One of the reasons many bloggers blog is to make money. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that as this has grown into a full-time business for many. But making money blogging isn’t easy at all. There is a lot of work that’s involved. Sometimes, we go by the popular deception that once you’ve bought your domain name and hosting, you can start making the money.
I wrote a guest post on Ryan’s blog here to completely dismiss this misconception and to make you understand that making money blogging is tough and you need to gird your loins to face it.
However, what I found interesting is the fact there are many different ways to make money blogging. As a matter of fact, I wrote a guide on 15 different ways bloggers make money blog so I encourage you to check that out.
This doesn’t mean as a blogger, you should embrace all of these. Some could be more effective than others for you. But to get a clearer picture of what works best for most of us in the industry, I stepped out to chat with some savvy bloggers.
I wanted them to share with us their 3 most profitable ways to make money blogging. I believe this is going to inspire and point you in the right direction. Oftentimes, learning from people’s success stories is effective in taking us forward. So good luck as you go through what my friends have shared with us.
Question: What are the top 3 ways you make money blogging
Sadly, I am not the typical top-earning blogger who has tons of visitors every single day and tries to cash in on the number of visits. But, I always like this question and brainstorm how bloggers rely only on this single income source. Some are really good in this business, but I just aim to make my audience aware of online marketing. It gives me some SEO orders which enable me to clear my bills.
But, if I’ll own a blog with some decent traffic statistics, I would like to choose these monetization methods:
- Affiliate Revenue – People make great money through the Amazon affiliate program. I see many online marketing bloggers sign-up for Raven Tools or SEM Rush affiliation programs. They do give better returns. If you have the potency to make your readers buy the target product, you can earn a good commission. That’s a real win compared to hosting grisly ads from ad networks.
- Hosting Events/Summits – Though this is a game plan for big guys, I’m very fascinated by the meet-ups and summits happening around me. You can make money by charging a small fee to attend the event or you can look for a sponsor. MozCon, SearchLove, Pubcon, and SMX are big-time successes.
- Direct Advertisements/Reviews – Selling banner ads and publishing good reviews can make you regular money out of your blog. Every popular magazine site monetizes through banner ads – SEJ, Forbes…to name a few. Businesses pay somewhere from $100 to $500 for their product reviews. That’s not a bad deal, IMO.
Adam Connell (Founder of Blogging Wizard)
The most profitable tactic I have used has been offering scalable services. When we first launched UK Linkology, I used blogging (and guest blogging) to build a substantial customer base within 3-4 months.
Even after spending only a few days each month on marketing, we were doing 5 figures each month – consistently. The only difficulty with this is actually scaling the service, and configuring what you’re offering in such a way that allows you to plug new people into the business quickly.
Another way I make money is through affiliate marketing. I use this across almost all my sites. It’s difficult when you’re first getting started, but once you have an audience it gets a lot easier. In the future, I’ll be working on courses and ebooks.
But in the meantime, on some of my smaller sites, I’ve been experimenting with sponsored content & advertising. So far sponsored content has proven the most fruitful.
Justin March (Freelance SEO in Bristol and Chief Buddy at Username Buddy )
Assuming that you have completed the basics and have set up a blog and started to create useful content. You need to spread the risk across a variety of income streams. Each of these streams needs to consider the needs of your readers. In my experience, even offerings that show the closest connection can underperform and take you by surprise. You need to test and work out what works for your readers.
As a rule here’s what I find works best:
- Adsense Ads – Adsense in my view is a no-brainer, ads are high value, high quality, and relevant to your content or audience. You let Adsense do the hard work of offering the most relevant ads to your readers.
- Affiliate Ads – I like CJ Affiliate and Shareasale but don’t dismiss the programs offered by specific websites. I have seen great results from programs offered via the likes of Namecheap.
- What Works Best for [Insert Niche] – You should conduct competitor research. Don’t reinvent the wheel, what works for the competition may well work for you. Also, are they missing a trick, nothing like getting your hands dirty to spot opportunities?
Justin March [https://www.justinmarch.com/] Freelance SEO Expert Bristol
Janice Wald (Janice Wald, Blogger at Mostly Blogging)
Hi, Happily, I do have multiple income streams.
- I am a freelance writer. I seemed to have found a niche in reviewing tools and websites that help website creators with compensation. I heard this is the most lucrative way bloggers make money and I have found this to be true. When people write to me and ask me to recommend their tool or website to my readers, I let them know about the advantages of hiring me to review their tool or site. Since many of my posts appear on Google’s SERPs, I’ve been able to carve out an income this way.
- People sponsor guest posts on my site. They do the writing and I get paid to publish! I would recommend having criteria in place stating your word minimum, how many outbound links you allow, and so forth.
- I am a blogging coach. I teach people how to monetize their blogs and how to boost their SEO. I have 7 different blog consultation services, but those are my two most popular services. The more hours people book, the greater discount they receive.
I also make money by renting space in my sidebar and by selling my ebook, but those are the three most lucrative.
Ronald Segura (CEO & Founder of Web SEO Marketers)
Here are my top 3 choices for making money with a blog:
- Affiliate Marketing – Affiliate marketing is all about recommending products or services that you like and use to other people and getting paid for that. When you see the word “Affiliate Marketing” you might even think you’ll need to study for 4-5 years at college before you become an affiliate marketing expert, but affiliate marketing is not that complicated. Take a look at the following example: You go to a hotel for some vacations, you like the rooms and the service so you recommend it to some friends who are also going on vacation in a couple of months, that’s affiliated marketing right there, but you’re doing it for free.
- Selling my own products or services – This is actually the most profitable way of making money with a blog, you just promote your own products and services to your readers. I recently got my first SEO client thanks to my blog. Now, this is a more active way of making money with a blog because after promoting your products and services, you also need to provide those products and services to the clients.
- Advertising – Displaying ads is a very easy way to make money with a blog, but this is only profitable when you have a really high volume of traffic. I only use ads on blogs that are getting at least 50k monthly viewers, otherwise, it is really not worth your while.
David James (Digital marketing specialist)
We test different monetization models, but the following seems to work the best for us:
- Blogs that generate consultancy leads – This seems to be the most lucrative option. Visitors read the content and buy into the value that’s offered so much that they offer to hire the expert for a fee.
- Info products – We place information products within our web content to be sold. It may be lead magnets or ebooks. We typically create the products and then sell them to the visitors of our web platform.
- Affiliate links – We recommend products or services that are trusted. We get a referral fee in exchange for any purchases that are made through the link. This might be through affiliate networks such as Amazon Associates or Commission Junction.
The other tactic that we use is monetising through Ad networks. The main one is Google Adsense, however, we have tested Media.net in the past. I hope that this helps.
Raelyn Tan (Blogging & Digital Marketing Strategist @ RaelynTan.com)
The top 3 ways I make money blogging is affiliate marketing, selling my courses, and 1:1 consulting.
Firstly, I make money from affiliate marketing, where I recommend relevant products and services to my audience in my blog posts and freebies. This provides passive income for my business, as the majority of my traffic comes organically.
I also create and sell my own courses, where I get to serve my audience by providing step-by-step solutions for them to grow their website traffic and business. I combine this with strategic funnels to provide consistent sales – however, maintaining a course does take a lot of effort.
Lastly, I do a small amount of 1:1 consulting where I work directly with clients to provide a customized solution for their business – this also gives them personal support and accountability. This takes up quite a bit of time, so I limit this in order to get my clients the best results.
Nikola Roza (Founder of Nikola Roza SEO Writing)
What are the top three effective ways to make money blogging?
Uff, I’m glad the question said three. If it had been four or five I would have been in trouble, but like this- it’s all smooth sailing for me… 🙂 I say so because I’ve singled out exactly three methods of earning money online. I’ve dabbled with all three and can have my say on the subject.
- Adsense– effective because it’s fast
- Freelance SEO writing– effective because it bears fruit quickly.
- Affiliate marketing– effective because it can be the definitive answer to all money problems the aspiring blogger has.
1. Ads – set it, forget it; and…earn pennies
If you want to earn some money really fast online, then Google Adsense is the solution. Simply sign up for the program, place some banners, and, provided you get some traffic, you will get clicks. How much? I can’t tell. It depends on traffic, average CTR for your niche, ad placement, and a host of other factors.
Earning from ads – Overview
- Quick to set up,
- Easy to maintain,
- Can start earning from day one (when traffic is present).
- Very low commissions. And I mean very, very low. Plummeting even to a measly 1c per click.
Beginners who never earned a dime online think that earning online is just a pipe dream for them, an elaborate joke of others, and a divine genius and privilege of the select few. Google Adsense is by far the fastest way to force some money down their pockets and prove how wrong they are. Prove them wrong for their own good.
My pro tips:
- Place ads within the content and NOT in the sidebar. Ads in content get more clicks because they don’t stick out as much. And sidebar content is usually ignored by the savvy internet user of today.
- We said sticking out, now let’s talk about blending in. Try and design your ads to match the theme and color palette of your site. These beasts, placed within content, will get you far more clicks than normal, guaranteed.
2. Freelance writing – write your ass off for the benefit of others – but live well doing it
What is it? Freelance writing is writing content for others and charging your fair fee for it. |More clients= more work and money.
It’s simple math really. Freelance SEO writing is how I started and what I still do, though of late I’ve started to focus on my true desire for my blog – to earn passive income and live like a king, (which I’ll discuss shortly).
Earning by being a freelance writer- overview
- Low barrier to entry.
- Can earn a lot of money.
- Can build a solid reputation which then becomes a springboard for snatching much better, higher-paying clients.
- This is how freelance writing becomes a full-time, extremely rewarding job, as the earning potential is often much higher than with regular 9-5 jobs.
- Working for others
- Trading time for money
- You have to be a decent writer
My pro tip:
Depend on no one for work. Agencies treat new writers as slaves.
Instead, build your own platform:
- Buy a branded domain (your name)
- Set up a simple portfolio website built on WordPress
- Find potential clients (marketing companies)
- Send cold emails
This is how I started. the process works and here is where I learned it: https://www.locationrebel.com/seo-writing-for-beginners/
People who write well. Good content is always in demand and if you have your way with words, you can make a sweet life for yourself. One where you’ll be able to enjoy yourself and still be able to save money for your next evolution in your earning online adventure, and that is…
3. Affiliate marketing- be your own boss
The concept is disgustingly simple (and in stark contrast to the complexity of actually making it work).
This is how it works
Select a few individuals who have products they’ve developed. And many more have websites where they can help promote those products, for a percentage of earnings of course. The allure of affiliate marketing is strong, very strong.
I mean, just look at the benefits:
- Working for yourself
- Blogging about what you love
- Following your passion
- Earning while you sleep
- Near-total independence
- Unlimited potential for profits
- Genuinely help people solve problems
They are few, but they exist and are not benign.
- Takes a long time to get profitable- because Google’s code is getting harder to crack.
- Stiff competition, and more of it. Everyone wants their slice of the pie, and though there is infinite room for growth, it’s not getting any easier as time passes.
- Sometimes you lack products to promote
Anyone with a blog, because you can place links from day one. But you have to approach it with realistic expectations. No, you won’t start earning from day one. With affiliate marketing- work comes first, and profit lingers along.
Are you ready for the challenge of working hard for a few years with virtually no pay? I ask you that, but you need to be asking yourself that.
The affiliate market is the dream, but it doesn’t have to be. Approach it with careful optimism. Know that you CAN do it, and don’t stop pursuing after you’ve hit the first and second roadblocks.
What are they?
- The first one is blogging for a while and not having any traffic to show for it.
- The second one is getting traffic but not getting sales.
Keep at it! Don’t give up and keep going until you’ve hit that third crucial roadblock. What is it? Your first dollar earned and the question: How can I scale from here? Thanks for reading and I will see you on the other side:)
littledragonmedia (Founder of Web Design & Digital Marketing Agency)
There are many different ways one can make money blogging. You don’t have to be a professional copywriter to take advantage of the amazing potential on the internet. Let’s take a look at the most lucrative ways one can make money blogging.
- Sell advertising space on your blog. When you start a blog, successfully build a community around it, you’ll be in a position to sell advertising space.
- Join affiliate marketing sites like Clickbank. This is probably the most popular method – at least for me considering I see a lot of ads online about affiliate bloggers – but if you’re a blogger without products to sell this is your best route. On Clickbank or Amazon or Best Buy, you’ll be able to find products and services in niche industries and get affiliate commissions for every sale you refer from your blog.
- There are websites, editorials, blogs that offer bloggers money to guest post on their sites. Here’s a great list of sites that pay bloggers for guest post content https://www.writersincharge.com/110-websites-that-pay-writers/.