So many of my peeps are frustrated, wondering how they can make money just by writing blog posts, it seems like there must be some voodoo magic behind it all! Here are 6 of my best tips and ideas for ways to make money blogging.
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- 6 Ways To Make Money From Blogging
- Make Money Blogging FAQs
6 Ways To Make Money From Blogging
I have been blogging for years and hearing about that elusive white whale, making money from just being you! From 2008-2017 I blogged (A LOT) and made a little bit of money, but not enough to make a big difference.
Then a couple of years ago I decided to switch over to blogging full time and HAD to make more money if I was going to be successful.
Here are my top ways of making money, from easiest to hardest, and a bit of info about each!
1. Putting Ads On Your Site
Oh my gosh, I fought putting ads on my site for so long… sigh. I thought if I had ads I would lose all my traffic and everyone would hate me!
But once I put ads on there, really nothing happened except I made money… lots of money (about 4K in December)!
But there are some things you should know! First off you have to have at least 10K sessions per month to get into Monumentric and 25K sessions a month to get into Mediavine (my ad network, love them so much!)
I personally would suggest waiting until you get into Mediavine to put ads on your site, but I know some people need to make money sooner than that. I do not recommend you use Google Adsense as it slows your site down and doesn't pay much at all!
To Do : If you are a blogger looking to make money from writing, set your goal to 25K sessions a month!
Additional resource: Should You Put Ads On Your Website?
2. Growing An Email List
The very next thing you need to do is start growing an email list! Having that direct connection with your audience lets you send traffic to your site (more ad views), and sell things to them.
You can start an email list for free (including a free landing page builder) with my email provider ConvertKit.
If you are just starting out with an email marketing list, make sure you offer them something to buy every time! It doesn't have to be something big, but for sure you want to “train” them that there will be offers in every mailing.
Now, this may sound crass or icky, but people DO want to buy things that will help them, and they are looking to you to be a source for products and services that you believe in (I never send anything that I don't use or super believe in!)
To do: Sign up for an email service if you haven't already, if you have then start sending a weekly email message including links to buy something!
Additional Resource: 6 Ways To Make Money From Your Email Newsletter List
3. Selling Affiliate Products
This one could be a post all by itself, but I want to hit the high points of affiliate marketing for you!
First off, have you ever read about something awesome, then gone to look for it and can't find it anywhere, wasting tons of time Googling?
Well, as a blogger your job is to make sure your peeps have access to what they need and that includes the products and services that you recommend!
You should have affiliate links in EVERY blog post you write (writing blog posts is your job now, you need to make money!) In this post I have links to a few different services I am an affiliate for!
That said, you can't just have link, after link, after link. You need to make sure what you are recommending is a good fit for your readers and your content.
You will need to join an affiliate program like Amazon or Share A Sale to get started (they will want a certain level of traffic too, so if you are just starting out, start with getting more session views before you try to monetize!)
Then start signing up or finding products that you can recommend. If you are at a loss for what those are, then do the 100's game!
Spend a week writing down at least 100 things you use or love. So for me, I would write down art supplies, dog treats and toys, cooking utensils, hair bands, ankle wrap (I have a sprained ankle), iPhone, etc.
Then think of the venn diagram of your blog and the things you are an “expert” in!
I think a lot of people get this wrong when they start out. They try to find high paying or high converting affiliate products to recommend instead of figuring out what they can talk passionately about and then promoting those!
If you want to make more money, make sure you ware writing about things down the customer journey. For example, if you talk about “the best no ink printers” you are early on in the customer journey (they are just researching). If you talk about the “Sprocket No Ink Printer” they are further along in their journey and might be ready to buy!
You need a mix of all kinds of posts because if you have all SPECIFIC posts you won't get much traffic and your ads will suffer. If you have all BROAD posts, you will have more traffic, but won't sell as many affiliate products!
Additional Resource : Creative Affiliate Marketing Tips & Ideas… Starting A Brand New Site
4. Writing Promoted Posts
The next way to make money is contract with a specific company and write a blog post highlighting their product. This can be a very lucrative way to make money (I charge between $500-1,500 per post).
To find these opportunities you can join a program like Tap Influence. They will be looking at your view counts AND social media follower counts to see if you have enough influence.
But way before that you will start getting emails from companies that want to send you products to review (I got my first one on my little site and was SOOOO happy!)
I KNOW, a lot of other people recommend not taking products in exchange for posting, but if you are just starting out, it is a great idea (if it is a product you love!)
Go ahead and write an AMAZING product review post. Share it on social media A LOT, ask all your friends to make comments on it. THEN when the next person comes along and asks you to work for free, let them know what you want to charge and send them a link to your great product review so they can see how cool you are!
They don't have to know you did it for “free”, AND you will have the experience of writing a promoted post!
To do: Try to find some products you love and write a review post that is AMAZING!
5. Selling Your Own Products
Up until now you haven't had to do anything super techy on your site to accomplish your money making (maybe a signup form for your email list). But now you are stepping into a new level of technology in order to sell your own products!
I use both Thinkific (to sell courses) and Etsy (to sell digital downloads). The thing I like about these services is that they handle all the technical parts of setting up a shopping cart, logins and fulfillment. You could also have a standalone store on a site like Shopify, but know that you will be responsible for all the tech support for your users!
Once you have your ecommerce solution in place, you want to think about what you can sell! There are a million-billion different digital products you can offer, here are a few suggestions:
- Online courses
- White papers
- Paid Facebook groups
- Membership sites
The list is endless! But for sure pick something that you will be good at!
I am super bossy so I like making marketing courses where I can tell people what to do. I also make worksheets for me to use in my real life, so I just make those available for sale for others too!
If you are anything like me, you have tons of stuff just sitting on old hard drives that you can pull out and start selling!
To do: Pick one small project to sell (in the $3-7 range) and get a store set up!
6. Getting Public Speaking Gigs
Last but not least, you will start to be asked to speak on Podcasts and webinars if your content is good!
That is an awesome way to drive new traffic to your website and get new readers, but it is also a way to get paid speaking events! Do a great job on their show and they might think about hiring you for their next conference!
You will need to have a speaker page on your site. Include a headshot, some recordings of you speaking, a list of talks that you can give and testimonials from past speaking events!
You can also sign up for speakers services like Speaker Match to be found by random people who need a speaker!
Make Money Blogging FAQs
Okay, that is all the “Official” info, now here are some things that people always ask me about when we talk blogging for money!
How Much Can You Make Blogging?
I make between $6-10K a month. I know some successful bloggers who make $120K a month. It really depends on your niche and how much focus you have.
Can You Include Amazon Affiliate Links In Your Emails?
This is a big NO NO! You can't include Amazon Affiliate links anywhere that is not public. So no emails, Facebook groups or Membership site links.
What you can do is write a post that includes those links and then send your peeps to that post!
Do you “cloak” your links?
Okay, let's call a spade a spade, affiliate links are long, ugly and obvious! However, there is a super neat (free) plugin called Pretty Links that you can use to make shorter links to include in emails and other correspondence.
How do you keep track of all your affiliate links?
When I started I had a big spreadsheet of all the links, the sign in site and the percentages they paid. Now I just put the signin site in my pretty links dashboard and it is pretty loosey goosey.
Promoted posts sound like easy money, is this true?
I accept very few promoted posts. I don't like working for someone else and you have to do what they want when you are doing promoted work.
That said, many of the gals make THOUSANDS of dollars a month doing promoted posts! It all depends on what you like to do!
Does anyone ever complain about the ads on your site?
Not really. I have had a couple of people say something, but in general ads are everywhere and people are used to them.
If they really hate them they can install an ad blocker and get rid of them entirely!
Getting Paid To Blog Wrapup
Okay, that is A LOT to take in! Hopefully it helps to understand how you can monetize your blog…. most of which are truly passive income after you have written the blog posts!
Yes, it is a lot of work up front, but after you are done with the post, it is just an occasional update here and there!
I have to say that my life is pretty darn glorious now that my job is blogging all day long (I LOVE blogging!)
I suggest you try all the different ways and see which ones work the best for you long term! It is good to have multiple income streams because things change all the time!