March 2016 Blogging Income Report

Here's my monthly income report where I detail how I make money at home! Last month I made $7.178 by blogging at home. I share exactly how I make money online, detailing each source of income. I make money blogging and I share how you can, too. Find out my tricks today!

Welcome to my third monthly blogging income report!

These reports have turned out to be pretty popular, so I’m continuing to share exactly how I make money blogging.

Why I Share Income Reports

I share how much money I make every month for a few reasons.

I share these reports because they help me stay accountable.

The fact that I know I must publish my income every month pushes me outside of my comfort zone so I can continue improving each and every month.

Another reason I share is to inspire. I want to inspire you to start making extra money.

This used to be my hobby and now it’s my career. Extra income can change your life!

Believe it or not, I started way back in 2012 after reading blog income reports from other personal finance bloggers that I can now call my friends.

If you’re already inspired you can take action today. If you want to start your own blog, get started today by signing up for your own self-hosted WordPress blog through Bluehost.

Self-Employment Has Unlimited Income Potential

Each month I like to share some aspect I love about being self-employed. This month I’ve been contemplating the idea that self-employment has unlimited income potential. I can make as much money as I want. I just have to build a business that can generate the income.

Back when I was working a day job, my income was limited to how much my employer was willing to pay me. There is no way I could come up with something crazy enough for them to double my salary, even if I saved my company four times my salary each year.

Now, if I want to make more money I just have to find a way to make it happen. I like that much better than waiting for my employer to give me a 3% annual pay increase.

Let’s get to the fun part of this income report. Here’s how much I made last month!

Related: No More Traditional Day Job! I’m Self-Employed!

March 2016 Income Report – $7,178

March 2016 was another record month as far as income goes! In my February report, I was skeptical I could beat my then best ever income month, but I managed to squeak it out.

I’d say I’m not sure I could beat my March income, but I’m starting to realize that I can make as much money as I’m willing to work to get. I don’t know if I’ll beat my March income in April, but I hope I have a higher month than March by the end of 2016 for sure.

Right now, my long shot goal is to have one month where I earn at least $10,000 in online related income. Will it happen before the end of 2016? I hope so!

Now it’s time to spill the beans. Here’s exactly what I did to earn $7,178 in March.

Related: February 2016 Income Report – $6,675

Related: January 2016 Income Report – $4,160

Traditional Ads

I host traditional advertisements on my blog. They don’t make me rich, but they help keep the lights on. Basically, traditional ads are the banner ads you see at the top, middle and bottom of most posts.

Chances are, you gloss right over them and don’t even notice them. I know I rarely notice them when I surf the web.

Branded Content

Branded content isn’t anywhere near as passive as traditional ads. Brands normally get in touch with me to see if I’d be interested in inserting their brand into either a new post or a post I’ve already written.

In the past, companies would try to get an additional benefit of what is called a dofollow link. Basically, this helps companies show up higher in search results.

Google frowns on this, so I have to make sure my branded content always uses nofollow links so my links don’t affect search results.

If I agree that a branded content partnership will help my readers and the company is willing to pay my rates, I’ll normally work with them. However, I won’t work with a company that could hurt my readers, such as a loan shark company.

One recent collaboration example is my recent tax post that incorporated Block Advisors.

Affiliate Income

Affiliate income isn’t something I really got started on until later in my blog’s life.

It’s a bit tougher to learn how to implement than traditional advertising, but I think I’m slowly getting the hang of it. If you ever make a breakthrough, you can earn a ton of money through affiliate advertising.

I earn affiliate income by linking to products or services of an advertiser. When someone clicks one of those links and buys that product or service the company pays me a commission or fee.

Affiliate marketing is one of the more enjoyable forms of advertising because I can promote things that I believe will help my readers and get paid for it.

The offers that readers buy are the exact same, or sometimes better, than the offers available to the general public so there is no reason to not insert an affiliate ad if I was going to talk about a product anyway.

If you want to see exactly how affiliate advertising works, you can check out my review of the cell phone service provider Republic Wireless. I share a 100% honest review of their service and inserted links for readers to sign up for the service if they think it is a good fit.

If a reader signs up for a new phone line through my link, I’ll get paid a commission. The best part is, the reader will save a ton of money, easily hundreds of dollars per year versus the big 4 providers, on their monthly cell phone bill by switching. Everyone wins!

Related: Republic Wireless Review Including Moto E and Moto G Cell Phone Reviews

Freelance Writing

Freelance writing income isn’t money I make here on, but I earn it as a direct result of my work here.

My first client loved my writing on my blog and reached out to me to see if I’d be willing to write for their website. I said yes and the rest is history. I now write for a few different websites and earn a nice bit of money for my work.

If you want to get started in freelance writing, your best bet is to set up your own website with samples of your work.

Money Manifesto had a couple years worth of writing samples when my first client came along, but if you know you want to be a freelance writer, just a few sample articles should do the trick if you’re proactively reaching out to potential clients.

Pay was lower in the beginning, but as I built up a freelance writing resume I’ve been able to increase my rates. Those just starting out can make around $25 per article but the rates can get much higher as you gain experience.

I know some people that make hundreds of dollars per article!

Building A Business Takes Time

It’s completely possible to build up a business quickly if you put in an insane amount of work in a very efficient fashion. I took another route. I built my business in my spare time during evenings and weekends until I felt confident enough to leave my job.

It took three and a half years to build to the point where I left my job. You can do the same and build up a business on the side or you can build a business quicker if you’re willing to put in the work and time on an insane level.

I made a few thousand dollars my first year. Through trial and error I found out what I enjoyed and what types of income would be sustainable. Once I figured out the magic combination, my business started to grow to where it is today.

Building this business is the best thing I ever did. If you want to build your own business, you should quit procrastinating and get started today.

Want to Start Making Money? Start Your Own Blog

Starting a blog was the key to me beginning to earn money online. I was hesitant to get started, but it turns out starting a blog was one of the best things I ever did for my earning potential.

I went ahead and paid for self-hosting when I got started because other bloggers said it was the way to go. They were right!

Due to the fact that I was self-hosted, I was able to sell my first ever private advertisement for hundreds of dollars within just a few months of starting my blog. If I was on one of the free platforms, that advertiser wouldn’t have been interested in my blog at all.

I also wouldn’t have gotten the itch to try to grow my online income into what is now my full time employment.

Self-hosting allows MoneyManifesto to look more professional. I have my own web domain and the ability to do whatever I want to my site, including adding ad space from whatever advertiser or network I want.

I don’t have to play by the rules of the free blog platforms. I get to make my own rules.

If you’re serious about starting a blog or a business online, go ahead and go with self-hosted WordPress, not the free sites. You’ll save yourself the headache of having to switch to self-hosted WordPress later.

If you want to start a blog, get started by buying a hosting package from Bluehost today.

Personally, I think everyone should just go ahead and get the one year package to save some money on a per month basis. Signing up for a whole year of hosting will make sure you stay motivated to get your site off the ground.

I know if I only paid for a month at a time, I may have cancelled before my site started growing. One year is enough time to get everything rolling.

If you’re ready to get started on your blogging journey, sign up for a self-hosted website on Bluehost today.

Have any questions about this income report? Leave a note in the comments and I’ll be sure to get back to you!

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About Lance Cothern

Lance Cothern, a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia, is the founder of Money Manifesto. You can read more about him here or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Pinterest.


  1. This is amazing how much money can be made online in just one month, the sky is the limit! Great job! Reading income reports that other bloggers publish is very inspiring indeed. Good luck reaching your goal of $10K, at this rate you will be there in no time! 🙂

  2. Hey Lance!

    Very nice income man. I hope to reach your level in a year or so. 🙂

    Quick question, why do you not have any detailed breakdowns of your earnings? Was it a personal decision or just something you never thought about?


    • Hi Ilya! Thanks for the question. Right now I’ve decided not to publish my detailed income sources for some personal reasons but that may change in the future. I do share every type of income I make, but I’m still getting comfortable with sharing my income so maybe the detailed breakdown will come later.

  3. Xyz from Financial Path. says:

    Thanks for sharing, I know how awkward it can be to post your personal finances online but thanks.

  4. Thank you for sharing! As a new blogger, it’s good to know that it can be done with hard work, time and persistence!

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