Niche Sites are not a viable way to make money in 2022.
Affiliate Sites will not make you money in 2022.
Creating Content and Affiliate Sites is not worth your time in 2022.
There. I said it. And I’m sad about it.
But here is how I figured out that this is NOT a money-making endeavor in 2022 and will likely be even less of one in 2023, 2024, etc…
|Task||Hours/Week||Hours/Year||Gross Annual Income|
|Self-Employment Taxes & Healthcare||Net Annual Income||Net Hourly Wage||Accrued Hours Spent Year 1|
|Figuring out how to make a content site||40 (x4 weeks)||160||$30,000 ($2500/month x12 months)||SE Taxes: $4500; State Taxes: $1800; Healthcare Ins.: $2800||$20,900||$9.55/hour||2188|
|Writing content inclusive of images, seo, posting and research (4 hours/post)||12 (x52 weeks if shooting for 3 posts/week)||624|
|Technical management of basic site services (ad networks, affiliates, hosting, keyword research, emails, plug ins, email lists)||5 (x52 weeks)||260|
|Creation and management of socials (not including YouTube)||12 (x52 weeks)||624|
|Interaction and networking with site visitors (email replies, post replies, liking other people’s stuff, liking their comments on your stuff etc)||5 (x52 weeks)||260|
|Creation and documentation of standard operating procedures AND financials||5 (x52 weeks)||260|
If you are lucky and extremely disciplined with your time, you might make $9.50/hour during your first year as a Content and Niche Website Creator.
That is simply a showstopper for me since I could make $15/hour plus $7/hour in tips as a food runner, like my 16 year old son does.
Do not be fooled by the $10K/month stories. These stories are always legit, but if you break down the hours the person spent and spends creating and maintaining such a site, MINUS the costs associated with hiring the help required and the taxes and costs of being self-employed, you will see that $10K/month gross is likely $7k/month net at best. If you work as much as most site operators do (an average of 60 hours/week), then this does get you to the respectable salary of $29/hour. I’ve again never heard of someone making this type of NET monthly income in their first year with a site.
I do think there is more value in creating the asset of a site that you can sell as soon as possible.
If sites are being sold for a 40x multiple (40 times the amount they gross per month-this is IDEAL), then you could in theory sell a site that was consistently earning $2500/month for 2 years for $100,000. Again, the $100,000 would be taxed (at around 30%) and you would have a 10% broker fee, so that takes it down to $60,000 net profit. The hours that go into selling a site are significant. I would estimate it is around 120 hours of work to sell your site, in total, so if you are paying yourself the $20/hour wage of a food runner, subtract another $2400 out of the $60,000 net and you’re at $57,600 net profit. The site likely took you at least two years to create so divide that $57,600 by two and add $28,800 per year to your wages for year 1 and year 2. This would bring your net annual salary up to $49,700 for both years 1 and 2.
So if the stars align, you will surpass the $21/hour wage of my food-running 16 year old son, by having earned an average wage of just under $25/hour for the previous two years!
This is a pretty good hourly wage for a young adult. But I’m not a young adult. And the quality of life impact (hours and hours inside glued to a computer NOT moving and mostly sitting, the stress that accompanies having your income be unpredictable every month, no mental “time off”, constantly feeling like you should do more, working alone everyday all day) is not nearly worth $25/hour. I’d rather be a food-runner.