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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 thought what I used to be doing. I didn’t even know that blogs may generate profits.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 desires or targets for my weblog. I used to be fully nameless – I wrote with a pretend title, and I didn’t even inform my buddies or household about my weblog. 

For your entire 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 technique to share my story has became hundreds of thousands of annual readers and lifelong friendships. And, I’ve earned an ideal revenue that enables me to retire at any time when 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 currently.

Operating my very own enterprise and having 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 lady.

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. Meaning I can spend time mountaineering, snorkeling, biking, exploring new locations, and extra. I even have the power to take a seat at house and have a soothing day understanding that my enterprise runs within the background offering for us.

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

What has at all times been wonderful 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-about myself a author.

I deliver that up as a result of lots of people assume you should 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 at some point.

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 stop 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 printed on August 10, 2011. You possibly can learn it right here.
  • I’ve printed 2,072 articles on Making Sense of Cents.
  • I’ve acquired 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 increased 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 feel it’s price repeating: I had no thought what I used to be doing once I began this weblog.

So many individuals suppose that you just should 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 discovered as they went and made a whole lot of errors.

And, that’s true for me as properly.

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 may even generate profits, that individuals did this full-time, how one 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 tense job stuffed with plenty of deadlines and duties 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 tense day job, and my curiosity shortly grew, despite the fact that it was only a interest. It gave me area to put in writing about my private finance state of affairs, have a help group, maintain observe of how I used to be doing, and extra. I didn’t create Making Sense of Cents with the intention of incomes an revenue, however after solely six months, I started to generate profits with Making Sense of Cents by way of sponsored partnerships.

A good friend I met by way of the running a blog group related 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 ideal dwelling from my weblog, and it began so randomly, not even understanding that blogs may generate profits.

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

Running a blog has allowed me to take management of my funds and earn extra money. It means I can do business from home, journey at any time when 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 right now. However, I proceed to study and enhance, which has formed this weblog into what it’s right now.

I used to be so afraid to stop 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 now, I’m going to speak in regards to the 11 issues that I really like and have discovered about running a blog over the previous 11 years. I really feel like what I take pleasure in about running a blog and what I’ve discovered go hand-in-hand. I add one new factor every year, and I at all times have enjoyable my annual blogiversary put up.

In the event you haven’t but – please observe me on Instagram.

Associated content material:

Right here’s what I really like and have discovered 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 may make an revenue from it, I shortly discovered 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 offer you that very same feeling. I take pleasure in deciding what I’ll do every day, creating my very own schedule, figuring out my enterprise targets, dealing with behind-the-scenes work, and extra.

I even have a rule in my life/enterprise about not doing something until I actually need to. Whereas I nonetheless conform to a whole lot of alternatives, I’m not doing something that seems like a complete drag or is in opposition to my beliefs. This has actually helped enhance my work-life stability, which is nice as a result of having the ability to select the way you earn a dwelling quantities to creating positive you like all the pieces you do.

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

Operating a web-based enterprise (and being your individual boss) will not be for everybody, however it’s one thing I take pleasure in.


2. Having a versatile schedule adjustments 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 having the ability to work for a couple of hours within the morning, do one thing enjoyable throughout the day (resembling mountaineering), after which work later at night time when I’ve nothing deliberate. I may schedule appointments throughout the day, and it’s actually no huge deal.

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

However, this can be one thing you should control as a result of having work-life stability is so vital.


3. Being location impartial is great

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

I really like having the ability to work from wherever I’m, and it’s allowed me a few 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 troublesome to separate work from the remainder of your life. You could end up working on a regular basis, irrespective of the place you might be, and whereas which will sound nice, having the ability to take a real trip generally is a onerous job.

Nevertheless, I’m not going to complain as a result of the work-life stability I’ve proper now could be fairly unbelievable.


4. Bear in mind, success takes time

Many bloggers stop only a few months after beginning.

The truth is, the statistic I’ve at all times heard is that the common blogger quits after solely six months.

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

However, good issues don’t come simple. If running a blog have been simple, 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 stop simply earlier than then, I’d have missed out on all the pieces I’ve skilled up till this level.

Bear in mind, success takes time.


5. Don’t write once you really feel pressured

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

As an alternative, I at all times attempt to write content material properly earlier than I plan on publishing it.

I used to put in writing issues the day earlier than I deliberate on publishing, however I discovered that to be tremendous tense. Even every week upfront was too tense for me.

I wish to be not less than a month forward as a result of I can really write once I really feel impressed, and I’m at all times pleased to put in writing this manner.

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


6. Get able to study

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

It’s nonetheless so new, and it’s not such as you’ve discovered these abilities at school.

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 simple.

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

The truth is, you almost certainly received’t make $1,000 your first month running a blog.

Running a blog is a whole lot of work, particularly at first. The trade is at all times altering, which implies you could proceed studying and adapting to the know-how round you. This consists of studying about social media platforms, operating an internet 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 at all times a brand new problem.


7. Cease seeing different bloggers as competitors

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

I’ve at all times had the mindset that there’s room for everybody within the running a blog world. Nevertheless, not everybody feels the identical method.

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

I principally see this in newer bloggers, and it will possibly 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 buddies, attending conferences, sharing different blogs’ content material with their readers (resembling on their blogs, Twitter, or Pinterest), liking posts on social media, and extra.

Networking can assist you take pleasure in running a blog much more, develop your abilities, discover ways to generate profits running a blog, make nice connections, and extra. If you wish to generate profits running a blog, then it’s best to community with others! In spite of everything, networking is the rationale why I discovered how one can generate profits running a blog within the first place!

The bottom line is to be real and to present greater than you are taking, that are the 2 predominant issues I at all times inform folks relating to networking. I obtain so many emails every single day from individuals who clearly aren’t real, and it’s at all times apparent.

I’ve made nice buddies who’re bloggers and influencers, and it’s really an ideal group to be in.


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

As you discovered 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 change into profitable.

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

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

Practically each single blogger was model new sooner or later, and so they had no thought what they have 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 may generate profits. I discovered how one can create a weblog from the underside up and have labored my technique to the place I’m right now. It’s not at all times simple, however it’s been rewarding!

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


9. You may make a dwelling running a blog

That is most likely among the finest issues I’ve discovered since I first began my weblog – you possibly can really make a dwelling running a blog!

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

For me, I’ve earned a excessive revenue with my weblog, and I’ve sufficient saved to retire at any time when I would love. I’m nonetheless engaged on my weblog, although, as I take pleasure in what I do.


A couple of years in the past on one in every of my favourite hikes.

10. I really like really 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 take pleasure in a lot, and it’s a big ardour of mine.

I get up and truly take pleasure in working every single day. Positive, 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, on the whole, every single day has been wonderful.

I take pleasure in writing new weblog posts, speaking with readers, researching and bettering monetization strategies, working with firms, being lively on social media, discovering new methods to develop Making Sense of Cents, and extra.


11. The start will likely be powerful

If you first begin your weblog, it will likely be onerous!

In spite of everything, beginning a brand new enterprise entails 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 many others., and they’re searching for 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.

Nevertheless, you received’t know until you attempt to lastly make that leap.

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

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


What’s subsequent?

Truthfully, my predominant aim is just about the identical as it’s yearly – get all the pieces deliberate and scheduled for the following a number of months.

Being a brand new mother takes up a whole lot 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 stepping 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 website positioning site 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 pleased that you’re all right here.

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

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


There are numerous useful, free assets for bloggers!

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

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

  1. In the event you 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 and marketing Ideas For Bloggers – I launched this free 36-page e-book to show you all about online marketing for bloggers.
  3. How To Enhance Your Google Site visitors (FREE Video Coaching) – That is my favourite free, website positioning coaching, and it teaches you how one can enhance your content material in an effort to rank by way of website positioning.
  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, targets, and extra.

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

Are you interested by beginning a weblog or your individual enterprise? What questions do you may have for me?



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