$500 Month - My 12 Month Case Study As An Amazon Affiliate

Last Update: Jul 3, 2017

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4K followers

All to often people get caught up on how much money someone is making per month without understanding HOW that person got to that desired income level. I never got to the amount of money I am making by simply putting a few posts online. It took months, of writing and learning in the beginning before I saw my first 69 cent month back in 2012. But after making that 69 cents, I knew that if I could make any money online, the sky is the limit. Fast forward 5 years and I never ever thought I would be where I am today.

But this all starts by getting through the tough times in the beginning. No website is born a superstar, they all start out with a domain authority of 1 and have to first learn how to crawl before they can walk etc...

Why I'm Doing The 12 Month Amazon Affiliate Case Study

So by doing this 12 month case study of an amazon affiliate website of mine, I hope you too can see the benefit of pushing through the tough times in the beginning and trusting that what WA teaches simply works!.

This is just one of the many websites I own and work on. This case study works out to be about 3 posts published every 2 weeks. So I did not pay that much attention to it, yet it still brings in enough money to call it a success (In my eyes anyway).

Plus I plan to build this website out to cover many many more sub niches of the main niche. At the moment it only really covers 3 types of products within this niche. Yes that is 80 posts talking about 3 types of products and I'm still not ranking page 1 for the main "best product keyword". In time I trust it will.

The MAIN takeaway from this post is that had I QUIT on my site/niche after 6 months, I would not be making $500 a month from it now and in the future. I consider this to be a realistic level to be at for a complete beginner after 12 months. Obviously, one can make a lot more than $500 month after 12 months. But this was designed to be a slow and steady website publishing at a slowish/regular rate.

The Results Of Publishing 3 Posts Per 14 Days

Below you can see I bought the domain on the 08th July 2016. So in 5 more days the domain will celebrate its first Birthday :). Also note the 82 posts. Which works out to 3.15 posts every fortnight. Which is totally achievable by anyone.

Date Of Creation

July 2016

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 8

Total Posts: 8

Total Organic Traffic: 3

Total Income (Amazon):

Clicks (0) /Sales (0) $0.00 :(

Notes: Brand new domain, nothing too unexpected here. Was not expecting site to earn for several months. I have had a brand new domain make its first sale in just 7 days. But this is rare from my experiences. Averaged 2 posts a week to get the site rolling faster.


August 2016

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 11

Total Posts: 19

Total Organic Traffic: 67

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (25) /Sales (1)= $2.06

Notes: First sale occurred on 28th August. So from buying a new domain it took 51 days (Just over 7 weeks). Much faster posting this month compared to normal (11 posts)


September 2016

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 9

Total Posts: 28

Total Organic Traffic: 99

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (46) /Sales (2)= $24.33

Notes:

3 months in and only 3 sales. Seems rather depressing right. I'm not sure this affiliate marketing is worth it right. It won't even cover my WA membership fees. Or will it? Should I just give up?.

This is about the time many people give up on their dreams and their websites. They think that after 3 months they should be making a lot more money. But in reality, it can 3 months is the beginning stages of being recognized by Google. The real magic doesn't happen for 3 -12+ months depending on niche/competition. Stay tuned t read the following months to determine if WA is worth the $49 month (Or Cheaper by the year)

October 2016

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 9

Total Posts: 37

Total Organic Traffic: 124

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (118) /Sales (2)= $2.10

Notes: Bad conversion rate this month of just 1.69%. Nothing exciting happening with the traffic/sales YET.


November 2016

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 8

Total Posts: 45

Total Organic Traffic: 279

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (109) /Sales (1)= $7.34

Notes: 5 months in and still can't manage to pay the WA membership. Good thing I have other sites making up the difference :). Terrible conversion rate of just .92%. Starting to really thing about pulling the plug on this website. But I dig my heels in and don't let up.


December Silly Season Begins

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 4

Total Posts: 49

Total Organic Traffic: 290

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (188) /Sales (1)=$1.65

Notes: What happened to the silly Christmas rush of sales?. Maybe 2017:). Total Made in 6 months $37.48

January 2017

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 5

Total Posts: 54

Total Organic Traffic: 491

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (211) /Sales (12)= $48.64

Notes: Finally, my casual site is paying for the WA membership. Very impressed with this month compared to the starting 6 months.


February 2017

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 5

Total Posts: 59

Total Organic Traffic: 609

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (299) /Sales (23)= $82.90

Notes: Starting to thank my self for not dumping this website after just a few months of existence.


March 2017

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 4

Total Posts: 63

Total Organic Traffic: 986

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (404) /Sales (28)= $122.18

Notes: Almost a sale a day. Hit with the bad news that Amazon changed their commission structure. Previously I was making 8.25% on just about everything I sold. Now for this niche I'm averaging 5-6% commission. Which is a huge amount of money that I will never receive now. Normally I would have made $163.35 this month, but with the amazon change I now lost $40 just on this one website.. So now I must work harder to gain back that lost 30% income!.

Also moved into our brand new home this month and had no internet for weeks. Hence just 4 posts this month.

April 2017

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 4

Total Posts: 67

Total Organic Traffic: 1519

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (669) /Sales (62) = $137.94

Notes: Finally reached the sale per day level.

May 2017

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 7

Total Posts: 74

Total Organic Traffic: 2758

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (1185) /Sales (102)= $319.51

Notes:


June 2017 (360 days old)

Number Of Posts Written This Month: 8

Total Posts: 82

Total Organic Traffic: 3759

Total Income (Amazon)

Clicks (1556) /Sales (192)= $495.38

Notes: 12.34% conversion rate!. Awesome. One Year Old Party!!


Total After 12 Months Of Being Online

Total Organic Search Engine Traffic : 11,004 Sessions 10,104 new users

Total Clicks To Amazon: 4810

Total Sales: 426

Total Income Per Visitor = $1244.03/11004 = $0.113 (11 cents per visitor roughly)

Total Income: $1244.03

In Conclusion

So after being online for 12 months this site of 82 posts has made $1244.03. Because I am a annual member of both Wealthy Affiliate and Jaaxy, my total expenses would be about $600.

This doesn't sound like it made much money right?. I am not worried at all. Why?

Because if you took notice of the month by month case study, with exception to the opening few months, the amount of clicks and amount of sales was going up every month. So more than likely, July 2017 is going to pass $500 this month. From here on, I am pretty much guaranteed $500 month making it a $6000 a year site. This is bare minimum of course.

The Site Is Still New!

While 12 months may seem like a long time to many of you, it really isn't in the online world. Many of my posts aren't even ranked on page 1 YET for the desired keyword. Yet, it is still pulling in traffic and making money.

So in time, with more content targeting low hanging fruit, I Will make more page one appearances and my income will skyrocket. I won't stop on this site until it is a $5-10k month site.

I plan to sell it one day to pay off my mortgage in one payment. My online income paid for the house and land deposit and it WILL pay for the entire loan :). As I have other websites, like my WA referral site (https://my.wealthyaffiliate.co...) that in total make me and my family enough money to live a happy life I can afford to sell this website when it is ready to be sold. Just so you know a 10k a month site can sell for over $200k USD.

*Internet Marketing Pretty Much Paid To Get Our Home To This Stage :)

So for that reason I won't be revealing the url for this domain, so please don't ask. This can be applied in any niche. This niche is not unique, it has a lot of competitors and I simply found my way in by using Jaxxy to discover targeted long tail buyers keywords.

Product Prices Matter - A Quick Comparison

If you are an Amazon affiliate, you would be aware of the vast range of products to promote. This is super awesome, unless you are promoting $5 products. It would take you a boat load of $5 sales to make any real money.

So I am going to leave this post and finish it with a small comparison between 2 sites of mine. This case study site has more posts, but is younger. This case study posts product ranges from $20-$150. Whereas my older established site, the products start around $200+. So don't waste your time on cheap products if you are solely in this to make money.

* In case you can't read the image. The older site with less posts but higher priced items made $595 from 865 clicks compared to this case study site which made $495 from 1556 clicks in the month of June 2017.

Recent Comments

206

I'm so glad I wandered into this post, nearly didn't find it, had to wade through all the posts from people talking about their rank and posting useless info to boost their rank...breath of fresh air to find this and see someone working on their site, thanks for the stats and I'm looking forward to reading all your posts.

Congrats too on the house you earned with your online work :)

Thanks Mary, i enjoyed making this post and looking back at the 12 months of progress. Not every site is like this obviously, some are slower to get going and others excel much quicker.

It looks like you're lucky one. I'm an Amazon affiliate for about nine months. I have aStore and additional Amazon page, put on sale a lot of items from $5.00 and more expensive. It big probability that at least one guy buys something - no way. No purchases at all despite very good traffic. I don't mind you take a look at my website. What do you think? Keep your way.

Traffic is almost useless if it is not the buying traffic you want. Have you got many buyers intent keyword posts?. These are where I make all my money. It's not about luck, it's about never giving up and if something isnt working, find out why and fix it!. Anyone can do this. Never stop learning and researching. In particular amazon niche websites if that is how you want to monetize your site. There is a ton of good info online. Thanks for stopping by.

Hey Josh, thanks for your awesome post which will help many "newbies" to gain a realistic perspective on building an online business.
I recently started a new niche site and will see how it will progress over time. The plan is to do a case study on my boot camp site. I must admit, reading niche case studies is one of my favorites. :-)
One question: by the sounds of it, you have quite a few niche sites plus your "WA" site. Do you outsource some of the content writing or are you doing it all by yourself?
Congratulations on your new house!!!
By the way, I am looking forward to your next case study.
All the best from Anke

Hi Anke,

I do mostly everything myself. I am a bit weird like that haha. I have been outsourcing articles more and more in 2017, but I still end up editing them. What starts as a 700 word article ends up being 1400 words haha.

Hi Josh,really enjoyed your post,Thanks for sharing,And congratulations on moving into your new home must be an awesome feeling..
Just wondering if you only have niches linked to Amazon or have you had much dealings with Ebay or Etsy.
Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
Cheers Mate.

Hi Matt, Ive never signed up with ebay, etsy or adsense even. When I found Amazon, I just stuck with them. If it ain't broke kind of scenario. Amazon are strict and sometimes it does feel like walking on egg shells around them. So staying up to date with their terms is an on going battle haha.

Thanks for getting back to me so quick Josh.
appreciate your feedback.
All the best Mate

Thanks for sharing this awesome case study! So excited to see the progress and that you really don't always need tons of posts to make money from a site. My WA site has 123 published posts and still doesn't come close to what your case study makes. Maybe mine will pick up after a year, it's about to be 10 months old.

It would be cool to see the continued stats for this site next year too Josh! ;)

Thanks again!
Grace

I will try and remember to do a 18 or 24 mth update. I don't normally document these stats so its good now cause I can reference this post and see how my other sites are performing. For example I have a 6 mth old site that made $50 last mth which in comparison is much better than this case study site.

Wow, maybe you're just getting better at building them! ;)

I'm not sure I want to outsource anymore posts at this point, I've been editing so much I'm wondering why I'm even paying for them!! Lol

Sorry I did say this earlier but your new house is going to be awesome! Congrats!

Thanks for this info Josh, it's hugely inspirational as I'm just in the process of getting started and not sure what my realistic expectations should be. A question though....do you concentrate more on product review types of posts on your blog, or just info posts. Just curious. Also wondering if backlinking is necessary and something you do.

Hi Mary, no I don't do back linking. I just write posts targeting low hanging fruit and share them on social media account. Most of my posts are targeting keywords with buyers intent. About 10-15% would be informational posts.

Great inspirational post, thanks Josh. Question -- Aside from 'best of' posts, do you also write many individual product review articles? Does one tend to do better than the other? Also, do you balance out your site with plenty of informational posts as well? Lastly, do you do any backlinking? Oh, one more thing...do you concentrate much on social media to bring in traffic? Thanks!!

Hi Stephan,
No backlinking, just finding really descriptive adjective style keywords related to the products. For example instead of the best gaming pc, I would look for ways into the keyword such as 'most powerful PC for HD Gaming' or something like that. I share posts on social media account, but not really an active social marketer. I don't do individual product reviews. Occasionally I do Product A VS Product B reviews as the competition is not as strong. I do mostly buyers intent keywords and about 10-15% info posts.

Great, thank you :-)

This is valuable information and really shows how one must look at all angles of the online marketing business. I particularly think it is important that we look at the price point for products that we sell or promote. Your data clearly shows it can make a difference! Thanks! Dave : )

Absolutely Dave. Price point makes a huge difference when dealing with physical products in particular as commissions are lower. Thanks for reading.

Dear Josh

You appear to be saying to the WA audience that it is their domain name,their content writing, and skill set development that makes the difference in their outcomes. Be Patient! Stick with it!
A good reality infusing case study report.
Congratulations!


DRL
drlumsden@hotmail.com
Skype name: marketing

Hi Josh, so kind of you to show these numbers, this is incredibly important for everybody who is building an online business. Personally, you have always been an inspiration for me and I have learned a lot from your comments here at WA. What you show is a real struggle, but also persistence that pays off.

You knew the system would work so you knew you had to continue with it. But beginners do not know, and tend to give up. This is why it is so important to have such an example to show. Going to bookmark this for sure.

What a coincidence, I started a site almost the same time as you, but published twice fewer posts, and far less consistent than you. Have to make such a detailed analysis to fully compare, but I already see a complete similarity with your case.

Great to read your thoughts about product prices; in fact I abandoned one site (which was created in the same time as the one mentioned above) because of this same issue. Had to write tons of posts to create any substantial income.

You are building a great house there. Interesting for me to see, in EU we are not used to see such type of construction, it seems all wood.

Hey Jovo, I think its important that beginners see that it can take several months of nothing happening before something starts to happen. Now whenever anyone asks me how long until I make money I can show them this now haha.

Yea product price point can certainly make a huge difference when dealing with amazon. Imagine if these products were all $200 plus. The site would be at $1000 a month already.

Yes the house is all timber frame. We also do steel frame here as well which is starting to grow more in popularity. The outside is half brick and half fibrous cement (meant to look like timber boards). I assume much more insulation in the EU as well to handle the colder weather.

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