Everything I Spend For My 7-Figure Blog | Blogging Expenses

August 17, 2023


How to Start a Blog

These are proven blog post titles that will get you traffic to your blog. 

FREE download

Hi, I'm Sophia

I’m the ultimate planner and it’s no secret, when I started my blog I knew I wanted to make money and have endless potential. And you can too... I'm so glad you're here.


How to Make Your Blog Look Professional 

How I Made $30,000 in May 2020




This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you. Please read full disclosure here.

Are blogs free? Does it cost money to start a blog? These are my exact blogging expenses and what I spend money on to run my 7-figure blog!

This is all about every single thing that I spend money on to keep my blog afloat. I’m going over all business expenses since starting a blog over 5 years ago.

If you’re wondering about blog overhead, what it costs to keep a blog, what I spent during my first year blogging versus what I’m spending now, I’m revealing that and so much more!

I wanted to keep it as clear as possible since you really don’t need to have super high blogging expenses in the beginning (but be helpful with what I’m paying for now!), so let’s dive in.

This post is all about blogging expenses.

Understanding the Initial Investment: How Much Does It Cost to Start a Blog on WordPress?

The easiest way to begin is by looking at what I was spending on my blog in my first year. Like, every dollar was extremely thought out and intentional.

I only spent money on these four things starting out —

Hosting: I was doing my hosting through Bluehost and they were definitely the most affordable host when getting started. This is one of the things that I look back on and am SO glad I did it the way I did

Website theme: my first theme was from 17th Avenue designs and I paid extra to have someone install the theme for me

Courses: I am the biggest believer in purchasing courses! Honestly, you can save so much time learning from someone who already has it figured out versus learning it on your own

Stock images: Using stock images is the best way to get quality images on your blog without having to worry about copyright/things like that

So that’s not really a lot! All that probably came to about $500 during that first year of blogging. Which sounds like a lot but if you think about that amount getting a whole business started… it’s really not that much…

Blogging overhead is incredibly low in general, but the blogging expenses in the beginning are microscopic.

Learn My Exact Blogging Strategies That I Used to Start My 7-Figure Blog

Breaking Down the Costs: How Much Does It Cost to Build a Blog Website?

So what does it actually cost? 

WordPress.org is always free. That’s what I recommend using for your blog and then getting a host and theme for it. 

Consider it like buying a house versus renting, if you use a site like Wix or Squarespace, you’re essentially renting the space for your website. But with WordPress.org, you’re buying the house.

Hopefully I didn’t mix metaphors too much there!

So once you have your WordPress.org set up, you’ll need two things: a host and a theme. The hosting company takes responsibility for maintaining the server and WordPress installation, like taking care of backups and updates.

Without web hosting, websites would not be visible online!

The theme is what your website will actually look like, and different themes are customizable in different ways.

If you purchase a hosting plan through Bluehost (which is what I did and recommend for fellow beginners) you can start at $1.99/mo by purchasing an annual subscription. Plus you get a free domain name with Bluehost.

And for a theme, I’d recommend looking on Etsy. You can purchase a beautiful theme like this for $59 from 17th Avenue on Etsy (which is exactly what I did). Having a good theme ensures that your blog will look much more professional.

At this point, we’ve spent less than $100 to start a blog and every other expense is your own choice. 

Like I’ve previously mentioned, I recommend taking courses to learn blogging strategy instead of just hoping to figure it out by yourself. I also recommend using stock photos to ensure that you’re probably crediting the photo source.

Want more helpful tips? Join my blogging newsletter for blogging ideas, motivation, and exclusive deals!

Demystifying Blogging Expenses: What Are the Monthly Costs of Running a Blog Now? 

So full transparency, I wanted to share what I used to spend money on so you know how cheaply you can get started.

My blog expenses changed slightly after the first couple years of blogging as I needed to upgrade my host and email service. Plus I started hiring assistants (and later employees) to help with day-to-day. 

And remember, now we’re expanding our business and going down a lot of different avenues. We’re investing in a house for the interior design business as well as tangible planners — it’s not just blogging expenses anymore!

I’ll try to keep this list mostly around what I’m actually spending blog-expense wise so this doesn’t get too confusing.

Here is everything we’re spending money on…

List of My Blogging Expenses

Salaries and wages: between my salary and the BSL teams wages (there’s 9 of us now), that’s definitely the biggest expense

Email provider: we’re using ActiveCampaign now since our list has grown so large, which is great but also expensive

Shopify store and apps: to sell our products and collect reviews

Hosting: we’ve since moved to a different host solely to handle the amount of traffic we get to the site. TBH you don’t really need to switch hosts until you start getting heavy traffic

ClickUp: the project management system that the team uses. Honestly, we SWEAR by this because it’s so good and keep the team completely organized. I’ve been using ClickUp since about 2017 and haven’t looked back since then

Adobe programs: Illustrator and Photoshop are a big part of our social media and marketing strategy

Canva: we use this to create our printables

Google: we use both Email for all employees and Storage for saving out all our content

Content expenses: any items that I need to create blog posts, social media posts, and miscellaneous objects/projects

SEO tools: for writing blog posts, marketing, projections and research

Teachable: this is what we host our courses on, we have three courses that are all hosted there

Quickbooks: for all our accounting needs

Stock images: while we don’t use this as much as when we began, we do still use stock photos occasionally

Storage unit: a physical location to hold our planners, house decor, any items that can’t be kept in our office

Accountant: all part of having a business!

Lawyer: all part of having a business!

Rent and utilities: the office space that BSL is headquartered out of

Insurance: all part of having a business!

Tangible products: this would be our planners and any items that we sell along side the planners

TaxJar: what we use to ensure that all sales taxes are taken care of properly when a product is purchased

From Blogging Hobby to Business Venture: How to Run a Blog and Make Money

What’s the main difference between having a hobby blog versus a blog that makes money? You might be surprised to know that it’s NOT how much you spend.

It’s your mindset and how you treat your blog.

If you’re not prioritizing your blog posts and marketing/Pinterest strategy then you’re never going to get the page views you need to make millions.

That’s where ROI comes in. Return on Investment is something I thought about a lot in the beginning — it’s basically asking yourself “what can I do to get the biggest reward back for my time spent now”.

When I first started my blog, I knew I needed it to make enough money to pay for college. By knowing my goal, it became easy to know what to spend time on: getting page views so I’d be accepted into an ads/affiliate program.

Getting page views really just amounts to writing quality content and using Pinterest to market that content so that’s what I devoted my time to.

If you don’t have any goals or you don’t really know what you’re working towards, it’s really hard to prioritize blogging in the way that makes it a full time job.

And to help ensure you’re making progress on your blogging goals and not just spinning your wheels, I recommend taking courses!

Courses I Recommend

I took Making Sense of Cents as one of my first courses and it was so helpful explaining how to sell without selling. Literally so helpful for someone like me who has never done it before!

After I started getting really successful with my blog, I actually started to create my own courses teaching my exact strategy (and they’ve gotten so great feedback!).

My courses are:

Perfecting Blogging Starting from the beginning, this course has everything you need to know about laying out your website to writing your first blog post. Plus, my SEO strategy that’s SO good and SO easy to use.

Perfecting Pinterest Let’s get that business account set up and I’ll teach you the secret to incorporating SEO into pins and how I only spend one hour a week on Pinterest, Pinterest drives the most traffic to my site and it can be the top dog for you too!

Perfecting EmailWhether you’re just starting your list or it’s 100,000+ strong (like mine), these are the exact strategies to create printables, opt-ins, sequences, and email automations that attract lifetime subscribers.

Learn My Exact Blogging Strategies That I Used to Start My 7-Figure Blog

Maximizing Earnings: Tips for Making $100 a Month Blogging or Having a Million Dollar Blog


This is the easiest way to start making money and likely takes the least amount of time. This can potentially make you 2-4 figures a month.


Similar to ads, this is an easy passive revenue stream and once you’ve met the requirements to join an affiliate program, it doesn’t take much time. This can potentially make you 2-4 figures a month.


This will require a lot of upfront work to create the course, sales funnels, and marketing. However, once that’s all created you will have a passive income stream that requires minimal work on your end (mostly troubleshooting and updating courses materials as needed). This can potentially make you 3-5 figures a month.


The biggest time investment will be selling products that aren’t evergreen, meaning you will have to constantly work on creating them/updating them/ordering and sending them. However, you will make a much bigger profit than you would selling someone else’s products. This can potentially make you 3-6+ figures a month.

So were these blogging costs helpful?

Whew! That is the full list of all blogging expenses and everything we’re spending money on! Which if nothing else, is an interesting look into how expenses grow as your blog grows.

I’ve always thought it’s incredibly interesting to see what is going on behind the scenes.

I would definitely urge you to be cognizant of what you’re spending money on throughout all stages of your business. You definitely don’t need all these things in the beginning.

Spend the bare minimum to make sure you enjoy blogging first and you can be consistent.

This post was all about blogging expenses.

© Perfecting Blogging 2024


Comments +

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Learn More


Follow Along