Editor's Note: The content regarding eHow is no longer relevant. Please visit our Getting Started page, which we keep up to date with advice for getting started with earning money online. (Updated 10/2015)
This is the seventh installment of my monthly report that I use to summarize my income, where it's coming from, and anything I did or learned that may have had an impact (or will may an impact) on my earnings.
It's pretty crazy to think that I've been living off of passive income for the last 7 or 8 months, grossing over $135,000 and learning so much during my journey. I hope that in the future, my income will continue to rise and I can continue to provide you with insight on how I do internet business and earn a passive income.
Important Goings-On in May
May seemed like the shortest month of the year so far. It's probably because I've been so busy.
I've spent the last two weeks of May writing a new study guide for one of the new exams. I actually finished last night and spent today setting up the shopping cart and my website so it could finally go live. Because I've done this before with my first study guide, it was SOOOO much easier this time around. Now let's pray that I can earn the same amount as before too.
From start to finish my guide took about 65 hours to complete. That's less than two weeks of work at a 9 to 5 job, and I now have a product that has the potential to earn me an income for years. Again, the idea is about putting in the work now and reaping the benefits later (instead of putting in work now and only getting paid for those hours).
In addition to my new material, I've contacted some professional web designers to give GreenExamAcademy.com a nice, professional looking overhaul. Yay for virtual assistants! I'll let you know when this is finished so you can check it out. I'll probably put a before and after picture up—those are always fun.
The Smart Passive Income Blog
If all goes well, by tomorrow you will have already noticed a redesign of the blog. There was a bit of a delay in the redesign process, but it's finally close to being complete.
The purpose here is to not only make the blog look cleaner and more organized, but to start monetizing it using ad spaces and newsletters. I'm glad you have the opportunity to witness the changeover—it's a very exciting time for me and the life of this blog. I hope you like (or will like) the new design.
Our 1 iPhone application has been on sale for about a month. What have we learned? The iPhone app market is TOUGH!
We always hear about the guy who sold 50,000 units in one day, or the person who earned $500,000 in one week. There was even that story about a 9-year old boy who created an app that had some great success. But what we don't ever hear about is how most iPhone applications get lost in the sea of 50,000+ apps. A LOT of the success comes from marketing, so we're coming up with a plan to kick it up a notch.
We also have three other iPhone apps in development (yeah, we go all out), so that should definitely help.
Anyways, here is May's income breakdown:
Please note that these are figures from reports from each individual company for the previous month. It does not necessarily reflect the actual payment which, for some of the companies listed below, come 30 to 60 days later because of potential refunds.
An improvement from last month, which is quite a surprise. I expected less earnings because of the way the exam is transitioning right now (in regards to my study guide), but I guess there are still a lot of procrastinators who have yet to study for the exam they already signed up for before the deadline.
Important Things I Learned in May
While I was completing my new ebook, I had some days that I would be able to crank out 20 high-quality pages, and other days when I would complete only 6 or 7 that weren't quite as good, even through I worked the same amount of time. Why the difference? One word: focus.
Staying focused is key, but it's a hard thing to do, especially when working from home. There are a few things you can do that I learned will help you keep focused and stay productive:
- Eat a good breakfast! I've finally realized why my dad would tell me every morning I skipped breakfast that it is the most important meal of the day. It's because it is! After a good and wholesome breakfast your mind will stay focused longer and you'll have more energy to do anything. I realized that on days I skipped breakfast, I wrote less and worse.
- Get some sleep! Same reasoning as above.
- Take Breaks! Working for more than 1.5 hours at a time can really wear you down. I found that by taking more frequent (and shorter) breaks, you usually feel good when you get back to work and are then ready to crank out whatever it is you have to do. Oh . . . and power naps during these breaks are good too! I say 45 minutes is a good nap for revitalization.
- Communicate your schedule! When working at home, it can be really easy for someone (like your wife!) to just come over to your desk and tell you about some interesting article she read online. That's totally fine, but when I'm in the middle of a page or a section, it really halts my momentum, and it usually takes me a while to get back into the flow of things. This is why I learned to say, “Hey babe, I'm going to work on this section really quick for half an hour and then take a break with you.” You get what you need done, and she knows your focused on her during your break and not on your work. Woot!
These are things that can apply to everyday life really, not just doing business online.
As I said, SPI will be redesigned a little and I'll probably be working out any bugs that come about from that. Also, I'm looking into writing more ebook material and doing some market research on some new niches to diversify my income. I'll talk to you all more about that as it's going on.