It’s been ages since we did our last income report, so we thought we’d check in with our stats, income and income streams for October 2018. We’re also going to talk about what we’ve been up to behind the scenes and the what prompted us to write this report! You can also check out our previous reports here.
It’s been a whole year since we did our last income report!
Work kind of got on top of us, and whilst we love writing these reports and sharing them with you guys, they take so much time that we kept putting them off. Before we knew it, it had been a year. How does time fly so fast!
What really pushed us into action for this one was that October 2018 was a a record month for us, in terms of pages views, ad revenue and overall revenue. See more on this below.
We’re so excited that Kitchen Sanctuary is continuing to grow, and we want to say thank you to you guys for reading. It means the world to us that we can do what we love and continue to create our favourite recipes.
What’s been going on since our last report in October 2017?
If feels like we haven’t stopped all year! Chris has been working full time with me for over a year now and we’ve settled into a nice routine – which means we’ve figured out exactly what our roles are, and try to use our strengths in the best way.
Some of the main things we’ve focused on have been:
- SEO or search engine optimisation. This is something we do to try to improve our rankings in google search results.
We had an audit with SEO specialist Casey Markee in March and have been putting all of his advice into practise since. We’ve done a lot, but have mostly focused on updating old posts and adding information that google likes to see in our recipe cards. The results have been amazing – with an increase in google traffic of 252% compared to the same time period last year:
- I got a book deal!!! I’m so excited to be working with Page Street Publishing, and I’ve been working hard since the Summer to create and photograph recipes for the book. It will be out around Spring 2019, but I’ll post about it again nearer the time.
- We’ve continued to work with Neff again all year. You can check out some of the recipes videos we’ve done for them in their Facebook page.
- I was also up on stage again at the Big Feastival with Neff with the lovely Jane from The Hedgecombers. We had a cook-off – making our version of bread pudding with a twist. I was so chuffed to be crowned the winner! Jane’s was so delicious too!
- We’ve spent a lot of time working on videos this year – just check out the Kitchen Sanctuary Instagram feed for the mini versions of some of the vids we’ve been making.
- The kids have also been in a few of our videos, and Gracey even did one of her own!
- We’ve done A LOT LESS brand work during 2018 compared to 2017. I think a big part of this is because we’ve been so busy, we’ve barely had time to reach out to any brands. We’ve worked with some who have approached us, but have turned down a fair bit of work too. Either due to the product not being a good fit for us or our readers, or because we stuck to our guns on our pricing, and didn’t agree a price that worked for us and the brand.
- We started thinking about travel blog posts – including a practise run in France earlier in the year. We recorded a lot of footage on a foodie trip and hoped to get a video out, but to be honest, since it was our first time, we’re not 100% sure on the quality. We may still get it out. If not, we’re hoping to blog about a trip to New York we have planned early-ish next year.
- We paid a lot less attention to Living the Blog (so sorry!) – we just seemed to run out of time every week! We’re really hoping to be able to publish more frequently during 2019.
We recommend that you check out our How to Start a Food Blog post (currently this is on Kitchen Sanctuary, but we’ll move it over here at some point) if you are thinking about giving this blogging thing a go too!
If you are interested in blogging you can sign up to receive our free newsletter.
Note – there are some links in this post that are affiliate links – which means that if you click on them and then sign up to the service/product we get a small commission (at no extra cost to you of course). If you do click through then thank you so much, it helps us keep LivingTheBlog and KitchenSanctuary going.
(fyi – this info is based on earning reports and invoices for work done in the month of Oct, it’s not based on money that has actually come in yet, so there may be some variations based on things like paypal fees or exchange rate fluctuations):
- Sponsored posts and Freelance writing/photography/video: £5809.80 ($7542.26)
- AdThrive: £8679.74 ($11268.00)
- Amazon Affiliate sales £204.95 ($266.07)
- FoodBloggerPro affiliate sales £0 ($0)
- Tailwind Affiliate £0 ($0)
- How I earned $40k in my first year of blogging affiliate sales £0 ($0)
- Tasty Food Photography £0 ($0)
- The Food Photography book affiliate sales £0 ($0)
- SiteGround Hosting Affiliate sales: £0 ($0)
Total = £14,694.49 ($19,076.33)
This October was the first time we got over $10,000 from ad earnings. We moved over to Adthrive earlier in the year, and they’ve been fantastic. We’ve watched our ad income steadily grow along with our traffic, and seeing that result had us both jumping up and down!
Unfortunately we got quite a few zeros for affiliate sales on ebooks etc – Although in fairness, when we do get any income from them, it tends to be from the links in the income reports. Since we haven’t posted an income report for a year, the lack of sales makes sense.
(currently this includes regular payments for tools, membership fees and advertising but not inconsistent things like courses, trips and props). Also, we have a part-time VA, but we don’t publish what we pay for that since we only have one, and it would basically mean we’re publishing our VA’s earnings (which we don’t think is very fair).
- FoodBloggerPro: £16.37 ($20.83)
- Teachable training: £26.78 ($34.80)
- We Blog North membership £2.50 ($3.21)
- Cloudways hosting and backups: £72.42 ($102)
- Tailwind for Pinterest: £8.02 ($9.99)
- Tailwind for Instagram: £8.02 ($9.99)
- Tailwind Tribes: £11.68 ($14.99)
- Tailwind Smartloop: £11.68 ($14.99)
- MailChimp: £71.04 ($91.18)
- Adobe creative cloud: £35 ($44.92)
- Facebook Ads: £7.80 ($10)
- OptinMonster: £12.93 ($16.58)
- Geni-us links: £10 ($12.83)
- Food: £360 ($513.14)
- Rackspace email hosting: £9 ($11.55)
- Epidemic sound: £10 ($12.83)
- Social Warfare: £10 ($12.83)
Total = £656.41 ($734.46)
Net Profit = £14,038.08 ($18,341.87)
Ok, this is the bit we’re really excited about that prompted us to publish this report. We hit 1 million views!!! We’re REALLY hoping this wasn’t a complete one off (for November we were 200 views off 1 million, so fingers crossed we’ll hit that mark again soon).
Here’s a screenshot from Google Analytics for Page Views for the month:
Here’s a breakdown of traffic sources based on the number of sessions. Our google traffic is definitely our main source of traffic by far. Looking back at previous income reports, google has generally appeared at the top for the last couple of years – although not quite as far ahead of the other sources. Further back in 2016 it was sometimes Pinterest that provided more traffic – or Pinterest was at least in very close second.
Here’s the info on the location of our readers. The top 6 usually have the same contenders, but during the course of 2018, we’ve found that UK traffic has grown at a significantly faster rate than the US. So it’s fairly common for us to see the UK, rather than the US at the top of the list now.
I think that’s all from me. I hope you found the blog income and traffic report for Oct 2018 helpful. You can check out our other income reports here. Please let me know if there’s anything you want me to talk about in future posts. Just drop me a note in the comments.