Here we go! Food blog income report numba 2! I received an overwhelmingly positive response to my May 2019 Food Blog Income Report that I decided to make this a regular thing. June was a very strong month for me, especially since Summer is pretty slow for food bloggers, so I can’t wait to share what a success it was!
How I’m able to grow my food blog
If you missed my first food blog report, I explain how long I’ve been blogging and how I pick and choose the work that I do. I still work a full time job so it’s important to prioritize my projects to get the most out of Butternut Bakery.
One of the most common responses from that post is how others feel as if they’ve been slacking…although that was accompanied with how much the post inspired them with is fantastic! That’s exactly what I was hoping for.
But I’d like to briefly touch on that feeling of not doing enough. To that I say, go at your own pace as we’re ALL in completely different situations. For me, I’m in a hurry. I’m in a hurry to pay off my student debt, I’m in a hurry to quit my full time job, and I’m in a hurry to grow Butternut Bakery to what I know it could be.
To be honest, I don’t have a super busy social life and I don’t live close to my family which leaves me with a lot of free time. Not only that, but Nick (my boyfriend) is also growing HIS career at the same time as I am. We’re both so busy working that we’re willing to sacrifice some date nights and vacations right now in order to build the flexible life we want.
That sounds pretty sad typing it out and reading it over, but it’s what works for me. I’m happy spending my time on the blog. Nick and I are happy supporting each other, knowing that all this hustling is temporary. Ok, is anyone else sick of the word “hustle”?
Either way, I’m not some super blogger who can do it all. I’ve sacrificed a lot of my time to spend it all here and if that’s something you’re not comfortable with, that’s fine! But please don’t compare yourself to me, I’m just a major introvert who loves nothing more than staying in and taking pictures of food.
So now that I’ve made myself sound like a COMPLETE loser, let’s move on to the numbers, shall we?
Since I started my WordPress blog in June of 2017, we get to see just how much Butternut Bakery has grown in one year. And holy cow has it been a year! I was floored but how much traffic came in this month. My fresh strawberry sheet cake has given me a huge boost as it’s been shared on both The Kitchn and Buzzfeed.
But, record scratch, I thought I had the full month of June but it looks like I started it on June 19th. So we don’t have a full month but you can at least see the very beginning stages of the blog. I went from about 50-80 users a day to now 2,000-4,000.
I attribute a lot of this growth to SEO and Pinterest. When I first started my blog, I didn’t even know what SEO was. I just made a recipe, wrote a couple paragraphs, and posted it. Now, I spend a ton more time researching keywords and writing a full length post.
It also wasn’t until a few months after I started my blog that I dove into Pinterest. This is a slow build, along with SEO, so you can expect to see your work pay off months down the line. It’s great to see that mine finally has!
But Pinterest still needs some work. It’s not where I’d like it to be and I’m just kind of figuring it out as I go. I’ve considered hiring this out which I might do in the coming months.
Top 5 Recipe Posts for June 2019
- Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
- Fresh Strawberry Cake
- Chewy Sugar Cookies
- Edible Brownie Batter Cookie Dough
- Cookie Dough Cake
- Mediavine (my ad network) – $1,131.91 at $13.50 RPM
- Sponsored Content – $4,600.00
- Freelance Photography – $1,420.00
- Amazon Affiliate – $22.76
- Kickbooster (Replica Surfaces Affiliate) – $27.99
TOTAL INCOME – $7,202.66
This has been my highest earning month, both overall and in ad revenue. I mentioned this in my last report, but this is something I’ve really been trying to grow. Building up my traffic and ad revenue is one of my primary goals for Butternut Bakery.
I also landed a strong 3 month partnership with a brand that I love. This is the reason for the slight boost in my sponsorship revenue. I try to book multiple sponsorships for a single brand because the cold-emailing process can be very time consuming. The less people I have to reach out to, the better! Especially when I’m still a one woman show. Plus, I often have many ideas for these partnerships and with multiple posts, I get to do it all.
- Baking Supplies – $192.02
- Sitelock – $50.00
- Mailchimp – $35.00
- Bluehost – $14.99
- Adobe Photography Plan – $10.78
TOTAL EXPENSES – $302.79
Baking supplies include any ingredients I need for my recipes. This usually stays around $200 each month.
Sitelock is what I use to keep my site safe and secure. They’re constantly monitoring my traffic and scanning my site for any weaknesses. I haven’t had a single issue since working with them!
Mailchimp is what I use for my email list and newsletters. The larger my list gets, the higher the monthly cost is. Last month it was $50 but I have since cleared out my list which dropped my monthly cost to $35. By clearing, I mean I delete any users who have not opened any of my past 5 emails. An email list is all about quality, not quantity.
Bluehost is the platform that hosts my website. I haven’t had any issues with it although as my site gains more traffic, I may think about switching to more robust service.
This Adobe Photography plan is really all I need for my editing software. It gives me Lightroom and Photoshop.
NET INCOME: $6,899.87
keeping it simple
Since I still work full time (I know, the redundancy) I like to keep my streams of income very simple. There are MANY other ways to make money with a food blog and I definitely want to explore those options but for right now, this is my threshold. It’s important to know your limits to avoid burnout…I’ve been there and it isn’t fun.
And remember, please do not turn this into a comparison game! It’s so easy to fall into that trap when numbers are involved. These reports are to be used as a tool and resource. Get inspired. Take action. And grow!
Jo Thrasher • Jo Eats says
These are so inspiring, thanks for being so transparent about everything. And nothing wrong with staying in and working on your dream, lady. You do you!
Thank you so much Jo! I’m seriously so happy to hear that…and that I don’t actually sound like a complete loser
Jennifer Preston says
I have been loving your income and traffic reports! I truly find them so inspiring, it makes me want to work harder on my blog than ever before. And I think it’s awesome that you’re putting your free time to such good use–it’ll all be SO worth it in the end!!
Thank you so much! That’s all I can hope for when sharing these!
Thanks for sharing, Jenna! & congratulations on an amazing June! It’s so helpful to see the numbers. I totally can relate with the introvert life and being content staying home and snapping pics and working on your blog. Plus being away from family and friends. I feel like I’m in the same situation!
Good thing we’re surrounded by our fellow bloggers! Otherwise it would feel VERY isolating. Thank you for following along!!
This is definitely where I go to be inspired. My favorite blog post about income by far! I have 2 kids so I’d love to be working on my blog all day but for me it’s balancing working on it all night and actually getting sleep ???? so i love to see that you keep it simple and still find success! Awesome job!
Thanks so much!! I like to share some realness to balance out all the technicality of blogging. It’s so hard to find that balance as it so ingrained into your life as opposed to a job you go to every day. I too had those sleepless nights..minus the kids…but I eventually just stopped. I gave myself a curfew to only work up to a certain time. That has helped a lot!
Thanks for sharing this, Jenna! You already answered some questions I had in mind. One of them is how to keep a social life while working full time and focusing on blogging and photography at the same time 🙂 Go “stay in and do anything-blog-related” team!!
Congrats on this amazing month! You deserved it for all the effort you are putting into this.
Katie @ Katiebird Bakes says
Jenna, you never fail to inspire me with both your recipes and these income posts! I’m amazed at what you’ve been able to accomplish in such a short time and with a full time job. This definitely does make me feel like I’m slacking but in a good, get-your-butt-in-gear way! Keep up the hard work my dear!
Thank you so much Katie!! I’m glad that’s what you can takeaway from this 🙂
Congratulations on those June numbers! As a new subscriber, I’m glad to know I was part of that. I am neither a blogger or baker but I’m a reader and am fascinated with the analytics! I was born w/o a cooking or baking gene and it does not come natural to me. Nothing gives me more pleasure, though, than feeding friends and family something special so I’m always trying new recipes. No matter how you describe your life situation, loser would never come to mind. Kudos for having a vision and the passion to see it through! Sharing the details to inspire others is the icing on the cake, haha! I really enjoy your blog. Thank you!
Thank you so much Peggy! As long as it makes you happy and it tastes good, then who cares how it turns out. You just gotta love the process 🙂 And thank you again for your kind words…this really made my day!
Lawrence Heath says
I love your income report and I am inspired. I will learn a lot by following your blog and using Food Blogger Pro.
I have started making my own seasoning and sauce for resale under permit with my state Department of Agriculture and I would love to send you samples for you to kick the tires on it and if you like them to talk about an affiliate plan to help you income reach your income target.
I am working with a graphic artist on upgrading my packaging now.