14 Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget (When Starting a Blog)
Mama, are you thinking about starting a blog, but just can’t do it because of the cost?
The other day on Instagram, a follower asked me how much does it cost to blog?
I thought that was an interesting question because it made it sound like this follower is feeling that blogging is expensive.
The real answer is no, it’s not!
While it’s true that in the “business world” many startups have to raise capital and spend a lot of money to get their business up and running, it’s not the same when you start a blog as a mom.
The real beauty of starting a blog in this day and age is that you can start one for next to nothing!
How awesome is that!
Starting a blog can be one of the cheapest online businesses to start that can generate the highest ROI (return on investment) for your efforts.
There is a huge potential to make a lot of money when it comes to blogging (after doing this since 2014 I’m a six figure blogger).
However, blogging is not without a lot of hard work and trial and error to get things right.
If you are a frugal fanatic and spending money on anything makes you cringe, then putting money into a blog that doesn’t immediately pay you back can be troublesome.
That is why I have come up with several ways to save money on a tight budget when starting your budding new blogging business.
Let’s go into how a mom blogger can make money blogging and then my saving money tips for blogging!
Bloggers Can Make A Lot Of Money
One of the great things about blogging is that you ultimately have control over how much you want to make.
Blogging income can be made up of several different income streams, here are a few of the main ones:
- Affiliate income
- Display ads
- Launching your own product
- Sponsored content
The actual process of starting a blog is not that difficult, even if you’re not very “techie.”
Believe me, if I can do it (with two left hands here!) then you can start a blog (make sure to check my video tutorial too!).
If you need some inspiration as to how much bloggers can make, then just search for “blog income reports” on Pinterest. It’s simply astounding.
However, one can easily get carried away spending unnecessary money when starting a blog.
- Custom theme
- Branding kits
- Logo design
Seriously, it CAN get expensive, but it doesn’t have to, mama. When I started, I started on a budget and used a lot of free tools and serivces and guess what? I still do!
The only thing you truly need to pay for when starting your blog is hosting and a domain (unless you can score a free one-more in that in a bit), which is very affordable!
Other than that, you can bootstrap absolutely EVERYTHING!
YouTube tutorials and other bloggers will be your lifeline to figuring out this whole blogging thing. While you can certainly invest in learning by taking courses, which I do recommend, don’t go overboard.
Find the course for the thing you need to accomplish and start there. Don’t blow your budget on a bunch of different courses at once.
Nothing is Guaranteed
The thing about blogging that often turns people away is that the income is not guaranteed.
Unlike your 9-5, you are not clocking in and clocking out with a consistent paycheck every week or two.
Blogging takes time to build up. Even when you do start to make money, it can be one to three months before you actually get paid, depending on the ad or affiliate network. And, income fluctuates over seasons, months or years.
So, in the meantime, that means that you should cut costs elsewhere in order to save some money when just starting out with your blog.
Ways To Save Money When Starting A Blog
There are several ways to save money on a tight budget when starting a blog.
1. Pay Subscriptions Annually
While it is going to cost you a little more upfront, it will save you money in the long run. Paying annually for things, like hosting, can be a HUGE savings in the long run. Many softwares and other subscription services offer annual payments at a savings to monthly payments.
You can also check out AppSumo for some pretty sweet lifetime deals on things.
2. Get a Free Domain
Remember that domain I talked about earlier…
Your domain is like your website’s home address. It will be your brand and your url.
While a domain is generally pretty inexpensive (about $15 for a year) hosting companies often offer free domains when you also purchase hosting through them.
Bluehost, for example, is a hosting company that provides you with a free domain when you purchase hosting through them.
3. Use Freemium Versions of Tools and Apps
Many tools, services and apps have a freemium version. For example, Elementor is a page builder but they offer a free version. Usually, the only things you don’t get with the free version are certain features, shortcuts or steps.
Here is a short list of freemium WordPress plugins:
4. Save Up for Sales
There are a few times per year when just about every business owner runs huge sales on their products.
The most common include Black Friday, Cyber Monday, 4th of July, and their birthdays or anniversaries.
I recently did a deal this summer to celebrate my birthday!
If there is a pricer course/software or other blogging asset that you are just dying to buy, then try and hold out until one of these dates.
Trust me, it can save you a TON of money!
5. Watch for Bundles!
If you haven’t already heard of bundles, then you are in for a surprise. Once you start signing up for other blogger’s email lists, you will quickly start to see the bundles that they promote.
For example, the Genius Blogger’s Toolkit from Ultimate Bundles sells for $97 and has over $6,000 worth of courses and content!
Talk about savings!
6. Use Referral Codes
Affiliate marketing is one of the easiest ways for new bloggers to make money.
You don’t need a ton of traffic to start generating an income from affiliate sales.
Think about the different things that you use in your daily life and things you use for your blog.
If you’re a finance blogger and you use Acorns, then blog about that and use your referral code.
Just about every company and app has a “refer a friend” program or affiliate program that you can tap into. For blogging that’s Tailwind!
Look for things that fit into your niche and that your audience would also use rather than just going after things that pay the most.
It’s all about serving your audience first!
7. Share Your Blog
Did you know that there are many blogs owned by more than one person? Take Six Sister’s Stuff. Don’t you just LOVE their Youtube channel? I can’t get enough mama!
Here are six wonderful sisters sharing one blog and one channel. They can split the expenses to hire a photographer or the ingredients for their recipes and such.
If you want to start a blog but unsure about the cost if you can really dedicate the time it will take to get your blog off and running, consider starting one with a family member!
8. Bootstrap Where You Can
As I mentioned before, there are a lot of things that you can purchase that can really start to add up.
However, there are also freemium versions and free trials of things that can save you a lot of money.
Take email autoresponders for example…
Finding an autoresponder service to collect and send emails (which I HIGHLY suggest you do from the very beginning) can get pricey. But services like MailChimp offer a free version for up to a certain number of subscribers.
While it can be kind of a pain, you can always switch services or upgrade later on when you start to make more money.
This includes your tech supplies!
You don’t need the latest laptop or best cell phone to get started.
Work with what you have or find a cheap/second hand alternative.
Now that we have covered ways that you can save money when it comes to the process of blogging, what about other ways to save money on a tight budget before you start to bring money in?
Ways To Save Money At Home
Whenever you decide to start your blog, whether you are already a stay at home mom or about to go on maternity leave, there are many ways that you can save some extra cash.
Even though I make six figures blogging, we still budget and save when we can. As I mentioned, blogging income can fluctuate, so you don’t want to spend a lot if you find out that the following month your income isn’t as high as it was last month.
9. Make a Budget
Whether or not you are starting a business, you should have a budget. This will allow you to see where your money is going and how you can use it better. Budgets also help you to reach a goal, to pay down debts for example.
Make sure that you are budgeting for your priorities before anything else.
10. Cook and Eat at Home
It’s way too easy when you are staying home and have zero motivation to cook to just order in. The big problem with this? It’s way too expensive and adds up super quickly!
When you can plan ahead and meal prep, you’ll save money. I’ve been heavily researching freezer meals mama! I’m getting ready for back to school big time with some freezer meal ideas!
11. Buy Used
There is no shame in getting things second hand. From appliances to kids clothes, there is a huge savings to be had when you are shopping for things secondhand. Most of our devices like iPads and Mac computers are second hand. They work great and if my son or daughter breaks their pad, it’s not that much of a loss.
Now I am no crazy coupon lady, but I do what I can. This can include getting a store debit card to save a certain percentage to flipping through your weekly circular when you are meal planning.
Before you make a purchase, you should be asking yourself two things…
- Do I really need this item?
- Is there a way that I can save money on it?
I have to say this all the time mama! Impulse buying is something I do and maybe you do to, but I have to ask – Do I really need this course? Will I grow my business with this course? How can I save on this course?
13. Cash, Cash, Cash
Did you know that on average we spend less when we are using cash to pay for something?
I think it has something to do with physically holding the money and seeing how much it actually is as opposed to swiping a card.
Nonetheless, you should budget and use cash whenever possible to avoid overspending and impulse buying (two major money sucks!)
14. Make Some Extra Cash
I’m going to reveal a cool secret to you about how you can make some extra cash while you are building your blog…
You can use the skills to learn creating your blog to make money!
Do you love making pins? Turn to Facebook and find VA groups and advertise your services for making pins for people.
You can do this for writing, web design, creating videos, just about anything you learn when creating your own blog other bloggers are more than willing to outsource these tasks to you for quick cash.
For more service ideas, check out my post on side business ideas you can start doing as a stay at home mom!
You Can Save Money While Blogging
When you are starting a blog you need to be frugal in the beginning.
I realize that it takes money to make money, but you don’t need to go blowing your entire savings just to get your blog off the ground.
Invest in courses, tools, services that you KNOW will help you in the long run.
Be frugal, be smart, and become a blogging boss!
Over to you – what ways do you save money while you continue blogging? Share with me in the comments below!
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