This page may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosures for more info.
Do you want to make money blogging as a side hustle for retirement?
When I started reading blogs regularly in 2011, it never occurred to me bloggers made money. To add a passive income stream, I’ve done a lot of research about blogging this year after reading Michelle’s income reports.
She regularly earns $100,000+ each month from blogging.
With a slight bit of cynicism, I remember thinking to myself, “How on earth is that even possible?”
Then, I listened to Michelle’s ChooseFI Radio interview. She is so personable and relatable. She tells her story well and gave me the confidence to start a blog. She even helps others learn how to make money online in a course she teaches.
How do writers make money blogging?
Bloggers can make money from their website through advertisements, affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, selling products and more. There’s no one-size-fits-all with how a blog can earn income.
What makes blogging great is you can earn semi-passive income.
When you publish a post that is properly monetized, you can earn income from it for years down the road if you continue to promote it.
My goal is to make a full-time income from blogging.
If you want to create a side hustle like this, I’m sharing some of my favorite resources that I’m using.
These should save you the precious hours I spent not creating valuable content that can make money.
Heads up: This page may contain affiliate links. You can check out my disclosures for more details.
To start blogging, you’ll need a website name which the pros call a domain name.
In my research namecheap.com was the cheapest. Many of their domain names cost less than $1.00!
This was totally budget friendly and helped me get started using WordPress.org.
I opted for WordPress.org as the content publishing platform. Wordpress.org is the gold standard for content publishing.
If you find elements of WordPress.org to less intuitive like I felt at first, I encourage you to check out WPbeginner.com.
WP Beginner is an amazing source for free content on all things WordPress.
I continue to devote time to this website to learn more about how to make my website better.
I can’t praise this resource enough. It has added great value to my limited WordPress knowledge all FREE!
I went against the advice of other bloggers and selected SiteGround over Bluehost as my web hosting company.
I read that SiteGround web hosting is faster than 95% of its competition and it’s also price comparable to Bluehost.
The reason I chose SiteGround was because of this scenario:
Think about the last time you went to a website that didn’t load within 2.5 seconds.
Do you wait? Grab a snack and come back? Or do you abandon and do something else?
Slow websites can prevent readers from connecting with my blog.
I want to avoid missed opportunities for connection with my blog whenever possible.
Four months into blogging, and I’m still thrilled I chose SiteGround.
Readers don’t wait on anyone and SiteGround delivers.
Web Design and Framework
Next, you’ll need to select a web design and framework.
I spent a few months working in the free designs that WordPress.org offers.
While it was awesome it was free, I didn’t like the lack of control over the theme designs.
That, and, any security updates could ruin the specialty changes I made to my website. I spent a lot of time creating a nice blog, so I didn’t want to redo work if possible.
To overcome this, I bought the Genesis Framework through Studiopress.
A framework provides the skeleton structure where the security and functionality of the blog lives.
Then, you can change the designs with a child theme at any time without messing anything up.
This gives the best of all worlds.
This article What is a WordPress Theme Framework? Pros, Cons and More from WP Beginner explains more details on frameworks.
Some of the features I like is:
- Being able to place custom code wherever
- Almost limitless design options
- It’s the industry standard for bloggers
I wish I had a friend tell me to get Genesis from the beginning.
Genesis framework helped me make a great SEO-considerate site that is security minded and responsive to design changes.
I would recommend it to my closest friends and to anyone wanting to grow their blog.
For the next 5 days or so, Genesis framework is ON SALE!
If you want to support my content, you can buy Genesis Framework through my affiliate link.
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing
Finally, after I set everything up, I invested in two blogging courses so far.
I wanted to learn more from Michelle so I enrolled in Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
I didn’t know how to implement an affiliate strategy. I wanted to work smart instead of hard.
Michelle shares everything she’s done to grow her affiliate income to over $50,000 per month.
Her course showed me the technical side few talk about with affiliate links to creating an affiliate strategy that readers want. It’s a great course.
To promote my affiliate relationships, I downloaded Pinteresting Strategies written by Carly from Mommy on Purpose to learn more about Pinterest.
This was also an amazing investment. I’ve grown my views from 208 to 12k+ in a week or so!
Pinterest is a great way to connect with readers without having to spend marketing dollars. This was really interesting to me.
Pinteresting Strategies changed the game for me by teaching me the less intuitive aspects of Pinterest.
Now, Pinterest is my top referral source to my blog.
Real people are reading what I have to say about money, which is amazing.
Great content is what creates true connection among readers. I’m developing a blog and learning from my mistakes.
My immediate goal is to get 100 quality posts on the blog that help someone with their personal finance journey.
I’m writing content like mad these days. I have several drafts that are almost complete but not quite ready.
I’m really excited for the content I’m going to share because it’s different than what I’ve read elsewhere.
Favorite Blogging Resources
- How to make money online
- Reserve your favorite website name
- Get super fast web hosting
- Design an SEO-friendly website
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing School
- Pinteresting Strategies E-book