August 2016 Online Income Report – $9,604.90

It’s time to review my online income report from last month. This report only includes income I received from the month of August. If I haven’t received the money, then I don’t put it in this income report. This is the best way for me to track how much money I am making on a monthly basis. 

While this is the best way for me to track my income, it’s also an annoying method. I say this every month, but a good amount of my income is paid out anywhere from 30-90 days after the work is done. 

For example, my affiliate income was at an all time high even though my traffic was down. The downside? Until I actually receive the income in my bank account, I can’t count it. Instead, it takes about 60 days to report on this. Oh well, I guess I can share in two months 😉 Do you get my frustration?

So even though I am sharing this income report for August, only some of the income is actually from August and the rest of my income was earned in May and June.


Can you believe August was my tenth month freelancing full time?! Last summer I was still at my day job working a million hours a week. Starting this blog has changed my life, it’s just crazy!

Here’s a recap of some of my online income reports:



Last month I made over $9,600 from my blog. If you want to start a blog and start making money, I'm sharing how I've been earning income for the past year. If your goal is to blog full full time or part time, you are going to want to read this post!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure for more info.



  • $795.95 Ad revenue
  • $1,250 Partnerships/Sponsorships
  • $3,711.95 Affiliate Income
  • $1,947 Courses + products
  • $1,900 Freelancing

GRAND TOTAL: $9,604.90

This month was better than I thought it would be. It turns out I am horrible about tracking income. I had a couple surprises again this month where I forgot about payments and when they showed up in my PayPal account, I was like where did this money come from?! Let’s go on a vacation! (clearly, I’m not the best personal finance blogger, ha!)

Tracking income

I’ve started using my Simplified Planner to record every sale, credit, etc. I earn on a weekly basis. It’s a little challenging and time consuming to track income, but once a week for about 30 minutes I just go through some of my accounts and write things down. I’ve tried using online programs to track my income, but I’m a paper person when it comes to these kinds of things. 

The only thing I’m not tracking weekly is my ad income because it just annoys me to do that. But now that I think about it and am typing this post, maybe I should? And come to think of it, I just remembered that I don’t track a couple smaller affiliate programs either. Ugh, I’m bad at this. No wonder I end up with surprise payments each month, ha! 

Other than that, I’m not sure how to track income. Technically, some of this is earned income right away from my courses and product, and some of this is just income that I won’t receive until a couple months down the road. 

Either way, it’s helping me become more aware of how much I’m potentially earning each week. I really want to work on having a weekly paycheck “snapshot” so I can gauge things. 

Income breakdown

This income amount is the grand total before I deduct taxes. Right now I am putting away 30% of each paycheck I receive. If I break this down into sections of income, it looks like this:

  • 12% freelance income
  • 88% in ad income, brands/sponsorships, products, affiliate income

If you want to keep track of your online income (which I highly recommend) check out Freshbooks! It’s what I’ve used to track business income, expenses, invoice clients, and more. Click here to learn more about Freshbooks.

Here’s a breakdown of the past several months so you can see how I’ve worked from being more freelance driven to income coming directly from my own brand/blog. Last December my freelance income made up 85% of my total income. This past August, only 12% if my income was freelance based. 


Income Transition



My freelancing income is about 50% less than previous months! My goal has always been to have more passive income than freelance income. Luckily, I timed things right. My affiliate income and blog income were increasing over the summer as my freelancing income was decreasing. 

Since I started freelancing, I’ve always intentionally kept my hours part time so I could grow my blog. Over the past few months, I’ve been slowly breaking up with my freelance clients so I could focus on blog growth, creating and promoting courses and various projects geared towards larger audiences. Breaking up is so hard! I get sad about it, even if it is business and not supposed to be personal. 

Right now, my freelance services are limited. I even took down my Hire Me page a couple months ago, but continue to receive requests every week from potential clients. Presently I offer Pinterest consulting as well as one-off projects, like creating images for a website. These are less time consuming for me and I really enjoy it, so it’s a win-win. 


Overall, income from my courses is down. I didn’t do any promoting for either course in August and it shows. I knew this would go down as I took time off for vacations and wanted a break, ha! 

It is awesome that I was able to make money from my courses without doing anything thanks to email funnels or direct traffic, but it also shows me that I need to keep up with promoting if I want to make more income from this source of revenue. Fortunately, I have plans for the next four months to promote my courses again!  

Side Hustle to Success

At the end of January, I launched my book about side hustling. I have done very little promotion of this book and still get sales. I converted this book into a course and did a soft launch this summer to test it out. I’m pretty happy with the results and plan to promote it harder this fall. You can check out the course here if you are interested in making extra income on the side.

Pinterest Presence

At the end of April, I launched my Pinterest Presence course. I share exactly how I run my Pinterest management services, but the course allows students to go at their own pace.

The main reason I created the course was because I’m not able to assist every client that wants to hire me and this is the next best thing. In the Pinterest Presence course, I share exactly how I went from 1,000 page views a month to 160,000 page views a month and how Pinterest drives in 90% of my traffic each month.

I am really happy with the outcome of this course as well! There’s over four hours of video included, cheat sheets, downloads, tutorials – basically everything someone could need to rock Pinterest. If you have yet to utilize Pinterest and also need to get more traffic to your website, you can check out the course here.

Pinterest Pin templates

Pinterest Pin templatesI receive a lot of emails from readers who struggle with designing pins for Pinterest.

Many readers have told me it can take them twenty minutes or more to create one Pinterest pin. That’s way too long to spend on designing one pin!

So the solution was easy:

  • I created a dozen Pinterest pin templates that are fully customizable that everyone can use! 
  • I selected twelve different Pinterest pin templates that have converted really well. If you spend time on Pinterest, you will notice certain Pinterest pin trends and these all work perfectly! 
  • When someone purchases the templates, they also receive a video I made with some tips on making the pin templates custom to their blog, as well as a video on how to upload custom fonts.

The best part is someone can now create a Pinterest pin in a matter of a few minutes. This is a major time saver and one less thing a blogger has to worry about! You can learn more about the Pinterest pin templates here. 

Monthly Expenses

These are my August expenses:

  • $113 VA work
  • $13.92 PayPal fees
  • $9.95 FreshBooks – I used the free 30 day trial and LOVED FreshBooks. I use the cheapest monthly plan and it’s seriously saving me so much money each month when I invoice clients. I don’t know why I didn’t do this several months ago? When I think about how much money I could have saved, I get so annoyed, ha! Seriously, if you are a freelancer and you use PayPal to invoice clients – STOP. Switch to FreshBooks. You will pay like 50 cents per transaction as opposed to 3-4% in PayPal fees. That’s crazy!
  • $99 Teachable 
  • $213.05 Affiliates 


This month my expenses were around 6% of my budget. I try to take care of a lot of things on my own so I don’t have to outsource. I’m ok with all my expenses listed above and wouldn’t really do anything different. Since I’ve been only working part time hours, it’s definitely easy for me to do the majority of the work! 

  • Using ConvertKit and LeadPages together has been amazing. I’ve created some really great newsletters, course sequences, funnels and sign up forms with ConvertKit. LeadPages has skyrocketed my email subscriber list and what I use for hosting webinars. I don’t include LeadPages in every income report as an expense because I pay it quarterly. 
  • I don’t include Tailwind or Bluehost in these expenses as I have prepaid for the year. Tailwind is the scheduler I use when I do all my pinning on Pinterest. 

Income report from 12 months ago

Last August, I made over $700 from my blog while working full time at my day job. I thought it would be fun to compare numbers from last August and this past August. 

Last month I made over $9,600 from my blog, which is crazy! I'm sharing my entire journey of blogging and how much my blog income has changed in one year. If you are thinking about starting a blog or are not sure how to increase your blog income, learn how I changed my strategy to increase my blog income. I made $705 in freelance income last August. This past month I made $1,200. Ahh, those numbers seem so close yet don’t tell the whole story.

Over the past twelve months, I made $31,198 from freelance income.

WTF?! That’s my first time adding it all up and that’s crazy. Geez, now that I’ve seen that number maybe I should continue my freelance services.

I made $35 in affiliate income last August. This past month I made over $4,400. I still need to add up my last 12 months of affiliate income, so maybe I need to do a blog post on numbers and income in general. Clearly, I am not tracking individual stats and should be! 

I had no other income from my blog last August. This past month I relied on five different sources of revenue to earn over $9,600 in online income. Definitely makes a difference!

One of the biggest things I’ve noticed is what a difference there is with my time management.

When I first started my blog, I was at my full time job. Every waking moment outside of my full time job was spent working on my website. In the beginning, I easily spent anywhere from two to four hours a day on my blog for the first several months. Not kidding! This was mostly because I had no idea what I was doing, testing out things, growing, etc.

Today things are a little more streamline and I have a really good grasp on things. This summer I definitely slowed down on things and cut down my hours I was working, but now I’m already gearing back up and plan on working twice as much as I did over the summer.

The bottom line is if you have a new blog, be prepared to put a lot of time into it and realize that you probably won’t make a lot of money right away. I am total proof that if you stick with it, anything is possible. If you had told me a year ago what my life would be like now, I probably would have rolled my eyes at you and said ok, ha! 

If you haven’t started a blog yet, I wrote this personal post about why you should stop being scared to start a blog and just go for it. I receive a lot of emails from readers telling me how nervous they are to start a blog and how much prep work they are doing to launch. Stop stressing – you can do this! 

If you are thinking about starting a blog, this tutorial will help you start a blog today. You’ll also get a FREE domain name for a year! I was able to quit my job and blog full time, all within my first year of blogging. I am really glad I took a chance and started a blog! I invested around $100 to start my blog using Bluehost, and I made $13,000 in 6 months of blogging. That’s the best return of investment ever! 

If you are a blogger, what are you doing to prep for fall? 

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  1. Congrats on an amazing month! Just letting you know I featured your blog on an income report roundup I did recently. 🙂

  2. You go, girl! It is so nice to see your breakdown – I love the freelancing vs blog income pie graphs. Isn’t passive income crazy awesome? So happy to see your hard work paying off.

  3. I’d love to know more about how you offer your Pinterest management services. Is this part of the Pinterest Presence course? Like, do you approach clients or did they approach you, what do you offer as part of your services or packages? All of that would be so interesting to learn!

  4. Catherine says:

    How did you start out doing affiliate marketing? Did companies come to you?

  5. Catherine Treme says:

    Hi Kristen!

    I’m so inspired by you that I have started creating blog posts myself. I’m so over the 9-5 grind, to were I’m creating my own website. I’ve almost got the recommended 35-50 posts before the site is launched. I’m curious though, how many hours are you putting (then versus now) in between the blog, products, freelancing, courses and well everything else that it takes to make this AMAZING income that your making now?

  6. Great report! I can’t wait to decrease my freelancing hours so I can focus more on blogging. Keep up the good work!

  7. Wow, you are killing it! Congratulations, super inspiring! Affiliate income is where it’s at, it seems! I’m planning on taking your pinterest course in the future, too!

  8. This is really inspiring! My husband and I have been writing our blog for 8 months now and we always feel like we are working so hard and see zero results. In the beginning we had no idea what we were doing, but we have been improving everyday. We hope some day that we can post a blog income report with actual income, haha! Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

    1. Thanks Emily! Make sure you are diversifying your sources of income – don’t just rely on ads, which is a mistake I made in the beginning. Once I added affiliate links and created a resource page for some of my favorite things I use, I started to see results! The more income streams you have, the better chance you have of earning income from different sources 🙂

  9. Awesome job! I’ve been at it a few months (of consistently posting/promoting) but articles like these are SUPER motivating. $10K/month, that’s amazing. Love the emphasis of passive income taking up more time than freelancing! Very impressive, keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks! I definitely have worked equally as hard on passive income/courses just as much as freelance income the past several months and it’s paying off!

      1. Amazing! Where did you use to do the majority of your freelancing previously?

        1. I started my own Pinterest management company and still manage various Pinterest accounts 🙂

  10. Awesome job, Kristin! I love seeing your blogging and freelancing evolve! And I’m really loving the new layout and feel of your site!

    1. Thanks so much Latoya 🙂

  11. Wow. What you’ve done in one year is so inspiring. 🙂

  12. Wow, it’s amazing to see how you went from three figures to almost five in just a year. I need to start working more on my course ideas. That seems to be where your income has taken off.

    1. Yes! Course income (and previously ebook income) has been huge for me. Affiliate income was something that I didn’t start focusing on until earlier this year and it’s also turning into a huge resource for me!

  13. Loved your blog post! It must feel so amazing see what you earned a year ago compared to today. I have just started and it feels really slow going but I will keep at it and hope one day that I can do a post like this in retrospect!

    1. It’s so weird to be able to go back a full year and see where I am today. Blogging was definitely much harder in the beginning and when I had a full time job- I was so stressed out!! Good luck with your blog 🙂

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