Monthly Income, Growth & Traffic Report – December 2014


This is the 27th income report as part of the zero backlink experiment.

Every month I will publish a post like this one that shows you how this blog is progressing and everything I have done across the month to get it there.

These reports will help me track my own progress while teaching you what to do and more importantly what not to do.

What I Have Done In December

As we moved closer to the holiday season in December I began to wind down my work load in preparation for a couple of weeks off.

Behind the scenes I put a solid plan together for the blog in 2015 that will see a number of improvements across the board – including working less by bringing 3 staff on board next month.

Last month was a great month for earnings but this was because of a couple of unique events like the sun setting of my tutorials and Black Friday.

So with taking some time off combined with December usually being a slow month in the internet marketing world it will be interesting to see how that has affected things.

Content Creation

I published a total of 8 posts this month which is 1 more than last month even though I worked less – weird.

We kicked off with a roundup of Cyber Monday deals.

Then I took a close look at Bing SEO and let’s not forget all of the Google ranking factors as well!

I also revealed the 3 new Google ranking factors that you must be paying attention to in 2015.

You also learnt how to find influencers for your own gains.

Other than those posts we just had the regular best of internet marketing & income report roundup posts.

The Best Laptop On The Planet

I was lucky enough for a Dell Brand Ambassador to get in touch with me and offer me the brand new Alienware 13 laptop.

It arrived a few days ago and let me tell you this thing is an absolute beast!

  • Intel i5-420U 2.7Ghz Processor
  • 2GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 860M
  • 8GB ram
  • 512 GB SSD
  • 13.3 Inch QHD Display

I was worried it wouldn’t be as portable as my current laptop but it weighs the same and is even a bit smaller – but with 4 times the power!

Thank you to Alvina Torres for sorting that out – she can also hook up some awesome discounts!

Turning Up The Heat With Facebook Ads

Not so long ago Stuart Walker offered some great advice which I instantly implemented across the blog.

As part of that I had to create a range of lead magnets and content upgrades to offer across the blog.

This month I decided to take that a step further by combining those with $2,000 worth of Facebook Ads to grow the blogs readership on auto pilot.


You can see one of the campaigns I ran above which did a great job at bringing targeted traffic to the blog.

I’ve been experimenting throughout December so I will roll out a solid campaign for January soon. Here is a sneak peak at some of the split test results-


I will be sharing all my Facebook learnings over the coming months don’t worry :)

Write For The Blog

I also introduced a page inviting people to write for the blog.

I spent a lot of time thinking about that before introducing it and put together a very strict set of guidelines for anyone that wants to publish here.

I am hoping that by inviting others to publish on the blog you guys will benefit from having a range of experts in their respected fields sharing their best bits.

That way you are not only limited to my knowledge – for example I get a lot of questions about Local SEO and that’s not something I have experience with.

I’m going to be keeping a close eye on this though but the few applications I have received so far are looking fantastic!

New Theme Coming Soon

I launched the blog over 2 years ago and since then not a lot has changed with the theme & layout.

On top of that the theme I use isn’t coded all that well and certainly doesn’t live up to modern standards.

Combine that with the amount of complaints I get about how bad the site is on mobile and the fact that Google prioritize mobile sites in mobile search – it was time to take action.

There is huge risk in changing your theme though from an SEO & conversion standpoint. A drastic design change risks crippling your conversion rate. A drastic code change risks crippling your onpage SEO and seeing you tumble down the rankings.

So I have decided to keep things simple. The design is not going to change at all – you won’t even know the new theme is live when it is live.

What will be different though is it will be coded to modern standards with responsive HTML5 & CSS3. It will also be much quicker and have full Schema integration baked in along with Visual Composer support.

The guys at are working on it as we speak!

Crunching The Numbers

So let’s get our hands dirty and take a look at what my hard work has done for me this month.

Visitor Statistics

I’ve been trying to consistently break the 50,000 unique visitors barrier which fell just short at 49,075 (1,635/day) last month.

This month though that has leap frogged to 60,634 (1,956/day) this month which is largely due to the investment in Facebook advertising.

As long as it stays above 50,000 consistently though I will be a happy bunny.


Most Popular Content

The new Google ranking factors post stole the show this month!

Following closely behind were the Google ranking factors and Bing ranking factors tutorials.


Top Traffic Sources

Traffic sources are mostly dominated from the various Facebook ad campaigns I ran throughout the month.

If you take a close look you will see that the traffic coming from those ads perform nearly as well as traffic coming from Google.

The only difference is I can turn up/down the volume of traffic with Facebook on demand.


Search Engine Traffic

Google have been very good to me with traffic recently and it has held steady at 36,887 (1,190/day).

That is a little bit of a drop from last months 36,905 (1,230/day) but there really isn’t that much in it!

The top keywords we can actually see are dominated by brand and direct URL searches!


YouTube Views

I lost all of my historical YouTube views because of changes I made to the branding – so I keep track of them separately.

Last month YouTube brought in 19,619 views which jumped to 28,877 this month – the biggest jump in a long time.

That also had a knock on effect on total minutes watched which shot from 100,718 to 204,669! That means there were 4.6 people watching every minute of every day!

All of that jump is down to this single post.


Social Shares

The blog has seen a total of 60,206 shares across Facebook, Twitter and Google+ this month compared to 57,189 last month.

  • Google+ – 16,346 (16,198 last month)
  • Twitter – 24,685 (25,903 last month)
  • Facebook – 16,306 (17,957 last month)


The most important metric on the entire blog – earning a subscription from someone is the ultimate form of commitment and conversion.

This month brought 5,318 new subscribers across various channels which is a bit of a drop off from last months 7,637.

There are now a total of 94,178 subscribers across all of the different channels.

  • E-mail – 3,507 (6,407 last month) / Total: 48,567
  • Twitter – 228 (547 last month) / Total: 6,576
  • YouTube – 270 (220 last month) / Total: 6,680
  • Facebook – 1,294 (501 last month) / Total: 14,727
  • Google+ – 147 (145 last month) / Total: 17,331
  • RSS – -128 (-183 last month) / Total: 297

Income Report

Here are the numbers you really want to see-

Affiliate Earnings

ATTENTION: Learn My Secrets With Instant Access To The Income Report Archive


Consultation Earnings

I separate out the consultation earnings from the affiliate earnings. The blog drives affiliate sales directly and whilst it does generate consultation leads these are separate projects in their own right.

I didn’t take on any consultation work this month which results in zero consultation earnings.

Other Income

I’m working on another project right now that is part of the blog but not something I’m ready to talk about publicly yet or maybe ever.

I will declare the income here though as it wouldn’t be possible without the blog and ‘technically’ it is affiliate income.

This earned a total of $6,403.70 which is on par with last months $6,382.57.

Earnings Total

  • Affiliate Income – $16,018.20
  • Consultation Income – $00.00
  • Other Income – $6,403.70
  • Expenses – $2,049.99

Grand Total: $20,371.91 / £13,076.94 ($34,781.06 / £22,099.35 last month)

After an incredible month last month I was expecting to see a huge drop off in December.

Luckily though that still fell over the $20k barrier which is an income level I would like to maintain month on month along with 50,000 unique visitors.

Signing Off

Normally this is where I write something interesting about next month or wrapping things up – but it’s New Years day and I’m really hung over.

So all I’m going to say is HAPPY NEW YEAR – I WISH YOU AN AWESOME 2015

39 Responses

  1. Happy New Year 2015! :)

    That was a pretty big drop off for December, but I guess it’s good it still got over the $20k mark.

    To a another great year!

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:20 am

      It was indeed, but it was an expected drop so no drama :) If January breaks $15k I will be happy

  2. 1.1.2015

    Fantastic report Matt !

  3. Trend Hijab

    I just can say WOW!your earning so awesome Matt. I think everyone who wants to learn about getting earning from online activity they must learn from you.
    Congrats Matt!

  4. 1.1.2015

    Well done but somehow I envy you lol. This year I’ve set a target of earning at least $2000 (it a lot in my currency) or I may as well give up. I’ve already earned $6

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:18 am

      I would learn to shed any feeling of envy, the only thing envy does is hold you back.

  5. 1.1.2015


    Great month!

    You have many subscribers with Aweber which will be costing you each month.

    Why do you not list this as an expense?

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:16 am

      Aweber was an existing expense from one of my other businesses

  6. 1.1.2015

    What an incredible year. I hope you keep that up in this new year.

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:16 am

      Ohhh I’ve got some interesting things planned :)

  7. 1.1.2015

    Great work. Inspiration for us all as usual.
    Would love to know how you layout the stats and graphs part of these type posts. They always look so crisp!

  8. 1.1.2015

    Another great month Matthew, great stuff! I am always interested in your income sources as I have a fitness blog that gets about 30,000 visitors a month and concentrate on mostly Google Adsense (which I notice you don’t use at all).

    Your income is so split between so many products that all you need is traffic to keep things going. I love your strategy

    I am sure you will have a great new year. Nurse that hangover and have a great day!

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:14 am

      Thanks Bill – yeah I have found AdSense to be a waste of time for the most part and it’s always better to monetize directly through your own or affiliate products.

      I’ll be killing banner ads on this blog soon for that very reason.

  9. 1.2.2015

    Hi Matthew,

    Congratulations on your record month! You definitely deserve it though as your blog is one of the most complete and open I have seen.

    I have been a loyal reader for the past 18 months and have recently become inspired to step up my game because for once I believe there has been a clear path put in front of me to help me succeed.

    I appreciate all your efforts and wish you even more success in 2015.

  10. 1.2.2015

    Excellent work again Matt. Sweet looking laptop too! You’ve been talking about this secret project for a while, I’m excited to see what it is!

    Great conversions on your FB ads too, have you considered testing ads going to your FB page as well to increase engagement?

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:13 am

      Thanks :)

      Actually I don’t think there is anything I’m not testing on Facebook lol

  11. 1.2.2015

    Matt, it is amazing how you are consistently earning this much money.

    If I were earning even fifty percent of your monthly income here in India then I could just work for 6 to 7 months and enjoy rest of the year without any worries.

    Well done Matt. I will say it again Well Done

  12. 1.2.2015

    Hey Matt

    Hope you are doing awesome. I was following you for quite long and one of my New Year resolutions was to set up a blog. I’m taking yours and couple of other from around Internet (Tom Ewer) as an example of how my blog and my writing should look like and where I need to focus all my strength.

    Keep doing a great job! You are making h*** of lot money!

    Have a successful New Year Matt.

    Wish you all the best


    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:10 am

      Good luck with the venture Luke. It’s a hard rocky road at the start but stay consistent and you’ll arrive!

  13. 1.2.2015


    I wanted to recommend you to expand a bit more your expense part. For sure there are much more expenses related closely to your website and growing standards.

    – list building service (like AWEBER?)
    – domain renewals for main website and other test projects
    – tools with monthly subscriptions
    – extra freelancer help ( i am sure you are using from time to time)

    I am not saying that you are hiding data, I say more that you probably have to rethink more deeply what expenses are running out for creating posts or maintaining the website.

    Transparency is always a win!

    • January 5th, 2015 at 11:10 am


      I only track expenses generated as a direct result of the blog, so other test projects aren’t included.

      The Aweber service was already existing from other projects so there isn’t any additional cost there.

      I don’t have any tools with monthly subscriptions that are used on the blog nor have I hired any freelancer help.

  14. 1.2.2015

    Another solid month Matt! Happy new year BTW!

  15. jona

    You are awesome. Thanks

  16. Penny

    Interesting. I like the variety of income sources that you have.

  17. 1.31.2015

    Another great month Matt!
    I really look forward to these reports as they help me out a lot.
    Question about Facebook: I see you run some really successful ads there, and you have a decent following on Facebook.
    Any suggestions on how to build a Facebook page.
    Right now Twitter is my main source of traffic, but I would like to build Facebook as well.
    Maybe you have a tutorial, or know a good one?


  18. Nimantha

    You are crazy man and you make other people crazy too….ha ha ha. Congratulations on your big earnings. I will archive this one day too. Thanks for the motivation and sharing Matthew. You are awesome.

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