Do you ever wonder how to make money online?

I get a lot of e-mails from readers asking me how to start a blog because they’d love to be able to review products and learn how to make money online just staying home with their kids. I usually reply kindly and give them a few tips on how to get started, sometimes I’ll hear back again, mostly I won’t.

When I initially started blogging four years ago, my blog started as a place to share giveaways from other blogs. Then we decided to homeschool and I decided to write about that journey. Of course since I already had the platform, why not share about our travel adventures and the food I make as well?!

After years of hard work and a lot of time put into social media and connecting with other bloggers, opportunities to review products with media samples started trickling in. As I proved a reliable, hard and honest worker to public relations firms and brands, I was invited to take part in brand trips and earn some gift cards and cash.

Do I recommend blogging as a way for an at-home mom to earn some money or gift cards? Absolutely! Will you get rich off it? Not likely. If you expect to start blogging and make an income off of it within the first year…you’ll probably be disappointed. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try!

As more and more moms enter the blogging arena, the more you have to ‘stand’ out to PR firms and brands. Whether that’s by excellent content, great photos, tasty recipes, crafts, humor, honesty, quality, dependability or something else, blog about what you like and keep at it.

Believe me, there are days when I was ready to throw in the towel, but blogging for me began as a way to share with others the things that I love. That’s what I clung to; when I had writer’s block, got discouraged because I only got 100 visitors a day to my blog, or felt like I was ‘less’ of a blogger than someone else. And then I’d get an e-mail from a reader letting me know that they bought something I blogged about and they really liked it too, or thanked me for a travel tip I wrote, reps from brands would thank me for my hard work and friends I have met only online would bolster me with encouragement. Then I’d remember THAT was why I started blogging, to share, to help and to belong to a community that was more diverse than I could imagine.

Sure the stuff that comes along with blogging is a definite perk, it’s a fun hobby with benefits that I’ve really come to appreciate, but when it’s all said and done…it’s just something I love to do.

Want more ideas?  Check out The Penny Hoarder’s article on the 12 best ways to make extra money this year.