October Online Income Report – $33,482

Welcome to October’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’re not…

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.

Find out how I made over $30,000 in one month blogging! #bloggingincome #incomereportWelcome to October’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’re 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.

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 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 actually see what areas need improvement. I use my monthly income reports as a way to track how I’ve done and I treat it 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 successful bloggers who are kind enough to share their income with the public each month.

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.).


Highway 101How was my online income in October?

October was another great month for business income. I’m still making a great income and managing a great work-life balance.

In fact, we are currently going down Highway 101 on the west coast and Wes is cycling it while I drive. It’s been a ton of fun so far! I’ve been working from the RV every day on the beach or in a beautiful forest, which is pretty amazing.

Knowing that I can do this while still running my business successfully is something I never thought would be possible.

When I first switched to self-employment, everything was crazy and very unorganized. Lately, that has not been the case at all.

Even though my income has increased significantly over the past several months, 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.

The business is doing well and I am very happy with it. Things around here seem to be improving and I have no complaints whatsoever. I have been catching myself saying “Life is really good” a LOT lately. And, I mean it – life is actually really good. 

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

Anyway, in October I earned $33,482 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:


October Income

The number above is for the month of October and before any fees and expenses (some fees and expenses that lower the amount above total around $1,700 (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 $31,782. 

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 still my pride and joy and I love blogging here. I took part in many interviews in October and I am extremely excited about all of those.

October was a great month for work. I was able to work ahead a decent amount and I actually have all of my blog posts for November already done and scheduled. What a great feeling!

I also have a book in the works that I am about to sign a contract for. Look out world! 🙂

Pinterest is still one of the main ways I receive referral traffic each month. I’m still using Tailwind and I highly recommend anyone who is interested in Pinterest to try out Tailwind. Tailwind has saved me a ton of time and the analytics the site provides are great. Plus, even though I am automating a lot of my Pinterest work, I am actually seeing an INCREASE in traffic which is great.

Overall, traffic increased in October and I received around 350,000 page views.

Top new posts on Making Sense of Cents last month:


Where does blog income come fromFeatured Question: Where does blog income come from?

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 have been receiving a LOT lately. Many of you are interested in blogging but you are not sure where the income actually comes from.

I understand your question and why some of you may be confused. Online income is new to many people so this can be a tough thing to understand.

I highly recommend you check out my article How To Make Money Blogging. That should clear up a lot of the questions you may have.

In short, you receive blogging income from whoever is paying you to do the work.

If it is affiliate marketing you are providing, then you get paid through the company whenever someone buys or signs up for something through your link. If someone is paying you to place an advertisement on your website, then you get paid through them. If you have display ads on your website such as with Google Adsense, then you get paid from Google or one of the many other thousands of companies. There are many companies and blogging networks out there who are looking to pay for things on blogs!

You usually get paid either through PayPal or by receiving a check in the mail.

Past questions:


My plans for my website and making money online.

Without any plans and goals, I think it would be very hard to run a business. Constantly working towards something can help keep a person motivated.

Below are some of the areas I am currently working on:

  • Promote more – I am doing much better at promoting my articles and I’m noticing a huge improvement. One area is still Pinterest – Pinterest brought around 135,000 clicks to my blog just in the month of October. I’m aiming to see 150,000 clicks from Pinterest in November.
  • Create a book – I am in the very beginning stages of writing a book. If you know of any great articles that I should know of that include helpful tips about writing a book, let me know! I’ll take all the tips I can get.
  • Accept more interviews. – I took part in several interviews in October and I am happy with that. I am trying to respond to each and every one I receive.
  • 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.

Staff writing is a service I enjoy providing. It’s not something I am working on growing as I am trying to focus on my business, but it is something that I am still doing on a case-by-case basis.

I only wrote three articles for others in October, but I have been charging more for staff writing which has helped improve my work-life balance.

Related articles:


Affiliate income.

I earned around $30,000 in affiliate income in October. This was the biggest month yet for me in terms of affiliate income.

The somewhat passive income I’ve been making this year has been great. Knowing that I can travel in my RV and still earn a living is a great feeling.

I won’t see the payments I earned in October 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 $8,000 last month coming from other affiliate programs.

Income Chart

Breakout of the actual payments I received in October ($33,482, before expenses):

  • Staff writing and website management- $2,900
  • Blog coaching and consulting – $790
  • Website-related (from the 3 websites I own – advertising and partnerships) – $10,642
  • Affiliate income (from Bluehost (main source), Republic Wireless, etc.) – $19,150
  • Miscellaneous (not related to blogging and online income) – $0
  • Mystery shopping – $0

Please keep in mind that I work for myself when you read my monthly income report each month. 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 October: $33,482
  • Income in September: $31,030
  • Difference: +2,452
  • Total in 2015: $251,027

How was October 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. 

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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. A banner month, Michelle! Hey, if you’re on the 101 in our area, you should stop by for dinner! When else would we have this opportunity? 🙂

  2. Another amazing month, well done! I notice you do blog coaching – where can I find out more about the services you offer? 🙂

  3. Jennifer

    Do you have to claim taxes on just this income, or the products that are sent to you also? Or do you include the products in your income? Wondering how blogging effects your yearly taxes. Thanks. And good job this month.

    1. Yes, you have to pay taxes on everything. I rarely have products sent to me, but yes I do include them for tax purposes.

  4. Another amazing month! Keep up the great work Michelle, but… Make sure you take the time to kick back and enjoy your RV adventures, too.


  5. Amazing month! Enjoy the road trip!

  6. Wow!! What an awesome month!!! Congratulations!! And I have to say – I for one am SO excited about your book!!! I’m actually writing one too but it’s just a little eBook. Figure it will be good practice if and when the real deal ever strikes!! Best of luck – I know it will be great!!

  7. I see so many bloggers claiming they make thousands of dollars blogging and I question it. I have been blogging for 6 years and am lucky to clear 100 to 200 dollars every couple months. I just question this whole I make thousands of dollars and when you ask any blogger they are vague about how they do it unless you are willing to pay them for the answer. That all said I am very happy you seem to be doing so weel.

    1. I am very open about my income and answer all questions. Do you think I’m vague?

    2. Jenny

      I realize there are many scammers out there that claim they are making millions and there are just as many bloggers who never make a go of it.No offense, but people like you come to a site, and actually see the proof that Michelle IS doing it and then question her. You can’t be serious! She is being open and sharing her numbers with all of us and I would think you should be appreciative of what you are learning from her.

      You should be questioning YOURSELF and wondering why you have failed and try to figure out what you are doing wrong.

      1. mildred lane

        I just found your site and am very excited as I read. It seems like you are learning more each day and passing the information on to us. I appreciate it very much. Thank you.

  8. Congrats on the income Michelle! That’s awesome how you’re able to have a better work-life balance. That is always an ongoing struggle for me. Excited for your book!

  9. Congrats on an awesome October Michelle! You are on fire, girl! Way to go on your book deal as well, that is really exciting and I’m looking forward to hearing more about it. Hope you are having a great start to your November 🙂

  10. Dee @ Color Me Frugal

    Wow, another great month Michelle! And I love that you are working from your RV! Sounds like your work life balance is pretty awesome right now 🙂

  11. Wow, so interesting. Especially the Bluehost part. Thanks for posting, and congrats on the book deal!

  12. Great job, Michelle! We did pretty good in October considering the fact that we only worked 12 days. I went on three trips last month! Back to reality now =)

    1. Awesome! 3 trips is crazy haha!

  13. Your hustle and hard work are so inspiring! What a month you had. I love the thorough breakdown.

  14. Congrats Michelle on another great month! I am constantly inspired by you and love seeing your progress!

  15. Reelika @Financially Wise On Heels

    What a great month, congrats! I think it is just amazing what you have accomplished! Looking forward to you book for sure 🙂

  16. I don’t know how you do it! Congratulations on your success! My traffic is up into the mid 100k range now and I’m hoping to automate Pinterest to the point where it increases my traffic and saves me a lot of time. We’ll see how that goes! 🙂

  17. Wow, congrats!! Will it be a physical book or ebook or both? So exciting!!

  18. Esteban

    I just typed out my income report and it always stuns me when I see your figures and compare them to mine haha!

    It does simultaneously give me the motivation to work harder and achieve much more in the coming month!

    Very well done, you inspire me (and a lot of other people too I’m sure)


    1. Yes, income reports always give me motivation 🙂

  19. That is simply amazing! My blog’s income is fractions compared to yours. Definitely need to look into driving more traffic and other income sources.

  20. That’s hard to say as it varies all the time. Yesterday I probably worked 16 hours alone, but somedays I may only work a few hours.

  21. Kris

    Awesome month? I find it interesting that you have a personal finance blog, yet more than half of your income comes from a web hosting affiliate program. Absolutely nothing wrong with this, but I’m wondering if this was a strategic decision to make so much with this product or just lucky outgrowth from an article on making money? The reason I ask is that it’s hard for me to think of ways to find my own “home run” type of product to promote that isn’t directly related to debt (since they don’t seem to be converting or paying as well as they used to). Thanks for any insight.

    1. There are many other affiliate programs that are related to personal finance. I think the main reason for why blog-related affiliate programs do so well on my site is because that is what my business is 🙂

  22. Congrats on a wonderful October. My October was good. I earned the most money from my website ever. I know November will be better.

    1. I hope November is even better!

  23. Amazing month Michelle! Congrats on your book deal too.

    1. Thanks Cat! Hope you are doing well.

  24. Whoa…the month on month increase in income is really becoming pronounced. Super awesome. The two of you must be having so much fun building, experimenting, failing, and succeeding.

    As usual, thanks for the inspiration!

  25. Amy @ DebtGal

    Congratulations on a fantastic month!

    October was a bit of a mess for my finances. I’m still finalizing the numbers, but we spent a good bit on an anniversary weekend away, my daughter’s birthday and party, and a new propane tank. The latter cost $2660, but we believe it’ll pay for itself in about two years, given the significantly lower prices we’ll be paying for propane now. Thankfully, October was also a good month for my side hustle income.

    1. Wow I had no idea propane tanks cost so much! That’s good that it’ll pay for itself though.

  26. Holy wow! Congrats on the income and the book. You are doing a great job. Have a great time on the coast.

  27. Melissa

    Another amazing month! Your monthly updates are always so inspiring. And great news about the work-life balance – that’s quite the accomplishment 🙂

  28. Definitely going to subscribe to this newsletter. Good work!

  29. Love seeing your reports Michelle! Keep up the great work! If we weren’t tied down with school we’d be hitting the road just like you! 🙂

  30. People need to become more aware that starting a blog and providing quality content like you do will help them earn good money working from the comfort of their home or laptop PC. What most people make in a year on their day job one can earn in a month. All it takes is a dream and putting faith into works. Thank you Michelle for being a blogging inspiration to us! 🙂

  31. Roxanne

    I just find it difficult to grasp that you can earn over $30.000 in one month.
    I would like to do affiliate marketing but I don’t have a group of people following me and I have no blog worth reading. All the ones who make money are about “making money” like yours so it doesn’t make sense to start “another” one about the same thing.
    It’s all so frustrating.
    Glad you have success.

    1. I wouldn’t give up. There are several bloggers out there who make great money and don’t talk about blogging at all. I just love blogging so it’s what I enjoy talking about.

    2. Gertrude

      Hi Roxanne,

      While it is true that a lot of the “make money online” folks make money I would say they are not the only ones making money. I have a friend who teaches wire-wrapping for jewelry who is making a good income from Youtube tutorials and online courses.

      People are simply looking for genuine people to relate.

      Plus if you look at Michelle’s story since 2012, you will see that she did not start this blog to teach people how to make money. She started it as a way to chronicle how she was paying down her debt. She also had to work HARD for a long time to finally start making the numbers you see. It is important for people to take that into consideration.

      Don’t give up on your blog. I have been writing my own blog for about a year and a half now and just began to see income close to $1000 per month in side income (a combination of services I provide through my blog + my online courses). It is possible to make money blogging. I know because it is happening for me.

      Also, everyone’s trajectory to success is different.

      Feeling down on yourself and comparing yourself to someone who has been at it for 3+ years will certainly leave you depressed.

  32. WOW congrats for this amazing months and enjoy RV adventure!!!

  33. Congrats on super impressive month!

  34. Jessica Miller

    Sorry I know nothing about blogging. Is this income here(Affiliate income (from Bluehost (main source), Republic Wireless, etc.) – $19,150) ………is this blog posts? Do you make money when people view your page and click on links? I see the one is the blog: How To Start A WordPress Blog ” ,so just wondering how you make money off that post? thanks! Its crazy to think you made as much as some make in a year!

    1. Hello!

      Affiliate income is when someone purchases something through a link of yours.

  35. Another inspirational update from you. I want to work on my shyness as well. I feel like it is really holding me back from success and moving forward towards my big fat goals. I wish you the very best of luck!

  36. Hello Michelle,

    I started my own personal blog 2 weeks back. This blog has insired me to do it.

    Thank you for sharing with us your monthly income reports, they are very helpful and thanks to them I learn more and more everyday. I am so glad you are reaching your targets, you deserve it.

    I mentioned you in one of my posts about my Favourite Bloggers, the link is here: http://passiveincomewise.com/favourite-bloggers/

    It include my more inspirational bloggers so it can be a good reference point for those starting like me.



    1. Thank you and good luck blogging 🙂

  37. I’m so glad to hear this is working out so well for you. 2015 has been a stellar year for you. My blog has been amazing for my business, too (and, it has also rapidly grown this year). That’s amazing that you have 135,000 clicks/month from Pinterest. I’d love to know your secret on that and importantly the quality of the traffic you are getting.

    You’ve inspired me in many ways and I may try to add in some affiliate marketing, too.

  38. Gertrude

    Congrats Michelle ! Your story is so inspiring.

  39. Wow what a great month! Definitely need to read up on your tips.

  40. Sham

    Well done Michelle. Enjoy reading your blogs, very inspirational. Keep up the good work!

  41. Dawn S

    Thanks for being so transparent. Love all the great info. Very helpful and motivating.

  42. Temmy T. Jones

    thanks for sharing your blogs income since it motivate me to continue working on mine.

    I started my blog several years ago, but not investing much time in it, because of my day job, so I don’t have that big income as you, but who knows, maybe some day I will reach numbers as you, thanks for sharing

  43. Sharon Duguid

    Hi Michelle
    I have been following your posts (they are great) and signed up for one of your courses (and paid) but I cannot find it… I hope I can still take it, as it was awhile ago.

    I also, have to say, I am getting confused .. when you work with affiliates, for 141K of income what kind of companies are these? Is it online ads or is promoting companies? Is it your blog or do you ghost write… I am trying to figure all this out.


    1. Are you referring to my affiliate marketing course? My affiliate marketing course comes with lifetime access. You can simply just sign in and you’ll always have access 🙂

      I recommend taking the course to learn about what affiliate marketing is. I teach exactly what it is in my course.