Do you remember we began with one question as to what is the objective of your blogging. What you can accomplish with a successful blog? In this article we will explore how can you make money blogging.
Also remember that before expecting any earning from your blog you must be honest in asking if you have built a loyal audience for your blog articles.
If you want to monetize a blog, your learning will be for NOTHING without the following:
1 – A valuable niche
A lawn maintenance site will NOT be as lucrative as a book review site. (Who buys lawn stuff online? Nobody.)
The blogging about blogging niche (I.e. what I’m doing right this second) is a VERY lucrative one, as people are willing to pay for info products to help them grow their blogs.
Do people buy stuff online in your niche?
2 – Amazing content
In order to make decent money from your blog, you’re going to HAVE to produce great content that matters to people. Period.
GROWING an audience depends on readers coming back for more. People don’t return to your site after they see crappy content.
3 – A loyal community, following, and fans
Publishing products (or even ads) into a void obviously won’t monetize your blog.
You’ll need a following centered around your email list, as well as various social media platforms.
Psst! I also have a video walk-through of this post
4 – Engagement!
More important than even website traffic….is engagement. Clicking, commenting, replying to emails, etc.
You want followers to not only glance at your site periodically…but be INVOLVED in your content, clicking affiliate links and purchasing ebooks because they’ve been around you long enough to TRUST your recommendations.
1. Ads monetization: Offer advertising on your blog to make money
- Pros – Fairly passive revenue. Higher traffic = more revenue
- Cons – low traffic = low revenue. (VERY low revenue)
- Difficulty – 1/10 Just connect to a network and install on your blog!
- Resources – Here’s how to add Adsense to your site. At 50kish views a month, go to Mediavine!
This is definitely the most known way to make money with a blog. It’s also starting to become the least common way. You can sell direct advertising spots on your blog or you can sign up with a company like Google AdSense or Media.net. Either way, you won’t see a whole lot of money from ads until you have a serious number of views. You can make money with ads by how many people see your ads (CPI – Cost Per Impression) or from how many people click on the ads (PPC – Pay Per Click) or from how many people follow the link/ad and buy/sign up for the product or service (CPA – Cost Per Action).
Here’s how display ads work:
- You apply to an ad network.
- They review your site, check your traffic, etc.
- Once approved, you’ll be able to choose sections of your site to place ads (in the content, in the footer, in the sidebar, etc)
- That’s it. You’re done. You collect checks.
Don’t show display ads on your site until your traffic is sufficient to make real money. At that point, we recommend Mediavine!
They pay bloggers MORE money, straight up.
Here are a few more ad networks:
2. Affiliate marketing: Earn income through product recommendations
Affiliate marketing is the single most popular way to make money from a blog, for 3 reasons:
- You don’t have to create the products. Somebody else took care of the hard part!
- You have control over what you advertise so you can recommend only products that are RELEVANT to your readers.
- It’s FAR more profitable than ads
How do I get started with affiliate marketing?
The first step is applying to affiliate programs for products you want to promote. Once accepted, you will grab a “special” or “unique” URL code that you can use to link to their product. When visitors click through your special link and buy the product, YOU EARN MONEY.
BY THE WAY….
TOOOOO many beginners take a “passive” approach to promoting affiliate links–rather than an “active” approach.
Amazon Associates Affiliate Program
- Pros – easy to get started, you can promote anything on Amazon, you’ll get commissions on ANY product they buy….not just the one you promoted
- Cons – Doesn’t pay a ton (Usually 2-4% of sales)
- Difficulty – 1/10
- Resources – Here’s the link to get started and sign up.
This is mandatory for any aspiring affiliate marketer, as EVERYBODY has something to buy on Amazon. It’s great for all niches!
FAQ: How does it work? When somebody clicks through your Amazon affiliate link, they get a “cookie” stored in their browser (Google Chrome, etc)…and if they purchase any product (read that again…ANY product, not just what you linked them to) within the next 24 hours, you get paid a percentage of that!)
Sign up here for an affiliate account ASAP.
This is the most accessible affiliate program out there, and people TRUST buying on Amazon. It’s a fantastic way to promote products and earn extra money.
- Pros – Access to a TON more products not on Amazon. Ease of access.
- Cons – Some networks require a strict application, minimum website visits per month, etc.
- Difficulty – 2/10
- Resources – Shareasale, Clickbank, Commission Junction. Those are the biggest
The idea is the same as Amazon above, but instead of your links leading to an Amazon page, they will lead to a specific company or product.
These networks contain THOUSANDS of different products and companies to choose from!
Info Product Affiliate Programs (I.e. other creator’s products)
- Pros – Usually pay really well
- Cons – You’ll need to work 1-on-1 with the product owners, or perhaps even have BOUGHT their product
- Difficulty – 3/10
- Resources – Each individual program,
If you’re a new blogger, you can’t just start applying to other bloggers’ products right away. Becoming affiliates for other bloggers’ products happens over time as a natural result of building blogging relationships.
However, they pay well. Typically 25%-40%. That’s over $200 PER REFERRAL for premium products like Blogger U and Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. This way is the most followed way to make money blogging.
3. Monetize from Blogging Info Products
Affiliate marketing = THEIR products and high profit margins.
Your digital products = YOUR high profit margins.
Some of this might be tough while you’re learning how to monetize a blog, and rightfully so: Creating your own products is advanced stuff.
Affiliate marketing means somebody else did the hard work of creating, designing, and launching products. Now it’s YOUR turn to do all that work.
HOWEVER, if you’re looking to grow a $100,000+ online business, it’s highly likely you’ll be leveraging your own products.
Good news though: Monetizing your website with your products doesn’t have to take months. You CAN make money from very simple but valuable products.
With HIGH profit margins too
Below are the BEST ways to make money from your blog without going back for an MBA or product design degree.
- Pros – Will cost you nothing to deliver, and you can generally re-use content and ideas you’ve already written
- Cons – Not big ticket items, are surprisingly difficult to sell. Some learning curve required.
- Difficulty – 7/10
- Resources – Canva for designing ebook covers. This article on how to CREATE and format the ebooks. This guide to publishing via Kindle.
Ebook are just like regular books, except that ANYBODY can create and publish them…and they’re read via computer.
FAQ: What’s the best format for selling an ebook? The simplest way is to write via MS Word or a Google Doc, and export to PDF. BAM. Ebook! However, you can also publish to be read on people’s devices, such as Kindle. Then you can sell your ebook on Amazon!
If you’ve been blogging for a while (and have built up a nice body of posts), you can also pull from content you’ve already written to fill out your ebook.
Pro Tip: Wondering what you could write that will actually SELL and make money? If you have access to your blog metrics, (which you should) you can sort all your blog posts by ‘most viewed’…and that will tell you WHICH pieces of content resonate the most with your readers. Create paid products based on THOSE topics!
Ebooks easy enough, especially is you’re utilizing free templates…but my guess is you’ll find them DIFFICULT to sell. Especially for decent money. (Have YOU ever paid more than $10 for an ebook? Seems rare).
The ebook would have to be EXTREMELY tasty and valuable. And even then, it’s a low ticket item compared to how much time you spend creating it.
If you want to teach people via a paid product, online courses are far more appropriate (and profitable) than ebooks.
So speaking of which, let’s learn how to monetize a blog via courses!
- Pros – HUGE profit potential. Tons of flexibility with format and content
- Cons – Takes a ton of work. Still requires marketing and sales skills 🙂
- Difficulty – 8/10
- Resources – BlogR for creating and hosting course content. See resources below for tips on getting started.
The 8/10 difficulty rating is the hardest and most intimidating for our uber ‘how to monetize a blog’ list. However, creating your own online course is STILL the highest ROI and most profitable website monetization strategy.
This is for three reasons:
- You can create a course once and sell it for years to come, making the income fairly passive…apart from the initial work of creating.
- You can price your courses anywhere from $0 (used to get leads, not dollars) to literally thousands.
- It’s also a preferred format for teaching people things, so your readers will approve!
4. Monetize with Blogging Services
This might be a little controversial…as you technically WON’T be monetizing YOUR blog…but rather making money from other people’s websites, etc.
(Although I’d argue it’s still very much utilizing blogging skills, and you wouldn’t be able to get these profitable freelance gigs WITHOUT a blog of your own!)
Important: Personally, I recommend freelancing 1,000% percent.
Freelancing is the fastest way to make money blogging. Period. In terms of overall revenues, no other blog monetization method comes close in the *short-term.*
The reason? For almost all other ways to make money…you need to spend time building traffic and cultivating a following! (who will pay you money).
For freelancing, you need only match up your skills with other bloggers willing to pay you to perform them…of which there are plenty.
- Pros – There is no shortage of people who NEED help with their own blogs and businesses! QUICK money making potential
- Cons – Still requires skills and outreach…and you won’t be building your own brand (or will you?)
- Difficulty – 4/10
- Resources – Twitter for building connections (more below), blogging.
Here’s how to make money in freelance blogging and writing:
1 – Figure out what you’re good at
What skills do you have, or are really keen on improving on? You DON’T need world-class freelancing skills in order to make some money! You just need to find 1 or 2 skills you enjoy working hard at and learning about.
Can you run Facebook Ads? Make pretty Pinterest images? Organize schedules and manage inboxes as a VA? Can you write more good? If yes, believe me you can make money blogging.
All of us have something to offer other bloggers, it’s just a process of finding what that is and matching it with what other people need.
Personally, I’m a freelance writer. It pays well and allows me to build backlinks to my own blog!
2 – FIND the people willing to pay you for your services
First, here’s a great post for finding freelance writing gigs. You’ll see several “marketplaces” for people looking for freelance bloggers!
However, those can be quite competitive, as can HUGE freelance sites like Upwork, etc. You won’t make much blogging money from these.
Rather…focus on this:
3 – Pitch them and build relationships
- Bad = cold emailing other bloggers and asking if they need help.
- Good = building real relationships with other bloggers and asking if they need help
Though it’ll initially take longer, focusing on building REAL friendships in your communities WILL make money blogging over the long run, and this could very well mean freelancing income as well.
Pro Tip: When pitching for freelance work, always ask for things HONESTLY and transparently. Furthermore, asking for referrals is far more powerful than asking for. things directly! Also, send follow-up emails and be persistent.
Blog coaching and consulting
- Pros – Great money for little actual direct work
- Cons – Requires authority, takes time, can be stressful
- Difficulty – 4/10
- Resources – Here’s a good resource on how to start a coaching business
Whether you blog about gardening, the ketogenic diet, or personal finance…there will always be individuals who want 1-on-1 help, and are willing to pay for it!
However, you can’t just start a blog one day and hope to make money coaching the next. Why should people trust you? You need to build up that “authority” first.
You may not want to hear it, but I don’t think anybody should start coaching their readers until they’re being asked to. If you really have to sell it, you’re not ready yet anyway.
However, it couldn’t hurt to create a separate page on your blog where readers could browse through your different service offerings. A “coaching” or “hire me” page could one day make money blogging.
5. Conclusion - Can you really make money blogging?
If you’re really looking to make money blogging, you should know that it takes WORK.
There IS no get rich quick option, nor is there any one “best” way to monetize a blog. You’ll have to figure some things out for yourself!
In fact, the ACTUAL best blog monetization strategy is to constantly try different things out until you find what works best for YOU. Then double and triple down on that.
So what will it be for you?
Leave me a comment below and share what strategy has helped you make money blogging! If you’re a new blogger, what are you most excited to try?