Only a few years ago, I never would have imagined being able to earn a full-time income from making content online.
You hear all the “success stories” of people making millions of dollars and driving Lamborghinis, and you think you’ll never get anywhere close to that.
The reality is – you don’t need to be making millions of dollars a year to be successful online. All it takes is a few thousand per month (or less depending where you live), and you can quit your job and live off this income.
That’s how I started out.
After being laid off from my job in 2020 – I wanted to figure out how to make enough money online each month to cover my bills. Now, 2 years later – I’m making around $20,000 every month.
Let’s break it down shall we?
In March 2022, my YouTube channel and various other affiliate income sources generated $24,120.
If I break this down further, assuming I worked 4×40 hour work weeks – that equates to an effective full-time hourly rate of $150.
According to Glassdoor, Anaesthesiologists in the US earn $164 per hour. Now, I won’t for a second claim that what I do is anywhere near as important as an anaesthesiologist. However – it just goes to show how scalable and unlimited your online earning potential can be.
Here’s a quick snapshot of my gross income for March 2022. This is taken straight from my Xero accounting software:
You can see I have a number of different revenue sources. When people watch or read my content, they will often see Google ads which translates to Adsense revenue for me. If they end up purchasing a product or service that I mention, I will also receive affiliates revenue.
YouTube Adsense Revenue: $9167.75
This is typically my “bread and butter” source of revenue. I can count on it to be relatively consistent every month. This depends of course on how the channel performs. Often I can see decreases to $6000 per month, or as much as $12,000 per month towards the end of the year when advertising budgets are higher.
March 2022 was a good month for YouTube. I uploaded consistently and covered a lot of trending topics and newly released technology.
You might notice that although I technically made $10,254 – I only received $9167. The reason for this is tax. I’m not located in the US, but I still have to pay tax for Adsense generated from US viewers.
Amazon Affiliates Revenue: $7670
Amazon Affiliates is also a consistent source of income – sometimes even performing as well as Adsense.
You can see in the screenshot below this revenue is actually from February. That’s because Amazon Affiliate payments are delayed by a month. So you’ll receive revenue from February in March, and so on.
You’ll also notice a significant amount of revenue (50%) is from non-US countries. I spent hours and hours researching, configuring, and analysing the best way to maximise Amazon Affiliates – and I discuss this in my Supercharge Your YouTube Channel’s Amazon Affiliates guide.
Sponsored Videos Revenue: $6066
Just like Amazon Affiliates, sponsored video revenue can sometimes be delayed. Typically a sponsor will pay roughly 30 days after the video is published. Sometimes they even pay before publishing.
This $6066 consists of several sponsored videos, all costing around $1000-$2000 each. I can’t go into detail about the exact pricing or even the sponsor companies due to confidentiality reasons.
Companies pay this money to be featured in an existing video of mine. I briefly mention their brand at the beginning of the video, and then insert a 45-60 second sponsored segment halfway through the video.
I never do sponsored reviews, because one of my main goals is to build trust with my audience.
Other Revenue: $1214
This miscellaneous revenue consists of some Shopify revenue from my store, and also some smaller software affiliate programs I’m a part of.
Typically this revenue consists of a very small percentage of overall income, so I don’t spend much time on it.
Here’s an example of some earnings. This is the income for February that was paid out in March for a software used on desktop and laptop computers. It’s not a huge amount of money, but if I can continue building sources like this, it all starts to add up.
Things I’m Working On
I’m always trying to improve my growth and revenue strategy. Here are a couple of things I’ve come across this month that I want to focus on:
- Create more engaging content. I want viewers to watch longer, watch more – and comment more frequently. I’m going to try experimenting with more calls to action in videos (e.g. comment below if you also do this).
- Optimising video descriptions. I’ve already done a lot of work on this but I think I can improve. The goal is to reduce the number of low value affiliate links to prioritise higher-paying ones.
- Spend more time on this website. I’m currently finding it very difficult to take time away from YouTube. Frequent uploads is one of the best ways to grow quickly, but it takes a massive amount of time and effort to produce my content.
- Sponsor revenue vs growth. Sponsors base payments on the average views of your last 10 videos. My views can be sporadic – should I try to keep them consistent by uploading videos on the same topic? Or, should I sacrifice sponsor revenue to branch out with different types of content. I need to think about it.