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My First Check From Google

my first check from google adsense

Woohoo!!! I received my first check from Google!

I added Adsense in February and made $3.44 that month. At that rate it would take quite a while to cross the $100 threshold. Fortunately, we kept working on the blog and was able to gain more readers and increase our earning from Google every month. Thank you readers for supporting Retire By 40!

I made a graph to show the monthly and total earning from Google Adsense. It looks like the monthly earning will stabilize at around $50/month for now. I would be quite happy to get a Google check every other month or so. That total income graph looks great and I hope it can continue that exponential shape. 😀

google adsense monthly and total earning

Recently I’ve been making some money with direct advertising, but I still like Google Adsense for passive income. It’s completely passive so I don’t have to do anything extra to generate this income. Well, I tweaked the ads here and there, but it’s pretty stable now. $50/month passive income is actually quite good in the grand scheme of things. If I want to make $50/month with a 12 month CD at my credit union (0.8% interest), I would have to use $75,000! I wonder if I stop blogging, would the Adsense income continue? Does anyone know the answer?  In any case, we’ll continue to add new content and increase our exposure.

Improvement Plan

  • Improve SEO. Currently, I set title tag and meta description on every posts and try to link internally as much as possible. I’m sure I can improve though. I need to research a bit more and work on this.
  • Continue to add content. The more content a site has the more chances a page will show up on a search engine and the more chance the ad will get a click.

It’s quite gratifying to get a check from Google.

Readers, do you have any suggestion for improving Adsense earning?

2015 Update: Wow, I’m generating $2-3,000 per month from online advertising. I will break down the online income and expenses in our monthly newsletter so if you’re curious, sign up with our email list. You can also get a quick view from my monthly cash flow update.

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. He spent 16 years working in computer design and enjoyed the technical work immensely. However, the job became too stressful and Joe retired from his engineering career to become a stay-at-home dad/blogger at 38. Today, he blogs about financial independence, early retirement, investing, and living a frugal lifestyle.

Passive income is the key to early retirement. This year, Joe is increasing his investment in real estate with CrowdStreet. He can invest in projects across the U.S. and diversify his real estate portfolio. There are many interesting projects available so sign up and check them out.

Joe also highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. He logs on to Personal Capital almost daily to check his cash flow and net worth. They have many useful tools that will help DIY investors analyze their portfolio and plan for retirement.

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{ 79 comments… add one }
  • Zach May 19, 2013, 9:05 am

    Hello I just want to know, how can you get Google ad sense to send a check to your home. I am new to blogging and got a 10 dollar domain a year from Google. I was hoping by having ads eventually the site would pay for it self and more. I updated my Google ad sense info and only see their is a bank card only option. Can I not get a check like I see above in your photo. Nice blog BTW. I plan to blog and have it pay for it self and possible save a couple bucks a month. I am 18 now so saving a couple bucks a month would make me have a lot of money in the future. Also, please check out my site and tell me what you think. If you know things about technology please tell me and I well let you post about it as well. Are you using Blogger by any chance?

    • retirebyforty May 20, 2013, 2:52 pm

      Sorry, but I’m not sure how to set it. Can’t you email support? The last time I used Google Adsense, they default to checks.
      I’m not with them now so I’m not sure how they do things.

  • nitin gupta March 12, 2012, 3:29 pm

    I recieved my adsense check last Month, it’s really very difficult to sustain website, their are many issues, scratch from getting the account, to maintain hosting. and lot’s more

  • AM February 6, 2012, 5:21 am

    Today I got my adsense check. I started my blog in 2008 but in the starting I did not work on it. But from 2011 I am continuously working on it.

  • karaoke free download January 3, 2012, 9:16 pm

    Just keep working on it. My website could barely earn 1 dollar for six montsh but now, it earns an average of 3.45$ daily. That site is already 1 year old.

  • matt December 16, 2011, 11:44 am

    Did you ever figure out why they banned you? Of have any ideas why they may have?

    • retirebyforty December 16, 2011, 1:20 pm

      Unfortunately, I have no idea why they banned the site. They don’t give any information and was very obscured. That’s one of the many things I am finding out about Google. 🙁

  • matt December 16, 2011, 1:37 am

    how many posts on a 1 blog do you this it will take to reach 100 dollars a month?

    • retirebyforty December 16, 2011, 8:51 am

      It took me 5 months to get the first $100. After that it took 2 months, but then Google banned me. 🙁

  • bobola November 20, 2011, 2:34 pm

    Congratulations…am expecting my first check this month..started blogging last year. Going to 2 years now. Congratulations once again.

    • retirebyforty November 21, 2011, 12:35 pm

      Thank you, but Google banned me. 🙁
      It seems like banning someone after the first check is quite common.

  • Business ideas and tips November 20, 2011, 7:56 am

    Congrats my man i got my first adsense check in august 2010 after 10 months of blogging and have been receiving checks almost every 3 months ever since. I know how it feels to get ur first check. Thumbs up

  • mele mel October 26, 2011, 7:29 am

    Hi, you said you made over 100 dollars and you were sent a check? are you in the US? reason I ask is because I made over 10 dollars (31.00) so far with adsense on my blogs, but I haven’t gotten a check yet. I thought they would start paying once you reach over 10 dollars. and yes I cleared everything for my payment to be issued but I havent seen anything yet. So you have to make atlease 100 dollars to get a check?

    • retirebyforty October 26, 2011, 11:16 am

      In the US, Google will send you a check when you break $100. I’m not sure what the rules are for other countries.

  • Anderson Fan October 14, 2011, 6:19 am

    Congratulations. The first check is always so satisfying. It not only proves that your efforts are paying off, it also shows you that the potential is limitless. Keep working hard and continue to build those paydays!

    • retirebyforty October 14, 2011, 9:06 am

      Thank you! I appreciate the support.

  • Peter October 7, 2011, 10:10 am

    Congrats on hitting that first check – I know this post is a month or two old now, but thought I’d chime in anyway.

    That first check is always the hardest to get, and it seems like it takes forever. I got my first check way back in 2008, and I think it may have been a bit easier at that time to cash out. I cashed out in my 3rd full month of blogging, and I’ve made at least $100/month every month since. I know some bloggers who before Google’s Panda update were making $7-8000/month from adsense – not as much now. But it can be a big income stream.

    The keys to adsense I think are having a lot of search visitors (they’re the most clicky), and always knowing what kinds of topics are the best for creating adsense income. Hook your adsense and analytics accounts together and you’ll be able to see what posts are making the most income, and what topics pay the best. Then write more of those topics.. 🙂

    Best of luck on cashing out every month now!

    • retirebyforty October 7, 2011, 8:57 pm

      Wow, $7-8,000/month is huge! Last month we almost made $100 so hopefully we’ll hit it soon.

      • Peter October 12, 2011, 12:59 pm

        Yup, $8,000 is huge! (disclaimer, I’ve never made that much. My best month ever was around 3k)

  • The Wealthy Canadian September 10, 2011, 6:25 pm

    Congrats on earning your first Google cheque!

    That’s a massive improvement from February – great stuff 🙂


    • retirebyforty September 12, 2011, 9:55 am

      Thank you! The first check was great and it seems like the 2nd check will arrive much quicker (2 months.) It’ll be even better if we can break $100/month.

  • Kellen September 5, 2011, 11:15 am

    Congrats on the adsense earnings! $50/month is nothing to sneeze at. I’ve had adsense for a few months now, but the $100 mark still seems miles away. I have a decent cost per click so the months where I do get a couple of clicks I can get $10 – $14, but that doesn’t seem to be trending upwards (yet!).

    • retirebyforty September 5, 2011, 10:33 pm

      I think once you hit a certain number of posts – 100? Then you’ll have more chances to get Google SE traffic and the adsense revenue should go up. Keep working at it! 🙂

  • Teresa Schultz September 5, 2011, 4:47 am

    It took me about 15 months to get to my first Adsense check, so well done on getting your first one in much less time than that! It’s a great feeling. This morning I went to the bank to deposit my 10th Adsense check 🙂 Just continue blogging, with perhaps a little more attention to keywords and search volume for those keywords, and your earnings should not only stay similar each month, but actually grow each month – like mine are a bit. Before you know it, you’ll be receiving your second check. Keep up the great work.

    • retirebyforty September 5, 2011, 10:31 pm

      15 months is a long time to wait! I’ll work on the keywords and search volume. I haven’t paid much attention to that actually. Thanks!

  • Jen @ Master the Art of Saving September 3, 2011, 8:07 pm

    Congrats on getting your first check. 🙂 $50 a month is pretty groovy.

  • Dividend Mantra September 3, 2011, 10:35 am

    Congrats on the first Adsense check! I just received my first direct deposit from Google very recently as well. It feels good. 🙂

  • Khaleef @ KNS Financial September 2, 2011, 11:59 am

    I remember those first few months with AdSense. Congratulations on getting your first check! I would just tell you to see what keywords are earning you the most money and focus on those. It’s great to use on-page SEO techniques on all your posts, but don’t focus on the keywords that aren’t worth much money, or those that have too much competition.

    • retirebyforty September 2, 2011, 9:56 pm

      Thanks for the tips. I haven’t done much keyword research yet, but it looks like something that will help a lot. I’ll work on it.

  • John Phung September 2, 2011, 5:39 am

    Congrats! I remember when I got my first check from Google…it just doesn’t seem real until you cash in the check 🙂

    Also, now you can tell others that you work for Google lol

    • retirebyforty September 2, 2011, 9:54 pm

      Thanks! It was great to get a check from the big G.

  • Buck Inspire September 1, 2011, 11:17 pm

    Congrats Joe on your hard work! Pretty cool. If I ever get mine, I might have to frame it, haha!

    • retirebyforty September 2, 2011, 9:54 pm

      Maybe just frame a copy. 🙂

  • Tim @ Faith and Finance September 1, 2011, 8:43 pm

    That’s awesome! I got my first ‘check’ this summer, but it was directly deposited to my bank…didn’t even notice it until a week after the fact, but I was stoked! Would have been cool to get an actual check, but I’m happy either way.

    Keep it up and you’ll see even more checks. My tip: experiment with the small text boxes on the sidebar. You might be surprise with the response.

    • retirebyforty September 1, 2011, 11:08 pm

      Thank you for the tip! I’ll install who sees ads and put a side bar ad up when I have a little time.

  • Elle September 1, 2011, 12:45 pm

    Congrats; the only suggestion I’d give is using a plugin like ozh-who-sees-ads to show a block ad before posts only to search visitors. Regular readers won’t see it, but you’ll still get AdSense income.

  • Jesse @ BP September 1, 2011, 9:04 am

    Congrats! That first check serves to validate your work and can be quite the motivator!

  • Joe Plemon September 1, 2011, 8:46 am

    Congrats on that first check. Keep on posting great content and your Adsense income will continue to grow. Although it has taken me a while (I have been blogging two years) I recently went over $100 in a month for three months in a row. Very exciting.

    • retirebyforty September 1, 2011, 9:52 am

      That’s great to hear. It would be really nice to get a check every month instead of having to wait for 2-3 months.

  • Jason September 1, 2011, 7:03 am

    This is very inspiring, considering I just begand blogging myself. Thanks for sharing the news, and here’s to many more checks from Google!

  • youngandthrifty August 31, 2011, 8:18 pm

    Congrats Joe!!! I remember when I got my first cheque, it was a GOOD feeling (especially after getting $0.05 a month when I first started).

    I think that if you forgot about your blog, the clicks will still come if you have good SEO and some key words.

    Most of my adsense income is from 5-10 key posts (from 1-2 years ago) and I have like 250 posts.

    • retirebyforty September 1, 2011, 9:52 am

      Thanks Everyone!!! That first check feels like such a big hump to get over, but I’m pretty sure it will be much easier from now on.

  • Sunil from The Extra Money Blog August 31, 2011, 4:06 pm


  • Squirrelers August 31, 2011, 2:48 pm

    That’s great! I know the feeling, it’s fun to see the first check. Hope you get many more in the months ahead.

  • Snob on a Budget August 31, 2011, 2:19 pm

    Congrats! I am just starting with ads, at the moment I am trying to increase my traffic.

  • 20 and Engaged August 31, 2011, 1:17 pm

    Congratulations on your first Google check! Here’s to more checks to come!

  • krantcents August 31, 2011, 12:57 pm

    Congratulations! I am still in the pennies per day mode.

  • SB @ One Cent At A Time August 31, 2011, 12:42 pm

    Joe I sent you an email, check that please.

  • Andy Hough August 31, 2011, 11:11 am

    If you stopped blogging you would still make money from Adsense but it would likely decline quite a bit. It is hard to know though. I have one site I haven’t updated all year that made $20 this month which was its high for the year.

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 12:46 pm

      That’s nice to know. This is why a niche site is probably a better idea than a blog – less work…

  • Forest August 31, 2011, 11:09 am

    Huge congratulations, that first cheque is an amazing feeling 🙂

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 12:46 pm

      Thanks! It’s pretty awesome. 😀

  • Hunter @ Financially Consumed August 31, 2011, 11:05 am

    Well done! I’ll happy dance when I get my 1st check from Big G.

  • Jeff @ Sustainable life blog August 31, 2011, 9:48 am

    COngrats – this is awesome, everyone is making so much money. Hopefully your second check wont take nearly as long as the first!

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 12:45 pm

      I hope the 2nd check will only take two months! 🙂

  • Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter August 31, 2011, 9:43 am

    Congrats. I too am expecting my first google check in the mail any day now. It’s a great feeling isn’t it.

  • Sustainable PF August 31, 2011, 9:35 am

    Congrats! We recently got our 2nd check!

    Since most adsense income comes from search engine visitors I think your site would still make money. It would go down a bit to adjust for the odd referral click you get i’d think.

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 12:44 pm

      How long did the 2nd check take? 1-2 months? SPF is really popular too so I imagine you would get a check every month soon.

  • Suba August 31, 2011, 9:01 am

    Congrats!!! How much ever we hate google, doing pretty much nothing and getting a check is awesome, isn’t it? I am sure it will grow faster from now on as the archives grow.

    First 2 payments I got a check in March this year, I made a copy, scanned it into pdf AND took a photo, lol. I went overboard but that was the first time I made money out of my regular job.

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 9:31 am

      Haha, I know how you feel. I should have taken a photo too, but I deposited it right away. 😀

  • MoneyCone August 31, 2011, 7:48 am

    Congratulations RB40! That is indeed awesome! Google direct deposits my payments – I’ve never seen a Google check before!

  • Financial Success for Young Adults August 31, 2011, 7:03 am

    Congrats! This is awesome. I actually just realized that I am less than 20 bucks away from my first check. It’s exciting! Especially since, like you said, you don’t have to do much, it’s very passive.

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 9:30 am

      I was very happy to cross that $100 threshold. Hope you get your check soon!

  • Lisa @ Cents To Save August 31, 2011, 6:35 am

    I am striving to earn more than a few pennies a day. 🙂

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 9:29 am

      Really? You probably need to make the ads more in-your-face. I think there is a plugin to select who to display ads to. You can display big ads to search engine traffic for example. I need to do this at some point too.

  • Niki August 31, 2011, 4:04 am

    That’s fantastic.

    I am hovering at about $20 a month. It’s better than the cents I was making a couple months ago.

    • retirebyforty August 31, 2011, 9:27 am

      You’ll get to $50/month in no time! 🙂

  • cashflowmantra August 31, 2011, 3:25 am

    Congratulations on that first check. I wish I had some sort of brilliant insight into Google AdSense but I don’t. I would like to get more involved with direct advertising but haven’t a clue on how that works.

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