Guess, who we have today? Michelle of Making Sense of Cents (and, I am super doooper excited to have her here).
If you ever wondered how to make money blogging or can you really make money blogging, this interview will REALLY help you out.
I come across questions about how to make money blogging almost every other day and I was happy when I could interview Michelle who is the owner and founder of a WILDLY successful blog – Making Sense of Cents. I am EXCITED to bring this interview where we talk about in and outs of how to make money blogging
This is the tenth interview of our series and we welcome Michelle of Making Sense of Cents, who will tell you about her journey.
If you haven’t read the first three remote job interview, you can check it out
For those of you who have read the first nine interview of our remote job series, you can skip directly to the interview about how to make money blogging
This post may contain affiliate links to products I trust. This means if you make a purchase using the links I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support!
If you are NEW to work from home or remote jobs and wondering if it is for you, check out this FREE WORK AT HOME SUMMIT. Not only does this work at home training have workbooks and ebooks to get you in the right mindset and be on track, but it also has a bunch of valuable interview videos with people you may already have heard about (like Gina Horkey of the Horkey Handbook).
1. Tell us something about yourself and your work on Making Sense of Cents.
Hello! I am the founder and creator of Making Sense of Cents, a personal finance website that helps readers learn how to save more, earn money, and live more. I paid off $40,000 in student loan debt in just 7 months, by side hustling a TON, which is something I talk about in great detail on my website. I currently travel full-time with my husband and two dogs via sailboat.
On my blog Making Sense of Cents, I talk a lot about different ways to make extra money, the best ways to save money, achieving your dream life, traveling (I and my husband live on a boat full-time, and we used to RV), and more.
Note: Check out this post on 50 work from home jobs that can help you earn extra $1000+ each month.
2. You have impacted quite a few lives and build an impressive fan-following. How did you get into working from home as a blogger and start Making Sense of Cents?
In the summer of 2011, I started my blog with the aim of teaching people how to save money as well as journaling my personal finance journey after reading a magazine that featured a personal finance website in one of their articles. I became extremely interested in that website and my interest in blogging just grew from there. This is interesting and hilarious because, before that same summer, I had no idea about what blogs were, that they could even make money or anything along those lines.
I did not create my blog, making sense of cents, with the intention of making money blogging. It was all just a hobby and an outlet I then realized how much I loved blogging and realized that it was for me, so now I am a full-time blogger! I went full-time in October of 2013 and I haven’t looked back once. Blogging has completely changed my life for the better and it’s something that I recommend everyone try if they are interested.
3. Did you have any inhibitions about blogging? If yes, how did you overcome it? Did something help (any online resource)?
I think everyone feels a little discomfort when it comes to blogger, and it is completely normal. It’s just a feeling that you have to push past because it will always be there. Feeling self-conscious about your writing and blogging is simply normal!
Note: I highly recommend you to check this out. It is a gold mine for aspiring mom bloggers. This is one of the BEST resources on how to make money blogging for beginners. She shares a lot of information on how to drive traffic, SEO optimization tactics, how to write for your audience etc. Using her tactics I have been able to rank on page 1 of Google and drive traffic from Pinterest.
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4. When did you start seeing money coming in? or when did you know that making sense of cents could be your full-time source of income?
Like I said above, I didn’t start my blog with the intention of earning money, so I do believe that I could have earned more even sooner if I would have had that as my goal.
I realized that I could turn this into my full-time career around 1.5 years in. I was making a good income, paid off my student loans, and loved blogging a LOT more than my day job as an analyst. It was a no brainer for me!
Note: I recommend you to check out this blog post where I share all my tips, strategies and resources that helped me earn $1200+ on a 6 months old blog. You can also check out this post on 3 best ads network for bloggers (+ perfect Adsense alternative)
5. What were the top 3 challenges that you faced while getting started?
- Time management – Work-life balance is something that I will always be working on.
- Learning everything – There is ALWAYS something to learn when it comes to blogging and this can make a person feel defeated at times. Algorithms are always changing, there are new social media platforms, and more. But, you just have to keep learning.
- Learning the technical side of blogging – Luckily, you can just hire that out, haha.
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6. If you could go back in time, what would you change that would help you get where you are (now) faster?
I would have started on self-hosted WordPress from the very beginning. Instead, I started on Blogspot and didn’t even own my domain – what a problem!
7. How do you stay focused every day? What do you use to stay organized and productive?
I like to work ahead as much as I can, and that helps me to stay focused so that I can work on the tasks that I want to work on each day.
8. What does a typical day look like?
You can read about my typical day here. In short, there is no typical day since we travel full-time. Some days I work a ton, and other days I don’t work at all. I love that blogging gives me a flexible schedule so that I can decide what to do each day.
9. Making sense of cents has seen incredible achievement and you have been covered by big names. What types of skills and/or tools are needed to run a blogger business successfully? What should a new blogger focus on?
The top thing I recommend is being on WordPress. Skills I recommend include the willingness to learn, the desire to work hard, interest/passion in blogging, and more.
10. Do you recommend any course, blog etc which can help in this journey?
The course I recommend would be my own (yes, I am biased, haha) – Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing
- Basics of affiliate marketing and how it works
- Benefits of affiliate marketing and how money is earned
- Steps I’ve done to make over $500,000 from just one piece of content
- How to know what to promote
- How to increase your conversion rate (and make more money)
- Required disclosures, rules, and laws to know
- The one important plugin you need for affiliate marketing on a blog
- Different strategies to use to promote your affiliate products
I’ve had over 6,000 people enroll in the course since I launched in back in 2016. I am active in the course almost every single day (I’ve missed maybe one or two days a year in the past 2.5 years) and I receive so many great testimonials about how the course has helped bloggers all the time.
There you go. That is Michelle of Making sense of cents and I hope you are inspired to start your own blog (or work from home in whichever space you are interested). If you have any questions, comment below and let’s talk
Resources to help you get started working from home –
Jumpstart your work from home career: Ready to work at home, make a sizable income, and spend MORE time with your family, but have no idea how to get started?? This is exactly what you need! It helps you with how to start freelance writing the right way!
Also, do NOT forget to check this out if you are overwhelmed with the information and starting to work from home. It is a resource that can get you from being overwhelmed to overbooked with clients! No exaggeration.
Skillshare – Skillshare is my go-to place to learn a new skill without having to splurge hundreds of dollar. It is an online learning community where you can explore thousands of classes in design, photography, business, and more. You can get started with a free trial using my link and get access to hundreds of courses.
FlexJobs If you are a freelancer, you should sign up with Flexjobs. It will help you go through great flexible job listings from legitimate employers quickly, easily, and safely. Every single job on FlexJobs is hand-screened for legitimacy, with no ads or scams mixed in, and every single job offers work flexibility such as telecommuting, freelance, part-time or other flexible options.
Pinteresting Strategies– If you are interested in making money online (either with blogging, e-commerce store, digital products or anything else like coaching or writing services), let me tell you one thing – You need Pinterest. In any course you may buy for business, they recommend investing in Tailwind app (the only permitted scheduler for Pinterest)
Many of you, on a tight budget, would not be able to (or want to) pay for it. But, Carly Campbell has figured out a way to go from 1 to 300k by manually pinning on Pinterest. She is a Pinterest strategy goddess, grab her book Pinteresting Strategies. Using her tactics, I quickly scaled from 0 to 150k views. You can also signup with my link and get a month of Tailwind plus free (if you want to try it out before investing ANY money into it).