive and the automation I’ve got going on ConvertKit.
We’ll see how it goes.
Profit & Loss
|SiteGround WordPress Hosting (12 months upfront)||(75)|
|Domain Name (1 year)||(9)|
|ConvertKit Email Marketing (Free trial)||(0)|
|Premium WordPress Theme (Lifetime licence)||(59)|
|Thrive Themes Membership (12 months upfront)||(274)|
Yep – that’s 417 dollars in loss at the end of the first month.
It looks a lot worse than it is.
I chose to pay for most things in one annual upfront payment, as they work out more expensive if paid monthly.
I also decided to purchase some costly services like the Thrive Themes Membership and a premium WordPress theme.
These overheads could have been avoided or delayed until later on.
There are also free alternatives to some of these.
But I know how effective the these tools are for increasing the conversion rate of your blog.
I have invested now… at an early stage – knowing that it will pay off significantly in the future.
It can be really difficult to see all these charges leaving the bank in the early days of business, with very little (if anything) coming in.
But it’s important to keep moving forward and not to let it bring you down.
Too many bloggers quit in the first few months when they don’t see any revenue.
Or when they see that they only made $0.10 from their Google AdSense account when they just have 450 monthly visitors.
Everyone goes through this.
Even for those bloggers that now make $50,000 or more per month.
Don’t be disheartened by their profitability.
They were in the same boat as you at some point. They’ve just been going longer than you.
Ultimately it looks like I have a long way to go until this blog is anywhere near profitable.
But these figures really don’t bother me.
Next month I need to focus on content creation, as that is what the blog is lacking at the moment.
What’s the plan for next month?
The big thing for me in July will be to get some content published.
I want to get the guide on starting a blog finished.
And I’m thinking of writing about being blocked by Facebook and how to overcome it.
Speaking of which, getting unblocked is going to be key for promotion in the next month or two, so I really hope Facebook get back to me and resolve that ASAP.
Fingers crossed things will start looking a bit more positive next month.
It’s your turn. Get Involved!
Are you thinking of starting a blog?
Or currently in the process of growing one?
Leave a comment below and let me know about your plans.
If you enjoyed this post – it would be great if you could give it a share!