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!

My Favorite Summer Time Snack or Side

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Pringles® Summer Jam.Tracking Pixel



Pringles Summer Jam Sweeps


Our family seems to travel quite a bit during the summer months.  So far, this summer alone, I’ve been to 3 different theme parks with my kids.  That’s not a normal thing for me, but this summer, that’s just the way it worked out.  On many of our trips, we tend to pack lunches to save money.  We discovered that 2 of the 3 theme parks are so incredibly family friendly that they let you bring food in!  Pretty cool, huh?


We typically always bring sandwiches and chips, but we’ve found that if we ever bring bagged chips, they get crushed.  So….instead, we always pack Pringles®.  We love the variety of flavors and just love that we don’t have to eat smashed chips.  But another fun thing, we love how we can make music with the cans.  Have you ever taken a Pringles can and used it as a drum?  Or taken the last little bit of chips in there and used it as a shaker?  Yeah… me, too.  In fact, I used to do it when I was little, too.  As soon as a can of Pringles® was eaten, I’d grab the empty can and stash it in my room for some drums.  I think I borrwowed some of my mom’s pots and pans for this drum set as well.


Pringles Drummers




Pringles & Colton


Funny enough, I never went on to play the drums.  I did however learn to play the piano and the flute.  My mom was a piano teacher and instilled the love of music in our lives at an early age.  She’s even taught my kids to play the piano and my son is now taking guitar lessons.  Music has long sense a part of our lives!


We were having a Pringles® party outside, trying out our can drums and the baby (toddler, really) kept stealing them.  She just happens to love Pringles®, too!


Pringles & Quinnly



Pringles Runaway


It turns out that I’m not the only one to ever try out playing the drums on my Pringles® cans.  Apparently, it’s an online sensation.  Pringles® has challenged Percussion Prodigies to try out their Pringles® cans as drums and you should see some of the pieces they put together.  Here’s a video that was shared on the Pringles® website.


This one is probably my favorite….



But there’s several more good ones on their site here.


If you’re looking to make the most out of summer, Pringles® is offering you and a friend the chance to win a VIP experience to a Live Nation concert in the U.S.  (There’s lots of different concerts to choose from on the Live Nation site)


  • Just pick up a specially marked can of Pringles®, enter your code online and you could find yourself on an adventure of a lifetime.
  • Sweepstakes is open until 7/31/15 at 11:59pm ET.


If I were to win this sweepstakes, I’d take my husband to one of his favorite country music bands.   Maybe Tim McGraw or Kenny Chesney…..we’ll see.  What would you go to?


Would you like some Pringles®?


Pringles & Savannah



Abbreviated Rules. No Purchase Necessary. Open to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and District of Columbia who are 18 years of age or older at time of entry, and are a registered Twitter user. To enter and/or for complete Official Rules, go to https://www.pringles.com/us/promotions/summer-jam-2015/percussion-prodigies/official-rules.html. Promotion ends on 7/31/15 at 11:59:59 PM (ET). Subject to complete Official Rules. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Kellogg Company, One Kellogg Square, Battle Creek, MI  49016.


This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Pringles® Summer Jam.