Blogging on a budget, is that possible? From an outside perspective, blogging can seem super glamorous and super…. expensive. Scrolling through Instagram, you’ll come across tons of bloggers, with both big and small followings, all carrying the newest designer bags, wearing the infamous $800 Stuart Weitzman boots, on a European vacation. I mean, it’s no secret that mega-bloggers make tons of money, but getting to that point seems to require spending a lot. Despite what it may look like, you don’t have to be a millionaire to become a blogger. There are tons of little tips and tricks to navigating the industry without breaking the bank to do so.
It’s important to note, however, that there are some overhead costs of becoming a blogger that you will incur on a regular basis. For example, having a physical website for your blog requires purchasing a domain name and hosting your site on a server, like GoDaddy or Squarespace. That, obviously, isn’t free of charge, and is typically invoiced monthly and billed on an annual basis. For a starter package, this shouldn’t run you more than $150 a year ($12.50/month). Think of starting up a blog just as you would with starting up a business. There’s definitely some spending that will occur to get you going, and after that, you gradually begin generating a profit and can pay back those start up costs.
Try not to get overwhelmed if you’re new to blogging, because blogging on a budget is indeed possible. If you’re trying to start a blog and everything we just mentioned above went over your head, be on the lookout for our upcoming post on how to start a blog!
Below, we’re sharing our best tips for blogging on a budget and sharing the things that have worked for us on a personal basis.
Blogging On A Budget
1. Team Up With Other Creatives
While it’s super nice to have a professional photographer at your disposal to photograph your looks/collaborations/products, it’s not always affordable especially when you’re blogging on a budget. Luckily, there are a lot of other options. A great way to save money is to reach out to other bloggers or creatives in your area to collaborate. Because other emerging photographers and bloggers also need photos, most are happy to meet up and work together in a way that’s mutually beneficial (and free). Collaborating with other creatives in your area is also a good way to grow. If you tag each other in the posts, it helps both of you to gain exposure to each other’s followers.
Never be afraid to reach out to people. We’ve done it, ourselves. Some people will answer you, and some won’t, but don’t get discouraged. Start off by reaching out to people in your peer groups in terms of blogging category and follower count. It wouldn’t make much sense as a beauty blogger with 10k followers to reach out to a pet blogger with 100k for a collaboration that’s supposed to be mutually beneficial, right? You can use your common sense when it comes to selecting who to reach out to. Make no mistake, you can definitely be ambitious and try to reach out to those with a much larger following, but don’t expect too much from them in the way of a collaboration. Start with people in your same follower bracket and go from there!
2. Rent The Runway Unlimited
Okay, right off the bat, this might not seem like the most affordable option, but I promise you, it’s worth it in the long run. If you’re unfamiliar with Rent The Runway, it’s a designer clothing rental service. They offer next day shipping in major cities, like New York, and even have some brick and mortar locations if you feel like picking things out in person. Rent The Runway just recently started this new service called “Unlimited,” which is just that. For $159 per month, you get endless rentals of high-end designer pieces. They put a limit on how many pieces you can rent at one time, but you can swap out pieces however many times you want. Sometimes Rent The Runway even runs specials where they offer exclusive pricing. For example, right now they’re running a Fall Exclusive where the membership is only $99 per month.
I’m sure a ton of you are reading this, gasping at spending $159 per month on a clothing membership, but if you think about it from a big-picture perspective, it’s really not bad. You get endless access to designer clothing, that individually cost more than the entire month of membership. It’s a great way to be able to generate new outfits and new photos, without having to pay for every look individually and without having to find space in your closet for things you might only wear once. Oh, and, side note: you can cancel your membership at any time without any cancellation fees. Rent the Runway is no doubt a great resources for blogging on a budget!
3. Buy Refurbished Equipment
Honestly, being a blogger requires a lot of different equipment. You need vlogging cameras and photo cameras, a good lens or a newer iPhone for quality, you need specific lighting for tutorial videos, the list goes on and on. All of those things aren’t exactly affordable so obviously by now you’re wondering if blogging on a budget really is possible. Almost all major camera brands sell professionally refurbished equipment at discounted prices. Brands like Canon put their refurbished items through thorough testing to ensure that its fully functioning before selling it to their customers. We’ve had personal experience with buying refurbished camera bodies and lenses and haven’t had a problem yet.
As a side note, when buying refurbished, make sure you’re buying from brand-approved placed. For example, popular camera and technology outlet, B&H Photo, is a Canon-approved retailer of refurbished items, meaning that you can trust that the items we’re properly fixed and in perfect condition, even though you’re not buying it directly from Canon.
4. Rent The Bags
Similar to Rent The Runway, sites like “Bag, Borrow or Steal” let you rent high-end designer bags for an affordable price, another way to make blogging on a budget easy. The selection offered on their site is a bit higher-end than what you’ll find on Rent The Runway. Whereas Rent The Runway will let you rent bags from brands like All Saints and Furla, Bag Borrow or Steal will let you rent from designers like Chanel and Louis Vuitton on a monthly basis. Just to give you a little example, you can rent one of Fendi’s newest bags that normally retails for $1970 for just $200. At that fraction of the price, it’s yours for an entire month. The great thing about having a designer bag for a full month is that it can be used in tons of photos, styled however many ways you can possibly think of.
It’s important to remember that the brands you’re wearing in your photos set the tone for who you are as a blogger. If you’re going for a higher-end look and feel, then featuring higher end items in your photos is key. Even if you can’t immediately afford a $3,000 Chanel bag, you can rent one and still create the same perception.
5. Utilize Services Like AfterPay
Tons of online retailers, especially the more expensive ones, now offer services like AfterPay, that functions much like paying off a credit card bill. For example, e-commerce favorite, Revolve, just introduce AfterPay to it’s site. It allows you to buy a more expensive jacket, and pay it off in 4 equal instalments so that the purchase is more manageable.
The big benefit of AfterPay is that, unlike credit cards, there’s no interest on paying off the purchase. This is really helpful for those of us blogging on a budget! With credit cards, all of that money you’re paying back has interest tacked onto it, meaning that you’ll end up paying back the credit card company more money than the cost of the purchase. Luckily, AfterPay eliminates that extra spending you encounter with credit cards.
AfterPay is super popular with overseas retailers, but has quickly gained popularity in the US. You’ll find this service available in retailers like Revolve and Calvin Klein, Boohoo and Anthropologie.
There are so many great tricks that you can utilize whether you’re just starting a blog, or trying to get into blogging on a budget to make it easy and affordable!