December is usually a great month for bloggers in terms of revenue as everybody enters the holiday spirit and starts spending. So if you want to know how I did in what is, for many, the best blogging month of the year, check out my Niche Empire: December 2014 income report.
What happened in December 2014
In my case, even though this was the best month of the year, things didn’t go as well as I would’ve liked them to be. This is especially because I wasn’t able to dedicate the required time to my online projects and, once again, real life kicked in. First, and most important, my beloved grandmother suffered a second and third stroke and is still in critical condition. This meant that I had to spend a lot of time away from home and I rarely found the time to focus. But life has to go on and we should not let events like this one pull us back.
Also, I have decided to completely put aside – at least for now – my Niche Site #2, my general parenting blog. I never had enough time for it and it was getting nowhere. With no new articles published, nor any link building in the past two months and normally no increase in traffic, it’s time to focus on other projects. So from today on, I’m only going to share with you 4 niche sites instead of 5. Because, yes, sometimes you do have to move on!
These being said, let’s see how things went for my Niche Empire in December 2014!
Niche Site #1
My insta-success website is still doing well, but it’s starting to go on a decline. The only surprising thing, in my opinion, is that it managed to last this long – and is still delivering in terms of income. Even though we’ve had roughly 10,000 less uniques than in November, there’s nothing I can do. It is a micro niche website based on a viral event which is no longer viral. Let’s see how much it lasts, though, because I am sure it hasn’t given its final breath yet!
In terms of revenue, we’re still doing great: $215.16 in AdSense and Infolinks ads. The CPC actually increased in December, but I am sure that it’s just the holiday season and I expect to see a huge drop both in traffic and revenue/CPC in January.
Niche Site #2
My super affiliate blog in the making finally started to look like the promising website I had in mind months ago when I launched it. I want to go 100% clean with it, so I have done ZERO link building (and got no organic links, unfortunately) but it’s growing on its own – slowly, but surely. The most surprising thing, however, is that the most popular article on the website is the only article that has no affiliate links. Could this be a sign that Google doesn’t really like affiliate blogs or articles that much? Maybe it’s too early to say, but it’s definitely something worth checking out in the future.
In terms of revenue, the website generate $8.59 in affiliate sales, which is better than nothing, but things can still get a lot better. I have to work on increasing the session duration – 24 seconds on average, for articles that are usually over 1,000 words long… that doesn’t look good! I am not worried about the Bounce Rate, though and I consider it normal for this type of website.
Niche Site #3
I have published zero articles on my expat blog, but I was still expecting better results. However, traffic recovered after last month and increased a little bit – just 30 extra uniques, but hey – it’s an increase! I am planning to give it a major try in the first months of the year, though, as people might prepare for holidays here. Hopefully real life will allow me to do it.
In terms of revenue, the numbers kept growing, which is extremely encouraging: $14.31 in AdSense ads. I’ll take that!
Niche Site #4
My viral traffic blog recorded a pretty big decline in December, but I found out in the previous months that it’s a complete rollercoaster – an unpredictable one too – with this types of websites. You can’t anticipate, at this level (which is very low) when and what stories go viral, if they ever go there and which are completely ignored. However, I am going to keep my focus on this one because it was the pleasant surprise of 2014, turning from “one of my websites” to one of my best performing ones. Which is pretty nice.
In terms of income, here is how things stand:
CPM Ads: $53.61
TOTAL: $279.50 ($36.82 less than last month)
So for December 2015, here are the total earnings from my 4 niche sites:
Plans & Predictions for January
My only concern is that my grandmother is in a critical condition and the doctors didn’t even try to encourage us. She is the person that basically raised me and we have a really, really strong connection so I anticipate that January will be a pretty sad month from this point of view, although miracles always happen.
I have been able to focus pretty much on working in January, though, and I hope I can bury myself in work to forget about things that upset me. However, I have no predictions for the first month of 2015 in terms of quantity and quality of blogging, but from past experience I can clearly say that revenue will be down as advertisers no longer pay the big bucks for the holiday shoppers.
How was your December 2014? Did you manage to break any records?