Blog Income Report for July 2020: How I Earned $47,772.75 Blogging (Last Month)

July was another record month in blog income for this year so far. Income came in at $47,772.75 and I brought in 374,561 readers—with a very healthy 468,164 unique sessions.

Now, digging into the numbers for July… blog income made another sizable leap over the previous month, again landing pretty far above my forecast range thanks to increased affiliate commissions from my guide about how to start a blog, and another month of dramatically increased enrollments in my comprehensive blogging course, Built to Blog: How to Get Your First 10,000 Readers and Earn Six-Figures Blogging (enrollments are still open if you want to join us).

Overall, I generated $47,772.75 in blog income during July of 2020.

I kept my business expenses pretty low again, continuing to give my freelance writers as much work as they want to take on, so that my content pipeline remains fully stocked for the next several months. Profit for July came in at $43,588.00.

The Forecast ☀️For August, I’m expecting blog income to drop a little bit from this month’s high, landing in the range of $36,000 – $40,000. Income is likely to remain in this general range over the coming months as I continue benefiting from traffic gains, spend more time beefing up my existing content and figuring out ways to promote new win-win affiliate programs throughout my content. My business-related expenses are going to remain relatively steady (possibly lower) as I dedicate more of my resources and time to supporting important causes and organizations that I care deeply about.

Now, on to the details of my July blog income report…

Blog Income in July 2020: $47,772.75

In these monthly reports, I track my total income every month, including each individual source of that income, and associated expenses with running my business. This is the good and the bad.

Next, I break down the traffic to my blog which heavily impacts my income, including what’s performing best and how I’m working to drive in more readers. I also cover how many email subscribers I’m at, the number of new subscribers acquired during the month, and what that growth trajectory looks like.

Finally, I cover updates on any other side projects I’m working on for the month.


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Now, let’s do this.

Blog Income Breakdown for July 2020

Gross Income

$47,772.75

Built to Blog Course Sales

    $4,174.84

Freelance Clients & Sponsorships

    $0.00

Affiliate Earnings

Bluehost
Elementor
Kinsta
Dreamhost
HostGator
Liquid Web
Namecheap
HubSpot
CreativeLive
Amazon (Business Books)
Udemy
Flexjobs
Shopify
SolidGigs
Survey Junkie
ConvertKit
Skillshare
Teachable
Adobe
Bonsai
Stencil
Contena
Food Blogger Pro
OptimizePress
Visme
Wix
WP Rocket
Weebly
Hunter
Automattic (WordPress)
Consumers Advocate
A2 Hosting
SiteGround
Novashare

$43,597.91

$27,375.00
$0.00
$59.39
$10,050.00
$700.00
$500.00
$71.23
$0.00
$76.73
$168.49
$286.65
$1,645.54
$241.00
$649.25
$547.50
$78.22
$80.00
$0.00
$0.00
$316.30
$44.22
$0.00
$14.00
$0.00
$0.00
$0.00
$0.00
$5.63
$48.72
$635.98
$0.00
$0.00
$0.00
$4.06

 

Expenses Breakdown

Total Expenses

$4,184.75

Web Services: Hosting and Storage

Kinsta
SmartWP Hosting
RightBlogger Hosting
Dreamhost
Google Drive
GoDaddy (New Domain)
Cloudflare

$675.40

$300.00
$25.00
$25.00
$26.94
$9.99
$18.17
$270.30

Online Tools & Subscriptions

ConvertKit (Pre-Paid Annual)
Teachable
Bluehost (Test Website)
Adobe Creative Cloud
Calendly
Quickbooks
Zoom.us (Video Conferencing)
DeBounce (Email Verification)
Simplecast (Podcast Hosting)
Apple (Storage & Apps)

$267.91

$0.00
$99.00
$0.00
$52.99
$10.00
$30.00
$14.99
$0.00
$15.00
$45.93

Professional Services

Freelance Writers
Technical Consultant
WordPress Development
Rev (YouTube Transcriptions)
Business Insurance

$2,386.05

$1,140.00
$1,000.00
$150.00
$8.80
$87.25

Travel, Office Supplies & Misc

AT&T Service Plan (iPhone)
Internet (Comcast)
Amazon (Office Supplies)
Health Insurance
Transaction and Processing Fees

$855.39

$116.08
$89.90
$63.99
$400.42
$185.00

 

Net Profit Breakdown

Net Profit

$43,588.00


Now, on to my blog and email-related statistics for July.


2. Blog Stats for July 2020: 468,164 Sessions and 148,497 Total Email Subscribers

Blog Income Report July 2020 Google Analytics Screenshot of Traffic (ryrob)

July saw a slight dip in traffic from June, marked by another month with lots of volatility in search ranking positions. Many of my key organic search rankings jumped up again in the first half of the month (largely due to Google algorithm updates) and then settled back down from their high points as the month continued. I’ve come to expect this kind of volatility, and it’s really the norm in today’s digital environment… so diversification of both traffic sources and content topics are essential.

For the entirety of this year now though, a very positive signal I’m continuing to see is that almost all of my long-form, blogging-related content I’ve published over the course of the past couple of years are still continuing to climb higher up the first page of search results for their target keyword phrases (suggesting there’s a lot of strong potential for growth throughout the rest of the year). I’ll be the first to tell you this is a very long game… and I’m investing more than ever into a strategic content roadmap that should lead to stronger future performance around more profitable content (with less dependance on traffic to a small number of articles).

I was down 5.99% in Sessions from June as traffic dipped marginally. Pageviews also fell slightly by 4.87% as well.

While maintaining numbers I’m pretty pleased with again in July, my blog is up 2.34% in traffic year-over-year compared to July of 2019, which was a solid traffic month then too. My most read articles continue to deliver healthy traffic from organic search—and my some of my best, newest content pieces (all less than 1 year old) are consistently climbing in organic search rankings as well, which has brought me back up to near all-time highs. I’m in a positive position considering my key priorities and focus on increased revenue from existing traffic.

Here are my top 15 most trafficked posts from July, ranked in descending order of which drove the most readers:

Overall, July saw traffic levels settle at a pretty good place considering the frequent search algorithm updates. Readers to my 25,000+ word guide, How to Start a Blog and Make Money actually increased a good deal again—which still holds rankings in organic search for competitive terms like how to start a bloghow to blog and such. As usual, when more readers land on that guide… more are joining my free course, How to Build a Blog in 7 Days and they’re offered an opportunity to join my more comprehensive paid Built to Blog course that’ll help level up their blogging skills even more.

Also in July, I published three new long-form articles for my growing audience of bloggers (and did one major overhaul to an existing guide):

The majority of my time spent on content is still going toward updating and expanding my biggest, most important guides on an ongoing basis—but I’m keeping up a steady rhythm of working on new long-form content, with the goal of still releasing at least a few new articles every month. My plan is to keep publishing more in-depth, highly actionable content for bloggers this month, and moving forward into the future.

This is all with the continued long-term goal of signaling to Google that my site is primarily about blogging and I’m expecting that to keep delivering more readers looking for tactical blogging advice over the long haul… and I have to remind myself that this is a long-term investment 💪

2. Email Subscribers.

ConvertKit Email Subscriber Sign Ups July 2020 Blog Income Report (ryrob) Screenshot

I’ve used ConvertKit to manage my email subscriber community and deliver my emails for several years now and I absolutely love the product.

July saw the addition of 4,107 subscribers to my community with my total email list growing to 148,497 subscribers.

This was a very slight dip in subscriber growth compared to June, but I saw a few key articles still getting more traffic than than they’d received at the beginning of the year (due to the many Google algorithm updates, which send me fluctuations in organic traffic), so new subscriber growth remains pretty steady, all things considered.

As with previous months, most of my new subscribers came from the influx of blogging-related content and free downloads I have across my site (like my blog business plan, blogging books, outreach email templates and blog post templates)—which is my ultimate goal to keep focused on, as that’s the niche I’ve doubled down on serving and want to keep providing valuable free tools & resources to my audience.

Much of my new subscriber growth continues to be fueled by my free course, Build a Blog in 7 Days which is well-optimized for both affiliate revenue—and for offering my more advanced paid course (Built to Blog).

That’s it for my July blog income report.

I’m still on a break from recording new podcast episodes as my attention remains solely on producing more long-form written content (along with constantly updating my existing content library) and slowly toward creating more videos for my YouTube channel. Once the time is right though, my goal is to bring the podcast back with a new focus around providing the most actionable blogging advice out there—but it’s looking less and less likely that it’ll happen in 2020.

As we touched on at the beginning of this report, I’m predicting blog income to drop a bit in August, landing between $36,000 – $40,000 as I see some fluctuations in affiliate payouts with the ups & downs in traffic I’ve seen throughout this summer. My main focus still remains on publishing more in-depth blogging content that’ll pay off over the course of the coming months (and years).

If you’re looking for some additional reading to help grow your own blog, I’m always updating my ultimate guide to building and scaling a profitable blog right here that I’d love for you to read 😊

Hi I'm Ryan Robinson

Full-time blogger, podcaster and side project aficionado. Join me here, on ryrob.com to learn how to start a blog, make money blogging and grow a profitable side business. I also write for publications like Fast Company, Forbes, Entrepreneur, Inc, Business Insider and more. Let’s chat on Twitter about business and side projects.

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30 replies to “Blog Income Report for July 2020: How I Earned $47,772.75 Blogging (Last Month)”

  1. The more I research the more clear it becomes that affiliate marketing is the way to go 😉

    Reply
  2. Hi Ryan,

    I’m happy to see and learn from your income report, wow. I’m working to one day do the same.

    Reply
  3. These reports always blow my mind. There is so much potential for growth. It’s not lost on me that your profits are from dedication and hard work, but it’s also easy to get lost looking at someone else’s results. I finally just figured out my journey isn’t defined by other people’s success.

    Keep pushing out reports like these. I’m always interested in your predictions portion of these posts.

    Reply
    • Ah, thanks for the kind words, Geoffrey! 🙏

      Right you are though—lots of time and effort has gone into my blog over the course of many years in order to get here. We all have a unique path that takes us to where we want to go, I’m glad you’re embracing your own journey. Pumped to still be learning more about you and seeing the direction your blog is taking!

      Reply
  4. I just subscribed to your mailing list a couple days ago after stumbling onto your site (no idea how I never ended up here before) and I can already see I made a great decisions. Lots to learn from here, thank you.

    Reply
  5. This is near the end of the piece but I think it’s an important note: you say blogging is “the niche I’ve doubled down on serving and want to keep providing valuable free tools & resources to my audience.”

    I don’t think it’s a coincidence you’ve seen an increase in income with an even greater focus on helping people build profitable blogs. Great reminder to find that niche and then serve the people in it, rather than trying to be all the things to everyone at once.

    Thanks as always for putting these together, Ryan. And congrats on a killer month!

    Reply
    • Right? Thanks, Joey! I think my decision to go all in on just this one single niche has rewarded my blog immensely over the past year.

      What’s easy to miss though, is that I started going full force at publishing a high volume of long-form content in this niche about 1 year ago today… so it’s taken plenty of time to send this signal to the search engines (and I’m still working on it). Everything in blogging, as you know, takes time to pay off—but the rewards are well worth the time investment.

      Reply
  6. I’m sure you’ve discussed this before, but I don’t see ad income or any ads on your site. How and why did you make that decision?

    Reply
    • Great question, Kaylee! You just prompted me to add a longer-form article on this topic to my content calendar 😂

      For now though, the short version is that I actually used to have advertisements running on my blog (through the CarbonAds network, which I loved)… however I noticed a few things:

      1. The revenue on blog advertisements is extremely low compared to other sources. Even at 400,000-500,000 monthly readers, the most I was earning from my ad network was around $1,500/mo. That’s nothing to be disappointed at by any means, but as my overall blog revenue began to grow, I could recognize that the return on having ads placed throughout my blog content was MUCH lower than what I was earning compared to affiliate programs I recommend and the sale of my own digital products to name just two other channels. Some blog advertising networks like Mediavine and PropellerAds (more here: https://www.ryrob.com/make-money-blogging/) do offer much higher payouts than what I was seeing on CarbonAds, but they have more rules around how/where you have to place their ads… whereas with CarbonAds, I could determine which posts I’d allow ads on and exactly where those placements should be—so that I’m not annoying the hell out of readers, which brings me to my next point…

      2. I realized that personally, I absolutely hate websites that are littered with blog advertisements. So much so that I usually leave a site and try to go find my answers elsewhere if there are too many ads on the page (or if the site is taking a while to load because of how much advertising is loading in the background), which brings me to my final point…

      3. Every blog advertising network you join will function by injecting some code onto your blog (likely onto every page of your site). That naturally makes the pages of your blog load slower than they otherwise would. When I did a major blog redesign earlier this year, a big decision I made was to optimize everything for ultra fast loading speeds… I wanted there to be absolutely zero performance-related reasons why (1) readers should bounce away from my blog due to load times and (2) no reason why my content shouldn’t be served at the top of Google search results.

      All of these factors together made it a no-brainer for me to rebuild my blog around an ad-free experience that (1) didn’t translate into a huge loss of my blog’s overall revenue when compared to the full picture (2) led to a better reader experience when consuming my content and (3) had clear, measurable benefits in terms of speeding up how quickly my website loads.

      Reply
  7. Hi Ryan, I love your blog income report and I would love to follow in your footsteps.

    You are one of the reasons why I started an Amazon affiliate blog on technology, and your SEO strategies have helped me increase organic traffic to my best money keywords.

    I look forward to reading more of your awesome pieces of content.

    Thanks so much and I really appreciate what you are doing for readers like us.

    Reply
  8. Hey, I just came across your blog and its amazing. While reading your income report, I found you are not using Google Adsense. Can you tell me why? If you have used then how much you have generated from AdSense and is Adsense a good source of income?

    Reply
    • Hey Abhi! I just answered a version of this question in another comment reply below here 🙂

      The short answer though, is that earlier this year I redesigned my blog around an ad-free experience that (1) removed the ad network I was using (CarbonAds) and didn’t translate into a huge loss of my blog’s overall revenue when compared to the full picture (2) no ads led to a better reader experience when consuming my content and (3) this decision had clear, measurable benefits in terms of speeding up how quickly my website loads, since there was no longer any ad network code loading across the pages of my website.

      To make a meaningful amount of income with AdSense, you’ll need a lot of traffic to be hitting your blog—I talk quite a lot more about ad networks here in this post: https://www.ryrob.com/make-money-blogging/#blog-advertisements

      Reply
  9. Great job, Ryan.

    Thanks for sharing this kind of information! I’m also a blogger and still trying to learn more and earn more. Your article is inspiration for me to keep trying until I reach the goal.

    Reply
  10. It’s really impressive how you run your blog as a business.
    Having 40k USD net profit by the end of almost every month seems great, but do you have any future plans on how to grow your revenue or the blog even bigger?
    Thanks for answering.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the kind words (and for following along with all of my content) 🙂

      Yes, absolutely! I’m working on a revamp of my flagship blogging course and will be doing some major changes to that side of my business with the goal of growing my overall business revenue by 2x within the coming year (much higher production value with the upcoming course content, new modules, higher course price point, switching to an open/closed launch model, utilizing affiliates to spread the word further about the course). That’s one avenue I’m making progress on, and I also have a couple other sites I’m slowing growing traffic to—with the goal of diversifying my business. One of my other sites also has pretty strong potential for eventually offering some paid products too (WordPress themes, plugins, other digital tools for bloggers). Exciting times!

      Reply
  11. I have created my blog about 2 months ago and I did some posts until now. But I didn’t get any traffic on my blog. What should I do so that traffic on my blog increase.

    Reply
  12. I think affiliate marketing is the main source of your income. How much time you took to this profit? You are inspiration to me… Can i also start affiliate marketing?

    Reply
    • That’s correct! Most months, affiliate sales drive the majority of my revenue. It took several years to build up to the level I’m at today, but it’s certainly possible to carve out a specific niche and make it to $5,000-$10,000/mo in affiliate commissions in around a year or so after getting started. That’s by no means easy to do though, and requires a lot of work promoting your content aggressively 🙂

      Reply
  13. Love the amazing shared, I notice in terms of getting more email subscribers is quite difficult. Not sure if you’ve been implementing AMP for your site, when I didn’t use it the traffic drops by 50%. However, even thought I do use AMP the number email subscribers CR is the same around your sharing

    Reply