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8 Ways to Make Money from Blogging

updated on Oct 08, 2015
8 Ways to Make Money from Blogging If you are running or have even run a blog, you must have asked the question – "Can I make some money from blogging to support my project and life?" The answer is "Yes, you can" as long as you would like to take some time figuring out a plan that is suitable for your blog. If you are ambitious enough, you can even earn thousands of USD per month.

This post introduces 8 easy ways for you to turn your personal blog into a profitable career without many technical or business skills. You can choose a single method, or combine 2 or 3 together, all depending on how you operate the blog.

But before starting out, you should have a check to see whether you and your blog are well prepared for making money online.

Make Yourself Prepared

Does your blog have steady traffic? Have you focused on some valuable keywords for your niche? Have you set up a newsletter campaign? There are too many questions to ask. Or at least, you should make sure you have done all the following things.

Create valuable content and update your blog regularly

Fresh and valuable content is the most important factor of a good blog as it generates quality traffic and increases your rankings in a natural way. Only when you have loyal readers who love your content, can you rest assured that you will get customers for your future products and services. Producing content is time-consuming, but there is no shortcut.

Build good relationships with your readers

Try to build sincere relationships with your readers via social media, blog comments or forums. Interacting with them and offering help enable you to establish a good reputation and make yourself trustworthy. Besides, these relationships can also help you gain more income in the future.

Increase the number of subscribers

If you sell products and services, subscribers are important because they are probably the first customers. More subscribers mean a more effective email marketing plan and more business opportunities. To gain subscribers, you should:
  • Add a signup form to your website, so that visitors can subscribe to your updates.
  • Post the links to good content in social media to reach out to a larger audience.
  • Use paid advertisements if you have enough budget and good keywords.
Make Yourself Prepared

Method 1: Sell eBooks and Courses

If you have professional knowledge about your site topics, spending some time writing an eBook or working out several courses is a good idea to get started. eBooks are not the same profitable as they were a few years ago, but if you have a compelling topic and some supporters helping promote them, they can still bring you some income.

For eBooks and courses, it is suggested not to make only one, but multiple of them which are bundled into series. Also, remember that the most important thing is to make the content informational and useful for your readers.

Method 2: Use an Ad Service

The next option is to sell ad spaces on your website – the sidebar, footer, header or within the content. By using an ad network, you do not need to design or place ads by yourself, but you can select the keywords so that only the related ads are displayed on your site. Clicks on the ads will generate profits for you.

However, ads which are not properly placed or less relevant to your content will harm your site design and readers' feelings. So if you'd like to start making money by displaying ads from an ad network, pay attention to the following tips.
  • Make sure to meet your hosting providers' requirements. Some web hosts do not allow using some kinds of ad networks, so you should contact your hosting provider before selling ad spaces to make sure that your account will not be suspended or terminated due to violation of the TOS.
  • Choose the proper keywords to make the ads contextual to your content. Inaccurate keywords will bring ads that do not meet your readers' interests and needs.
  • Choose the right ad network. Google AdSense, BuySellAds and Chitika are good choices that are easy-to-use even for beginners.
  • Be careful about the placement of ads. Do not let ads occupy your pages or generate confusion for your readers. Also, you should experiment more to find out the best places.
Use an Ad Service

Method 3: Sell Private Ads

Yes, this is still about displaying ads, but the difference from an ad network is that you are displaying the ads you want instead of random ads. The difficult part of selling private ads is that you have to establish the partnership with the advertiser (an individual or small business) by yourself.

You can make an advertising page on your blog, and then reach out to the companies in your similar niche to ask if they want to advertise on your blog. Do not know who to contact? Look at your competitors' ads to get some ideas. Not sure how much to charge? See what others charge on their advertising page.

Method 4: Consider Affiliate Programs

Affiliate programs are good options if you have a certain amount of traffic. By participating in a company's affiliate program, you link to their products with special affiliate links, and when someone makes a purchase through the links, you get paid for the referral. You can find affiliate opportunities by searching an affiliate directory or by searching companies' websites for affiliate pages.

Below are some useful tips if you would like to be a good affiliate marketer.
  • Choose proper affiliate products. The products must be closely related to your site content and really needed by your readers. Think about what your readers are willing to buy.
  • Write honest product reviews based on your experience. Do not ever try to cheat your readers with dishonest reviews unless you want them never to come back. Before recommending a product, be sure to test it. You have to treat your readers as friends.
  • Tell your readers that you are an affiliate. In many countries including the US, you are required by the law to let readers know you receive commissions for reviews and referral.
  • Put ads on your blog. You can make several ads for the affiliate products and place them reasonably on your blog to generate more attention and clicks.
Consider Affiliate Programs

Method 5: Sell Your Own Services

This is not about selling physical products. If you are professional in writing, SEO, web development or any other skills, you can offer service packages for paid consultation, website troubleshooting, skill improvement, etc. For example, theme/plugin designers usually charge for technical support.

If you offer such services, put emphasis on the premium services first. It seems that cheap services bring more consumers, but in fact, fewer purchases of premium services can also generate a respectable income while keeping you focusing on improving the quality of your services.

For example, if you offer a $200 package for a coaching program which is favored by 2% of your subscribers, then 1000 total subscribers can bring a sale of $4000. On the contrary, a package priced at $20 with a 10% purchase rate brings you an income of $2000 only, not to mention that you will spend more time dealing with 100 customers' needs than focusing on 20 customers.

Method 6: Create an Online Store to Sell Products

If you are blogging about original photos, artworks or handmade products, you can build an online store in a section of your site, on a separate domain, or on some platforms like Etsy. Choosing either of the latter two ways, you should provide rich content about the products on your blog and post links to them.

If you would like to set up a self-hosted online store on your existing site, you must make much effort to keep it professional and promote it. Make sure you are sending newsletters regularly to introduce your new products and promotional offers to your readers. To be honest, running your own online store is not recommended if you have no one else helping design and maintain it.

Create an Online Store

Method 7: Allow Readers to Donate to Your Project

Working on a project and looking to raise some funds for it? You can add a PayPal donation button to encourage your readers to donate to it. If you have been offering many free and useful advice or assistance on your blog, it is possible to receive enough funds in a short time. This method is only recommended for developers and creative bloggers.

Method 8: Accept Sponsored Posts

This is an easy way for monetizing your blog. You can add a section on the contact us page stating that you are accepting sponsored posts, and then make clear of the requirements and assign proper prices. There is nothing else to do. If your blog has good rankings and traffic, you will soon receive inquiries. Usually, a sponsored post includes one or two links to the sponsor's website or product.

There are two points to pay attention to in terms of sponsored posts.
  • Check the sponsor's website first before accepting the request to make sure you are not linking to low-quality or spammy websites. For paid product review, you'd better ask for a free account to have a test.
  • Keep the number of sponsored posts to the minimum so that you are not sacrificing your reputation for short-term profits.