The year is now over and with it comes the close of the 2013 $3K Challenge. And I have some great news. For the first time ever, I have completed the challenge! As of today, I have earned $3067.32 for 2013. Actually, I passed the $3000 mark on November 6 when I received final payment for the sale of this blog.
Since the sale of the site is much more than how far I exceeded my goal, this may have been a bit of a cheat. But my goal was to earn three grand and I did. So I am unrepentant. I never said that the income had to be sustainable!
The purpose of the $3k Challenge
Long time readers of this blog may recall when I announced the first $3K Challenge two years ago. My original purpose was to earn enough money to pay off my last remaining credit card. I am pleased to announce that 2014 will be the first year since 2000 when I start the year free of any and all credit card debt!
Granted, taxes and other expenses ate up nearly half of my earnings this year, but the profit from last year’s challenge, plus an additional year’s worth of minimum payments let me reach this goal regardless.
So what does 2014 bring?
Well, having that credit card payment gone takes a lot of pressure off my budget. With it gone, my monthly debt payments are reduced by nearly 25%. That provides a lot of wiggle room when I am in my winter survival budget.
But when the money flows freely again (I’m getting a promotion this spring!), I will use this payment for a debt snowball. By combining my existing minimum payment with the money I used to need to pay the credit card bill, I can come close to paying off a loan I took out 2 years ago to pay medical bills. With online earnings of just $400, I can start 2015 with just student loans.
My 2013 $3k Challenge Earnings Final Update
- Advertising: $85
- Freelancing: $0
- SEAM Publishing: $775
I’ve been pretty cautious to accept private advertising efforts due to Google’s algorithm changes. I accepted none on this site in the 4th quarter before I sold it. On my other site, I did accept two. It turns out that the food niche is a lot less profitable for private advertising than the personal finance niche. 🙁 Another $5 in CPM earnings.
The other downside to selling this site is the fact that the majority of my AdSense earnings came from here. I went from an average of $15 per month to an average of $3.50 per month.
Zero. Goose-egg. I don’t have a lot of freelance writing gigs; just my participation on Penny Thots. But somehow I managed to go an entire 3 months (August, September, and October) without contributing a single post. But with this site gone, I will be participating there much more. For more of my personal finance opinions, please visit that site.
SEAM Publishing made fair inroads at earning a grand this quarter. It has certainly been the most successful and profitable of my ventures in 2013. However, this number is a bit of a trick. In 2013, I made the business decision to use SEAM Publishing the banner for all of my online efforts. It rather makes sense for a publishing house to be the owner of a blog, right? So when I sold this site, the profit was attributed to SEAM’s bottom line.
2013 $3K Challenge Sponsors
Okay, $3K Challengers! How did you do for your first quarter? Enter your numbers in the comments below by Jan 10.