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December 2016 Monthly Income Report

in Income Reports

Monthly Income Report December 2016

Alrighty my friends! Christmas season is over and as you can imagine, a big chunk of revenue was flushed into the accounts during the most lucrative time of the year. That being said, I must admit that it surely wasn’t my best Christmas and I’m actually a bit disappointed. The numbers could have easily been higher and there were no particular indications that this was to be expected, other than that November was also a bit a of slow month. Don’t be fooled by the earnings you see in the table. The actual income is only paid out in January, so the bulk will show up there…like it did in January 2016.

But you know what? I have far more interesting news to report and truth be told, I’m a bit nervous. Actually, I’m super nervous. In the early days of the new year I finally made a big decision that I had been contemplating for a really long time. But before we get to that, let’s talk some numbers.

Year-on-Year Performance

Based on my own sales tracking, December saw EU gross sales which went up by 88.6% versus the previous month (41.2% up on the US marketplace) but 26.8% lower than the same period last year. That’s good, but not awesome. I remember having crazy 14.000 EUR months a few years back. Those days are long gone….primarily because I haven’t been putting as much effort into the business as I didn’t back then. Overall I’ve ended the year on par with 2015, which is ok given the little time I’m put in.

Redbubble Sales

Redbubble was a small revelation in December. I only adjusted the prices in early December, but the increased markup barely had any impact on the number of sales. It simply increased how much my cut was. This is absolutely great because I wasn’t overwhelmingly happy with Redbubble given the amount of effort you needed to put in. But this is a very interesting development and rest assured, I will continue to push in this space, because 230 EUR is a nice little extra income and there’s a lot more potential. I know this was around Christmas time, but the overall trend remained even after the main shopping spree.

The Big News: Flying Solo

Yep, you guess it right. I quit my job. Or to be more precise, I told my employer that I will be leaving the company by end of June. The decision didn’t come easy and it took A LOT of hard thinking and a lot of chat with friends and family, but I’ve finally decided it’s time to go and fly solo.

Although it was only a matter of time and I kind of saw it coming, I must admit that I absolutely terrified….which is kind of a good thing. I’m leaving behind a very comfortable and fairly sizeable monthly pay-check plus benefits. And yet, it feels like the right decision. You’ve got to try it some day or you’ll end up regretting it some day. What I’m really looking forward to is being able to fully pursue all the ideas that I have in mind, including setting up a few of the courses that I’ve really wanted to set up for The T-Shirt Academy since early 2014.

I also really look forward to interacting with many of you on more regular basis. I know a lot of you are out there and are wondering how on earth can you get your t-shirt business off the ground to a point where you can do your own thing. I know the feeling and that’s what I want to achieve with all of you. I’ll be reaching out to many of you in order to understand what you biggest challenges are and where you need some desperate help.

2017 is going to be awesome! 🙂

Monthly T-Shirt Income Report

I’m looking forward to reading your questions and comments. If there’s any particular position that you would like to know more about, then let me know and I will try to clarify.

EUR USD Last Month
Spreadshirt Marketplace EU 2,845.91 3,000.44 1,854.85
Spreadshirt Marketplace US 449.31 473.71 359.89
Redbubble Commissions 229.44 241.90 71.44
Teezily Commissions 60.20 63.47
Miscellaneous Hosting Services to 3rd Parties
Expense Positions EUR USD Last Month
BoxCryptor (Annual Subscription
Deutsche Post (Shipping Costs)
Digital Goods (Themes, Templates etc) 20.00
Dropscan (Mail Scanning Service) 11.53 12.16 18.96
Facebook (Advertising)
GitHub (Micro Personal Plan) 6.64 7.00 7.00
Google API Services (mostly translation) 0.19 0.20
Google Drive 1.89 1.99 1.97
Google for Work (Monthly Subscription) 13.15 13.86 12.96
HostGator (Web Hosting Services) 11.07 11.95 11.95
JetBrains PHP Storm (Monthly Software Subscription) 8.90 9.38 9.61
Laracasts (Monthly + Lifetime Membership) 219.00
MailChimp (Monthly Subscription) 9.48 10.00 10.00
Namecheap (Domain Name Registration Fees) 281.79 297.09
Noun Project (NounPro Subscription) 9.48 9.99 9.99
PureVPN (Annual Subscription)
Shopify Basic Subscription (for www.gocaptain.com) 27.51 29.00 29.00
Xing (Quarterly Subscription) 25.08 26.44
Tax Adviser (Quarterly Booking) 150.00 158.15
Net Operating Profit (excl. all taxes) 3,027.89 3,192.31 1,955.73
Tax Elements EUR USD Last Month
VAT on Income 540.72 570.08 352.42
VAT on Expenses 35.82 37.76 3.98
Net VAT to be paid to the Tax Man 504.91 532.32 348.44

*EUR/USD Exchange Rate for December 2016: 1.0543

10 comments… add one
  • chris

    Thanks for making all this information available.
    If you don’t mind me asking, about how many designs do you have to have to generate that income?

    I’ve built my own site on Wordpress with Woocommerce and a fulfillment company (a work in progress and uploaded to both Spreadshirts and RedBubble, have a 2-3 a day design habit and a lot of drive, but it would be nice to have an extra metric to measure against.

    • I currently have 5.600 designs online, but that is by no means the benchmark. I know people who need twice as many designs to reach that income and some achieve it with far less. Generally it really comes down to various factors and the revenue lifetime of a design is also limited.

      Please don’t feel intimidated by the numbers! Even though it really is a numbers game, the number of designs you have isn’t necessarily the key metric.

  • David

    Hello,

    There seems to be a problem for the payment of commissions this month in France on Spreadshirt, I wanted to know if it is a general problem or just in France because of the tax identification that was put in place in January.

    We are several in France not to have reached our payment on bank account note.

    • Yes, everyone is experiencing the same issue. Don’t worry. As far as I know they’re working on a solution and everyone will get their payouts in due time.

  • Jim J

    Hey mate,

    Great job and good luck with the future. I was wondering if it’s possible to show how your income vs designs increased over the years – a rough estimate would be great i.e. what was your income in yrs 1,2,3,4 etc vs the number of designs in each year.

    • Hi Jim, thanks for your question. Have you had a look at the income reports page? It shows a graph of how my earnings of developed over years. I don’t it necessarily tells the story that you were hoping to hear, but there definitely is a correlation. The big increase I had in the beginning (2011/2012) was mainly driven by new designs. However, designs have a lifecycle and POD platforms also makes changes, which ultimately leads to a decrease of the earnings per design. So yes, there is a correlation, but you also need to keep working to maintain the levels you had.

      • Jim J

        Sorry, I’ve seen your income report, just wanted an idea of what it would look like next to some rough data of the number of designs ex: 100 designs = $300 p/m, 1000 designs = $700 p/m etc.

        • Hmm, I see what you mean. But I’m afraid it’s not that simple because I also adjusted the commission levels over time. Maybe it would help you if you looked at the graph this way: I haven’t really added any new designs since the end of 2013. All the income I generate right now is with roughly the same amount of designs I had back then (~5.600). The rest simply math. That being said, you can really influence the sales with a lot of factors like price, keywords and social media promotion. I’ve seen people do as much revenue as I do with far less designs.

          • Jim J

            5,600 is huge, did you design them yourself? I can’t imagine how you did that during your spare time >_<

          • I guess it is and no, of course I didn’t create them all by myself. I actually outsourced a fair share of my designing process via UpWork in order to keep up the pace and more importantly, free up time for my private life.

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