How Pros Make Money Online

Income Diary

Make Money Online, My Personal Story, How I Created

By:     Topics: Blogging

Make Money Online With A Blog

A frequently asked question these days – is how did I come to create With this post I hope to answer that question, let you in on some of my secrets and also hopefully inspire you.

Since creating such a well known brand and popular blog, it has allowed me to team up with people and create a number of seriously profitable businesses such as Popup Domination, Site Profit Domination and Blog Creation Domination!

Before creating, I had a few major websites – the young entrepreneurs website: and a web design blog which I sold for over $20,000 only 6 months after starting it.

Both sites earned me good money, but nothing impressive. My ambition was to have a website that could earn me at least a 6 Figure income.

With my other sites I had become very knowledgeable about blogging, about content generation and about getting heaps of quality traffic to my websites. I was also increasingly being asked by visitors to my websites about how to build a website like

Looking back now at an amazing last 7 months or so I am in particular struck by something that I read in a survey about entrepreneurs recently:

Entrepreneurship is about solving the problems of society, not starting a business for one’s own sake

Now it would be a bit over the top to suggest that I started to solve the problems of society – but it would be true to say that I started it because I wanted to solve a ‘problem’ – the problem of being constantly asked questions about how to create a blog or how to make money online?

It was out of solving this ‘problem’ that was born – the original idea being to share my experiences with blogging and making money online while at the same time inspiring others with features about other bloggers who had done amazing things online.

It has actually been quite therapeutic writing up this post. It really is amazing what can be achieved in a few short months when you put your mind to it. If there is one lesson in particular I would like to share it is:

That in order to RECEIVE, you must first GIVE

So many bloggers get excited about setting up a blog, but cannot for whatever reason get over that hurdle that exists when you first start out – of writing content, researching posts, building relationships etc (The GIVING bit) with very little in the way of income coming back in return.

So often I visit a Blog and see that in the first month of operation there are plenty of posts but come the second or third month the posts have become less frequent.

I wish I could say Blogging is an easy way to make money – but I can’t. I can however say it is an excellent way to make money and frankly it does eventually become quite easy, but not until you have first gave of yourself and created something of value that other people will follow.

I started out small, and I even remember getting excited when I started to make $10 a day with Google Adsense a few years ago – fortunately these days the numbers are quite a bit higher and I am even starting to experience some $1000 Days of earnings.

I hope you enjoy My Story and I hope it Inspires you.

To all our Successes


The Story behind the Creation of IncomeDiary

Back in March of 2009 I had decided I wanted to create an eCourse of some type, perhaps teaching people how to create their own site just like Retireat21. Every day I would have several people emailing me, asking “How do I create a blog” and I would simply reply sending them a link to my create a blog page on Retireat21 but I knew I could be doing something much better.

Later in the month I attended Yanik Silvers Underground Online Seminar and Ryan Allis was speaking on stage about when he brought up a screen shot of his website that featured an opt-in for a 7 Day free eCourse on email marketing. People often ask me where I get my ideas – I always say ideas are all around us, if we open ourselves up to the possibility. When I was sitting in Yanik Silver’s Underground Seminar I was looking for ideas – Fortunately for me Ryan Allis was sharing his experience and insight and that was I suppose the initial germ of an idea for what has become my biggest money earner to date.

From that single idea I went on to create my own 7 day free eCourse to making money blogging which has now been downloaded over 50,000 times.


Alex, David, Michael, Marshall and Albert at Underground 5!

Later that day I was sitting with David Leggett, Marshall Haas and Alex Maroko in the lobby of the seminar hotel. David and I were helping some people set up their own blogs, getting hosting, buying themes etc. Each of these people bought their hosting, themes etc via my affiliate links, earning me something like $200. It is strange looking back – but I just knew I was on to something if I could create a System (an eCourse) that would teach other would be bloggers how to blog.

I was pumped about my ideas (I even had trouble sleeping that night with excitement) and frankly for the first time ever on a trip to the USA excited about getting back home to England and putting my ideas into practice.

On the final day before we departed for the airport we had quite a bit of time to spare as the flight was not until late evening, so I was hanging around in the hotel Lobby catching up on some emails when Alex Jeffreys came up to me asking me when I was heading for the airport – it turns out we have the same flight so Alex sits down beside me and we chat.

Alex and I talked each other’s blogs and sharing ideas, eventually heading over the Hotel Starbucks to grab a coffee. I may be young but one thing I have worked out is that SUCCESS comes to those who actively seek it, those who actively FOCUS on it. Alex Jeffreys is that kind of guy and so am I and while in Starbucks we met another success seeker – James Schramko. Alex, James and I all sat down together with our Laptops, started to brainstorm, share ideas etc and began to experience now what I refer to as “The Starbucks Effect”.

I had told Alex and James that I had done over 100 interviews with top internet entrepreneurs and I had around 100,000 visitors coming to website every single month. They seemed impressed that I could drive a lot of traffic but when I saw that they were getting a fraction of the traffic I had but earning a good deal more than me, I was intrigued and just a little miffed as well.

It is not often that you get the chance to sit down with Internet Marketers of the quality of James and Alex so for the next few hours I made it my mission to find out what Alex and James knew that I didn’t. This is what I discovered:

The No Leakage Rule

It seemed a bit of a risk when James told me to try promoting only affiliate products and not sell advertising spaces as I knew I had $2000 coming in every month without any issue. He told me that if the only place they could go is through an affiliate link or leave my website, I was more likely to make money. He also told me that if 10 of my advertisers are promoting affiliate links themselves then it must be working for them. Basically the no leakage rule means, don’t have advertisers, don’t link to other websites in your sidebar, basically making sure the only way they can leave your site is via an affiliate link or closing the browser.

Offer Your Visitors Audio Interviews / Podcasts

I told my new mentors that all my interviews were done over email. i.e. I emailed the interviewee and they emailed their answer back.

Alex did not like that, and to quote him he said: “Audio interviews are where it’s at”. Looking back, of course he was right, indeed I had quite a few people not do an interview because I did not offer an audio option.

To do the interviews, they suggested I use Skype and record the phone call with Pamela, which both work perfectly for the job. As well as that, to display the audio on my blog I use Podcasting Plugin and I also get my audios transcribed by CastingWords so that people can read it if they can’t listen to audio. This also gives me a huge advantage in the search engines because I have thousands of keyword rich words.

It seems a simple decision now but looking back it was actually a huge decision – I decided rather that change the exiting site it would be easier to start with a completely new domain.

I had previously bought the domain of Tom Sinfield for $100 and had not used it and felt it would work perfectly for this project. I also thought it would be wise that I build IncomeDiary in a way that anyone else could, so I could write an eBook and show them step by step how they can follow in my footsteps to make money online blogging.

Building – The Early Days

After deciding I would use the domain I quickly found a premium WordPress theme from ThemeForest called Sahifa, I installed my blog and uploaded the theme. After asking David Leggett for his suggestions, I decided to hire him at a VERY expensive rate (although later proved to be well worth it) and we began customizing the blog theme. These changes included:

  • RSS feed including an Aweber Opt-in box so when I update my blog, readers would be emailed instantly alerting them that there is something new to read. I decided to go ahead and use a paid service because that would give me full control over my emails, unlike free alternatives such as Feedburner.
  • Activated Threaded Comments which comes with every ThemeForest theme, which basically lets you reply to each comment, you can enable this option  in discussion settings in your WordPress control panel. We then went ahead and made any comments I made green so they stand out.
  • Social bookmarking links at the top of every post. Yes they look really cool but as far as I can see they don’t make any in pact in the traffic we receive, so for all of those who keep asking me to release them as a download, don’t bother 😉
  • Created a custom page for the optin page for our eCourse, now I know a lot of people would put there optin all over there website to make sure they got as many people opting in as possible, although I have been tempted, I decided having a dedicated page because I wanted people to value what they were signing up to and know what was involved. We also used Aweber for the email optin on this page, if you need more information on email marketing, check out this post.
  • Blogging Resources page was not necessarily built to make money but to give a better idea to my readers that the things I recommend are clearly the best products with the lowest prices. Having said that, thousands of people use the page monthly to find resources for their blogs.
  • Finally, we did a whole bunch of graphics to make the site visually impacting.

As well as customizations, we don’t even use a handful of plugins so I do worry when I see people creating posts called “30 WordPress Plugins every bloggers need” – I’m proof you don’t need them. So often I get asked, “Michael, what WordPress plugins do you use”? Here they are:

  • Podcasting Plugin which allows me to add a player to blog posts so people can play our audio interviews.
  • WP-ContactForm which is basically a contact form, really simply plugin that works perfectly. For anyone who has tried to create a contact form on a normal website, you will realize just how hard it can be.
  • Comment Notifier which is basically an RSS feed for comments, alerting people who subscribe when there are new comments.
  • All in One SEO Pack which basically makes optimizing your blog for search engines really easy.

What Products Should I promote?

Now that I had put together the bulk of the site, I still had to decide on content and monetization. I knew from discussing with James and Alex that I wanted to promote affiliate products only but which ones to promote? For the blogging resources page it didn’t matter, I could include anything I wanted in the comparison charts as it simply is a comparison between what you get and at what price. But for my eCourse and in other places throughout the blog, it was a bit more difficult.

Recommending the right products is very important as it can really affect your earnings, it has to be a great product, great customer service and offer a good affiliate deal, and luckily it just seemed the best services offer the best affiliate sales, perhaps because they can convert more people so can pay out more. I bought all my domains through GoDaddy, so I knew I could promote them, whenever creating blogs for clients and friends, I would use HostGator so I knew I could put my name behind them and I was personally using a theme from ThemeForest so of course I can recommend them. This is what I believe to be crucial to my monetization success, you can’t promote something you don’t believe in and haven’t tested, period!

More Business Changing Moments

Early on one of my first interviewees (and most popular) at IncomeDiary was the King of Continuity – Mr Ryan Lee. Ryan is another generous mentor of mine and he took a big interest in what I was doing. Not only that he invited me to his Continuity Summit event in Connecticut last May.

So here I am again in America – this time at Ryan Lee’s event along with Alex Maroko again. I showed off my sites to a lot of people there and even had one die hard fan come to the event just to see me. I had quite an amusing experience when I was talking to Mike Hill – one of the speakers and a hugely successful Internet Marketer. Mike and I are talking when an IncomeDiary Fan comes up, interrupts us (politely) and asked if he could get a picture with me to show his son and asks Mike to take the photo 😉 (Really Mike, I know you are a bigger STAR than me — but this was one of those moments when I realized I must be doing something right – when someone asks to be photographed with you.

Mind you, the coolest moment was when Ryan was giving a shout out to a few people at the beginning of the event and he mentioned Mark Victor Hansen who was sitting to my right then Mark Joyner who was sitting to my left and then me – although of course I know I’m nowhere near their level at present, to be recognized along with those big names we sooooooo cool.


Ryan Lee and Myself at Continuity Summit

While Ryan’s event I also realized I should be doing a few things better such as a having a custom homepage to drive people to the places on the site that I wanted them to go. (I call that a conversion secret) I also need a proper thank you page on the site, for people who sign up for the eCourse. So often people set up the OPT-IN for their newsletter etc – but forget to create a custom page (thank you page) for their news letter sign-ups to go to after they opt-in.

This past September I took on my first full-time member of staff here at This is already providing nice dividends – for a start I am working slightly harder. (Hard to believe — but true) because when you are paying someone to work full time you want to make sure you’re around to make sure they got work to do.

I now am more motivated then ever. We decided that we needed to make the website “bullet proof” which is a new rule of mine which basically means every single aspect of your website is perfect/bullet proof. We fixed every error we could find and improved anything that was necessary which helped increased conversions quite a lot.

Where am I now With IncomeDiary?

It’s crazy to think I have done all this in 7 months and to know that I messed around for years before with things I was told that “work” when they clearly didn’t. What I have achieved:

  • I now earn more than most people do in a day (sometimes a week) before I even wake up, from a passive income on IncomeDiary alone.
  • My site gets an average of over Twitter Tweets 100 times every day, in fact last month we got 800 tweets in a single day!
  • 5000 People Have Taken My FREE eCourse to making money online blogging and not yet had anyone say a bad word about it.
  • Broke into the top 20,000 websites according to Alexa which was a big target of mine. Although Alexa isn’t always that accurate, I had set it as a goal.
  • I employed my first person full time, he had worked with me on WebDesignDev for a few months and I realized I needed to up my game and the risk seemed a no brainer.

The Future of IncomeDiary

Every time I get interviewed I get asked this, where do you see your future, where will your blog be in 5 years, etc.. To be honest, I don’t know, I just hope to keep moving forward, make a small difference and have fun of course. We have quite a lot of quite big updates planned for IncomeDiary but like everything, things get in the way and everything seems to take longer than expected.

Why Do I Think I Have Been So Successful?

I started this blog at the time 100’s of other make money online blogs started, they had all the same goal, and be the next John Chow. Most of them went on to earning no more than $200 and either being sold on Sitepoint or just going offline. I came to the niche with a different angle, which was to present my content in a way no other blog did.

It was really simple, I was to interview all the big internet entrepreneurs and ask them to give the advice, that way my visitors got the best advice and not just another blog post about how you can make $10 a day with Google Adsense.

The second aspect of my content was to inspire, I created top lists that would impress every reader but also give the impression they could do it themselves if they wanted to (which I believe they could).

The other reasons these two content methods work so well for me is that I’m dyslexic (my spelling and grammar is terrible) and it doesn’t matter how hard I try, I am always slipping up which is pointed out by quite a lot of my readers. So I wanted to share knowledge but keep the writing side of it down to a minimum. I sometimes think that if my school teachers knew I now write for a living they would tell you it was a lie, impossible! I really was that bad, I remember reading to my mum when I was like 12 and she would fall asleep, I was just that slow and boring, and when I do finally come to the end of a page, I would have to read it again because I completely forgot what it was about.

The key elements to my success would have to be:

Providing Value, Being Inspired, Hard Work (at times) and Consistency!

To Your Blogging Success,

Michael Dunlop

PS. Really guys, if I can achieve this in 7 months, you guys can definitely do the same, if not better!

"Do Not Write Another Blog Post Until You Watch This Free Video..."

Traffic Domination

Watch this free video to learn...

  • How I got over 10,000,000 people to visit my websites.
  • The types of blog post that got me all that traffic.
  • How to get someone else to do it for you!

Where should I send your video?

How we get over 64.75% of new email subscribers

We first added a popup opt-in box to IncomeDiary back in 2010. Today, it gets us more subscribers than our homepage opt-in, footer opt-in, sidebar opt-in and squeeze pages combined. After seeing how well it worked for us, we decided to develop it into a plugin our readers could use. It's been so popular that over 60,000 websites now use it!
Click Here For More
  • Michael

    I only came across your site a few weeks ago and already I’m keen to see what you write each time.

    While reading this post, 2 things sprung to mind.

    One. You have shared a lot of great advice via a story and I can understand why you say, “That in order to RECEIVE, you must first GIVE”. You certainly have provided advice here.

    The second thing is relationships. You seem to have built up excellent relationships with experts and that has really improved your brand and profile.

    All that is very impressive from a 20-year-old living in a little quiet village on the south coast of England (I live in Worthing – just down the road!).


    • Michael

      Hello Andrew,

      Thanks very much, glad you are enjoying my blog – I have been really making an effort recently to up my game and share a lot more.

      For a second there I was wondering how you knew about my village, ha! Great to see someone local reading my site, how did you find it?


  • Tammy

    HI Michael! Thanks for taking the time to share your story with the world. Really like this site and your other two (retireat21 and webdesigndev :))

  • Scott from SloggedIt

    WOW That was a LONG read but totally worth every word!

    Looking forward to seeing some of the things you bring to the table in the future!

  • Jef

    Nice work Michael. Thanks for sharing. I’m reading your stuff carefully and taking action as necessary. Yup, giving is really the key, I’ve built a few thousand unique visitors by doing just that.

    You sent me some stuff about monetizing your blog and it is killer! Thanks.

    Rock on to greater success.


  • Amilcar

    I did read your post word by word. Your story is amazing, but your sincerity is even more. Thanks not only for sharing your knowlegde and experience, but for being so honest.


  • Muzi Mohale

    Amazingly while I was still hooked on Retireat21 (which I discovered sometime in 2008), you launched incomediary without punting it on retireat21 and i was surprised to discover it a few weeks after going live (not sure how that happened).

    it’s interesting to note that you bought this domain from Tom, where I’ve joined a Blog Flip Challenge through his blog.

    Your journey to creating IncomeDiary is very motivating and the lessons learnt about LEAKAGE I’m taking them to heart on my flip challenge.

    You’re always interviewing high profile internet entrepreneurs, that offers myself a huge motivation to also aim to achieve in the game. Though I’m way too old than you, I get so much inspiration from you and I’m proud to say I use your success as a model to my path in finding success.

    • Michael

      Hello Muzi,

      Thanks buddy, great to always see you comment. With IncomeDiary, I didn’t want to rely on Retireat21 to make it a success because I wanted to prove to everyone anyone can do it, even new people!

      Let me know how Tom’s Blog Flip Challenge goes and also the no leakage rule.



    • Sarge

      Wow, that’s cool you got the domain from Tom. I’m also participating in the blog flip challenge. It’s really great to be able to do something like this as a community.

      Also very surprising that this blog is only 7 months old!

      You’re a great inspiration Michael, I think I’ve been following this blog on and off for the last 4-5 months at least.

      BTW your enewsletter is very professional, a standard I hope to achieve.

      Keep up the good work and continue to inspire 🙂

  • Black Friday

    THANKS! You guys do a great blog, and have some great contests. Keep up the good work

  • Rafi

    Each time I get your updates in my inbox, I jump up to read your stuff and then I’d just realize that it’s so awesomely valuable.

    About this article, I really enjoyed reading each word and I am sure that is not only good but also spread with truly valuable advice, and sort of a journey of an entrepreneur’s rugs to riches.

    Good luck, Michael. I look forward to reading more valuable articles.


  • Kizito

    Hi Michael, thanks for the great post.Its always insightful to read how people actually created the success they enjoy. I love this about your sight. U don’t just preach principles but show how to actually live them. Thanks and keep up the great work.

  • Dan Briffa

    Hey Michael

    I love what your doing over here.. i started my own blog just a little under a year ago to.. and that has grown pretty well with over 5000 subscribers..

    Nice to see we also share the same mentor… Alex Jeffreys.. 🙂 great guy huh.. and I’m always meeting up with him for brainstorms at seminars etc..

    Anyhow just thought I’d drop by.. love the blog! Keep up the great work.

    Rock On


    • Michael

      Hey Dan,

      Alex rocks, very cool dude! Will try meetup with him before the year is up, perhaps see you there!


  • Umer Hayat

    Hey Micheal.
    This was a really inspiring story.
    I read it totally with full intention.
    I’m of your age and would like to be exactly like you and I know I’ll in few months.

    Btw my biggest concern is, I just wanted to know about your blog content. I mean you are writing it own or you are outsourcing it. On your blog I found list posting most occasionally and I believe, if any single person writing this type of post, It will take 2-3 days in researching/writing/compiling and all that.

    So it would be really helpful if you show us your way of writing etc.
    Thanks and waiting.

    Umer Hayat

    • Umer,
      I think I can answer this one. I’ve read many of Michael’s post and have asked him how he does it. He’s e-mailed and also sent a few links. I’ve also heard him speak through various online courses I take. He loves lists as you can see.

      He recommends a company called to do his lists. I contacted them and was able to get a list done for about 50.00 USD in two days (it will be on my site soon), pretty cheap for a person from the U.K., with our dollar tanking :-). Interstingly enough, they outsource the work :-). I’ve been creating a list on my own and its taken me three weeks now just gathering research, now I have to sift through it. So outsourcing is the key for this stuff.

      Outsourcing is not a bad thing. I’ve had my share of misfortunes, but clawing back now. Tyrone Shum actually has a course at which talks about oursourcing. He has a free report with three top outsourcing Internet Marketing guys which is a good read, so check it out if you like.

      If you can’t afford to outsource, just dedicate some time to getting your content done, monetize it using Michael’s ideas which he willingly shares on this blog, then outsource.

      Good luck to you. Let me know how you get on.


      • Umer Hayat

        Hey Jeff,
        Thanks so much for your kind and detailed answer.
        Actually outsourcing is not a big problem for me. Infect, I’m already running an SEO/Writing and outsourcing company at

        So it is not a problem for me. we can create such type of researched work even much much more cheaper from $50 because we have researchers from Pakistan and writers from Philippines as well as from Pakistan. So it is definitely not a problem.

        I’m just doing my basic ground work and within few months I’ll definitely start my own money making and to inspire bloggers blog.

        The issue for me is I’m testing which type of content really suite listeners and my prediction is content on Incomediary is really marvelous and if we provide this type of content, that will really worth long term.

        My question was how Micheal compile all the content and he only gave them the title and they do the rest or he told them the post limitations as well. they should need to cover and what not like that..:)

        Hope you understand my feelings and Micheal as well.


        Umer Hayat

        • Muzi Mohale


          Where do you source the dudes from Philippines and Pakistan?

          Note – when accessing your site, a virus warning flashes?

          • Umer Hayat

            Hey Muzi.
            Actually not understand what you are trying to say… Can you plz explain a bit so I can answer..:)

            Yes we are working on site, it will redesign and come up with new layout. I want to make it little more business look.

            Umer Hayat

          • Muzi Mohale

            Umer I meant, where do you get the guys from Pakistan and the Philippines…which website are these guys using to advertise their skills?

          • Umer Hayat

            Hey Muzi
            Actually they are from my own hometown.:)
            We have a nice office and our designers/developers and SEO staff working there…:)

            Only our writers are from Phillipines as they have high standard writings with years of experience.:)

            They are working under me, means that I and our affiliates get projects and they will complete it.:)
            Thanks and if you also need anything don’t forget to tell us.

    • Michael

      Hello Umer,

      I use to outsource like Jeff said but I recently took on my first employee and because of that, I now do this myself because I know my niche and I can put more value into what I’m doing. Outsourcing can be good but your best just taking the time to do it yourself. Depending on what the list is about, it can take anywhere from 3 hours to 3 days.


      • Michael,
        Just when I think I’m on to you, you outpace me. Pretty impressive for 7 months of work dude.

        Awesome that you are now outsourcing. After testing, I’m going to find a cheaper method to outsource. From reading Tyrone’s stuff, it looks like I could have gotten an entire month’s worth of work for not much more than what I paid for one list :-).

        For what its worth Umer, I gave them the title of the list and what I wanted, they did the research and provided me with the pictures, an Excel file and a html file. I don’t like how the html looks on my page so I will re-do that then make it live.

        • Umer Hayat

          Hey Jeff.
          Thanks alot for your nice info.

          It always looks good when anyone help out.

          You will see my blog in few months time. 🙂

  • Michael ….

    Thank You for such an awesome blog post!

    You always provide great content & interesting lists … and I have to say this has to be your best!

    It will be really amazing to see posts like this in the years ahead sharing your story as you continue to grow and do incredible things!

    Wish you the best!


    • Michael

      Definitly Robert, will follow up with future posts as the months and years go on. Glad you like this post so much.


  • S Ahsan

    The fact is, I like the way you send an email to your subscribers and take the time to help them out by sharing good knowledge. Have a great weekend Michael !

  • poch

    You have just proven by this piece that you’re not selfish or egoistic Michael. Bravo.
    It’s true we have to give first before we receive.
    But how long do we have to give or spend before we receive? What if we can’t afford giving anymore?
    Anyway, more power to IncomeDiary!

  • Hi Michael,

    I am not really a fan of make money sites because they are always trying so hard to sell you something. However, the quality of your articles is fantastic. I have every confidence that you are going to be a giant in your field.

  • Rob

    Awesome article you wrote here Michael! Really inspiring how your only 20 years old and your living the six figure dot com lifestyle. It’s really great of you to write this post and share it with your community!

  • marvincspw

    Nice work Michael. Thanks for sharing… Every day I learn something new… I wish I could help others to grow online businesses as you do

  • Pascal

    Hi Michael. You had many inspirations to become today’s position. But My first inspiration to blogging field is “You” only. I started to blog and help others to create a blog through my Red is Red blog. Hope I will do my bes with in coming 6 months.

  • Congratulations Michael! Another brilliant job. And your comments about promoting those things you know and have tested for yourself is so right on. As people like Wayne Dyer were great examples in the original Moneylove book, you are going to have a place of honor in the revised and annotated edition. Each of your posts is like a full college MBA course!
    And you may be the impetus for a new understanding of dyslexia–for it obviously doesn’t hamper you in terms of your expressing yourself in a stunning, human, powerful way.

    • Michael

      Thanks very much Jerry, glad you enjoyed the read. Looking forward to seeing Moneylove 2.0!


  • Alex Taylorson

    Hey Michael, thanks for sharing your story in such detail! Being dyslexic as well it took me a while to read this post but was well worth the time ;-)… Your story is massively inspiring… I finished my degree 2 years ago in Chichester so I know your ‘little quiet village’ too. I’m just starting a project to develop software for my niche. Exciting times… As Gary Vee would say I better get back to it and Crush it!!!

    • Michael

      Hello Alex,

      Glad the post has helped, also cool to see yet another local reader, should consider doing a meetup sometime.


      • Alex

        Yeah I’m living just out side the New Forest now, but will have to get myself up your way to catch up in person soon. Would be great to pick your brains, and anyone else who local who would like to meet up too.


  • Marshall Haas


    I got the great pleasure to see Income Diary be created through a lot of skype conversations together in the beginning and even the UG5 event sitting in the lobby in that photo… all the way till now when the site is thriving!

    Keep kicking ass dude, its been great watching everything grow from the inception.

  • Sammie

    Michael, you are an inspiration of the highest order!

    Every time I get to read your post, I also salute you.
    I would love to know if one could make six figures from owing a forum site also (for we that couldn’t write).
    May Jehovah God guide and protect you always

  • Ms. Freeman

    No Leakage Rule now that is a fascinating way of doing things. That takes heaps of confidence in your content and the quality of your blog. We hear all the time, plaster ads and link to others it is the only way to make any money. I am impressed that you are taking the road less traveled and making a success of it. We can all learn something here. Bravo Job Well Done! 🙂

  • James Cunningham

    Really Good Post Michael, makes me want to try again at starting a blog. Your description of how the posts just ground to a halt is the exact description of what happend to me last time I tried to start.

  • Ryan Sorensen

    Thanks Michael,

    I first saw late last year and it got me pumped up about not only making some money online, but to actually make it my career. I am definitely an admirer!

    I love traveling and my wife and I spent summer 08 in Switzerland for 3 months during the EuroCcup. Awesome experience! Our goal is to be able to live in Poland for a month during Eurocup 2012, all while making money from my web business. I’ve been working on my site consistently for the last couple of months and have started to make some money everyday. Thanks for the inspiration and keep up the good work. I hope to follow you to the top for years to come!

    Your fan in Denver, CO,

    Ryan S.

  • What a great post Michael, thanks for sharing your journey. One of the aspects that resonated with me was that if you want to take things to a whole new level, you should find an expert and learn what they know.

    I too, have been fortunate to have what I call a ‘James Schramko Sliding Door Moment’ – a chance meeting that changed my life.

    More power to you.

  • David Walker

    Very impressive Michael! Nothing beats learning about a successful blogger’s experiences to inspire us to work towards that same kind of achievement. Your top lists are what I come back for every time, right after all those interviews with top bloggers. I’m from Wales and another huge fan of Alex Jeffreys. Keep up the great work.

  • Maxp76 ( Massimo )

    Hi Michael,
    first sorry for my English 🙂
    This post is great and it’s a great resource for who want to make an Internet lifestyle!
    In Italy it’s not so easy to build this kind of sites, firstly in my opinion due to the language.. few Italians and few Italians on Internet 😀
    But I hope to do something like you in the future!

  • Michael, The sky is your limit, you’re doing great

  • Tammy

    Wow i commented earlier this morning and it’s amazing how many replies you’ve received since then! Seems you’ve really hit on something a lot of folks can relate to 🙂

  • Thank you Michael for sharing your entrepreneurial journey with us. As many others have stated before me, this post is quite inspiring.

    What really resonated with me was when you said “ideas are all around us, if we open ourselves up to the possibility.”

    I especially appreciate your reference to writing your blog from a point giving something of great value to your readers.

    Your authenticity and integrity really come through in the kind of content you provide Michael – thanks.

  • Vans

    Yeah…that was great i know that many replies you’ve receive since then. You are one of the many successful blogger . Sky is the limit for you. Keep it up bro, I hope someday i will be successful too.

  • Pyjammez

    Good job.

  • Thanks for sharing your success story.It’s an inspiration for all wants to make money online.

  • Chef Tony Marciante


    You have a great sense of style in your writing, it’s clear, honest and from the heart. THAT my friend, cannot be duplicated without being real. I’m 40 and have done enough research, I have been an entrepreneur my whole life pretty much, but really breaking in online. We all must realize that we know more than many about this space. WHATEVER your level or subject of expertise, you can teach about it and profit! Like setting up my restaurant, you have to hang a shingle out and say “I’m in business” and then, only then, can you actually create something and see if it works!

    I think many (including myself) get caught up in “buy another course” or “sign up for another newsletter” and are constantly in research mode..that IS important, but really, taking action will lead you to testing and proving your worth, then you’ll be able to succeed, or almost better, FAIL! and be one step closer to knowing your magic formula.

    You are inspiring, and at your age, I’m so excited for you and will be in touch. I do a TV show on business, perhaps you could be a skype interview on our show?

    Cheers, BIG compliments!!

    • Muzi Mohale

      Enough said Tony.

      • Muzi, not sure what you meant, but hey…my comments are from the heart, hope the readers find value…peace!

  • Fantastic Michael, great to see Income Diary doing so well, great post! The site is going from strength to strength. You continue to be an inspiration! Keep up the good work!

  • Michael you are a true genius! Keep it up. I’m sending my readers to see how it should be done!

  • Rahil

    Truly Inspirational! makes me think what i did in the past…hopefully not make the same mistakes again 🙂 keep it up bro!!!

  • Menandro

    You did a fine job here Michael… More power to you!

  • Luke Ahearn

    Hey Michael,

    Thanks for that great story!!!

  • Luke Ahearn

    Hey Michael,

    Thanks heaps for the inspiration and the motivational story!!

    I have put a on my website my journey, if you want jump on and have a look it would be great if you leave a comment.

    I will be making another page soon for people to put up there story. You couls post your story if you like..

    Luke Ahearn

  • Great story Michael



  • Sasha Gilberg

    thanks for being so honest Michael and telling us what you REALLY did not just what would sound cool

    It was equally due to you and James Schramko that I was inspired to start my own IM blog at

    as always, looking forward to your next post

    keep it up mate!

  • YSereyboth

    Thank for sharing your story! I am really passion with blogging and make mon3y online!

  • Great story. This blog has grown as fast as it has because of your dedication to the content. Top notch man!

    There are going to be some great things that come out of

  • MAN! That was SUPER inspiring!! Thanks for enlightenment!

  • Pingback: Weekend Links #2()

  • wdohmen

    Interesting read, at least the no advertisement was kind of a surprise for me to be honest, most definitely after reading and listing a lot to Mr. Gary Vaynerchuk. Just shows that their are many different ways to go about making money.

    Also surprising to read your from the Uk, where I always thought you were from the US.

  • Hello hello Michael,

    First sorry for my bad english

    I’m a french fan of your blog, i use your “TIWTTER” technique to increase my daily visit.I can say your technique is working but now i can add only one follower by day.

    Anyway, I like your blog because you shared a lot of great advice , Unfortunatly there is no blog like yours in french.
    I have creating my fashion blog ( in July 2009, and I have 30 000 visit by month and 90 000 pages view, And i working 1 hours and 30 minutes by day on the blog (because i have a full time job, a wife, and a children).
    I know a lot of blog in my nich who have more than 10000 visits by day. i KNOW I’m in a good nich but i don’t know how to promot the blog. If someone have advice for me send me a email

    THANKS! You do a great job with your blog
    ps: sorry for my bad english

  • Patrenia

    Great story Michael. I guess I have been reading your blog since the inception, but didn’t realize it. What an awesome story and it is filled with lots of inspiration. Seven months??? I have to get on the ball, because you have now proven that it can be done! Thanks for sharing…

  • Anna | Make Money Online

    Long but worth the read. I look forward to more of your posts especially your tips and advice of how to make money online.

  • Fast becoming my favourite blog site

  • Yan

    Kudos to you, Michael! Your site is definitely worth bookmarking! 🙂

  • Hi Michael,

    I had a chat to a good mate of mine yesterday, he owns Webfactore Ltd. He spends a few hundred pounds a month on – I suggested his money maybe better spent with income diary.

    Send him an email, say I sent you because he sells excellent websites and he has a new product launching next year.


    David is his site ;]

  • Kenney

    Hey Michael I really enjoyed your blogging course & like being on your email list…This was a great post…it took me a little while to get thru it…Your long winded but I believe it was worth it…I thank you for all the content you provide…Kenney

  • Excellent tips here Michael, I enjoyed reading how you came to start incomediary. Ive found this rather inspiring, and think the way your blog is designed is very key to the money you make.

    The idea that you and your friends came up with by adding affiliate links to your blog is great, I might try that myself when I have sponsors as its an amazing way to make money.

    Im still trying to get my own blog off the ground abit and grow the audience, but ive been very motivated by reading your success story! Thanks.

  • Isaac | GoBlogger

    Very impressive Mike! I find your your story is very interesting and inspiring. Your approach in blogging is also unique. I like it.

    I also like your key elements, quite close to mine: learning, hard-working, and persistence.

    Cheers 🙂

  • julian

    Hi Michael
    Very impressive, you are an inspiration to many young people. Keep up the good work.

  • Allan Johnson

    please tell us – how much money make you with this blog in every month ?

  • Maren Kate

    Very impressive! I love your take on things. I don’t do ad spaces at my site either so I completely agree… but I haven’t really started up the affiliate thing yet (working on it).

    This is an amazing blog & I’m so happy I found it. I also love doing interviews and seeing how well your doing with it makes me only think I need to do more 🙂


  • Ray

    Hi Michael,

    Well done on your success so far! I am another local Sussex blogger just a stones throw from you in West Worthing. I do have one recommendation for you though… add a photo to your Gravatar 🙂

    All the best.


  • Pingback: The True Story Of My Overnight Success | Make Money Online()

  • Pink Diamonds

    thanks for sharing your story – very inspiring.

    congratulations on your success.

  • congratulations Michael … i completly agree with Isaac!

  • Numan

    u are simply great …… please send me the procedure to earn onlin…….

  • Numan

    u are simply great …… i dont have mobile phone. i want to buy a mobile phone but idont have money …. i need 50 dollars … how can i earn or get this money … i dont have credit card to buy domain … but i have a bank account with no money in it. help me…….

  • Numan

    please help me ……. i need $50 ….. i will return you this money when i will be able to earn money online …. i need this money to start my online business,i have no money to start it ….. help me……..

  • Such a great story Michael – When I first read this post I thought to myself ‘I have to get to the Underground Online Seminar’ and just a few days ago I did!

    Law of attraction works! and it works so well! Our thoughts and feelings become our reality.

    Numan, if you need money fast the best way without a doubt is to sell stuff on ebay. Sell things you no longer want/need. Get the money man – if your life depended on it you would find a way. So find a way.

    It will help you grow as a person.

  • Hello Michael,
    This has to be the best blog i had read so far! You are the first person to outline the importance of GIVING not TAKING and suggesting what an entrepreneur should be “… about solving the problems of society, not starting a business for one’s own sake” For once i can see someone else out there cares!

    In the next few months i will be taking the leap into affiliate marketing/CPA to try my luck. I have had a goal for the past five years to be a millionaire by 28 and with the advice you have given i believe that this will come true before 25 (almost 23).

    It is refreshing to see someone so young understand the importance of the two comments mentioned above, GIVING not TAKING. Personally with the power of GIVING, i aim to establish a charity organisation to provide help and assistance to those who really need it!

    I wish you all the best in the future.

    Kind Regards,

  • Name (required)

    Great resources here and great story as well! It’s inspiring to see someone get success online – cheers!

  • overall a inspiring story specially the part of “no leakage” theory 🙂 really love it! will surely try to implement it on my blog too.

  • Pingback: How I Made $5000 in The First Month With a Brand New Blog | Make Money Online()

  • Leon Aldrich


    I’m getting close to launching my own site-blog; currently working on my own ebook (great minds).

    This grasshopper has learned much from you. I know you have SO much more to offer.

    I’ll be ordering all my products and services via your links here as usual.

    Can you recommend tools for posting across the vastness of Social Media: facebook, twitter, myspace, youtube, bookmarking?

    I also volunteer to spit shine your boots…



    p.s. What does it take to get refollowed on Twitter dammit?

    • Quality post. I always come back here to know more. And each time your articles give me positive thinking.

  • julie prawira

    awesome….two tumbs up!!

  • Pingback: My 6 Figure Blog Content Strategy | Make Money Online()

  • Pingback: The Ultimate Guide To Building a Successful Blog | Your 30 Day Plan! | Make Money Online()

  • Pingback: 50 Most Influential Bloggers of 2009 | Make Money Online()

  • Manuel

    Since I came across your site Michael, I just had to fall in love with it! It’s been just perfect for me ever since. posts like this keep me coming back time after time. Please try to keep the momentum going; a lot of people need it.

  • The reason why I started with my blog is not because of money but learning English.

    After I read your site I put on some advertise.
    Thanks Michael

  • Angela

    And you’re how old? Glad I found your blog.

  • bloggerchamps

    hi Michael,

    I have stumbled upon your blog from a blog carnival Its a great blog. Really good and informative posts on income diary . I am going to subscribe to your Rss feed now.

  • Man you’re story is the best story. I just hope to see more young people with the drive that you have…I wish at 21 I would have discovered the internet and not 4 years later.

  • Fabian Ramirez

    Michael, I totally understand your points. You really have to be super focused and willing to do what others are not doing. People think of website creation and they get a headache. I see blogging as a way for me to stay connected and to freshen up my typing skills. Plus it stimulate my mind as to what I want to say and to whom I want to say it to.

    Plus I get paid everytime I post something as i’m sure you do to. Great job man! I’m subscribing.

  • mk akan

    hi Mick,
    i have been hanging out and enjoying your content for a few weeks now.
    Your angle(or niche) is very great it is somewhat in the same line with ,which is a site that interviews mega online entrepreneurs.

    i have learnt a great deal from your blog just from observing what you do,your content and the layout.
    1. Even before i read this post ,i liked the way you placed affiliate products before and after your interviews.(i never knew it was called the leakage principle,now i do )
    2. Another thing is that interviews with successful people(or online celebs) usually brings traffic and this is what you do.
    3. Interviews with successful online entrepreneurs built your authority by association.
    4.working and networking with these top guys have also given you a chance to learn more right from the source,ask for help and get whatever advice you want.This is very valuable.
    keep up the good work,you will see me here more often.

    i will be starting a series in a few weeks on my blog about entrepreneurs ,i hope you don’t mind giving me a few minutes of your time in an interview.
    thanks a lot.

  • Christian James

    Hi Michael, i am not going to complement you because the previous 99 posts did it already…… anyway, great job though and i love this site:)

    i tend to be very meticulous and so i have started reading every post and article on your site and going through it in order so that i don’t miss any… i need to learn as much about blogging before i actually start….

    I am actually from the Caribbean, which sadly isnt first world like britain or usa…. have you had a lot of interactions from people in the Caribbean??

  • The Internet Book

    Michael, this is great information you are sharing with people. I like your style and appreciate your honesty and sincerity… a rare find these days, especially in the online marketing space.

  • Great post!!

    Thanks for sharing such a great story with us. You are my hero.


  • ron

    great story im a new blogger so i needed to hear something like this . it just goes to show that hard work pays off imagine all the traffic , content , etc , to get to where you are today . Keep up the good work .

  • Paul Sabaj

    I love the title of the book. When ya coming to the states again and what seminars. Love to buy you a drink and see whats in the future. Have a great week

  • Lilian

    Hello Micheal,
    Thanks for your great post.Its good to find your post its very inspiring and motivating.I am new to online business,blogging and generally making money online. I am from Kenya and it seams like am one on the very few in my population working online.So its pretty obvious i rely on the internet for inspiration and motivation. Keep on the good work , you boost the morale of those of us who want to prosper online . I f you can do it so can i.Thanks

  • Herbert

    I’m new to blogging and signed up for the 7 days course. I must commend you for the work you’ve put in here. Quite an eye opener, thanks. But hey, I like writing and can discourse several topics comfortably, can I build separate (multiple) blogs?

  • Prajwal Shinde

    Hi Michael,

    I follow your posts regularly and have studied your Blogging course. It has helped to me build my own blog which will be live in a few days. Keep up the good work.

    Prajwal Shinde

  • Affiliate Management Maven


    Am I ever happy I found your blog.

    My business partner and I are setting our selves up to become women earning over 6-figures online!

    We’re in the middle of changing our message on our blog and we are learning how to buy traffic in order to change our lives within one year.

    You are an inspiration Michael!


  • Alastair

    Nice site Michael you are an inspiration to all of us I enjoy reading new content on your site.

  • Great blog!

    What are your thoughts on the value of video blogging and using YouTube videos to drive traffic to your site?

  • Great story – let me know if you ever need an illustrator!

  • David Do

    Aloha Michael,

    I discovered your sites last night via you tube and have been chronically reading and learning your stuff.

    Your skills are impressive and I will be modeling your lead to build my own money-making blog world as I love social media and blogging!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

    From Hawaii,

    David Do

  • Kate Kutny

    Michael, you are a great writer and I have enjoyed reading what you wrote. I also enjoyed learning many important things and it was an excellent share! Thank you.
    I started blogging recently and I also enjoy teaching others how to blog like you. I helped my mom set up a blog and I’m still helping her become successful. It takes time and like you said “hard work”. And you can’t give up! If you fall, get back up and try harder. Thank you again for your great post’s and your successful website.

    Kate 🙂

  • Jennifer

    Michael, you had a great story to tell and it is very inspirational. It reminds people that you can make it as long as you stay focused and take action with a plan. Thanks for this excellent post.

  • Natalie King

    Hello Michael, It is obvious that you are a genius at what you do. I have recently started a cancer awareness blog. I am having a hard time getting visitors to my site. I feel great passion for this site and would like to turn it into a fulltime job eventually. How can I make great money with this site?

  • Lennex

    Great blog, from now on I am going to study it until I get the results I want. Thanks a lot man.

  • Pingback: Online Business Success | The Michael Dunlop 7 Step System()

  • Chris Gustafson


    This is a absolutely fantastic story that has inspired me to due some MAJOR renovations on my own blog.

    I love your “key elements” to success at the end, because it is what I have been trying to teach people on my blog for a while now (not effectively as you).

    Providing Value, Being Inspired, Hard Work (at times) and Consistency!

    Once again, great job man!

  • La Verne

    Hi Michael… I am very much happy to visit this blog. I just started blogging fo few weeks and really finding how to have a great and powerful frce for it. I’m now 22 nd hoping to retire 25…:) So, your story is very inspirational and is very informative. This inspires so much. I hope I can d the same as you…:) Thanks for sharing your knowledge…God bless you more…

  • Jake

    really inspirational story. Great information too. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  • tomasz

    Hi Michael. I write to you from poland 🙂 you are a great writer and I have enjoyed reading what you wrote. You are an inspiration Michael!

    P.S:can You give me anyidea for good bissnes 🙂

  • kritsanarak

    thank you for your idea and inspiration to me.

    Bangkok, Thailand.

  • ken

    I just started blogging a few weeks ago. I am learning a ton every day…this is truly amazing. Today I read your blog for the first time — go to it by searching ‘entrepreneur blogs’ on google….

    You are amazingly authentic in your posts — which I appreciate. Likewise, I appreciate that you share so openly.

    Thanks for doing what you do!!


  • haris

    I’d like to thanks in advance to you Michael. Actually I’m just started. But, I believe that you like to share…Gbu

  • Richard Anderson

    Hi Michael – great stuff and easily to follow, unlike a lot of the ‘just watch my 90 minute how to video’ stuff you see so often! I really enjoyed your interview with Mike Geary – his story sounds a little like mine although I’m still very much at ground zero and yet to find the ‘right path’ to internet success.

    Like Mike, I’ve bought plenty of budget ebooks and subscribed to several continuity programs without success, but I’m still hanging in there confident success can and will be mine. I look forward to learning more from your materials especially as I’m just up the road in Bournemouth! All the best Mike

  • AJWalton

    It’s very cool to read your story, you seem to have the “inspire” part in spades. Great showing for 7 months for work (though I realize I’m responding to this over a year late)

  • Binh

    Very inspirational… I appreciate how you share your personal flaws at the end. – Keep it up

  • Jacky

    This really inspires and motivates me to make a change in my life, thanks Michael and I hope once I become successful with my own site(newbie) maybe you can interview me one day 🙂

  • Darren Starr

    Hello mate, it’s Darren from London. Nice to see some people from the UK doing well from online marketing. I’m currently doing NPC, been with it for 6 months, still hardly making anything. Maybe it’s time to try blogging. Hope to catch up with you soon.

    Best Wishes,

    Darren Starr

  • Geppetto

    Amazing job….as a fellow internet marketer.. I’m proud of you and also continuously inspired by your work.

  • James Holmes

    Hello Michael –

    I have read your blog in the past, but it has been a while and I am so glad that I came across it again today. I continue to be impressed by all that you have accomplished, no doubt a result of both hard work, thoughtfulness in your approach, and a desire to provide massive value.

    I am going to bookmark your site and visit much more often. I enjoyed reading about your journey and will be keen to see where you go next with this site and your work.

    Have a blessed day!


  • That was a LONG but totally worth every word!

    • Mohammed

      That is absolutely true. Great post Michael very inspiring 🙂

  • I am very impressed by your work and unfortunately, depressed as well. LOL.. because i have been trying to get my google adsense account approved, but my request is always denied. I am free from my university for awhile and looking for a job before i start studying again and in the mean while i wanted to earn something online too. but no luck. I kant decide, which method is better.

    Pervisha Khan,
    Lahore , Pakistan

  • Michael…Great Post. I too have Alex Jefferies as my Mentor and am learning alot from his Marketing ways. I think that the one point you made about only giving your readers two options to exit your blog
    1. Click the X
    2. Click one of your affiliate links (or own product link)
    makes perfect sense. Why not help your readers by directing them to valuable and useful information and get rewarded for doing so.

    Look forward to reading more of your insights.

    PS I just started my personal blog and would love some feedback let me know what you think. (Still working on the graphics and layout)

  • Hello Michael, Your posts are very inspirational. I am motivated after reading your posts. They convey such quality content.

  • *still getting used to my new mac:-)

    I cant believe you are dyslexic! Well done for overcoming your limitations in such a big way.

  • Rick Vega

    Hi Michael,

    You story is very inspiring and one I have taken to heart. It’s amazing to me what you have accomplished at such a young age, but I can tell it is because of your passion and commitment to excellence that has caused such great success.

    I wish you nothing but the best and hope we cross paths one day.

    All the best,

    Rick Vega

  • Really a good information for serious bloggers. As I am also working on a project and by reading blogs I will modify the themes and other contents. But not only depend on google advertisement.

    For more I need your help to improve my project.

  • changetheworld12

    In your products like the blue print etc can and will it teach us how to get where you are if followed correctly?