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Monday, June 27, 2011

I Got My Work Cut Out For Me

Recently, Felicia at No Job For Mom was celebrating a $100 day with AdSense.  Clearly she is deserving as she has spent quite a bit of time building up her residual income and is the consummate online professional in my book.  But she offers a brief glimpse at her humble beginnings in a follow up post where she explains that she earned all of $16.25 for a whole year.  Needless to say, that is quite a journey and one that I would like to achieve if only one-tenth as much.

It got me to thinking.  What does it take to get a $100 day on AdSense?  Felicia has talked about having multiple blogs, but what does it actually mean?  So I asked and found out that she has 16 active blogs of which 4 bring in the majority of her income.  She is batting about 0.250 for all you baseball fans.  Not enough to make it to the Hall of Fame, but certainly respectable to have a decent career in the Show.  I figure if I can just make it to triple A ball, I will be blessed.

Now what will it take to make it to triple A?  A lot of work, that's what.  I figure that I could probably achieve decent success with maybe 10-15% of my blogs.  Decent would be defined as earning $5 per day.  If I could simply put up 3 blogs in each of the next 12 years, I could probably hit my goal of making $10 per day with AdSense or even so sort of affiliate program.  I have a couple ideas that can get me through the rest of this year already.

The best part of Felicia's strategy is that she doesn't do any backlinking to speak of.  That is great news since I really don't like that type of busy work.  I am doing some blog commenting but that is more social and getting to know fellow bloggers.  She does writes great content and let's nature take its course.  My content will probably only be decent, hence the 10% success rate.  But even getting 3 blogs moderately successful at $5 per day would lead to almost $500 per month which is nothing to sneeze at.

That being said, I really have my work cut out for me to get 36 blogs online with a fair amount of decent content for each one.  But breaking it down over the course of a decade really shouldn't be all that difficult.  So my goal is to actually act on the two ideas that I have for the remainder of the year and get something up and running.  I don't think that part will be all that difficult.  The hard part will be maintaining my patience while waiting for traffic to develop and not giving up entirely.  There are times that I wonder why I am putting in so much effort.  But, you know what, it is simply a lot of fun!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I Just Need Twelve Years and Ten Dollars

I had the opportunity to play golf yesterday afternoon for the first time this month.  Take a busy June and mix in plenty of rain and there is little time for golf.  But the schedule was light at work, and I was able to get out at 2:30 to meet a friend at the golf course and play 18 holes starting about 3:30.  We got the twilight rate for $20 which included green fees and a cart.  We managed to only get sprinkled on for one hole and finished before the rain came in full force.

I had such a good time that it got me to thinking of retirement.  If I could get all my debts paid off including mortgages over the next 12 years, then I could use the income from the rental properties to pay for living expenses.  Then if I could just get $10 per day from my blogs and other online sources, I could golf 3 afternoons per week at the twilight rate.  The youngest child would be 23 years old and out of the house so I would have plenty of time on my hands and could even have lots of time to do other things like travel. 

Now, I just have to come up with a workable plan on the debt since I figure I can get to $10 per day in the next decade fairly easily.

My Newest Site

You can now check out my newest site, Cash Flow Mantra, by clicking on the feed on the right.  I figured that I might as well share it for several reasons.  First, the majority of my referral traffic for OptionsDude comes from this blog so I would gain a likely source of traffic for the new one.  Second, it isn't some super lucrative niche that is easy to monetize so I am not all that worried about anyone stealing my ideas.  My ideas aren't all that brilliant anyway.  If someone thinks that my stuff which will be lucky to get $1 per month is worth stealing, go for it.  Third, I am sure that someone here might have some good comments or suggestions on the new blog so feel free to visit and comment.

Currently, you can get to most of my online ventures through this blog.  It is like the central hub for everything and allows you to see feeds from HubPages, OptionsDude, and Cash Flow Mantra.  I do have a few other content sites that have a little bit of material on them, but they earn nothing.  These three will be the main sources of income for this year.  I would like to develop another blog possibly geared toward sales and Amazon affiliate income.  I have an idea but I wouldn't even start that until after a few more months if I do it.

I am pleased with the progress that I am making with Cash Flow Mantra.  I have been working my fingers off commenting on personal finance blogs and gathering an audience.  It does seem to be working.  I bet by the end of the month, I will have as much traffic as at OptionsDude.  If I get any boost of traffic from this site, then I know I will have more.  It is probably because the site has a more broad topic than simply options.  Options are a fairly specific investment topic with a limited audience.

Feel free to stop by my newest site, read a few posts, comment on them, or come back here and let me know what you think.  As always, thanks for reading.  I appreciate it immensely.

Friday, June 17, 2011

A Great Day for My New Sites

Yesterday was a great day for my new sites.  Both of them had some AdSense earnings!  This was actually the first time I had earned anything at all on my newest site.  It is about 3 weeks old so I am hoping that this is a good indication of things to come.  Now these results are relative because there are many days since the Panda Update that I don't earn anything on AdSense.  I will be lucky to get to $20 total this month.

But I am encouraged that I am starting to get some traffic at both of these sites.  I am hoping that I can continue to build the sites and post so that eventually I could have a couple hundred posts each at these sites.  I plan on spending about 2 years to develop and work on content.  I have already spent two years on HubPages and have 200 Hubs so I figure that the precedent is there.  I think that I will actually be more motivated since these sites will be all mine.  I don't have to worry about them being removed from the internet unless I take them down.

This is a short post, but I just wanted to share my excitement.  I have a few posts that I want to write for those sites this weekend and lots of other stuff to do so it will be challenging to be sure.  But I have the ideas in my head so it seems like it just may be a matter of writing it all down.  Sorry this is so short.  Have a good weekend.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Nice Surprise From List My Five

I had pretty much given up on List My Five.  It is one of those content farms that got slapped by the Panda Update.  My earnings there hadn't done much.  I didn't even earn a single penny during the month of April so I figured it was totally dead.  So, imagine my surprise when I logged on a couple weeks ago just for kicks and noticed that I had made over $3.00 in the month of May.  In fact, I had made $3.83 which was enough to get me over the $10 Paypal payout threshold.

So as a result, a few days ago, $11.23 was deposited into my Paypal account.  Yippee!  What a nice little payment considering I hadn't even really thought much about List My Five.  That will pay for one month's worth of hosting giving me a little more breathing room to get my own sites up and running.  At least now, I don't have any balance and can restart accumulating some earnings if that is even going to happen all that often.  So far for the month of June, I have earned nothing.  I would be thrilled if I could get one payout (and hence one month of hosting) each year.

It shouldn't be that much longer and I will reach the payout threshold of $50 for the HubPages Ad Program which would be paid through Paypal as well.  That would mean that a full six months would be covered.  If you have been keeping up with this blog, you know that it has been my desire to not spend any of my own money and only utilize my time for this hobby/part-time venture.  So far, I have been able to do that thanks to the content farms.  I would like to continue to find some sites that will pay via Paypal and use that for all of my expenses with any Amazon or AdSense payments representing 100% profit.

Anyway, I just thought I would share and let everyone know that even though I haven't done anything at all on List My Five, I was still able to make a little bit of money.  It isn't a lot, but I am not one to turn down $11.23 if I have earned it.  Has anyone else had a nice surprise lately, whether on the internet or not?  Feel free to comment below.  As always, thanks for reading and enjoy your summer.  The weather has been very nice here almost like spring.  I need to get out and golf a little more.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Perfect So Far as an Amazon Affiliate

The changes to the Google Algorithm have really hurt my online earnings.  Considering HubPages traffic is still declining (although I think it might be flattening out), eHow will no longer provide me with any residual income, and my new sites are just getting off the ground, there is really little positive news on the earnings report with the exception of Amazon.

Mind you it doesn't take much to make me excited but I have had some orders for each of the first six months of 2011.  Some of the orders have even been somewhat large.  I have gotten one payment from Amazon so far this year of $22.33 and should be getting another one in the near future.  It took me 18 months to receive my first payment of $11.47 in November of last year.  Then just 5 months later, I got another.  Now I have been selling something every month and will be getting another payment.  I could even get a third before the end of the year.  Who knows?  I might even be getting monthly payments in the next year or two.

This silver lining offers a little bit of encouragement for my new sites.  I know that I am starting over, and it will take about 2 years for me to really get some decent traffic and establish these sites.  There are days that the effort seems fruitless.  I remember those dog days of summer two years ago just hoping that someone would read one of my Hubs.  I remember logging on to the AdSense account just hoping but seeing day after day of nothing.  It is the same now but I am encouraged.  Amazon gives me hope.  Just by working daily and publishing a few times each week will mean over 100 new blog posts each year.  Little by little the traffic will build, and I will begin to see the results.

I think for the next post, I want to post my writing, traffic, and earning goals for the remainder of the year.  I realize that I am having to go back and recalibrate in the light of all the online changes, but I believe I am on the right path and will be in for a big surprise come 2 years from now.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Excited About Blogging Again

Well, I started my own WordPress blog on HostGator, and I must say that I am excited again.  It is fun and challenging to try and start from scratch and try to build traffic and an audience of consistent readers.  Right now, I am spending a lot of time commenting on other blogs to try and get my name out there and develop social traffic at the same time that I develop links.  This seemed to be a good strategy for my other new site,  As such, I think it will be a good thing for my new blog as well.  Since the topic is a little more broadly based, I am hoping that I can generate a little more interest.  I will know more over the next few months.

I am starting to make plans and goals for the new site as well.  I am not quite ready to post yet but in the next few days will be solidifying my plans for the remainder of the year.  I am hoping to be able to make up for the lost time that I suffered at the hands of the Panda Update.  It sure put my income back by almost a year as far as I can tell so I do have some catching up to do.  However, now that I am getting the hang of working on my own site, I think that things are more promising than before.

My new site is getting indexed in about 48 hours as best I can tell.  I have about 5 blog posts that are indexed and 2 more that have been recently written which should be in Google by the end of the week.  Having the site as part of Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools seems to help.  Plus the fact that I am commenting on other blogs after each post to take advantage of ComLuv also seem to help.  This is another reason that I think the blog will grow relatively quickly compared to my other work so far.  It is certainly nothing compared to what the professionals are able to do, but I am OK with that.  I am just a part-time blogger anyway.

Anyway, I am having a blast building something from the ground up and am curious to see what the possibilities will be.  I have been writing online for 2 years now.  The majority of that time was spent with the content farms and sites like Xomba, eHow, and HubPages.  I can't help but think where I might be if I had spent the time developing my own site or several.  I might have 200 posts on an authority blog rather than 200 disparate Hubs.  If you are even considering getting your own blog, I would suggest it.  HostGator has been easy to use and the installation of WordPress was pretty easy.  I can't believe I waited so long.  Just click on the HostGator banner above to start building your own blog now.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Earnings During the First Three Months of OptionsDude

I thought I would take some time and make a brief report about my progress and earnings at since it has been a full three months since I started the site.  I am also wanting to document this information so that I can compare the progress with my newest financial blogging site to see where the two will compare.  My goal is to have the site pay for itself during the first year of life.  After that, I would like to see it grow earnings ever so slightly so that it could be profitable after that.

The cost to set up the site with Weebly was $40 which included the domain and hosting.  Weebly takes a 50-50 split on AdSense impressions so that the cost of hosting is actually supplemented by my future earnings.  It turns out to be an easy way to start a site which doesn't involve much technical knowledge at all as well as an inexpensive way to get started.  It does come with a cost and that is 50% of your earnings.  There also seems to be less flexibility from a design standpoint.

I can see where a Weebly website would have a place.  I appreciate the opportunity to work on my site and have found that I am mainly blogging about my options trades and adding in a few other blog posts.  I have some articles at the site and will add some more content over time.  Initially I thought a more static site would be the way to go, but I have found that I prefer the blogging format to a much greater degree.

That being said, I think I still have a decent future with OptionsDude.  I have developed a following among several financial bloggers.  I think many are interested in the information that I am publishing and the practical experience that I bring.  I am also getting search engine traffic which is slowly increasing.  I am excited to see what the remainder of the year has in store.  I think that I could double my traffic and maybe even see triple the search traffic that I am seeing now.

Increasing the search engine traffic is vital to being able to increase the earnings since social traffic will not click on any of the AdSense ads.  That is OK though.  I have always believed that overall traffic has some impact upon search engine results and authority.

As for the earnings, I have earned a total of $3.47.  That may not sound like a lot, but I anticipate that it will be gradually increasing so that by the end of the year, I would expect to be earning a solid $5 or more per month.  I believe that I am truly on pace to earn the $40 I would need by the end of the first 12 months.  Added content is indexed fairly quickly.  Plus, I plan on adding a couple blog posts per week which should help add to the visibility of the site.
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