Make Money while Blogging

file0001174273310.jpgI get asked a lot how do you make money blogging. I was talking to a couple influencers at Influential Summit last weekend, and I decided that it was time to sit down and make a list to share.

There are several ways that it can be done. Here are just a few ways that I make money blogging.

I don’t make a ton of money blogging, but it’s enough to pay for any promotions or contests I run, buy crafts supplies for the Craft Mondays I host, and occasionally a trip to Starbucks for coffee and a breakfast sandwich. I don’t blog to make tons of money, I blog to share my journey through parenthood and my frugal skills with others. That being said, it is nice to make a little extra money sometimes.

Most of these links are referral links, so I will either receive a bounty/commission if you sign up through my links.

Affiliate Networks:

Escalate Network– My least favorite affiliate network, they have campaigns (usually pay per click/sign up) that change frequently and printable coupons. Minimum pay out $25.

ShopHer– Formerly MySavings. They have campaigns (pay per click, sign up) that change frequently, in addition to printable coupons and free sample offers.  Sometimes they have sponsored posts available too. Minimum pay out $50.

Shareasale– They partner with hundreds (maybe thousands) of companies and brands. Search for a company, apply, and once approved, start posting their deals and you’ll earn a percentage of what you sell.  I post deals from Mabel’s Labels, Craftsy, and Cents of Style. Minimum pay out $50.

Massive Sway- A completely different type of network. Massive Sway works with brands and PR companies to bring you campaigns to share on your blog and across social media platforms. Each campaign has it’s own set of posting rules and pay out amount. You apply for campaigns that interest you. I am unsure of any minimum payout.

Many companies have their own Affiliate or Tell-a-Friend Programs. If there is a website that you want to recommend, check out their site and see if there is a “Refer a Friend” page. Schoola has one that I like. When friends click on my link and sign up, they get a free $10 to spend, and once they place an order, I get $5 or $10 to spend too. It’s a win-win deal! All kinds of website have referral pages. I love that Zaycon Fresh (a company that sells farm fresh meat in bulk) offers $5 for new referrals and you earn $1 every time your friend orders!!)

There are tons of Affiliate programs and Refer-aFriend programs. Just check your favorite websites and shopping portals.


Amazon– When you are writing about products that you use or like, you can link to the items on Amazon and when people click the link and buy the item, you receive a commission. Sometimes there are also bonus programs where you will receive a flat “bounty” (aka commission) if someone signs up for Prime- It’s usually $5.00

Social Platforms- If you area blogger or influencer, make sure that your social media platform profiles reflect that. Here is a screenshot of my Instagram Profile:

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Remember that these social media platforms are a representation of who you are, so if you’ve embarrassing or unflattering photos, you might want to hide them! Brands will research you.

If you aren’t a blogger or influencer, there are still ways to make a little extra money. I wrote about my side hustles here and here.



Why I Love…. My Smartphone

purple crocus

I am not what is referred to as an early adopter of technology. I held onto my flip phone until about 2 1/2 years ago. Seriously. My Flip Phone didn’t even have a camera.

Now that I have  smartphone, I don’t know what the hell was wrong with me. My phone does everything! My purse is a lot lighter now that I no longer carry a planner, memo pad, and a few dozen pens with me. I also carry a lot fewer coupons too.

That is mostly because of all of the amazing apps out there. Check it out:

This is just the first page of the Money Saving screens. I have one other that’s mostly grocery store apps (Ralphs, Food4Less,), and also apps like Shopkick.

What I love is that a lot of these apps can be used together, and with paper coupons in some cases.

I recently posted about Dosh. I love that I was able to take advantage of a 10% cash back offer from Denny’s through Dosh, after I had used a $5 off coupon in the restaurant. Then I uploaded the receipt to Receipt Hog to earn points (that I redeem for cash sent to my paypal account), and there was a Cash Dash offer of 2% back.

My full list of Smartphone apps can be found here. 

In addition I use my talk to text multiple times a day. I also have “Hey Siri” enabled, so she can send texts, take notes (frequently ideas for posts or articles), and answer stupid questions while my hands are occupied. I do a lot of work while I’m driving. Siri is like the secretary I’ve always wanted.

I’d like to think that I am more productive with my phone- and my hands free phone holder.


Earn Cash back with Dosh!

Screen Shot 2018-01-17 at 1.42.28 PM.pngI love a good cash back app.  Dosh is the latest, and it’s a little different than the others out there right now. Dosh is primarily for restaurants (including Denny’s, which is the kid’s favorite), but there are retailers like Hallmark, Forever 21, Cost Plus World Market, and Sam’s Club.

Signing up is easy, and there are no receipts to scan, or photos to take.  Sign up here, then link your credit and debit cards.  Once you use one of the cards at a participating retailer, you’ll get a push notification from Dosh, and in just a few days, you’ll have cash back!  The Cash Out threshold is $15.00 which is pretty easy to get.

Right now when you sign up and link at least two cards, you’ll get a $10 bonus!  Refer friends and receive $5 per referral that signs up and receives their first cash back!

Thanks to my kids and their love of Denny’s, plus all of the other great extra ways to earn money with the app, I’ve already cashed out $20!

Here is my pro-saving tip for the day: Double or triple dip on this by using coupons (There were Denny’s coupons in the mail recently, and many of the retailers that participate also have coupons out there) to lower your Out of Pocket (OOP), and then scan your receipt into Receipt Hog, and check apps like Cash Dash to see if there are any cash back opportunities. And if you shop at Sam’s Club, check out Ibotta, Fetch Rewards, and Checkout51 for more rebate/cash back opportunities! You’ll be earning in NO TIME!!

(The Dosh Link is my personal link, if you sign up and complete an offer, I may earn $5. This money helps me run the site and offer contests and giveaways. You can see my Disclosure  info here.)

My Favorite Side Hustle: Field Agent!

IMG_5660Last summer, I wrote about all of my side hustles. You can read the article here.

Well I got another one to share! I’ve actually had this one for quite a while (about a year and a half), but I’ve always been hesitant to share it. Recently, I have been approached by more than a few people who are looking for ways to make money, and I decided that I was finally going to let the cat out of the bag and share perhaps, my favorite side hustle of all.

Field Agent is an app you can download for your smart phone. It’s different from secret shopping apps and websites, in that you are only shown assignments in your area, that you qualify for. All of the assignments are self assigned, which means that if you want to job you can apply for it you don’t have to email and hope they pick you- which is my big gripe with most secret shopping/audit companies.

Different types of jobs that are available on the Field Agent App

The other thing that makes Field Agent different is that when you select the job, you have a specific time allotted for you to complete the task after you apply and are approved. The time varies based on what type of job it is, but it’s usually 2 to 4 hours from the time you choose the job and you are approved.


Jobs can be  as simple as a photographing an end cap at a store, or can be as difficult as photographing the exterior of the home to help out an insurance company.

The key to doing these jobs well, is to be discreet. You’re not gonna walk into a store and loudly announced you’re here to do an audit, or that you’re here to do a secret shopper. All jobs can be completed with the use of a smart phone, as you will do the job while you are in the store in the app, and photograph using the app as well.

All jobs can be completed with the use of a smart phone, as you will do the job while you are in the store in the app, and photograph using the app as well.

I tend to do assignments when my big guy is at school, and it’s just me and the little one, although if there are higher paying gigs on weekends, I will gladly take both kids if it is a simple task.

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I haven’t made very much this year, but now that school is back in session, It’s time to earn some money!

I’ve taken a lot of time away this year and have not been using the app to earn money as often as I should. But now that my big guy is back in school, I have been doing assignments like mad. I have earned about $40 in the past week and a half. And that’s just one to two hours a week.

They pay either through EFT to your bank account, or through Dwolla,  which is the website similar to Venmo or PayPal. I elect to do payments via EFT. It takes only a few days for the money to be transferred into my bank account, and then I can spend (or save) it how I please.

If you think Field Agent is something you’d like, you can check out their website here, and download the app from wherever you get apps!


Score a FREE ecobee4 Wifi Thermostat!

So, ya’ll know my love of Ohm Connect! It’s an awesome way for Southern CA residents to earn money while conserving power! I wrote about it here, with all the deets.

Right now through Labor Day, when you refer 4 friends that reach silver status (it’s super easy) you will receive a free ecobee4 wifi thermostat! The ecobee4 is the new hottest thermostat on the market (no pun intended). With built-in Amazon Alexa Voice Service and a remote sensor to manage hot and cold spots, CNET is calling ecobee4 the new smart thermostat to beat!

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If you haven’t signed up for Ohm Connect yet, you can do so here.  We’ve been members since 2005, and we’ve earned over $300 cash back via paypal, plus, we’ve saved a bunch of money on our utility bill!  The Ohm Connect alerts (via text) about when to conserve power are a big help!

Ohm Connect is available to those with an electric utility account with Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison or San Diego Gas & Electric.

Save for the Holidays (and Beyond!)- My top tips!

file0001508044668Christmas is 64 days away, and while some of us have been saving our pennies and dollars, some of us haven’t. This article is for those of you who are looking to earn some extra money. For the holidays, or heck, even beyond that!

Now these are all methods that I have used, and continue to use, so there is no baloney coming from me.

  • I do Surveys. Here is a post with links to my top survey companies, including how much each one has earned me!
  • One of my favorite survey companies is Paid View Point.  Surveys are short (less than 5 minutes).  Earn cash with each Survey.  You get $1.00 when you sign up! The pay out is $15.00, and it takes about a month-6 weeks to earn $15.00. So far in 2015, I’ve earned about $78.00.
  • I send my junk mail to Small Business Knowledge Center. Here is a post about it with details. I just got another $20 GC from them earlier this month!
  • I take our bottles and cans to the recycling center. It’s not a ton of money, but I paid the deposit on those bottles, I want it back! I take Lil’ Man with me and we get about $4-$5/month between the milk jugs and misc. bottles and cans. We don’t drink a lot of soda or juice. My parents save their recyclables for us too!
  • I do simple tasks with Field Agent. Field Agent is an app for smartphones that allows you to do simple tasks like photographing displays in stores or scanning items in stores. They even have secret shopping tasks.  Tasks vary in pay, however most pay between $3-$10. I’ve been using Field Agent for 2 months and I’ve earned over $100. Payment is done via Paypal!
  • I also do simple tasks with Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. I transfer the earnings to my account. You sign up and do tasks for small amounts of money, but the money adds up fast.  The tasks are quick and simple (transcription, surveys, flagging inappropriate photos).  I’ve earned over $50 since February.  If you want cold hard cash instead of credit there is an option to have money transferred to a bank account.  Mechanical Turk does ask for your SSN when you sign up- you will receive a 1099- MISC at the end of the year., regardless of which option you select.
  • Earn Gift cards with Mypoints. I take surveys, click links in emails, and do all of my online shopping through Mypoints. So far in 2015, I’ve earned about $45.00.
  • I also use Swagbucks. I use their search engine toolbar, take a daily poll, watch a video and click a few links each day! So far in 2015, I’ve earned about $60.00. Swagbucks has tons of rewards, you can receive cash via paypal too!
  • I use my smartphone to save money too. There are tons of apps that have help you save money in the store (coupons), and get your money back afterwards (rebates). Here is a list of my favs. I’m loving Ibotta right now- I’ve saved over $100 this year alone, just buying my normal groceries!

All of these things are easy to do, realistic, and even a busy person can take 10 minutes out of their day to do one of the things I’ve listed.

Make Money doing Surveys!

I love to earn money, I mean who doesn’t?

Taking surveys online is a quick, easy way to make some money in your spare time.  I do surveys when I’ve got downtime (nap time, waiting for school pick up, on nights when Hubs has dinner meetings with clients or is out of town, etc.)  I don’t watch a lot of TV, so surveys are a good way to pass the time and make a little scratch. I work on surveys about 15-20 minutes each day, usually in the morning while Birdy is still asleep and Lil’ Man is watching Sesame Street and enjoying a warm cup of milk.

Here are a few of the survey panels that I am crazy about. I also included how much I’ve earned doing surveys from each one this year.
Valued Opinions sends my emails about twice a week to do quick surveys that take 10 minutes or less. : $25 so far in 2015
 is a group of consumers from throughout the United States who influence future products and services by volunteering to participate in consumer research. By sharing your opinions about products and services, you are rewarded with Reward Points to redeem for cash and merchandise. $30 so far in 2015


Opinion Outpost conducts surveys because businesses, governments, public bodies, and similar organizations are interested in the views and attitudes of the people who use their products and services. Take Surveys to give your opinion and shape the future.

Rewards include get cash, Amazon gift cards, game points, donations to your favorite charities, and more. Everyone is also automatically entered to a $10,000 sweepstakes by joining and taking surveys. The minimum cash out for Paypal is $10 and only $5 for Amazon gift cards. $60 so far in 2015.

Earn Cash with Paid View Point. Surveys are short (less than 5 minutes).  Earn cash with each Survey.   You get $1.00 when you sign up! The pay out is $15.00, and it takes about a month to earn $15.00. So far in 2015, I’ve earned about $75.00.

Earn Gift cards with Mypoints. I take surveys, click links in emails, and do all of my online shopping through Mypoints. So far in 2015, I’ve earned about $45.00.

I love to do surveys with Pinecone Research. They aren’t always looking for new participants, but check out their website and see if you fit their open demographics. I make about $20/Month doing short surveys (10 minutes or less).

With all of these survey companies, these are surveys I am pre-qualified for. No spending 10-30 minutes only to learn that you aren’t getting paid and they don’t want your opinions (that’s the #1 reason I do not do Swagbucks surveys and I don’t recommend you waste your time doing them either). All of these companies will email you when they have surveys for you to do. Take surveys, and collect points towards rewards (like Paypal payouts or gift cards).

Which survey companies do you use and like?