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Personal Finance Blog Design For Making Sense Of Cents

“Katy and her team were also able to do everything that I asked, and she made everything 1000% better than what I even imagined. I love my design!”

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Project Highlights

  • THEME & PAGE BUILDER – We moved Michelle from the Genesis framework to the Kadence Theme. We also used Kadence Pro Bundle, which includes the element hooks feature. These hooks gave us the ability to truly customize the category pages into elaborate silo pages!
  • DESIGN – We created a completely custom design for this project and built the entire website from scratch.

Meet my client, Michelle Schroeder-Gardner, personal finance blogger

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner is the founder of Making Sense of Cents. Since starting her site in 2011, she has reached over 20 million readers and helped them learn how to earn more, save more, & live more to make good financial decisions! She teaches ways to make extra money, ways to save for retirement planning, how to budget correctly (hello money management), how to use credit cards wisely, and more so they can experience financial freedom.

What I love about Michelle is that she does all the writing and makes her content personable! She leans on her own personal experiences to make personal finance more fun and enjoyable. Plus, she makes sure that every blog post and online course lesson has actionable tips that readers can actually implement. Michelle also interviews people who are experts at their side hustles to get first-hand actionable tips so that others can replicate their success.

Making Sense of Cents has been featured in major publications such as Forbes, CNBC, Time, Reader’s Digest, Oprah, and Business Insider. It’s quite admirable all of the success she’s been able to create over the years with her blog!

I was her student before she was my client …and she didn’t even know it!

When Michelle reached out to me about designing her website, I had a total fan-girl, pinch-me moment because I have followed Michelle for years! In fact, in 2019, I built my first blog and bought her Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course. I wanted to learn from a pro – a subject matter expert and blogger making millions from her site!

Fast forward to 2023, and she reached out to ME, of all people, for a site redesign! Here’s what she had to say:

“A new website is something that I’ve been needing for a long time.”

She had an SEO audit done on her website (because it’s always nice to have outside eyes on it), and they recommended improving her design. She knew she needed one as well because it was starting to feel dated (she’d used the same theme design for over 5 years)!

More specifically, here are some aspects that she wanted to improve:

  • She wanted silo pages that better displayed her different content categories on her website.
  • She wanted to modernize her website and lose the outdated look and feel. For example – she no longer wanted to have a big Pinterest image at the beginning of each blog post. Instead, she wanted horizontal images near the beginning so that it doesn’t intrude on reading the article.
  • She also wanted to make the website easier to navigate for her readers. Before the redesign, they had to scroll through hundreds of blog pages to read her blog posts. It was not easy to find what you are looking for.
  • Finally, she wanted her homepage to look more business-like than a personal blog! She’d built up all of this authority over the past 12 years ago, but her old website didn’t reflect that.

Why she chose to work with me and my team 

“I asked around in my niche, and a few bloggers recommended Katy. My go-to tech person also highly recommended Katy (and no one else!), so I knew she was the one for me! I pretty much do whatever Grayson says, and he recommended Katy, so it was a done deal, haha! I also looked at her portfolio and really liked the other designs that she has done over the years.”

About The Design

  • CLIENTS’ FIRST APPROACH – We wanted to put her target audience at the forefront of our design choices! When her ideal clients visit the new Making Sense of Cents site, we want them to feel like they can trust Making Sense of Cents and feel confident and hopeful that they can improve their finances and create healthy financial habits after engaging with the site.
  • DESIGN AESTHETIC – Michelle really wanted to create a minimal and timeless blog design with a splash of color (like pastel green, light tan, and pastel orange). She knew the redesign would be a success if the new financial blog design gave off a personable yet informative and professional vibe.
  • SHOWCASE CONTENT – While Michelle is the sole writer for this website and could be considered a personal brand, she wanted her budgeting, saving, investing, and money-making content to be the star of the show, not her face.

I asked Michelle what she loved most about the website: 

“I love everything about my new website! I love the colors, the silo/category pages, and how there is so much more detail on various pages than there ever was before.

It’s so much easier to navigate now. Plus, I think the redesign will really help with SEO as well. There was pretty much no organization before, and now it’s super well organized! Also, Katy made really great pages, such as my free blogging course landing page, Instagram link, and more, and those are all so nice to have. It’s crazy how much I was missing out on with my old site design before.”

Michelle’s favorite parts about working together:

  • “I looked really deep at every detail of my website to see how I could improve it. Katy’s steps in the very beginning helped me think of the different ways that I could improve my website.”
  • “Katy was so responsive and had an answer for all of my questions. I know that I definitely was not the easiest person to work with, and I had so many ideas running through my head at all times. It was nice that she never seemed sick of me, haha! “
  • “She was also able to do everything that I asked, and she made everything 1000% better than what I even imagined. I love my design!”
  • “I was really surprised by how organized the whole process was. I loved the project management platform that she used in order to keep everything straightforward and organized, as there were so many different things going on. It was nice to know exactly where we were in the process the whole time.”
  • “I can’t believe my website looked the way it did before. It was so dated! I feel much better now about my design and whole blogging business.”

Start Your Website Design Project Today!

If you are a blogger like Michelle, and your website needs a total makeover, inquire with me and my team today! You deserve to start building a website that will work as hard as you do and even work when you’re not working.

Here’s what Michelle had to say, “The website design service Katy and her team provided was such a great value! I think she should charge more. My design is exactly what I wanted and more – I love what Katy and her team built for me. If you’re on the fence about starting your project with Katy – just do it! You won’t regret it and she will be able to put what you want into reality.”

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