There are primarily two types of bloggers in the blogosphere. There are the ones who do it for fun or their passion for a particular subject and there are those who do it with the sole intention of making money. Sure, the lines get blurred and there are obviously bloggers who are passionate about a given subject and in turn want to make money from it but most people do fall into one category or another.
With that said, very few individuals actually start out blogging with the sole intention of making money. They tend to start by choosing a subject that is of interest to them, finding a platform such as Wordpress, then purchasing a domain name and hosting in order to display their musings to the world. Making money, well, the idea of making money at least usually comes later.
Once the first pound is generated, most bloggers become hooked and want to squeeze every last bit of revenue out of their site. This is perfectly acceptable if done right and your actual blog content doesn’t suffer as a result but like with anything in this industry there is a right way and a wrong way to go about it.
If you choose the right monetization methods, you can easily generate an income from your blog (providing you have the traffic of course) without distracting from your content and completely putting off your reader.
So today, we’re going to run through some of the most well know ways to make money from blogging in order to reach the holy grail of generating automated income from your blog.
All of the below if integrated properly are a great way to make money blogging whilst maintaining the integrity and readership of your beloved blog.
The trusted Google AdSense platform is the go to paid click advertising platform of choice and has been for the past 15 years or so.
AdSense is a fantastic platform if you wish to display text link ads or banners around your blog as it will only display advertisements relevant to the content at hand which results in above average click through rates when compared to the traditional banner advertisement.
The ad blocks themselves are also designed to perfectly integrate into your existing content and blog design/theme. This means that the ads appear prominent but also blend well with your content as not to distract your reader.
The only downside with AdSense is that it is often difficult to get approved if you’re trying to sign up with a relatively new blog. So until your blog is more established (in terms of traffic) it’s probably best to use one of the alternatives below.
The offerings by Media.net make them a genuine competitor to AdSense with a wide range of advertisers and ad placement formats. They’re the typical go-to source for those who have difficulty with AdSense be it unable to get approval or past issues meaning they’re unable to serve ads.
Media.net feature keyword block advertising which yields huge click through rates compared to AdSense and often at a better price per click. These blocks can be placed in line in your content and like with AdSense they serve adverts related to the surrounding text making them idea for bloggers with heavy text-based content.
As with AdSense, they pay for any generated clicks for the previous month at the end of the following month.
If you’re blogging about a highly specific subject, affiliate programs can be a great source of income. Unlike the above two monetization methods, affiliate programs pay you whenever a user you refer actually buys a product or service. Or on occasion, simply signs up to it.
Typically, you’re paid either a flat fee or a commission percentage of the product or service purchased. This is obviously different to the likes of AdSense and Media.net where you’re paid for each and every click, regardless of if the user buys something.
Whilst to some that might sound like a bad deal, the commissions you can make by selling other peoples products and services can be huge. Especially if it is what is known as a “big ticket item” with a high selling price.
As an example, suppose you run a technology blog and you publish a post about the latest laptop. Be it a review or otherwise. If someone clicked out via a link on your site, via AdSense or similar and then went on to purchase the laptop, you will get a matter of pence for the click. However, if they clicked out via an affiliate link and purchased the laptop, you would typically get a percentage of the sale. So you’ve got potentially 10% of a £2,000 laptop in commission or 5 – 10p for the click. Obviously there is a trade off as not every visitor clicking out is going to go on and purchase the £2,000 laptop. It would be up to you to test which monetization method works best for the blog/content at hand.
Private Ad Sales
This is literally selling banner ads and such on your blog directly to a third party or via an intermediary service such as BuySellAds.com.
Some companies prefer to pay a flat fee to advertise on a specific blogs rather than paying per click or giving a way a percentage of their sales via affiliate commissions.
This can be a great way to generate income in a lump sum fashion, but in my opinion if a company is willing to pay to advertise on your blog then your traffic is obviously generating sales for them. There would be no reason for them to do it otherwise. And if you’re generating sales, you should really be opting for the affiliate approach and earning a percentage of the sale price.
With that said, if you’re referring people to one company and that traffic is resulting in sales. The chances are other companies, their competitors will also be interested in the traffic. That means you have some leverage in order to get the best deal across the board be it the maximum price for the fixed-fee ad or by partnering with the best paying company based on commission.
Sponsored / Paid Posts
Sometimes frowned upon in some circles, sponsored posts can still be a great income generator for your blog. Particularly if your blog is covering lots of subject and affiliate deals are thin on the ground. Or you don’t have the masses of traffic needed to grind out a living via paid click networks such as AdSense.
Companies (and individuals) typically want to pay to place a post on your blog for one of two reasons. Firstly, to get the word out about their site and have people click through from your site to theirs or secondly, to increase their SEO efforts.
Whatever their angle, it’s safe to say that despite the opinions of some, the sponsored post market is rife and is a fantastic way to make money via your blog right from the outset.
The figure you’ll be able to command for such placement would ultimately depend on the metrics your blog boasts.
Sponsored Social Marketing
This one will need to be temporarily shelved if you’re a relatively new blog. But if you have an active readership and a significant amount of likes or followers then advertising via your social channels can be an fantastic additional revenue stream.
Companies will often pay for a sponsored tweet, mention or status update advertising their services. The price paid will be wholly dependent on your social reach but if you’ve acquired a large following over time it can be a great untapped income source.
You can sell sponsored tweets on the cheap via the likes of Fiverr.com but for significant revenue you’ll need to do direct deals with any potential advertisers.
As with social marketing, e-mail newsletters are often overlooked as a way to generate income through your blog but can be great sideline. Particularly if over the years you’ve generated a significant amount of subscribers.
Like with paid tweets and such, advertisers will pay for you to send out a newsletter to your subscribers to advertise their produce or service. Or they may simply want a mention in your existing newsletter.
You do however need to be careful and highly selective about who and what you feature as you wouldn’t want to lose subscribers and readership for a single, solitary advertisement sale.
Obviously if making money online is your goal, you don’t need to choose one method or the other. It’s perfectly normal for bloggers to use each and every one of the methods listed above in order to make money.
But like with any web project, the key is traffic fundamentally and without that you’re going to struggle to generate any income whatsoever. So be wise, be cautious and don’t let excessive monetization of your blog distract from your core content. That is, after all what is going to generate traffic and traffic is what is going to lead to £.