Case Study & Income Report #25 [January 2022 edition] | Skipblast

Case Study & Income Report #25 [January 2022 edition]

A bit late, but here we are with the first report of the new year.

I always hate the income reports at the start of the year cause the first few are always so low with the drop in ad rates and consumer spending.

So, spoiler alert – January is always a low month.

Anyways, let’s get to how things went with these sites.

Remember, the sites in this report are only a portion of my portfolio and not the only sites that bring in revenue.

**And as always, I’m an affiliate marketer and this post contains affiliate links, meaning I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link

What Happened In January

For me, I never really get much done on my sites in January as I’m too busy doing things like updating posts and doing some analysis on portfolio performance.

And if you recall back to last January, I got to spend the month moving back to the US and getting all setup to live in the States again (even though I plan on leaving again in the future).

This year, I took some extended holiday time off early in the month and then found out an unvaxxed extended family member was in the hospital with COVID.

Doctors told his wife to start making end of life arrangements, but then miraculously he did not die and finally woke up and got moved to a rehab facility a few days ago.

Needless to say, this was not a normal work month for me.

The Sites – January Update

Site #1

It’s gone from my portfolio.

So, no more updates on this one.

Site #2

Here’s what you should know about this site:
  • Niche: Transportation
  • Monetization: affiliate (Amazon + others) + display ads
  • Income Goal: I’ll be happy with $1000/mo but I think it has the potential for mid four figures monthly based on a conversation I had with someone in this niche.
  • History: Site has been earning steadily and is profitable. It was sitting, neglected, when I decided to pick it back up this year.
  • Growth Plan: hit it with lots of informational articles to optimize content for ad money (first goal = Ezoic and eventually Mediavine). I also need to update old content & utilize more non-Amazon affiliates with longer cookies. I may end up testing Pinterest on this site to see how it performs.
  • The case study angle: prioritizing links over content prioritizing content over links + expanding beyond Amazon + beyond Google traffic

RPMs for this one didn’t drop by as much as I was expecting, which was an interesting development.

The longer I hold this site, the more I see myself keeping it for longer than expected simply due to the revenue ceiling being higher than I previously thought.

Google seems to really like this site as it is growing quite nicely currently.

site 2 analytics

Overall, the traffic for this site went up almost 20% compared to December 2021.

That works out to around 5,000 more sessions in January.

But what is really interesting is when you compare it to the previous year!

Compared to January 2021, traffic is up almost 456%

That is quite the growth for 12 months, eh? I’d love to keep repeating that!

As a result of the personal drama in my life, I only managed to get up one new post for that new topic cluster than I’m working on for this site.

I think I need to get a dedicated writer for this site to really capitalize on the high RPMs and the Google love.

New posts for this site: 1 (not outsourced)

New links for this site: zero

Total income for this site last month: $867.68

Last month’s income is a mix of AdSense, premium display ads, Amazon affiliate, and other affiliates. I use the AAWP plugin on this site.

Summary for site #2: A slight drop income and nice boost in traffic. Not surprised with the income drop since January RPMs are always low.

Site #3

Here’s what you should know about this site:
  • Niche: Health/Fitness
  • Monetization: affiliate (Amazon + others) + display ads (and maybe products?)
  • Income Goal: Looking to sell once I’m stable at somewhere around $7500-$8000/monthly $4,500
  • History: Site has been earning steadily and is profitable. It is somewhat seasonal, though the niche is evergreen.
  • Growth Plan: Hit it with lots of informational articles to optimize content for ad money. This site has enough traffic for Ezoic, but I’m holding out to qualify for Mediavine and then AdThrive. I also need to update old content & utilize more non-Amazon affiliates with longer cookies/higher paying offers. HARO is the only link building that I currently have planned for this site.
  • The case study angle: prioritizing content over links + building a mailing list + monetization diversification + alternative traffic growth

It felt good to get back to work on this site after being a bit burnt out on the topic.

One interesting thing that happened with this site in January is that I got an unsolicited offer to buy the site (but I’m not interested in selling).

And, traffic is up, which is no surprise considering fitness peaks this time of year.

site 3 analytics

Traffic for the month was up around 20% and this site seems to like to stay around the 100,000 monthly pageviews mark right now.

And when you compare it to January 2021, the traffic is up by around 80%, which is awesome but also expected as I put up a LOT of new content last year on this site.

The surprising thing about this site is how steep the RPM drop was for January – it was brutal for this one.

New posts for this site: 10 (not outsourced)

New links for this site: none

Total income for this site last month: $3,469.35

Last month’s income is a mix of premium display ads, Amazon affiliate, and other affiliates. I use the AAWP plugin on this site as well.

Summary for site #3: Traffic increased as expected and income went down due to lower RPMs. Overall a great month for the site, as I did expect the revenue drop.

Site #4

Here’s what you should know about this site:
  • Niche: Lifestyle
  • Monetization: display ads + affiliates + products + info products (+ possibility for real world business offshoot)
  • Income Goal: I think I’ll be happy with $2500/mo but I know of a few people in this niche making $20K+/month.
  • Growth Plan: Right now I’m all about content creation. Next up is traffic diversification and this niche does well on Pinterest. For link building, I haven’t decided yet. There are a lot of guest posting opportunities in this niche though.
  • The case study angle: mega authority site from day one to mega status –> building a brand from the beginning with long term growth focus on diversifying traffic + monetization

Traffic for this site did drop a bit in January, and I did not investigate why.

analytics site 4

Overall though, it was only around 400 sessions for the traffic loss.

However, this site doesn’t get much traffic to begin with, so it is more substantial than it seems.

Since I have long-term hold ambitions for this site, I’m doing some content that is ultra competitive knowing that it won’t rank now but it will in the future.

So, the only post that I got up this month was a BIG one, both in word count and competitiveness.

This isn’t a strategy that I recommend, unless you know what you’re getting into and have those long-term play ambitions.

But for me, it makes sense right now.

New posts for this site: one

New links for this site: zero

Total income for this site last month: $26.77

Only has one post live with an affiliate link, and AdSense is bringing in the monies.

Summary for site #4: Only added one new post targeting a mega keyword, surprised by the traffic drop but the income drop was expected.

New Expenses for January 2022

If you want to know about any recurring expenses or previous expenses, then refer to February 2020’s report in this section.

Here’s new expenses for the sites for January 2022:

Site #2

  • $6.50 Vultr server at Cloudways (two sites on this server, so I split out the cost for just this site)

Site #3

  • $22.45 hosting with BigScoots (this account is split with another site)

Site #4

  • $6.50 Vultr server at Cloudways (two sites on this server, so I split out the cost for just this site)

Final Thoughts & Summary

Overall, things are pretty much going as I expected with these sites.

January is always a revenue drop month, and this year was no different.

Though when I compare the performance of these sites to January 2021, I am quite pleased with how things are growing.

4 thoughts on “Case Study & Income Report #25 [January 2022 edition]”

  1. I had one of my sites accepted into Mediavine last week. Am moving it from Kinsta to Bigscoots this coming weekend … will come back and click through your affiliate link when I do 😉

    Reply
      • Thank you! Interestingly, I instantly went from an EMPV of $6.50 (after premium fees) at Ezoic to a Sessions RPM (same as EPMV) of $18.50 in the first week. It’s a total game changer for me. I have decided to do this full time now and am going full digital nomad. I’m of to Thailand for a month on the 29th and the heading over to Bali 😉

        Reply
        • Nice! On average I’ve seen my RPM double when moving from Ezoic to MV/AdThrive. I bet you’re really looking forward to those Q4 RPMs 🙂

          Reply

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