Online Income Report #041 – September 2015

Each month I publish a fully transparent income report which documents my online earnings. These income reports exist to demonstrate my progress, share my experiences, and motivate others who want to make money online.

Check out my online income report for September 2015.

daysoffWhat I Did In September

September was a good month, as always.

Book Updated

I published a new version of my book Making Money With HTML5 this month which introduces refreshed content, updated statistics, and brand new publishers/sponsors. This update is long-overdue and I’m excited to finally make it available.

To celebrate the launch, the book is currently on sale for 30% off. This promotion will be ending shortly.

Back To Work

After a few lazy months, I’m picking up the pace in preparation for the holiday season. HTML5 games are always in high demand around Halloween and Christmas. I still plan to limit my workload so that I don’t injure my wrist again, but this is definitely the time to sink some extra hours into my games.

I have also been busy working on my secret project which I plan to announce before the end of the year.

Other Stuff

I worked 92 productive hours in September and took 7/30 days off.

I’m currently playing Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, watching Mr. Robot, and Nightcrawler was the best movie I saw this month.


Platform Overview

Here’s a quick look at how my online platform performed during September 2015.


The games I publish were played 678,481 times (29,146,223 total).

Traffic to my HTML5 games dropped this month, but I should still reach 30 million total plays by November.


My websites were viewed 43,252 times (5,504,729 total) by 20,612 unique visitors.

Traffic to my websites sharply increased after I updated my book and the associated List of HTML5 Publishers & Sponsors, which is freely available to all.


I have a total of 34,377 subscribers across various platforms, up 1,778 from last month. My current Klout score of 52.51 places me in the top 10% of influential social media users.

Twitter – 22,823 (+1,519) ¹ ² ³
Facebook – 7,635 (+38) ¹ ²
Newsletters – 3,919 (+148)

Social media growth was exceptional this month, which is surprising because I haven’t been very active on Twitter lately. As I discussed in August, I have been doing a lot of “behind the scenes” work which isn’t interesting enough to share on social media.

You can subscribe to my newsletter at the end of this post.

Online Income Report

This month I dropped a big client that has been causing me problems all year. The partnership was immensely time-consuming and ultimately unprofitable, but now that I don’t have to deal with them I have been spending my time more wisely.


During September 2015 I earned $6,765 solely online ($233,934 total), up $5,328 from last month. My average income over the past 12 months is $5,053 so this was an above average month.


Great results! After updating my book Making Money With HTML5 it sold twice as well as it usually does, and I sold enough HTML5 games to make up for the past few months which have been slightly underwhelming. I sold two copies of my Mobility Engine, but unfortunately I didn’t take on any new clients for my HTML5 consulting service this month. That would have been the cherry on top.

What’s Next?

October will be much the same as September, except I will be doing less writing and more game development. This year has been filled with delays and setbacks, and while I still have a lot to get done, I’m confident that it will all work out just fine.

Thanks for reading!


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  • mary says:

    Hi Matthew – I am thinking of using html and my own server as my games contain video and take up a lot of memory. Is there a way to “lock” the web site so that one must buy the game to use it, or somehow to allow the player to play a few rooms and then pay?

    • Matthew says:

      Hi Mary – yes, you can implement a “site lock” mechanism. It is a fairly common feature. You can find more information about it with a quick search. I hope this helps!

  • Costa says:

    Hey Matthew, great job hustling to get great results as an indie. Two questions:

    1) How much income have you made solely from HTML5 games (not books or freelancing gigs) in the last 12 months? (trying to determine if this could eventually replace my day job)

    2) How long do you think we have before the HTML5 market becomes too saturated to make a living? (I’m wondering if we’re at the beginning or at the high point right now?)


    • Matthew says:

      Hi Costa.

      1) You’d have to check my last 12 income reports for the total HTML5 revenue. This year has been slower overall, but that’s mostly by my own choosing (New Year’s resolution was to work less hours).

      2) Market saturation still isn’t a major issue in my opinion but it’s difficult to predict when it will reach a boiling point; I’d bet that we have a few years yet. If anything, it feels like the growth of competition is slowing so it’s a great time to enter the market.

  • Lawrence says:

    Wow! What an awesome month Matthew! I love reading these every month and being inspired to keep at it. Thanks for sharing with us!

  • danyel says:

    I can only dream to reach to your blog financial results.

  • Victor says:

    Hey Matthew, I wonder how you make your art for the games: you do it all yourself?
    So you can code and make good art too, awesome!
    How did you approach learning to make game art? What tools do you use?
    Thanks a lot, from a BIG fan! You’re a personification of what I want to be someday!

    • Matthew says:

      I actually only do a small amount of the artwork in most of my games – I’m definitely not a very skilled artist. I prefer to hire professionals but it can be difficult to find designers that can accommodate an indie budget. That said, I do spend a lot of time organizing, editing, and implementing artwork.

  • Russell says:

    Hi Matthew,

    Very impressed, I enjoyed the story of how you got started (100% focus). But do you have any plans to build a business? What you’re doing now looks like freelancing, don’t work, don’t get paid. I had the same problem with web apps but now I’m trying to focus on building a SaaS business so I can get paid even when I can’t work (like a hand injury).

    Best of luck, loved the book.

    • Matthew says:

      I suppose it depends on your definition of a business. I certainly don’t see myself as a freelancer, as I only rarely do freelance work (maybe 1 project every 2 months). Most of my online income is derived from selling pre-existing products like many other businesses. Often, even when I don’t work, I can still make $2,000+ from passive income streams.

      Thanks for your comment, Russell.

  • tom says:

    I want to ask what are the necessary steps to initiate cooperation with publishers. You must first contact the publisher by email? …and then begin cooperation? or you must conclude a contract and which platform is for publishing games via publishers better (Unity3D – C#, Construct2 or GameMaker – HTML5) ?

    Thank you for your advice!

    • Matthew says:

      HI Tom – I recommend that you check out my book Making Money With HTML5 which answers all of those questions in detail. If you have any remaining questions after reading the book, you can Contact Me for personal assistance.

  • mary says:

    Thanks for the info!

  • mary says:

    Hi – so do you use HTML5 for your games instead of Game Maker now?

    • Matthew says:

      GameMaker Studio lets you export games to Windows, Mac, HTML5, and many other platforms. So it’s still my engine of choice.

      • mary says:

        So when you use HTML5, for example, you are directing an ipad user to a website instead of downloading an app? Or am I misunderstanding?

        • Matthew says:

          Yes, that’s right. HTML5 games are like Flash games in that regard, except they work on mobile devices too.

  • so encouraging

  • Victor says:

    Matthew, you said you sold the html5 games. How do the companies use the games they buy from others? Do they resell them or is it something else?
    Thanks for the post and it’s good to read you have a good month.

    • Matthew says:

      I don’t allow reselling or sub-licensing of my games. That is a very negative trend that a lot of developers are accommodating by distributing HTML5 games to companies such as Soft Games, Tresena, etc. Most companies will use the games as content for their gaming portals, or to promote their brand/product.

  • GinoFM says:

    Awesome! hi Mat! long I follow your blog! It is very inspiring! I ask you a question , how many hours per day do you spend to program or work? is a question that I have that would help me in mine :) I think , so follow up successes matt,Greetins!

    • Matthew says:

      You can calculate it using the data provided in this post actually. I worked 92 productive hours in September and took 7/30 days off which means I worked an average of 3.4 productive hours a day. I use an app called RescueTime to track how long I spend on specific activities that I classify as “productive”…so even if I spend 6 hours at a computer I’ll know exactly how much real work I got done.

  • Elie says:

    Great job and yes you do need rest from time to time.

  • james says:

    Nice! How many games did you sell/licensed?

    • Matthew says:

      10+ and I took on a small client job to produce a custom game too.