I’m gonna stick my neck out with this post and give you some concrete numbers so that you get a rough idea how many blog posts you need to publish to hit a 6-figure annual income from a website.
Here’s my answer: you need 1,250 published posts to make six figures per year from display ads.
Here’s how it adds up to 1,250 published posts:
- Target monthly revenue: $8,333
- Ad revenue per 1,000 visitors: $20
- Average number of visitors per article per month: 350
- Do the math: 1,250 posts x 350 visitors at $20 per 1,000 visitors = $8,740.
The above is both true and nonsense. Let me explain.
What’s true about it?
The numbers I use are very possible. For example earning $20 per 1,000 visitors is pretty standard with AdThrive and Mediavine. Getting an average of 350 monthly visitors per published post is totally within the range of possible and dare I say probable.
Hence given those assumptions are totally within normal range, it’s very conceivable that when you publish 1,250 blog posts, you’ll be earning or primed to earn 6 figures per year,.
How is it nonsense?
It’s nonsense because every site is different. Some earn $7 per 1,000 visitors while others $45 per 1,000 visitors. Some average 150 visitors per article per month while others 1,000. There are many, many variables involved.
But at least it’s something to shoot for
If you don’t mind buying into averages, my numbers above just might give you the motivation to stick with it until you hit that magical six-figures per year from blogging.
I’ve done it recently
I have one site that echoes the above pretty close. It currently earns $6,500 to $8,500 per month from 800 published posts. The average word count per post is around 1,600 words which is 1,280,000 total words. It earns pretty much exactly $20 per 1,000 visitors. It averages about 325 visitors per month per article. There is nothing fancy about this site… just straight up information.
Number of posts is a better guiding light than time
It’s more logical to suggest X number of posts to hit six figures than 3 years. Three years is so vague. One person might be able to write and publish 6,000 posts in three years. Another person might be lucky to publish 300 posts in three years.
1,250 posts is still vague Jon. How many words is that?
This is another important piece of information for a couple reasons. First, content cost is often based on cost per word so it’s always good to convert desired output to cost of the inputs.
Another reason it’s important to expand this analysis to total number of words is a post could be 400 or 4,000 words. Which is it? It generally takes way more time (or costs more money) to publish 4,000 words over 400 words.
I’m in a stick-my-neck-out mood today and will suggest that the average post is 1,300 words.
1,300 words per article for 1,250 articles totals 1,625,000 words.
There you have it. You need to publish 1,625,000 words of content to earn 6 figures per year.
These are very, very rough guidelines
I hope you sense the “take it with a grain of salt” I intend to infuse this blog post with because you really ned to take everything above with a grain of salt. Let’s put it this way. The averages above could and have resulted in six figures per year. It doesn’t mean you will.
If it’s not a sure thing, why publish this article at all?
I published this article because on the balance, IMO, it’s more helpful than hurtful. I know when I was starting out, I really got inspired reading and hearing what was possible and what it took to get there. I knew my results could be different. I just wanted to know what was possible to give me something to shoot for.
Suppose you read the above and resolve to go hammer and tongs at publishing a ton of content and suppose you hit the 1,250 published posts in 18 months but you only hit $4,000 per month. Would you be outraged at me? I think not. I suspect you’d be grateful that you were inspired enough to buckle down and achieve what you achieved. After all, $4,000 per month from a blog is an amazing achievement. It’s also just around the corner from six figures.
Another consideration is how fast you publish the 1,625,000 words
If you bang out the 1.625 million words in 9 months, that’s probably not enough time to rank all that content so that you are earning the six figures. It would potentially happen but you can’t speed up search engines.
Don’t let Google delays hold you back. If you can bang out 1.625 words in 9 months, go for it. You won’t be disappointed.
Jon runs the place around here. He pontificates about launching and growing online publishing businesses, aka blogs that make a few bucks. His pride and joy is the email newsletter he publishes.
In all seriousness, Jon is the founder and owner of a digital media company that publishes a variety of web properties visited and beloved by millions of readers monthly. Fatstacks is where he shares a glimpse into his digital publishing business.