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Struggling to make money with your personal blog?
There are many ways to make money blogging. If you’re new to blogging, you’ll really fall in love with it as the blog grows, you begin to develop your audience and start earning money.
Not only do you get the opportunity to make your mark and share yourself on the internet but there is so much more to blogging than a lot of people think:
- Create an audience
- Build a network
- Make money
- Make friends
- Teach others and learn yourself
Creating an Audience with Blogging
You get to touch people and make your mark, through blogging. Whatever niche you pursue, you will be connecting with visitors who land on your blog to solve a problem. You can actually grow your readerships and collect visitors through social media and by growing your email subscribe list, which keeps your readers even closer and available to you any time you send an email to them or make a social media post.
The larger you grow your audience, the more exposure your blog gets and the more people will get to know you and follow your website online.
Building a Network
This goes beyond just building your social network. Building a network through blogging involves forming lasting connections with peers in your industry. This can bring so many benefits and opportunities, too many to share in this article. Just know that this is golden and a HUGE perk of blogging.
Make Money Blogging
Blogging is very underrated. There is unlimited income potential with blogging. We will dive into all the ways you can earn down below but you will love that the ability to earn is truly limitless.
Make Friends through Blogging
Building friendships may not seem all that important to you but, building bonds with people and making friendships can lead to a more fulfilling life.
These are like coworkers that become friends in your 9 to 5. In the world of blogging, you might make friends from Facebook or other social networks. You might make friends at blogging conferences and events you attend, local meet and greets in your city, etc. Don’t miss out on this. It’s another awesome benefit of being a blogger!
Teach Others and Learn Yourself
Of course your blog will be teaching others through your blog posts. You’ll be helping find solutions for people through your content but, did you know that you’ll also get the opportunity to learn.
- Learn more about your industry
- Learn more about working with and talking to people
- Enhancing your problem-solving skills
- Improving your writing and editing skills while becoming a better writer
- And, more!
Blogging can be life-changing. Keep reading to explore the top 5 ways to make money with your personal blog!
Why Start A Blog?
A blog is a content website created to share and educate. There are many kinds of blogs that exist. Here are some examples of popular ones:
People start blogging for various reasons including wanting to teach others about their expertise, network, get leads for their business, make money, and more.
It’s a very rewarding experience and it can turn into a full-time job, like the owners of the blogs above. Once you’ve decided to start a blog, there are 4 quick and easy steps to get going.
How to Start a Blog?
You have made the decision to break into blogging. Now, how do you actually start a blog? To create a blog, you will:
- Pick a Niche
- Pick a Blog Name
- Get Hosting, Domain, and WordPress
- Add Content
You can get through all steps in under an hour and be on your way to running a money-making blog.
Step 1: Pick a Niche
Your blog niche is your blog topic. This is what you’ll be talking about. You can talk about multiple things (niches) or have one focused niche. Both routes have been successful with other bloggers but if you want to reach success the fastest, it’s recommended that you pick a focused niche. This means you’ll pick one topic to talk about and write about only that topic.
Here are some profitable blog niches to get you started:
- Food (recipes, food lifestyles, etc.)
- Nutrition and wellness (healthy living, alternative medicine, etc.)
- Parenting and kids (including education-related and more)
- Make money (starting a business, side hustles, related topics)
- Save money (personal finance, budgeting, and building wealth)
These niches all have one thing in common.
They all have a passionate audience behind them. If you have a passionate audience behind your blog niche, you will have loyal, engaged readers. You want this because engaged readers are returning visitors and this will help you blog continue to grow and flourish.
Once you settle on your niche, next you’ll pick your blog name.
Step 2: Pick Your Blog Name
This will be fun. You are naming your blog. You want the name to be intentional and related to your niche. Try to use keywords in the name, if possible.
Focus on a shorter name, not longer than 4-5 words and you want it to match your domain name.
To check domain availability visit NameCheap and type the blog name in the domain search bar to make sure it’s available. Once you’ve got your blog name down, it’s time to get hosting, domain, and WordPress.
You can get all three in one fail swoop with Bluehost. If you want a slightly cheaper hosting option that also works well, use our link to HostGator to get a discount to $2.75 per month. You can start a business for under $50/year – not bad.
Step 3: Get Hosting, Domain, and WordPress
Head to Bluehost and pick a plan. You’ll love Bluehost because their hosting plan comes with so many perks including free domain name, SSL certificate and more!
Hosting is required to make your blog look more professional.
You will have a standalone blog url like: www(dot)yourblogname(dot)com instead of a blog that is NOT self-hosted, with a url like this: www(dot)yourblogname(dot)blogspotprovider(dot)com.
See the difference?
This is an investment but it’s affordable, at just $3.95/month and worth it!
Once you grab our hosting plan and pay, you’ll use Bluehost’s 1-click WordPress install to setup WordPress on your blog super quick. Then, you’ll be ready to access your backend dashboard and start adding content!
Step 4: Add Content
This is the meat and potatoes of your blog, the content. Your blog content will consist of blog posts and blog pages, among other things.
Blog posts are your articles you’ll write about. Here are some rules of thumb to create awesome blog posts:
- Long form content at 1,500+ words
- Short paragraphs
- Use of subheadings
- SEO-researched content, using low competition, high traffic volume keywords
- About us page
- Contact us page
- Terms of Service
With your blog ready and up and running, let’s talk about making money blogging!
How to Make Money Blogging
When you make money blogging, you can explore 1 or more of 5 income sources: ads, affiliate marketing, sponsors, products, and services.
It’s important to have multiple streams of income. Diversifying your income helps because if one income stream fails, you’ll have others to fall back on.
For example, if you have ad income and the ad network fails and goes down for 2 days, your income will drop but it won’t be nonexistent if you have other income sources like affiliate marketing, your own products, etc.
Does that make sense?
So diversifying income streams is the name of the game. Now, lets take a look at these 5 incomes sources.
Making Money Blogging with Ads
Ads or advertisements are placed on sites to make money. Advertisers want their company and products shown to website audiences to get sales and drive traffic so they collaborate with ad networks who work with publishers, like bloggers, to show their ads on the site.
As a publisher (blogger), you will work with an ad network to display advertisements on your site as a source of revenue. These ads will show to your visitors and you get paid every time a visitor clicks on an ad.
It’s passive income and an excellent source of revenue for bloggers.
Some ad network examples:
Ad revenue is low-paying per click but the more traffic your blog has, the more ad income you will earn. This is how ads work.
Making Money with Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a very lucrative industry. Companies pay affiliates to promote their products, rewarding them with a commission for each sale.
As an affiliate, you will recommend products to your readers and when your referral results in a sale, you will earn a commission.
For example, if you refer a coffee maker in a blog post and a sale is made, you will earn a commission on that sale.
The commission rate varies from merchant to merchant and will be made known to you prior to joining the affiliate program.
In the coffee maker example above, if the merchant offered a 20% commission, and the coffee maker sale was $100, your commission at 20% would be $20.
Rinse and repeat on hundreds or thousands of affiliate sales every month and you can earn a nice part-time or full-time income with affiliate marketing alone.
How Affiliate Networks Work
Here are some affiliate networks to join:
Networks are great. They are a hub for tons of merchant affiliate programs. As a blogger, you will join an affiliate network and have access to hundreds or thousands of merchant affiliate programs. You can sift and sort through merchants to pick which products you would like to promote on your blog.
Networks pay you via direct deposit, check, PayPal, and other options.
You’ll usually have access to reporting, metrics, and other tools to show you how you’re doing with your conversion rate, clicks, etc.
You can also join private affiliate programs not through a network. You will contact a merchant directly to join their affiliate program. If you land on a merchant website, you may find a link to join their affiliate program and you can apply to become an affiliate.
Making Money with Sponsors
Sponsorships are a fun way to make money blogging. You will work with brands in a collaboration to promote them on your blog.
There are various kinds of sponsorships deals you can arrange:
- Video demo
- Event booking and hosting
- Social media feature
- Email feature
The brand will compensate you to share their brand with your readers. How much you make and the terms of the sponsorship vary and are based on many factors like:
- The size of your audience
- The size of your email list and social media fanbase
- How large of a blog you have
- Your negotiation skills
- The brand’s budget
One-on-one Brand Sponsors Vs. Sponsored Networks
You can start with sponsorships in one of two ways: one-on-one with the brand or through a sponsored network.
Working one-on-one with a brand is usually a bigger paycheck but for more work. You work with the brand directly to coordinate all the details of the sponsorship.
Here are some things you will need to work out with the brand:
What is the timeline?
What is the compensation?
When will you be paid?
What are the requirements and desired goals of the campaign?
You navigate this terrain on your own, working with the brand. Once it’s arranged, the sponsorship will run. Rinse and repeat for multiple brands.
Working with a network for a sponsorship is less money but less work too. The network will be the middleman between you and the brand and they will coordinate all the details like the duration, compensation, requirements, etc.
They will provide all the information to you and once you accept, you’ll run the sponsorship.
Here are some sponsored networks to check out:
Some networks may have requirements to join, like a minimum threshold for traffic, social media, fans, etc. Others may not.
So which way do you go? One-on-one or networks?
Try both out and use them together to see what you like best. The highest paid bloggers that work with sponsors use a mix of the two in their portfolio. Give it a try!
Sponsorships are an opportunity to build relationships with companies. It’s getting paid to represent the company. As your blog grows, you may go from a one-time blog feature to being flown cross country to attend and host events or work with the company first-hand.
This video influencer made $30,000 from one sponsorship!
Brand sponsorships can be very lucrative. It really makes you think, doesn’t it?
Making Money with Products
One of the most lucrative ways to make money blogging is with your own products and services. For products, you create something great and sell to your audience.
This blogger has shared her $400K+ product launches, regularly. She teaches others how to have profitable product launches too!
You can create digital or physical products.
Digital products include things like:
- Digital planners
These are all digital-based and passive income forming. You create digital goods once and sales continue in the future.
Some tools to use to create such products:
Digital products are the bread and butter of blogging income. Some bloggers even offer courses and trainings to conduct an effective digital product launch.
Here are some resources to help you dive into the digital product scene:
- 6-week Checklist for launching a digital product
- 8 Steps to Creating and Launching Profitable Digital Products
- 5 Areas of Focus for Launching Your First Digital Product
Making Money with Services
When it comes to making money with your personal blog with services, you’ll start by doing an evaluation of your skills. Consider your strengths and weaknesses. Think about where your expertise lies, what can you teach others, and what pain points can you solve with your services.
Here are some examples of services you might offer:
- Bookkeeping and accounting
- Social media management
- Virtual assistance
- Organization and planning
- Graphic design
- Video editing
- Software development
- Web design
Your blog is a great place to market your services. You’ll have an audience familiar with you, open to take your offer of services.
A lot of bloggers start with a handful of clients and eventually scale up, expanding their team, and staffing up to accommodate the workload. This is an example of how a part-time hustle can turn into a full business.
Here are some tools you might use for your services business:
- Paypal-invoicing and payments
- Square-invoicing, payments, and payment arrangements
- Hootsuite-social media management
- Canva-graphic design
- Keap-small business management and organization
The list is endless. If you have skills, a great place to offer them up is your personal blog. You can also get clients and leads outside of your blog, in places like:
Now that we’ve examined the 5 income categories of blogging, how do you actually get started?
Getting Started Making Money with your Personal Blog
First, it’s important to express that you want to diversify your blogging income as much as you can. This was shared above and I’m circling back to it again because it really is critical.
If you only have one income stream and it fails, you’ll be left in the dark, with zero income. So, of the 5 ways to earn money with your personal blog, you want to try as many (if not all) of them as you can.
When you’re finally ready to begin monetizing your blog, here’s how you get started:
- Get organized
- Take your time
- Research and Follow through
- Measure your results
- Rinse and repeat
Make Money Blogging by Getting Organized
Organization is key. You want to organize and track all your income. Get organized with recording the companies and networks that you are working with, track your links, monitor your ad account, and more.
This can be with pen and paper, using a spreadsheet, or hiring a contract bookkeeper to track your income.
Because, income not tracked can potentially be left on the table.
When I first started blogging, I made money with all 5 income sources: ads, affiliates, sponsors, products, and services. I remember one particular occasion when when of my affiliate networks kept reminding me to invoice them. This was when I was new to blogging and I had no idea what they were talking about.
I was used to networks sending me payment when I reached the threshold and the payment cycle ended. Little did I know that there were networks that required the blogger to send them an invoice in order to receive payment.
What an eye-opening moment for me?
I was not tracking my income with this network nor was I doing the same with all the networks I worked with. Big mistake. When I finally followed up with them I had wasted months accruing a balance when I could have received payment prior. This is an example of how not tracking your income can hurt you. Lesson learned.
Keep track of your income (and expenses, too) by getting organized.
Make Money Blogging by Taking Your Time
I remember as a new blogger constantly feeling like I was rushing.
Rushing to publish a new post, rushing to grab all the affiliate links to insert in post, just always rush. Blogging is not a race and as I became more experienced, I learned to slow down and take my time. If you avoid rushing, you lower the chances that you’ll make a mistake like, misspelling an affiliate link and catching the error 2 months later (true story).
Increase Your Blogging Income with Research and Follow Through
Take some time to research monetization venues like certain affiliate programs, for example, that are profitable and work well with consumers. Look at your competitors and peers, see what is working for others, experiment and test out new methods of yourself.
A blogger friend of mine was an EXCELLENT writer. Her blog posts were always stellar and she got pretty decent traffic too but her blog income did not reflect that. After she took time to research what was working for her peers and experimenting on her own, she went on to 10X her income the following month!
Just one example of how research and experimenting can produce positive results.
Tracking Your Income for Growth by Measuring Results
Tracking your income goes hand in hand with tracking and measuring your results. Make sure you are watching your numbers so you know if growth is happening.
No fancy tools needed here.
Take a look at these free tools to help:
Rinse and Repeat
Keep going. Rinse and repeat this process so you can continue building your blogging income in the future.
Making money with your personal blog is definitely within reach.
Lets recap the 5 income sources shared above:
- Ads: placing advertisements on your blog to earn money on clicks
- Affiliate marketing: referring products and earning a commission on the successful sale
- Sponsorships: being a brand ambassador by partnering with companies to share products with your readers
- Products: creating and selling your own digital and physical products
- Services: creating and selling services
I hope this roundup was helpful to you. Questions? Comment down below so we can continue the conversation!