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  • Written By
    Christian Simmons

    Christian Simmons

    Financial Writer and Certified Educator in Personal Finance

    Christian Simmons is a financial writer who has worked professionally as a journalist since 2016. As an active member of the Association for Financial Counseling & Planning (AFCPE), Christian prides himself on his ability to break down complex financial topics in ways that Annuity.org readers can easily understand.

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  • Edited By
    Lamia Chowdhury
    Lamia Chowdhury

    Lamia Chowdhury

    Financial Editor

    Lamia Chowdhury is a financial editor at Annuity.org. Lamia carries an extensive skillset in the content marketing field, and her work as a copywriter spans industries as diverse as finance, health care, travel and restaurants.

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  • Updated: August 14, 2023
  • 4 min read time
  • This page features 1 Cited Research Article
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How to Cite Annuity.org's Article

APA Simmons, C. (2023, August 14). An Online Success Story: How a Blog That Started as a Side Hustle Morphed Into a Six-Figure Business. Annuity.org. Retrieved May 28, 2024, from https://dev.annuity.org/personal-takes/an-online-success-story-how-a-blog-that-started-as-a-side-hustle-morphed-into-a-six-figure-business/

MLA Simmons, Christian. "An Online Success Story: How a Blog That Started as a Side Hustle Morphed Into a Six-Figure Business." Annuity.org, 14 Aug 2023, https://dev.annuity.org/personal-takes/an-online-success-story-how-a-blog-that-started-as-a-side-hustle-morphed-into-a-six-figure-business/.

Chicago Simmons, Christian. "An Online Success Story: How a Blog That Started as a Side Hustle Morphed Into a Six-Figure Business." Annuity.org. Last modified August 14, 2023. https://dev.annuity.org/personal-takes/an-online-success-story-how-a-blog-that-started-as-a-side-hustle-morphed-into-a-six-figure-business/.


Finding Passion in an Online Business

When Kelan Kline first entered the workforce, his life was off to a storybook start. He had gone to college and married Brittany, his high school sweetheart, and both had successfully started the careers they thought they were destined for.

But Kline’s time in law enforcement was not what he had hoped for.

The Interviewee

Kelan Kline Kelan Kline
Built Blog into a Six-Figure Business

“I really didn’t like my job in law enforcement after the first couple years. It really kind of led me into a deep depression,” he said. “I was at this point where I was bouncing around jobs, trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life.”

On top of feeling unhappy in his career, Kline had a second major problem: student loans. The couple was struggling to keep up with their debt and decided that looking into a side hustle could be a way to alleviate the burden – something that could bring in an extra few hundred bucks a month.

Three years later, the “side hustle” they settled on had morphed into a six-figure online business.

The Klines started The Savvy Couple, an online blog covering personal finance and money management. 

While Kline hadn’t been able to find fulfillment in his career in law enforcement, he found himself deeply invested in the success of his new blog. Before long, it became clear that running an online business could be far more than a side hustle.

“The moment we made our first $50, I went to my wife Brittany and said ‘Hey I’d like to quit my job and do this full-time,’” Kline said. “It was definitely scary. But I was at the point where it was definitely the best option. Going back to another nine-to-five was not an option.” 

It was a stressful decision to make, but one that paid off in a big way. The blog grew rapidly as Kelan dedicated himself to managing the business and the couple squeezed in time whenever possible to work on it.

Just two years later, Brittany was ready to leave behind her teaching career to go all in on the business as well. But unlike the moment when Kelan made the risky move to devote all of his time to a business with a total profit of $50, this decision was close to a no-brainer.

“The month before she turned in her resignation, we made more money from the blog than she made the entire year,” Kline said.

Since launching in 2016, The Savvy Couple has grown into a full-on, full-time business that generates six figures in revenue year after year. 

It may not have been the career Kline envisioned for himself when he first graduated college, but it has certainly been the right one.

“It was scary, but it was also what drove me and what kept a fire in me to make it happen,” Kline said. “I just had confidence in myself that I could do it.”

Online Businesses Offer a New Path to Financial Success 

The Kline’s are just one example of how growing an online business has become more feasible than ever before. What was barely a business model 20 years ago is so successful today that it allowed both of the Kline’s to quit their jobs within just a few years.

As the 21st century progresses, more and more of the economy is going digital. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 15% of all retail sales were made online in the first quarter of 2023, with that number expected to only go up in the coming years.

Thanks to easy-to-use services and software, the ability to build blogs and online stores is more accessible than ever before.

Those who are determined (and have the time to commit to it) can find new career and business opportunities through blogging or setting up websites that focus on their passions.

“The best thing you can do when you make that decision that you do want to try to run an online business is you dive headfirst in,” Kline said. “You give it all you’ve got and you take action.”

While blogs have helped to make the idea of starting a business much more accessible, it still takes plenty of work. Kelan and Brittany spent every bit of spare time they had on their blog in the early days, fitting it in before or after work, and even on the weekends.

But it can pay off for those who are committed.

“Figure out your ‘why’ in life,” Kline said. “I think it’s important to design your lifestyle first and then design the business to be a vehicle to get you to the lifestyle you want.”

Editor Malori Malone contributed to this article.

Thoughts and opinions expressed in these stories are strictly anecdotal and should not be taken as financial advice. Views of the interviewee do not necessarily reflect those of the author, editor or Annuity.org.
Last Modified: August 14, 2023

1 Cited Research Article

  1. U.S. Census Bureau. (2023, May 18). Quarterly Retail E-Commerce Sales. Retrieved from https://www.census.gov/retail/mrts/www/data/pdf/ec_current.pdf