Income Report: How My Blog Performed As A Business In The First Half Of 2014

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Back in 2009 if you asked me whether I thought my blog could ever make more money than my day job, I would have said “Hell No!”.

Mid Year Income MWQHJ

In fact, my Mom is still amazed that is able to make any money at all. Just the other day, I had a Skype chat with my mom and she was like…

Mom: Let me get this straight. People sit at their computers, click on your ads and you make money? I still don’t understand how that works. So can you just sit at home all day and click on your own ads? Would you like me to help you out by clicking on one of your a—

Me: NOOO!!! Do not click on my ads or I might get banned!

The truth of the matter is that most people are very skeptical about blogging and the viability of running an online business.

90% of my friends and family do not realize how much money there is to be made online. 90% of my friends are happily working as an employee and do not own their own websites.

Now running an online business or a blog is not for everyone but it can be very lucrative if you are willing to stick with it for several years.

In fact, running a business online is the best way to leverage your time because a computer server does most of the heavy lifting.

Prior to running my podcast, I was spending roughly 5 hours a week on and I ended up making slightly more than day job salary in 2013.


This year in 2014, the earnings from my blog are poised to blow my day job income out of the water.

Towards the end of May, I had already surpassed 6 figures in profit and thanks to numerous improvements in my sales funnel and the fact that my blog revenue tends to be backend loaded, the rest of the year should be even better.

The best part is that I’m gaining a lot of new skills in areas that have been very uncomfortable for me in the past.

For example, I now consider myself a half decent marketer and salesman whereas 5 years ago I never would have thought that I could sell anything.

Deep down, I’m an engineer at heart and if you have any friends that are engineers, you know that we typically hate marketing anything let alone selling ourselves. Truth be told, sometimes I’d rather just sit in front of a computer monitor and code all day:)

But in 2013, I broke out of my shell and spoke at a conference for the very first time. My speech was very well received and thanks to PT, I will be speaking again at FinCon this year in New Orleans.

Click here to check out my FinCon speech and learn how I make money with an email autoresponder sequence.

I Launched My Podcast

MWQHJ Podcast
On April 8th of this year, I confronted yet another fear head on and launched the My Wife Quit Her Job Podcast. Now it’s one thing to write articles for my blog and hide behind my computer screen, but putting my voice out there for everyone to hear was pretty darn scary.

You can ask my wife just how frustrated I was in the beginning because I was driving her nuts. Episode #1 of my podcast took me over 2 weeks to record and I re-did my first episode from scratch over 5 times. In fact, it was a regular occurrence for my wife to hear me cursing into the microphone when I screwed up in the middle of a recording.

You’re listening to the My Wife Quit Her Job podcast, where we bring in entrepreneurs bootstrapped to their businesses…bootstrap businesses….strapped entrepreneurs…DAMN IT!!!…SON OF A B$%^&!!!…SOMEBODY SHOOT ME!!! WHY THE HELL AM I DOING THIS STUPID PODCAST AGAIN!?!

And even after all of that effort and frustration, my first episode still didn’t turn out as well as I would have liked:)

But I can say this. Running my podcast has forced me to meet new people and to take the initiative to reach out to other entrepreneurs. These are tasks that I’ve been traditionally very bad at doing.

For the last 5 years, I’ve been somewhat of a hermit. I wrote articles every week but everything was done in a vacuum. By forcing myself to reach out and interview other people, I have expanded my network tremendously and met many new people that I now call my friends.

Even though the podcast probably won’t directly make me very much money, the people that I’ve met and the additional contacts that I have made have been priceless.

Thankfully, my podcast has been very well received which makes me extremely happy. Shortly after launch, my podcast hit the #2 ranking in the overall business category and the #1 ranking in marketing.

iTunes Rank 2

In addition to the podcast, I’ve also been offering free ecommerce consults to 1 lucky winner every month. At first I was a little squeamish about talking to random people but it has proven to be a very rewarding experience for me. Here’s a testimonial I received from a recent consult.

In talking with Steve one-on-one I quickly learned that he is experienced and extremely knowledgeable in starting online retail sites. Steve and I discussed a few different ideas. With his analytical approach and market place knowledge combined, it was much more clear which idea would be the most logical to pursue. I came to our consultation with a laundry list of questions and he was able to fire back responses. Steve is extremely experienced and strategic in what he does. Talking to him for just 30 minutes probably saved me weeks (maybe even months) of pursuing my online store from the incorrect angle.

Click here to join my contest and win a free business consult

I Redesigned The Blog

After several years of having the same old, crappy design, I finally decided to redesign from scratch to make it more user friendly. Over the years, my goals with the blog have changed and it made sense to restructure the site to increase the level of engagement.

My first order of business was removing all of the spammy ads on the site. At the time of the redesign, I was very squeamish about taking away those ads because I was making between 1200-1600 dollars a month from them.

Would I be able to make enough money through increased engagement to replace that lost income? Was I going to regret removing those ads? Here’s what ended up happening.

First and foremost, the number of newsletter signups increased right off the bat by 108%. By giving readers less opportunities to click away from my site, my bounce rate and time on site numbers increased quite dramatically as well.

So did I miss the 1200-1600 dollars a month from ads? Well let’s just say that my blog profits are up 71.5% year over year so far. Removing the ads was a no brainer.

The redesign of my blog was also the first time that I had the cojones to contract out the design to a 3rd party developer. Normally, I do everything myself but it made sense for me to outsource the work in order to increase my productivity.

Click here for a behind the scenes look at my blog redesign

I Redesigned My Email Autoresponder Sequence

As I mentioned before, for the longest time I’ve always been afraid to sell. Even though I know my online store course is the best ecommerce course out there, I always felt awkward actively pushing my own products.

But after speaking with Dan Fagella, I realized that I wasn’t giving potential customers enough exposure to my product in order to convince them to buy it. And even though I’ve managed to sell over 700 copies of my course, there were still many ways to improve my sales funnel.

Though my exact email autoresponder strategy is beyond the scope of this post, let’s just say that my conversion rates have gone up dramatically since I redesigned my email sales funnel.

What’s In Store For The Second Half Of 2014?

Because my blog has grown tremendously in the past few years, I’ve been getting a lot of questions regarding why I haven’t quit my job. Now I’ve written about this in depth in the past (click here to read about why I haven’t quit) and the same reasons hold true.

Even though I’d be fine from a monetary standpoint, I don’t think that running my blog and course full time would be enough stimulation for my brain. On one hand, I want to spend as much time as possible with my kids while they still think their Dad is the greatest guy in the world.

But on the other hand, I’m a hardware engineer at heart and I know that if I ever gave up engineering, then it would not be easy to go back.

It’s a tough decision to make and it’s been weighing on me more and more. But these are good problems to have and I hope to have it all figured out soon.

In any case, I want to end this post by thanking all of you for supporting my blog and my podcast. I really appreciate it and I couldn’t have done it without you. Here’s to a profitable 2nd half of 2014!

photo credit: jurvetson

Ready To Get Serious About Starting An Online Business?

If you are really considering starting your own online business, then you have to check out my free mini course on How To Create A Niche Online Store In 5 Easy Steps.

In this 6 day mini course, I reveal the steps that my wife and I took to earn 100 thousand dollars in the span of just a year. Best of all, it's free and you'll receive weekly ecommerce tips and strategies!

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20 thoughts on “Income Report: How My Blog Performed As A Business In The First Half Of 2014”

  1. aaron says:

    This post is why I love your site. Down, dirty and honest. Thanks for all you do and the help you have GIVEN FREELY asking for little in return. Please keep it up. You’ve given me the confidence to start up a drop shipping business and blog.

    1. Steve C says:

      Thanks Aaron. Really appreciate the kind words!

  2. Ozeal says:

    What’s up Steve!

    I discovered you through a podcast interview, checked out your site/podcast and been a fan ever since. I appreciate all the great content you provide online and on your podcast interviews. This is a great post and mad love/respect for your transparency. I dig the notion of sticking w/the work you do even though it’s a day job. You’re in a position where it’s by choice and that’s awesome brother. I believe that’s where most of us want to be. Keep up the great work and hope to connect with ya soon.

    1. Steve C says:

      Thank you Ozeal. It’s really hard to measure the effects of having a podcast so it’s good to know that there are regular listeners out there! Really appreciate the comment.

  3. Anouk says:

    Hi Steve,

    You are saying:

    “So did I miss the 1200-1600 dollars a month from ads? Well let’s just say that my blog profits are up 71.5% year over year so far. Removing the ads was a no brainer.”

    Sorry, but I don’t understand that. How can you make more profits from your blog if you have removed the ads? The money must come from somewhere…I know you have some affiliated links on your site but let’s be honest, most of your blog earnings cannot come from those links.

    Maybe you were talking about a rise of your subscription classes?

    1. Steve C says:

      More engagement means more newsletter subscribers. More subscribers means more everything. I go over this in my FinCon speech. Give it a watch if you have a free moment.

  4. Anne @ Money Propeller says:

    Thank you for sticking with the podcasts! Yours are my favourite!
    You are giving me hope; I spent a lot of time cursing the infographic that I made on the weekend and have lots of ideas for more, but do not want to go through that process again every week or two.

  5. Joe says:

    Great job! You’re a Rockstar! I’m looking forward to your FinCon talk. So are you still going to stick with your day job? πŸ™‚

  6. Alexis says:

    I myself don’t like going onto a website and seeing a ton of ads everywhere. It takes away the reader from the actual story and can make a person get off task. It also allows the blog to appear a lot cleaner and organized.

  7. Joanne Sugai says:

    Really like your very informative and entertaining blog posts! One of the few that I actually read all the way through! I’ve been watching lately as I just discovered it. I think you would be perfect … teaching about how to start an online store! Keep up the good work! Joanne

  8. Lisa E. @ Lisa vs. the Loans says:

    I love listening to your podcast. Your success with this blog/online business is amazing and inspiring!

  9. The Wallet Doctor says:

    Glad to hear things are going so well for you! I totally understand your hesitation at quitting your job. If you are getting something important out of it, then its worth pursuing. But its great that you can make the choice based on what you want and not on the financial aspects alone!

  10. Kate @ Money Propeller says:

    Another solid month income again! Before, when I just started working as a V.A. my mom always asked me about my job, what is my work and how did I get my payment? In fact, I can’t count how many times she asked me about that! πŸ™‚

  11. Carole @ Rustic Artistry says:

    Your success is inspiring. It’s kind of funny that you thought of yourself as a hermit because to those of us that have been reading your blog for a couple of years you’ve always put yourself out there. So you were much less of a hermit than you thought πŸ™‚

  12. Chris Guthrie says:

    Looking forward to meeting you at FinConExpo. But seriously its time to ditch the job.

    Back in 2009 I was 25 when I lost my job that paid $60k a year. Very next year I more than tripled my income and so far (fingers crossed) I’ve made more money every year after that.

    Quitting your job will be the absolute best thing you do for your business.



    1. Steve C says:

      Hey Chris,

      It’s not about the money at this point. Right now I lead a hardware design team that develops microprocessors that power cell phones, digital cameras, printers…you name it. There is a lot of creative freedom with my job and I enjoy doing it. I don’t think that this whole blogging/ecommerce thing could keep my mind stimulated but that’s just my personality. I’ve actually considered joining another startup device company. Still not ready to give up tech.

      1. Chris Guthrie says:

        Re-Reading my comment and it could have come off negatively / know-it-all(y) so if that’s the case not my intention hah.

        I do remember reading another one of your earlier blog posts where you mentioned that if you left the job you’d also be left behind in terms of the technical space always progressing so that’s another reason why you thought about not doing it.

        For me it’s been great but I will admit that nearly 5 years on my own (but fortunately now with employees and some business partners) it is a lot different than where I was coming from.

        Either way my friend Brandon (BiggerPockets) mentioned he met you at an earlier FinConExpo and said you were a cool dude so will be cool to meet you at that event this year.


      2. Steve C says:

        Absolutely. Looking forward to meeting up!

  13. Chris @ CentsToMe says:

    Awesome success and Congrats!

  14. Steve says:

    Great stuff, I’ve got a new site to read and learn from. Found my way here from an interview you did with Sam over at Financial Samurai – great interview by the way!

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