Adsense Goals

There are plenty of income streams available on the Net with Adsense being the most popular and easiest to get started with. One of the things I’ve found that has really helped me grow my Adsense earnings is the setting of goals, I didn’t set goals at the start which is probably one of the reasons I got off to a somewhat slow one.

A chart clearly displaying your goals with dates is a great motivator. With my goal chart I have it clearly visible at home, this serves as an ongoing reminder and was a great motivator in the early days when friends snigger at the low earnings.

This is my chart so far.

Goal Target Date Date Reached
$1 Day Sometime in 2004 27th September 2004
$10 Day Sometime in 2004 2nd December 2004
$100 Month Sometime in 2004 November 2004
$500 Month Sometime in 2005 August 2005
$25 Day Sometime in 2005 18th August 2005
$1,000 Month Sometime in 2005 November 2005
$50 Day Sometime in 2005 16th September 2005
$2,000 Month March 2006 May 2006
$75 Day April 2006 21st April 2006
$100 Day May 2006 21st April 2006
$3,000 Month May 2006 June 2006
$150 Day 7th June 2006
$4,000 Month July 2006 June 2006
$200 Day 27th June 2006
$5,000 Month August2006 July 2006
$300 Day November 27th 2006
$6,000 Month September 2006 August 2006
$8,000 Month November 2006 December 2006
$400 Day December 11th 2006
$10,000 Month December 2006 March 2007
$12,000 Month August 2007
$500 Day
$15,000 Month December 2007

As you can see I missed certain goals, jumped past others and still have more to reach (many more which I’ve not listed here) but putting the goals down in black and white has really helped me. The year 2005 was a learning year for me (forums, blogs, experimentation, etc. ) and I started setting proper goals and working towards them in 2006.

What are your goals for the remaining half of the year?

About Al Carlton

Al quit the 9 to 5 rat race in January of 2007, before then he was a software engineer and systems architect of financial system. Nowadays Al spends the days running his various businesses and experimenting with different ideas and opportunities.
Al can be found on twitter at AlCarlton.


  1. My next goal is to make enough to cover the mortgage each month + insurances associated with the house. I have that goal set for October 2007.

    You mentioned the friends who sniggered (I have those friends too). What do they say now? My friends went from sniggering to asking to help. LOL. They never show commitment though so I never take them up on the offer.

    • Most of them don’t comment on the fact anymore, funnily enough. The $1 a day mark was big thing for me as that’s when I knew this Internet business thing could really work.

      • I was just thinking that $1 a day seemed very little, but then realised that my adsense income is actually lower than that, most of my sites are affiliate based though, but I am currently working on a few related sites that will be mostly monetised with adsense.

        • Nowadays a $1 a day seems very little but when you first start it’s a great first goal. My way of thinking was if I can make 1 then I can make 10 and then 100. So it all started with that first $1 goal. Looking back I could of started earlier, as when I first applied for Adsense I was turned down and didn’t re-apply for another year or two. Hmmmm I don’t think I should think on that one,

        • The $1 mile stone was a nice one to pass. I wasnt too bothered about the 2, 3, 4 and 5 as they were not as exciting. $10 was cool as well as $20.

          Looking back $1 seems very small, but when you first start and see $1 daily it is a good inspiration.

  2. Sorry for the second comment but I thought of a question.

    When you set goals, did you also set a plan on how to achieve them? For example, promoting the site, advertising, posts per day, hiring help, finding other revenue sources etc… Or did you just crack on with out a plan and it fell in to place?

    • Those goals were purely for Adsense, I have other goal sheets for different sources and life overall. In the early stages of my goals I’d just work harder and post more if I though a target was going to be missed. Nowadays I do base it a lot more on traffic goals.

  3. Al do you separate AdSense income derived from AdWords or just lump it all together ?

    • I don’t use Adwords to promote any of my Adsense enabled sites. I do use Adwords to promote some of my affiliate sites but that’s not included here at all.

      • It’s a good thing you don’t drive traffic to your AdSense enabled sites with AdWords because Google will eventually kick you out. It’s happened to me and everyone who is counting on AdSense as their primary source of revenue should take a good look at their business model and ask themselves what they would do if it went away.

  4. I’ve reached $500 daily last summer, but then it dropped a LOT, now my goal is 200 per day, as currently its 100+.

    • My best day was $484 last December and since then it dropped to the mid $200s but is now up to the $350-$450 mark. I do find Adsense fluctuates a fair bit still but if you stick at it, with work you’ll get back to the same levels.

  5. How many sites do you need before you reach the $1000/month mark? Do you believe in having 1 big site, or many smaller sites?


    • If it’s popular enough you only need one. I have 1 biggish site but I also have ~20 other sites, some of which I hope will also become big.

  6. What % of adsense income comes from your bigger site?

  7. Great post. Could serve as a great motivator. I have question. Did you use this list for all of your sites or one list for each site?

    • The Adsense goals list is for all my sites.

      Nowadays I have 2 Adsense accounts, one for my own business identity and another for a separate business that Scott and I jointly own.

      • Another thing, when did you start? (SEO and webmaster stuff)

        And a question

        Will it take the same amount of time to achieve all those goals if you were to start over again? Considering the fact that the market has become more competitive.

        • I spent a lot of 2005 learning and really started trying to make money late 2005, early 2006.

          If I was starting over I’d expect to be quicker, yes it’s more competitive but I’ve learnt a fair amount over the last couple of years and if anything I reckon I was pretty slow reaching the 10K a month point. Nowadays I am trying to concentrate on my other income streams more.

        • 2005? Thats odd, because above you’ve mentioned 2004.

        • In 2004 it was really a case of sticking ads on an existing site that I had and watching what it did, I was learning in 2004 but it was 2005 when I really started to get stuck in.

  8. My goal at the moment is to get my adsense earnings back up to what they were, a staggering $2 a day. Even though I’ve added more sites I still rarely break $1 a day.

    My goal for the end of the year is to get to $10 a day.

  9. My goal is to make my first dollar online. I am trying to resist the urge to adsense my sites to early. Need to build some features before I do and gain more regular visitors. If I could reach $1/mo by end of year I would be pleased. I think of this as getting up to the plate to bat. Next would be $10/mo at first base for mid-08. Second base would be great for end of 08 with $100/mo. Finally making it to third base with $1000/mo by end of 08 seems very optimistic. I hesitate to think of making a home run by end of 09 but there it is in writing $10,000/mo.

  10. Ok Here is mine

    Goal Target Date Date Reached
    $20 Day Sometime in 2007
    $200 Month Sep-07
    $300 Month Dec-07
    $25 Day 1st Quarter 2008
    $500 Month Jun-08
    $50 Day 3rd Quarter 2008
    $1000 Month Dec-08

  11. Well for me at the moment it’s $100 a month when I want to monetize my website. I don’t use adsense so I go around selling advertising space privately which to me seems like a much more profitable. Is that true for every case?

    • Selling directly is often the best option as you’re then not paying a cut to a third party (like Google), it does depend on the site though. If you get a lot of varied traffic looking for different things I find it is better to use something like Google which can serve millions of different but relevant ads, but if you had a lot of traffic looking for one particular thing then selling the ad spot direct to an advertiser would probably be more profitable.

  12. Thanks for your advice Al, but what would you recommend for my site then?

    Adsense or private?

    • With that sort of niche you’ll always be better off doing private sales, ideally a fixed amount per month. Try to sell advertisements and rather than links. Links are easy to sell but advertisements that give your sponsors value are worth more in the long run, provided you can generate traffic.

      • What do you mean by advertisements rather than links?

        Like having a banner space dedicated to that person only? And only having just one of then? I don’t understand what you mean by advertisements.

        Regarding traffic, It has been growing steadily well for 1 year and 3 months old site. It’s hitting 160 uniques a day at the moment and 216 page view. Yesterday was a record with 609 page view (I don’t know what happened there)

        So would you kindly explain what you mean by advertisements?

        • An advertisement will send them traffic and hopefully sales. A link is just a link and when bought is generally for the SEO benefit. As Google doesn’t like the buying and selling of links it’s safer to sell advertisements IMO. An advertisment can always be an SEO friendly link so the buyer gets the benefit of both.

        • So what would a good example of an advertisment be?

          Because at the moment I am thinking it’s something that isn’t a link.

        • Advertisements are also links (normally), they can be banners, text boxes etc. I quite like the ones on the left of (Photo Editor Software) they have the benefit of SEO friendly links, and send traffic.

        • Sorry to sound so stuipedly dumb but let me see if I got this right now.

          An advertisment should be something SEO friendly that will tempt the user to go and check it out, this generating traffic to the advertiser?

        • No problem Abdul, I’m probably not explaining it very well. To me an advertisement should send traffic to the advertiser. If it’s SEO friendly then that’s an added benefit which you can charge for.

        • OK I see now.


          Final question

          Would this be considered SEO friendly if its for a rotational banner:

        • Not really as the link would be constantly changes, also many banners are displayed via javascript which is not SE readable.

        • This banner is displayed normally.

          I’ll try and get a way of getting a static one for say like a week/monnth

          thanks for all your advice and explaination

  13. i tend not to have Adsense goals, cause i focus a lot on traffic. So, i get as referrals the number of subscribers, and the number of uniques per day. Of course, these values fluctuate a lot, but the idea is to get a growing flow.

    After all, once you have the traffic and the community, you’ll also be able to get the money. ?

  14. Setting goals is the best way to go about achieving just anything, not just Adsense earnings. But I really like the whole thing of how you set your goals, and them worked hard on achieving them also. I wish I stuck to my goals like that too :p

  15. My first Adsense goal was to make $100 a month and I reached that in May 2007. Second goal was to hit $150 which I did July 2007.

    Now it’s August 2007 and I’m aiming for $200 and it seems to be achievable. Once that is done I’ll keep setting larger goals but for the year 2007 I hope to hit the $400 per month mark. It will require some hard work and some structuring from my part but I’m sure I can pull it off.

  16. Agree that we have to have a goal in any kind of business or we will just floating and fly away without direction. Anyway, it is required 4 years to reach $15K and that is amazing. You are my inspiration Man. Thanks a lot.

  17. Al,

    I’d love to know where you started. I’m currently going on the same journey — my goal is a steady $5 per day. Have you documented your early forays into the world of Adsense?

  18. It would be most useful and very inspirational.
    My current goal is a steady $1 a day on average.

  19. Where are you right now Al? Also, how practical have you found setting a goal like this? I mean adsense earnings are beyond our control. Has it influenced your strategy? has it stressed you out? Discouraged you?

  20. Adsense is the main revenue source for many personal sites. One day revenue up to $400 is really nice. Your adsense revenues in 2006 boost very fast.

  21. I just happened by this post while searching adsense. Aside from the goal setting (which I believe is the key), I just wanted to see what your totals are up to these days. Those are phenomenal numbers. Congrats.

  22. Thanks for the reminder Christina. It would definitely be great to get an update if possible.

    Mikael Rieck’s last blog post..Why the Recession Can Help You Retire Early

  23. very nice…….thanks…admin

  24. My goal at the moment is to get my adsense earnings back up to what they were, a staggering $2 a day. Even though I’ve added more sites I still rarely break $1 a day.

    My goal for the end of the year is to get to $10 a day.

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