Overall, I’m pleased with December’s results for 2 of my niche sites. In fact, I’m pleased because until I actually put this income report together, I thought my net income was quite a bit less (I’m pretty bad at keeping a running tally in my head throughout the month).
Nevertheless, net profit, as expected, is down compared to the previous 3 months. While ad revenue did increase on a RPM basis, it did not increase sufficiently to offset the increase in traffic costs. As you can imagine, buying traffic in December is very, very expensive.
Nevertheless, my 2 niche sites on which I report incomes remained decently profitable.
Please note this income report pertains to 2 niche sites of mine. It does NOT include net income from Fat Stacks or my local offline marketing clients.
Niche Site #1 (Large Global Online Magazine Style Website):
Display Ad Revenue: $96,736.90
Affiliate Commission Revenue: $4,378.91
Total revenue for site 1: $101,015.80
I explain how I generate this revenue from these types of sites in my guide here.
Niche Site #2 (Targeted Niche Site):
Affiliate commission revenue: $6,638.39
What really excites me about niche site #2 is that I did not have to do anything in December (or pretty much all of 2014) to generate this growing monthly net income. I explain this model here.
TOTAL REVENUE BOTH SITES: $107,654.20
Expenses (Both Sites):
- LeadPages: $67
- AWeber: $149
- Bluehost: $5.95
- WebSynthesis Hosting (review): $147.00
- Qwaya: $149
- Dropbox: $10.99
- Viral Sweep: $49
- Giveaway Prize: $200
- SEM Rush: $69
- Amazon S3 Server: $967.92
- Facebook Ads: $49,191.87
- Outbrain Ads: $21,297.48
- LongerDays (outsourcing services): $4,680
Total Expenses in December 2014 (both sites): $76,984.21
Net Profit for Both Niche Sites: $30,669.99
1. Giveaway: In December I ran a giveway for one niche site. I used Viral Sweep software and offered two $100 Amazon gift cards. The goal of the giveaway was to attract more email subscribers. The giveaway was not nearly as successful as I’d hoped. It was not a success for 3 reasons.
First, the prize I chose wasn’t that great (two $100 Amazon gift cards).
Second, I didn’t promote it as much as I should have.
Third, Facebook no longer permitted forcing shares in order to participate in giveaways which resulted in much less viral action.
I learned a lot doing the giveaway and concluded it wasn’t worth doing again, at least for the time being.
2. Paid Traffic Costs: Facebook ad and Outbrain ad costs increased substantially in December while ad revenue and affiliate commissions did not increase sufficiently. The result was lower profit margins.
3. New Software: I’m always trying new software. In December I upgraded to a paid Drop box subscription. I also signed up for SEM Rush for keyword research.
Facebook Ads Expense
Outbrain Ads Expense:
The biggest issue I must address and hope to solve for December 2015 is how to minimize lost net income in a high-traffic cost environment. I believe the only solution will be to continue improving affiliate commissions, which continue to generate a very small percentage of profits. However, I’m investing significantly in affiliate-oriented content in 2015 which I hope will grow throughout the year.
Learn How I Do This:
If you’re interested in the step-by-step details on how I publish these 2 types of niche sites, check out my guides.
1. Authority blogging guide: This guide sets out how I launch and publish my global magazine style authority niche sites.
2. Passive income niche site guide: This guide explains exactly how I set up micro-niche sites designed to generate passive income.
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.