Where does Blogging Income Come From?

Disclaimer:  This post contains affiliate links.


Many of you were intrigued by my post yesterday, where I shared about making enough to cover your monthly groceries (and then some), by running and growing a blog like this one.    One thing that I didn’t really make clear was where this money comes from.  It all depends on your goals and your vision of your blog.  Here’s some ways that the money comes in (and no, you don’t have to ask for money all the time!).


Blogging Incom


The money you earn blogging can come from many different avenues.  Here’s several that are pretty common among bloggers:

1.  Sidebar and Header Ads – You can use Google Adsense or many other ad networks that pay a cost per thousand (CPM) and/or a cost per click (CPC) basis.  The money you earn from this increases as the traffic to your blog increases.

2.  Sell your own digital products – I was hesitant to do this in the beginning, but after being told that it is a great way to add an income stream to my business and having several readers request it, I finally caved and turned my weekly Crockpot Freezer Meals menus into printables that were available for purchase.  It was the best thing that I could’ve done!  While that income fluctuates depending on the season, it has definitely been a stream of income that I don’t want to go away!

3.  Sponsored Posts – Companies want their products in front of consumers.  They are turning to bloggers more and more to share what they love about these company’s products.  You can solicit your own sponsored posts or sign up with a company to do this for you.  Either way, the  more traffic your blog sees, the better the sponsored post will pay.

4.  Social Media Management/Virtual Assistant Work – Some bloggers use their blog as a platform to gain other employment avenues online.  They may get hired to run social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram) for a company or to do other odd jobs that other bloggers need done.  Bloggers who are making money are happy to hire experienced virtual assistants to help them keep on top of the tasks that they have at hand.

5.  Affiliate income – When you link to another store (like Amazon) or another blogger’s product, you can make a percentage of income off of that person’s purchase.  Sometimes it can literally be pennies, but other times, it can be $20 or more a pop.  It all depends on the product you’re linking to and what exactly they’re buying.  You can get creative on sharing about these products by sharing how you use them and how they help your family.  It doesn’t have to be a weird salesy pitch, but just a natural event of sharing why you use the product and what you like about it in a natural story sort of way.

6.  Facebook/Twitter Parties – You can work together with a company to promote them and charge them for it.  You put together a party that showcases the business and all they have to offer.  You charge them whatever you feel it’s worth.

7.  Product Reviews – This falls closely to the Sponsored post, but I gave it it’s own category because sometimes, you don’t get paid to do a product review.  Generally, you should always request to be paid for a sponsored post, but in some cases, you do a free review of the product in exchange for the product.  This would be counted as income on your taxes and should only be done if it will save you a lot of money or if it’s something you would blog about anyway, regardless if they gave it to you or not.

8.  Sell Physical Products – Some people use blogging to sell physical products from.  They may be a distributor for a direct sales company or they may make their own products and/or have their own products manufactured to sell.  I have recently tackled this venue.  I am slowly beginning to develop my own kitchen line of products, marketed under the name, “The Sidetracked Kitchen”.  Here’s a sneak peak at my first product:


3 Pc Flexi-Pour Measuring Cup Set with LidsI’ll tell you more about this product soon, but it was produced to be sold on Amazon as well as my blog.


9.  Become an Author – Many, many bloggers have developed such an audience through the years that they are able to get a book deal from it.  This is definitely on my bucket list of things to accomplish, but I am not in any hurry.  I have 7 kids and I homeschool, so I don’t have as much time to focus on this as I will in the future.  I just mention it because it has become a reality for many, many bloggers, and depending on the work you’re willing to put in, could become your reality as well.


Currently the majority of my income comes from ads, sponsored posts and digital product sales.


Yesterday, I put some feelers out to see if any of you were interested in a monthly subscription service to teach you how to start and grow a blog so that you, too can earn an income from it.  I began by just trying to earn enough to buy our groceries and it’s steadily grown into more than that.  Blogging is one of the topics I’m asked about the most (It’s a passion that I love!) and I would love the opportunity to teach this fun skill to you.  Depending on the amount of interest we have, I will begin a beta class to teach subscribers how to grow their blog into something that can help them pay the bills as well.  If you think you’d like to be a part of this, do me a favor and fill out this form to let me know.  If you already did this yesterday, you don’t need to do it again.

How Blogging Can Pay the Grocery Bills (and more)



Have I ever told you my blogging story?  The story of why I started blogging?  My IRL (in real life) friends ask me this often, but I don’t think I have ever gotten around to telling my online friends much about it.


I first became a professional blogger nearly 4 years ago.  (By professional, I mean one who is attempting to and hopefully actively earning money by blogging).  I had just had my 6th baby, but my 1st C-section.  This particular baby was unusually fussy, so I would spend my days in my recliner, nursing and recovering from the abdominal surgery I recently had.  Even though I had plenty of kids to talk to, I found that I was growing unreasonably antsy and all out bored with how long I had to sit around, nursing, feeling like I wasn’t getting anything accomplished.  One night, I was chatting with my friend on the computer, when she told me about how she makes enough money on her blog to pay her grocery bills.  A light bulb went off.  How does she do that?  I mean, she has a huge family like me, groceries would easily cost her $600 to $1000 per month!


My poor friend didn’t know that she had just opened a can of worms.  We had been living paycheck to paycheck for years and I was always looking for ways to make some extra money so that we could do fun things with the family.  I began asking her what probably felt like an  overwhelming amount of blogging related questions!  Who would’ve thought that there was so much to know about running a website?  I decided to start my own site, knowing that it would take a while before I could actually earn money from it.  I gave myself 2 years.  I began making money before the 2 year mark, but I was making more than enough for groceries and more by the end of 2 years.  After about 4-6 months of asking my friend question after question, I was finally confident enough to make decisions on my own.


The great thing about blogging is that you can talk about the things that you love and you can help people in the process.  You make tons of great friends and get to do things you otherwise wouldn’t be able to.  I’ve made a lot of mistakes through the years and wish that I had done some things differently.  But I’ve learned so much, too.  I’ve been asked repetitively by friends and family how to make money blogging.  The fact is that there are so many different directions you can take and there’s so much information to learn.  It can be overwhelming without a guide to help you along the way.


I’m toying with the idea of putting together a mentorship program for those of you who are intrigued by the idea of starting a blog but have no idea where to start.  You may not have a close friend to guide you like I did.  I have such a passion for this subject and I’ve learned so much in the process, I’d love to teach other families how to grow their income.  If I do this, it will be a monthly membership program, with a monthly fee.  I would provide a Facebook group with weekly assignments and training videos.  Most importantly, I would be available to you, to answer your questions while you’re growing your blog and still a part of the group.


If this is something that interests you, you would need to:

  1. Be aware that blogging is not a get rich quick scheme.  It takes lots of dedication and hard work to get over the hump before you start earning.  Sometimes it can take 2-3 years before you start seeing a steady cash flow.
  2. Realize that you have to invest money to make money.  Not a lot.  You can start with a $10 per month hosting plan to host your website on.  Sometimes you have to pay people to do things that are difficult for you or too time consuming.  You CAN take the time to learn them if you have it, but realize that sometimes, you’ll move faster if you choose to hire certain jobs out.  I do not know how to do everything.  I’m not some crazy computer whiz.  I either learn as I go or I hire it out.
  3. You need to think about a niche that you’d like to be in.  Perhaps you love DIY projects?  Maybe you’re everybody’s favorite cook?  Maybe you’re the coupon clipping queen?  Maybe you have  special needs child?  Maybe you’re a crocheter and love to share patterns and other tips?  Are you a homeschooler who would love to share her knowledge?  An entrepreneur?  See?  There’s so many different blogs that you could start.  It can be hard to narrow it down to what you want to write about.  I consider my blog a lifestyle blog, where I share what we do in our every day life.  It is heavy on the food side, because food is what brings a lot of my readers in, but I love sharing about other aspects of our life as well.  When thinking about a blog name, try to name it something that people would search for in Google.  That would give you a better chance at ranking quicker than those of us who didn’t do that (like me).


If you realize the above statements and are thinking them through and would still be interested in joining a beta class with me, please fill out this form.  I’m trying to gauge interest at this time.  I don’t want to spend time focusing on this if you all have no interest in it at all.  If you have any questions, just email me at sidetrackedsarah@gmail.com.  Of course, if you received this in your email, you can always hit the reply button and it’ll come straight to me!

Crock Pot Cheesy Bacon Dip

I’ve always been a sucker for dips.  There’s something about eating dip …. chips, veggies, fruit, or almost anything that you can dip into different kinds of dips, makes it taste better.  When my 18 year old was just a toddler, I’d give him cooked green beans and get him some ketchup to dip them into so that he would eat something green.  He loved it.  He thought it was fun to dip his food.


Well, this recipe is much more fun than green beans in ketchup.  This recipe has cream cheese and bacon!  And if you think you don’t like cream cheese, maybe you haven’t tried this dip!  My mother-in-law always told us how she doesn’t like cream cheese, then she tried this dip and suddenly it was the best dip she’d ever had.  She had no idea it had cream cheese in it.  It turns out, she just thought she didn’t like cream cheese.  Now, I can’t say that I’ll ever get her to eat recipes with cream cheese  in them on a regular basis, but I will keep trying.  :)


Bacon Cheese Dip


Here’s the recipe:



  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 1½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • ½ cup sliced green onion


  1. Stir together all ingredients.
  2. Place in slow cooker and cook on low until heated through.
  3. Can turn to Keep Warm once heated through so that it doesn’t scorch.



You can serve this with cut up vegetables, french bread, crackers or chips.  We doubled this recipe, because we made it for a large party AND we served it with tortilla chips.


Crockpot Cheesy Bacon Dip