Can You Really Pay Off Debt By Blogging?
*Asterisks set out in this article relate to advertising and they indicate that the author receives a small share of sales through the related link.*
If you’re looking at starting a money blog of your own, I suggest starting one here on Siteground, for less than £3/month!*
Yes, you sure can! After all, I did! Ok, it was a combination of blogging and some other extra ways of making money, but blogging helped more than I ever knew it would.
I always try and encourage people to start a blog because I wish that someone had encouraged me to start one sooner! Did you know that there are millions out there? I had no idea! But lots of people are clued into the idea that it’s a good thing to do, whether that be just as a hobby or as a way to earn some extra money!
Some people are surprised to hear that you can make money from it, and not only that – but that there are people who do it as their full time job and earning six figures from it!
Check out my income reports:
6th month blogging (and side hustle) income report
12th month blogging (and side hustle) income report.
There are various ways that you can make money from it, but the main ones are:
This was a term that I was unfamiliar with until I entered this world, so don’t worry if you are unsure what it means either. It basically means that you can get a commission for recommending a product or service to your audience.
If they click through on your link and purchase what you have recommended, you can get a small portion of the fee.
There are some affiliate networks such as Awin*, where a lot of different merchants are signed up, such as New Look, Topcashback and many more. You can sign up to Awin* and then apply for relevant affiliate programmes. If you are accepted onto their programme then you will be able to create links to add to your blog.
You will come across this in your day-to-day life as well, such as when a company like Sky say “refer a friend to us and you will both receive £100!” – you will probably be given a link to share, or your friend will have to provide them with your name so that you are given the commission.
Which affiliate networks you join or share will depend completely on your niche. If you are a fashion blogger, then signing up for clothing and beauty programmes would work well for you, if you’re a travel blogger then travel/airline companies, as a personal finance blogger I am with sites that earn people money, and sites which save people money.
A sponsored post is where a company pays you to talk about them in a blog post. It’s as simple as that! The reason that companies will pay for this is because they are getting access to your audience.
The influence that bloggers have over their audience is very high, and increasing more and more these days – I don’t know about you, but I head over to certain bloggers if I’m looking for a new outfit, or some home inspo.
The companies realise that by being in front of your engaged audience means a ton of traffic and credibility for them.
Talking about credibility – you need to make sure that the sponsored posts fit in with your blog. I have received a ton of offers and they are completely irrelevant to what I write about, so I have politely declined them. Another tip – don’t get mad at the PR, as they may have future campaigns where you would be a good fit.
I have received offers from payday loan companies, and they are usually willing to pay money bloggers a lot of money – but unfortunately for them, I write about how to stay out of debt, not get in it! It can be tempting to say yes to the money, especially when you are struggling, but in the long run it will be worth it.
A very common question – even amongst experienced bloggers, is how much to charge for a sponsored post. There is no hard and fast rule about this, and it will vary across company budgets as well.
The best thing to do in this situation, is to go back to the client and ask them what their budget is for the work, and then you can negotiate from there. You don’t want to show your hand first, as they may have a bigger budget than you realise, and they aren’t going to tell you that if you undervalue yourself!
For complete transparency (when am I ever anything but with you lot?!) the lowest I have had for a sponsored post is £100, and the highest is £500. The £100 was in the beginning, with pricing increasing due to increased page views, followers and DA. (DA is domain authority, which you can get the score from here).
I’m sure you all know what adverts are! You can put ads on your blog to earn you money when people click onto them. There are various ad networks that you can join but the most popular for newbies are Google Adsense and Media.net*.
Ads are a good way of earning some money on your blog, because they are passive. Once they are set up they are all good to go and you can leave them! When you set them up you can restrict certain categories, such as payday loan sites.
The problem with ads is that you tend to need a high amount of page views to earn anything decent from them. Once you hit high page views you can join better ad networks, and earn more money. But first you have to get that amount of page views, which is no easy feat!
Another problem with ads is that they are incredibly distracting for your readers. If you look at the ads that I have on this site, they are up on the right hand side, and I hope (fingers crossed!) that they aren’t very intrusive.
I don’t really want you clicking off my site onto another one to buy off them. I want you to stay on my site and read more of my stuff (more page views…!).
It can be tempting to stick up a ton of ads to earn lots of cash, but please keep your readers in mind. Perhaps go and read some other blogs and see what you think of their ads. For me personally, if a site has lots of ads, I will likely click off it – especially if they have ads within the text of a blog post.
I’ve lumped these two in together because I think that they are quite similar in a way. They aren’t the ‘traditional’ way of earning money from blogging, but they are becoming more and more popular.
Products refers to a product that you have created yourself, with the purpose of selling to your readers. An example could be an eBook, or a course for your readers to take.
Many bloggers spend a lot of time creating products to sell to their audience, and some do incredibly well just from selling these. I personally will also be creating these in the future, so keep your eyes peeled!
Services are different in that you tend to be paid for the time that you are taking to complete a task, such as if you become a Virtual Assistant, you will likely be paid an hourly rate for your services.
Services that you can offer could be: content writing, copywriting, proofreading, social media management (e.g. sharing blog posts on Twitter, leaving comment on other bloggers blogs/social media), newsletter creation, and many more!
There are other ways that you can earn money from blogging, such as radio or TV appearances, speaking appearances, and more – but these above are the most common ways of earning from a blog.
Can You Really Pay Off Debt By Blogging?
I would like to say both yes and no here! Of course, not everything is done the same by everyone, and not everyone can have the exact same results. You can’t just create a blog, throw some articles up and become a millionaire – there is a lot of hard work that goes into it, and a fair amount of strategy and luck.
When I wanted to pay off debt, I looked at ways of increasing my income, and blogging was one of those ways.
I used the money made from blogging directly onto my debt and it greatly contributed. Not only was the actual money part useful, but blogging opened up new techniques and hacks in regards to finances that I may not have known about before, due to reading more of other blogs, and also needing to do more research myself.
It’s not just me that has paid off debt using blogging either, I thought to demonstrate this to you I could ask some fellow UK money bloggers about their experiences too:
I Always Believed In Futures
I started blogging in January 2011. I worked out it is £1800 that I have paid off my debt so far – which has been aid off by blogging through sponsored posts and ads.
I blog/freelance write full time and started freelancing due to the blog – I offer writing, proofreading and virtual assistant work. I recommend blogging as a way to pay off debt as it is a fun and creative way to make money and every day is different -no two days are ever the same.
I’ve not been blogging for too long at Moneyless Man. In fact, it’s only been a couple of months, but I’m already managing to use it to pay off debt through affiliates. I guess that’s testiment to what can be achieved by blogging.
My total debt is/was £35,000 and I’m managing to pay off around £30 per month of debt in affiliate payments already. I know that’s not a huge amount, but I can only see it growing over time!
I recommend blogging as a way to pay off debt because there are masses of different opportunities to be found, whether that be in the form of affiliate sales, sponsored posts, ad traffic, or even selling your own products and services. As an added bonus, I’ve found that it really helps to keep you on track, and the support from other bloggers goes a long way.
At its highest, my debt was £13,000. I managed to clear it using a variety of side hustles, with blogging being one of them. I earned £2,000 from blogging which I used to pay off my debt back in 2014.
I made money from blogging by using refer a friend schemes, affiliates and also from sponsored posts.
Blogging is a great way to pay off debt, especially if you want a passive income! I love affiliate links because you write your blog post once and then if anyone visits your blog, from Google, social media or they stumble upon it, you can still make money months, if not years, after writing it.
I have a mortgage and two loans and blogging means I can provide myself with an income from home whilst I have two young children, avoiding full time childcare costs. I have been blogging full time since May 2017.
Money from blogging goes towards daily living costs including debt (2 loans). We have been able to increase our monthly mortgage repayments thanks to me being able to work from home whilst the children are still little. Just increasing our mortgage repayments by £50 a month has cut over £10000 off the total interest we will pay back!
Mrs Mummy Penny
Back in April I faced my demons and added up all my credit cards..it came to £15,500. The first year of running Mrs Mummypenny Ltd had taken its toll financially and I now had a chunk of debt to repay. The debt was mostly 0%, but to protect me in the short time it was all switched to a long term 0% credit card. Interest-free for 42 months. £2k remained on a Barclays Business credit card, so the aim was to pay that off first. By July, three months later £2000 has been paid off.
This has been paid off in two way, a no spend month in May where we managed to save £700 off our normal living expenses. The remainder was paid off after a particularly lucrative blogging month in June. A couple of lucrative sponsored posts went straight into my credit card balance.
I have to point out that blogging is a tough slog. It has been my full-time job now for two years and its been building as a business for four years. So believe me its take so much hard work and determination to get to this level of blogging. I love it, but its hard work and determination will see it pay off. Know your value and charge enough for your hard work.
Blogging has a very small set up fee, which is why it’s so popular – it has great potential, with many people turning to it as a full time job, even if they did not set out with that intention. I didn’t set up the blog with the intention of using it to pay off my debt, but it turned out that way!
If you want to start a blog, I have a step-by-step guide on how to do so, or you can sign up for my 7 day free email course which will guide you through the beginning steps.
What do you think, could you pay off debt by blogging? Or have you done so already?
Ways To Make Extra Money Now:
- Start a blog with Siteground! This can start off as a fun side hustle, and have the potential to turn into a huge full time income (which is still fun!). Yes, you CAN make money blogging, and it’s the best thing that I ever did. To get started, read my post How To Start a Blog.
- Answer simple questions on survey sites! This is a really easy money earner and I love it because I do it when I don’t need to really think too much e.g. Netflix on in the background. Sign up to the best survey sites over here.
- Matched Betting – you don’t need to be good at maths, it’s not gambling, it’s tax-free, it can be done at any time of day and earn you thousands extra per month. All explained here and you can sign up to my favourite site that will guide you through the steps.
- Mystery Shopping – I always thought these were a scam or a pain to do, until I got started! Since then, the free food and other items (e.g. clothes for me and my daughter) have convinced me otherwise! My favourite legit sites are rounded up for you here.