How I made over $100 my first month blogging….
If you decide to follow me you will quickly learn that I like to get right into the point. I write many of my posts pretty direct. If I were reading it I would want the writer to get straight to the point in most cases. Sometimes I like to read a backstory and sometimes I just want the INFO.. This one has a little backstory but you will want to hear it.
So, I always stated that I wanted to learn more and more blogging. I looked at all the younger kids making money on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, and other social media platforms and thought to myself I can do that stuff. I am just not much of a camera person. I really couldn’t see myself making videos, although I plan to make a few videos in the future. I kept seeing others make money from all these different types of stay at home jobs and I said to myself why not me! I wish I could do that. So, I really began to look more into what I could possibly blog about. Was I even really good enough at anything to be able to share it in confidence? I also don’t have a huge support system so I wasn’t sure who was even going to support me in this new journey. Then I had to think about who has really ever supported me in anything that I have ever done. No pity party needed, I have come to complete terms with basically having a limited support system. I mean I have always had great friends but many of them aren’t as motivated as I am. I have an entrepreneurial mindset and I want to excel in everything I do. Once this post gets over 10k I will be sure to revisit this post and share exactly what I mean by this.
The first thing I did was get a website. I went over to Godaddy, and at the time they had a promo that I only paid $ 60 bucks for a domain that I wouldn’t have to renew for at least 4 years or so. I went ahead and got hosting with Godaddy as well. It was fairly cheap but once you begin to renew with them then the price does increase quite a bit. I let my domain www.ladiesandlemons.com sit for about 1 year and did absolutely nothing with it. I’m pretty computer savvy but I wouldn’t necessarily call myself tech savvy. To my advantage I can follow instructions well, and I’m a pretty fast learner. So I was up for the challenge. I really had to get myself motivated to start blogging. I had all these ideas …. I mean tons of ideas but I also had all of these what if … ? types of thoughts . Like, is blogging even a real thing? What if nobody reads my stuff? Am I even a good enough writer? BLAH BLAH BLAH… I had to say to myself… Wait! I am the clinician here. Everything that I said to myself I tell my patients to reword/ reframe how they think and what they say. I needed to practice what I preached. I mean seriously, it doesn’t matter how much education or skills you have in life we are human first. We all have emotions and an array of other feelings that arise when we are faced with challenges.
During Quarantine I decided to buy myself a laptop, and I wasn’t working at the time so I had plenty of time to write out all those topics in my head. I got to writing. I have always been a self-motivator so once I got started I was pretty much out to reach my goal. Keep in mind I’m the type of person who has to have a bunch of stuff going on in order to feel accomplished. (I’ll share what I mean in my post that hits over 10k)… I was studying for my licensure exams for both real estate, and my 2nd license to practice therapy. I didn’t have much time to take on a new task but I was never the one who didn’t complete things that I started. So, it was necessary that I get to it.
Below I will share exactly what I did to make money. So, I know $1oo a month doesn’t seem like a lot of money. There are some bloggers who make well over 10k even 50k per month. I’ve seen many grow off of blogging so I know it is possible. I will share exactly what I did to make money my very 1st full month of blogging.
- I got a website from Godaddy. ( I would have switched to a different provider by now.) I wanted to get a better amount of space, I didn’t want to share hosting with anyone, better rate, and I wanted a free SSL certificate. Many others offer sites like Site ground, Host gator, and Blue host are all reasonably priced. Many have shared that self-hosting is the way to go. If you are able to self-host in the beginning it may be wise because it allows you to obtain many more sponsorship’s without restrictions in the future.
Wordtracker and Keyword Search
- I went over to Worktracker and found a few of the topics that I like to write about. I was able to really determine if the topics that I had an interest in were even worth writing about. Let’s face it we all like to think we are creative but sometimes the world might not think so. If there is not a demand for what you want to write about then the chance of others actually reading it would be slim to none. So from wordtracker, I was able to narrow down what my topics would be about. I also searched Bing, yahoo, google, and Pinterest to get more a more detailed description. For example, if i put in “mental health” wordtracker might suggest “understanding mental health for kids”
- Pinterest …..Pinterest….. Pinterest …I just love it. I went to Pinterest and switched my personal account to a business account and started creating boards. I really did not know much about Pinterest so I invested in a Pinterest course that helped me out significantly. The Pinterest course that I took was called Pinterest with Elle. I completed the course which shared things like how to create pins and how to design them. What to pin, when to pin, and basically everything else you need to know about Pinterest. It was only $37.00! Now that I had the content, I needed pictures to match. I needed to create click worthy pins since Pinterest is more of a visual search engine. Pinterest has recently made quite a few changes. One of the most common changes is related to pinning. Pinterest no longer favors pinning other people’s pins. They would much rather you create your own new fresh pins. You have to be consistent with pinning and try out different variations of the same pin. It might also be wise to utilize a pin scheduler. I use tailwind. I do like tailwind as it helps me to create content and not worry about pinning all the time. I currently only pin about 10-15 pins a day and repin about 6. Some say at least 25 pins per day is ideal. I don’t have a massive following but I managed to get over 60k views in a matter of 2 weeks which is a pretty good start. You may see your monthly views going haywire. They may periodically increase or decrease. If you see some drastic changes you could always reach out to Pinterest to ask them if your account has been flagged as spam or been reported as posting low quality content.
- I went to Canva.com and started using the free version to create a variety of pins. I noticed that I started to see a lot of the same pictures on Pinterest. It is apparent that many people use Pinterest also use Canva. Which means you have to do whatever you can to make your post stand out from the rest. I started to look for other free stock photo images which I found extremely helpful. A few are Pixaby, Haute stock, unsplash, pexels, getty images, istockphoto, Shutter images, there are tons you can pay for on Etsy as well. Obviously, the paid ones are far less used on Pinterest because most prefer to use the free stock photos. So, if you have a budget for using the paid ones then go for it. I got really creative and started to take my own photos whenever I found something that looked seemingly interesting. I would go somewhere, it could be something as a picture below like this one taken at Crystal Cove near and one near Laguna Nigel in California. Canva by far is one of the easiest tools to learn. Once you master it you can create anything. I watched a few YouTube videos and felt very confident after learning how to use it. Of course I tested out a few pins here and there. I paid close attention to what worked, what board I posted it on, and also what time of day I posted it.
- I then decided that I really needed to invest in the Aesthetics of my website. My website was just okay… it had tons of colors and lemons which were on theme for my brand. I thought it was really cute. I have to admit that it was a bit busy. So, again I scaled back on what exactly I wanted and thought more about what my potential readers would want. Instead of having one of the many WordPress free themes, I decided to pay for a theme on WordPress. I use the Blossom brand and if you decide to purchase a free one you will learn that they are more user -friendly and allow you to customize many more areas than the free versions. The Blossom brand has many free cute, elegant, and classy themes. Ask others for feedback on your website. You want to know how it looks, is it easy to navigate and read. I only changed mine because I was trying to get some work done on Fiverr ( I’ll get to Fiverr in a little bit) and someone gave me unwarranted feedback. The person who I was working with on Fiverr said “why don’t you let me create a professional looking website for you” This if of course after he had already seen mine. I said to myself…. And then to him excuse me my website looks professional! Who does he think he is! He was right, what I thought was pretty close to perfection wasn’t. I had to be honest with myself. If I wasn’t honest with myself how would I expect readers to trust me.
Fiverr and Upwork
I started to find myself losing time. I would come home from my part time job and not really have time to do anything else but work on the blog. I mean I am truly passionate about the blog but I really wasn’t finding balance. I am the type of person who likes to give 100% attention to everything that I do. So, I was spreading myself a little thin. So after I wrote my eBooks, I decided to have other things to sell on my website as well. I knew this would take a little more time than I really had so I decided to get some of my work outsourced. I went over to Fiverr, and had someone format and create my e-books. I also had someone design a few t-shirts ! I forgot to mention earlier that someone on Fiverr also designed my logo. You can create everything I mentioned in Canva. If you have the time to create, go for it, if not then don’t hesitate to have someone who specializes in what you’re looking for do it, and be done in a few hours. Fiverr is also reasonably priced. I just needed a little help because I wanted to focus on creating more content and not so much on other things. Once I created the items not only did I put them for sale on my website I put them on Redbubble, and Printful. Redbubble and Printful both allow you to create products and sell them on their site. This way you don’t have to worry about shipping or keeping anything in stock. You simply upload the files and they take care of the rest. Once the sale starts rolling in more you can find other sources that allow you to make a 100% of your profits. If your main focal point is aren’t merchandise sales then these two options are great for beginners.
Social Media Outlets
- Okay so now my website is ready to go, I have the content, I have pictures, I have everything that I think I need! SO how do I actually make money? First thing I actually did after that was go Instagram, Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, and Youtube. I changed all my accounts to business accounts or I created a new account with my brand. Now I have to admit I’m rarely active on any platform besides Pinterest. I do have plans for my other accounts but I have to say that I have had the best results and the majority of my traffic from Pinterest.
- I started to research different affiliate programs and ways to make money from blogging. I do have a part time job so I make a good income. I really never thought of blogging as a career for me. I just wanted to create 4 streams of income for myself. I never thought of actually quitting my career and blogging full time, or for that matter doing any of the 4 streams full time. I just wanted to have leisure work but they all had to be things that I love doing. So, if I really never made much money from blogging that would have been okay because I would’ve still enjoyed doing it. Not only that, I have real estate, baking, and my job as a therapist to rely on. I went on to search for ways to actually monetize my blog. I will list the ones that I actually use below or will be using soon.
Share a sale
MediaVine – Mediavine recently changed their policy and you need to have at least 50k sessions to even get approved.
Other helpful links
SEO is another area that needs to be set up correctly. One of my favorite people to watch on Youtube Is Neil Patel. You will want to have a very good understanding of what Search Engine Optimization means and how to do it to maximize traffic to your website.
A little motivation…….
A few things to remember, you are good at something! If you have a hidden talent, find it! It’s in there. Trust me on this. As a person who has tried many different things and them not working out, I was beginning to feel complacent. Don’t let anyone tell you that you will never make money blogging. It’s not too late to start that YouTube channel or that blog or anything else you want to create in life. It’s not too late. However, it will be too late when you lay back and think of all the things that you didn’t accomplish and regret not taking that leap of faith. I have a pretty difficult niche. My background is in mental health. Let’s be honest it’s not as popular as fashion, or food. I have MENTAL HEALTH as a niche….. !there are tons of stigmas attached to it and people just don’t like talking about it. It can be uncomfortable to talk about. However, many people don’t mind reading about it. It is important for me to not strictly talk about mental health but to include other daily life problems as well. I needed to talk about life challenges, relationships, lifestyle, growth, personal development, and other things like that. I think that any niche can be successful if you dedicate the right amount of knowledge to it. It is important for your readers to gain your trust. This means you have to be consistent and provide quality content. I am not in this for the money. I truly want to share things that I have learned over time with others who may be interested. None of the links on this page are sponsored, which I could easily do. Life is about sharing the knowledge and paying it forward. I am still not a pro and I still have many things to learn. I did not spend over $100 on the things that I mentioned. The money that I did spend was well worth every cent. You may have to invest a little in yourself. There are tons of people.. HONEST people who share their experience and are great teachers. Although, the things that I have shared did cost some money they didn’t cost much. They have all been worth the investment. Trust me, if you have some computer knowledge you can figure it all out by yourself. It will just take some time, dedication, and persistence. I was adamant about not spending a bunch of money on something that I knew the odds would be 50/50. Think of going out to buy expensive equipment for Youtube videos before you have subscribers. Spend money on the things you actually need. The phone quality for videos right now is simply amazing and it will suffice until you need to upgrade… if you know what I mean.
I will continue to update this area as I find new things along my journey and at some point I will be extremely excited to share my earnings and things that have changed over the next few months. Like I said I’m average when it comes to the tech world but it is learnable. Don’t feel like you can’t do it. Flyers still work! I go to many community events, I still give out business cards that I designed in Canva and printed on zazzle.com. Zazzle also has a great affiliate program. Make sure you utilize all your resources. You Niche is profitable although it may be a little slower growing than most.
Moral of this story is I used everything I mentioned above to create ebooks, e-courses, t-shirts, joined affiliate programs, networked in my community, share my vision to sponsors, watched Youtube videos, believed in myself, remained consistent, invested a little money, and now I am sharing what I learned. If I only gain a little bit of knowledge I will be sure to update this post. COVID-19 has taught me a lot and the very 1st take away from it is that life is truly too short not to act on your dreams. I am projecting to see my 1st 1,000 month in July so finger crossed.