I am often asked why I choose to spend so much time blogging, and along with that question comes another one: how do you make enough money blogging to justify the time you spend on it?
Blogging: A Surprisingly Expensive Hobby!
That’s a fair question! And the truth is, I do make money through my blog. I also spend A LOT of money on my blog. Far more than the average blogger does, I would say. Not counting my babysitting costs, I spend an average of $500 each month on Stuff Parents Need.
Is that sinking in for you? It hits me like a ton of bricks every time I think about it. I spend a very large portion of what I earn as a blogger on the promotion and maintenance of this site, as well as on professional development opportunities like conferences, ebooks and other trainings. Oh, and then there’s taxes. Yeah, bloggers totally have to pay those, too. That’s 25% of everything I earn back to the government (or more accurately, to my “taxes” savings account) before I even dream about spending it!
Most months I earn more than I spend, but I will tell you that there have been a few months where I’ve been “in the red.” The overall trajectory for my blog’s income growth is positive, though, so I am feeling good about what I’m doing here, even though I turn around and invest a large chunk of what I earn back into the blog. And I spend the money because without doing so, I would have quit long ago. For example, my virtual assistant handles aspects of blog maintenance that WEAR ME DOWN and that suck the joy of blogging right out of me. She takes it off my plate. I provide a little extra income to her family. Stuff Parents Need continues. Winners all around! I also invest in learning new skills and making connections so that I can learn how to produce better content and increase my earning potential. As the saying goes, sometimes you’ve got to spend money to make money. I’m definitely experiencing that truth at the moment! I believe that I’m investing in my business the same way a small business owner would, and that in time I’ll find my overall earnings to be significantly higher than my expenses. Here’s hoping! 🙂
How Bloggers Make Money
I’m sharing this with you to give you more insight into how Stuff Parents Need works, how other blogs might also work, and to share easy ways that you can help support the work I do, and also the work of other bloggers.
The best way you can help me out is by shopping through my affiliate links! I only sign up as an affiliate when I’m BONKERS about a company and when I’m also a paying customer. I want to make purchase suggestions to you based on my honest opinions, ALWAYS. Through affiliate programs, which most bloggers who are trying to monetize have joined, we earn a small percentage (usually between 4-10%, depending on the company) of what you spend when you go to those sites via our special links. It costs you absolutely nothing other than what you were already planning on spending, and we earn a wee bit of money (and it really is a wee bit, but it can add up over time!).
The Greater Good
My affiliate earnings are dedicated to Vanessa, a 4 1/2 year old girl living in the northwestern African country of Burkina Faso. We have sponsored her through Compassion, International. It is because of the affiliate income I generate here, small though it may at first glance appear to be, that her life is going to change, and that she will be lifted out of poverty and given more opportunities for growth and advancement than she might otherwise have had.
I blog for so many reasons. I blog because it is a joy. I blog because it is a creative outlet. I blog to get my family back on the path of saving for retirement (which was the big sacrifice we made when we became a one income family…no more saving). And now, I also blog because I can make a life-altering difference in the life of a child. And I don’t have to be earning six figures to make it happen. All I need is $38/month. I can do it. With your help. 🙂
Here are my affiliate shops if you’d like to help in our efforts to change this little girl’s life! And as you peruse other bloggers’ sites, I encourage you to support the great work they are doing, too! If they direct you to a product or service that you’d like to buy, be sure to use their links so that they earn a little bit of money and can keep doing what they are doing! 🙂
(the above link is for Kiwi Crate, my absolute, hands-down favorite craft subscription box!)