For many bloggers, running a blog is a matter of passion and for some, it is a reliable source of income.
Being able to share knowledge with the world and provide a platform to enthusiasts worldwide is in itself an amazing feat. Moreover, people use these blogs for SEO benefits, enhancing online presence, and promoting brands.
Having said that, over time even the most passionate bloggers have learned that devotion and spirit do not help you pay rent. Running and maintaining a blog is a pretty hectic and time-consuming job. You have to be on top of your game to produce fresh and interesting content regularly. This is a serious commitment to the art of blogging but unfortunately most of the time it’s unpaid.
So the big question is, “can you earn a good income from your blog?” The answer is a definite “Yes”. But it takes a lot of work and dedication. Although there are several avenues for bloggers if they want to earn money from their blogs. The one tried and tested method is to monetize your blog. No matter if you are running a blog for a digital marketing agency or yourself. The important part is to get the right amount of money you deserve for your writing.
So let’s deep dive into the details of monetizing a blog and what is the right way to do it.
- What do you Need to Monetize your Blog?
- When Should You Start to Monetize Your Blog?
- Proven Ways to Monetize your Blog
- Final Thoughts
- Frequently Asked Questions – Blog Monetization
What do you Need to Monetize your Blog?
Before we discuss how to monetize your blog, let’s focus on the prerequisites. What are the necessities for monetizing a blog?
1) A valuable Niche
There is no denying the fact that the niche of your blog is one of the most crucial factors. Having a valuable niche allows you to cash on the worth of your audience. Working in a niche with demand and that appeals to a large chunk of the monetization process. Blogging niches such as food, travel, fashion, and lifestyle are amongst the most common. Although you will face some fierce competition in these categories. But as they say “the more the merrier”.
2) Amazing Content
By far we have discussed how important your niche is. The next important factor is the content. Some might argue that it is the most critical aspect of your blog. No matter how valuable your niche is. If you fail to produce quality content for your readers you will fail. There is a reason that the world agrees that “Content is King”. The only difference between you and your competitors will be the quality of your content.
3) A Loyal Community of Followers
They say that loyalty can’t be bought. Indeed it is true. Even a small number of loyal followers can make a huge difference in the grand scheme. These loyal fans are not only your most reliable customers but also the biggest endorsement of your blog. They can help you promote your positive image to the root level of the community.
Most businesses backslide because they fail to engage their audience. We live in a world where people are influenced by their ideals. If you think that producing great content is enough then you are fatally mistaken. The best way is to engage and communicate with your customers at every level. You can use social media, emails, and other mediums to communicate with them. Once you know what they want, you can provide them with exactly that.
When Should You Start to Monetize Your Blog?
To be honest there is no definitive answer to this question. Different factors are depending on your blog. There’s no concrete figure for how much traffic or how many customers in your email list there are. Because it all relies on what you are selling and you are selling it. However, make sure that you have straightened out these two aspects right away.
- Have Steady traffic: You don’t require huge numbers of traffic as long as you have steady traffic regularly. If you have hundreds of visitors every month that indicates you are on the right track.
- Expand your email List: Again don’t need to go too big. As long as you have a reasonable number of people on your list you will be fine.
Though these two factors matter, monetization is all about numbers. How much do you want to earn and what is the best way to do that?
For example; if you want to make $4000 from your blog, you have plenty of choices to achieve that very goal.
- You can sell a $200 course to 20 people
- You can sell a $400 course to 10 people
- You can charge $4000 from a client for your services
Monetization is mathematics rather than magic.
Proven Ways to Monetize your Blog
Now that the introduction is out of the way, let’s get to our main topic. Here are some of the proven ways to monetize your blog.
1. Monetize your blog with Blog Ads
Advertising is usually the first thing that comes to mind when you think of gaining profit from your blog. It is the most common easy method to monetize your blog. These ads work quite well if you have a lot of visitors on your blog. You earn every time someone visits your website and sees or clicks the ad on the website.
So high traffic equals more revenue and low traffic means less revenue.
It is also quite simple to use. Just connect to the desired network and connect to your blog.
Here are some of the most common Ad networks.
- Google Adsense
1.1 Google Adsense
Google Adsense is one of the most popular and widely used ad networks. With Google Adsense, you can easily sell your website’s ad space for advertisements to get paid.
Once you sign up for a Google Adsense account you can start the process. The Google team will review your application. Once approved you will be given your ode. This code is used to display ads on your website. Since Google Adsense is the most widely used ad network you can easily find all the information you want before you jump into signing up for an ad account.
1.2 Native Ads
Native ads are the ads that are inserted right into your content. As these ads are placed between the content, they feel like a part of the content rather than ads. According to law, you are obliged to label these as ads. Since they are designed with the sole purpose of blending in the content. It is really hard to separate them as ads at first glance.
1.3 Custom ads with affiliate links
If you value your readers then affiliate marketing is the best choice for you. If you think your product is the perfect fit for your readers, then you can’t go wrong with affiliate marketing. You have complete autonomy over what you advertise on your website. This way you can easily put up ads that will resonate with your audience.
1.4 Sell Ad Space Directly
While Ad networks such as Google Adsense are easy to set up and use, the amount you will earn is limited. If you want to go all-in, you might want to sell your ad space directly.
This way you can set the price as you please. You know what you want and what is your worth. You can Charge a flat upfront payment for an ad rather than for small revenue on each click or visit.
2. Monetize your blog with Affiliate Marketing
When it comes to making money from your blog, affiliate marketing is at the very top. This is the best method for quite a few reasons:
- Someone else will create the products which is the hardest part.
- You have complete control over what to advertise and what to not.
- You can advertise products that are relevant to your niche and audience.
- It generates far more revenue than ads.
How to Start Affiliate Marketing?
First, you need to apply for any affiliate marketing program for the products you want to promote. Once accepted, you will get a special “URL” to use to link to the product. When a visitor clicks on that specific URL and buys your product you will earn money.
It has been observed that having an active approach to affiliate marketing produces better results as compared to a passive approach.
2.1 Amazon Associates Affiliate Program
Amazon is without a doubt the biggest eCommerce platform in the world. For any aspiring affiliate marketer, the Amazon Affiliate program is almost mandatory. Amazon brought in a revenue of $125.6 Billion in 2020. This indicates that there is no marketplace better than Amazon.
The Amazon Affiliate program is quite easy to use. You can not only get profit on products you promote but also on every product someone buys. The only drawback is that they usually pay 2-4% of sales.
2.2 Affiliate Networks
The process is the same as Amazon. The difference is that instead of linking to Amazon your link will direct users to a specific company or product.
You can choose from hundreds and thousands of products and companies to promote.
You get access to more products, even the ones not available on Amazon. Another important aspect to keep in mind is that you will have to apply separately for each affiliate program.
2.3 Single Program Affiliate Programs
Some companies or products prefer to not be a part of any affiliate program. Instead, they use an affiliate program hosted separately.
For example; you might have seen a “refer a friend” type of campaign. You will get an amount of free cash or some kind of free product after referring to friends.
Though this type of affiliate program offers more profit the only drawback is that you have to keep complete tabs on all your dashboards.
3. Monetize your blog from Digital Products (Info Products)
This is a step up from affiliate marketing. In affiliate marketing, it’s their product and hence their profit. In the case of digital products, it’s your products and your profit to the fullest.
This is an advanced step, for starters, it is recommended to stick with affiliate marketing. With affiliate marketing, you don’t have to create, design, and launch the product. Which is the hardest part of the process. With your digital products, you will have to carry out the hard part too.
It doesn’t have to take months to monetize your website with your products. You can make a profit with low-cost but high-value products.
These are some of the best ways to make money from your blog.
3.1 Sell Online Courses
Without a doubt, having an online course is still considered the highest ROI and most revenue-generating monetization strategy. You have complete flexibility with the format and content you produce.
Most well-established bloggers in India or around the world use this method to monetize their blogs and videos. It does require a lot of work and marketing skills to yield high profits. This is the best method for gaining profit because:
- Once you create an online course you can keep gaining profit from it for years to come.
- You can put a price tag from $0 to thousands of dollars. Depending on your requirements.
- It’s a well-established way to teach and engage with your readers.
How to Create an Online Course?
To start an online course, these are the steps you need to take.
- Find a Course Idea
- Offer a Pre-Sale Course before you build the course
- Choose a Platform to build your course (eg. Podia)
- Build the course and launch it
3.2 Sell Ebooks
Ebooks are the digital equivalent of regular books. The difference is anybody can write and read them on a digital platform. The biggest plus point is that it will not cost you anything and you can easily recycle your previously written material and ideas. If you are already writing blogs on your website, you can easily create some interesting content for your Ebooks.
3.3 Virtual Summits/Webinars
A virtual summit is a collaborative event that features several speakers or expert participants. Instead of doing it in a meeting room, it is carried out virtually.
WIth virtual summits, you can constitute a panel of authoritative experts. You can include influencers to increase the interest of your target audience.
These summits require a lot of hard work
How can a summit monetize your blog?
- Choose a topic that your readers are most interested in
- Find influencers and experts on that topic
- Do a live session with your experts or you can pre-record the summit
- Promote the summit by all means. Use social media, digital platforms, and forums to market the summit
4. Monetize Your Blog Content Itself (Membership Sites and Sponsors)
You can sell your content in different forms. One of the ways is to set up a membership site. But it is easier said than done. Technically speaking, monetizing your content in the form of ebooks and online courses is also selling content. It is different from the previously mentioned methods.
4.1 Sponsorships and sponsored posts
In this method, people just pay for your content. For example, the most common form is a blog post. You write a blog post and you will get paid for it.
It is a quick way to make good money and it is also less time-consuming. Though you will need to polish your outreaching skills to reach a large audience. If you don’t feel comfortable asking companies and bloggers to publish your content, then this is not made for you.
Sponsorship = You reach out to companies that require the promotion of their product. You ask them to sponsor your content in exchange for money.
Sponsored Posts = In this method your content is solely focused on promoting the product or service.
4.2 Membership Sites
Membership sites are becoming more popular by the day. They can be a consistent, predictable, and recurring source of generating revenue. They can indeed be extremely hard to sell, once done you will have a pool of customers who will generate regular income.
How to monetize a blog with Membership Sites?
The first thing is the content. You need to create content that is worth paying for. If it’s not valuable to your target audience there is no chance that they will pay for it.
Then you have to use some software to restrict only the members to access the content.
The last thing is to stay consistent. You need to add worthy content regularly to keep your members with you.
Tools used for setting a membership site
Paid Memberships Pro: It lacks features but you can easily restrict the content for only the members.
MemberPress: This provides a lot of features. It’s not free but the price is reasonable as compared to the features being offered.
If you’re seeking a more profitable (but more difficult) approach to monetizing your website, but you don’t want to limit yourself to a single course… What you need is a membership site. I’ll say it again: you must have material that is worth paying for.
4.3 Flipping blogs (buying and selling, or just selling)
Technically flipping a blog is not a way to monetize your blog. Since too many people do it, it’s often considered as one.
This is so popular that the majority of people create “authority blogs” or “valuable niche blogs” with the sole purpose of flipping them. Once they start getting traffic to their blog they will flip it to gain profit.
Considering we are talking about monetizing the blog. This means we won’t be selling the blog. If you keep working on your blog regularly and create a worthy website chances are that you find a potential buyer.
If the offer suits your requirements then you can go with it. The positive side is that you can always start from the start. If you have done it once you can do it again and again and again.
5. Monetize with Blogging Services (Freelancing, Consulting, and Coaching)
We can all agree that there is no quicker and liberating way to make money than freelancing. Is it tantalizing no, is it profitable, yes.
We understand that you won’t be monetizing your blog, rather you will be making a profit out of other people’s websites.
If you are looking for a monetization method that will provide you with a huge return then there is no method better than freelancing. Period. You might be wondering why?
The answer is simple. With all the methods we discussed earlier you need to work to gain a substantial amount of traffic and cultivate followers. From these followers, you will earn your profit. In the case of freelancing, you just have to provide your services to people who are already looking for them. This makes it the easiest and fastest method to earn money.
5.1 Blog freelancing
Blog freelancing is the most common method. You can easily find clients who need help with writing their blogs. Hence an easy and quick way to earn money. You can use social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to find potential clients.
You can also utilize common freelancing platforms like Fiverr, UpWork, and TaskRabbit. These platforms are made with the sole purpose of freelancing. Therefore, these are your best options. Here’s how you can earn from freelance blogging.
● Figure out your strengths
What are you good at? What is your string suite when it comes to writing?
You don’t need to be a world-class blogger. Just have 1 or 2 niches that you are interested in. Keep working in these fields and strive to improve your skills with time.
Whether you can run Facebook ads, create unique Pinterest posts, or write fantasy or fiction. Whatever your forte is, keep honing your craft and you will reach the point where you are a master of your domain.
● Find people who are looking for your services
The next step is to find people, companies, or organizations that require your services. As discussed earlier you have plenty of options in that department. It all depends on your niche and your comfort zone.
If you think social media is better for you then so be it. If huge freelancing platforms such as UpWork is your choice you can work there.
● Pitch the prospects
Whatever platform you decide to outreach, what matters is your pitch. There are two ways to approach your prospects.
- Cold emailing all the clients to see if they need your help
- Building relationships with clients and then asking them if they need your help with blogging
The right way is to build natural relationships with your customers. Don’t just consider them as clients rather than partners in business. This way the process will be natural and you will get much better results.
Though it will take longer at first, focusing on developing REAL friendships in your communities will pay off in the long term, and this could also imply freelancing revenue.
5.2 Blog Coaching and Consulting
Whether you blog about the hottest topic in the community or about the least interesting topic. There always will be people who will need help. These people prefer a more personal and 1-on-1 conversation. Therefore they will pay you to share your insights and coach them.
It is great money when compared to actual work. The only drawback is that you need to build your authority in such a competitive market.
5.3 Get Paid for Writing Reviews
This may seem unrealistic to you at first glance. This is true though. People will pay you to write reviews for them. It can be anything. From Amazon products to someone’s blog. Whether it’s a product, service, or a company, people will pay you well to review all these.
Though starting a blog is much harder than monetizing one. Most bloggers struggle to monetize their blogs. The reason for that is the lack of knowledge of the whole process and the methods to achieve this. What you do need is a solid grasp of the economics required to make your monetization strategy a success, as well as the commitment to work hard to advertise what you have to offer.
You can choose the method you think is right for you. From all the above-discussed monetization strategies you can choose any one or a combination of strategies to achieve your goals. The important thing is to keep it simple, natural, and consistent. Keep producing quality content and you will be on your way to success.
Frequently Asked Questions – Blog Monetization
1) Which blogging platform is best for making money?
With WordPress, you have the flexibility to run different monetization methods for your blog. You can go for affiliate marketing, membership sites, or sell online courses. WordPress is easy to set up and maintain.
2) How do BEGINNER blogs make money?
We have discussed all the ways to monetize your blog and earn money. Out of all the ways we discussed, two methods are optimal for beginners.
- Affiliate Marketing
- Display Advertisements
3) How do I start a FREE blog and make money?
Though there are plenty of choices. You can opt for free blogging sites such as Medium.com, WordPress.com, and Blogger.com. These platforms are great for starters. You can earn money through digital products, courses, and eBooks.
Paying a hosting provider to host your blog, on the other hand, provides more flexibility and customization, making it easier to monetize your blog.
4) How can I make my blog profitable?
You can use every single method that we discussed above to make your blog profitable. Display Ads, selling digital products, webinars, online courses, and affiliate marketing all can help you make your blog profitable.
Even for rookie bloggers, the profits from these can often cover the annual price of domain names and hosting accounts, hence allowing them to break even!
5) Who is the highest-paid blogger?
There are plenty of bloggers who earn millions from their blogs. Some of these bloggers are:
- Ariana Huffington from Huffington Post – $250 million per year
- Tim Sykes from Timothysykes.com – $120 million per year
- Peter Rojas from Engadget.com – $50 million per year
6) How much money can you make from a blog?
In the beginning, most bloggers earn very little. Mostly from ads and affiliate marketing which generates some revenue.
Though it is possible to earn up to $50 – $200 within your first 24 months. If you succeed to gain high numbers of traffic and customers you can even reach more than $,1000. If the time and market support, you can even reach more heights. Bloggers around the world earn even up to $50,000 with a combination of affiliate marketing and promoting their digital products.