Online Passive Income Report for February 2017

So I’m a couple months behind here on posting income updates. I’ve been super busy launching a new physical product and switching the WordPress theme to a new one on of my authority websites — a huge effort that along with customizing the theme, required going through something like 500 posts and making various changes to each post.

So I’ve been busy.

The Huge Amazon Associate Commission Fee Change

There’s also been a significant shakeup in the affiliate world — one that has dropped my income quite a bit (I’ll post about this next time). Basically, Amazon made a broad change to their affiliate payout rates.

Previously, you could move from the basic 4% commission up to 8.5 percent across most categories (sans the fixed commission niches like TV’s and Laptops) if you had enough affiliate sales.

This rewarded high volume affiliates with the maximum commission.

Unfortunately, Amazon changed the volume-based tier March 1 and moved to a fixed rate commission. While a few categories saw an increase to 10%, most categories saw a drop.

Here’s the new affiliate structure:

While this may not seem impactful if you are not earning with Amazon yet, the change is huge.

Gone is the blanket 8.5 percent you could get before by selling enough. Now, no matter how many items you sell, you’ll be capped at the fixed rate.

I personally saw an 8.5 percent, the rate I was getting, to 4.5 percent for many of my niches.

SO I took a big hit over March with this change (more on this next income report).

On the positive, I’ve been working trying to make up the difference by upping my Adsense earnings and finally targeting affiliate offers.

The name of the game is to adapt and survive. The only thing  that doesn’t change is change. I’ve seen big shakeups many, many times already, so I am not at all surprised.

The good news is I have a diverse revenue stream (though the change still hurts).


I’ll be posting both months (Feb and March) at the same time to catch up.


February 2017 Earnings


February Affiliate Offer Earnings



Comments: Finally starting to target some key affiliate offers for the first time in 3 years. I found one offer that seems to work with one of my sites and I put it on. This offer, which I put mid way through Feb made 171 CAD. Some potential here. March I really start to target affiliate offers.




February Adsense Earnings



Comments: Adsense earnings are slowly on the rise month, in part because several of my sites are getting more traffic.



February Direct Ad Sales Earnings


Comments: I had a big ad sale for $1800 where a client bought out a banner ad spot for 1 full year. This is a one time deal, so I can’t sell that spot again for a year.




February Earnings


Comments: is on the rise due to seasonal changes and several of my authority sites are gaining more traffic. I have been adding more and more content trying to increase overall long tail searches.



February Amazon Associate Earnings


Comments: This is the LAST month before Amazon made sweeping changes to their affiliate commission structure, essentially slashing the commission rates by 50% for some niches. I’ll talk about this later, but the changes reduce earnings between 20 to 45 percent for most affiliates.




Total Online Earnings for February 2017

$23,305.42 USD


(vs $27, 102.57 in January 2017)

(vs $23, 338.73 in December 2016)

(vs $20, 582.37 in November 2016)

(vs $20,061.99 in October 2016)

(vs $16,579 in September 2016)

(vs $15,043 in August 2016)

(vs $14,298.79 in July 2016)

(vs $12,226  in June 2016)

(vs $14,498 in May 2016)

(vs. $9,438.7 in April 2016)

The Final Word

Another great, great month. Less than the crazy January month, but nearly the same as Decemeber 2016. So the THIRD highest month ever.

I left out reporting on a few affiliate programs and Disqus earnings because those programs only made a couple dollars. But if I counted them, I made about the same as I did December.

Some one time boosts such as a direct ad sale for a year that brought in $1800 that boosted earnings. Saw a bit of a pick up with; Adsense moved up slightly; affiliate offers showing potential now that I just started to test out offers on some of my sites.

However, this is the last month under Amazon’s original commission rates. The next month (March), they moved to a fixed rate by category with most categories between 4.5 and 7 percent. This hits me since several of my  main niches move from 8.5 down to 4.5.

How much did I get hit?

Look at the next month’s report to find out.

Because Amazon commissions have gone down, I’m looking at other ways to make up for the loss, such as boosting Adsense and targeting affiliate offers on several of my big sites.

Other then this, I’m also working on going live with my brand of products — a process that’s taken a year, from sourcing the product to now finally getting ready to open the online store. This will be interesting to see — we go live around May 2017, so I’ll report on this new revenue stream then.

Go Make money online.

Now to post the next month’s income report!


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