Can You Really Earn a Full-Time Income with Your Blog?

Are you discouraged that your blog isn’t making much, if ANY money? Over the past 3 years, I’ve been able to more than triple my income on KalynBrooke.com, and in this transparent post, I share exactly how I took my blog to the next level. Proof you really can make a full-time income blogging!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Are you discouraged that your blog isn't making much, if ANY money? Over the past 3 years, this blogger has more than tripled her income, and in this transparent post, she shares exactly how she took her blog to the next level. Proof you really can make a full-time income blogging!

In 2013, I wrote a pretty in-depth post answering the question every blogger {or wanna-be blogger} has asked at some point in their life — can you really make money blogging?

I did this for two reasons. One, to encourage newbie bloggers that it is possible to make money {even if at that point my income was still very little!}, and second, because I needed a good answer for all my friends and family who didn’t understand that my “playing” on the computer all day was actually paying off.

My goal at the time of that post was to make a full-time income by Year 3. I had already been blogging for at least a year, (KalynBrooke.com started as Creative Savings in June 2012), and knew it was possible. It really just depending on how much time, dedication, and hard work I was willing to put into it!

Since we’ve passed the 3 Year mark — in fact, we’re quickly approaching Year 4 — I thought it might be fun to revisit that post and give you an update on how I’m doing. I know I’m always curious as to how much bloggers are really making!

Today, I’m going to be completely transparent and give you the exact income amounts I’ve made at certain milestones over the past 3 years

Truth be told, I’m always a little bit nervous about doing this, but I think it’s good to explain exactly how this blog is an income source for me. It also goes to show you that if you treat something like a business, and don’t give up, you can earn an income doing what you love.

Blog Stats and Income Breakdown

August 2013: 54,000 page views | $308.45

  • Ad Networks – $1.19
  • Affiliate Programs – $5.99
  • Private Advertising – $75.00
  • Virtual Assisting – $194.77
  • Misc – $25.00

February 2016: 275,000 page views | $4,343.25

  • Ad Networks – $1,546.00
  • Affiliate Programs – $830.89
  • Private Advertising {Sponsors} – $1,900.00
  • Products – $66.36

As you can see, a lot has changed!

Maybe this doesn’t seem like all that much to veteran bloggers, or maybe it seems like a lot to those just starting out. Either way, here’s just a few things to note about those numbers before we move on…

1. These amounts are just a snapshot of one month — every month is different because the income streams are so diversified — I never know exactly what is coming in and when.

2. I have not taken any expenses out of these numbers. I have more and more expenses each month as my blog grows, and continually invest money back into my business any chance I get. I also contribute the majority of our income for personal living expenses too.

What Changed Between Then and Now?

Besides the time factor, which I can’t harp on enough, here are a few things I attribute to KalynBrooke.com’s growth and success:

  • Promoting favorite products and programs authentically, and not just because I might receive a kickback. This also meant focusing on a core group of affiliates and not spreading myself too thin among products that don’t pay.
  • Joining AdThrive. This is an ad network and management company who continually tweaks my ads on my behalf. It all happens behind the scenes and they make sure I’m getting the biggest return on my page views.
  • Creating epic content that encourages readers to come back again and again. It all starts with catchy headlines and being super personal!

I would not be anywhere without my readers, and I can’t thank you enough for joining me on this journey, whether you’re new around here or you’ve been reading KalynBrooke.com since it was Creative Savings! It so easy to get caught up in the technical side of blogging, but I want YOU to feel appreciated each and every day. Please feel free to tell me if I’m not doing my job!

So where do I go from here?

Well, hopefully up! After Joseph lost his job, we decided to make our dream of growing KalynBrooke.com together a reality. Some months it’s been really tight, but it’s also inspired us to keep going and to keep growing. We love working at home together, and sometimes I still have to pinch myself that we’re actually doing it!

You Can Make Money from Your Blog Too

Maybe you’re reading this right now and feeling really discouraged that your blog isn’t at the place you want it to be. If so, can I give you an encouraging hug and say you are not alone? I wrote and wrote and wrote for years before I finally resonated with someone. I also haven’t grown as fast as some of those incredibly successful stories you’ve heard from others.

My purpose of writing this post is not to make you feel defeated and overwhelmed, it is to encourage you. Because if I {who wasn’t at all an overnight success} can make blogging work, then you can too.

Are you ready to change up your blogging routine and finally make an income for your hard work? Leave a comment below letting me know what dreams or goals you have for your blog. The sky is the limit!

What Dreams Do You Have for Your Blog?

Disclosure: Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. Read my full disclosure policy here.

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103 Comments

  1. Hey! Nice Article Keeps it up with your Good work. This Article will also helpful to the visitors. Really Nice πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing a such a content very useful to me. i am learned alot from this article.

    1. Thank you so much, Dawn. There is sooo much information out there that it can be really tough to sort through all the noise.

  2. Your article is very inspiring and helpful for someone who wants to start a new blog. I remember when I started my first blog, how i used to get motivation by looking at other bloggers income report. With consistency and quality content one can achieve sucess in blogging.
    Lots of love,
    Arati

  3. I’m a fellow blogger! I just randomly came across your blog and got clicking around. Love how your blog is set up and designed. It’s so easy to get around and get a great snapshot of what you’re all about quickly. After reading your AWESOME about page. I got thinking… you know what? I bet this girl is in EBA. She’s got all the makings of a blog that’s been through it! Then I found this blogging section and…WHAT DO YOU KNOW πŸ™‚ I’m just getting started on EBA and I’m moving slow, but trying to make sure I do it right. I just subscribed to your blog and look forward to following along. Are you going to be at Activate in September?!

    1. Hi Chelsea,

      You have a sharp eye! I love EBA. I actually was really undecided about Activate because it was on the other coast and I only have the budget for 1, maybe 2, conferences this year. When it came down to it, though, I knew that I would get my moneys worth from Activate and I couldn’t say that for certain about the other conference I was considering. So I guess that is the long way of saying, yes, I’ll be at Activate! πŸ™‚ Am I going to see you there?

  4. Love, love seeing your income report! Inspires me to work harder on my blog. This is my biggest month yet and most of my income is from the Amazon affiliate program on a niche site I have established… keep up the great work πŸ™‚

    1. One of the great things about blogging is that there are so many avenues that you can use to earn income!

  5. Kalyn, great and encouraging info. I read Ruth’s book and took EBA. They made a huge difference for me!

    I’ll be staying home full time soon. We are wait listed to adopt our first child. I’m excited to be able to be devoting more time to home and blogging soon! (Also, I hope the baby comes soon!)

    Thanks for your transparency and helping others – like me!

    1. So excited for you! I know adoptions can be stressful since there is no official “due date” to plan around. I bet you are excited to have a lot of added topics to write about when you debt free family increases from 2 to 3! πŸ™‚ {Which, of course, is secondary to your excitement of being a mom-to-be}

  6. I love this, Kalyn! Thanks so much for agreeing to be included in my round up of 25+ Bloggers Who Make $1000 – $10000 Per Month. This is so inspiring to everyone. πŸ™‚

  7. I appreciate your post. I, as a new blogger, often wonder if I’m just dreaming that I might be able to blog full time. I have so much to learn but I am so motivated when I read encouraging posts such as yours! I have watched several of Ruth’s webinars and am praying through signing up for her course in the fall. Thanks again!

    1. Ruth is a wealth of information, for sure! Her course really is a huge investment but if your goal is to make your full time income from your blog, it is well worth the price tag. Just make sure you have the time to invest as well.

  8. This is a great post. I am new to blogging, only two weeks in (thebudgetmom.com). I am a little discouraged, as i thought i would be getting more engagement. Thank you for these words and giving me the courage to press on. Thank you!

    1. Don’t be discouraged, Kumiko! It will take time for people to find you and even more time for people to start connecting. But when they do connect it can be very rewarding!!

  9. This is really encouraging Kayln! Thank you for being so honest and it puts me in a place where I feel I can actually pull my blogging career off πŸ™‚
    Of course I need to get better at it but what are some of your tips on how to increase your blog traffic ?

    1. You are most welcome, Elizabeth! I believe anyone can make a career out of blogging — it really is the best job ever!

      I actually spoke at a conference about how to build your blog traffic and you can access the slides HERE: http://www.slideshare.net/kalyncomings/building-blog-traffic-3-essential-strategies/1 If it asks you for a password, use FLSUNCON. Here is the Resource Page I also reference in the slides: https://kalynbrooke.com/flsuncon15/

      Hope that helps!!

  10. Kalyn, thank you for showing your numbers and growth! Over the past few months your traffic has grown really well! What have you done differently?

    The first money I made blogging was by recommending an affiliate to my family. It didn’t cost them anything extra, but I made $120 and we all went out to dinner!

    Blogging has been such a wonderful outlet for me as a stay at home mom. I’m so happy to have virtually met so many others in my position.

    Thanks for sharing!!

    1. That’s really great that you got a chance to celebrate your win by taking everyone out for a meal! I would say that the TWO key things I have done to make that big of a difference are:

      1 – Make every post valuable to your reader. It’s okay to do sponsored posts and pitch various brands, but do it in a way that your reader gets great information from it beyond the brand. Once I stopped posting what I *thought* would resonate, I looked at my most popular posts and created content based on those specific topics. It’s almost a sure thing that readers will love {and share} them!

      2 – Study Pinterest. Keep track of your growth, and don’t be afraid to experiment. It’s one of the best and biggest ways to receive traffic, so it’s worth spending a lot of time trying to figure out what works for you. Not every piece of advice that you read will work for your account. You have to be willing to test it.

      I hope that helps!

  11. Thank you so much for this information. So encouraging! Thank you for telling us smaller and newer bloggers that it can be done though right now I’m not completely committed to trying to make money, I am focusing on writing great content and consistency.

    πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Maria! You are right on when it comes to consistency and content! I couldn’t help but take a few minutes browsing your blog and I was instantly struck at your photos. That was one of my big challenges starting out {you can tell if you go back and look at my oldest posts… please don’t}.

      In your “25 Things About Me” post you said: “I’ve always wanted to own my own business.” I really believe from what I see online that you are on your way to that with your blog. Keep up the good work.

  12. so great of you to be sharing this. I am far away from monetizing my blog i wouldn’t even know how to go about it or how much to ask for that matter of fact if someone wanted to put up ads. Now it’s important to increase readership and then I’ll think about the rest πŸ˜‰

    1. Hi Mari!

      I stopped by your blog and {even though I don’t speak German} I thought it looked very nice! You are certainly on the right track.

      Don’t be afraid to put a Google adsense ad in there at some point. Even while you are still building traffic it can be exciting to see your blog earn a little bit here and there!

  13. Hi Kalyn! I’m a new blogger and I find it really interesting! I’m focused also in growing my blog and make some money… I have some questions, which Ad Networks &Affiliate Programs do you use?
    Thanks for sharing!
    Hugs,
    Pili

    1. Hi Pili,
      I currently have my ads managed through TBN {The Blogger Network}, but when I was doing them myself, I used Adsense, Media.net, Burst Media, Sovrn, Today’s Mama, and Q1 Media {which I still use that last one for mobile}.

      If you have less than 100,000 pageviews per month I really recommend not having an ad manager as you will have to pay them, and it might not be worth it. I also think it’s good to learn the basics of how ads work and a lot of the terminology in the advertising world – it’s very helpful to have that knowledge when you are working with ad managers later.

      When it comes to affiliate programs, it’s all about finding the companies and products that gel the best with your brand and then asking them if they have an affiliate program. Amazon is a great place to start, and Ultimate Bundles is another popular one, but then there are so many places to branch out. Many bloggers also offer affiliate sales for their books and e-courses.

  14. I really appreciate the transparency of this post. Some make blogging sound like an overnight success. I’m very new to this. 2 weeks since bought and 1 week live… And really want to help it grow. I have so many plans it’s hard to prioritize.

    Today/this weekend’s goals: 1. Connect and really learn to use Pinterest. 2. Get Adsense up and running (they didn’t approve me until I was published so couldn’t do it before hand)

    I’ve seen Ruth’s book recommended on another site as well. I’ll have to add that to my “to do” list.

    1. That’s great, Audrey! Pinterest may take you more than one weekend to master {I’m not sure that I’ve mastered it yet} but you are absolutely on the right track. In blogging it’s so easy to get distracted by new “shiny widgets” that we can start a lot of projects and never actually finish anything. Keep your priority list in mind all the time and you will be well on your way to blog success.

  15. So I have to ask since Ruth’s class is closed for 2015, and I don’t want to wait until 2016 to go from 6 subscribers and 1200 page views in 3 months blogging……. in your first to second month blogging you JUMPED in page views. What did you do to cause that? What are your best MARKETING tips?

    1. Hi Kaitlyn,

      Patience and hard work. I didn’t see a big increase in traffic over the first year of writing.

      I took a look at your blog and it looks very inviting! I think your best bet at increased traffic is really researching and working on your Pinterest strategy. One of the key elements of Pinterest that I would look into is pin image sizes. To start you on your way, pins that are portrait get a LOT more attention than pins that are in landscape.

      Be patient, keep learning, keep experimenting, and keep putting out good content and the growth will come!

    1. Right now, I currently have my ads managed through The Blogger Network, but when I was doing them myself, I used Adsense, Media.net, Burst Media, Sovrn, Today’s Mama, and Q1 Media {which I still use that last one for mobile}. And for private ads, I just pitch the company myself most of the time — it never hurts to ask! πŸ™‚

  16. Thank you so much for the encouragement for us newbies. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, but posts like these make it more doable:)

  17. Thank you for this, Kalyn! I’ve read this several times and it has encouraged me every time. I’ve been blogging for almost 5 years but have decided this past year that now is the time to see if I can make an income from my blog. It’s a big dream and so encouraging to hear from others that have done it! Thank you for your honesty and encouragement! I just used your referral link to sign up for Elite Blogging Academy and I’m so excited!

    1. That’s awesome, Kristen, and you can totally do it! I’ll be joining you in EBA as a refresher, so I’ll look forward to seeing you there!

  18. thank you so much for all this great information! I think I’m going to go buy the book you suggested and I already signed up for an email notice of when they academy starts up again! When did you start blogging!? I love your blog and run into you all the time online. Your such a great mentor for me and you don’t even know it!

    1. You’re welcome, Brittany, and thank you so much for your kind words! Definitely grab that book — it’s worth the money and more.

      I started blogging a LONG time a go {about 8 years}, but have only been blogging on Creative Savings for 2 1/2. It took a while for me to find the right niche, and I was kind of a perpetual blog starter in the beginning!

  19. Thanks for sharing your income with us. I have just started a new blog (took a blogging ‘break’ for a bit) and my goal is to start earning a little bit each month and eventually being able to become a FT blogger by year 5. I have read Ruth’s book about a gazillion times and love it. I really, really, really want to enroll in the Elite Blog Academy this spring but I’m just not sure about dishing out that kind of money just yet.

    1. You’re welcome, Toni! It is a lot of money to invest upfront, and since you already have read Ruth’s book, you have a really great head start on what it takes to earn a full-time income from your blog. I would definitely focus on the core principles in her book first if you don’t feel comfortable spending the money just yet. I honestly believe you will grow leaps and bounds just by implementing all the good advice she shares in there!

  20. Thanks so much for this encouraging post! I’m new in the blogging world, so I’m soaking up all the knowledge I can from bloggers like you πŸ™‚ xx, jen – misslifestyler.com

  21. Wow, what great growth over the year, I needed this encouragement today. I truly appreciate your openness and honesty. Blogging has become a passion for me and making money has been a bit of a challenge, but I am going to persevere through like you have. Thank you, Kary

    1. I’m so glad this post was able to encourage you, Kary. Keep blogging! The world needs your voice. πŸ™‚

  22. This was so helpful and encouraging. It’s definitely nice to read something that isn’t just saying blogging is an overnight success – it really breaks down that it is a journey and I feel as though this will definitely help me along. I am also going to save my pennies and buy that course – I truly am a believer you need to invest in something to get something back so it’s no skin off my nose. Thank you for writing this and for the encouraging hug.

    1. You are SO welcome! Just keep writing and learning and improving, and you WILL start to see results. Plus, your blog is so pretty and clean looking — good design is sometimes half the battle!

  23. Hi Kalyn,

    I found your article on Pinterest tonight, and I want to let you know that I’ve gotten much more than just the article, which would have been gratifying enough by itself. In addition, I have saved the links for Ruth’s book, VA work, How to Start a Blog, and Mastermind Groups. I’ve found out about Burst Media, Media.net, Sovrn, and Rivit. I’ve learned to make the most of Pinterest, to start 3rd party ads with Google Adsense, and apply to be an affiliate with Amazon. You confirmed that I did the right thing when I chose WordPress and Bluehost. Thank you for all of that! Then, as if that weren’t enough, I went to my Kindle to find Ruth’s book and found out I could get it for free because I have Amazon Prime! So now I have it and will start reading it when I finish this comment. How cool is that?

    I began my blog less than a month ago. I have two types of dreams for my blog. The least important is monetary. If I could make about $500/month with my blog, I could afford to retire! (However, I love my job of teaching English as a Second Language to international students from all over the world, so retiring is not a critical need right now.) My most important blogging dream is spiritual. I would like to help people, especially young women, to know God and grow closer to Him. I’ve been in relationship with Him since I was 10 years old, and I’m 68 now. So I have 58 years of Christian experience to share. In the Bible book of Titus, it tells the elderly women to encourage the younger gals–not judge them or preach at them. As I look around the blogosphere, I see very few pictures of women bloggers of a mature age. Either they’re not old, or they’re posting pictures of their daughters!

    So, big deal, I’ve been at it for one month. I have a lot of work to do because my blog doesn’t begin to meet my own standards for what I want it to become. I’m an old newbie who would like to begin my “Titus 2 journey” by encouraging you, Kalyn. You’ve been working long and hard, and you’re doing a good work here. Keep it up! My warmest thanks for all of this helpful information!

    1. Thanks so much for your sweet comment, Rosemary! Keep at it and don’t give up writing. It might take at least a year for you to see some profit, but it IS possible.

      I love that your vision is to encourage young women — you’ve definitely encouraged me today!

  24. Thanks so much for posting this! I’m really just getting started and learning all I can in the process. It helps to read about other bloggers experiences. I’m currently reading (and re-reading) Ruth’s book and have learned a lot already. Lots on my to-do list! Anyway, thanks again for sharing this look at your experiences. It helps to know that with hard work we can make our blogs successful.

    Have a great day!

    1. So glad you were encouraged by this, Monica! There are a lot of to-do’s when you first start and it can seem really overwhelming. Take it step by step and enjoy the journey!

  25. Hi there,

    THANK you so much for posting this. This really opened up my eyes to my passion which is lifestyle blogging and I can’t wait to get more into it I’m a little discouraged about getting my foot in the door and getting followers. But I have been trying to do a bunch of research on how to do so.

    I’m very new to blogging and I want to reach out to other bloggers and pick their brain. Maybe have a blogging bestie that can take me under their wing! haha πŸ˜‰

    Again,

    THANK YOU
    <3 You have inspired me!

    1. I’m so glad you were inspired, Katherine! It’s so easy to get discouraged…especially at the beginning, but you have to hang in there! One of the most encouraging things I have found is to be a part of a Tribe or Mastermind Group of other bloggers so we can all help support and promote each other. Bloggers that stick together get much more accomplished than those who blog alone. You can read more about Mastermind Groups from my friend, Trina, here: http://trinaholden.com/mastermind-groups/ Know that I’m cheering you on and wishing you the absolute best. You can do it!!

    1. You’re very welcome! Sometimes I look at my own to-do list and realize I have quite a long way to go too, but that’s the thing about blogging — every day you do one or two things that get you closer to that finish line. And there’s always something more to do — you just have to pick and choose what your priorities are so it doesn’t get too overwhelming. I have to remind myself of that every day!

  26. p.s. I see an ad for a local store near my at the bottom of your blog. That is really neat to see something personalized. But how in the world do you do that? (It changes…I saw one ad for a local store, then an ad for the post office….)

    1. That’s actually all Google’s doing. I work with Google Adsense and they tailor the ads to my readers. Kind of crazy!

  27. This was a really helpful article. I’ve thought about starting a blog, whether it makes money or not, but what I am curious about is what place to start my blog. What blog site or hosting site do you use? I have seen eblog, but heard they are not that great if you want to make money. I heard paying for a site is better than the free ones. What site do you use? And can you design it yourself?

    1. I use a self-hosted WordPress site, which is the best to start on if you want to eventually monetize it. Then you can purchase a theme {template} and customize it the way you’d like, or hire a designer to do it like I did with mine. You still have to “host” the blog somewhere though, and if you are just starting out, I would look at Bluehost. They are a decent price and I have heard great things about them! I currently use a private hosting service because it can handle the higher traffic. You can always make the switch to a different host as your traffic grows.

      For more technical logistics of starting a blog, I would recommend going through Amy Lynn Andrew’s series. She explains everything really well! http://amylynnandrews.com/how-to-start-a-blog/

      Let me know if you do decide to start one. I’d love to pay you a visit! πŸ™‚

      1. Thanks so much for the info and the link for more info. I will check out Bluehost. I also am having trouble thinking of a name. I feel once I get past that, I might be ready to start, and then commit a certain amount of time each day for it. I like the layout of e blogger, so I hope Bluehost is similar. I started one a few years ago on eblogger, just to see what it was like and if I liked doing it. But then I heard if you want to get big or ever try to make any income, then it was not a good site to use. And the name I used, I found other blogs with the same name. I appreciate your suggestions. When I get it going I will come post my link. I’d like to be able to post a link to your blog too, as a thanks for help and info.

        1. The name really is one of the hardest parts! I know a lot of bloggers are now rebranding under their own names and wish they had started a blog much sooner that way. We all have so many varying interests that it’s much easier to have them “contained” under one umbrella of our name rather than a niche or certain topic. Just a thought!

  28. Thank you for sharing. I pinned this a while back to read, so happy that it jumped out at me tonight. I am looking forward to reading Ruth’s book.

  29. Hi Kalyn,

    This may be a silly question, but how exactly do you make income off of your blog? Just with 3rd party advertising? How do you find those contacts? I do all of the afore mentioned things and am super passionate about my blog, although I got discouraged as of late and haven’t been posting much but am trying to pick that back up! I have realized I love doing it, even if no one else is reading it or appreciates it. Thank you for the wonderful tips and insiration!

    1. Stephanie – it’s not silly at all! The majority of my income comes from 3rd party advertising which is why I have ads at the top, side, and bottom of this blog. They are counting for every pageview or impression and I get paid a set amount per 1,000 impressions. Google Adsense is a great place to start with this, although I do know that it takes quite a bit of traffic to start seeing results. I started earning more when I hit the 30-50K pageview mark.

      The second source of income for me is Affiliate Marketing, which is when I promote a project that I truly love and earn a percentage or commission if someone buys it. I would apply to be an affiliate with Amazon first. They don’t offer much in terms of commission, but you can link to practically any product, and almost everyone buys from Amazon anyway!

      I hope that helps!

  30. This is a great post; I can see why you resonate with readers. I felt like you were talking directly to me. πŸ™‚

    I do get discouraged sometimes. I pump out what I think is great content and do networking and marketing and the results seem so minimal. But, what you’ve shared (and thank you for doing so!) is so inspiring and encouraging!

    I hope that in the near future my blog will be sucessful enough that I can sustain a living on it. I do not want to go back to slaving away at an office job.

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Keisha! It is so easy to discouraged, but just remember this – if you continue to work hard, it WILL pay off! Your day is coming. πŸ™‚

  31. Found you via Pinterest. I agree Ruth’s book is amazing. Has helped me so much.

    Thanks so much for sharing! My blog is a little over a year old but I just began advertising in Apr/May.
    Now that the kids are in school. I’ve been investing many hours to promote and grow my blog. It’s definitely hard work but it’s my dream as well to be able to allow my husband to quit his job his demanding job for something with less hours. Big audacious goal….I know. My dreaming fuels my passion.

    I believe God is fueling a new passion in my heart as well to incorporate into what I’m already doing.
    So I’m believing big and following His lead.

    Thanks again for sharing! So inspiring. πŸ™‚

    1. You’re welcome, Melanie! You have gorgeous photos, and I see you featured on Ruth’s site often, so you are already doing an awesome job! And big audacious goals are the best. God can make ANYTHING happen. πŸ™‚

  32. Thanks for the post. Even though I’m still a newbie at this, it is encouraging to see the potential to be had by hard work and dedication.

  33. Thank you for sharing Kalyn. I love that you are so open about everything. When I first started blogging, as a single SAHM, I had to do a lot of VA work just to pay for my own blog, but month by month, I was able to scale back and I’m proud of say that after only 9 months of blogging, I far EXCEED full time income from blogging (crazy, right!) It is insane and I didn’t realize how much I would love blogging. I was under a very abusive marriage for 14 years, didn’t think anything I had to say mattered. It touches my heart that people all over the world come to our blogs and can relate to us, and that we can help and reach people not just in our own states. I love your blog and your unique voice and look forward to your posts each week. Keep up the amazing work. You are a superstar!

  34. Thanks for being so transparent! I’ve had my blog for almost two years and average somewhere around $700 a month. (Although this month will finally break the $1k mark!)

    I was curious how you grew your traffic so much. Was it all through social media? And, I just read Ruth’s book and love it.

    Congrats on your progress. You’re doing awesome!

    1. That’s awesome, Alexa! It took me a year and a half before I starting seeing anything significant. It sounds like you are on the right track!

      I really contribute the major traffic growth to Pinterest – great content + great pinnable graphics + group boards made ALL the difference. I also started writing for 2 sites as a monthly contributor, and though I don’t get a ton of traffic directly throughout the month from them, I do believe it helps my name be more recognizable on social media, which does turn into traffic.

      I hope that helps answer your questions. Keep blogging!

  35. Thank you so very much for your honesty and for posting real numbers! Such great information in here! I’ve been blogging for over 4 years, and have great traffic, but need to get with it and utilize more ad networks. I feel like I’m leaving money on the table after reading this!

    1. You’re welcome! I hope it was encouraging to you. Something I realized when talking to other bloggers, is that my ad network numbers {especially Adsense} seem to be higher than most. I do think it has a lot to do with SEO and making sure your posts are correctly optimized. Google traffic always pays better!

  36. I was very similar, Evelyne! I think it’s good to establish some lofty goals, but also to be strategic about how you’re going to get there. I’m rooting for your success!

  37. I love the honest look at the income and traffic you have at your blog. Thank you! I am still at 3200 page views post month, so the numbers you have amaze me. I hope someday I will be there too!

    1. It will come! I remember when I was stuck at 2K page views a month for the longest time, but it slowly grew — keep writing and don’t give up!

  38. What a great insiders view! I have a blog and have recently vlogging. I started it out as a hobby and outlet to share my views, it’s great to see others making actual profit. Nice work!
    XoVeronica

  39. That is awesome! I’ve seen awesome growth in the last year too. πŸ™‚ I really need to write up a post like this… and I’m still debating about this course. I just worry about the time commitment to go through all these things. I already have a lot on my plate… ya know?

    1. That’s so good to hear, Katelyn! I just love seeing other bloggers succeed — it’s such a great community and journey we are ALL on! And I totally know about the time commitment. I have passed on many a course or eBook because I just don’t have time to sort through the material right now. I will tell you that you do have lifetime access if you want to grab it at this price now, and just having access to Ruth in a private Facebook group is so incredibly valuable to ask questions and such. But obviously, the decision is up to you, and I SO do not want say all that to put pressure on you! Just wanted to provide the extra info. πŸ™‚ Have a great weekend!!

    1. Sonja, you have a really cute blog and GREAT photos! I use Adsense, Burst Media, Media.net, Sovrn, and Rivit. Some quick changes that might help is to move your leaderboard ad directly below your navigation bar, and have a 300×250 ad above the fold on your sidebar. And don’t be afraid to monetize your most popular posts by putting an ad in there as well!

  40. This was so helpful. Having an idea of what exactly people use to make money is great. I hope to one day to have my blog make enough that I can live off of. To have my time my own and enjoy it every day. Then I would have more time to write. I love to write for my blog as well as fiction. That would be my dream t make money off both.

  41. Congrats on persevering! I’m going to work on being able to monetize on my blog and the first thing I did was become a dot.com. Now, I’m going to buy a better website on WordPress and continue working on affiliate network/advertising. Have you heard of blogher.com? I’ve seen other blogs make money from their marketing as well. Btw, I’m also thinking about becoming a virtual assistant as another way to make income!

    1. Thank you, Liv! I have heard of Blogher, and I know a lot of bloggers who do really well on that network. I personally think they are too restricting with their rules, and you cannot have many {if at all} of the other ad networks on your site if you use them. But definitely do some research and make the best decision for you! I’m cheering you on! πŸ™‚

  42. Excellent post!! I know this will help many bloggers see the potential!! So nice meeting you at She Speaks!!

    1. Thanks, Mary! It was so great to meet you too! I was VERY nervous about publishing this post, as I’m sure you can relate, and really appreciate your encouraging comment! πŸ™‚

  43. I always love seeing a β€œbehind the curtain” look at someone else’s blog. Thank you for being so transparent and encouraging! Your blog has always been one that I’ve admired. I’m so happy to see your success!

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