She started a blog with absolutely no knowledge of what a blog is. She started making a few bucks, then a few more. Today that blog Michelle Schroeder-Gardner started in 2011 has made her a millionaire. “Making Sense of Cents” is her finance blog. She teaches visitors how to become debt free, how to save money, how to earn money and how to blog.
“I left my job as a financial analyst to blog full-time and I’ve been blogging full-time…I guess it’s been almost 6 years now,” Schroeder-Gardner told me from her sailboat in the Bahamas.
“Once I realized I could make money blogging, I sought out all the different ways to make my blog (earn money), so I started reaching out to advertisers and started responding to their emails and stuff like that. I was earning around $1,000 a month one year after starting my blog and it all quickly grew from there.”
How much did it grow? Aren’t you going to be impressed?
“I earned a little over $1.5 million in 2018 and in 2017 I earned around $1.5 as well, so around $100,000 a month,” she said.
One hundred-grand a month? Where do I sign? Schroeder-Gardner told me it isn’t that easy. It takes a lot of work to create a successful blog. You have to constantly create content and attract visitors. The topic of money and having more of it is something that attracts visitors. “Making Sense of Cents” has over 300,000 page views each month. By building an audience, Schroeder-Gardner was able to use the blog as an income generator.
“Affiliate marketing is definitely my favorite and that is how I earn most of my blogging income. If I refer or talk about something on my blog, something simple like digital antennas, I’m always telling people to cut their cable, get a digital antenna so you can watch local channels, just me promoting something like that, I will earn a commission if a reader decides to purchase an antenna.”
Sponsorships are also important in which a company will pay for her to review their product. Advertising is also a big part of her income as are the blogging courses she writes and sales. So what does she say to someone thinking of starting a blog and dreaming big?
“My first tip is always just to start. Blogging is super affordable. When I first started my blog I spent less than $100 for that whole first year,” she said. “Blogging isn’t for everyone. It’s not a get-rich-quick-scheme or anything like that. It’s a lot of work. It’s a business. So even if you think you’re just a tad interested, I just recommend starting one.”