Blogging has changed my life, and therefore, I want it to change yours. If you have been wondering how to make money blogging, well, buckle up, because today, I am going to tell you. Blogging often starts out as a hobby or a release of sorts, but it can be so much more!
If you are interested in starting a blog, you can find step by step instructions on how to start a blog for really cheap! You can start a money-making blog for as little as a few dollars a month through my special Bluehost link discount, so hurry and take advantage of this opportunity before it expires! In order to make money blogging, you want to have a self-hosted blog, which means buying a hosting package. You will even receive a free domain if you sign up for hosting with this new deal. In order to maximize the money you can make, you need to be self-hosted. So, if you are interested and want to start a blog, I can walk you through it.
My first blog was about logos. I was interested in the industry and I started blogging about graphic design and logos and their origins. I didn’t know the first thing about blogging, but it was a fun adventure and a great place to get started. I made about $1,000 a month, and worked about 3-5 hours a week, at most. Not bad money, for the effort put in.
Fast forward 7 years and I am making $70k+ a month and I can travel the world, work on my own schedule, raise my children at home and be my own boss. Pretty good little setup, no? I have spent my time finding new revenue streams, traffic streams and ways to monetize my blogs. You don’t need gobs of traffic to make money. You need to be thoughtful and deliberate. Nothing I have done is rocket science or requires a crazy IQ. I have spent hours and hours researching how to make money blogging and now I want to share my findings with you.
I often get asked from bloggers or readers things like “I have been blogging for a year and a half, but how do I actually turn it into money?” Or something like “How do I make money blogging? Where should I start?”
Great questions. Today, I am going to go over a few ways to make money blogging.
Bloggers *working from home* are some of the highest paid internet marketers in the industry right now. Some people think that unless you are famous, there is no money to be made. Have no fear. There is a big enough “piece of the pie” for everyone. And fortunately, it doesn’t matter how many bloggers are out there, you can still make money blogging from home.
It is a dream come true, truly.
“How do I make money blogging?” you ask? Here is the skinny:
Advertisements to Make Money Blogging
This is probably the easiest way to start. Google Adsense has been good to me. It takes some time and testing, but all in all, it can create a fairly consistent revenue stream. I have focused mostly on ad revenue the past 7 years, but have gotten into other things that I will discuss in a bit. There are a lot of different advertising networks.
Here are the things I like about Google Adsense:
- It is super easy. You create the ad based on what you want it to look like, fonts, colors, size, etc. You copy and paste that ad code right into your WordPress blog. There are plugins that make this easier, if you are not comfortable with hard-coding. Look for Ad Inserter or Ad Injection. Both are pretty user-friendly.
- Real-Time reporting. I love to see what my revenue is for that day. Very reliable reports.
- Accepts most blogs- You may have to apply again later, if you get rejected, but they approve most blogs as long as you are self-hosted and are in compliance with their Terms of Service.
- You can place the ads anywhere you like on your page. Be sure to read terms of service so you can see what is accepted and what is not.
- 100% Fill solution (they place ads in your ad spot 100% of the time. Other networks may not have the ad capacity to do that.)
Other Advertising networks:
- Most work the same general way. Create the ad, copy and paste the code, and voila!
- Look into Medianet, BlogHer, Sovrn, Taboola, just to name a few
- Look for networks that don’t have a minimum traffic threshold. Some require a bazillion page views a month. Maybe you have them already, whahoo! Especially if you are just starting, look around for the right network. Read reviews and get educated. Do they pay based on PPC (pay per click) or CPM, which is based on impressions the ad unit gets?
- Try to find networks that offer the highest payout or has the highest “fill” rate. A fill rate is how often that ad spot is filled with an ad on your page. You may choose an ad network that only has enough ad network to fill your ad 30% of the time. You will want to find another ad network to work as a “backup” to fill the other 70% of the time, to maximize your earnings. Leaving it blank the other 70% of the time is just a missed opportunity.
Ok, now here is the most important thing. Placement, placement, placement! This requires testing and trying new ads. Don’t throw up some ad code and leave it, thinking that it is the most you can possibly make. Sometimes, changing the color of the font and the size of the ad can have a huge effect on your earnings. The experts always recommend testing ad units for no less than 2 weeks, but I have totally bailed on an experiment that makes my numbers dive. Maybe you will be more patient than me:) Every time you try something new, it takes some time to get some good, concrete stats, to be able to compare. But I chicken out on experiments when numbers drop.
Other Advertising tips:
Don’t be afraid to try multiple ad networks and see what works best. Some networks are best for certain niches, while others will have more inventory for a different topic. This is something you will constantly be working on, and if you are like me, it is fun!! I love running numbers and comparing stats to find what is working the best.
Here are a few other ideas for making money from home:
- Top 54 Side Hustles to Make Money on the Side
- How to Make Money Using Survey Sites for Free
- 7 Easy Ways to Make Money Blogging
- 50 Ways to Earn Extra Money on the Side
- 8 Legit Ways to Make Money from Home
- 15 Legit Ways to Make an Extra $1500 a Month
Use Affiliate Marketing to Make Money Blogging
Affiliate marketing is a great way to increase your blog earnings and make money from home. In case you are new to affiliates, here is how it works.
Jane is a blogger. She loves Kat Von D makeup from Sephora. She posts all about it, so her readers know why her skin looks so amazing. Her readers like it, too! They like her face and now want to buy that makeup. They click on her affiliate link to purchase Kat Von D makeup and they buy it. The affiliate network/brand then pays her a commission on the sale. Pretty sweet gig, right?
I use affiliates, such as Bluehost and other companies that I really like and want to recommend to my readers.
Here is what you need to know about affiliates:
- There are a bunch of affiliate networks and the payouts range drastically. Some are as little as 1% (that is a lot of makeup you have to sell to buy a yacht!) While others are a set $ amount. Shop around, find products you like and decide which way to go.
- There are affiliate networks like Shopstyle, Commission Junction, Reward Style and more that have all the products already in their system and they work as the affiliate platform. They provide the stats and numbers and you use their platform for your affiliate marketing. It is as easy as creating a link to a product and copying it into your WordPress blog.
- You can also go directly to some companies and sign up to become affiliates directly through their business.
- Some pay out on a net 30 basis, some take as long to pas as net 90 (30 days, 90 days, respectively.)
- Some affiliates (most?) have a payment threshold. You have to earn X amount of dollars before you can be paid out on anything.
I never recommend pushing a product you don’t ACTUALLY like or believe in. This will create distance and mistrust with your readers. Only push products you truly like. Don’t sell your soul for that yacht. It won’t get you anywhere in the end. 🙂
Here are some other affiliate programs you can check out.
It’s important to work with affiliate companies that are similar to the theme of your blog. For example, if you are running a beauty blog, use affiliates to health and beauty products. Your readers trust your opinion, and will look to you for expertise.
Sponsorships as a Way to Make Money Blogging
This is actually referred to as direct advertising. This is when a company contacts you to represent them in your blog post. Sometimes you will write the post (and they approve it) and sometimes they provide a post and you can edit it to make it your own, etc. This is usually a product review or something of the like.
The more traffic you have, and the more relevant audience you draw, the more the post may be worth. There is a wide variety of prices that you can charge for this. Be sure you charge enough to make it worth your time. These can be some of the most tedious posts you do, as you need to submit for approval, etc, so be sure you aren’t working for free.
A Few More Tips
- Don’t settle on one method of monetizing, and call it quits. You may be able to make money blogging through multiple revenue streams. Test some different things out and see what works best.
- If you have a particular expertise, consider writing an ebook on that subject and selling that through your blog. It is a great way to make a recurrent money from one-time work.
- Freelance writing for other blogs or charging other writers to post to your blog
**If you are interested in learning how to make money online, or making money blogging, check out this post on How to Start a Money-Making Blog for 4 Easy steps to make it happen.