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11 Years & $5 Million Later: What I Love & Have Realized About Running a blog

It’s been 11 years since I began Making Sense of Cents, and I’m nonetheless fully amazed that that is what I get to do for a dwelling!

In August of 2011, once I opened my laptop computer and began this weblog, I had no concept what I used to be doing. I didn’t even know that blogs might become profitable.11 Years & $5 Million Later: What I Love & Have Learned About Blogging

This weblog began as a interest as a result of I loved studying different private finance blogs and figured why not begin my very own.

11 years in the past, I had no actual goals or objectives for my weblog. I used to be fully nameless – I wrote with a pretend identify, and I didn’t even inform my mates or household about my weblog. 

For all the first 12 months of running a blog, solely Wes and my sister knew what I used to be doing. 

Rather a lot has modified since then! 

What began as a enjoyable approach to share my story has became thousands and thousands of annual readers and lifelong friendships. And, I’ve earned an incredible earnings that permits me to retire every time I would like, and I really like what I do.

11 years in the past, I by no means would have guessed this for myself!

And, I’ve by no means been extra grateful, particularly these days.

Working my very own enterprise and with the ability to work minimal hours means I can spend as a lot free time as I would like with my husband and our child woman.

It’s a dream come true.

As a result of running a blog is a distant job, I get to do all of it with my household whereas we journey. Which means I can spend time mountaineering, snorkeling, biking, exploring new locations, and extra. I even have the power to take a seat at residence and have a calming day figuring out that my enterprise runs within the background offering for us.

My weblog has grown into an exquisite enterprise that has allowed me to get pleasure from my work, have a versatile schedule, and earn an incredible dwelling.

What has all the time been superb to me is how little I knew about running a blog once I began.

I’m positively not a techy individual, and I’ve by no means thought of myself a author.

I deliver that up as a result of lots of people assume you have to be each to begin a profitable weblog.

Up to now 11 years, a lot has modified for me, and it’s all as a result of I randomly began Making Sense of Cents sooner or later.

Running a blog was one thing I began and labored on along with my full-time day job as a monetary analyst, and round two years after I began this weblog, I give up my day job to weblog full-time (that was again in 2013).

Some enjoyable stats about Making Sense of Cents:

  • My first weblog put up was revealed on August 10, 2011. You’ll be able to learn it right here.
  • I’ve revealed 2,072 articles on Making Sense of Cents.
  • I’ve obtained 134,434 emails (this doesn’t even embrace the numerous emails I’ve deleted through the years, so the quantity might be over 1 million, haha!). I haven’t included promotional emails both – the 134,434 are merely emails from my readers.
  • I’ve 67,410 feedback on my weblog posts. This was greater however I just lately deleted over 5,000 feedback that had damaged hyperlinks.
  • I’ve personally replied to over 21,488 feedback.
  • It took me six months to earn my first $100 from Making Sense of Cents.


How and why I began this weblog

I say this on a regular basis, however I believe it’s value repeating: I had no concept what I used to be doing once I began this weblog.

So many individuals suppose that you just have to be a tech wizard or have expertise to begin a weblog.

However, that’s so removed from the reality. Most of the most profitable bloggers I do know have began on a whim. They realized as they went and made lots of errors.

And, that’s true for me as effectively.

I began Making Sense of Cents after studying a couple of private finance web site in {a magazine}. It began purely as a interest to trace my monetary state of affairs.

I had no clue {that a} weblog might even become profitable, that individuals did this full-time, how you can develop a weblog, or what a weblog put up actually was.

Again in 2011, I used to be working as an analyst at an funding banking and valuation agency. I had a disturbing job crammed with plenty of deadlines and obligations that simply didn’t curiosity me, plus I lacked any actual ardour and even considerably enjoyment for what I used to be doing. I chugged alongside working the 8-5, Monday-through-Friday grind and didn’t see myself having an gratifying future there. 

I fully dreaded the workweek, and I knew that the job was not for me.

Running a blog was an outlet for my disturbing day job, and my curiosity shortly grew, regardless that it was only a interest. It gave me house to write down about my private finance state of affairs, have a help group, hold observe of how I used to be doing, and extra. I didn’t create Making Sense of Cents with the intention of incomes an earnings, however after solely six months, I started to become profitable with Making Sense of Cents via sponsored partnerships.

A good friend I met via the running a blog neighborhood linked me with an advertiser, and I earned $100 from that first commercial deal.

That one deal sparked my curiosity, so I made a decision to take my weblog extra severely and discover ways to make much more cash running a blog.

I now earn an incredible dwelling from my weblog, and it began so randomly, not even figuring out that blogs might become profitable.

Running a blog fully modified my life for the higher, and I urge anybody who’s to discover ways to begin a weblog as effectively.

Running a blog has allowed me to take management of my funds and earn extra money. It means I can work at home, journey every time I would like, have a versatile schedule, and extra.

And, all of this occurred as a result of I began some random weblog eleven years in the past.

I made so many errors at first, and I nonetheless make errors in the present day. However, I proceed to be taught and enhance, which has formed this weblog into what it’s in the present day.

I used to be so afraid to give up my job once I did, particularly for a weblog.

Folks thought I used to be completely loopy and making the worst determination of my life. 

Right this moment, I’m going to speak concerning the 11 issues that I really like and have realized about running a blog over the previous 11 years. I really feel like what I get pleasure from about running a blog and what I’ve realized go hand-in-hand. I add one new factor annually, and I all the time have enjoyable taking a look at my annual blogiversary put up.

For those who haven’t but – please observe me on Instagram.

Associated content material:

Right here’s what I really like and have realized about running a blog.


Crusing within the Bahamas earlier this 12 months

1. I really like being my very own boss

Once I first began Making Sense of Cents and realized I might make an earnings from it, I shortly realized how a lot I really like being my very own boss.

I really like being in full management of what I do, and changing into self-employed could provide you with that very same feeling. I get pleasure from deciding what I’ll do every day, creating my very own schedule, figuring out my enterprise objectives, dealing with behind-the-scenes work, and extra.

I even have a rule in my life/enterprise about not doing something except I actually need to. Whereas I nonetheless comply with lots of alternatives, I’m not doing something that looks like a complete drag or is in opposition to my beliefs. This has actually helped enhance my work-life steadiness, which is nice as a result of with the ability to select the way you earn a dwelling quantities to creating certain you like every little thing you do.

I actually love every service I present – writing on-line, selling, networking, interacting with readers, and extra.

Working a web based enterprise (and being your individual boss) will not be for everybody, however it’s one thing I get pleasure from.


2. Having a versatile schedule modifications your life

The most effective issues about working for your self and being a blogger is that you could have a versatile schedule.

I can work as far forward as I need to, I can create my very own work schedule, and extra.

I really like with the ability to work for just a few hours within the morning, do one thing enjoyable through the day (similar to mountaineering), after which work later at night time when I’ve nothing deliberate. I also can schedule appointments through the day, and it’s actually no large deal.

I can work at night time, within the morning, on the weekends – I can work every time.

However, this can be one thing you have to keep watch over as a result of having a superb work-life steadiness is so vital.


3. Being location impartial is fantastic

Spending the previous couple of years being location impartial has been an extremely fantastic expertise.

I really like with the ability to work from wherever I’m, and it’s allowed me a number of the finest experiences I’ve had, like dwelling in an RV and on a sailboat. All I would like is an web connection and my laptop computer.

The one drawback with being location impartial is that it makes it tough to separate work from the remainder of your life. Chances are you’ll end up working on a regular basis, regardless of the place you’re, and whereas that will sound nice, with the ability to take a real trip could be a onerous process.

Nonetheless, I’m not going to complain as a result of the work-life steadiness I’ve proper now’s fairly unimaginable.


4. Bear in mind, success takes time

Many bloggers give up only a few months after beginning.

In reality, the statistic I’ve all the time heard is that the typical blogger quits after solely six months.

I fully perceive – beginning a weblog could be tremendous overwhelming!

However, good issues don’t come straightforward. If running a blog had been straightforward, then everybody could be doing it.

It took me six months for me to earn my first $100 from Making Sense of Cents. If I had give up simply earlier than then, I might have missed out on every little thing I’ve skilled up till this level.

Bear in mind, success takes time.


5. Don’t write if you really feel compelled

One factor I’ve positively realized about myself through the years is that I write finest once I’m not compelled, e.g. once I’m on a deadline.

As an alternative, I all the time attempt to write content material effectively earlier than I plan on publishing it.

I used to write down issues the day earlier than I deliberate on publishing, however I discovered that to be tremendous disturbing. Even per week prematurely was too disturbing for me.

I wish to be at the least a month forward as a result of I can really write once I really feel impressed, and I’m all the time comfortable to write down this manner.

At the moment, I’ve about 4 months value of content material written prematurely, and I want to be even additional out from that.


6. Get able to be taught

Every thing about having a weblog is a studying course of.

It’s nonetheless so new, and it’s not such as you’ve realized these abilities in class.

Running a blog isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme, and anybody who tells you that it’s (or acts like it’s) is mendacity.

Running a blog isn’t straightforward.

And, you gained’t make $100,000 your first month running a blog.

In reality, you probably gained’t make $1,000 your first month running a blog.

Running a blog is lots of work, particularly at first. The business is all the time altering, which suggests you have to proceed studying and adapting to the expertise round you. This consists of studying about social media platforms, operating a web site, rising your platform, writing high-quality content material, and extra.

That is one thing that I really like about running a blog – it’s by no means stale. There’s all the time a brand new problem.


7. Cease seeing different bloggers as competitors

Okay, so this isn’t precisely one thing that I’ve realized personally, however I would like everybody else to know it.

I’ve all the time had the mindset that there’s room for everybody within the running a blog world. Nonetheless, not everybody feels the identical means.

So many bloggers see different bloggers as enemies or competitors, and this can be a mistake.

I largely see this in newer bloggers, and it might probably actually maintain you again as a result of networking is so vital if you wish to create a profitable weblog..

Bloggers must be open to creating running a blog mates, attending conferences, sharing different blogs’ content material with their readers (similar to on their blogs, Twitter, or Pinterest), liking posts on social media, and extra.

Networking can assist you get pleasure from running a blog much more, develop your abilities, discover ways to become profitable running a blog, make nice connections, and extra. If you wish to become profitable running a blog, then you must community with others! In any case, networking is the explanation why I realized how you can become profitable running a blog within the first place!

The hot button is to be real and to offer greater than you are taking, that are the 2 fundamental issues I all the time inform folks with regards to networking. I obtain so many emails every single day from individuals who clearly aren’t real, and it’s all the time apparent.

I’ve made nice mates who’re bloggers and influencers, and it’s really an incredible neighborhood to be in.


8. You don’t want earlier expertise to achieve success

As you realized earlier, I didn’t have earlier expertise once I began Making Sense of Cents. I additionally didn’t have the primary clue about what it took to develop into profitable.

To develop into a blogger, you don’t want any earlier expertise. You don’t should be a pc genius, perceive social media, or anything.

These are all issues that you’ll be taught as you begin a weblog.

Practically each single blogger was model new sooner or later, they usually had no concept what they had been doing.

I’m proof of that as a result of I didn’t even know that blogs existed once I began Making Sense of Cents, and I positively didn’t know that bloggers might become profitable. I realized how you can create a weblog from the underside up and have labored my approach to the place I’m in the present day. It’s not all the time straightforward, however it’s been rewarding!

With running a blog, you’ll have quite a bit to be taught, however that doesn’t imply it’s inconceivable. It’s difficult, however in a great way.


9. You can also make a dwelling running a blog

That is in all probability the most effective issues I’ve realized since I first began my weblog – you possibly can truly make a dwelling running a blog!

No, not each single individual will develop into a profitable blogger (it’s NOT a get-rich-quick scheme), however I do know many profitable bloggers who began in the same means as I did – running a blog as a interest that grew from there.

For me, I’ve earned a excessive earnings with my weblog, and I’ve sufficient saved to retire every time I would really like. I’m nonetheless engaged on my weblog, although, as I get pleasure from what I do.


Just a few years in the past on certainly one of my favourite hikes.

10. I really like truly having fun with what I do for work

Earlier than beginning this weblog, I completely dreaded the workweek.

However, that isn’t the case anymore.

Running a blog is one thing that I simply get pleasure from a lot, and it’s a enormous ardour of mine.

I get up and really get pleasure from working every single day. Certain, there are days once I could also be drained or obtain a impolite message from a stranger (sadly, that’s simply the net world for you), however, generally, every single day has been superb.

I get pleasure from writing new weblog posts, speaking with readers, researching and enhancing monetization strategies, working with corporations, being lively on social media, discovering new methods to develop Making Sense of Cents, and extra.


11. The start will probably be robust

While you first begin your weblog, it is going to be onerous!

In any case, beginning a brand new enterprise includes studying so many new issues. The issue you expertise at first is totally regular.

I obtain so many emails from readers who inform me that they’re afraid to begin a weblog, afraid to place themselves on the market, and so forth., and they’re in search of my prime piece of recommendation about getting began.

My prime piece of recommendation – simply make the leap!

Practically each blogger I do know (even the actually profitable ones) was afraid to place themselves on the market.

That is tremendous regular.

Nonetheless, you gained’t know except you attempt to lastly make that leap.

Maybe you are able to do issues to inspire your self, similar to create a imaginative and prescient board or write out the long-term objectives you hope to attain with running a blog.

No matter you determine to do, don’t let worry maintain you again.


What’s subsequent?

Actually, my fundamental purpose is just about the identical as it’s yearly – get every little thing deliberate and scheduled for the subsequent a number of months.

Being a brand new mother takes up lots of my time (and I’m so grateful I get to expertise all of it!), so being forward on work makes life quite a bit simpler.

I’m additionally engaged on discovering new methods to develop Making Sense of Cents. I’ve considered presumably beginning a TikTok or entering into Instagram Reels. I really feel like these are two nice methods to develop proper now; nonetheless, my time is restricted. I additionally need to proceed to develop my web optimization visitors and discover new methods to assist my readers.

Talking of my readers, I’m so very grateful for all of you, and I’m comfortable that you’re all right here.

If there’s something you’d like me to write down about on Making Sense of Cents, please ship me an e mail at or depart a remark beneath.

Thanks a lot for being a reader of Making Sense of Cents!


There are lots of priceless, free assets for bloggers!

I’m going to finish this weblog put up with my favourite checklist of running a blog freebies.

I didn’t spend any cash at first to be able to discover ways to weblog – as a substitute, I signed up for a ton of free webinars, free e mail programs, and extra. You’ll be able to positively do the identical!

  1. For those who don’t have a weblog created but, then I like to recommend beginning off with my free running a blog course How To Begin A Weblog FREE Course.
  2. Affiliate Advertising Ideas For Bloggers – I launched this free 36-page book to show you all about internet online affiliate marketing for bloggers.
  3. How To Improve Your Google Visitors (FREE Video Coaching) – That is my favourite free, web optimization coaching, and it teaches you how you can enhance your content material with the intention to rank via web optimization.
  4. The Free Running a blog Planner – The Running a blog Planner is a free workbook that I created only for you! On this free workbook, you’ll obtain printables for beginning your weblog, creating weblog posts, a each day/weekly weblog planner, objectives, and extra.

I additionally suggest studying Finest Running a blog Programs & Assets That Helped Me Make $100,000+.

Are you curious about beginning a weblog or your individual enterprise? What questions do you might have for me?



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