Hey peeps, hope everyone had an awesome holiday period and New Year!
This case study wraps up a year in the life of my case study site. It’s been a good year, and honestly, personally I chalk this case study up as a success.
I set out to prove to a lot of new bloggers that you can create a new site, and without any backlinks or expenses, you can build a passive income asset within a shortish timeframe.
Sure, I’m not getting rich over here. But, for those looking for a low risk, low investment option, I really hope my explaining my methods helps you achieve something similar – or better.
To prove a point, I didn’t post anything in December. I didn’t touch the site, I haven’t even updated the plugins, done the latest WP update, nothing.
With no time spent; the site made $1,263.37 in December, and traffic even went up a little. Here’s all the screenshots and stats in more detail:
First of all, if you’re landing here and wondering how I built this site to this point; you can find previous updates here:
Traffic and Earnings Stats for Jan-Dec 2020
|Month||# of articles||Pageviews||Ezoic earnings ($)||AdSense earnings ($)||Affiliate earnings ($)||Total ($)|
Ezoic Earnings for December
I’m a big fan of Ezoic. I know they have their haters, but they keep paying me $1k+ a month for doing very little. This is where most of my income is coming from, this month I made $1,044.26 with Ezoic.
If you’re not yet using Ezoic you should sign up and at least give them a try. I’d appreciate it if you used my affiliate link here – let me know if you do and I’ll be happy to help in any way I can.
Amazon Earnings for December
It’s not a niche that has any festive appeal at all, so I didn’t expect to see an increase in Amazon sales in December. $24.06 for the month is very similar to last month’s $21.60.
Third-Party Affiliate Earnings for December
This was a nice surprise, after 3 months with not a single sale, I had 4 sales towards the end of the month totaling $50.71.
The reporting is bugged out and isn’t showing the clicks in the above screenshot, but the sales have gone through OK.
Traffic Stats for December
I was expecting traffic to continue to trend down as this niche trends down over the winter months. So, it was a nice surprise to see pageviews go up a little.
Looking through the analytics I can see some of the evergreen posts I wrote are now getting more clicks than the popular summer posts. A deliberate effort to ride out the seasonal drop, and it’s paying off.
How Profitable Was the Site Over the Entire Year?
I see a lot of income reports where costs are completely ignored. What really matters is how much a site actually makes in profit, right?
Not necessarily to-date, I understand websites are long-term assets. But, if you’re building a site, it still makes sense to make sure you’re going to achieve a positive return on your investment – whether that’s time or money.
The best part of this site is that I kept costs to a minimum by writing all the content myself.
Here’s how an operating profit and loss plus a valuation looks for the site to-date:
|Total Earnings to Date||8,625.40|
|Domain Purchase (1 yr)||(11.00)|
|Hositng (1 yr)||(50.00)|
|Ezoic Premium (9 mths)||(324.69)|
|Site Value (35 multiple)||44,218.06|
|Potential Profit inc. Valuation||52,457.77|
I didn’t track how many hours I spent working on the site, but I’d say there is no way it was more than 800 hours. So, using that 800 hours as a ballpark figure, the ROI on my time spent is:
$52,457.77 / 800 = $65.57 per hour.
Obviously, I’m using some approx numbers here, but I think it gives me a clear indication of how much my time is was worth working on the site.
First of all, I think I will switch to quarterly updates now. The honeymoon phase is over and there isn’t as much to report each month. I still intend to carry on doing exactly what I’ve done to this point though, just targeting low competition keywords that I think I can rank for.
I’m not far from Mediavine’s requirements, so I really should do a content push and see if I can get accepted onto Mediavine. Maybe I will be able to report in March that has happened. 🙂
As always, happy to answer any questions and help anyone out any way I can.