The cheeky truth is that you can make month with only one blog post, but based on my personal experience over the last three years blogging, you’ll want to publish at least 50 articles if you want to cross over the $100/month mark.
I’m going to walk through my time blogging, how many articles I’ve published and the income milestones I’ve hit (recently crossed $1,000 a month!).
Then we’ll look at a hypothetical path to $10,000 per month. One which I am planning to take over the next 3-4 years.
The Unsatisfying Answer
How many blog posts do you need to make money?
The unsatisfying answer (but the truthful one) is that you need only one blog post to make money. That’s really all it takes, but you won’t be quitting you day job after you write one article.
And writing one article is no guarantee that you’ll make any money.
That’s your one word answer to the question. But you already knew that. So let’s move on.
How Many Blog Posts Do You Need To Make $100/month?
The answer to questions like this are always going to be “it depends.” But I think we can find a better answer than that.
I want to estimate how many blog posts you would need ON AVERAGE to make $100/month.
In order to come up with this answer I’m making a few assumptions about the articles being written:
- Articles are being written on keywords with 3 or fewer serious competitors
- Articles are being written on keywords with at least 100 searches per month
- The writing is at least average quality and answers the search intent of the keyword
- Articles are between 800 and 2000 words
So basically my caveat is that you’re doing a reasonably good job of picking your topics and writing your articles.
With that in mind, I believe that on average you can make $100/month with 50 articles.
Timeline for making $100/month
I’m sure you already know that you don’t start making money the moment you publish an article. That’s just not the way it works for small time (and even most big time) bloggers. It takes time to reach your milestones.
So let’s assume you’ll be writing 50 articles, and you’ll be publishing one every 2-3 days.
Here’s what you’re timeline might look like:
|Month||# Articles||Monthly Income|
Based on my experience, if you wrote 50 articles in four months, and did a decent job monetizing those articles, then you could reasonably expect to be making $100 per month after about a year and a half.
Obviously, sometimes you would do better than this and sometimes you would do worse. But for a new blogger doing their very first site, I think this is a pretty reasonable goal/expectation.
Related Article: What’s a Good Average CTR in Google Search Console?
There are of course dozens of factors that can influence how much money you make, so don’t get to set on this metric. You’ll rarely hit it exactly, it’s just an estimate of the average monthly income you would make based on my own experiences.
Note: Another way to think about this is that you’re making $2/month for each article you write.
How Many Blog Posts Do You Need To Make $1,000/month?
$100 is great extra spending money, but if you want to pave the way to earning meaningful money with your blogging, then you will need to find a way to cross the $1,000/month threshold.
I’ve actually crossed mark this for the first time just recently, so I have some real world numbers I can bring to this.
When I crossed the $1,000/month mark I had a little over 400 articles published across three websites.
Here is what my progress looked like:
|Month||# Articles||Monthly Income||Comment|
|1||10||$0||Started first blog|
|16||105||$170||Worked on software*|
|32||450||$1000||First blog gets boost^|
* I am a software developer at my day job and I spent about 6 months researching and building software for my first blog. This ultimately ended up being a failure and I never made a single dollar from the software.
+ I purchased a website for approximately $12,000 that already had 200 articles published and was making around $300/month.
# I began hiring some freelance writers to up my article production. I also started a new site (that makes 3 total) that is around 6 months old now.
^ Around this time, some old articles on my first blog (published 16-18 months earlier) started getting significantly more traffic around this time, which boosted the earning from my first site significantly.
So this is roughly what my path to $1,000 a month looked like. It took me almost 3 years to get here.
Most of that $1,000 a month can be attributed to about 300 to 350 articles since about 100 of my articles were too new to really be getting significant traffic.
That means I’m earning somewhere between $2 per month and $3.50 per month for each article I’ve published.
I was brand new to blogging when I started almost 3 years ago, and I’ve made lots of mistakes along the way. One big one was to not publish anything for over 6 months while I worked on that software. But I made a lot of mistakes on picking article topics among other things.
I believe that $1,000 per month is completely possible for most hardworking bloggers with good writing skills on 400 articles.
Note: This comes out to about $2.50 per month for each article written. I believe that the more articles your write for a given site, the more profitable each article becomes. Basically, you’ll do better per article with 400 articles than 50 articles.
How Many Blog Posts Do You Need To Make $10,000/month?
$10,000 per month is my current goal. After about 3 years of blogging, publishing 250 articles, buying 200 articles and managing 3 sites, I believe I can reach this goal with about 3,000 articles across 3-5 sites.
So with this in mind I intend to get all three of my current sites at least to that 500 article mark. Then any sites that are performing well from a money standpoint I’ll try to get up to 1,000 articles.
If any aren’t meeting my expectations (at least $3/month for each article) then I’ll quit publishing content and move on to a new site.
Here is my expected timeline:
|Month||# Articles||Monthly Income|
|36 (3 years)||800||$1,500|
|48 (4 years)||1,500||$3,000|
|60 (5 years)||2,500||$5,500|
|72 (6 years)||3,500||$8,500|
|84 (7 years)||4,000||$12,000|
These are my goals for article production and my projections for monthly income. This is based on publishing about 2 articles a day for the next 2 years, then about 3 articles a day after that.
I expect to write about half of those articles myself and pay for freelance writers to do the other half.
These numbers are based on an expected profitability of $3 per month for each blog article I publish.
Besides Fat Stacks (Jon Dykstra) and Income School, another web publisher I’ve begun following is Anne from Yeys. She’s a bulk web publisher and publishes several hundred articles a month across several sites.
Ramblings and Lessons Learned
As I’ve begun mapping out my next several years of web publishing, I have started to reflect on some things that I’ve learned. Or at least some changes in the way I’m thinking about blogging for income.
- I’ve begun thinking about success in terms of articles published rather than monthly income. I consider each article written to add $2-3 per month to my income and just try to pump out as many articles as I possibly can.
- It’s important to have some idea of search volume when doing keyword research. I use Keywords Everywhere.
- Articles you write yourself will on average be far better than articles you pay someone else to write.
- I believe the most important part of blogging is keyword research. If you pick the right keywords, you will almost certainly do well.
- Whenever possible, I try to pick keyword clusters of at least 10 topics that can all interlink with each other. This has been working well for me. This also helps with paid writers because they can get comfortable with a particular format while they write 10-20 articles.
I try to write as many articles myself as I possibly can because those articles just perform better, and I do keyword research a few times a week. It’s OK to spend an hour researching keywords and come back empty because you will often hit these gold mines where you can easily get 10, 20, 30 and one time I got nearly 100 keywords in one cluster.
Yes, you can absolutely make money with only a single article, but in my experience you’ll want to publish at least 50 articles before you can reasonably expect to start making $100 a month.
It took me until around 400 articles published before I reached $1,000 per month, though I’m sure others have gotten there much faster.
And I’m working to publish over 3,000 articles over the next 3-4 years with the expectation that this will get me past the $10,000 per month threshold.