Let’s talk profit! This month I celebrated 5 years blogging (not consistently) and 1 year focused on actually making money. This is my monthly income report for April 2019 where I’m sharing my revenue, my expenses, and my total profit. I also share my business strategy and tips that helped me earn $5,660.05 blogging in one month while working a full time job.
I’m going for it – monthly traffic + income reports for Grass Fed Salsa! As a way to provide you with full transparency on what’s working and what isn’t for my business of running a website in the wellness industry, I’ll be sharing these monthly reports detailing exactly how I make my money each money.
At the time of writing this, I’m still working my full time job in the interior design industry, mothering a 16 month old, and wife-ing to a handsome husband, directing a team of kick ass beauty entrepreneurs with Beautycounter, all in addition to running my online business.
Maybe you’re just here for the wellness tips (maybe you’d be more interested reading 10 Simple Ways to Detox Your Body) or AIP/Whole30 recipes (this Mashed Cauliflower Breakfast Bowl is a fan fav!), but let me explain my intent for these income reports.
Why am I sharing income reports?
I decided to start sharing income reports to be transparent about my wellness business, hold myself accountable, and share ways for you to grow your own online wellness business. In these posts, I show you what worked and what didn’t work so you can apply those lessons to your own goals.
My hope is that these income reports inspire you to create and grow your own wellness biz. It is so possible and fulfilling – even with a full time job in another industry, a baby under 2, and a husband you love spending time with!
Let’s do this!
I want you to know, I don’t have any special advantages. Honestly, you and I probably have many more similarities than you’d assume.
I don’t have a trust fund, or a husband whose job can cover all the bills. In fact, I have a full time job, and a body that requires more sleep than the average person. I have a daughter who gets my full attention while we’re together. I’ve had to learn how to make my business work passively, and make the most out of the hours I do log.
Keep these things in mind as you’re reading this report. Even if you’re crunched for time, you can make it work, too.
The success I’ve had with my wellness website comes from having a dream, dedication, motivation, perseverance, intuition, and guidance. It takes sacrifice, but to be able to look proudly at what I’ve built makes it all so worth it.
Please note that any links below marked by an asterisk (*) are affiliate links and I may earn a commission if you click them and make a purchase. This is, of course, at no cost to you, and I only share products that I use and love myself.
- Digital Product Sales: $2,506.68
- Affiliate Income: $2,385.19
- Beautycounter*: $2,230.95
- Dry Farm Wines*: $25.44
- Amazon*: $39.88
- Perfect Supplements*: $93.33
- Butcher Box*: $25.00
- FullScript: $15.54
- Ad Revenue: $494.03
- Misc. $179.20
Total Income: $5,660.05
- PayPal + Stripe Fees: $174.88
- Independent Contractors: $490
- Kartra*: $160
- Gmail: $5.00
- Education (like Hashtag Jeff’s monthly SEO membership – SO WORTH IT): $53.80
- Libsyn Podcast Hosting: $5.00
- Zoom: $15.00
- Beautycounter*: $240.09
- SEMRush* (a big investment, but I seriously cannot have a website without it): $99
Total Expenses: $1,242.77
Net Profit: $4,417.28
First of all, it’s crazy to think back to my first 3.5 years in business and compare to today. Until 2018, my business was entirely self funded. I didn't ever make any money because I was obtaining info on how to make money from the wrong sources! I was investing in programs and training from people who made their money in other industries, which is why I'm focusing on educating how to make money specifically in the wellness industry.
Until early 2018, I would take my income each month and invest right back into my business – with 0 profit!
Once I started investing my money in the right coaches and programs, and started listening to my intuition and creating my own processes instead of following someone elses, my business started being profittable right away. And it grew really quickly!
I tell you this, because I don't want you to think it needs to take 4 years to start making money. You can do it right away! You just need the right information from the get-go so you can stop wasting time and money on things that don't work.
I’ll share more later in this post about how I started profiting in my business and tips for you to increase your profit as well.
Alright, enough talk. Let’s take a look at the specifics for April 2019.
Traffic Overview: 38,712 pageviews for the month (a 2.92% decrease from last month)
While it’s never a good thing to see traffic decrease in a month, I wasn’t too upset by this decrease. In March 2019, there was a major change to Google’s search and many other wellness websites were hit with a much greater decline in traffic for April.
This is why I’m so thankful I’m not dependent on ad revenue for my primary source of income, since there are so many factors regarding traffic that are out of my control. That being said, more eyes on your website means more income all around (not just ad revenue – see RPM metric below), so I do plan to focus more on growing traffic to my site starting in June.
This time last year, Pinterest was my top referral. While I still do highly recommend focusing on a targeted Pinterest strategy and Pinterest optimized images on every post, I now focus primarily on search engine optimization, aka SEO.
I’ve been focusing on SEO for just about 8 months, and it already has taken over for the #1 referral to my website at 41% of my total traffic, while Pinterest is only 29.5%. SEO is a slow burn, so I’m excited to see how this grows with consistent blogging and SEO strategies increases this.
Top 5 Posts on Grass Fed Salsa Last Month:
- MTHFR Gene Mutation: 6 Simple Things To Do If You Have It!
- Mashed Cauliflower Breakfast Bowls
- Best Ever Nomato Sauce (AIP Nightshade Free Marinara)
- AIP Diet: What You Need To Know
- AIP Ranch Dressing
The MTHFR Gene Mutation article was something written with SEO in mind, and posted back in October. It was a surprise to see it ranking in the top 10 on Google for 4 different variations of MTHFR keywords!
Which of course means I decided to optimize that post with a specific opt in freebie, and a sales funnel to a relevant product. I haven’t turned on the sales funnel yet, but I’m eager to see the results of that once I do.
Email List Size
Total subscribers: 10,114
Technically, this is my email list size on May 4th as I write this, since I didn’t think to check it on the 1st.
Above is a screenshot of my Leads (subscriber) count in Kartra, my email service provider (ESP). I absolutely LOVE Kartra, and while it isn’t a cheap service, it replaces several other services I was using and ended up being less expensive once I stopped using them all. I’ll talk more about this in the Take Action section.
At the moment, I’m gaining all my leads organically and for free via opt ins on my website. I use Thrive Leads to obtain opt ins on my website, and HOLY SMOKES, this plugin has completely changed the game for my list growth. I’ll share more about this in the Take Action section below.
My email list is really important to me, and I’m constantly working to optimize it. I have sales funnels and welcome sequences so new subscribers get a chance to know me, but I would love to be sending 2-3 emails each week starting in June to help increase affiliate commission and connection with my community.
Domain Authority: 36
Domain Authority is a good metric to know for SEO. As a very generalized explanation of DA, the higher it is, the easier it is to rank for keywords with high competition. Knowing my DA will help me to target keywords that I have a chance to actually rank for, and will also show improvements as I continue to focus my efforts on SEO moving forward.
To find out your DA, you’ll download the Chrome extension from Moz. The closer your DA is to 100, the more traffic you’ll have and the better chance you’ll have at ranking for competitive keywords.
I’m calculating Revenue Per Mille (RPM), aka the revenue earned for every 1,000 pageviews, to show that you don’t need a ton of traffic to make good income.
Let’s look at a comparison of a website relying solely on ad revenue verses my site which diversifies it’s income with affiliates, ads, and digital products.
Starting with a look at a food blog relying on ad revenue. When looking at the RPM for your ad network, you might see an average of $15-20. Actually, $20 is probably on the high range for a food blog that also includes video and heavy placement of ads.
I’ll use $20 as an average RPM. For this food blog, they would need 250,000 pageviews on their website to earn $5,000 in revenue.
Conversely, if you diversify your income streams, begin working with affiliates and creating and selling digital products in addition to working with an ad network, you can optimize each and every pageview to have a greater financial impact. This is how I’m able to bring in over $5,000/month in my business without having even 50,000 pageviews, and without posting a single new blog post. In fact, the last blog post I shared (until this one) was on March 7th.
This is not to say creating content isn’t important, and ad revenue isn’t a financially viable solution. I’m just trying to show you that you can make money in many different ways on the internet. Don’t think traffic is the end all be all in determining a website’s success.
Remember – I’m able to make over $5,000/mo working about 10 hours a week on my website, and that’s because I designed my business to be profitable passively.
I'm teaching exactly how I designed my business to be profitable passively and how you can do that too in this free workshop on digital products and sales funnels, and in this free workshop (below) on network marketing for wellness biz owners.
Focus for April 2019
Not starting to focus on SEO sooner is by far my biggest regret with my business. I have several blog posts and recipes on my website that would have had the potential for a lot of traffic had I simply used the appropriate keywords.
If you’re not familiar with SEO, a basic overview is to choose a keyword to use within your blog post (plus some secondary keywords to target as well) and optimize the copy to include it. The goal is to rank for the keyword in organic searches.
Essentially, the words and phrases you use within your copy tells the search engine, like Google, what your post is about and what queries it helps to answer.
My process for SEO updates is to use SEMrush to track which keywords my blog posts are already ranking for, and then I make small adjustments to the copy and headers to see if that improves the rank.
WARNING: it’s addictive!
It’s so rewarding to see your hard work paying off as your content pushes higher and higher up the search list. The goal is to always get the #1 position or a featured snippet, but anywhere on page 1 (top 10) of a search result is coveted!
I partnered with Beautycounter in February of 2018, but I didn’t get started promoting the brand right away. In fact, my first paycheck with Beautycounter was in April of 2018. It’s so cool to look at the growth I’ve made with this affiliate in a year – my April ‘18 compared to April ‘19 income increased 3,483%! Yowza.
If I could recommend doing just 1 thing for your wellness business, it would be to find a network marketing company you align with and go all in. In doing so, you’ll learn how to sell a trusted product (which will give you experience to sell your own products!), you’ll instantly increase the revenue in your business, and you’ll get free coaching advice from your mentor.
I have a full Clean Beauty Boss coaching program for my Beautycounter team to help them grow their email list, connect with their community, get comfy with selling, and get familiar with SEO strategies so they can expand their customer base with organic search. Learn more about my experience with network marketing to see if Beautycounter would be a good affiliate program to add to your business below!
I’ll share more in the Take Action section on why I’ve found network marketing, Beautycounter specifically, to be so impactful in many areas of my business – not just the profit component.
Passion Meets Profit Program
In April I created a new sales funnel to help me passively sell one of my online programs. The whole process took me less than 1 day to complete, and after sharing about it on Instagram I realized how many people were interested in learning how to:
- create a high-converting sales funnel – my sales funnels convert above 10% and the standard is around 1%!
- create a digital product for the wellness industry that actually sells well so you can create a funnel for it.
After giving a peek into my process through IG stories, I offered to host a free workshop sharing my process. Pssst… click here and I’ll send you the link to watch the workshop!
I scheduled it 4 days in advance, and then realized how much more I could help wellness business owners if I was able to walk them through my simple, but successful process of creating a digital product (ebook, ecourse, meal plan, etc.), and then setting up to sell on autopilot with a sales funnel.
And so, my newest offering for my business was born!
I created, promoted, and launched the Passion Meets Profit group coaching program in a week, and I’ve never felt more called to teach a topic before in my life. I feel so energized and amped up to guide 10 women through this process so they can increase their revenue and start making money in their sleep!
This mastermind is perfect for wellness biz owners who want to create a digital product (ebook, ecourse, group coaching) from scratch, and others who will be refining and repositioning their (failed) digital product so it sells well in the wellness industry.
I created content for this 2nd group because I know how many incredible products, services, and programs aren’t selling well in our industry simply because the biz owner doesn’t know how to position the offer. I know because I was one of them! I kept trying to fit a square peg (product launch process designed for other industries) into a round hole (wellness industry).
And it wasn’t just me that the process wasn’t working for. I kept hearing from others in my community that they too were having a hard time selling their programs for the price they were truly worth.
After years of struggling with sales, I started listening to my intuition, and eventually came up with a system of polishing my failed digital product (a nutrition program, ecourse, and meal plan), repositioning it, and now I wake up to sales literally every day.
This is a screenshot of my email account showing 18 sales in 10 days – all without me doing a thing. I didn’t blog, I likely didn’t post on Instagram, and I didn’t write and press send on a single email. This is the beauty of a sales funnel that converts!
If you're interested in learning more about this program, you can click here to apply for our next round starting in September to get more details.
Goals for May 2019
Passion Meets Profit Program
Like I mentioned above, I’ll be filling the remaining seats in the Passion Meets Profit program, and will kick everything off the week of the 20th.
For the next few months, I’ll be guiding this group of business owners through the first steps of creating their digital product. The first step is diving into analytics to find opportunities for a profitable digital product and then identifying ways to infiltrate and capture their community members and potential customers with an opt-in freebie that will lead into the seed launch of their product.
Interested? I’d love to chat with you first to make sure it’s a good fit! You can apply here.
New content on Grass Fed Salsa
Publishing a few of the articles I currently have written and hoarded until I make time to create photos and post them. I actually have 7 of them already written!
- Chicken Salad Sandwiches on Sweet Potato Buns
- Complete Guide to the Best Healing Crystals
- How Do I Know If I Have MTHFR?
- Best Prenatal Vitamins for MTHFR
- How to Get 26-50% off Beautycounter (Promo Code)!
- How to Heal PCOS Naturally (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome)
- Part 3 in my AIP Diet Series
Seeing that list is just ridiculous. I think it’s time I teach my VA to post these for me so I can stop keeping them to myself, and start sharing them with you!
Clean Beauty Boss Coaching Program/Ecourse
Another program I’m working on behind the scenes is my Clean Beauty Boss Coaching Program and ecourse. This is basically the how-to guide to making money in your Beautycounter business. It teaches you everything you need to know in order to sell without alienating your friends and sounding salesy, hosting events and pop-ups in person and online that your friends actually want to go to, and most importantly, how to promote a brand that has a big social impact, while also supporting you and your family financially.
Although all the examples will be about Beautycounter specifically, the same techniques and strategies apply to any brand or product you’re promoting. This is one of the primary reasons I suggest every business owner find a network marketing brand they align with – the experience with sales is so valuable in knowing how to sell your own offerings!
I'm giving this program and ecourse to the Beautycounter consultants who join my team. If you’re interested, you can click here to learn more about Beautycounter and/or becoming a consultant, but I’d love to talk with you 1:1 about joining my team. If you’re reading this and wanting to add a seriously impactful revenue stream (25-35% commission!) to your life and/or business, we should chat! Comment on this post or email me, email@example.com
Leaving my full time job!
It's time to share the news that I'll be leaving my full time job as an Interior Designer so I can stay home with my daughter and spend more time on my own business. It's bittersweet to be leaving such a fulfilling career, but I'm excited to see what I can do to build this business once I have dedicated time to put towards it.
My last day will be May 17th, and then it's full time momma/wife/wellness website owner, baby. I'll be sharing all about this transition on Instagram if you care to follow along.
Here's how you can take action:
I’m including this section in my income reports, because as much as they are about my business and what happened throughout the month, I’m creating them so they help YOU.
Because all of the success I’ve had is thanks to you!
I worked on my business for 3 years before I started profiting, and I didn’t start truly turning a meaningful profit until about 12 months ago. Mostly because I was wasting my time on shit that didn’t matter, and doing things without a plan.That’s why I’m putting these action items in here so you can start making strides towards a truly profitable business for yourself. It’s possible for me, and it’s possible for you, too.
So, based on some of the things I learned and experienced in April, here’s how I recommend you take action…
New Lead Acquisition
Since I’m not constantly producing new articles on my website or posting on social media, leads/email subscribers are so important to my business.
I use opt-in freebies to capture email addresses, and based on what the person has opted in for, I send them a targeting set of emails to promote an offering that would be well suited for them. I optimize every single post on my website for new lead acquisition.
In September 2018, I switched my email service provider to Kartra, and started using Thrive Leads to optimize my email opt ins. I seriously cannot recommend these two more! They helped my opt in rate increase from .5% in September ‘18 to 4.7%.
You can see below that in April, my opt in rate dipped to 4.02%, but that was due to a tech issue with my opt in that I had unresolved for 2 weeks. It’s already back up and running at 4.7% just a few days into May so I think we’re back in the game.
Above is a screenshot of my monthly opt-in rates for all the opt-in freebies on my website. This includes squeeze page opt-ins which convert might convert around 50%, post-footer opt ins that might convert around .5%, and pop ups or ribbons which convert around 6%.
After the email and subscriber name is captured from Thrive Leads, it is sent to my Kartra account where the opt-in freebie is automatically sent to them and they get tagged with the appropriate info so I can market to them only with content they’re actually interested in.
Choose An Affiliate To Partner With
Network marketing companies can be so helpful to someone starting their business or someone who is new to selling. When you choose the right mentor, you’ll get business coaching advice, tips for selling in person and online, how to write copy that converts, connecting with your community, and earning their trust by promoting a product that people love and want to buy.
I can honestly say that joining Beautycounter in February of last year was the catalyst to my entire business taking off. It gave me the confidence to figure out how to position and sell my own products. It gave me the income I desperately needed in order to believe in the potential my own business had.
I’m not saying all this to get you on my team, I’m telling you this because if I could go back and change anything, it would have been to join a network marketing company that aligned with my brand sooner.
If you’re interested, you can click here to learn more about Beautycounter and/or becoming a consultant, but I’d love to talk with you 1:1 about joining my team. The commission structure is 25-35%, 9-12% commission on your team’s sales, and 25% off the products you purchase for yourself.
Let’s chat! Comment on this post or email me, firstname.lastname@example.org
Start Creating A Digital Product
45% of my monthly income comes from sales of my digital products like ebooks, online courses, meal plans, and nutrition programs. The best thing about this revenue stream is that I don’t need to trade time for dollars.
90% of my digital product sales at this point are passive, coming from sales funnels I implemented 6 months ago. So when I say I’m making money while I sleep, I mean it quite literally.
So you want to create a digital product but don’t know where to start? I mentioned earlier about Passion Meets Profit, my newest virtual group coaching program designed to help you create a profitable digital product and sell it on autopilot with a high-converting sales funnel. It starts May 20th and there are only a few spots left!
This program is perfect for you if you have a community but you aren't monetizing it well, or if you have a digital product that isn't selling as well as you know it should be. Click here to learn more!
This post was honestly a big undertaking, and took hours to pull together. Did you find it helpful? I'd love to know if you'd like for me to continue sharing these!
Pop any questions or insights in the comments below or email me, email@example.com.
Anne, this is SUCH an informative post. Thank you so so much!
I went through the NTP program with Michelle in 2016. Since then I’ve been wracking my brain on how to do what you both do . Looking forward to hearing y’all back on your podcast soon!