How you can save money by making small changes

Today I’m going to show you how you can save money by making small changes, and without even feeling like you’re missing out on anything. If you can make these small changes, you will notice a difference in your bank balance which will help you save even more money for a rainy day. We all love a good bargain or being able to save a bit of money here and there, but let’s face it we probably all indulge way more than we should. Well I definitely do.

Set small savings up.

Let’s start with going through the traditional way to save money by literally putting some money aside. You could choose to do this each day or at the beginning of every week, obviously it all depends on when you get paid.

For example:

If you put £5 away a week, (which let’s be fair won’t get you very far in this day and age) by the end of the year you will have a whopping £260! As we all know the end of the year means Christmas and having that tucked away would certainly help, especially with the cost of Christmas rising as the years go on.

Another way of saving that I personally love, is whenever I buy something from the shops, I put the change away in a jar. So if I spent £9.63 I’d put the 37p into a jar. You’d be surprised on how quickly things like that mount up.

Also if you’re with Lloyds Bank (I’m not sure if other banks offer this service) you can set up a change saver account, which literally does the same thing. On many occasions I’ve logged into my internet banking and £40 has appeared in my change saver. This includes when you have direct debits going out, if it’s not at the exact pound Lloyds will pop the rest into you change saver account. They even send you a cashpoint card for it so that it’s easy to withdraw. A brilliant way to save money without even knowing about it!

save money, saving money, money saving

Changes you can make to your shopping to save money.

We all work hard so I’m not going to bang on about how you should stop buying treats or not get that bottle of vodka, but what you could do instead is buy the cheaper brand. So for example instead of buying a family packet of Doritos, go for the shop’s own. I promise you they taste just as good, and they’ll taste even better knowing that you’ve saved a quid or two.

Collect coupons. I used to shrug them off as I felt a bit insulted by the idea of them, but seriously they are one of the greatest things ever. You can find coupons in magazines, newspapers, online and often in leaflets that are posted through your door.

One other thing that you could do is sign up to your regular supermarket’s scheme. Most places offer some sort of “card” that you can save points on. For years I’ve shopped at Morrisons and always denied getting one of their cards because I didn’t feel like I went there enough to earn anything of value. Then I started using my parents card and I saw all of the coupons and discounts they get given and quickly signed up for one.

What you could do at home to save money.

Lights

Do you really need that hallway light on? Some people do it so that their children can see if they need the toilet or any other of the thousands of things children demand in the night. Instead why not invest in a battery powered lamp that could light the hallway up just enough for the kids to see. Or switch to energy saving bulbs, not just in the hallway but everywhere in the house. You may not feel like there’s a difference but there will be.

Same goes for all electrical appliances, try and make sure you turn them off when you’re not using them. I’m awful for leaving the cooker main switch on and also the showers switch too. Not only will you be able to save money, but you will be environmentally friendly too!

Water

You can also save money on your water bill by taking a shower for only as long as you need to and sacrificing your singing time(!).

Another thing you could do is keep the tap water off whilst brushing your teeth.

You could put the washing machine on a cycle that uses less energy and water. Most modern machines have some sort of energy mode on them, take a look at yours! Also, setting your washing machine up to do a cycle through the night will cost less, as the rates go down through the night.

Heating

Depending on how your home is heated you could save a small fortune by switching to halogen heaters. They are small free standing heaters that you can buy from pretty much any hardware shop for around £10. There are bigger options available but for my flat (which has super high ceilings) all I need is two of these and the place is nice and toasty. They run on pence an hour and plug straight into your mains. They also have a great little feature where if they are knocked over or taken off the base whilst they’re on, they will automatically shut off. So you’ll be fine leaving it on if you’re nipping for a quick wee between your TV shows.

Is there anything else I could be doing?

Of course, here’s a list of ideas you could take on to save money

  1. Don’t bin ripped clothes, use them! This could be as cloths for cleaning or upcycling them into cushion covers, get creative!
  2. Keep all of your machines in and out of the house maintained (Yes I’m on about the car)
  3. Make gifts and cards at home. These are often more sentimental anyway!
  4. Cancel any unused subscriptions you pay for like the gym
  5. Plan your meals for the week and stick to it when you go shopping
  6. Don’t make a large purchase without first really taking time to think about it
  7. Sell your unused belongings, there are so many easy ways of doing it now!
  8. Aim for something that you would really like to buy, it will give you more motivation!
  9. Bargain with your TV and internet providers for a better deal.
  10. Walk to school/work instead of driving or taking the bus wherever possible.
  11. Invite people over rather than going out
  12. Buy from charity shops
  13. Take a packed lunch to work, and do it for the kids too
  14. Quit smoking – great for your health and your purse
  15. Cut the kids hair instead of going to a salon
  16. Cancel magazine subscriptions – do you really look at them anyway?
  17. If possible, take on more hours at work
  18. Enter competitions to win things that will save you money, this could be meals or days out, clothing vouchers, discounts on utility bills. The list goes on.
  19. If you hear of any cash-in-hand work going that you can do, go for it!

There are literally hundreds of ways to make money and save money – so treat your purses to a rest and begin saving!

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How you can give up your 9-5 and become a full-time blogger and bloggers bundle giveaway!

Giveaway details

“Not me!” I hear you say. That’s what I thought less than three months ago when myself and my best bloggy buddy were chatting. Now, as of next Friday, I am going to be working for myself, and I’m going to tell you how you can do it too!

I also have an exciting blogging bundle giveaway to give away to a lucky winner worth £50! It consists of a few essentials (and one or two not so essential but I know you’ll love them). The bundle consists of:

  • A midyear planner for your wall, so that you can have all of your tasks right there in front of your PC.
  • A midyear diary so that when you’re out and about, you can keep an eye on your schedule
  • A cork board for your wall to pin your inspiration or even more scheduling (you see a pattern here)
  • Sticky notes for your diary for the really important stuff that you need to remember
  • Glitter pens – I’m sorry but who doesn’t like glitter pens?!
  • Notepad station with drawer. My Mum has always had one of these and she never misses a thing because of it.
  • An emoji “stressed ball” for those moments where you need to take a few minutes to calm and collect your thoughts.
  • An incredible £15 iTunes gift card, because…well because I’m nice like that and think everyone deserves a treat. Also, you could download and create part of a motivational playlist!

So, back to the important stuff.

First, you need to decide whether you’re going to invest straight away – or even at all – into your blog. When I started blogging three years ago I jumped straight in and bought my domain name over at Go Daddy for around £6.00. This isn’t absolutely essential, but my thought was that when I would eventually want the domain name in the future, I wouldn’t want it to be taken and end up with an alternative I wasn’t very happy about.

If you don’t want to buy a domain that’s fine, most blogging platforms offer free accounts. Blogger and WordPress offer really good free accounts that you can jump straight into and create your website! They are super simple to use and are among the most popular for free hosting.

If you are going to buy a domain, head over to Go Daddy or Bluehost to choose and buy your domain. You can also choose to go self-hosted on here with easy instructions on how to do it, and also 24/7 help available if you do get stuck.

You will need to create your brand. 

This will consist of deciding what you’re going to write about (your niche) and creating a name that fits with it or is relevant to you in some way. Try and make your name unique and catchy, something that your soon-to-be readers will remember.

Once you have done all of this you can begin creating your blog! Here are a few tips to follow when creating a great blog post:

  • Make the title eye-catching. You want your readers to be drawn in. Read how you can do that here.
  • Think about who you’re writing for, and how your post will benefit them.
  • Write an introduction on what you’re going to be talking about.
  • Make sure you write grammatically correct, one massive thing for me that will make me close that browser window is if someone’s writing is all over the place. A good way to check this is to use Grammarly that you can install right into your browser to help you.
  • Create a call-to-action at the end of your article, this will keep your readers engaged and increase your returning visitors.
  • Relate to your targeted audience.
  • Don’t be shy. Include personal experiences, readers love that.
  • Link back to your sources for information, the sources that are other bloggers will totally appreciate this.

Once you have created your blog post you will then need to share it. I’m sure you all know the social media platforms but here are the main ones that bring in traffic to my blog.

  • Facebook – create a page for your brand that your fans and friends can like. You can also join Facebook groups dedicated to bloggers where you can share your work.
  • Twitter – it is super easy to reach the right people on Twitter with the use of hashtags and retweets. You can also “tag” people in your tweets to get their attention.
  • Pinterest – Pinterest is one of the biggest sources of traffic for many bloggers because it’s a search engine and once your pin is out there, anyone can find it. You can also join Pinterest group boards within your niche to increase your traffic even more. Make sure your pin images are high quality to catch people’s eye. Here’s how you can do that.
  • Stumble Upon – this little beauty was unknown to me until recently. Basically, you upload your blog posts and the more it gets “stumbled on” the more traffic you receive.
  • Tumblr – Tumblr is a blogging platform in itself, but I have linked my blog to it so that when I post, it goes onto my Tumblr account too.
  • Instagram – Instagram allows people to discover you by the images you upload and the hashtags you use. Be sure to use good quality images for the best results.

Then you need to think about scheduling your posts to your social media accounts. I find an amazing way to schedule my pins is through Tailwind, which comes with an option for a free account, and gives you a free tutorial. One program I use which is incredible for scheduling posts and growing my Twitter is Crowdfire – this will schedule and post for you to many social media accounts at times you choose, or it will even pick the best time for you. It also gives you little tips on how to expand your reach. Honestly, get them both.

Another super important thing to do is to read other people’s blogs and leave thoughtful comments on their work. They will return the love! Not only that, reading other blogs can spark your own inspiration and give opportunities for collaborations with other bloggers. Also, brands and companies are able to find you through you leaving your web address on other blogger’s posts.




 

Right so you’ve now got your own blog, and traffic coming in, so how do you make money?

The first way you can begin making money is by adding Google adverts onto your website. It’s pretty simple but you can find out more here. Make sure you read their use policy as if you get caught out misusing the system you could get into big trouble. Google Adsense will place adverts into your blog where appropriate, and people who click through those adverts will earn you money per click. Not loads per click, but the amount adds up.

Another way to make money is to sign up for Bloggers Required, where you will receive blogging assignments straight to your email address as they are uploaded to the database. Then all you have to do is apply for these assignments, once the brand/company has selected you (this will normally be by email) then away you go!

Sponsored blog posts are another way of making money. Companies will pay you to display something of theirs that you will link back to them. This could be anything from sidebar links, widgets, reviews to a guest post.

You can make money on your blog by placing affiliate links in your posts. This often comes through reviewing a product for a company and the more clicks it gets, the more money you earn.

Creating your own merchandise or product that you can sell on your blog.

That is literally all you need to do. It may seem like a lot to take in, but honestly, once you’ve done it all once, it will become second nature.

Here are a few key things to remember:

  • Make your posts easily shareable – add sharing buttons to your site.
  • Post regularly, you can’t expect people to keep coming to your site if there’s no new content to read.
  • Share other people’s posts on your social media accounts, people will get bored if all you do is spam your stuff.
  • Create catchy headlines.
  • Use high-quality images.
  • Research SEO (search engine optimization) this will help your blog to be found.

The giveaway

Now for the giveaway. I am giving away a lovely bloggy bundle that every blogger will find useful, new or established. The giveaway will end 29/06/2017 at 11.59pm UK time.
a Rafflecopter giveaway




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