How I Made $104,065 In April Blogging

Welcome to April’s business income report where I show you how I made money online last month. It’s time to look at this month’s update and see how I did. If you’re new to Making Sense of Cents, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my income report each month. You can simply skip…

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner

Last Updated: November 13, 2021

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.

How I Made $104,065 In April 2018 Blogging #blogging #bloggingtips #howtostartablogWelcome to April’s business income report where I show you how I made money online last month. It’s time to look at this month’s update and see how I did.

If you’re new to Making Sense of Cents, you may be wondering why I would want to publish my 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 earn a living.

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:

  1. 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 at your full-time job. If it weren’t for others publishing their monthly income reports, 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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 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 and a full-time blogger. I look forward to each and every day and it’s a wonderful feeling. I truly love waking up every single 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 business income in April of 2018?

I earned $104,065 blogging and online in April of 2018, before expenses.

April was a normal month for Making Sense of Cents. It was a big drop in income from the previous month due to me not taking part in any affiliate launches. But, the income drop was expected. It was definitely still a great month!

I think the next few months will most likely see an income level around this same amount, and then it should pick up again sometime around September. This is for many reasons such as me just being busier over the next few months as well as the summer months usually just being a little bit slower for personal finance websites, in general.

My biggest goal for the year is to still improve my work-life balance. I’m getting better and better, but I’m still nowhere near perfect. My goal is to work less than 10 hours a week over the spring and summer months.

Currently, I am working on creating my next blogging-related product to sell, which will be about how to earn money through sponsored posts on a blog. You can sign up for the waitlist here.

EDIT: November 23, 2018 – Making Sense of Sponsored Posts is available! Learn how I made my first blogging income, and how I’m now making $10,000-$20,000 a month with sponsored partnerships!

Anyway, to get back to my monthly income…

I never thought that I would ever earn over $100,000 a month, especially with a blogging business.

While my income levels are high, I do want everyone to remember that I started at $0 a month and have grown my income to where it’s at now through a lot of hard work.

Before you think that $100 or even $1,000 is out of your league, you should remember that it is not!

I, myself, used to think that it would be great to one day earn $1,000 online and through my blog. I looked up to many bloggers who were earning over $10,000 a month, and I thought it was impossible.

Now, I’m here to show everyone that it is possible! Through hard work and dedication, you never know where life may lead you.

As you can see, April was another great month. It was great on all fronts – blogging, course-wise, life, and everything else. The business is doing well and I’m very happy with it. I’ve been catching myself saying “Life is really good” a LOT. And, I truly mean it. Life is really good!

My business is growing, income is increasing, I have tons of amazing ideas for this year, and I am very excited about everything. I really love my business and I don’t know where I would be without it.

My Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course is still doing very well as I had many new students join the course last month. It’s still not showing any signs of slowing down – and this is still without any guest posts, webinars, etc.

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 $2.75 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-hosted WordPress.

This chart only goes back to September of 2016. You can find all of my income reports here.

Breakout of April 2018 income – $104,065.67

In April of 2018, I earned $104,065.67 from my blogging business. Below is how my income breaks apart in the different business income categories:

Total: $104,065.67

The income amount above is for the month of April and before any fees or expenses (some fees and expenses that lower the amount above total around $5,000 (rounded up), which include virtual assistants, Teachable course platform fee, technical assistance, newsletter expenses, PayPal and Stripe transaction fees, etc., however, this does not include taxes) being taken out. I also had expenses for the affiliates promoting my course, which totaled $5,765.65. After expenses and fees, I earned approximately $93,300.02

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

Check out The Ultimate Guide To Making Money Blogging for all of the different ways you can make money through a blog.

Below are some of my other monthly online 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 income page you can find all of my monthly income reports from the past few years.

 

Comparisons and 2018 business income total:

  • Total income in April of 2018: $104,065
  • Total income in March of 2018: $241,649
  • Difference from the previous month: -137,584
  • Total in 2018: $639,665

 

Blog news 

Making Sense of Cents is doing very well and I’m happy with everything.

In April, we spent most of the month leisurely driving from Arizona to Florida, making multiple stops along to way to see friends and family. We also found our dream boat, entered a contract on it (we move in this month!), and sold the RV. It was a crazy month, which meant that not much work was done on the business.

And, I know that the craziness of living on a boat has only just started. Due to this, I’m working on getting further ahead with more content. I realize that we will be extremely busy moving aboard and getting the hang of everything, so being ahead in content is key right now so that I can focus as much time as I can towards #boatlife.

Overall, traffic for the month was around 400,000 page views.

Below are several other business and blog-related updates:

  • My sister started as my virtual assistant in July of 2017. It is going very well. Some of the tasks she is in charge of include adding Pinterest photos to both new and old blog posts here on Making Sense of Cents, helping manage the Facebook groups I run, scheduling social media posts, and more. This helps free up more of my time so that I can create more products, reach more readers, and most of all, have an even better work-life balance.
  • I am thinking about adding some sort of group coaching session to my business sometime in the future. While I used to do individual coaching, my time was limited. Group coaching would allow me to help more people and to also create a great support group for bloggers.
  • My community group for Making Sense of Cents is continuing to grow. This is a Facebook group in which you can seek advice from other readers on all sorts of topics such as finance, blogging, travel, running a business, and so on. There are already over 10,000 members!
  • I created a new series on my blog where I interview extraordinary people who are doing interesting things in life. First, I interviewed JP, who retired at the age of 28 with a net worth over $2,000,000. I’m extremely excited about this new interview series! If there’s anyone you would like me to interview, please leave a comment and let me know.
  • I released my How To Start A Blog FREE Course. If you’ve been wanting to start a blog, then check this out. I created this email course for those who are interested in starting a blog, but haven’t done so yet. The course is free, and over 40,000 people have already signed up. Thank you, everyone, for the kind emails about how great the course is. Glad everyone is enjoying it!
  • Due to how well my first free course went, I also created the free Master Your Money email course. It’s full of great money management lessons and financial worksheets (such as a free budget template), and I’m loving the positive response from this email course as well.

Just a quick note before we continue. I created a time-saving cheat sheet that can help you increase your affiliate income. Sign up below!

Popular new posts on Making Sense of Cents last month:

 

Featured Question: How can I learn how to use social media for my blog?

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

Social media is very important for the average blogger. It can help you to engage with your readers on a closer level so that they can get to know you better, improve your traffic levels, grow your audience, and more.

There are just so many different ways that social media can help you and your blog. However, I also understand that it can be time-consuming to master just one of them, let alone trying to master them all!

It is well worth it, though, and it gets easier. Plus, you can automate a lot as well as schedule posts in advance when it comes to social media.

Below are my favorite social media resources. I check these resources often for new articles, I read their emails, listen to their podcast episodes, and more, so that I can stay updated.

  • My favorite Pinterest course is Pinterest Traffic Avalanche. This course shows you how to get free traffic from Pinterest to your blog. You’ll learn about Pinterest SEO, how to set up Rich Pins, how to create viral content, how to make Pinterest images, all about group boards, and many other valuable Pinterest strategies.
  • If you’re looking for great free Pinterest advice, that would definitely be Simple Pin Media. This website publishes high-quality articles on the topic of Pinterest as well as highly informative podcast episodes. They also have several great Pinterest courses.
  • My favorite overall business-related podcast would have to be Amy Porterfield’s podcast. Some examples of great past episodes include How to Engage Your Small Facebook Group When You’re Just Starting Out, All About Instagram Ads, and How to Create a 5-Day Social Media Video Series for Rapid List Growth.
  • My favorite Facebook page resource is Facebook Strategies Worth Sharing – I started with just around 6,500 Facebook followers when I first read this resource, and currently have over 90,000. I owe a lot of that to the ebook Facebook Strategies Worth Sharing. Growing my Facebook page has allowed me to reach new readers, improve my blogging income, grow my email list, and more.
  • My favorite Facebook ads course is Flourish with Monica Louie. If you’re wanting to master Facebook ads, which can be a great way to attract readers to a blog, this course is something you will want to check out. In this course, Monica teaches how to get webinar registrations through Facebook ads, improve email sign-ups, increase page views through traffic campaigns, and more.
  • My favorite overall guide that covers many different social media strategies is 21 Strategies I Used to Increase My Monthly Page Views from 17k to 400k+ in 10 Months – Lena Gott’s guide is full of great information on how to increase your blog’s page views. If you are feeling stuck or if you are a new blogger, check out this resource! Lena went from 17,000 monthly page views to 400,000 and shares all of her best tips in this resource.
  • My favorite overall free resource would be Social Media Examiner. This is a great website that shares tons of great updates that happen on the various social media websites. If there’s some rumor going around about social media, I usually check this website first to see what they have to say about it.

As you can see, there are a TON of great resources for any social media help that you may need. There are plenty of other websites I regularly read and listen to as well.

Past featured questions:

 

My plans for my blog and my business.

Plans and goals can help you run a successful business. I believe that working towards a goal can help keep a person motivated too.

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

  • Get at least three months ahead on Making Sense of Cents posts. I am currently around one month ahead. Being ahead in content makes life much more enjoyable because I can focus on other things knowing that the majority of my writing work is already done.
  • Grow Making Sense of Cents to 1,000,000 monthly page views. I would love to help more readers, see even more engagement, have higher traffic, and so on. I love my blog and I would love to see it grow! I’m hoping to see at least 1,000,000 monthly page views by the end of 2018.
  • Create two more products to sell. In 2016, I created Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, and that has completely changed my life and my business. I want to create two more products to sell in 2018 so that I can continue to diversify my income. I have some plans in store and I’m excited to finally start creating more products!
  • Grow to 150,000 email subscribers. I’m hoping to see at least 150,000 email subscribers by the end of 2018.
  • Work less than 20 hours per week. For the most part, I am working less than 40 hours per week. However, there are some weeks when I spend all day and night on the laptop, not even sure where the day went. Due to that, I would like to continue to work on a better work/life balance.
  • Have fun. Okay, so this isn’t really a goal that is quantifiable or something that I’ll track, haha, but I am really looking forward to 2018! 🙂

 

Affiliate income results.

In April of 2018, I earned $59,416 in affiliate income, as outlined earlier in this blog income report.

Earning affiliate income is something that I’m extremely grateful for, especially lately. We have been so busy the last several months and I haven’t spent as much time towards the business as I would normally like.

Even though I am spending less time on the business, I am still earning a great income each month and this allows me to focus on a better work-life balance.

I’m a very big fan of affiliate income, of course. It’s something that I enjoy due to how passive it can be. It makes full-time traveling much more enjoyable when I know I can bring in an income while having fun seeing new areas.

As I always say, blogging income is not dependent on page views. Even brand new bloggers can make money through affiliate marketing. If you know the correct way to promote a product, you can succeed at affiliate marketing. This is one of the main things I teach in my Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course.

My affiliate marketing course went live in July of 2016. I’ve already had over 4,800 people enroll in the course, and I’d love to have you as a student as well!

In the course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing, there are 6 modules, over 30 lessons, several worksheets, bonuses, an extremely helpful and exclusive Facebook group, and more. I go through everything that you need to know about affiliate marketing, such as:

  • A quick introduction to affiliate marketing and how it works
  • The benefits of affiliate marketing
  • The exact steps I’ve taken to earn over $500,000 from a single blog post
  • How to correctly pick affiliate products to promote
  • The steps to increase your conversion rate
  • 80+ affiliate program ideas for different niches
  • How to build trust with your readers (this is a MUST!)
  • The required disclosures you need to know about
  • The major tool you need for affiliate marketing
  • The many different strategies to promote your affiliate links

My course is anything and everything about affiliate marketing. This course is perfect for you whether you are a new blogger or if you’ve been blogging for years, no matter what topic your blog is about, what country you live in, and so on.

I wrote this course so that it would benefit everyone, and there is so much to learn from it.

How was April for you? Are you interested in earning blogging income?

How To Start A Blog Free Email Course

Want to see how I built a $5,000,000 blog?

In this free course, I show you how to create a blog easily, from the technical side all the way to earning your first income and attracting readers. Join now!

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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. Wow, can I have even 10% of one of your “down months” please? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Great job Michelle, keep killing it!

  2. Impressive as always! I’d love for you to interview JL Collins for your series.

    1. What would you like the interview to be about?

  3. Great job! Keep at it! Even for a down month, it’s an incredible result ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Jina

    Well done! always wish for your better future.

  5. Al P.

    Amazing results!! Thank you for sharing!

  6. Mariana

    Hi Michelle!
    You have been a huge inspiration for me on how can I earn money online.
    Thanks and congratulations!
    One quick question … what is the purpose on Facebook Groups in general? I have noticed that a lot of podcast I listen to also have a Facebook group.
    Would it be about help/ encouragement, growing followers, promote courses & webinars?
    Thanks in advance.

    1. For me, I like having a Facebook group because it’s another way to engage with my readers. It’s a place where people can talk about the latest blog posts, as well as get help from one another (like a forum).

  7. As always. Great job!

    These reports are very helpful to motivate us to work more and more to get that number too.
    Keep it up!

    Elizabeta

  8. I am a student of the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course and one of the most valuable things for me has been the exclusive Facebook mastermind group! I can ask questions and easily get them answered by the helpful community. Your income reports are so inspiring, Michelle! Youโ€™re an inspiration for sure ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I LOVE the Facebook group too ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Congrats on another awesome month!

  10. Michelle, you are killing it! I love reading these each month. It’s so motivational!

  11. Grace

    Hey Michelle,

    I find myself saying, โ€œWowโ€, every time I see your monthly income reports in my Inbox.

    Iโ€™m curious. In other posts on your site focusing on โ€œsurveys for cashโ€, the range of payment you quote in most of these is really low. I think, like, $20 is at the high end of the ranges Iโ€™ve seen.

    In April, you earned more than $6K taking surveys. At the high end of the range, youโ€™d have to complete at least 300 surveys (and, thatโ€™s if you got paid $20 for each of them).

    So, my questions are (1) approximately how many surveys did you complete, and (2) how did you manage to do that doing everything else youโ€™re doing and still working less than 40 hours per week?

    Great job, kiddo!

    1. Hey Grace! Thank you for your comment.

      You are misreading my income reports. If you look, the survey income is always listed under “affiliate income.”

      1. Grace

        Ah, gotcha! LOL

  12. I love reading your income reports! So motivating and inspirational for new bloggers like myself! You’re so down to earth and transparent about the hard work that goes into building a succesfull blog with a healthy side of encouragement that it’s possible for any of us!

  13. Vazquez

    I really admire you Michelle and your husband for making such decision and following a dream. My wife and I are just getting started and we read all your articles. We have signed up for almost all of them. It is in our goals to meet both of you at some point in life. We both admire how you guys adventure and live free and that’s exactly what we are pursuing as family. It’s been a while since a joined the community, but this is the first time I leave a comment. Just wanted to say, thank you for your time and dedication.

    -Vazquez

    1. Aww thanks so much! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Doma

    You are always at the top of your Game. I’m learning a lot from your blog. Thanks Michelle.

  15. The Curious Frugal

    Looking forward to reading about your sailing adventures! Have you missed your RV at all since you sold it?

    1. Yes, we have missed it. But, we are super excited for sailing!

  16. Philip

    Thanks for sharing this. I came here after seeing this in your newsletter.
    What keeps you motivated? How are you able to keep content fresh and new especially in an area where the content is pretty much the same from various personalities?

    1. I really enjoy writing and coming up with new things to talk about, so that is definitely a great motivator. Also, my life, in general, is a great motivator. I love that my blog/business allows me to travel full-time, and I don’t want it to end ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Thank your for sharing this. It’s motivational. Wishing you more success ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Hi Michelle,

    I just found your site and have been enjoying it. I have a site that is 3 years old now and gets a lot of daily traffic through SEO (I actually just launched a training case study of what I do called Traffic Victory which sold over 3500 copies and counting, which as you know is a good sized buyers list and a decent chunk of cash)

    While I now see the power of product launching I still think that there are way to many product creators who pump out rehashed crap and I dont want to go that way!

    My site is mostly IM product reviews but Id like to take it in a different direction so that becomes my main source of income (it already is, but Id like to bring those earnings up to 6 figures a year)

    I am thinking of creating a more high ticket offer and start doing coaching but in regards to my site Im not sure which direction to go now…keep reviewing IM products or is there a better way?!

    I know that you are very busy but any tips would be great!

    My best,

    Marc

    PS. Congrats on your massive success and I really do love your openness!

    1. I think this is a personal decision. What do you want to do more?

  19. Those are some insane figures (and at a consistent basis!)

  20. So exciting to live on a boat! I hope you can share photos of the scenery while boating! Maybe you can come to Canada one of these days… (not sure of the rules about boats crossing borders?)

    Congrats on another great month!

    1. We’ll definitely be crossing borders ๐Ÿ™‚ That’s why we’re moving onto a boat!

  21. As always very inspiring Michelle!
    The boat life sounds very interesting! Following your journey on Insta too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Nick Heil

    Hi Michelle, I really enjoy your monthly income reports. Can you share some of the things you did in the early days to bring traffic to your blog? How did you get the attention of other popular websites and individuals to really charge your websites viewership?

  23. As a new blogger, this is so inspiring. You’re doing amazing things that my mind can’t even comprehend at the moment. Great job Michelle! Thank you for being so transparent and opening up about how you’re making your income. Its giving me inspiration and hope.

  24. Siddhant Satija

    100k+$ a month is a big inspiration, thanks for boosting my inspiration to a next level. looking forward to more from you , Michelle. One day i want to leave my job and ask my wife too to leave and be a succesful blogger couple like you guys.

  25. Anishad

    It’s really amazing and I love to do Affiliated marketing. Anyway thanks for great motivating post. And it encouraging me to write more posts lol

  26. Yep, affiliated marketing is the way to go. I speak with so many people who run such websites that now I feel the competition is too high. So, my question is: does it make sense to enter such a market when there are tons of websites already vying for the top results on search and are already all over the place?

    1. There’s plenty of room ๐Ÿ™‚ I talk about this in one of my featured questions – https://www.makingsenseofcents.com/2018/01/how-i-made-money-online-2017.html

  27. Hi Michelle, You are making a blast with affiliate marketing. I never knew one can earn so much through affiliates. I’ll try out few on my blog soon. Thank you for sharing (and inspiring). Cheers!

  28. Dinesh Kumar

    Hey Michelle,
    Most people think full-time jobs are the best way to get a good income. That is so not true! Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to earn a significant income. Thanks for sharing. Keep up the good work.

    1. Erica

      Hi Michelle,
      I’m looking for your income report where you mention the person who changed your site to https. I’ve been looking through the income reports but I’m having a hard time because their are so many. Could you help me out? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

      1. I used imarkinteractive ๐Ÿ™‚

        1. erica

          You are the best

  29. Truly amazing! You are an inspiration not only to bloggers but to every entrepreneur who wants to earn money while being their own boss.

  30. Huge inspirational post i have ever read,

    Thanks for sharing some real ways to make money from blogging efforts. I am currently working on Amazon associates and will soon start on Bluehost as well.

  31. Janet

    Hi Michelle,
    Thank you for posting so openly about your blogging success. I just found your site this month and it inspired me to start working on my own blog, something I have been wanting to do for a long time. Looking forward to learning more from you, and thanks again for being an inspiration.

  32. Hi Michelle,

    It’s very inspiring that you made that much money in April with blogging. I’ve recommended this business model to friends and family members who enjoy writing but they all just either say it’s a good idea and never start or they never get passed their first post or two. Sometimes you just want to shake someone and say “don’t you realize the possibilities are endless if you can just keep at it and stay consistent!”. Anyway, thanks for your post it was very inspiring.

    -Anthony