As July is about to end, I feel it’s a good time to decide what I want to accomplish in August and to come up with a plan for my extra money making activities – investing, writing/blogging and selling on Amazon.
Here’s where I’m currently at in each area:
Since April, I’ve been contributing $100.00 a month into a Roth IRA that I opened at Betterment. They allocate the money between the stocks and bonds in their portfolio and reinvest my dividends. As of today, I’m up 2%. This isn’t a whole lot, but more than the .01% that I am making in my savings accounts.
Every payday I put money into my savings accounts and they are building up nicely. However, the interest rates are terrible. I want to keep some of my money in the savings accounts for emergencies but the rest really should be in a spot that earns a higher interest rate. Unfortunately, I’m not good at researching stocks and investing on my own.
In fact, I do not enjoy the stock market at all. That’s why I didn’t place any trades in my retirement accounts at Merrill Edge or my stock account at ShareBuilder last month. I am very thankful that I found Betterment as they do the work for me. I wrote more about Betterment in my post, Online Trading Firms (That I Use): Part 2.
Writing & Websites
Since I started writing, I have earned $35.00 with Google Adsense, $93.00 with Bubblews and $30.00 with the Amazon Affiliate program. Plus a few pennies at a few other writing sites that I joined.
I don’t enjoy writing on Bubblews and spend very little time on that site. I just checked today and it’s been almost 2 months since I wrote my last post there. But I am just $7.00 away from hitting the $50.00 redemption mark. So, I think that it would be smart to get active on that site for a few weeks or at least until I get to my $50.00. I can buy plenty of FBA supplies with that money. As posts only have to be 400 characters, it doesn’t take long to write one.
My biggest frustration is with my websites. I love working on them and want to take them to the next level. I have had success this year once I started implementing what I learned from the Niche Success Blueprint course that I purchased. All but the first $3.00 of my Amazon Affiliate income was earned this year after I started NSB. I’m frustrated because I don’t have a lot of time (due to full time job and Amazon FBA) for writing blog posts and building traffic to my sites.
I thought about completely discontinuing my websites so that I can concentrate on FBA, but that wouldn’t make sense. Instead, I’ll continue putting them “on hold” for a while longer. It’s not costing me very much money to keep them – my hosting fees are prepaid for another 18 months, my annual domain registration fees are tiny and all I’m paying for is my subscription to Aweber. I already paid for my training courses, my website themes and my keyword research tools. So even if I do nothing with these sites and let them sit, I will still earn money with them. In fact, I just got an Amazon Affiliate sale on a blog post that I wrote a few months ago.
I love selling on Amazon and will continue with it. I believe that I can make more money today than what I do with my websites. I am doing very well with finding items at a very low cost and selling them for many times over. I have had some crazy high returns on some of my inventory. My biggest challenge is finding enough products to send in. Again, because I do work 6 days a week at my job, I have very little time to source. I usually send in 20 to 30 items each week but that really isn’t enough to get to where I want to be. Earlier in the month I did some calculations and I really need to be sending in 75 to 100 items a week.
Besides sourcing for inventory and sending it in, I have been very busy with other Amazon FBA tasks:
- Created a series of Excel spreadsheets for inventory tracking and bookkeeping
- Joined InventoryLab (still in my free trial) to see how that works compared to my spreadsheets
- Registered for sales tax permits in seven states
- Purchased a DYMO 450 printer and wrote a blog post about it
- Purchased and watched/read these training materials: Amazon Boot Camp, Back to School Webinar and Guide and Bundle Basics and Advanced Strategies
So, as you can see, I’ve been spending time learning about FBA and doing business related tasks.
August is still going to be an Amazon FBA “learning” month for me. However, once I get a few more items learned and out of the way, I believe most of my Amazon FBA time will be used for sourcing and sending in the inventory. Once I get a good routine down for those tasks (as they are repititive), then I believe I’ll have more free time for my websites.
With that said, here are my August goals:
- Write quick Bubblews posts until I reach my $50.00 redemption mark
- Finish registering for sales tax in the states that I have nexus in
- Learn how to do a shipment in InventoryLab
- Do my July Profit and Loss statement in both Excel and InventoryLab
- Create and send in my first bundle
- Apply for the Health and Beauty category
- Write one or two blog posts for my websites
I’m especially interested in items #5 and #6. Those two goals should help me with finding more inventory to send in as I’ll have more options to choose from.
I do tend to work long hours between my job, websites and Amazon FBA that I forget to relax and have fun. I do have a couple of short trips planned for August and September and I’m going to make a point of taking at least one evening off per week.
Thank you for visiting and please feel free to leave a comment or question below – even if it’s just to say hello!
p.s. If you are interested in joining Amazon FBA, I recommend the Amazon Boot Camp training videos. The creator, Jessica Larrew is an Amazon FBA expert and provides a lot of information that will help you get your FBA business up and running. I plan on watching her video on how to create shipments in InventoryLab next. Besides the videos, you are invited to join a private Boot Camp Facebook group – I have learned so many tips from the members there.
Photo Credit: © Krasimira Nevenova – Fotolia.com