April 12

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How We Took the Month Off and Still Made Money Online

By TicoandTina

April 12, 2016

Blogging, passive income, working from home

A few months ago we couldn’t have afforded to take the month off, but last month it barely affected our passive income.

Check out our Make Money Online page for more details about how we got started and tools we use.

Making money online isn't as hard as you might think. Here's how one family took a month off and still covered their basic expenses through online income generation. | income report, blogging, working from home, blog income report

I don’t know if this will have a ripple effect on April, but we know it was best for our family to take a step back for March.

Here are March’s numbers:

income-report

In March, just over 74K people visited the site for approximately 133K pageviews.

Sadly, this is down again from February, but we did next to nothing for the site in March.

What’s still working… or not:

  • PubExchange is still sending us a little traffic, though it’s down a few pages from February, which may have to do with less posting. Even though it really isn’t even a drop in the bucket, I still don’t see any reason to quit using it.
  • I’m really happy with my decision to get PowerDirector 14 to improve my video editing experience! There are still a few kinks I’m working out, but it does so many things that I wanted to be able to do with [easyazon_link identifier=”B0093FROFM” locale=”US” tag=”tictin-20″]Adobe Premiere Elements[/easyazon_link] that I couldn’t. Don’t miss the opportunity to try it for free and get 55% off if you want to up your video game, too!

New stuff we tried in March:

1. Nada

Ok, here’s the deal.

  • We were still in Costa Rica when March began, coming off of David’s cousin’s wedding and still doing family stuff. That first weekend we flew through the US into Tijuana and lost all our bags, which delayed our schedule by a day or two.
  • We made the 3 day drive back to the Midwest in 2 days for my brother’s wedding.
  • David started a month long internship doing behind the scenes SEO/niche site stuff.
  • We had a bunch of family/friend things surrounding the wedding and the fact that we hadn’t seen anyone all winter.
  • We were all really hoping my other brother would have his baby while we were there, and thankfully he did! So we ended up staying another week to welcome and hang out with my sister-in-law’s sister’s family since them came to visit and help out.
  • During this time we were having to work on the internship stuff, as well as move around a few times because we had the water and stuff shut off at our home.
  • That takes us to the end of March, when we drove 2 days back down south to David’s parents’ in Texas for a day, and then on to Tijuana again to pick up our car.

Generally speaking, all of this can be considered an excuse because we technically could have planned ahead better to have some stuff scheduled or whatever, but honestly we just decided to take a step back from everything and try to enjoy the moments as much as we could.

There are just times when you have to evaluate what’s really most important to you, and for March that meant relationships. And a little bit trying to stay sane… that internship took a lot more than we really had time for with everything else going on.

The good news is that our bounce rate and pages/session continued to improve! We’re dealing with less traffic, but we’re doing a better job with what we have.

This graphic compares March’s improvements relating to February, which were already improved from January.

google-analytics-improvements

That means this resource has already totally paid off, and we’ve barely even scratched the surface of what we can do with the information it helps us understand.

Earnings Breakdown:

(As might be expected in a post about money online, some of these may be affiliate links, which means that at no cost to you, we earn a small percentage if you choose to purchase something. We don’t bother being affiliates of things we don’t like, that would just be lame.)

1. Sales – $0.00

Still not promoting any of our own products, though hopefully that will change soon!

2. Affiliate – $511.31

MyGreenFills actually surpassed Amazon for affiliate sales this month, and honestly I think it’s because they’re just such a great product!

I think I did move our little sidebar ad up a bit… but other than that we didn’t change or promote anything outside of what’s already been set up for a long time.

3. YouTube – $136.98

I didn’t see when exactly it happened, but we hit 4K subs and earnings held steady even though we actually only put up a couple vlog videos in March.

Telling Kids They’re Getting Shots continues to be our main earner because it continues to be suggested by YouTube – you never know when that will change, though!

How to Shop Like a Minimalist and How to Get Rid of Clothes were still the next best earners.

4. Sponsored Content – $0.oo

There seem to be fewer gigs in the first quarter because companies often save up more for the end of the year, but I also couldn’t qualify for as much since I was out of the country.

5. Blog Ads – $896.90

Down a bit since traffic was down, but still really not shabby.

Expenses – $191.00

  • Hosting was back to normal this month since we pay for the previous month’s traffic.
  • I started using ShareAsImage a while back because it made creating images for social really easy since you can work from your saved templates and then it adjusts nicely based on which size you need for which platform. I mostly just used it for quotes, so I was considering switching to a non-recurring cost tool, but I wasn’t on the ball enough and I got charged for another year. They actually just rebranded as Stencil, and have loads of improvements, so I’m happy to be able to play around with it some more.
  • We also purchased something called Instamate, which lets you easily find and post/schedule viral Instagram content (or your own, too, which is definitely worth being able to do). We already had Viral Autobots, which is another product from the same guy, that does the same thing for Facebook and have seen firsthand how well it works to increase engagement, so it just seemed to make sense. The problem I’ve run into with it is that it currently only seems to be able to post square images, which is so 6 months ago. We also don’t want to post other people’s stuff to our feed, for the most part, so this will probably mostly be used for other accounts potentially in the future.

What we did well:

  • Survived. Mostly.
  • Had an awesome time with family and friends.
  • Learned some great stuff about better SEO and niche site creation!

What we want to do better:

  • Now that our time isn’t tied up doing other people’s work, we’re really excited to make a lot of improvements here on the site! We plan to switch over to a customized  Thrive theme and hopefully make posts look a lot prettier!
  • With our improved SEO knowledge, optimize, optimize, optimize.
  • Add more targeted content.

Takeaways:

When you have things set up, you’re able to take a month off without hurting your income too much – thank God for that blessing!

Want to make money online, too?

If we can do it, so can you! Seriously.

TicoandTina

About the author

We believe that you were made for greatness and that you don't need to wait for "someday" to start living it. We want to help you revitalize your "now" while also planning for a better "later". What needs to be streamlined in your life to make room for greatness? We keep it real here because let’s face it, we’re not all models and life is not a movie where everything wraps up into neat little packages in 90 minutes. Plus, laughing is one of our favorite activities.

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