17th Month of making money from Blogging!
Blogging Income Report – November 2019
Holiday season is upon us, which is a super busy time of the year for everyone! November was another crazy month for me and I really can’t believe that we only have one month left in 2019! Seriously – where has the time gone?!
We’re almost a week into December, which means it’s time for another monthly income report!
I’ve been experiencing a decline in traffic since August and I’m sad to say that the decline continued in November. It still feels like my blog is crashing and I’ll be honest – I’m pretty discouraged!
I am hopeful that the decline is partially caused by the season, but I’d be delusional to think that there isn’t anything I could do to improve it. (I just don’t know what.)
Honestly, my mind is pretty muddled when it comes to blogging right now and I’m already in holiday mode LOL, so part of me wants to just take some time off and hit the blog hard at the start of the New Year.
Barely any changes were made in the last month, so I don’t have a whole lot to say in this income report, but I felt it was my duty to you to still write one for the month!
If you want to read any of my other income reports (all the way from month 1!), please browse through!
Here are my previous three:
Without further ado, let’s get started!
Affiliate links may be used in this post, which I may receive a commission from, at no extra cost to you. You can read my full disclosure here.
Why do I publish Income Reports?
If this is your first income report and you somehow just stumbled on this post, you must think it’s super weird that I’m sharing my income on the Internet for the whole world to see!
It is pretty weird… but, it’s definitely no uncommon in the blogging world!
And if you’re not new to income reports, you probably already know why I write income reports!
1. Transparency is very important
I didn’t get to where I am in my blogging career without a lot of hard work and it would be a complete lie to say that making money from blogging is easy.
While anyone can technically create a blog and publish posts, it takes a lot of effort and determination to make a substantial amount of money from it.
Far too often, I see income reports implying that blogging is some sort of “get-rich-quick” scheme and that couldn’t be further from the truth!
Through my income reports, I love showing the true side of blogging.
2. I want to help other bloggers
Although I don’t consider myself to be anywhere near an expert at blogging, I definitely have learned a few things in the last 17 months that’ll surely be helpful to those just starting out in blogging.
I begun writing income reports from the very first month I started making money to serve as somewhat of a roadmap for new bloggers.
You can check all of them out on my income report page!
A little about me and this blog:
If you’re no stranger to my income reports and you already know my story, you can definitely skip this part! Because the story hasn’t changed LOL.
However, if this is the first income report of mine that you’re reading, I think it’s very important that you know a little background history to my blogging journey.
November 2019 was my 17th month of making money from this blog, but I’ve actually had this blog since early 2016. If you do the math, that’s longer than 17 months!
I first started this blog while I was living alone in Japan and used it as a way for my family and friends to keep up with my adventures.
It was very much a personal blog with no promotion or strategy at all and I’m pretty sure my family and friends were the only people that ever read it LOL.
Around mid-2017, when I moved back home, this blog turned into a beauty blog, which is still what it is today.
Even though I was writing content more consistently and spent much more time on it, I still didn’t have a strategy or do anything to promote it. (Pretty sure my friends and family were still the only ones reading it at this point.)
It wasn’t until July 2018 that I finally decided to do some research and start taking blogging seriously. And yes, I made money from the very first month I started trying!
I already had a handful of posts that were good enough for me to promote right away, so this blog definitely didn’t start from nothing in July 2018.
November 2019 Income Report and Traffic
As I’ve done in my previous income reports, I will be reporting my income on an earned basis, even though this money hasn’t hit my bank account yet. The money I’ve earned in any given month corresponds to the traffic of said month, so I feel this is an intuitive way of reporting. This may change in the future, but I will always disclose my reporting method in every income report.
November 2019 Blog Gross Income: $2,104.02
- Mediavine – $1,709.58
- Rakuten (Ebates) – $175.00
- Amazon – $50.83
- Skimlinks – $7.65
- rewardStyle – $160.96
November 2019 Blog Expenses: $88.20
- DepositPhotos – $88.20
- Animoto Video Maker – $0 (yearly plan)
- Domain Registration – $0 (yearly plan)
- SiteGround Hosting – $0 (yearly plan)
- Tailwind – $0 (yearly plan)
November 2019 Blog Net Income: $2,015.82
*please note this does not include taxes that I will need to pay eventually!
November 2019 Traffic: 43,001 Sessions and 54,237 Page Views
Here are my stats from October for comparison:
November had 30 days in the month and October had 31 days, so let’s take a look at the averages per day:
- November: 1,433.37 sessions/day and 1,807.9 page views a day
- October: 1,779.13 sessions/day and 2,200.39 page views a day
I haven’t had traffic this low since February. It’s depressing especially since I feel like I’m still in the growth stage, but I’m going backwards!
This graph makes me so sad:
Ugh, that just looks awful. How in the world did my traffic get cut in half in a matter of a few months?
Income and Expenses
I grossed and amount of $2,104.02 in November and considering the very underwhelming amount of traffic I receive, I’m not mad at that amount at all!
That amount of money is probably more than anyone would expect to make with only around 50,000 page views, especially for a blog that relies on ad revenue for the majority of income.
However, my goal with this blog is to grow it to earn a full-time income, which would be around $4-5K/month. That income level is when I would definitely quit my full-time job to pursue blogging full-time.
At this point, I’m definitely satisfied with over $2K during a down month, though!
My ad revenue for the month was great and my affiliate income was higher than usual. I can thank the post I did on a recent sale for that!
As we’re in the thick of the holiday season, hopefully I’ll see more affiliate sales. I am in a very low-priced product niche, though, so making a substantial amount from affiliate sales is really tough.
Usually, I don’t have any expenses because I haven’t figured out how to effectively invest back into my blog yet, but I couldn’t pass up the DepositPhotos Black Friday deal.
In the grand scheme of things, it was a very small purchase for something I’ll be able to use for at least the next year.
So, I still ended the month with over $2K in net income, with an amount of $2,015.82! I’ll take it!
This graph isn’t quite as sad since income hasn’t taken as big of a hit as traffic has:
Ad Revenue and RPM
I mentioned in the section above that my ad revenue for November was great – $1,709.58 from just ads is definitely not shabby at all!
The only reason my ad revenue was so high for the amount of traffic I received is because the RPM in November increased!
RPM represents the amount of money earned per 1,000 sessions or 1,000 page views.
My ad management company, Mediavine, calculates RPM in both sessions and page views, but I’ve been using page view RPM in all of my income reports, so we’ll stick to that.
In November, my page view RPM was $31.52, up from $28.43 in October.
That $3 difference means I made an additional $3 for every 1,000 page views than I did in October. That’s $165 since I had about 55,000 page views!
I’ve been talking about my declining Pinterest referral traffic for months now and I hate to say it, but it got even worse in November.
Look at how sad this graph is:
And check out the stats: (including all the way from July so you can see how much it has REALLY declined)
- November: 35,334 page views
- October: 39,801 page views
- September: 47,433 page views
- August: 68,641 page views
- July: 98,003 page views
Average per day:
- November: 1,177.8 page views/day
- October: 1,283.9 page views/day
- September: 1,581.1 page views/day
- August: 2,214.23 page views/day
- July: 3,161.39 page views/day
In November, I got about A THIRD of the Pinterest traffic that I got in July. Absolutely depressing.
A part of me knows that during the holiday season, it’s normal to see a decrease in traffic as people are busier and don’t have as much time to spend online. OR during the time they are spending online, it’s holiday related – recipes, gift ideas, etc.
I do have some holiday posts, but just a few. And while they are doing fairly well right now, it’s not enough to make up for the loss in traffic my non-holiday posts are experiencing.
And then another part of me knows that Pinterest has made some massive changes recently and what I was doing before those changes is obviously not working now.
I’m sad to say that I have not figured out how to effectively use the “new” Pinterest yet, but I am looking forward to the update of Pinteresting Strategies, which will be released soon.
Carly, the author of that course, is a total Pinterest guru and I can’t wait to see what she has to say about the Pinterest update.
When I think back to the time I was experiencing the most growth, I was pushing out content like a mad woman.
In the recent months, with my new role at work, I’ve been much busier and haven’t had time to create as much content as I would like.
I tried my best to increase content creation during November and managed to publish six posts!
My goal is always 8 posts a month and while I didn’t reach that, at least I was closer than the month before! In October, I only published three posts…
Also, my long-term goal is to have 100 posts receive 1,000 page views every month. The closest I ever got to reaching this goal was in July when I had 26 posts receive over 1,000 page views.
In October, I had only 15 posts receive over 1,000 page views and in November, I had ONLY 13 posts reach the mark.
SUPER SAD TIMES.
I think it really does come down to publishing more content that people are interested in reading right now.
Many of my posts that were doing well earlier have become slightly outdated, so I intend to update those in 2020 and republish them with new dates.
Think about it – would you rather read a post titled “Best Drugstore Makeup Under $10” that was published in 2018 or one that was published in 2020? Probably the latter, right?
I know when I’m looking for product recommendations, the older the post is, the less likely I am to read it.
My Favorite Blogging Resources
Although I’m in a bit of a blogging slump right now, I have no doubt experienced great success considering the short amount of time I’ve been blogging.
The following resources are what helped me get to where I am today!
I mentioned this course in the Pinterest section of this post and it’s definitely the one Pinterest resource that I attribute my Pinterest success to.
It’s the first Pinterest course I ever took and I experienced a huge growth in Pinterest after taking this course. The author is a total Pinterest guru, so I’m really excited for the upcoming update of this course (to be released soon)!
Use code PINNING5 for $5 off
2. P.I.Q. Pinterest Strategy and PinTest Playbook E-Books
The two Pinterest e-books are the perfect supplement to the Pinteresting Strategies course for intermediate users looking to take their Pinterest game to the next level.
These e-books do not go over the basics of Pinterest like setting up your profile, so they aren’t really for beginners.
3. Easy On Page SEO and Easy Backlinks for SEO E-Books
Are you completely clueless about SEO? These e-books are a great place to start!
There are basically two parts to SEO – on page and off page, which is pretty much building backlinks. You’re covered with these two e-books.
Written by the same author as Pinteresting Strategies, this course will teach you everything you need to know about making sales through affiliate marketing!
There’s a whole lot more that goes into effective affiliate marketing than just adding links to your posts. This course teaches you all of those things.
I don’t make a whole lot from affiliate marketing, but for someone who promotes products that almost never cost over $50, I think I’m doing alright!
And there’s no doubt I’d be making a lot less if I didn’t take this course.
I absolutely cannot live without Tailwind. It saves me so much time and I rely on it to pin for me every single day! This is especially useful when I’m traveling and don’t have any time to be on Pinterest.
In October, I tried going back to pinning manually and that was pretty much a big fail. I just don’t have the time! I was back to using Tailwind for pin scheduling within one week LOL.
I’m going to Australia on Christmas day to visit my lovely boyfriend for almost three weeks yay!
So naturally, the blog will take a backseat during that time and the weeks leading up to my trip will be spent preparing for the trip (and also just preparing for the holidays in general).
See! Even I’m busier during the holiday season, so I can totally see how traffic declines during this time of the year.
Since I won’t be able to commit as much time to my blog in December, I can’t say that I have high goals for the month.
I HOPE I see an increase in traffic, but I wouldn’t be surprised if I don’t because you know – the holiday season.
However, I am optimistic that the traffic I do receive in December converts into more affiliate sales since people are more likely to buy things during this time of the year.
I hope to see another $2K month because ad revenue should be high again in December, and $3K would be even better!
Breaking $3K in a month would be a huge accomplishment and what better month to do it than the last month of the year?!
As for content creation, I’m shooting for 4 new posts in December. Two will be my monthly posts – monthly makeup favorites and my income report. And the second two will be related to year-end/New Year.
I expect the second two to be pretty massive posts that I NEED to get published before I leave for my trip, so I’m just going to focus on these posts for the month.
As we’re nearing the end of 2019, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed in where I am right now.
During the middle of the year (my best traffic months) I thought I totally figured this blogging thing out and I was on the right track to make the move to full-time blogging by the end of the year.
NOPE. It’s as if I spoke too soon so now I’m being punished.
I’m hopeful that I will end the year on an upswing, but no matter what, the start of 2020 will definitely be the time for me to re-evaluate where this blog is going.
I’m already working on a second blog with my boyfriend, and I have the desire to create another one on top of that.
To allocate my time between the blogs, I have to make a decision to either spend the effort creating more content and trying to build the traffic on this blog up again, or to kind of just let it go/maintain the level it’s at now and focus on the new blogs.
We shall see!
I’ll make that decision in January LOL. December will definitely be more of an unwind month for me as I feel physically and mentally drained between my day job and all the work that blogging requires.
I’m still determined to make blogging my full-time job, though, so I will definitely hit the ground running in 2020!
And with that my friends, I shall end this income report. I said I didn’t have a lot to say in this report, but here we are, over 3,000 words later LOL. This happens in each income report and I’m always amazed at myself.
If you’re reading this part of the income report right now, thank you for sticking with my until the end! Hopefully this post was even in the least bit helpful to you!
To my fellow bloggers, let me know how your November was below in the comments! I’d love to know!
Thanks for reading and until next time! <3
Previous Income Reports:
You can read all of my income reports on my blogging page.
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