I recently saw on my WordAds account that I had made my first ever money from blogging in October!! Totalling, wait for it… a very impressive $0.39. On a serious note, I was actually pretty stoked. I’m a beginner, a tiny fish in an ocean of massive blue whale blogs, and the fact that people even read what I put out there is amazing in itself… But seeing that I’ve earned even a tiny, tiny amount of money doing something I enjoy so much, made me feel pretty happy.
So I wanted to write this post, as someone who in the grand scheme of things, has just started out blogging. This is for any other relatively new blogs out there wondering how much time and effort it takes before you can see any income at all from your blog. In this post I’ll go through the stats for the month (October 2017) in which the WordAds earnings totalled $0.39, and also explain how long I’ve been blogging and how much I post etc.
History of my blog
I started blogging 18 months ago, before my trip of a lifetime around the world. It started out as a way to share my experiences with people back home and was more of a journal at the beginning, often with posts shared from remote places that I’d thrown together. In hindsight, I’m really pleased that I started, and continued, blogging throughout, but the early posts were just a straight forward account of what I did and saw, so not that useful to most.
I began to take blogging a bit more seriously over the last six months or so. By ‘more seriously’, I mean trying to create useful content for people and constantly trying to learn about blogging and improve my blog. In total on my blog I have published 64 posts, most of which are above 500 words, some of which are above 1000 words long, and I try to post 2-3 times a week which probably takes 3-5 hours of my time, so as you can see, it’s still very much a hobby I enjoy doing when I can but it does take work.
The Month’s Stats (October 2017)
I’ve been through my analytics on WordPress and put the stats below that earned me the $0.39. So things like: how much I posted, visitors, traffic sources, pageviews, etc etc.
– 564 views
– 256 visitors
– 217 likes
– 57 comments
– 10 blog posts (new published)
Sources of traffic
– WordPress reader – 270
– Search Engines – 17
– Facebook – 10
– Twitter – 2
So yes, I know these stats aren’t going to set the world on fire. But I’m actually really happy with how my blog is going, and I think it’s because I’m sticking at it and things are improving over time. The amount of engagement I’m getting and also views vs visitors is really great to see, as it means people (hopefully) like what I write and want to read more, or are returning to my blog.
As is probably the case with a lot of blogs starting out, the majority of my traffic is through the WordPress reader and fellow bloggers interacting with me in likes and comments etc. I’ve stopped sharing the vast majority of my posts to Facebook (I did share this one…) to try and not irritate all my friends and family, so it’s good to still get a small amount of traffic there. It really is so hard as a new website to get ranked on the search engines in the early stages, especially in a niche as flooded as mine (travel). So having the ability to build through the WordPress reader and engage and connect with other bloggers, commenting and exchanging guest posts etc is really great. The fact that any people are finding me through search engines is also really encouraging to see, as it means that some of my content is starting to appear there.
What does the future hold?
I really enjoy blogging and definitely want to keep doing so. I’m trying to work ways of posting more frequently into my routine and be more efficient with my time, but most of all I want to make sure I can keep posting regularly. I’d also like to at some point upgrade my blog to the business plan with WordPress, mainly for the analytics and apps it provides that would be really useful for me.
As a long term plan, once things are more established, it would be fun to give podcasting a try. I’ve just started one for my job and really enjoy listening to them and the process of making one too. Like everything though, it’s all about getting the time to do it, and making sure you stick at it for a decent amount of time, so these are long term options. If this post proves useful to fellow bloggers, then I’ll continue to update on my progress with making money blogging.
Summary – What it takes to make your first money blogging
The main learning from this is that making ANY money from blogging takes ALOT of time and hard work. You always hear about the people who have monetized their blogs and the end results, but never see the amount of work it took to get there. It can be really hard when you start a blog from scratch with grand plans and big expectations, but don’t see immediate results. You’ve really got to be passionate about what you’re writing about otherwise you’ll get bored and throw in the towel.
It shouldn’t be about money, it should be about doing something you enjoy and trying to use your knowledge and experience to help other people. If you’re not passionate about what you write about, this will come through in your blog. One of my favourite bloggers and podcasters Pat Flynn puts it this way, in that you should ‘serve first’, which means putting your audience first by providing useful and engaging content. If you do that, then the rest will follow.
So to finish, I know, it’s $0.39, that’s a tiny amount, I’m not going out and getting on the Cristal, and I hope this post hasn’t come across as smug or anything like that. I just wanted to share my experience with blogging and how much work it actually took for me to get to this point where there’s even a tiny amount of income. Because starting out I always wanted to know how long it ACTUALLY takes, and how much work you really have to put in to get results, but it’s hard to find that information. Most of all, I hope this post has been useful, as I’ve tried to be as transparent as possible with all of my stats etc. If anybody has any questions or wants to share their experience, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.
Thanks for taking an interest in my blog, it’s a pleasure to have you! If you’ve enjoyed my blog then you can also sign up for my monthly newsletter, or you can listen to my podcast all about blogging.