What are income reports? They’re articles on your blog where you share how much money your blog made.
And in my opinion, income reports are awesome. I love reading them since it gives me insights into what people are doing in their blogging businesses, and what kind of money they’re making.
But there are both good and bad outcomes to publishing your income publicly on the web. Before you decide to write income reports on your blog, it’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into.
Income reports on RankXL
Some people don’t know, but I used to write income reports on RankXL. As a result, I’ll be able to give you details about my own experience writing them.
For me, I wrote monthly reports when I first started the blog, then stopped after about 7 months (more on why later).
Why I wrote income reports
To be honest, it wasn’t much of a thoughtful decision for me. I just knew that bloggers I followed at the time, like Pat Flynn, were doing it, so I did it too.
His reports were extremely popular in the blogging community and I thought it would be cool to produce some of my own. And I did!
And people loved them. In my opinion, they were probably my most anticipated blog posts every month. They got the most comments, and I would see a nice rise in new subscribers every time another one went live.
But after a while, I stopped writing them.
Why I stopped writing income reports
There are two reasons.
Reaons #1: They were getting boring to write.
I couldn’t imagine doing this forever. It was a monthly thing, so I needed to produce a new one each month. That means it needed new and exciting information.
Thankfully, a lot of stuff happened during the time I was publishing my income reports, so I had a lot of fun stuff to write about.
But when I was thinking of where the blog would be in the next few years, I didn’t want to continue writing income reports on the blog. I just wanted to produce great informational content that helped others.
If you think about it, income reports don’t really help you with anything. The only thing it does is give you inspiration to work harder.
But after a while, that inspiration can turn into demotivation, which leads me to my second point.
Reason #2: Income reports just seemed too spammy and braggy for me
It’s fun to read about someone who just started their journey and is working towards something. It gives you a frame of reference to compare your own results with.
But when you’re making over 5-figures per month, it just gets to be kind of showboating.
Each income report I published was kind of like saying: “Oh look how much I made. Isn’t this awesome?”
And that kind of content can be good once in a while, but to be publishing content like that every single month seemed like overkill to me. It can also get some negative comments from haters.
It didn’t align with the long-term vision I had for the blog, which was to just create an authority resource on the topic of SEO, generating traffic, and growing a blog.
So, after 7 published income reports, I stopped.
Reason #3: It’s a weird feeling when everyone you know knows how much money you make
When I was writing income reports, RankXL was a blog that I felt I needed to hide from friends and family.
Each time I told someone I know about RankXL, it was basically me telling them “Hey, I make this amount of money.”
It’s an uncomfortable feeling. That rang even truer when I was at a party and someone I’m not very close with said something along the lines of: “Come on… you make X dollars!”
That was such an disturbing feeling for me, especially since I’m a pretty private guy in general.
It was a tough decision
These reports were really popular. I enjoyed the process. Every time one went live, I got a stream of comments and emails that thanked me and congratulated me. It felt good.
So to stop doing something that people loved was a tough decision. But it was one that had to be made sooner or later.
At first, I got emails everyday asking when the next one was going to be published. People would leave comments in other blog posts asking what happened.
I had to tell everyone who asked one by one that I stopped because it didn’t align with the long-term vision I had for this blog.
Eventually the emails stopped, and today, the blog is better for it.
Should you write income reports for your own blog?
So now that I’ve told you about my experience with writing income reports, what do you think?
I hope this post didn’t make publishing income reports sound too negative. It’s not at all. It’s just not the right move for everyone. It depends on what you enjoy, and of course, your long-term vision for what you want your blog to be.
A lot of bloggers out there produce income reports, and they’re extremely interesting to follow. It generates a lot of attention, and usually becomes a pretty popular topic on your blog.
They’re also fun to write. The posts get really personal since the article is all about you and your business.
If that sounds like something you might enjoy, then go ahead and write income reports. Let me know if you do start them, since I’ll want to read them myself 🙂
You can always stop writing them in the future, like I did. If it turns out you don’t enjoy it very much, you can stop. The blog is yours and you have full control over what kind of content you publish.
So if you’re on the fence, you should at least publish a few income reports to try it out and see how you like it!