Category Archives: Research

January Income Report – Changing For 2010

I want to preface this report by saying that, for now, it’s going to be my last report. I have to admit that the numbers are disappointing to me these days, and they don’t seem worth reporting until they start getting much better. So, after this report, you won’t see this type of thing again until I have my first $500 month. And since I don’t see anything to indicate that could be coming up any time soon, it could be awhile before we get another one of these.

So, without further ado, here’s how things looked this month:

Adsense – $64.75
Infolinks – $22.50
Commission Junction – $20.50
Google Affiliate Network – $.90
Grand Total – $108.65

Once again, most of my money was earned via my medical billing site, but the money has gone down, somewhat being replaced by Infolinks. The CJ sale was another one time fluke, and the GAN sale was someone buying a DVD from Barnes & Noble through one of my links, that’s a pretty low percentage, isn’t it?

Here’s the thing. I’ve been giving more and more thought to income lately. Though I’ve said I don’t expect to make a lot of income from this blog because of its nature, it wouldn’t depress me to make something more than once a millenia. The same goes for my other sites as well. The basic ideas are twofold; one, you work on selling your own product, where you get to retain all proceeds from the sale, or two, you work on selling the products of others and accept your percentage from that.

Those are really the only two ways of making any real money online, though some folks will make big money off Adsense by having multiple websites. Frankly, I don’t see myself as a guy who will ever own more than 10 to 15 websites, period, and that could be pushing it. Hundreds of websites; no way! So, since I don’t see myself as a web mogul in that fashion, trying to earn more money through Adsense seems to be illogical. I’ll be happy with what I’m getting now and try to move onto other things.

For instance, the CJ products. That money above was for one lousy sale; if I could get more of those, life wouldn’t be all that depressing. Some of my advertisers market some fairly technical and pricey stuff. For instance, imaging the commission I would earn if someone decided to buy this HJ Namdar Diamond Ring; I’d be living large for a month. I’d be a happy camper if someone decided to purchase one of these World Imports chandeliers also; stunning stuff.

But to get people to buy things like that, I really have to push the sale, market it well, and say some pretty good stuff about it. I’d also have to know it, and truthfully, I only know what I like to look at when it comes to jewelry, and my tastes in chandeliers only goes so far since many times I don’t even notice them (though I’d notice that one for sure). At least I’d feel like I’d have to know them if I were going to talk about them on a blog; if I set up product pages, I might not have to know as much.

Kind of like my sales page over there; I don’t have tons of products on it, as most of the deals are via banner links, but I easily could select products to push and, if there’s a code, indicate that there’s a timed sale of some sort. By the way, I’ve never gotten any feedback really on what people think of that type of sales page, the one next to me holding the parrot, which is always changing because the sales end and new sales come up. What do you think of something like that in general?

Anyway, onward and upward, as the saying goes. Let’s see what the financial future holds in store for me.

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Post #601 – Time For More Changes

Wow, 600 posts, and I’m still going relatively strong. I didn’t quite hit the date I had expected to hit when I wrote post #501, but I’m close to that date, and I feel good about where I am, so it’s all good.

IMG_20140508_204242
Look tired don’t I?

When I wrote post #500, I said I was going to start being a bit more personal on this blog, and it seems that I have been. It’s translated to more visitors, which makes me feel like it was the right way to go. Here were my top 5 topics for the last 100 articles:

Blogging – 30

Personal – 10

Product – 8

Entertainment – 7

Research – 6

It’s the first time entertainment has shown up on my top lists, but I enjoy those posts, though they take the longest to do, what with my looking for videos and products to shill. It does seem to be true, however, that list posts get a lot of attention, even if not always a lot of commentary. This leads to the topic of my most popular posts during the time period, and once again, most of the most popular were posts written beforehand. As a matter of fact, one that’s popped out of nowhere was written in April 2008! Here they are, and, for a change, when they were written:

Getting Google Desktop To Index Thunderbird 406 visits, 12/2008

Top 100 Singers Of All Time 272 visits, 01/2009

WordPress 2.9 Upgrade; My Issues 120 visits, new!

Watch Out For Secret Shopper Scams 119 visits, 4/2008

Isn’t that incredible? I wonder what’s going on that so many people still need help with that older stuff. Next, my most commented on articles during the last 100 posts:

My Top 10 Favorite TV Shows – 41

Trying To Understand Squeeze Pages – 40

Beyond Blogging – 36

It Pays To Be Bad Sometimes – 32

Limit Login Attempts – 31

Those are the stats I wanted to share with you. I could look at plenty more, but I want to go in a different direction, to let you know what’s coming.

I don’t make money off this blog; that doesn’t mean I can’t. However, what’s a bit more important is streamlining a few things and promoting some other things better. So, here’s what’s coming, if I haven’t already made the changes when you read this.

A lot of the banner ads are going away. I’m probably keeping the one at the top and maybe one on the side, but that’s it. My hope is that some of my remaining real estate will look like a prime place for advertisers at some point, but initially it’s going to clean up the page a little bit. The books are going to remain, but I might repackage how they look on the site, if it fits.

I’m going to add an area where all the products or things I positively review will be listed, with a link to that review. I think those things deserve to be sitting out here more prominently, especially a product like Mailwasher. Usually when we write about these things they only remain prominent for a short period of time, then get lost in the abyss of newer posts. That seems like a smart business move.

I’m also probably going to add back Google Adsense to this blog, which I removed a long time ago. I’ll probably go with a smaller ad than that long one I’ve had before, just to have something here. If people are looking for topics I hadn’t thought about before on this blog, maybe they’ll be the ones who’ll find what they’re looking for on Adsense, right?

And some of the “trinkets” things to the right I’m probably going to remove as well. Not all of them, but some, like the one presently saying my blog is ranked #254 on Winning the Web, will be gone, mainly because if you click on it and go to their site, it pops up this book thing that sometimes won’t go away even when you hit close, and if it’s irritating me then it will probably be irritating others as well.

I appreciate every one of you for checking in with me from time to time, and I hope to find even more things that add value to your online or offline experiences. Most of all, I want to be at least someone entertaining; nothing worse than a lot of boring stuff. Now, it’s still my blog, which means I’ll put on here whatever I want to put on here, but it doesn’t mean I might not entertain thoughts here and there; just be ready for me to debate you on them. 🙂

Onward and upward, as we head towards #700.
 

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December Income Report – Something To Build On For 2010

At least I can say that December was better than November. Actually, my December income was higher than October also, so maybe I should just shut up. But I really have to drastically increase these numbers in 2010, and I need to get it done quickly, though not necessarily through this blog. But this blog should be generating something, I figure, so some changes will be made.

First, the income numbers:

Adsense – $60.04
Commission Junction – $5.17
Infolinks – $14.84
Firetrust – $14.97
Voxant – $.01
Grand Total – $95.03

So, I made just under $100, which means I was under average for the year. This doesn’t bode well for my 2010 goals, but so be it; we all have to start somewhere, right?

First, you’re probably wondering where the income is from the book I helped promote, Beyond Blogging. I got one person who signed up under me as an affiliate, but that’s as far as it went. I don’t even know if anyone clicked on any of the links, to tell you the truth. All I know is that I didn’t make any sales, though I said I’d consider my part as being successful if there were even 3 sales. No problem; I’m still going to list the book over there on the side for awhile.

Second, I think it’s time for some physical changes to this blog on how I’m advertising things. I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do, but I do know that some of the affiliate ads you see now will be removed. There will still be a product or link of some kind at the end of each post, with more products than in the past, and more links to products within a post if something fits. Unfortunately, products don’t always have anything to do with the post, and I’m not going to try to be conscious enough to do that because, well, that just ain’t me. I also want to concentrate on finding more ways of driving traffic to my products, which you see here, but I know that I’m going to have to change up those sales pages to draw more visitors from search engines as well.

Third, I know I’m going to do something with both my Reviews of Everything and Services & Stuff sites, where I’m going to create more sales pages within both of those. My Reviews site will have reviews of some of the affiliate programs I have, since I know something about many of them, and when I review a product, I’m going to make sure to only advertise that product on a page. That will make a lot more sense than what I’ve previously done.

Fourth, my medical billing site is still my biggest Adsense producer, while my anti-smoking site has generated almost nothing, but my medical billing site used to generate way more money than it is now. I’m not sure if Infolinks has taken away from that, but one would hope that the two together would at least equal what I was making before.

No matter. I have big financial goals for my online activities this year, and I figure that my January report has to show at least an increase of 50% over this month to even make me think I have a chance on increasing finances. What you can still believe in, though, is that I still won’t be writing any paid posts, that I won’t be recommending anything I haven’t checked out first, and that I’ll be telling y’all what the heck I’m doing while trying to move forward.

And with that, onward and upward!

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My Online Goals For 2010, And A Look Back At 2009

It’s been a year since I wrote about my online goals for 2009. Let’s take a look at those goals and see what happened.

1. Earn at least $2,500 online. Nope, I didn’t make it, but I did make a little bit more than half, coming in at $1,384.65. I had 7 months over $100, including one month where I was over $225. I think I’ll need another year to see if history has anything to do with sales, as the last two months and the first two months of this year period were the worst for me.

2. Revamp my Services and Stuff site. I looked at it all year and in the end, just didn’t have my heart into changing it around. I did make some minor updates here and there, but nothing dramatic in any way.

3. Work my way up to 500 subscribers to my blog. In January I had 54 subscribers. My best day for subscribers was one day this month where the number showed I was up to 126 subscribers. That’s more than double of what I had, but far shorter than where I was. Oddly enough, things jumped drastically when I said I was going to start writing more personal posts than technical posts; I’ll take that to mean that folks were actually more engaged than they had been before, and I thank those of you who have subscribed to this blog.

4. Determine at least three series to write on this year. I ended up the year with only one new series, but I’m thinking about creating another one because I’ve talked about it enough, such that it’s probably going to be an upcoming post. The series I created was SEO, and the topic that might turn into one is Twitter. Twitter doesn’t quite fit as a series, yet I think by now I’ve written about it in some fashion at least 20 times.

5. Get into Technorati’s top 60,000. This one I didn’t even have a chance to do because at some point this year Technorati totally changed how the numbers worked and looked.

That was a look at where my mind was last year at this time and what I had hoped to accomplish. My mind is in a much different place this year, and yet there are still some major goals I want to reach. I have been reading many other blogs lately that have talked about their 2010 goals, as well as how they did last year. I’m on the failed end, as I didn’t achieve a single one of my goals. And with what I’m about to put up, I’m not sure I’ll hit any of these goals, as they’re going to be somewhat audacious. Sometimes, it’s not hitting the goal that’s as important as the process for improvement. Let’s take a look at my five goals for 2010.

1. Earn at least $15,000 online. Yeah, I know, I didn’t even hit $2,500 last year, so what makes me think I can do even better this year? One has to have a goal, and one has to make plans towards that goal. I’m going to be changing some things up on this blog, and probably my other blogs. I know of some changes I’m going to make on at least one of my sites. In essence, I figure it’s time to set myself up for the possibility of making more money. I need to start putting together more of these things that I’ve learned rather than waiting around for the big epiphany to hit me. I’m not about to change up the frequency of my blogging, but I hope to make some of it better.

2. Reach those 500 subscribers. I had a nice increase this year, but it wasn’t my goal. When I wrote about that fine line between blogging success and failure I recognized that making small changes can sometimes have drastic results. This will be year three of having this blog, and I’ve got a lot of content that I might think is pretty good, but it’s not reaching as much audience as I feel it needs to reach. The same goes for my other blogs and websites, but I’m concentrating on this one for new subscribers.

3. Increase real visitors to this site to 3,000 a month on average. Yeah, that “real” word is there for a reason. If I believed the numbers that my host is telling me, I’m getting more than 25,000 hits a month on this blog. Well, hits aren’t actual visitors, and we all know that. My real visitors has come back up from the hit it took after I left town last year for a consulting assignment, and I need it to keep increasing. I’ve noticed, as many others have noticed, that when I write more, I get more visitors. However, now that I’m making a part of my living doing writing, I’m not sure I can get to a point where I can write two posts a day for this blog. In this past year I only had one month where I wrote fewer than 20 posts for the month, but I didn’t hit 30 once either. I’m going to be doing more of that, and if one of those two posts a day is a sales post of some type, well, that counts as well. I’ve noticed that there are some internet marketers who make sure they mention things more than once that they’re marketing in their blogs; heck, you see how this campaign for the Beyond Blogging book has gone. If I made even 3 sales I’m going to consider that a success for me; if I make more than 5, I’m going to consider it a lesson learned.

4. Get even more publicity this year by guest posting. In 2009, I did a lot of interviews and ended up in both print and online radio. What I haven’t figured out is how to turn any of that into major benefits for myself. The one thing I didn’t do in 2009 was any guest posts; I did my guest posts in 2008. I wasn’t asked, but I also didn’t put myself out there in saying that I would write any guest posts. I’m doing that now; anyone who wants guest posts, write me at the email address on my About page and let me know what you’d like me to write about. Heck, for that matter, if you’d like to write a guest post for my blog on any appropriate topic, let me know that as well.

5. Get my Alexa rank for two of my blogs into the top 100,000. This one is going to be harder than I think it is, but it’s got to get done. This blog is right now sitting at 142,467, which isn’t all that bad, but back in March it was 127,242. My Top Finance Blog was only created last December, and it’s got an Alexa rank of 361,787. My business blog is tied into my entire business website, and I’m not sure if the blog can help the entire website move any higher, but if it can, it’s sitting at 382, 865 as of today. With the two blogs, getting ranked into the top 100,000 means asking for advertising is a legitimate prospect, even though this blog has a 0 page rank because of previously having those nofollow Text Link Ads. I’ve asked Google to evaluate me, but I guess they have better things on their mind so I’m not pushing the issue.

Anyway, those are my 2010 online goals. What do you think, and what are you hoping to achieve in 2010? By the way, if you’d like some help in setting goals, download this free gift from Paul Myers on goals.

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November Income Report – Going Backwards

When I posted my October income report, I really thought that was about as far back as I could possibly go. Well, I was wrong. This month’s income is even worse, and I have to admit that I don’t have high hopes for December at this juncture.

First, the numbers; short indeed:

Adsense – $50.62
Google Affiliate Network – $3.07
Infolinks – $7.90

If there’s any bonus for the month, it’s the strong jump in income from Infolinks. What I decided to do early in November is add it to my Medical Billing Answers site on a trial basis. Seems it’s working, and I’m going to leave it there for now. I also decided to add it to my Smoke Not So Much site as well, but that site generated almost nothing. However, that site did generate its first Adsense money in November, so maybe it’s close to being ready to start generating something positive.

I guess the good news is that I’ll be getting an Adsense check at the end of the month; who-hoo! I probably need to figure out a better way to drive people to my sales page, which is highlighted by me holding that parrot on the right, as well as figure out how to drive more people to my other sales pages, if I’m going to continue doing this stuff. At least this blog sent 6 people there in November, Commission Junction should be bringing in nice money; I know I’m doing it all wrong, though.

And that’s that; let’s see what the final month of our first decade in the 21st century has in store for me.

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