Did you notice anything different this morning (the morning of Sept 5, 2019)?
I bet your email inbox was a little less polluted.
AWeber had some technical difficulties. Scared me half-to-death actually. I went to log into AWeber and it said “Account Closed”. That woulda been the end of Fatstacks. I suppose some of you would welcome that, but I’d sure miss writing these emails.
Turned out to be tech issues.
I bet you can guess the first thing I did when I finally got inside my AWeber account?
You guessed it… I exported all my lists. I really need to do this more regularly. I do my best to send out decent emails (like this beauty), but I don’t control AWeber. They might one day decide I’m a no-good IM spamming machine and shut me down.
It seems everywhere we turn some behemoth can put us out of business just like that – the Big G, Zuck, Amazon, our email service. We’re sittin’ ducks really.
We might as well make hay while the sun shines cause you never know when the lights will go out.
Speaking of making hay when the sun shines, let’s talk about August.
I didn’t do anything different in August except take a couple of vacations.
This is my life: Keyword research. Order content. Write some content myself. Click publish. Wash, rinse and repeat.
On paper it sounds boring, but I like it. I think you do too otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this newsletter.
I did manage to grow Amazon commissions nicely, which was good.
I can see it already. I’ll kill myself getting Amazon commissions to a sizeable amount and then Amazon will chop me at the knees with another commission cut.
How’s that for optimism?
I bought a photography lighting kit for better product photos. Now and then I review random stuff I own. I like writing reviews for products I love. There aren’t many, but sometimes I buy something and it’s absolutely perfect. A delight to use.
I make these reviews pretty good. Some make money and some don’t. I don’t care all that much. I like writing about stuff I like. The problem to date is the photos don’t look very good. I just snap them with my phone under horrendous fluorescent lighting. The least I could do is slap up decent photos. Now I can if I ever open the box and figure out how to use the lights.
Maybe, just maybe, the lighting will come in handy for some Fatstacks vids. I’m not a big video guy. Mucking around with video software drives me nuts. But I can’t ignore how effective YouTube is for reaching more people.
I’m adding a third monitor to my set up just because I have an old one sitting around.
When I get that up and running I’ll be able to keep the Daily Mail open all day so I don’t miss any celeb gossip. This will be a game-changer for my productivity.
One interesting result in August was a welcome drop in Kinsta hosting cost due to optimizing thousands of images on my sites with ShortPixel.
I saved about $300. While traffic dipped a tad, it wasn’t nearly enough to account for that much hosting savings. That’ll help pay for my Netflix subscription.
Enough of the blather. Here are the numbers…
The usual monthly DISCLAIMER: This income report does NOT include revenue or expenses from fatstacksblog.com. I only include revenue and expenses from my other sites. It’s not helpful for you for me to tell you how much I make telling you how much I make.
All figures are in USD.
- Niche Site 1 Revenue: $36,318
- Niche Site 2 Revenue: $5,675
- Niche Site 3 Revenue: $2,299
- Niche Site 4 Revenue: $753
- Niche Site 5 Revenue: $35
- Niche Site 6 Revenue: $18
- Niche Site 7 Revenue: $17
Total Revenue all 7 sites: $45,115 (July revenue was: $46,569)
Expenses for all niche sites
I lump together all expenses for all 7 niche sites because it’s difficult, impractical and unhelpful to spend the time allocating each expense to each site.
- Kinsta hosting: $1,365
- Amazon AWS (still host some images on this): $166
- AWeber: $576
- VAs: $2,750
- Cloudflare: $23
- Techsmith (Jing storage): $8
- Ahrefs: $179
- Shutterstock photos: $800
- istockphoto: $299
- Quickbooks: $10
- Jotform: $40
- Tailwind: $84
- MeetEdgar: $50
- Elink.io: $15
- Grammarly: $45
- OptinMonster: $99
- LeadPages: $79
- Clearscope: $480
Total expenses for 7 niche sites: $7,068
Net Income: $38,047 USD (July was $37,450)
Content investment in Aug 2019
After a few months of big content investments, I didn’t need to spend so much. I have some inventory to be published so I saved some content cost in August. Here’s the breakdown:
- Content Development Pros: $4,802
- Writer Access: $0
- Textbroker: $1,000 (I use Textbroker when I need something specific in a day or two).
Total content investment for August 2019: $5,802
Net income after content investment: $32,245 USD
I explain here why I extract content cost from expenses.
Here are a few screenshots that formed a significant part of my ad revenue in August 2019:
Below is a quarterly affiliate check I received for Q2 promotions. It’s associated with niche site #2 in these reports. FYI, I ammortize these monthly in the income reports since it’s payment for 3 months.
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 that’s “the best blogging email newsletter around.”
Hyperbole? Maybe, but go check it out to see what some readers say.
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.