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I’m keeping a profit-and-loss statement for each month, as well as a rolling total. I enter in income as it is received (rather than as it is billed) and do the same for expenses.
Here’s what it’s looked like since I started:
- April-December, 2014: Income $16,512 income – $3,782 expenses = $12,730 total profit
- January: Income $5,080 – $753 expenses = $4,327 profit ($4, 327 YTD profit for 2015)
I take 20% of my net monthly profit and transfer that into a savings account for taxes. Since I now do this full-time, I plan on setting up and paying quarterlies.
I also believe in tithing. Since I sold my business, I’ve decided to tithe to our church on that income and continue to support the missionary family in Costa Rica on my freelance income for 2015.
It makes a direct impact into an amazing mission (they’re setting up a daycare to take care of children, so their parents don’t have to bring them with to pick coffee beans, which surprisingly can be very dangerous!). It’s also a fun reason to try to make more money!
Income: $5,272, a 4% increase month-over-month.
Expenses: $978, a bit higher than I’d like.
Net Income: $4,294 (after expenses, but before tithe/tax). This is roughly the same as last month.
Virtual Assistance Work: 38%
Course Sales: 9%
Consulting (former office): 10%
Affiliate Sales: 2%
Other (Social Media Mgmt): 6%
My expenses were higher than normal again. My base expenses are about $300 per month (for job boards, coaching, basic website support, etc). This month I started working with a marketing person to help me take my business to the next level. There were also some fees associated with launching version two of my course and the affiliate program. Nothing out of the ordinary or that came as a surprise, however.
Of course there are still those pesky fees when getting paid, but I’m continuing to try to limit them as much as possible. Last month they amounted to ~$120, which is 12% of my total expenses. I certainly could find another way to spend that money, couldn’t you?
Thoughts on the Month
February was a decent month, especially since it’s such a short one. It’s always my goal to beat the previous month’s numbers and I was glad to be able to do that again.
In addition to the consulting section I added last month, I also added affiliate sales and an “other” category. It was nice to have my first affiliate payout (from the hosting provider I use) and I tried something new this last month, which was helping a fellow blogger with Pinterest marketing.
This was my second full-time month as a freelancer and I’m starting to hit my groove with my new schedule. It’s not perfect, but I’m continue to get better at managing my time and my energy.
I continue to think about and make plans for the future, which I think is also really important. I’m hoping that the work that I’ve been doing (that doesn’t yield immediate income) is going to start coming to fruition soon.
Goals for March
Since I just launched my affiliate program, I also recently communicated a contest to my affiliates for the month of March (if you’re interested, you can sign up to become one here). Basically, $100 is up for grabs (in addition to commissions) for the affiliate that has the most course sales come in through their link (with a minimum of 5). I thought it’d be a fun way to spread the news and incentivize people to share about 30 Days or Less to Freelancing Writing Success.
Beyond that, I’m still looking to take on one or two new key writing clients (if you know of anyone, send them here). It’s my goal to have five clients that need at least one article per week (or 4+ per month) that pay me a certain fee. I’m pretty close to being there already, plus have some clients that don’t fit that criteria (due to fee or frequency) that I’ll continue to work with.
My main concerns over the next month are that I’ll continue to be productive and enjoy the work that I’m doing. I want to make sure that I continue to build my business one piece (or article) at a time and avoid burnout.
It’s always going to feel like there’s more to be done or more money to be made. I don’t want to get caught up in that, but rather feel good about the work I put out and the effort I put into it.
Keep Your Head Down
If you’re currently hustling to build a business, we’re in this together. I’d love to support you, if you’re willing to do the same.