I have voluntarily skipped April and May income reports to combine it with June’s mainly because of my current situation. To be honest, not much happened during those three months and I thought it would have been pretty boring to write or read about it. Now that I’m working full-time, though, it gets interesting!
I spent the time from June 2016 to June 2017 driving across North & Central America. We came back to the U.S. in April and only returned to our home in Quebec on July 1st. Therefore, over the past 3 months, I haven’t been working much on my online company. And here’s the thing when you don’t work on your own business: Nothing much happens without hard work. Before we talk about the last 2 months, let’s recap what happened over the past 2 years to understand where I’m starting now with my new full-time project:
Let’s go back in time
I’ve been doing online stuff since 2006. I started making real money back in 2008. Between 2009 and 2011 inclusively, my partner and I (we’ve worked together since the very beginning) averaged a total of about $100,000 online yearly. Back then, our business was all about selling text links. Paid advertising was a very profitable niche… until Google decided it’s not. In 2012, Google launched a series of animal updates (Panda, Penguins, etc.) and directed their rage against financial websites among other things.
Starting in 2013, the business had dried up and we were back making about 35K to 40K. It’s not bad income, but once you pay your expenses, taxes and split the remainder in two, it wasn’t great either. During that time, my partner’s first child turned 1 andmy third one celebrated his 1st birthday just a few month before . We kind of lost interest in working hard on our sites. It was just a nice side gig, nothing more.
Then, during the summer of 2014, we decided we would leave everything behind to travel for 12 months. We set our departure date for June 2016 (because you can’t achieve anything if you don’t create a timeline first). After a few months working on the project toward the end of 2014, it was time to work on my online business to generate sufficient income to support this trip.
In the beginning of 2015, I started working seriously on growing my online business. While I was working full-time at a very demanding job (private banker), I was also working on my own project between 10pm and 2am about 3 times per week. I had a very specific goal in mind: financing 100% of my trip with my online income. My partner was generous enough to give me his portion of the revenue to help pay for this adventure. The following chart shows my gross online revenue since January 2015:
As you can see, it took me about 8 months to start seeing the fruits of my labor. In September 2015, as summer vacation ended, the business started to seriously pick-up some steam. It literally created a wave of income increasing significantly until I reached January and launched my first successfully promotion for Dividend Stocks Rock. I continued my efforts until I left in June 2016. As you can see, the period between September 2015 and June 2016 was the most profitable. We finished 2016 with
Then, the wave continued for a while and I was even able to do a small promo in January 2017. It wasn’t as successful, mainly because the original promo (a three-way partnership) failed on December 12th and the launch date was set for January 1st. It gave me about 3 weeks to work something out while we were hosting my mother for Christmas in Costa Rica and my sister-in-law’s family during this time.
I left Costa Rica on February 26th for another chapter of my adventure on the road. The trip was fantastic, but working in a RV on the beach is not exactly the most efficient way to build a business. This is how the wave of income that supported most of my trip slowly died during the last months.
How April, May & June Went
In April 2016, we made $4,740, then in May 2016 we made $4,028 and in June 2016, $4,503. We were pretty much back to early-2015 figures. The good news is that expenses were under control. After paying a yearly fee for our servers and another for our investment tool (Ycharts), our cost of operations has been a lot lower and manageable. I will not detail those three months as it was pretty much the same thing:
- No additional growth coming from our membership website
- 40% to 50% of our revenue was coming from paid advertising
- No strategies were put in place to change anything
I thought it was important to highlight that when you do nothing, nothing happens. Most people think that because you work online or build a passive income, everything comes easy. Well, it doesn’t. You can definitely build a solid income source, but it remains true that if you don’t work to grow your business, the wave will only last so long.
Preparing the next wave
As I mentioned last week, we had our first team meeting at the beginning of July. This meeting occurred a few days after I had my first monthly meeting with my partner. During this little one-on-one, we set goals and tasks to be achieved for the following 30 days. As we are set to grow fast, it’s important to keep track of where we go regularly. The point is to set up a very short list of items to accomplish. Here’s what my list looked like:
- Write a total 46 articles for the month (to be split among our blogs, guest posts and paid writing)
- Get Facebook pages working for our main blogs
- Create a new portfolio for our membership site
- Start answering questions on Quora (part of our marketing plan)
- Learn how to run a webinar
- Analyze our competition and note 3 key points they do and we don’t
- Write a contract of business with my partner (we own 2 separate corporations right now)
Staring on July 4th, I was working full-time on my websites. In just 10 days, I can already see a difference and I can tell the next wave is coming. Thank you for following me in this journey. I believe it’s going to be epic!