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January thru March 2011 Journey

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 1 3

So I began this “passive income” journey about three months ago now on January 1st, 2011. It’s been a huge learning experience. I have probably spent the last 3 months reading blog after blog about all of the ways you can make money online. At the time I was jobless (for reasons that I should outline in another article), but since the beginning of this path, I’ve made over $50 online and have gotten hired at a job that is okay for the time being.  I’ll get into a more detailed analysis about the monthly earnings below.

The Job

As of February 1st, I began working at the local middle school as a night custodian. This job allows me to be home with my wife and 2 daughters (1 more on the way!) so that I can spend time with them. Many jobs don’t allow that, so I’m blessed in this way. This work also isn’t that difficult. I have a specific “run” that I do every night, and when I’m done, I can spend the rest of the time doing whatever I want (as long as I stay at the school). So I bring my MacBook and I write and write and write.

Many of you haven’t seen many new articles produced by me on InfoBarrel lately. There’s a reason for that. I truly believe that 20% of your time should be to write your main articles, building your main websites and pages, and then the 80% of that time should be spent backlinking those main articles, pages and sites.

So in January I build a niche site, I wrote a bunch of articles on IB, and studied the whole “passive income” stratosphere. Then in February I started to backlink everything. So I spent almost all of February learning exactly how to backlink using anchor text and all that jazz and in March I did the same. But during those months I also tried to perfect my niche site so that it’s quite professional looking.

The Niche Site

I had never experienced the whole niche site idea until the beginning of January when I decided to stop reading about other people’s success with it and give it a go. I didn’t have much money, but through GoDaddy, I got a domain and a year’s hosting for $40. That’s pretty cheap to me.

The pursuing months I tweaked and tweaked the website so that it has finally started to generate some income. I didn’t see much in the beginning. Here’s my monthly average stats for January thru March for this niche site:

January – $8

February – $7

March - $22

So you can see that there’s a big difference between February and March. And it’s quite exciting if you ask me! The biggest thing has been trying to get my site on the first page of Google for my keyword (yes, I should have chosen more than one keyword – working on that now). But by March I finally hit the top 10 of Google and the results are showing. So we’ll see if I can keep it up and continue to backlink and make this site into something special.


InfoBarrel itself has been a wild ride. January was great. I wrote around 40-some articles and began to backlink those articles on sites like SheToldMe, InfoPirate, and Xomba. I believe, because of those backlinks, that my IB articles were seen and made a little money; because in February and March I saw barely anything in income for IB. So in April I’ve decided to backlink those articles some more and see how much of a difference it makes. Here’s my average income for the three prior months:

January – $7

February – $3

March – $3

My plan for the month of April is to write only 1,000-word articles and to write about 100 of them. That’s the plan. I really want to win 1st in the April Contest, so I plan on cranking these articles out. I really want to win enough months so that I can buy the Wacom Intuos4 Tablet.  I can’t afford it while being a janitor, so I’d better try and win some Amazon gift cards. And I know I’ll do it this month. I’ve saved up a couple articles to start off right.


For the first time in three months, I made some money with the Amazon Affiliates program. Just a few days ago, somebody purchased three items and on the 31st of March another person bought a book for their kindle. The book came out of nowhere because I never marketed it. So that’s really nice!

Amazon Income - $6.31

Other Sources

I did make a few bucks here and there with other articles and backlinking sites that provide Adsense earnings. Here they are:

HubPages - $3.54

InfoPirate - $0.83

Xomba - $0.04

Haha! Xomba! Oh what a place! Actually, I’ve stopped using Xomba because of their new rules for bookmarks. I never used them to market articles. They were just another place to bookmark articles on other sites. So I just figure I’ll use other places.

Resources I Have Been Using

One of the biggest resources that I began to use was PostRunner, by The Keyword Academy (thanks to Chezfat!). This program allows you to post any of your unique articles on a guest site. So you’ve got hundreds of sites all allowing for you to put an article on their site (containing 2 links back to whatever you want). This allows you to get your backlinks on different URLs, all pointing back to your page, article, or website so that you move up through the ranks of Google, Bing and Yahoo. What a great resource. You’re more than welcome to sign up for a 30-day free trial. Quit anytime.

Another resource I have recently discovered is SocialMonkee. You’ve got to read my recent article to fully review this social bookmarking tool.

I’ve also been using Social ADR, Niche Refinery (also on The Keyword Academy), and Fiverr. Oh yeah, with Fiverr, I did three jobs and made $12 in the process!


So my thoughts thus far about “passive income” is that if I can continue to see progress, I will most likely keep it up, especially with the niche sites. I promised myself I’d give it a year, so I plan to do so. If everything begins to produce for me a nice little income, then I’ll double my efforts (sheesh! That’s scary!) and create a bunch more niche sites on Google and articles on InfoBarrel. It’s just the numbers game after that. Thanks for reading!

P.S. All in all, I’ve made about $70 over all of my passive income streams in 3 months.



Oct 10, 2011 8:27am
Have you written an update to this yet? I'm curious about how your niche is doing! Great article...
Oct 10, 2011 12:21pm
I have not written an update to this yet. I'm not sure if I'm going to. But my niche sites are doing REALLY well I must say.

I'm hoping to be at a full time income by February.
Oct 10, 2011 12:45pm
Awesome! Congratulations...
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