Thinking of Starting a Blog? Over the years, I’ve received many requests from folks for help on how to start a blog and how to make money blogging. That’s why I put together this on with updated information and links.
It includes step-by-step help on how to set up your blog, get started, and make money from blogging. ! You can also sign up for my free cheat sheet: .
In 2005, I discovered this thing called “blogging” and decided to try it out. I was a brand-new mom at the time, had recently quit working as a nanny, and was hopeful I could make enough on the side through online ventures to be able to replace my income and be able to stay home.
My husband was in law school and we were living on a beans and rice budget, trying to stay out of debt. We never, ever dreamed that my little blog idea would grow into what it has become.
In all honesty, when I started December212012.info, I remember telling people that I hoped to make a side income from it. I never could have imagined that by the end of 2008, !
And in all my wildest and craziest dreaming, I never would have envisioned that this blog would allow my husband to come home full-time, would provide the means for us to support ministries we love dearly (in the US, in the Dominican Republic, and in South Africa), and would enable us to provide incomes for our small (but amazing!) team.
How I Make a Full-Time Income from Blogging
Over the years, I’ve heard the question again and again and again: How do you actually ?? People seem intrigued by the idea that our family actually makes a really good income from this blog and other related online ventures.
In these monthly posts, I want to give you a comprehensive and detailed look at our different income streams and expense streams to give you a better idea of what’s working, what’s not working, and how I actually make money blogging.
I always find these posts fascinating and inspiring when I read them from other bloggers. It helps me to learn the real nitty-gritty details of what is and isn’t working, how bloggers are diversifying their income, and what they are experimenting with.
Some bloggers share these types of posts and include specific numbers of exactly how much they make every month. I’ve opted not to do that because I feel like sometimes people can get hung up on numbers and miss the bigger picture.
Instead, I want share detailed percentages of our income and expenses — not only will this give you a very accurate picture of our earnings, but it will be something that is relatable, no matter the size of your blog or the income you make.
My hope is that these detailed reports not only help give you a better picture of how I make money blogging, but I hope they inspire you with new ideas on how you can increase your income or improve as a blogger or online entrepreneur.
Ready for the numbers? Here’s our income and expenses report for the month of March:
Note: Some of the links below are affiliate links. All of the products listed below are products and services we’ve used before. If you have any questions about any of the income or expenses, you can leave a comment and we’ll do our best to reply.
All Revenue Streams
- Affiliate advertising (See a detailed breakdown of all affiliates we earned income from below.) — 53%
- Sponsored Posts — 29%
- Banner ads (We mostly work with and . .) — 12%
- Digital products (Sales of , , and ) — 4%
- Royalties — 2%
Want more information and ideas for making money from blogging? Sign up for my FREE cheat sheet:
Affiliate Revenue Streams Detailed Breakdown
Want to know more how affiliate programs work? Be sure to check out my post on How to Make Money Blogging.
- — 26%
- Humorous Homemaking Affiliate — 15%
- Other (Survey Sampling International, LLC, , 23 Publishing, SecureN1 Transactions, , , The Selling Family, , , , and more) — 10%
- — 8%
- Dixon Agency — 7%
- Surprise Ride — 6%
- Ultimate Bundles Marketing, Inc — 6%
- — 6%
- — 4%
- — 3%
- — 3%
- Plant Therapy — 3%
- — 2%
- — 2%
- Payroll expenses — 44%
- Retirement — 20%
- Web-based tools (, , , , , etc.) — 8%
- Subcontracted services — 6%
- Computer, hosting, Internet expenses — 6%
- Other (Office space rent, PayPal fees, shipping/postage fees, merchant account fees, bank service charges, utilities, travel expenses, wifi, etc.) — 5%
- Health insurance — 4%
- Professional fees (for our CPA, payroll management, etc.) — 4%
- Advertising and Promotion — 3%
Percentage of Income Versus Expenses
1. The Homemaking How-To Course + Facebook Group
You’ll notice the payment listed from Humorous Homemaking above. That was from promoting Stacy’s Homemaking How To course.
We did something different in promoting this course and it turned out to be a smashing success! I offered a Facebook Group and we all went through the course together. People were super excited about it and I loved going through the course with a number of you in the Facebook Group.
I’m hoping to take what I learned from running this promotion to implement it into other promotions in the future. Stay tuned!
2. Your Blogging Mentor
Okay, so the biggest development from this past month was that we officially launched + . The response has far exceeded what we’d hoped for and I am loving getting to share all sorts of lessons and tips related to blogging through that new blog + the and .
3. Instagram Stories
Oh friends! I have fallen in LOVE, total LOVE, with . Not only is it fun to get to share behind-the-scenes videos and photos from my day and to let me sort of quirky personality shine on , but I’m also loving getting to share daily pep talks and tips for bloggers over on the .
This Month’s Featured Question
This month’s featured question is from Rebecca, one of our readers at :
I was recently encouraged to share my blog on social media. I’ve been writing there for months but have not wanted to share it for two reasons. First, I am terrified because social media is basically a stomping grounds for offenses. The person that encouraged me to share it helped me see past this first one.
Second, I have kept it private for the reason that this is real life and my posts are irregular. Now I feel the day I’ve dreaded has come and honestly feel God has asked me to take this step. And even though I am still terrified and still have days and maybe weeks I don’t post, I’m ready to step forward.
What would your advice be for someone in my position? How do you “introduce” a blog on social media?
This is a fantastic question, and one that many new bloggers face. While posting regularly is important, sometimes you have to work up to that. Here is the advice I offered to Rebecca on how to start your public social media profiles for your blog (even if you aren’t posting regularly … yet!):
Do you feel like what you have to share would bless and impact others? If so, then by not sharing it, you’re not stewarding what God has given you to share, right?
Also remember that you have something valuable and important to share — something others need to hear. Let this fuel your passion and motivate you to post. The world needs your voice.
Starting from this frame of mind really helps me. It’s not about me; it’s about blessing and helping and inspiring other people — and using the gifts and skills God has given me to impact others.
Now, that said, I’d recommend setting up separate social media for your blog and sharing new blog posts there. I know this is more work, but here’s why I think it’s important to have separate social media for your blog: It allows those who really want to read what you have to share to follow you and for you to freely share your posts there — without having to worry that you are annoying people who don’t really want to follow your blog or be notified when you have new blog posts up.
You don’t have to set up all the different forms of social media (Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.). Just pick one to start out with and focus on that. I’d suggest picking the one that you either feel the most comfortable with or the one that makes the most sense for the audience you are seeking to reach.
Then, once you have set up the separate social media, invite those who follow you on social media to come follow you over on your blog-specific social media platform(s). Let them know why you’re setting it up, what they can expect, and why you’d love for them to follow you.
You can occasionally mention your blog on your personal social media posts — when you have a post you’re really excited about or when you’re launching a new product or have something else to share that you think everyone who knows you personally would love to find out about. However, I recommend doing this sparingly… say no more than once a month or every other month.
Highly Recommended Blogging Resources
- by Ruth Soukup
- by Abby Lawson
- by Beth Anne Schwamberger
Want to Start Your Own Blog?
I’m here to help! Check out my comprehensive guide on How to Make Money Blogging with updated information and links. It includes step-by-step help on how to set up your blog, best practices for blogging, and all the details on how to make money from blogging.
Also, be sure to sign up for my free Cheat Sheet: .
Previous Income Reports
See all Previous Income Reports here.
More Posts on Blogging
- Help! I Want to Start a Blog, But Isn’t the Market Already Saturated?
- Help! I Want to Start a Blog, But I Can’t Figure Out What I Should Blog About!
- The 3 Most Important Things You Should Do After You Start a Blog
- Why I Think You Should Break the “Blogging Rules”
- 5 Questions to Ask When You Feel Like Quitting Your Blog