Greetings! My name is Bjork.
I am Lindsay’s husband and the head computer surgeon here at Pinch of Yum.
Starting in August of 2011 Lindsay and I decided to share our journey in monetizing a blog. Our first month’s income totaled $21.97.
Our hope with these monthly income reports is to provide some insight so you know what’s working and not working when it comes to monetizing a blog.
We both work full-time, so any income you see created from this blog is a result of time spent outside of the regular 9-5.
Here’s the breakdown of March’s income from Pinch of Yum:
Grand Total: $1,024.53
NOTE: The above income report doesn’t include sales from Lindsay’s eBook, Tasty Food Photography. We’re really excited to talk about the details of the book, but we’ll be waiting until next month’s report to do so.
Things we learned in March
Moving on Up
The time finally came to move Pinch of Yum from a shared hosting account to a virtual private server (VPS). I can feel your eyes glazing over already. Stick with me. This will be important to know when (not if) your blog starts to get a decent amount of traffic.
Think of it like this: A shared hosting account is like an apartment. It’s perfect for when you’re just getting started because it’s small and affordable. You can’t throw huge parties or have lots of people over, but you can comfortably keep all your stuff there and have friends over to visit. We recommend Bluehost for shared hosting.
A virtual private server is like renting the entire floor of an apartment building. It’s more expensive, but it’s spacious and you can host lots of guests. It’s great because you don’t have to worry about things being too crowded. We use Media Temple for Pinch of Yum’s VPS.
We decided to pull the plug completely on Foodie Blogroll and it proved to be a good decision. In fact, on April 3rd we made more from AdSense in a day ($116.26) then we did with Foodie Blogroll in a month.
What’s the difference between AdSense and Foodie Blogroll? The most obvious difference is that AdSense pays a certain amount every time someone clicks on an ad, while Foodie Blogroll pays a certain amount every 1,000 page views that your blog gets. AdSense, for the most part, serves ads that are pretty relevant to your readers. Google, in their crazy-smart-scientist-computer-people ways, has created a script that looks through your website content and offers ads based on what that content is about. That’s a good thing, because the more relevant the ads, the more likely that someone will click on them. And every time someone clicks on an ad, you get paid.
Here’s a one-minute video from a Google Dude explaining AdSense:
Tips and Takeaways
Always experiment. It’s hard to change up something that seems to be working, but we’ve found it to be rewarding to constantly change and tinker in certain areas. Lindsay and I were both amazed when the blog made $75 in a month with Foodie Blogroll (we celebrated by going out to eat) :). It’s a good thing we decided to experiment though, as we found Google AdSense to be much more lucrative.
The majority of income from Pinch of Yum is affiliate related income. If you’re not familiar with the term affiliate I explain it here in October’s post. One of the hard things with a food blog is that there aren’t that many online affiliate products that fit well with the food blog niche.
This was one of the reasons we decided to write Tasty Food Photography. We wanted to create a product that fits well into the niche that Pinch of Yum is in (a food photography and recipe blog).
For those of you that are interested, Tasty Food Photography has an official affiliate program that offers a 50% commission. We’re excited to open it up to the food blogger world to see what happens. Click here if you’re interested in signing up for the Tasty Food Photography affiliate program.
Keep on keepin’ on
This might be the most important tip. Keep at it! The internet is altogether the fastest and slowest creation there is. You can have a blog up and running in an hour, but it takes months and months and month and post after post after post until you get a decent flow of traffic coming to your site. Keep it up! If you stick with it you’ll see growth.
In case you’re interested, this month’s income will be used to help fund our summer trip to the Children’s Shelter of Cebu, and after this point, we will continue to use just a portion of the earnings from Pinch of Yum to support this incredible ministry. CSC is an orphanage in the Philippines where Lindsay’s three youngest siblings lived for several years before being adopted to the United States. You can read more about this awesome organization here.