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What’s going on
December is typically a low month, but I got some nice surprises.
I was away from one week in The Gambia where I met lots of bumsters and I did little work, I hope to write about this trip soon.
New hosting: welcome Site5!
Few years ago I chose to host my websites on the cheap and well known HostGator. I have been happy with the service and their amazing customer service chat for a long time… but in the last months things became worse and worse and I realized how important is to re-evaluate periodically every service provider.
HostGator used to solve my technical problems with a 5 minutes chat, but no longer. Nowadays the average waiting time to speak with an operator is 30 minutes, and most of the first answers are disappointing.
Furthermore, the websites performances are pretty bad from Europe, especially the WordPress ones.
After evaluating what’s in the market, I decided to switch part of my websites to a Site5 reseller account.
This also allow my to resell professional WordPress hosting to my web development customers 🙂
I’m very happy with Site5 so far and here is why:
- Customer service chat let me wait less than 5 minutes and it’s very professional and with a personal touch. They solved me for free a mistake I did during the activation that normally requires a 25$ fee.
- I could choose the location of the servers, a very great option to keep the websites close to where the visitors are. My “European”websites (including this blog) are now hosted here in Amsterdam.
- The websites are much faster… the loading time of this blog went down from 5 to 2 seconds!
Habemus new website!
Another good happening is that I finally found a (hopefully) good website to buy: comohacer.info
It’s a Spanish blog dedicated to the DIY (Do-It-Yourself) with lots of good articles explaining how to build stuff. The top article is about how-to build a wooden house 🙂
I’ve some ideas on how to improve the website and grow the revenues, so you’ll read more about this website in the future. So far the profits are on track and judging by the comments left by the visitors, handymen like it a lot.
Affiliate payment terror
One of the company I’m promoting on my websites took 2 months and many emails to pay my affiliate commissions.
This is the worst thing they can do to their affiliate… I was quite afraid to be ended up on a scam and to loose the affiliate money I made in the last months with them. We’re talking about 2.000$ so I was a little nervous.
Luckily they are unprofessional but not thief, so I got paid eventually.
I learned a couple of lessons from this:
- Do background investigation before joining an affiliate program.
- Make direct contact with the affiliate manager in order to check responsiveness and communication (from the company above, I got emails with no greetings and no signature from Gmail accounts).
- Use as much as possible well-known affiliate programs such as Clickbank, Amazon, eBay.
Time for the numbers!
Adsense: €636.14 (last month €734.46)
Google Adsense registered a -13.4% from November, kind of normal considering the month with Christmas and New Years.
The reason why Adsense didn’t drop on the Xmas week is because exactly around that time I bought the new website I mentioned above.
Guy I hope to break the €1.000 mark in January!!
Feedblitz: €95.55 (last month €168.12)
My dear Feedblitz service, that I use to monetize RSS feeds and newsletters, lost lots of Ad visualization this month.
And I decided to contact Feedblitz because their reporting system doesn’t allow to see the performance per-feed, here is the public Q&A.
Premium Job posting: €514 (last month €81)
This is the total from the job posting service from the different websites: finally a very good month!
Wasn’t December a slow month on the online recruitment? Yes, my forecast from last month was luckily wrong. My guess is that while job seekers are ready for holidays, some organizations (in my case NGOs and no-profits) have budget to publish new job listings for the new year.
Switching off the free basic listing on AidBoard.com gave little result this month so I’ll keep monitoring.
Resume Access: €90 (last month €64)
This is another classic job board service: a subscription plan to access the resume database.
I had 4 new activation and one customer that cancelled, nice to see this growing because it’s a subscription with recurring payment and zero work for me.
Affiliate Programs: €145 (last month €75.29)
This bump has more to do with the Xmas time than with me finding good products to promote.
The highlight is the amazing result with Amazon: $13.63 in my best result 😛
Direct Advertising: €175 (last month €246)
I got a campaign renewal in AidBoard.com, proof that there’s some real value delivered to the advertisers there.
And a paid guest post for… 10$!
Total December 2013: €1,655.69 (last month €1,368.87)
Lessons Learned in December
I’m happy with the result of December because they exceeded my expectation.
The lesson this month is that there’s no stable source of income in my online portfolio!
I’m using lots of monetization techniques: Adsense, Feedblitz, direct Ads, job services, affiliates, and more but they are all fluctuating month over month.
I find very hard to predict those changes. Take the job posting, how come that in December there were so many paid listings?
I hope to hear some comments this month too, and thanks for reading!
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