[Dumb] Passive Income Report for July 2014

Passive Income Report - July 2014Welcome to my [Dumb] Passive Income Report! This blog is all about what I am doing to create several different passive income streams. This monthly income report details my results. I work very hard and dedicate many hours each week to working on my different online endeavors in an attempt to create passive income. So why do I consider it passive income then? Because I am not trading specified amounts of time for a predetermined amount of money like I do at my day job. Most of the income you will see in this report results from work I have done in the past.

Why am I sharing my income publicly? Hopefully to gain credibility with you (the readers) and to maintain a certain degree of accountability for myself. I could blog all day long about what I am doing to create passive income online, including some of my unique strategies. But why would anybody trust me and believe that what I am doing works if I don’t prove it by sharing my results? This is what I mean by gaining credibility and this is one of the main purposes for sharing my income. I also share my failures on the blog, which holds me accountable. Knowing that I will be publishing a monthly income report will keep me motivated to keep pushing forward and plugging away on the things I need to do to create future passive income.

Happenings in July

Niche Site at Night – Public Case Study

In mid July, 2014 – I announced that I would be starting a public niche site case study. My plan was to jump right in and start it right away. But then I had an unexpected setback that was going to delay me by one week. Here it is, August 9th now, and I still haven’t started the case study. In my unexpected delay post – I hinted at what I would be doing and the tools I would be using to find a niche. I just haven’t gotten around to it yet. As it turns out – things rarely go as I plan them. Even without my usual nightly distractions, I find it difficult to work on my internet stuff at night. I work much better in the morning with my hot cups of coffee. Regardless, I still plan to continue with the Niche Site at Night project. Even if all of the work isn’t exactly done at night, I’m still going to call it Niche Site at Night. I think people will resonate with the fact that they could be using their spare time at night to build a passive income stream on the side with niche sites.

Niche Sites – Adsense

As mentioned last month, my traffic and earnings on my main Adsense site are down due to the seasonal nature of the niche. Google trends show that search volume is lowest for the particular niche in the summer months and I expect traffic and earnings to pick back up throughout September and beyond. The good news is, I finally finished up my massive resource on the site which includes a clickable map and a dedicated post for each and every one of the 50 states in the U.S. This brings the total number of published posts on the site up to 74. I can’t wait to see how the improved site with the additional content performs once search volume picks back up! Given the site brought in over $1300 in Adsense in April with only 24 published posts – I’m very eager to see how it does with all the additional content.

Niche Sites – Amazon

Amazon Earnings July 2014My first good Amazon site continues to climb in the rankings and traffic is continuously increasing. Last month I averaged around 200 visitors per day. Now I am consistently seeing 350 to 400 visitors per day. Most of my Amazon earnings came from this first “good” site in July – about $232! There is still room for improvement and rankings increases for several keywords in the niche – so I definitely have not topped out for earnings with this site. In fact, as of August 8th I’ve already sold 71 items! I’m on track to shatter last months numbers!

One thing this site has done for me is it’s proven to myself that my strategy for building, ranking and monetizing a site with Amazon actually works. I’ve already finished building a couple of more sites just like it (different niches with higher priced products). I’m slowly building links to each and watching them both climb up in the rankings (still building links to the first site too). Within just a few short months, I should have several Amazon sites ranking and earning really good money.

This confidence that I am experiencing due to even just a little bit of success is what led me to start up my Niche Site at Night public case study. This blog has always been about sharing what works and what doesn’t work for me. My Amazon sites are working and I can’t wait to share my entire process with you.

Website Services

When you look at my numbers below, you’ll see an extra $1,000 in income from a not so regular source. I’ve built a couple of websites for some small local businesses that are owned by some acquaintances of mine. These sites are pretty easy to build and I finally decided on a payment structure that I think is fair. I charge $500 to build the site initially and $50/month (or $500/year) to maintain the site. So – income from this venture isn’t totally passive, but the monthly (or yearly) maintenance fees at least make some of the income recurring.

I wish I could share the latest site with you – but since the client is a friend of mine I agreed to experiment with some SEO for his local business for free. I just wanted to see how easy I could rank for his local business search term. For this reason, I don’t want to share the URL and put his rankings at risk. Turns out, it is ridiculously easy to rank for this type of search term! With ONLY on-page SEO, (no links) I got him to position 15 in Google for a term that gets 260 searches per month. A term that will absolutely get him a bunch of business. I pointed just one PBN link to his homepage and it shot up to #10 in Google, before settling back down at #11. I’m currently working on pointing just a few more PBN links which should easily get it up to the very top of Google.

Although I don’t plan to actively promote this side of my business – it’s nice to know that I could pretty easily create some extra income if I went out and sold these types of services. Especially with my SEO knowledge and expertise – I could be charging a nice chunk of change for this. But instead I plan to continue focusing my efforts on building more passive income streams with niche websites.

Keyword Research Packages

My keyword research packages continue to sell out very quickly. I’m only able to get about 10 of these (or so) up for sale each month. You’ll almost never see any available when you look at my sales page. This is because there are nearly 200  people on my notify list (and growing every day). As soon as I list packages for sale, I email that list and somebody usually purchases the package within a few hours. If you want to get on that notify list, and also see the exact report that I send to buyers, simply click here and enter your email address-.

Reinvesting Profits

During the month of July, I decided to experiment with browsing the domain auctions over at GoDaddy to see if I could find a powerful domain to add to my PBN. It took some searching, but I ended up picking up a clean domain with PA 40 and DA 32 for only $80!

I’ve been meaning to invest in another Hoth package for quite awhile now. Towards the end of July, I logged into my account over there and almost pulled the trigger – but then remembered that I really wanted to keep my expenses down for July. I figured it could wait a few days. So – you won’t see the expense in this report, but I did buy a Hoth Platinum package in early August for $250 which will point a whole bunch of links towards one of my newer Amazon sites that is quickly climbing the rankings in Google. These links will nicely complement my SocialADR bookmarks and my PBN links and will also help to diversify my backlink profile even more.

Although this is only my second time using the Hoth to build links – I gotta say that I really love the service. The user interface and the entire experience is super easy to understand and navigate. The reports and access that you receive after your links are built go above and beyond. I will definitely be using them even more to build links to my niche sites in the future.

Income and Expenses – July 2014

Passive Income

Affiliate Income from Dumb Passive Income

Other Passive Income from Niche Sites, etc…

  • $426.18 – Google Adsense (ad click revenue from niche sites)
  • $18.81 – Yahoo! Voices for articles I wrote a long time ago
  • $232.25 – Amazon Associates for sales on Amazon.com (explained in detail here)

Non-Passive Income

Website Services by Matthew Allen

Sponsored Posts

  • $95 – Sold one sponsored post on an old inactive blog that I own (came as a total shock to me!)

Expenses

Hosting and Domains

Tools, Plugins and Themes

Outsourcing

  • $132 – to my private writer for article writing for niche sites
  • $186.48 – to oDesk for virtual assistant(s)
  • $296 – to a virtual contractor who is helping me create packages for my keyword research service
  • $0 – to The HOTH for a link building package (comprehensive and completely done-for-you link building)

Miscellaneous

  • $22.36 – Paypal fees
  • $5.00 – Google Apps for domain email
  • $23.75 – commission to broker for sponsored post deal
  • $9.99 – CreateAClickableMap.com – (free tool with payment option to be able to return and edit map)

Totals and Thoughts

Total income $2863.18 minus total expenses $1080.32 equals a net profit of $1782.86 for July 2014!

Income Expense July 2014

My $1000 payday from a client for my website services really saved my butt this month! Had it not been for that, I would have seen a significant decrease in total income. Instead, I ended up with another record month, breaking my old record by just $16! Thanks to keeping a close eye on my expenses in July and keeping them down, I was able to net a new record of over $1700. Awesome stuff man.

With my Amazon sites working, ranking and earning – I can hardly wait to get to the buying season this year in November and December. I don’t want to get too ambitious or overly excited, but I think I’m going to experience some ridiculous numbers by the end of this year that I never could have imagined even possible. Since I am an eternal optimist – I’m pretty much planning on it. 🙂

Thank You! Thank You for taking the time to read through my latest income report and Thank You for contributing  if you have previously purchased something through one of my affiliate links!  Many of the links within this income report are indeed affiliate links. I will receive a commission if you choose to purchase after clicking through via any of these links. Thank You if you do!

To your success and mine – may we all be profitable online. -Good Day!

Remember that there are several dumb ways to create passive income online, but only one site that is blogging about it! Dumb Passive Income… dot com.

-Matt

Photo Credits:

George Stopka via Flickr

19 thoughts on “[Dumb] Passive Income Report for July 2014”

  1. Hi Matt, Good to hear your breaking record. I like to work in the morning too. Sometime it’s really hard to try and continue work at night after long-day of 9-5 job. Well, I’m thinking about setup my service for client too. Since my expense is going high each month. I think I’ll do it soon. Have a nice day. 🙂

    • Cool Raweewan. Yeah, after building several niche sites and blogs over the years, it is quite simple to setup a simple website for a local business. Just need to make it look really nice and add some navigation menus that lead to different pages for potential customers/clients. Good luck with whatever type of service you are thinking of setting up.

  2. Thanks for the update Matt. I hope to achieve similar result soon. Meanwhile, I sent you a mail, I look forward to getting your response.

  3. Matt, very nice to see your update and your growth among your online business. It’s very inspiring to see your hard work paying off. Hope your Adsense hits another $1k level in Aug. I know those Education niche peak is in Aug. 🙂

    • Hey Kent – so far it’s not looking like August will be a $1k month. I’m still working on some stuff to increase traffic to the site though. For my specific niche, the peak months last year were January and May. September and October saw significant increases over August – so I’m staying patient and waiting for search traffic to return.

  4. Looks like a pretty awesome month then in terms of turnover. Is it my imagination though or are your expenses also going up?

  5. I like what I see and what I read. You’re an inspiration, Matt. My specialized
    area of interest is this .. I’m a retiree. Like the majority of seniors out
    there, on tight or not so tight budgets, the specter of “Running Out of Money
    Before Running Out of Life” is always lurking in the shadows.

    With a few well run niche sites like yours, a senior doesn’t have to live under that “fixed income” dark cloud.

    This can be done regardless of physical infirmities, and also regardless of location.

    One of my own key retirement strategies has been to relocate to the Philippines
    for cost of living, tax savings and other lifestyle enhancements … and honest
    guys who lead by example like you are my heroes. Keep on trucking.

    • Awesome comment Dave – I love it! Thank you.

      Ever since my early 20’s, I knew I wanted to create or buy some sort of recurring or passive income stream. Back then, creating websites wasn’t even close to an option for me. I thought owning rental properties was going to be my long term “passive income” plan. Now that I’m getting this internet marketing thing figured out – rental properties don’t interest me at all!

      Moving to the Philippines sounds like a sweet plan – as long as you don’t have anything holding you back. Just a couple of small niche sites will produce enough income for you to live quite a luxurious lifestyle over there. Good luck with everything. Would love to hear updates on how your plan is going.

  6. Hi Matt, this is my first time here and I take my hat off to you! You’re doing this step-by-step and working hard to grow your revenue streams – good for you.

    I’m wondering if http://www.contentimo.com could help you (a) reduce your writing services costs ($300) and also enable you to offer new services to small businesses ( like pushing relevant content into social media sites, like Facebook ). It’s a new content marketing engine that also delivers draft blog posts that you simply polish/edit and publish. No more getting stuck on what to write about.

    On another note – you should check-out http://www.snip.ly too – you can share other peoples content but add your own CTA on evey page you share. You can combine snip.ly feeds into contentimo too – for automated content sharing that essentially has your Ad on it – an inexpensive way to drive traffic to your affiliate sites.

    I wish you every success Matt.

    @robinyearsley

  7. That is a nice conversion rate there matt – congrats. What commission tier are you in for your amazon sales? I was able to hit the 6.5% tier last month (july) but it’s a pretty big hump to get over into the 7% tier.
    Also, nice job lowering the expenses. Nice to see the green line go up on your graph, while the red line drops sharply. Keep up the hard work.
    As for having difficulty working at night, what I do is try and go home, relax a bit and cook dinner and not do anything business related (back before I finished the series, I watched an episode or sometimes 2 of breaking bad) and once I did that and kind of disengaged for a bit, I can go back to side work with renewed focus and put in 3-5 hours per night.

    • 4.64% is good? I’d like to improve it actually. I know of at least one person who is getting close to 10% conversion rates from their Amazon click throughs. I would love to get mine up to 8 or 9%.

      I hit the 7% tier each of the last 2 months. Need only 111 sales to do that. I think it’s over 300 sales for the next tier which is 7.5%. Getting 7% every single month will be pretty easy now. Doing that with just my first site, which will boost commissions right off the bat for my sales from my sites with higher priced items.

      Thanks for the tip on trying to work at night Jeff. I tend to try to take my “relax and unwind” time right before I go to bed. Once I jump into something on the computer, I have no problem. It’s the getting started that I have trouble with at night. I procrastinate and do everything except what I know I should be doing.

  8. Nicely done Matt. You’ve really built a nice side income here and expanded into a lot of different streams between affiliate sales, services, and your own website properties. Congrats!

  9. Hey Matt,

    You mentioned that you added 50 new posts, one for each state. I just wanted to offer a word of advice regarding this. I did the same thing with one of my niche websites, and (I believe..) that it resulted in my website being penalized by Google for what they refer to as “Doorway Pages.”

    Here’s some examples that they listed:

    -Having multiple domain names targeted at specific regions or cities that funnel users to one page

    -Templated pages made solely for affiliate linking

    -Multiple pages on your site with similar content designed to rank for specific queries like city or state names

    Anyway, lesson learned on my part. I guess the moral of the story is make sure the pages are very high quality, and are not intended to funnel users to a single location.

    Here’s the actual link https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/2721311?hl=en

    Best of luck

    • Thanks Josh! I had never heard of this particular penalty until now. I think I’m good, thankfully. I actually spent a LOT of money and had some really good original content produced for each and every state. Completely unique with images and everything. They’ve all been live for a couple of months now and no penalties that I know of yet.

      I sure do appreciate you letting me know about this though. Thanks.

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