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One Thing Required with Will Lee
48 min2014 JUN 10
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7: Jim Wang Built a $3 million Business on a Topic Knew Little About


When Jim Wang graduated from college and started working as a software developer, he discovered that he needed to learn about personal finance. He needed to learn about 401k plans, saving and investing, insurance, renting and buying homes, and countless others things that most people don't yet know at that age. Jim decided that since he was learning this stuff anyway, he might as well record it on a blog. Thus was born the Bargaineering website.

Since he had a full time day job, Jim worked on the site in his spare time. This was not a business to him (at first), it was just him writing about what he was learning as he did research on various topics. Imagine his surprise when traffic to the website started rapidly climbing!

Seeing an opportunity, Jim then started adding elements to the website that would allow him to monetize (make money off of) this traffic. Before long, Jim was earning significantly more money from his website than from his full time job. The punchline: About five years after starting the blog, Jim sold it to Bankrate, Inc. for $3 million cash plus the potential to earn another $500,000 if certain growth and earnings targets were achieved after the sale. Not bad for writing a blog about a topic he initially knew little about!

Jim talks about:

  • Building a business when you are not yet an expert in that topic
  • How he promoted the blog by reaching out to other bloggers in his niche
  • The blog post that earned him the most money
  • Why readers could connect with him because he did NOT try to pose like an expert
  • His new website and podcast, MicroBlogger, where he teaches what he learned building the Bargaineering business