My Extra Monthly Income

Today is Wednesday, finally! Anyways, I thought I’d finally give you the details on my extra monthly income. In my January Goals update, I said: “Make an extra $500 this month.  PASS. I made over $600 from blog income and surveys!” After I posted that, I was literally flooded with e-mails from you guys! I’ve…

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: May 25, 2023

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Today is Wednesday, finally! Anyways, I thought I’d finally give you the details on my extra monthly income.

In my January Goals update, I said:

“Make an extra $500 this month.  PASS. I made over $600 from blog income and surveys!”

After I posted that, I was literally flooded with e-mails from you guys!

I’ve told you guys in this post, my February Goals, and in my goal update post that I would tell you more information about my monthly income. I’m not going to lie, I have been pushing this off because I’m not too entirely sure what to say and I thought this post would be extremely boring. But then I reminded myself that before I was making this extra income, I LOVED (and I still do love) reading about others and how they made their extra income. It’s nice to find out about new opportunities that you may not have thought about.

I am definitely not a blogging professional, so when you read this post, definitely remember that I don’t know everything. This is all just my opinion!  Also, I definitely didn’t get into blogging to make money, I blog to share stuff with you guys and improve myself. I also didn’t think I was ever going to ever make anything. I really hope the ads on my blog don’t turn people away from my blog, but I don’t think they are too noticeable. I usually don’t even notice ads at all. Having ads on my blog are nice though, because making a little money from doing something that I love is very nice.

My main extra monthly income is from my blog. I didn’t really have any ads on my blog until I started noticing that Erika from Newlyweds on a Budget started monetizing. Erika also uses her side income for similar reasons to me, for traveling. By the way, if you haven’t checked out her blog, go over there now!

Traveling is something that I definitely value in my life. I’m always super busy and I need time to relax (by the beach), and with extra income, I won’t feel as bad about spending money on vacations instead of strictly paying off debt.

This is how I made my extra monthly income for the month of January, after fees (these are all guesstimates as I can’t really remember, I need to keep better track):
  • Ads on my blog -$270
  • Sponsored posts -$222
  • Surveys -$33
  • Mystery Shopping -$150
So I actually made around $675 last month!
  1. For the ads on my blog, so far I’ve only gone through Crystal at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff, and this has worked out great! She has been extremely helpful and does pretty much all of the work with the advertiser. I’m sure I’m not the only one who says this, but she is definitely an inspiration for all of those in the personal finance blogging community (wow that sounded cheesy!).
  2. For my sponsored posts, I used Social Spark for one of them. I get leads sent to my e-mail and then I can say that I’m interested or negotiate the price. I’m still pretty new to the whole sponsored post thing, but it’s not bad. I was also approached by 2 or 3 other advertisers for doing sponsored posts and did those too.
  3. For my survey income, I mainly use Pinecone Research. A lot of you e-mailed me asking how you can join, but I looked it up and they aren’t taking any new people right now. I’m sorry! But it does say that they occasionally have banner advertisements floating around places and if you click on one, then you can typically join through the banner ad. So I would definitely keep an eye out for those! I don’t make a ton of money with the surveys, but the money does add up, and you occasionally get free stuff sent to you also! I’ve gotten many things that I’ve used and are great. If anyone knows of any other survey companies, let me know so that I can tell everyone else!
  4. I’ve talked about mystery shopping a lot, and I mainly use Bestmark.com. This is kind of easy, but the surveys that you take at the end are extremely repetitive and boring. But it is nice to get things for free such as makeup (Estee Lauder), food, and so on.

 

And then of course I use Swagbucks for nice little Amazon gift cards! I’m trying to save these up for little things that I want to splurge on. These add up kind of quickly. I don’t really use Swagbucks a ton anymore, but I probably make around $25 a month in gift cards from it.

I plan on making more money from eBay soon, but I’m not sure how much that will be. I haven’t sold enough yet, but hopefully soon this starts adding up more quickly.

I plan to do more posts that are more detailed about all of this, so that I can better explain everything to you guys. My main tip is to have an “Advertise” or “Contact” tab on your blog. If they can’t contact you, then how can they let you know about any offers? Do you have any specific questions that I should answer in my future posts? Please let me know! I don’t know your questions if you don’t ask.

What things do you do to make extra money? Please share! What do you use your extra income on?

I hope you all can increase your extra monthly income!


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Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Author: Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Hey! I’m Michelle Schroeder-Gardner and I am the founder of Making Sense of Cents. I’m passionate about all things personal finance, side hustles, making extra money, and online businesses. I have been featured in major publications such as Forbes, CNBC, Time, and Business Insider. Learn more here.

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  1. Congrats on the extra money. I also use Crystal and yes she does rock. Hopefully next month will be just as good.

    1. Zoila

      who is Crystal and how may I reach out….Thank You so Much

  2. I'm gonna have to reach out to a few of these people! You've already led me in the right direction with the survey's and swagbucks. Thanks girl!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Lisa

    Great job Michelle! Going to have to try Social Spark! And Crystal does a great job!

  4. Good Lord, that's a ton of extra side funds!! I need to do some of this

  5. I've just recently started putting a bit of effort into monetizing my blog, and I've been really suprised by how well it's going! I've already made a few hundred bucks off sponsored posts since the new year. I'm not planning on making it my main source of income, but it is an nice little bonus!

  6. This is awesome! I have to start looking into it and making some $ off my blog. I do it for fun so why not reap its benefits! Thanks for this post, very informative.

  7. You did awesome. One of my goals is to generate a side income but I haven't quite decided as yet how to go about that. I don't think I want to monetize the blog but it is an avenue to consider. I'll see how it goes.Keep up the good work. I think you deserved everything you've earned so far an even more.

  8. Live Simply- Live We

    I don't know that I will ever monetize my blog, but I do have some things I've been wanting to list on eBay, but I just have not pulled the trigger.

  9. Wow that's great! I make extra money by working part-time doing the same thing I do full time (research assistant) for someone else. The work doesn't come consistently and I can have no work for a few weeks, so I don't count on it, but it pays the same per hour as my full-time job so it makes it worthwhile.

  10. The Budgeting Babe

    Woah, so helpful! Thanks a ton for sharing. These are great ideas and a total inspiration to those of us hoping to make some cash doing what we love (blogging) in order to fund our wanderlust.

  11. Christopher

    I love hearing how others make money…it provides so much insipration. thanks for sharing….

  12. Wow, that's amazing M. I'm a big advocate of multiple income streams. Good job.

  13. Thanks for sharing! This is definitely something to consider. You're doing an amazing job with it!

  14. Bridget

    Wow this is awesome. I'm only just starting to try to find ways to earn money on my blog (as of 2 weeks ago after blogging for more than a year!)This is a great post with lots of resources… I didn't even know things like Social Spark existed. So far most of my blog income has come from side freelance projects that people just found me through my blog… so it's not even income directly through the blog lol

  15. You did great in January!! I also Pinecone Research but I never make more than $10 a month with them ๐Ÿ™

  16. Meg {henninglove}

    awesome goal and congrats on meeting and then surpassing it!! i definitely would use my extra monthly income for traveling too. set that money aside and plan an awesome trip

  17. Extremely helpful. I always wondered what mystery shopping you did. I would love to make that type of extra income, you are going to be my inspiration!

  18. I signed up for that Bestmark, but mostly the only thing they want from me are car dealerships (My hubs works at one, I don't want to spend even more time at another one!) and they called me at 1:21 am this morning!!?! I would be interested in blogging ads. I have the ones on my page now, but have no clue if I'm making any $. #clueless Great job for you though!! Keep it up girl. ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. THANK YOU so so so so much for posting this! It really helped me out! Looking forward to all of these monetary opportunities!

  20. joyofdebt

    I want to add ads to my blog now!!! Thanks for this info!

  21. I would love to know more about Crystal! I just checked out her blog and it seems fantastic, I'd love to start working with her!

  22. I'm so glad you are using your monthly income for traveling too!! Doesn't it feel great to see it grow and know that it's not affecting your monthly budget? I love it!

  23. Peace Love Applesauc

    that's awesome!!

  24. Wow this is such great info. I have been wanting to get into doing this for a while but had NO idea where to start. Now I feel like I can start getting my feet wet. Thank you!

  25. Hey, I've tagged you in a little questionnaire on my blog, and just noticed that Carla did the same ๐Ÿ™‚ But I would be happy if you joined me too and spread some love.Thank you! You can combine our questions, maybe. If you want to..Thanks again!

  26. wow good work — I'd love to make money on my blog, maybe I should get in touch with Crystal.

  27. Way to go thats amazing!Tabmy-cliffnotes.blogspot.com

  28. christine donee

    very cool of you to share this with us!

  29. Hi! Just found your blog and can not wait to read through your tips in previous posts! I think your blog will be very helpful! New follower :)Bennett Love

  30. B. (Below Her Means)

    My tiny little mind is blown by this idea. I'm impressed!

  31. I'll have to check that out!

  32. Thanks everyone so much!

  33. Thanks for sharing and that wasn't a boring read at all!! So excited for you!

  34. that you so much for sharing!

  35. Thanks for sharing..not a boring post at all. Very informative. New follower :)xxjuli ehttp://lovecardelia.blogspot.com/

  36. Great to see the results. Crystal is awesome!

  37. Your results are impressive! Anytime you can earn a bit of additional money it is nice. I would be interested in learning how the sponsored posts income is earned. Do you actually have to review something? Or is it something entirely different?

  38. You are Awesome! Thanks for sharing AND inspiring!

  39. That is great information! Thanks for sharing your income sources!