How I Became a Full Time Blogger

How I became a full time blogger

Do you love reading about other people’s journeys and success stories online? I know I do! Here is how I became a full time blogger online. First some quick definitions. I use the word full time to indicate that this is my only job now. Thankfully, it does NOT require 40 hours a week. The other clarification is the term blogger. In reality, I am a blogging author – a blauthor! Blogging helps drive traffic to my website where I sell digital products that I authored.

The Start of Something Big

Back in 2007 (the dark ages of the Internet), I was desperately looking for a way to make some extra money online. I am a registered Physical Therapist and had left working due to previous medical issues and stayed home to raise our children for awhile. At the time we had 4 young children but was looking to see if I could start an online business.

First, the idea was to create an online marketplace to sell therapy equipment. So I would scour the internet to share products that were for sale. Using eBay as my main source, I stumbled upon the idea of digital products. At that time you could sell digital products on eBay.

My idea lightbulb when crazy and I quickly created a ebook of forms for pediatric therapists. I tossed it up on eBay as an auction – crazy right! Guess what I started the price at $9.95 and in under 6 hours it was bid up to $40! Wow, what an amazing sign that the product was needed.

Bit By the Creator Bug

I began to create more digital books – mostly activity ideas to encourage motor skill development in children. Blogging was not even on my radar. I wrote articles for the website, but they were all posted as individual pages.

With our $500 investment, I was profitable out of the gate! It was an amazing feeling that made me want to create more and more digital books.

Anytime I could write I would. Most of my work was done during a two hour nap time in the middle of the day and after 8:00 pm at night when the kids went to bed. But my brain filled up with ideas all day long. I still have hundreds of note cards and notebooks where I wrote down my ideas to use at a later date.

The Internet Changed and So Did The Websites

The internet started to change. EBay shut down the selling of digital products so I sold the ebooks and shipped them on CD-ROMs. It was labor intensive compared to digital delivery but it was still profitable.

The BEST thing I did was create a monthly newsletter. Visitors to my website could sign up to receive it for free every month (the early days of an opt-in). I would hand write out the email addresses and add them to a list when the email requests came in. The list started to get bigger and bigger. I would paste 50 emails in at a time using blind copy and send out the newsletter.

Then one day, I promoted a digital product in the newsletter and I sold hundreds of dollars in one day! I was jumping up and down to earn probably about $400 that day.

I began to focus on creating digital products but how could I gain more emails? I knew I needed more people to come to the website.

The Birth of the Blog

I had heard of blogging so I thought why not try that too. Using blogspot, I created a blog to write posts and direct people back to my website. I enjoyed writing more often and helping my readers find out about new research and other ideas online related to pediatric therapy.

Seeing how successful the website was I decided to start another website about play time for children and families. This was more of a personal goal of blogging about fun activities for kids. It helped entertain me as a mother to think up ideas for my own children and share them with the world. This website also became profitable although much smaller sales. The digital activity books all focus on pretend play and no prep activities for children. I also started a blogspot blog for that website as well.

I would blog about 2-3 times per week on blogspot, drive traffic back to the website, share on social media, gather email addresses, send emails and make money. Working about 8 hours a week and I my earnings started out at 10K per year going all the way to 100K per year in 2015 when I knew I needed a different system.

It was super effective for a long time but it was getting very hard to manage four places filled with content. I did though for about 9 years like that!

I Forgot To Mention Pinterest

Whoopsie, I forgot to mention how much Pinterest skyrocked my traffic. When Pinterest first started, I got an email from a fellow therapy blogger to give me a heads up that it was working wonders to drive traffic to her website. I jumped on the band wagon and started pinning and adding photos to every blog post I created.

My incoming traffic tripled due to Pinterest. It beat out all Google traffic, Facebook, YouTube, and email traffic by far. It was definitely a tipping point for the website that helped to increase sales tremendously.

Today Pinterest it still the top social platform to drive traffic to my websites. Organic search beats social platforms on one of my three websites which is AWESOME!

Big Changes in 2016

In 2016, I had both the websites moved over to WordPress including the blogspot blogs. It was a GAME CHANGER! First of all I saved myself hours of work because everything was in one place. Second of all, the website looked so much more professional adding to my credibility. Sales has continued to increase every year topping out at 300K last year!

Looking to the Future

The occupation of blogging, content creator, online entrepreneur, blauthor, (whatever you choose to call it) is constantly changing. It is one of the best and hardest things about our job. You can never claim to be bored but keeping up with all the changes can be difficult.

I am constantly dabbling in different ways to increase my traffic and creating new products weekly. Product creation is what I like best but realize I have to get people’s eyes on the products through blogging.

Share your story

I would LOVE to hear your blogging story or blogging dreams. Send me an email at [email protected] and let me know your history and future plans.

Do you want to be a blogger or a blauthor?

Are you super excited about your online business journey? Perhaps you have one idea or many ideas and you are not sure where to start. Or maybe you have been operating an online business for some time but want to increase traffic, conversion rates, and sales.

There is a significant amount of information on the web about how to blog, write ebooks, create content and sell online but after a while you can be completely overwhelmed. In addition, you can get hyperfocused on one area of the business and disregard other areas that can help your business to grow.

The Running a Successful Online Business – 12 Checklists to Help You on the Path to Success provides as an overall, step by step, guide to help you establish your successful online business. Whether a newbie or a seasoned content creator, it is always helpful to review your online focus in all 12 of these areas.

How I became a full time blogger