Freefincal turns four!

Published: May 25, 2016 at 7:33 am

Last Updated on

Freefincal was born this week four years ago! A post to say ‘thank you’ to all friends, well-wishers and readers who have keep it alive.

The site which was started as a repository for Excel calculators is constantly evolving into a portal that tries to understand investor behaviour and requirements. This is possible only because of a supportive community. Without which it would have died a silent death. Read more: journey so far.

Freefincal is not about financial literacy: Those two words – financial literacy – get on my nerves. It is so holier than thou and condescending. No, freefincal has nothing to do with financial literacy. Circumstances have urged me to treat blogging and making Excel sheets as a regimen to steer clear of negative thinking and depression. Constant and incisive feedback from users has helped sustain this regimen.

From crowd funding to hosting ads: Middle of last year, I made an appeal for financial support and the response was fantastic. However, the site traffic grew at a faster pace than I anticipated. Therefore, I had to move to a better hosting plan. Factoring in other costs like plugins and analytics, a more constant stream of income was necessary and I was forced to turn on ads. Something that I am ashamed of as I have always spoken against them.

I cringe each time I look at them but recognise that they are a necessary evil. Readers have been most tolerant of this decision. Rest assured, freefincal is a non-profit operation. So the ad revenue will only be used for the growth of the blog.

Brand Equity: It is a matter of pride that  freefincal has some brand equity.


Source: Similarweb

The 38% direct traffic is quite healthy and more importantly greater than the search (Google) traffic. This is because of the nature of the content here. People are searching for “best mutual funds 2016” and not “how to select a mutual fund” 🙂

It is better to have a direct audience as ‘repeat customers’ than fleeting visitors via Google (all other search engines amount next to nothing!)

Join our 1500+ Facebook Group on Portfolio Management! Losing sleep over the market crash? Don't! You can now reduce fear, doubt and uncertainty while investing for your financial goals! Sign up for our lectures on goal-based portfolio management and join our exclusive Facebook Community. The 1st lecture is free! Did you miss out on the lockdown discount? You can still avail it! Follow instructions in the above link!

Facebook group Asan Ideas for Wealth (AIFW): I find it quite amusing many think that just because I am an active member at AIFW, it is one of the major freefincal traffic sources. I enjoy being part of that community and have many friends there.

If I do it just to get the ~ 6% traffic from FB (not just AIFW), then I suffer from innumeracy. I do it because the best way to learn is to repeatedly display our ignorance sans shame. As much as I am the chief marketeer of AIFW, I am also its chief critic.

Investor Workshops: From Nov. 2014 to Nov. 2015, several workshops were held around the country with the help of many friends. For the last four events, I was joined by AIFW admin and one of the most selfless teachers of personal finance, Ashal Jauhari.

Because of my health and Ashal’s schedule, we have hit the pause button on the workshops. I hope to revive them as discussion meetings shortly.

Campaign against conflict of interest: I have spoken against conflict of interest, promoted the use of direct mutual funds and fee-only SEBI registered financial planners. This has earned me sobriquets like DIY evangelist and DIY activist.

If freefincal has played a role increasing awareness about conflict of interest, fee-only financial advisory and direct mutual funds, then I am happy with such titles. I have lost friendships due to this, but a  man’s got to do what a man’s got to do.

Future Plans: Some interesting developments are on the cards. Do not wish to jinx them. Do watch this space.

Thank you for your support.

Do share if you found this useful
Join our 1500+ Facebook Group on Portfolio Management! Losing sleep over the market crash? Don't! You can now reduce fear, doubt and uncertainty while investing for your financial goals! Sign up for our lectures on goal-based portfolio management and join our exclusive Facebook Community. The 1st lecture is free! Did you miss out on the lockdown discount? You can still avail it! Follow instructions in the above link!

Want to check if the market is overvalued or undervalued? Use our market valuation tool (will work with any index!)

About the Author

Pattabiraman editor freefincalM. Pattabiraman(PhD) is the founder, managing editor and primary author of freefincal. He is an associate professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. since Aug 2006. Connect with him via Twitter or Linkedin Pattabiraman has co-authored two print-books, You can be rich too with goal-based investing (CNBC TV18) and Gamechanger and seven other free e-books on various topics of money management. He is a patron and co-founder of “Fee-only India” an organisation to promote unbiased, commission-free investment advice.
He conducts free money management sessions for corporates and associations on the basis of money management. Previous engagements include World Bank, RBI, BHEL, Asian Paints, Cognizant, Madras Atomic Power Station, Honeywell, Tamil Nadu Investors Association. For speaking engagements write to pattu [at] freefincal [dot] com

About freefincal & its content policy

Freefincal is a News Media Organization dedicated to providing original analysis, reports, reviews and insights on developments in mutual funds, stocks, investing, retirement and personal finance. We do so without conflict of interest and bias. We operate in a non-profit manner. All revenue is used only for expenses and for the future growth of the site. Follow us on Google News
Freefincal serves more than one million readers a year (2.5 million page views) with articles based only on factual information and detailed analysis by its authors. All statements made will be verified from credible and knowledgeable sources before publication.Freefincal does not publish any kind of paid articles, promotions or PR, satire or opinions without data. All opinions presented will only be inferences backed by verifiable, reproducible evidence/data. Contact information: letters {at} freefincal {dot} com (sponsored posts or paid collaborations will not be entertained)

Connect with us on social media

Our Publications

You Can Be Rich Too with Goal-Based Investing

You can be rich too with goal based investingThis book is meant to help you ask the right questions, seek the right answers and since it comes with nine online calculators, you can also create custom solutions for your lifestyle! Get it now. It is also available in Kindle format.

Gamechanger: Forget Startups, Join Corporate & Still Live the Rich Life You Want

Gamechanger: Forget Start-ups, Join Corporate and Still Live the Rich Life you wantThis book is meant for young earners to get their basics right from day one! It will also help you travel to exotic places at low cost! Get it or gift it to a young earner

Your Ultimate Guide to Travel


This is a deep dive analysis into vacation planning, finding cheap flights, budget accommodation, what to do when traveling, how traveling slowly is better financially and psychologically with links to the web pages and hand-holding at every step. Get the pdf for Rs 199 (instant download) 

Free Apps for your Android Phone

Comment Policy

Your thoughts are the driving force behind our work. We welcome criticism and differing opinions.Please do not include hyperlinks or email ids in the comment body. Such comments will be moderated and I reserve the right to delete the entire comment or remove the links before approving them.


  1. I was one of the “fleeting visitors” via google but after strolling through the blog for a couple of days, i was hooked!

    What struck me seeing all the data content and excel charts was that you would have to learn a lot of excel skills to give shape to all your ideas. Mastering excel is a whole different journey on its own!

  2. Factoring in other costs like plugins and analytics, a more constant stream of income was necessary and I was forced to turn on ads. Something that I am ashamed of as I have always spoken against them.

    I cringe each time I look at them but recognise that they are a necessary evil.

    Resp Sir
    No reasons to be apologetic as above.
    Your readers are definitely mature to appreciate your view point.
    To sustain any activity,it has to be funded.
    Always attitude,aptitude & approach matters when ultimate outcome matters.

  3. Congratulations and all the best. I casually strolled into your website. I am starting to like it now… for its simpleness and openness.

    Wishing you more successful years.

  4. There are finance blogs and websites and then there is freefincal , Your Blog has completely changed the way I look at my finance.

    Thank You Pattu Sir and all our members for making this happen.

    Wishing You All Success

  5. Dear Pattu,

    You have been an inspiration for likes of us and freefincal has helped so many of my friends to plan for their future. Congratulations in completing 4 years and wish you and freefincal many more productive years!!

  6. Congratulations and all the very best.
    Your blog has provided me valuable inputs on Personal Finance- the key differentiating factor being -porting live data from other sites like Money control and Value Research -to provide more meaningful learning.

    Please continue your journey and don’t feel ashamed or reserved to provide for revenue generation. Ultimately there is no free lunch.

  7. Thank you for all the insightful articles and calculators. It has been a source of immense knowledge. Please keep up the good work.

  8. Dear Pattu,

    Congratulations on completing four successful years.

    I came your blog through Google search for an Excel MF tracker. I am thankful for doing that search four years back as it began my financial literacy journey. Reading freefincal led to Subra and AIFW and a wonderful group of like minded friends such as Ashal, Sundaramji and Melvin to name a few.

    Thank you for making this happen and wishing you all the success!


  10. All the best to FreeFinCal ……

    Real good work to promote Fee only planning and DIY financial practices

  11. Congrats and keep going. You are indeed for the people and by the people and to the people to cherish their wealth and effective handling of personal finance. Stay blessed always Prof.Pattu

  12. I have to admit, despite all the sarcasm and restrictive nature (including the comments), your blog has added lot of value to financial literacy, if one knows how to really read through it. I have benefited immensely, and has always been enamored by impartial advice. Please keep doing what you do best!

  13. congratulations and best wishes for completing 4 years. only yesterday i was telling my son about your blog, which has come out of your need DIY of your investment and your knowledge about Excel and it helped us much. I think, myself associated in reading your blog for many years, as you provided volume of tools , which could not be formed in just 4 years! thank you, professor!
    Anyway, whether the financial support scheme is in place now?

  14. Congrats Pattu, your blog is very helpful and informative.
    Various Calculators are excellent. Lot of us have benefited.
    Keep up the good work.


  15. Congratulations for the milestone. Thanks for your efforts to motivate people to “DIY” and sharing the knowledge/ best practices.

  16. Hi
    You been doing great service to people to take informed decision through your tools and knowledge. Thank you! Wish you all the best for your future plan

  17. Pattu Sir, Congratulations on such a concrete milestone! And ALL THE BEST for future plans!
    I believe, next year it would be a GRAND celebration with many new innovative developments! 🙂

  18. Sir,
    I am a great fan of your blog.Saw your blog by chance 6 months back and ever since never I miss a day without your analysis and perspectives. Your team’s relentless efforts towards open source excel and google docs are the best that I have ever seen so far.Your unbiased views made me rectify a lot of financial blunders that I have committed though am just 28..Wish many more awesome years ahead!!!

  19. Congrats Pattu Sir… One request .. pl take care of your health also … for years to come you & your team will be remembered for your RATIONAL advice by simplified language of personal finance. .. God bless You..

  20. I have completed 1 year of following your blog as well and iam really happy with the way my financial planning is progressing, and all the credit goes to you sir. Thanks alot for your help.


  21. Been reading a lot of your posts and thank you so much for all your effort. I have never seen any website in any category providing this level of details and that too for free. Really really thankful and keep rocking!!


  22. Pattu Sir,
    Keep creating milestones in your own journey and you make others to follow you by your blogs.
    I was clueless about financial matters.I read one of your blog about two years back .I am still wondering about the your creations of so many calculators.

  23. Dear Pattu Sir,
    “congratulations” would be too formal, its perhaps “indigenous work for helping society to upgrade and educate themselves in the world of personal finance” .. thanks a lot …
    i literally hooked up when first time i eventually touched down your article in one of google search, since then never missed any…..
    The way you simplify the topics, numerous “easy to use” excel and most importantly you “know” exactly what exactly we “dont know”….
    Lastly, Get well soon Sir…

  24. Dear Sir
    I have become regular to your blog, was introduced to it by my brother.
    Enjoy your posts and make it a point to read all of them.

    Wishing you many many years of this endevour

  25. You are awesome!
    Completely agree wth Mr. Rajnikant .
    ….by the way ,I am also one of the fleeting customer turned hooked visitor.

  26. dear pattu sir
    congrats and thank you for your time and effort u are putting to this blog. its been helping a lots of people. keep walking!!!! keep blogging.!!!!
    dr teny

Comments are closed.