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How Sandy Plans to Make $30,000 in 2012

Hi!  I’m Sandy and I run the blog at Yes, I Am Cheap.  As you might have guessed, it’s a blog about my journey to get out to debt.  I started the blog with about $120K in debt, and I have steadily worked my way downward, all the time sharing my triumphs and the occasional bumps in the road along the way. I also share how I make money on the internet every single month.

I took this challenge because while I’m able to make some online money, I know that I am not maximizing my efforts.  I could certainly be doing much better than I have been doing and I know it.  A part of the reason why I have not worked to my full potential is the lack of time.  I work a full-time job with a minimum of an hour long commute at each end.  At the end of my day it’s enough just to be able to respond to comments and think of the next day’s post.  If advertisers didn’t stumble into my blog, I probably wouldn’t make a dime.  But, we’re going to change that, you and I.

I took this challenge, because I know that it’s entirely possible, but $30,000 seems like a daunting number.  I like to break things down into smaller, more manageable goals.  A $30,000 online income equates to an average of $2,500 per month.  That’s a bit more manageable than the larger sum.  So, here’s how I plan on making it to $30,000 in one year.  It’s not going to be easy, but who says making a full-time income online ever was?

  1. Private Advertising
    The majority of my revenue (around $1,000 per month) currently comes from this area.  I need to step it up a bit.  I want to get this up to around $1,500.  This means that I will have to churn out new articles, work on building links to them, getting them ranked and selling advertising space in the articles to ad managers.  Either that or I will have to beg people with whom I have had past relationships for new opportunities.
  2. Optimize Adsense Placements
    I currently make roughly $100 per month through Google’s ad network, Adsense.  Google gives you advice on where to place your ads and how to make them look in order to improve the amount of times that someone clicks on your ads.  I’ve been lax at taking their advice because what the view as the most optimal placements are often the ugliest or most intrusive.  I’ve already slightly redesigned my site to improve placement opportunities and it is working so far.  I will also have to do the same on my niche sites. I hope to double revenue to $200.
  3. Publicize Niche Sites
    Speaking of niche sites, I realize that I now have three of those that are just basically sitting there.  One is on autopilot, but I can probably work on building links back to it.  That’s an ultra-secret project that I am loathe to disclose since it has very few competitors. Of course, it also has a low search volume, but that’s neither here nor there.  The other about bad tenants needs some new content, but it ranks well for its key words.  It has the potential for private ad placements.  The final one about shirataki noodles is new site that I create in order to take part in a niche site duel, and needs to be publicized.  I hope the improvements will add to my Adsense and private advertising revenue.  If I can also make some commissioned or affiliate sales of the right products through these sites, I hope to make $100 per month.
  4. Webmaster Services
    I love building websites and have done a bunch for friends and family.  I currently act as a webmaster for two individuals, but I don’t charge them anything.  That’s kind of dumb since they have requests all the time.  Also, a few friends have referred me to their friends.  I have one potential client waiting for me to build a website for him, but I’ve been too busy.  He’s prepared to pay me $600 to do it.  If I can step up to building on average one site every two to three months plus charging an average of $100 per month for webmaster services, then I should be close to hitting my $2,500 per month target at least six months out of the year.
  5. eBay
    Finally, when I do have time I can make some decent money selling things on eBay.  It really takes a lot more time than I care to give because people always have questions and I tend to monitor my eBay auctions way too much.  I need to let go and just let the auctions run! Incidentally, I also design eBay auction templates.  My own template looks incredibly professional (I like to toot my own horn), so I am usually able to command higher pricing than my competitors.  Having a well-designed auction makes a world of difference.

That’s how I plan on making $30,000 online this year.  A lot of things require significant time commitments, and I am horrible at managing that.  I will have to organize myself much better than I currently am if I want to make my goals.  I think that it’s utterly possible, but it certainly won’t be easy.   See you on the other side of $30,000!

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12 Responses to How Sandy Plans to Make $30,000 in 2012

  1. Stepping up the webmaster services could be a big source of income provided that it comes naturally for you and doesn’t take up a lot of time.

    • I’m so bad at doing things. I literally have people calling/e-mailing all of the time, but I don’t charge. I’m thinking of providing services for free in exchange for putting my ad network codes up. Different kind of revenue model. Might work!

  2. Derek says:

    Great plan Sandy! I think you are underestimating the potential of your niche sites though. If you just sell one ad a month on one of the four sites, you could easily bring in $300+ a month, and I think that’s your absolute minimum potential. Focus on those sites and I bet you’ll make your $30k goal. Good luck!

    • I am probably underestimating some. One niche site is bringing in about $150 right now, making my goal. But it’s prime season for that niche, so I don’t know how sustainable it is. The others, I just have sitting on the sidelines, waiting. I need to step up my game!

  3. Best of luck, Sandy! I like the bad tenants niche, and feel you could probably expand that more though I don’t know what the competition is like.

  4. I like the bad tenants niche too but unfortunately it means you have to have bad tenants to have content. You could also have contributors. I’m sure people would LOVE to write articles telling all about their bad tenants.

  5. Good luck Sandy! I know that you can make more from your site than you currently are!

  6. Jonny says:

    Awesome Strategy Sandy! Well, I think Private Advertising plan would work better..

    Keep it up mate :)

  7. Pete says:

    Sandy, well done for setting yourself some goals for reducing your debts by increasing your revenue. The fact you have people asking you to make websites for them shows you have a talent in that direction, so perhaps that’s something you could develop over time.

  8. Oren says:

    Looks like you have a lot of options to get there. I think that any one of those extra areas might be able to get you to that $30,000 mark.

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