You know you need to spend money to run a business, but you also don’t want to waste your hard-earned dollars. Especially when you are starting out and don’t have a lot of capital, there are lots of easy ways to save money as a blogger.
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Reasons to start a blog
First off, figure out why you want to blog in the first place. Here are some motivating factors:
- document your journey through some kind of change
- share your knowledge/expertise in a specific subject
- help/inspire/teach other people
- build an online presence, both with an audience and relationships with other bloggers
- have an outlet or meaningful focus for your energy
- earn an income
If your blog is for purely personal purposes, then you can set one up for free on platforms like WordPress. com or Blogspot.
If you intend to start a blog to make money, then I recommend you go self-hosted. Head to my tutorial to set up your blog.
Ways to Save Money on Blogging Costs
There are other costs associated with blogging that will add up. Here are ways to cut down your expenses and make the dollars you spend worth it.
1. Go with longer-term subscriptions to get cheaper monthly rates
For costs that you know you will have to incur anyway, go with the longest-term subscription to get a cheaper rate. For most of these types of plans, you invest the money upfront, but if decide that it is not right for you, then you can get a prorated refund. So if you have the funds to invest from the beginning, you really have nothing to lose.
Why this helps your business: Sure, you might not want to put the money upfront if you’re not sure how long you plan to use the service for. But it’s a good idea to do it because not only are you saving on the cost per month, it also gives you a psychological boost that you are in it for the long haul and will more likely see it through to success.
Examples of plans that you want to lock in for their longest subscriptions:
- Web hosting (get even more bang for your buck with my little trick to save $150+
- Pinterest scheduler like Tailwind (get a $15 credit when you sign up through this link, which is equal to one month on a monthly plan or 1.5 months for an annual plan)
2. Use free alternatives
Free doesn’t mean lesser quality. You can often work with free alternatives forever or a long enough time until you reach a point where you need to upgrade (in which case you are successful enough to be needing to pay for the services).
Why this helps your business: Most times, these free services are easy to use, and even if you need to invest a little time to learn workarounds with a free service, it won’t be so hard on your wallet.
Canva – Easy-to-use photo editor software to create stunning graphics. There is an option to upgrade for access to more features, though I’ve only stuck with the free plan.
Ivory Mix Stock Photos – Library of a chockful of feminine stock photos. Kayla is very generous with the amount of photos stocked in her library, and keeps giving more out each month! You can also upgrade to a monthly subscription to gain full access to tons more of photos.
Buffer / Hootsuite – Most tools to manage your social media posts offer a certain limit of prescheduled posts before you need to upgrade. Using a combination of multiple can keep management costs at $0 early on in your blogging career.
3. Take advantage of free trials
There are 7-day to month-long free trials for a bunch of different tools that you can use to make your blogging life easier.
Why this helps your business: Free trials are a great way to test out products and services before you commit your hard-earned dollars to them. You always have the option to stop after the free trial so you really have nothing to lose by using these free trials.
Pro tip: Don’t just sign up and leave the account to the wayside while your free trial is ticking away. Take the time to get used to the dashboard and settings to maximize your free trial period.
- Automation tools for Pinterest, the #1 traffic source for millions of bloggers:
- MailerLite – Email service provider to handle your subscription lists, email campaigns, and other automated emails. Access to full services for free up to 1,000 subscribers. Even after you hit 1,000, the rates start at $10/month and are very affordable compared to other email service providers. Get a $20 credit to use when you do need to start paying for a subscription.
4. Invest in courses or tools that get you a return
I do believe that you need to invest some money in your education. Sure, you can try to learn things on your own for free, but a lot of the information is fragmented and you don’t get a clear picture or path to where you should head. Find courses of value that will help you move forward.
Why this helps your business: You've probably heard "You gotta spend money to make money." Well, that's only true is you invest in things that will move your business forward.
This is NOT the same as chasing the newest shiny object that every blogger seems to be promoting. Whichever products you do choose to invest in, please make sure you put effort into using it.
I have taken over 50 paid blogging ebooks and courses. If you read my posts, you'll see three that I consistently promote because I've gotten the best return on them:
- This affiliate marketing course, which resulted in the first $100 I made blogging
- This blogging community that has allowed me to consistently earn a 4-figure income from my 5th month blogging on
- This Pinterest ebook that has skyrocketed my traffic and made me a power pinner (check out my Pinterest reach if you don't believe me)
5. Wait for sales
Bloggers who have created their own products follow similar marketing tactics just like any other retailer. Wait for special occasions for the best deals so you don't have to pay full price, especially for some of the more expensive blogging courses.
Black Friday is one time of the year that comes to mind with sales everywhere in the blogging community.
6. Find alternatives to help you make capital
Make or save money doing things that you already do so that you can use it to invest towards your blog. Here are the best side hustles for busy people and make money online in these ways to get the capital I need to start my blog. A few of my easy favorites to save up money to spend on blogging expenses:
Bonus tip! Actually stick to it
The biggest way you can let your money go to waste is to sit on your blogging. You can’t just invest the money into it and expect to get a return. You also need to put in the time and effort to make something out of it.
Give yourself at least one year (and make sure it’s a decent effort), and you’d be surprised at how far you can come along if you really set your mind to it.
These are the best ways to save money with your blog and make the most of your financial investment in this endeavor.