Could You Blog Your Way Out of Student Loan Debt?

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Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

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With all the personal websites out there featuring slick ads, sponsored articles, and endorsement opportunities, bloggers today must be making bank, right?

It depends.

According to a ProBlogger survey, only 13 percent of bloggers make more than $1,000 a month from their blogs. On the flip side, 63 percent of bloggers make less than $100.

But there is a sweet spot in the middle – the 24 percent of bloggers who earn $100 to $999 a month. How much faster could money like that help you pay off your student loan?

How to start a blog the smart, cheap, and easy way

If you’d like to be one of the people who earn several hundred dollars a month through blogging so you can put that extra income towards student loan payments, keep reading to find out how.

A few key decisions

1. Choose your niche

What’s your area of expertise? What are you passionate about? What topic can you see yourself blogging about for years to come?

Once you have your list, do some research to find out what specific terms people on the web are searching for related to your chosen topic(s). This will ensure there’s an audience out there for you.

I recommend using the Keyword Planner from Google Adwords. Use the “Get search volume data and trends” option to search your topic (and related keywords) for average monthly searches and competition.

If the results aren’t what you hoped for, that’s not to say you need abandon a topic you love. If you’re an entertaining writer with a unique point of view, you can garner a following writing just about anything. Even so, keyword research is a good way to rule out ideas you could take or leave.

2. Choose your host

You need a web hosting company to house, serve, and maintain the files on your site. You have numerous options, but I recommend choosing from one of PC Magazine’s best-rated web hosting services. Just be sure you choose one with managed WordPress hosting.

There are free options, too, but that’s not the route you want to go if you’re looking to make money from your blog. Fortunately, using a web hosting service is not expensive. As you’ll see, GoDaddy, Bluehost, and HostGator all have hosting plans under $4 a month.

3. Choose your domain

Maybe it’s your main keyword. Maybe it’s a word you made up. Maybe it’s your name. What’s most important is making sure the domain you choose is:

  • Memorable
  • Easy to spell
  • Not too long
  • Has a .com extension

You’ll likely be offered a free domain when you sign up for web hosting. Otherwise, domains are pretty cheap, running from $10 to $15 per year. I recommend signing up for automated renewal as well (I lost a domain because I forgot to renew and getting it back wasn’t easy).

Getting your blog set up

1. Install WordPress

Provided you’ve chosen a service with managed WordPress hosting (as you should), they’ll walk you through the simple installation process.

2. Choose your theme

Your theme is essentially an out-of-the-box design scheme. You can pay for premium themes, but exhaust your free options first. You can always upgrade to a premium theme later.

3. Install plugins

Plugins are add-ons that can help add special features and reporting to your blog. There are countless options, but start with the free basics. Once, you’re up and running, I recommend checking these out:

  • Akismet (to protect your blog from spam)
  • Google Analytics
  • Yoast SEO
  • Check and Enable GZIP Compression
  • EWWW Image Optimizer
  • If Modified Since Header
  • WP Fastest Cache
  • Simple share buttons adder

Don’t let any of the names of these plugins scare you. Find them, activate them, adjust Settings (if necessary), and you’re good to go. And should you activate a plugin you decide you don’t want, just deactivate and delete it.

A few blogging best practices

When you’re first learning how to start a blog, you don’t need any technical expertise. But it’s a good idea to learn what you can as you go. Explore your dashboard and use the free tutorials available to you through

It’s also a good idea to follow these simple best practices of blogging so you can give your readers a clean, enjoyable reading experience:


Some may be on the long side (1,500+ words). Others may be on the short side (500 words or less). That said, you’ll see that your Yoast SEO plugin recommends a 300-word minimum.


In each post, include a couple of internal links to other posts or pages on your site. It’s also a good idea to sprinkle in external links to other blogs or websites, too.


Use short blocks of text, subheaders throughout, and a font style and size that’s easy to read.


The title of your blog post is the first thing readers will see. If it’s not intriguing, it will also be the last. Spend time on it.

Privacy policy and terms of use

You need this. Look at a couple of your favorite blogs, see how they do their privacy policy and terms of use, and do something similar.

Promote your blog

Social media

Build a presence, publish your posts, and share the posts of others. The social media platforms you choose to use depend on where your audience hangs out. You know the usual suspects – Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google Plus, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube.

Blog comments

Find other blogs in your niche, become a regular reader, and leave comments on their posts. It’s a great way to drive traffic to your site and develop relationships with other bloggers.

How to make money blogging


Ad networks, such as Google Adsense, are the easiest of the monetization options to set up. They can also be the most difficult to make much money from, as you need a lot of traffic for clicks on Google ads to add up.

Private display ads are another option, but selling them requires a healthy amount of traffic so that advertisers have good reason to pay you for the space.

Affiliate links

This is most lucrative monetization option for a lot of bloggers. You just have to let readers know when a post contains affiliate links (meaning if the reader clicks through and buys the product, you get paid for it). If you go this route, the Amazon affiliate program is a good program to start with.


This is where a lot of bloggers say the big money lies, particularly e-courses for which you can charge hundreds of dollars to an unlimited number of people. Other product ideas include webinars, e-books, special content membership/subscriptions, books, and merchandise.


Once you start blogging on a topic, your readers see you as an expert in your niche. That means you may be able to charge for services like consulting, coaching, and speaking engagements.

You don’t necessarily need your blog to make a dime for it to lead to new income. It just might get you a job – blogging for another site or supplementing your resume for landing full-time work.

What does a successful blog look like?

Take a look at some of the income reports of various bloggers. You can see how many pageviews they’re getting, how much money they’re making, and where that money is coming from.

Bottom line: Yes, you could blog your way out of student loan debt. The odds are against you, but if you like blogging, love your topic, and do the work, anything is possible. You could make enough money blogging to pay off your student loans and even turn it into a new career.

Interested in refinancing student loans?

Here are the top 6 lenders of 2018!
LenderVariable APREligible Degrees 
Get real rates from up to 4 Lenders at once

Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.

Laurel Road Disclosures

  1. VARIABLE APR – APR is subject to increase after consummation. The variable interest rates are based on a Current Index, which is the 1-month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) (currency in US dollars), as published on The Wall Street Journal’s website. The variable interest rates and Annual Percentage Rate (APR) will increase or decrease when the 1-month LIBOR index changes.

2 Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Student Loan RefinanceFixed rates from 3.999% APR to 7.804% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 2.480% APR to 7.524% APR (with AutoPay). Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at either 8.95% or 9.95% depending on term of loan. See APR examples and terms. Lowest variable rate of 2.480% APR assumes current 1 month LIBOR rate of 2.07% plus 0.91% margin minus 0.25% ACH discount. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, the fixed or variable interest rate offered will depend on your creditworthiness, and the term of the loan and other factors, and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. *To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit inquiry. Unlike hard credit inquiries, soft credit inquiries (or soft credit pulls) do not impact your credit score. Soft credit inquiries allow SoFi to show you what rates and terms SoFi can offer you up front. After seeing your rates, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit inquiry. Hard credit inquiries (or hard credit pulls) are required for SoFi to be able to issue you a loan. In addition to requiring your explicit permission, these credit pulls may impact your credit score
  2. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (

3 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

  1. Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). The following table displays the estimated monthly payment, total interest, and Annual Percentage Rates (APR) for a $10,000 loan. The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) shown for each in-school loan product reflects the accruing interest, the effect of one-time capitalization of interest at the end of a deferment period, a 2% origination fee, and the applicable Repayment Plan. All loans are eligible for a 0.25% reduction in interest rate by agreeing to automatic payment withdrawals once in repayment, which is reflected in the interest rates and APRs displayed. Variable rates may increase after consummation. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 2.08% effective July 25, 2018.

4 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  1. Education Refinance Loan Rate DisclosureVariable rate, based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of August 1, 2018, the one-month LIBOR rate is 2.07%. Variable interest rates range from 2.72%-8.17% (2.72%-8.17% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the borrower’s loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a cosigner. Fixed interest rates range from 3.50%-8.69% (3.50% – 8.69% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a cosigner. Lowest rates shown require application with a cosigner, are for eligible, creditworthy applicants with a graduate level degree, require a 5-year repayment term and include our Loyalty discount and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. The maximum variable rate on the Education Refinance Loan is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens Bank is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of their loan.
  2. Federal Loan vs. Private Loan Benefits: Some federal student loans include unique benefits that the borrower may not receive with a private student loan, some of which we do not offer with the Education Refinance Loan. Borrowers should carefully review their current benefits, especially if they work in public service, are in the military, are currently on or considering income based repayment options or are concerned about a steady source of future income and would want to lower their payments at some time in the future. When the borrower refinances, they waive any current and potential future benefits of their federal loans and replace those with the benefits of the Education Refinance Loan. For more information about federal student loan benefits and federal loan consolidation, visit We also have several resources available to help the borrower make a decision at, including Should I Refinance My Student Loans? and our FAQs. Should I Refinance My Student Loans? includes a comparison of federal and private student loan benefits that we encourage the borrower to review.
  3. Citizens Bank Education Refinance Loan Eligibility: Eligible applicants may not be currently enrolled, must be in repayment of their existing student loan(s) and must make the minimum number of payments after leaving school. Primary borrowers must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or resident alien with a valid U.S. Social Security Number residing in the United States. Resident aliens must apply with a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. The co-signer (if applicable) must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a valid U.S. Social Security Number residing in the United States. For applicants who have not attained the age of majority in their state of residence, a co-signer will be required. Citizens Bank reserves the right to modify eligibility criteria at anytime. Interest rate ranges subject to change. Education Refinance Loans are subject to credit qualification, completion of a loan application/consumer credit agreement, verification of application information, certification of borrower’s student loan amount(s) and highest degree earned.
  4. Loyalty Discount Disclosure: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower or their co-signer (if applicable) has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower and their co-signer (if applicable) have submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, or other student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DE, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, and VT and some products may have an associated cost. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate disclosed in the Loan Approval Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.
  5. Automatic Payment Discount Disclosure: Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. Discount is not available when payments are not due, such as during forbearance. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account three or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.
  6. Co-signer Release: Borrowers may apply for co-signer release after making 36 consecutive on-time payments of principal and interest. For the purpose of the application for co-signer release, on-time payments are defined as payments received within 15 days of the due date. Interest only payments do not qualify. The borrower must meet certain credit and eligibility guidelines when applying for the co-signer release. Borrowers must complete an application for release and provide income verification documents as part of the review. Borrowers who use deferment or forbearance will need to make 36 consecutive on-time payments after reentering repayment to qualify for release. The borrower applying for co-signer release must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. If an application for co-signer release is denied, the borrower may not reapply for co-signer release until at least one year from the date the application for co-signer release was received. Terms and conditions apply.
  7. Average savings based on 18,113 actual customers who refinanced their federal and private student loans through our Education Refinance Loan between January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017. The calculation is derived by averaging the monthly savings of Education Refinance Loan customers whose payments decreased after refinancing, which is calculated by taking the monthly student loan payments prior to refinancing minus the monthly student loan payments after refinancing. The borrower’s savings might vary based on the interest rates, balances and remaining repayment term of the loans they are seeking to refinance. The borrower’s overall repayment amount may be higher than the loans they are refinancing even if their monthly payments are lower.
2.57% – 5.87%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Earnest
2.80% – 6.38%1Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Laurel Road
2.48% – 7.52%2Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit SoFi
2.47% – 7.99%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Lendkey
2.57% – 6.65%3Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit CommonBond
2.72% – 8.17%4Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Citizens
Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.