How I Made $25,138 Online In July Plus My 4 Year Blogiversary

Welcome to July’s online income report where I show you how I made money online last month. It’s time to look at this month’s update and track how I did. If you’re new here, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my online income report each month. You can simply skip to the next section if you are…

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: May 27, 2023

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure for more info.

Welcome to July’s online income report where I show you how I made money online last month. It’s time to look at this month’s update and track how I did.

If you’re new here, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my online income report each month. You can simply skip to the next section if you are not new here.

This all started out as my extra income report because in the beginning it was all about the money I was earning from my side jobs. In my side income reports from the beginning, I included all of the income I made except for what I made at my day job (that was a fixed amount).

However, I left my day job as a financial analyst in October of 2013 and now my monthly income reports consist of the many ways I make a living each month.

Many people have asked why I would ever want to publicly post my income each month. Some think I’m crazy, whereas some are glad I’m open about what I’m doing. Whatever you think, I enjoy publishing my monthly online income reports and I share them publicly for three main reasons:

  • Before I started blogging, I knew nothing about side hustling and making money online. I didn’t think side jobs were worth the effort, and I thought the only way to significantly increase your income was through raises and promotions at your full-time job. If it weren’t for others publishing their monthly income reports each month, I don’t know if I would have ever tried side hustling. I want to help show others the positives in side hustling and how it can change a person’s life. There are many different ways to make money online, and I like to share my story each month to help motivate others to improve their financial situation by making more money.
  • Secondly, I like to publish my income reports because it’s a way for me to look back, learn from my mistakes and see what areas need improvement. I use my monthly income reports as a way to track how I’ve done, sort of like a journal.
  • Lastly, I like to show others that making side money is possible and that there are many legitimate ways to make money from your home. If you are looking for information on the many ways to make money online, I published the article Monthly Income Report Roundup – My Favorite Income Bloggers that showcases many awesome bloggers who are kind enough to share their income with the public each month. I often get asked by readers “Can you make money blogging?” Yes! Just a few years ago, I didn’t think making money online was possible at all. Now, I realize that it’s possible and I’m here to show you how I do it.

I know I say this every month, but it’s the truth. Life is great now that I’m my own boss. I look forward to each and every day and it’s a wonderful feeling. I truly love waking up each and every morning.

Above are just a few of the reasons for why I enjoy publishing my monthly income reports. I like to show others that you don’t have to hate your job and hate your life. You can make changes to your life and make money in a way that allows you to truly enjoy the life you are living. I’m not saying that you have to LOVE your job, I’m just saying that your job should at least allow you to do what you like to do outside of work (whether that be spending time with loved ones, painting, hiking, etc.).


How was my online income in July?

July was another great month for business income. My income is growing and I’m, of course, excited to see where I’ll be in a year from now. I’ve always been told that summer is supposed to be slow and the fall is when everything starts increasing, so I’m excited to see if I notice a difference.

Even though my income has been increasing, I’ve noticed that I’ve actually been working less. I’ve been a master at work-life balancing lately and it’s really paying off!

I’ve been traveling a decent amount this summer, so being able to manage my business while also having fun is definitely my dream.

Like I say every month, the business is going well and I am very happy with it. Things around here seem to be improving significantly, both when it comes to income as well as work/life balance.

I’ve always been very excited about my business, but I am more excited than ever for the future. I have so many plans and everything is going well.

Anyway, in July I earned $25,138 in business income, before expenses.

If you are interested in starting a blog of your own, I created a tutorial that will help you start a blog of your own for cheap, starting at only $3.49 per month (this low price is only through my link) for blog hosting. In addition to the low pricing, you will receive a free website domain (a $15 value) through my Bluehost link if you purchase at least 12 months of blog hosting. FYI, if you are asking yourself “Can you make money blogging?” – my top tip is to be self-hosted. This is essential if you want to monetize your blog as you will appear more professional and this will help you monetize your blog tremendously. My blogging income did not take off until after I switched to self-hosting.

Related articles:


July Online Income Report

The number above is for the month of July and before any fees and expenses (some fees and expenses that lower the amount above total around $2,100 (rounded up), which include virtual assistants/staff writers for my other websites, technical assistance on my websites, newsletter expenses, PayPal fees, etc., however, this does not include taxes) being taken out. After expenses and fees, I made approximately $23,038. 

Below are some of my other monthly side income reports. I publish an online income update every month but only included some of them below as it would be a very long list. If you head on over to my extra income page you can find all of my monthly income reports from the past few years.


Blog news – Making Sense of Cents is now FOUR YEARS OLD!

Making Sense of Cents turns four years old later this month. It’s crazy to think about how much everything has changed since I first started blogging in August of 2011.

This includes:

  • Being able to work for myself.
  • Significantly increasing my income.
  • Having a flexible schedule.
  • Living a location independent lifestyle.

I never thought back in 2011 that my blog would take me to where I am today. This is why I always say that you should start a blog if you are thinking about it. While it’s not easy, there are many benefits that may come from it. Plus, the upfront costs are low!

Anyway to get back on track, page views are increasing and I received around 265,000 page views in July.

I still need to go through many of my posts here on Making Sense of Cents and fix the formatting, change the pictures to Pinterest-worthy images, and more. I have only done around 15% of my posts so that means I still have a lot more to go! I actually didn’t work on any of this in July as I forgot yet again. I really just need to schedule a specific day to do this and get as much done as I can in a day.

If you have a moment, I would love to be nominated for a personal finance blogging award. You can click here and vote for my blog (as well as others). It only takes a few seconds to vote for my blog as mostly everything is filled out. Thanks!

Top new posts on Making Sense of Cents last month:


Featured Question: Do I need millions of page views a month in order to make money blogging?

I feature one question from a reader in each monthly income report. Please leave a comment below if you have a question you would like me to include.

This is a question I receive all the time.

No, you do not need millions of page views a month in order to make money blogging!

I don’t receive anywhere near that amount each month and I am making a similar amount or more each month blogging than many who are receiving millions of page views a month.

I also know many who receive less page views than me, yet they are making a higher income than I am.

Every blog is different, but once you understand what your readers want, understand how to  effectively reach out to companies for partnerships, and you know how to charge the correct rate, you can make a good income online in many cases.

Don’t let page views and other statistics stop you from being a successful blogger. Focus on quality content and promoting your blog and the rest will follow.

Next month I’ll be covering the question “How do I increase my affiliate income?” This is a question many of you have been wondering and I feel that I am at a point where I can comfortably answer this question. If you have specific questions related to this, let me know in the comments below and I will try to include them.


My plans for my website, online income, and making money online:

  • Create a product to sell – I am slowing preparing to create an ebook. This summer is a crazy one for me though, so I will most likely not be able to devote time to it until the fall of 2015.
  • Promote more – Pinterest alone brought around 91,000 clicks to my blog just in the month of July. This amount is starting to grow again (after months of being flat).
  • Accept more interviews. – I took on a few interviews in July but for the most part didn’t have time for HARO. I plan on responding to at least a few a week from now on out.
  • Stop being shy – This is one of my goals for 2015. I am such a shy person, and it’s something I need to work on if I want to grow my business.


Staff writing.

I worked on a few freelance writing jobs last month and I have one starting this month. I also have two more in the works for major brands so I’m hoping those go through.

I recently increased my freelance writing rates to an amount that I never thought would be accepted just a few years ago. Due to this, I want to tell all of you to raise your rates! I see so many charging a very low rate when I know they can charge more.

Yes, you may lose a few freelance gigs, but you may also gain some high-paying and high-quality ones that will make it all worth it.

Related articles:


Website management.

Blog and social media management is still a service I enjoy providing to my clients. I plan on keeping the clients I currently have but I am no longer expanding this service to new clients due to time constraints though. Many contacted me last month which made me want to reopen this service but I am trying to focus on what is currently on my plate, while also managing a good work/life balance.

My goal right now is to further grow the sites I currently manage and own, spend more time on my blog/website coaching service, and grow my income here so that I can be more of my own boss. This will mean that I will be less diversified as most of my income will be coming from this website and related services, but I do think this is what I am truly after with my business.

Related articles:


Affiliate income.

The somewhat passive income that I’ve been making this year has been pretty wonderful. I’m still kicking myself for not being more active with affiliate programs until recently, but I believe this was the path I needed to take.

I earned around $19,000 in affiliate income in July. Definitely my best month for affiliate income ever.

I won’t see the payments I earned in July until 60-90 days later for most of the affiliate programs I am in, so you won’t see those amounts reflected in my monthly income reports until then.

My main form of affiliate income is through Bluehost with my How To Start A WordPress Blog On Bluehost tutorial. However, I am looking to diversify my affiliate income and I have been researching other affiliate programs so that everything isn’t so reliant on Bluehost. I have been doing somewhat well with diversifying my affiliate income so far though, with around $5,000 last month coming from other affiliate programs.


Chart Income

Breakout of the actual payments I received in July ($25,138, before expenses)

  • Staff writing – $1,275
  • Managing websites and social media for clients – $1,803
  • Blog coaching and consulting – $790
  • Website-related (from the 3 websites I own – advertising and partnerships) – $7,160
  • Affiliate income (from Bluehost (main source), Republic Wireless, etc.) – $14,110
  • Selling items from our home – $0
  • Miscellaneous (not related to blogging and online income) – $0
  • Mystery shopping – $0

When you see my monthly income each month please keep in mind that I work for myself. This means I have to cover taxes (which are over 30%), health insurance, and all other benefits/expenses that an employer may provide.


Comparisons and 2015 online income total (before taxes)

  • Total business income for July: $25,138
  • Income in June: $26,171
  • Difference: -1,033
  • Total in 2015: $162,523

How was July for you? Are you interested in earning income online?

If you are interested in starting a blog of your own, I created a tutorial that will help you start a blog of your own for cheap, starting at only $3.49 per month (this low price is only through my link) for blog hosting. In addition to the low pricing, you will receive a free blog domain (a $15 value) through my Bluehost link if you purchase at least 12 months of blog hosting. FYI, you want to be self-hosted. This is essential if you want to monetize your blog as you will appear more professional and this will help you monetize your blog tremendously. 

This post contains affiliate links. All opinions and statements are 100% mine and links are only placed to help you with your own blogging journey.

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. Another great month for you! You’ll definitely smash through $200k this year in earnings which is amazing 🙂 would you ever consider doing a post on how you organise your finances? It’d be interesting to see how you allocate your income 🙂

    1. Thanks Nicola! What kind of questions relating to that would you have?

      1. I was just wondering how you allocate your income, so what percentage goes on mortgage/bills/living/gas/etc., like some of the other pf bloggers show. Of course, this is quite personal information so you may not feel comfortable sharing that with the world, which I completely understand!

        1. Yes, I used to do this but since I share my monthly income it’s just a little too personal. Maybe in the future if I feel more comfortable 🙂

  2. Congratulations on another kick ass month! I wish you continuing success!!! 🙂 as you cruise down the highway in your RV!

  3. Another awesome month, well done!

    While I’ve got a blog (just past the 1st year mark!) my online income from it is pretty much 0 as I’ve not really focused on growing it. Perhaps this year I should begin focusing on that a bit more, do you have any advice for where to start? I don’t want to dive in head first to too many different areas at once.

    Thanks and keep up the awesome work!

    1. Promoting your blog is key. Guest post, comment on other blogs, be active in forums, and be active on Pinterest 🙂

  4. A BIG congrats on hitting the 4 year mark and for having another wildly successful month!

  5. Happy forth ‘blogiversary’, Michelle! I hope there’ll be many more.

    Congrats on the stellar income again this month, too.

    1. Oops! *fourth*

      Must be past my bedtime… 🙂

  6. Congrats on four years, Michelle! And a rocking July!

  7. Happy 4th and an amazing income month!

  8. Great job on your income and your four-year Blogiversary!!! You are killing it!

  9. Allison @ Frugal on the Prairie

    Look at you go, Michelle! Great job!! I hopped on over and voted for you because I am obviously in love with the content from MSOC. 🙂

  10. You’re killing it, Michelle! I’m not surprised and I’m so happy for you! Happy Anniversary, too!! 🙂

  11. Congrats on 4 years Michelle! I’m always so impressed by your affiliate earnings and it’s a great idea to diversify it. Keep up all the good work! 🙂

  12. Gina

    Happy blogiversary and congrats on such a stellar month! I voted for you to win the award; good luck in the competition!

  13. Jesse Gernigin

    Michelle I am glad we are friends through blogging! You always inspire me to be better!

  14. Amy @ DebtGal

    Congratulations on another great month!! You’re an online-income-earning machine!

  15. Sarah

    Happy Blogiversary! Another great month for income.

  16. Alexandra @ Real Simple Finances

    Happy blogiversary! Keep up the amazing work — you’re an inspiration.

  17. Happy Blogiversary Michelle!!! It’s amazing how far you have come and your journey is an inspiration to so many, especially me. Keep up the great work!!

  18. Reelika @Financially Wise On Heels

    Congrats for this awesome accomplishment. I always enjoy reading these reports as they are always so inspiring. Passive income is definitely great!

  19. $1,900 is awesome. Great job!

  20. Happy 4 years! That’s awesome! And, huge congrats on the income this month–that is so impressive!

  21. Kayla @ The Jenny Pincher

    Sounds like a great income month. When you have to turn down work you know it’s a good month, haha. 🙂

  22. Another great month. You’re my blogging hero 🙂 . It’s amazing how the affiliate income keeps going up. I eventually want mine to get like that.

  23. Congrats on 4 years of blogging!!! 🙂

  24. Tennille@ Two Kids And A Budget

    I’m just completely amazed at what you have accomplished in just 4 short years! You are an inspiration!

  25. Ali @ Anything You Want

    I would love to start to make some money from my blog. It would be great if you could do a post about getting started with affiliate programs!

    1. I’ll add that to my next income post 🙂

  26. Congrats on 4 years blogging and another awesome income month! These income reports are so inspiring to work hard!

  27. Love it! keep up the good work Michelle 🙂

    1. Thanks Michelle! I hope you are doing well!

  28. Thanks! Do you have any specific questions about affiliate income?

    1. All great questions. Thanks!

  29. Another incredible month! It must feel quite amazing to look back at all that you’ve achieved with your online activities 🙂

  30. Kirsten

    Congrats on 4 years of blogging, Michelle!!

    What stood out to me most was that you are turning clients away (I was like, um, send ’em my way?) That’s awesome when you get to a point of being able to turn work away.

    As someone with ten years project management experience, I’m interested in figuring out how to apply that to the online world. I know some bigger blogs hire actual PMs but I’m not really interested in working for someone else. I think blog and social media management would be up my alley. I’d love to be able to chat with you on how you got started!

    1. You can always email me 🙂

  31. Nothing wrong with that 🙂

  32. Kelby

    Michelle your income reports are always so motivating! Congrats on a great month and your 4 year blogiversary!

  33. Beth

    I love reading your blog. You are very inspirational. Never stop!

    But…Here is a random question for you: What kind of computer do you use? I am in the market for a new one and I am also toying with the idea of starting my own blog. So I just thought it would be helpful to get your list of work equipment you use for blogging. 🙂

  34. Michelle! I am very much impressed with your July income! Yours is truly one of the best months! Good luck on your August income. High five!

  35. Wow, you are seriously such an inspiration to me Michelle! I remember reading your income reports back in January when I first started blogging and thinking it would probably take me years to even start making a single dollar from my blog, but I made almost $300 last month! I was so excited haha. You are right, blogging is lots of hard work but it is so worth it and enjoyable. Thanks for being so transparent and showing the rest of us that it IS possible. You continue to motivate me in my own journey! Congrats on another great month, and happy 4 years to you! 🙂

  36. Wow that is a great amount of online income. Congrats on the 4 year anniversary, I will hit mine soon as we started out the same year. How does it feel making all that passive income? (New Question)

    1. Thanks EL!

      It feels amazing making all of this passive income 🙂

  37. Alyssa

    Hey there I too am a blogger and offer some virtual assistant services as well. You say not to undercharge. What do you recommend charging just out of curiosity.

    1. That’s a very difficult question to answer since there are so many factors that come into play. I recommend charging exactly what you think your worth 🙂

  38. This is awesome! Thanks so much for sharing. Inspires me to work harder in the passive income area. Keep up the great work!

  39. Awesome congratulations on your success! This is definitely my dream. My issue devoting time to my blog. I have three children & I homeschool. Time management is what I have to work on.

  40. Hey Michelle,

    Over $25,000 in a month once again, that is impressive! I love following your journey and seeing the progress that you are making. It helps serve as motivation for myself to hustle and continue to work hard.

    I think creating a product of your own would be great! Are there some things that you are looking to cut down on so that you could devote more time in this area?

    I’m off the share this with my followers on Twitter!

  41. Taylor

    Wow this is inspiring! I’m struggling right now at an income plateau. I think it’s because I haven’t diversified. That’s something I need to work on.

  42. Captain Dividend

    Hey I just discovered your site and I love it. I really love your open and honest approach to your writing. Your making amazing progress. $25000+ !!!

  43. That’s so awesome Michelle! Congrats on an amazing month! It seems like your earnings took off after you got rid of some blogs and focused on one. I’ve been thinking about that lately because multiple blogs has taken my attention down too many paths which has stunted my earnings. Thanks for making me think about this!

    1. Yes, I believe it has helped as well. I meant to mention that in this post but forgot!

  44. That’s pretty amazing for a blog that’s only four years old, although some of your income does come from activities not related to your blog (managing websites and staff writing?).

    I agree with you on concentrating on the things that make you your own boss though, and less on those that require working for other people. I did that three years ago, lived incredibly frugally (and debt-free) for those three years and it’s definitely now paying off. Personally, I would never go back to working for someone else. Oh the horror 🙂

  45. Hey! I just came across your website via a comment you made on another blog. Extremely interesting and reminds me a lot of Smart Passive Income by Pat Flynn, whom I recommend if you haven’t come across his blog yet.

    Thanks for sharing. You earned another subscriber. 🙂

  46. Iowajunksisters

    Hi I have read several of your posts and you have inspired me to try and start my own blog up! Your post has been very helpful & I can’t wait to get going! However, I have a dumb question – do you make money if people sign up for your blog? Or just view it or? Any other helpful tips I may need to know? 🙂

  47. Amanda E.

    Hey Michelle!

    Do you have a post on how to receive payments once your blog is monetized? I am in the beginning stages of starting my blog and I just want to be prepared if I am able to start making money from my blog. Honestly though, I don’t really know how that process works so any direction or advice would be great!

    Thanks! Amanda E.

    1. You can receive payments through PayPal, check, etc. 🙂

  48. Madhu

    What should we write in the blog. Please give some examples.
    Can I write about any product of any company like washing machine. Or what should I write. ??