My Passive Income Report [May 2013]
May, unfortunately, was my first “whole” month where my top income sources were down significantly. The drop started in April (where only the early part of the month performed well), and probably hit its bottom in May (I hope!).
With that said, I’ve got a new project in the works that I’m excited about, to go along with a new outlook on productivity that I think will pay off over the next few months.
Let’s get to it.
A Brief Overview of May
May was nice and relaxing, as my girlfriend and I spent about a week visiting San Francisco. It was our first time traveling there, and we both found SF to be an awesome city. Lots of good food, good sights, and overall a great city to walk around.
There was a mix of good and bad in May, and aside from the drop in income, I think the the good is going to ultimately beat out the bad. Thanks to this 31-day challenge I set up for myself (and I’m still in the middle of it), I’ve got a new niche site in the works that I have high hopes for.
In other news, which I’ll explain below, I think writing for Squidoo in general is dead. It’s unfortunate, but I’m glad it happened before I started relying on it as a significant income stream. I’m still somewhat struggling to figure out where my next big online income stream will come from, but I think it’s important to take things slow and really just focus on one project at time.
May Income Report
As I wrote about in last month’s income report, several of my Squidoo lenses were unpublished and locked, and for all intents and purposes, they’re gone. No warnings and no realistic opportunities to correct whatever was wrong with them.
Fortunately for me, Squidoo was not yet a large source of my income (although I did recently have a $100+ month there before all this craziness began). Other people weren’t as fortunate, as many have unexpectedly found themselves with drastic drops in income due to having their Squidoo lenses unfairly locked.
As I mentioned in the past, there most certainly are lenses that are lower quality and deserve to be locked (and I’ll admit that a few of mine probably fell in that category). However, evidence suggests that there were a substantial number of high quality (or at least, not low quality) lenses that were locked as well. The public outrage on Squidoo’s forums seems to be endless.
Anyway, I will probably continue to earn a few dollars here and there assuming no more lenses are locked, but I’ve decided not to put any more effort into Squidoo.
Here’s a summary of all my article-related income for May:
- Amazon: $6.27
- Revenue Sharing: $1.67
- Revenue Sharing: $10.40
Total Article Writing Income: $18.34
Lending Club, as I mention each month, is one of my favorite online passive income sources, because I believe it’s my only truly passive income source. What I mean by this is, once you select your investments (which doesn’t take more than a few minutes), you can simply sit back and collect the monthly payments which include a repayment of your initial investment + interest.
If you are unfamiliar with Lending Club, however, you should read my post that explains exactly how I make money with Lending Club (including my investment strategy) that I posted a couple months ago.
For the third straight month, my net annualized return (or interest %) grew, so I’m happy to be back on track here. I’m now invested in 170 loans (+4 from April) and my net annualized return is 5.58% (+.10% from April).
Now that I’ve began investing in some higher risk loans (while still doing the necessary analysis to make sure that the loan is still reasonable and worth the risk), I’m starting to see the payoff.
If you’re interested in trying Lending Club, you can sign up with this link and get a free account. I am an affiliate for Lending Club, so if you have any questions about it, I’d be more than happy to answer them in the comments (or feel free to contact me by e-mail).
If you’re unsure whether this type of investing is right for you, you can start with $25 and build from there. I do want to re-emphasize that to really benefit from this form of passive income, you need to make several $25 investments (or larger if you’d prefer) not only to earn more interest, but to diversify as well. One or two $25 investments won’t really get you anywhere.
A couple months ago, I also began investing with Prosper.com, which is another social lending platform very similar to Lending Club.
Because the 4 loans I invested in with my initial $100 deposit didn’t fully fund until mid-May, I’m not going to receive my first repayments until probably sometime in June. Once I begin receiving payments, I’ll definitely report my net annualized return % here!
Here’s a little preview of the loans I’m invested in so far (and you can see the interest rate of each):
Although most of my old niche sites that I built 1-2 years ago have “died off” (for various reasons), I have a new niche site in the works that I’m excited about. It’s monetized with Amazon, and I really like the keyword I selected.
I was debating on whether I should make a public case study out of it, but for right now, I’m going to keep it private. On multiple occasions, I know other bloggers (Spencer for example) who have made a niche site public and have seen copycats emerge once the site becomes successful.
I have no problem sharing everything I learn, through my successes and/or failures, but I’d like to get one successful niche site under my belt before opening it up to competition.
Note: The new niche site isn’t receiving traffic yet, so there haven’t been any earnings for it.
- Amazon: $5.52
- Media.net: $0.08
- Chitika: $0.00
- InfoLinks: $0.00
- Commission Junction: $0.00
- Total: $5.60
Authority Site #1 (Not Revealed)
This site is still inactive (in terms of me working on it), but continues to earn a little bit of money.
- Media.net: $0.99
Authority Site #2 (Slow Carb Diet Experiments)
Not a lot of work done on this site in the last month (mainly due to the new niche site I’m focused on), but I will definitely get back to this site at some point soon.
- Amazon: $4.19
- Media.net: $0.32
- Total: $4.51
Total Authority Site Earnings: $5.50
Here’s the breakdown for affiliate and other income earned during May. [Note: This income comes from other sites not discussed/listed above, including affiliate sales generated through this blog.]
- CashCrate: $162.11 (read my review here)
- ClickBank: $22.33
- Commission Junction: $186.00
- PayDotCom: $37.00
- Ebates: $20.00
- SEOMoz: $0.00 (read my write-up here)
- Market Samurai: $48.50
- TweetAdder: $0.00
- Aweber: $11.70
- Other misc.: $0.00
Total Misc. Affiliate Earnings for May: $487.64
Here’s a summary of May’s earnings, organized by project/challenge:
- Article Writing: $18.34
- Amazon & “AdSense” Niche Sites: $5.60
- Authority Websites: $5.50
- Misc. Affiliate Income: $487.64
Grand Total for May: $517.08 (-$449.94 from April)
Unfortunately, it’s my second consecutive down month, and hopefully, this is the bottom. I’m going to continue my focus on one project at a time, so that over the next few months, I’ll have a few new sources of passive income.
Popular Blog Posts
These were my top 5 most popular blog posts in May based on number of views:
How did May go for you? Let’s hear about it in the comments!
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