As a blogger, I sometimes feel cold, probably because I’m surrounded by so many drafts. 😀 One draft I’ve been meaning to publish is today’s post, which is about my blogging income. I like to be upfront about the money I make from side hustles. Regular readers will know I earn about $10K a year from rent, $6K from dividends, etc. Recently my online income has grown to the point where I feel like I should address it. So in the interest of transparency I’d like to share a bit about my online income. The tl;dr version is that I make about $500 a year blogging. Details below.
I started monetizing Freedom 35 about 3 years ago. Prior to that the blog didn’t make any money. I usually spend around 5 hours a week blogging, generally writing 2 posts per week. So in terms of hourly rate it appears my writing efforts make a jaw-dropping $1.92 per hour, haha. 🙂 Just to be clear this post is not about how to make money online, or how to monetize a website. There’s no shortage of experts out there who claim to have the secret sauce to build a successful online empire. But the main purpose of this post is to provide disclosure to readers.
My blog’s main source of revenue comes from Google Adsense. It allows me to place ads like the ones on the right side of this page. These ads earn about $20 to $25 a month. 🙂 Due to the Terms of Service agreement with Adsense I can’t show all the details of my earnings. But here’s a quick peek at my performance from a screenshot I took last month.
I had to hide some numbers with black bars for legal purposes, but the summary gives a good overview of what I’ve earned over the last 2 quarters. The minimum balance for a payout with Adsense is $100. This means my earnings accumulate every month until $100 is reached, and then the entire balance is paid out. As we can see the last payment on record was back in January 2015, lol. But after I took this screenshot last month I was paid $121. 🙂 Basically it takes several months for me to reach the $100 threshold so I only receive 2 or 3 payments a year from Google Adsense.
I also make some money from other blogging sources such as affiliate marketing and direct ads. Usually they make about $20 a month on average. If anyone signs up with bluehost or grouplend using the links on my blog then I would get a small commission. Again, advertising partners don’t allow publishers to share details, but I can say that so far I’ve had 3 successful sales across all my affiliate programs, so big thanks to whoever you 3 people are. 🙂
In summary, this blog generates on average about $40 a month, or $500 a year total. But it varies widely from month to month. Subtract the cost of running a website like hosting and security software and the net income looks more like $300 a year, lol.
I started blogging 5 years ago as a hobby. My goal was to track my finances, and share my debt, lifestyle, and investing experiences with other folks. 🙂 I’m lucky that I was able to find a way to generate some income from my blog along the way but further monetization isn’t a priority for me right now. My purpose for the blog hasn’t changed since the beginning. And I’d rather focus on other ways to make money like the stock market. 🙂
I don’t include my blogging income in my regular monthly updates because I want to keep my financial statements on the blog simple and concise on. I doubt $40 of extra income a month will have any meaningful impact when my other income sources are thousands of dollars and my net worth is nearly at $400,000. However I do include my blog earnings in the “other” category of my annual income/expenses breakdown at the end of each year.
The blogging experience is very individual. There are blogs that are more popular than mine but earn less than $100 a year. There are also newer blogs that’s only been around for 1 or 2 years but are already generating thousands of dollars a month. A lot of it depends on marketing, SEO, and connecting with the right people.
In the end, it’s all about goals and priorities. Some people blog just for the fun of it. They want their family and friends to read their stories. If they accomplish that then they are successful. 🙂 Other people start blogs with the intent of making money. I have blogging friends who have started successful websites and are showing others how to make money doing it as well. Some of them earn more than $10,000 a year from their sites so I know it’s possible to legitimately earn serious money online, as long as you dedicate enough time and effort. Like most things in life you get what you put in. 🙂
Random Useless Fact
Donuts have holes in the middle so the insides of the cakes would cook as evenly as the outsides.