My First Blog Income Report – $61.83

I am so excited to share my very first blog income report! This is so exciting and shocking.

I didn’t make much, but it doesn’t matter to me. This blog is an outlet and a way to connect to other bloggers, so having actual blog income is stunning.

If you are thinking about starting a blog, this tutorial will help you start a blog today. I wrote a ‘how to start a blog’ post that will help you:

  • Decide what to write about! I am sharing over 50+ ideas for you to blog about.
  • Show you how to set up your blog online (it’s like a 15-minute process)
  • Get a FREE domain name for a year! (this usually costs around $15)

My blog income strategy

In January 2015, I bought my blog and decided to get serious and treat it more like a business.

I really wanted to make blogging a side hustle that earned me money!

While I loved the idea of blogging as a hobby, I really wanted to earn income from it!

I finally got confident enough to comment on other bloggers’ posts (shy, introvert personality here), joined Twitter, and signed up with Pinterest.

At the start of 2015, I committed to writing 2-3 times a week, improving my photos and making my website more user-friendly.

Using Bluehost, I paid for a domain and a WordPress website, used a free theme and had no idea what I was doing.

This was my only expense for my first several months of blogging. Talk about a cheap, low cost to start an online blog/business!

Ad income

I knew I wanted to monetize my blog and earn blog income at some point, so I added Google Adsense onto my website.

What is Google Adsense?

It’s a free, entry-level of ads you put on your website to help your blog make money.

It is one of the harder ways to earn income, so don’t expect to get rich overnight!

Ad income comes from traffic to your website. So in the early stages, you will still be growing and won’t have a lot of traffic. Thus, low income from ads.

As time goes on, you will get more traffic and start earning income from ads!

I read over and over again that blog income from Adsense would take time to build and that is definitely true when just starting out.

All in all, it took ten months of blogging to get my first $100 paycheck from Google.

This was the hardest way for me to earn income as a new blogger with low traffic.

Affiliate Income

Next, I added a few affiliate links to my blog based on the products I was currently using.

I was comfortable telling my audience about a book I read, a blog theme I installed myself, and a product I used on the blog or in real life in some of my blog posts.

I chose to only add affiliate links that I could 100% recommend to others.

By adding a couple of products that I recommended, some of my readers ended up purchasing them.

This was a win-win!

First, I was able to share my experience and give an honest review of something I was using.

Second, a reader trusted my opinion and used my link to make a purchase.

The reader was able to get the item for the standard price (there’s no extra pricing added) and I was able to earn a commission.

How exciting!

So drum roll please…

My first blog income breakdown

Here are my earnings from my first monthly blog income report.

Ad Income

I have set up Google AdSense but did not earn any paid income.

I made around $15 from ads on my blog.

Because I have not met the $100 threshold for payout, I am counting this as $0 in paid income.

Affiliate Income

I actually earned more than $80, but some of the affiliate sales are not paid out until the following month.

Because of this, I have decided to only report income when I actually receive payment.

My affiliate sources are small but pretty diversified.

As a new blogger, I am starting off slow with affiliate links.

I am still learning how to use them, how I can write about them in my blog posts, and how to make sure my recommendations help other people!

Products I recommended and personally use

The affiliate sales from my first income report come from four different sources.

Right now I am recommending:

Rakuten – This is where you get free cashback when you shop online! You literally get cash back when you make an online purchase. The cash is deposited into your PayPal account.

If you want to try Rakuten, use my exclusive link to get $10 off your first $25 purchase AND earn cash back.

Ibotta – This is a free cell phone app. You use it after you go grocery shopping and use your receipt.

It’s basically a rebate app, so you can earn anywhere from 50 cents to $5 off everything you buy.

If you want to grab the Ibotta app and start making money off your grocery receipts, click here to get started.

You will receive a cash bonus of $10 when you scan your first item! 

Restored 316 Designs – I picked this company to pick a pretty theme and style for my blog.

There are a ton of themes to choose from depending on your blogging niche, what colors you like, and layout.

How to select affiliate products in order to earn blog income

I think it’s really important to be a part of different affiliates as I don’t want to depend on just one source.

I actually had two more affiliate sales from different sources from the previous month, but as I mentioned above, they do not pay out until this month so I am not including them in my March blog income report.

As I am only counting income received, I had $61.83 that was deposited into my PayPal and bank accounts!

Expenses from my first blog income report

My only expense was paying for a professional email for $5 per month.

I did not include my expenses from Bluehost, as I paid for my domain name and hosting a year in advance.

I did not have any other blog expenses.

Starting a blog is one of the cheapest start-up side hustles you can start compared to other businesses. Yippee!

Blog income motivation

I have no idea what my blog income report will be next month.

Part of me thinks this is a fluke and can’t be real and the other part of me is in total disbelief and shock!

I’ve been reading so many other blog income reports from bloggers I admire, so to finally have my own monthly income report is so exciting and amazing!

Clearly I can’t quit my day job yet, but I am still excited that I have proven I can make money online from blogging.

What’s happened since I published my first income report

Although I published this income report in 2015, I wanted to update this blog post and share that I have now been blogging for more than five years.

I’m excited to report that blogging changed my life.

I quit my job in October 2015 to blog full time! You can read about my big announcement here.

In under a year, I was able to:

  • Grow my blog from 1K to 200,000+ monthly page views
  • Quit my day job in 10 months to work for myself
  • Started freelancing online as a Pinterest virtual assistant

Additional Monthly Income Reports

After writing this first income report, I decided I would continue to write monthly blog income reports.

I like being transparent and share what works, how much money I make, what I need to work on, and more!

My monthly income reports are a great way for me to reflect where I am with my blog and see my progression over the years.

Since writing my first income report, I have gone on to publish more than 50+ monthly income reports over more than four years.

Here is just a small example of some of my income reports from my first twelve months of blogging.

As you can see, each month I started to make more and more money online.

I also wrote a recap on how I increased my blog income over a 16 month period that can be read here.

I share very specific information month by month that helped increase my income.

Don’t let any fear of blogging hold you back

One of the biggest lessons I learned was that fear was holding me back from believing in myself and my blog.

I was scared to share my feelings, scared I would fail and that no one would read my blog.

I bet you might have some of the same fears if you have been nervous to start a blog. You can read the post here.

How to start a blog

If you are ready to start yourself, read this tutorial on how to start a blog.

In the tutorial, I share over 50+ blogging ideas, walk you step-by-step on how to set your blog and what to do after you launch your blog.

You will also learn how to pick a blog name and get it for free!

Thank you for reading my first blog income report! Do you have any questions?

Here is my first blog income report. This was the first time I made money online from a blog. I'm sharing how I made my first $60 in this online income report.
This post may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure for more info.

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185 Comments

  1. Sarah Xenias says:

    I am stalking your blog currently because I am about to start my own blog and I am soaking in all the tips you are giving out!
    Thank you for helping others!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Glad to help!

  2. I’m pretty sure you are making a lot more now! It took me 6 months to earn my first dollar online.

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thank you! It did take a few months but it DOES start to snowball! Congrats – the first $1 and first $100 seem the hardest, but it let’s you know this really works. Good luck!

    2. What specific challenges did you encounter as a new blogger when trying to monetize your blog, and how did you overcome them to generate your first blog income?

  3. This is so helpful. Thank you for being so transparent. Iโ€™m a new blogger, unemployed and hopeful.

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thank you Farrah!

  4. This blog makes me want to switch my career. Just 1 question, are there any hidden charges in blogging?

  5. The first month I made around $1 and some cents, and the Second month I made $142 with my blog, Now I have a plan to write more and more content on my blog thanks for sharing!

  6. Your income report is really motivating me, and am glad to have found it online Kristin. Thanks a bunch my dear.

  7. Congratulations on your first income. I’m also a blogger but I’m still struggling but your success inspires me to continue…

  8. Thank you so much for posting this! I just started a personal finance blog and am really looking for some motivation to keep going. I love reading other personal finance blogger’s first income report because it keeps me motivated knowing that one of these days I will start to earn money.

    I love your affiliates!

  9. Hey Kristin,
    Thanks for sharing your blogging income. This really inspires me and other bloggers. Could you say something about to start blogging now? Is it good or not?

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      It’s always a good time to start a blog. Your voice is unique!

  10. Wow, this post really inspired me. Thank you for sharing.
    Fear is holding me back, but I’m going to read your post about it when you felt it too.

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Glad to help!

  11. Hands down the most relatable and inspiring blog income report I and “come-up” story I have read! I am so happy I stumbled upon your page! Can’t wait to binge-read all your posts today haha. Thank you so much for being so open and honest Kristin! <3

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thank you so much!

  12. Glad for you, Kristen. This was encouraging. If you donโ€™t mind, how often were you posting new articles at the start?

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      For my first year as a new blogger, I wrote and published a post 3x per week for an entire year! This helped me stay accountable and grow fast. =

  13. It’s nice to finally see a realistic blog report (in fact I found this page googling ‘realistic blog income report’).
    Don’t get me wrong, I love reading about blogs that pick up $40,000 in the space of a week, but it’s not actionable for a small blog, and can lead to a lot of misunderstandings and mistakes.
    Also great to see that your income has gotten almost 100x bigger since then – well done!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Ha yes, I started sharing income reports from the very beginning. It’s definitely a long game, no quick overnight success for me! ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. First, thanks for being so transparent and sharing this. Itโ€™s inspirational, truly. Although, I was confused about a comment you made. How does commenting on others blog post help? Iโ€™m a newbie blogger and a new mom. I have a daughter with a disability so Iโ€™m home with her unable to work right now so I REALLY need to make my blog profitable ASAP. In it for the long game, so slow and steady is fine, though, not ideal. Iโ€™m trying EVERYTHING I can to make my first $1. Just started trying to earn this month (a few days ago actually). My blog is almost 2 months old and Iโ€™ve been trying to use affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, and ad clicks as a means to see revenue but no such luck. If you get a chance pop by my page. Iโ€™ve worked soooo hard on it. LenasLitLife.com

        1. Kristin Larsen says:

          I personally like commenting on other blogs that I read because I like them! It’s a great way to build a relationship with other bloggers.

  14. Hi Kristin!
    Your post was really helpful as I’m just getting started with my blog mommyunmasked.com

    I appreciate the goal setting workbook, so thank you for including that. Now I need to get to work finding some affiliates!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      YAY, glad to help!

  15. I’m so new to all of this. I’ve always just really wanted to start a blog and never knew where to start. Until I stumbled across your blog. If I’m half as successful as you I’ll be content! Thanks for sharing such personal information and being awesome!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by, I appreciate you!

  16. That’s amazing to read your income report, I am so confident about blogging now. From 61.83$ to $5+ within a year is amazing.
    I was little confused about blogging earning but your report it’s truly motivational for me.

  17. Congratulations! You are doing great and you are an inspiration to many. Thanks

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  18. Pushkar Patil says:

    hi I am a 19 year old boy and I want to start my blogging career in technology related blogs so what should I do to start the blog and also how to get more page views as I want to be a full time blogger

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Hi there! I would check out this post first on how to start a blog and get everything setup. The best way that I started getting traffic was to start using Pinterest. Here is a case study I wrote about how I went from no traffic to 200,000+ monthly page views quickly. Good luck!

  19. So inspiring! I’m curious, what’s the one thing you did in those early days that made the biggest impact on your traffic and thus your income?
    Keep up the great work!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      This is a good post to read – I break it all down month by month and my strategies ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. Wow, this is so inspiring to see how great you are doing from beginning to now. To see that the little bit of money I am making on my blogging has the possibility to increase like yours did. Thank you for sharing this!!

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      Thanks! It was super exciting and I’m so glad I’ve stuck with blogging as it’s crazy how much the income can increase over time! Good luck with your blog!

  21. Hey Kristin,

    Thanks for sharing your experience. It’s definitely getting the wheels turning in my head. I can relate to the whole introvert thing for sure. For me, writing seems to flow a lot easier than other avenues of communication. I was bouncing off ideas with my wife on how I could supplement our income while using my gift of writing. Army family, two kids and a dog. Maybe I can make a family blog aimed at those who are considering military life. I’m still in the planning and research phase, but you definitely helped me along the way. Thanks.

    1. Kristin Larsen says:

      You can definitely freelance or start a blog if you enjoy writing ๐Ÿ™‚ There’s a lot of great military-based blogs out there as well, so that’s a great niche! Good luck!

  22. This is really motivating. I started my blog 2 months ago, but still have almost no monthly viewers (less than 1K). Am I doing something wrong? Or everything wrong? Thanks for the inspiration to keep going.