I had the privilege of spending some time with my sweet friend Crystal from Money Saving Mom yesterday, and we had an interesting discussion (well, we had quite a few of them)! It led me to really evaluate how I disclose affiliate and referral links in my posts! I have a Disclosure Policy, but I’m not sure how many of you have read it, so I wanted to share a little bit about how I earn some money from this blog (now, to be honest with you, I don’t earn much at this point. Because my blog is so new, I still consider this more of a ministry than a job)!
How Do I Earn Money from This Blog?
There are several ways bloggers earn money (I’m still learning about all the ways to do this!), but one of the main ways I earn money is through affiliate links. These are links to a specific company that include tracking information, so if you make a purchase through my link, I earn a small percentage of the sale. I don’t have affiliate links for all the stores I share bargains for, but I do for quite a few of them.
I also earn a small amount when you click and print coupons from certain sites (again, not every coupon I post earns money), and I use my referral links for the daily deal sites like Groupon, so when you sign-up I earn a referral credit. I also have some advertising in my sidebar that earns a small amount of money!
Why Am I Telling You This?
Back when I started following deal blogs, I just thought they were doing it out of the goodness of their heart — so when I found out they were “making money” off me, I was a little shocked. I actually felt a little self-righteous….”How dare they profit off of me!” I quickly realized this was a selfish reaction, because these bloggers were pouring in hours of their time to find deals and share them!
When I began The Amazing Mess, I also quickly realized how much time and effort — not to mention money for design and the website itself — was involved. My nine months of blogging last year earned me a total of $200 — and I spent more than that on a new camera!! So, right now, that blog really is just a labor of love!
Motherhood on a Dime is even more time intensive. I average 20 – 25 hours per week. At this point, I’ve calculated I earn about $2-$3 an hour!! I don’t get paid for writing any of the store match-ups, so my affiliate links and sidebar ads are the main source of income!
Now, I’m not telling you this so you think I’m a charity case! I actually do believe God has a reason for me sharing through this blog, and although I often don’t feel quite adequate to be the one writing it…I’m trying to be obedient. I love helping people save money and learn to spend wisely. Frugality is more than just bargains, and so I hope I also share content that encourages you as well!
What Does This Mean For You?
One thing that is very important to me is my integrity! I just want to be really honest with you. At this point, I’m not doing it for the money…although I have high hopes that eventually I’ll make minimum wage (or more)!! I NEVER post anything I don’t believe is a good deal – I only post things I would actually consider buying or doing myself!
I have added a sentence at the bottom of all my posts with my disclosure, because I don’t ever want it to seem like I’m hiding it or being secretive!! You NEVER have to feel like you need to go through my links. If it upsets you, please don’t! But if you want to support my time and effort, I’m very thankful for any of your clicks, prints, and purchases.
Most important to me are my readers! I really want to use this blog to help you and bless you! If you have any questions about this, please let me know!
**Update: Since I wrote this post over a year ago, I have finally begun to make a little bit more…and I’m almost at minimum wage if you consider all the hours I put in! I just wanted to let you know — and make sure I’m being honest and transparent with you. Thanks so much for supporting me!!