One of the most important things you can do is to look back from time to time and review where you are. Where did you start this year? Where did you end? Are you on the right path?
I did this last year after just getting into doing commercial plugin development and a lot has changed and my end of the year numbers (below) are very different.
Last year I had 6 premium plugins on the Ninja Forms site. This year I added 3 Ninja Forms plugins (PDF Form Submissions, White Label Forms, PopControl) and 1 WooCommerce plugin (Popup Terms & Conditions). The revenue difference between this year and last year is massive and part of that is that the 6 plugins I already built had a whole year to attract buyers. The other part is that I had two plugins (PDF Form Submissions & WooCommerce Popup Terms & Conditions) that did particularly well.
I had a few people reach out to me for client work but I've found that my limited time is better spent working on products.
I tried doing some affiliate marketing this year. I only had affiliate deals with Ninja Forms, Codeable, and Easy Pricing Tables. I had several other offers but I wanted to start by dipping my toe in the water. I'm careful not to recommend things just for the sake of earning a few bucks.
My affiliate numbers are pretty dismal right now. Part of that is that some affiliates wait for minimum payout amounts. So I might not get paid until I get $100+ dollars in commissions. Another affiliate and myself are having some technical issues which should be resolved early 2014. Technically I was only paid $5.80 in affiliate commissions this year but if you include the payments I haven't yet received it's probably closer to $100.
This blog has grown considerably in the past year. It doesn't have a direct role in making money but it is a space where I can announce new products, gather information on new products, collect e-mail addresses for my newsletter, and have a discussion with other members of the community.
Here are my 2014 numbers on this blog.
I started my own newsletter this year after reading Authority. I'm mostly using it to promote my upcoming WooCommerce book. Newsletter growth has been steadily increasing. I grew my list from 0 to 212.
The numbers are the good stuff. The numbers provide the context that makes everything prior make sense.
- Units sold: 30
- Revenue from plugins: $465.62
- Number of client projects: 2
- Revenue from clients: $851
- Total revenue: $1,516.62
- Units sold: 472
- Revenue from plugins: $8,311.69
- Number of client projects: 0
- Revenue from clients: $0
- Revenue from affiliates: $5.80
- Total revenue: $8,317.49
As you can see this year and last year are very different. My revenue has grown almost 2,000% which is impressive and I think there will be another big jump next year.