My first post of 2012 was an update on the progress the blog had made since inception, as well as a disclosure about the blog's income. I'll continue that tradition with this post.
Most of you never read that post, which is pretty cool, because it means the readership of this blog has dramatically increased. A blog is nothing without readers and interacting with you is the part of blogging that I enjoy most. Thank you for all your wonderful emails and comments, and especially for sharing the blog with others. Almost all of the growth this site has seen has been through word of mouth. A large percentage of my posts come directly from questions you ask, and those questions help the blog stay relevant to its readers.
134 posts were added to the blog this year, most by me, but many of the best ones were by guest posters just like you sharing their ideas and experiences.The most popular post was 8 Reasons to Avoid Whole Life Insurance. Your productivity has also been outstanding- there are now over 2400 comments on the site, not counting the 10,716 Spam comments!
A year ago this blog was being read by 5500 people per month (now 23,500) and 21,000 pages were viewed per month (now 85,000.) 163 were following the RSS Feed (now 729) and nearly no one was following via Twitter or reading the monthly newsletter (now 134 and 599 respectively.) In the last year a grand total of 165K separate people visited the site, viewing over 764K pages. Almost all of you are Americans, but there are a few from Canada, the UK, India, and Germany as well. 131 outside websites link here, five times as many as a year ago.
From the beginning, I decided this was going to be a “for-profit” website, and I’m sure you’ve noticed the ads. (In fact, I was told this evening one popped up through Google Ads from a medical malpractice firm- sorry about that, I didn't approve it.) Last year the blog generated about $1000 in income, although it didn't actually realize a profit thanks to a few business expenses. My goal for this year was to gross $5000 in income, a goal I made. Although I'm still working on maximizing my business expenses, it looks like I'm going to be paying some taxes on what the blog made this year. The only thing worse than having to pay taxes, of course, being not having to pay taxes. Full disclosure to you, the reader, of my financial conflicts of interest is important to me. I want you to know where my money comes from so you can evaluate the information on the site in that context.
- Google ads $1425.62
- Amazon affiliate program $801.69
- Other affiliate programs $1321.29
- Privately placed ads $4536
- Writing/Speaking Fees $800
- Other Income $55
- Total $8939.60
- Total $2190.27
I was pretty excited to add all that up tonight. Not only did I meet my goal for the year, but the total blog income for the year added up to a significant chunk of money. The hourly rate still isn't much, since I spend way too much time working on the site, especially the content, but it's nice to see something for my efforts. My goal for next year is $12K in profit, but more importantly, I hope the info found here will be worth that much or more to each of my regular readers.
What's Coming Up
I plan to continue the ever-popular Friday Q&A series. Quality guest posts are becoming more and more common, so expect to see more of those. I'll also continue the military series and the back to basics series. I've decided to stick with the newsletter, at least for another year, as it gives me a chance to interact with readers in a little bit of a different way. If you haven't yet signed up for it, please do so. It includes content not found anywhere on the site, and it's just as free to you as everything else here. I'm also hoping to spread the message of The White Coat Investor through word of mouth, as well as more mainstream publications in the next year. I'll be submitting pieces to journals such as Medical Economics and Ophthalmology Business. Have a great new year!