How to Make Money from Blogging?

Image by owenwbrown under CC license on Flickr

Image by owenwbrown under CC license on Flickr

Working hard is not just the key to success; it’s also about working smart. This is the new mantra. No wonder a lot of people are turning to getting home-based jobs. Success is not just limited to climbing the corporate ladder; it’s enjoying what you do as well as earning from it. One very popular occupation now is being a blogger.

The perks of being a blogger are a lot. First off, you can blog anywhere, anytime, provided you have access to the internet. But there’s still that question of how do you earn from it? I compiled some ways on how to earn from blogging to give you guys a more comprehensive explanation on this frequently asked question.

Some of the ways to earn from blogging are through:

  • Advertising
  • Sponsorship
  • Affiliate Programs
  • Donations/Tips
  • Flipping Blogs
  • Selling Services
  • Selling Info Products

Advertising

Let’s talk about one of the simplest and classic forms of money-generation, advertising. How do you earn from this? You sell advertising space on your blog.

Banner Ads - Image by Daniel Oines under CC on Flicker

Banner Ads – Image by Daniel Oines under CC on Flicker

There are several options; the most popular among bloggers are Google AdSense and YPN. These are contextual advertising, meaning these programs scan the content of your blog to know its topic and then put contextually relevant ads onto the blog. These programs are easy to use since you would only need to paste some code into your blog’s templates. It’s in a pay per click basis. When your readers click on the ads, you earn.

This type of advertising is great for niche-focus blogs especially if the blog has a commercial angle, like offering products and services. However, if your blog has a more general topic it may confuse AdSense.

Another way to earn from advertising is by attracting Direct Advertisers to place Ads in your blog. How? First off, let advertisers know you are open to the idea by having an “Advertise with us” banner on your site. Make sure the banner links to an advertising information page so that the advertisers would have an easy way to contact you for more information and rates.

Also, keep the ads relevant to your blog and to your readers. If you are talking about gardening, avoid wallpaper ads. This also applies to your blog topic. Be consistent so that advertisers would also know if they are a good fit for your site. Make sure to show your site’s statistics and your user demographics information as well.

Don’t forget to have an “About Us” section. This would give your readers and advertisers a clear explanation of who you are and what’s your site is all about.

 

Sponsorship

Apart from advertising programs, bloggers are also looking into finding their own advertisers or sponsors. This is also a great way to find other options for private deals.

CMO Mobile Summit - Registration Fee costs Php 11K - An event that I attended for FREE as a Blogger

CMO Mobile Summit – Registration Fee costs Php 11K – An event that I attended for FREE as a Blogger

The secret here is to select advertisers based on your niche. Bloggers can offer them several ads like banner ads, buttons, text links, mentions in newsletters and even individual post sponsorships.

One of the prevalent sponsorship practices here in the Philippines is often seen in Lifestyle-niche blogs. These are sponsored blog posts when companies would sponsor bloggers on the products/services. Filipino bloggers are also invited to cover events in their blogs.

I highly recommend clearly pointing out to your readers which are the sponsored posts in your blog. This way, you can maintain your integrity and credibility online.

 

Affiliate Programs

Another way of earning on blogs is through affiliate programs. Affiliate program is when you take a commission for referring a reader who purchases a product or service from a company. A lot of websites have affiliate programs; the most notable is Amazon. Other affiliate programs include, Commission Junction, Linkshare, and Clickbank.

Once source of income online specially with blogging is Affiliate Marketing – Image by YooGaming under CC license on Flicker

Affiliate programs can take some work but it can be very lucrative especially if you are able to match the right program with the right blog/topic. Here are some tips to get the best out of the affiliate programs.

1. Your audience comes first – Put yourself in your readers’ shoes and consider what they want when they browse through your blog. Ask yourself, what products they would be interested in? Just make sure to consider your readers first.

2. Genuine recommendation and personal endorsements work – Being genuine always works. Your readers will sense if you are selling, so don’t. Recommend products that you truly believe in; remember, your credibility is on the line here.

3. Link to quality products – All buyers want quality products so make sure you link to one. If you link to a poor-quality product, chances are your readers won’t trust you again the next time you endorse a product.

4. Links position and relevance – When using affiliate links, make sure that they are relevant to your blog’s topic and even in the posts you will put them. Similarly to ads placement, the position of your affiliate links are important as well since it will affect the chances and number of people who would click it.

5. Be trust-worthy – Don’t mislead your readers into clicking links so that you would earn. Inform readers that you have an affiliate program and that some of the links might give you additional earnings. Some bloggers place a separate disclosure page informing readers of their affiliate links and sponsors. Meanwhile, others place a note beside or under the affiliate links to let readers know about them.

6. Track results – Like any business, you need to track results on your affiliate links. Most affiliate programs have a tracking or statistics package so you can see which links are more effective. This can help you plan your affiliate strategies in the future.

 

Donations/Tips

According to Problogger.net, “A very small number of blogs have a history of making good money with these (donations/tips).” A blog must first have a large and loyal readership for this to be successful. He even mentioned, “most bloggers just don’t have the critical mass or the cult following to make it work.”

Tips and Donations - Image by YooGaming under CC license on Flicker

Tips and Donations – Image by Aaron Stidwell under CC license on Flicker

I believe that one way for this to really work is if the blogger is pushing for a certain advocacy and invites his reader to join or help the cause.

This strategy has a low rate of success and I would suggest turning to other means.

 

Flipping Blogs

Flipping blogs is simply put selling blogs. Flipping is successful when a blog becomes valuable online due to its large following. This is an uncommon strategy for bloggers but is an option.

One very successful example of flipping blogs is when Weblogs Inc was sold to AOL for a reported $25 million. Meanwhile, there have been cases of smaller blogs being sold privately or through auctions on sites like eBay and SitePoint.

Image by Images Money under CC license on Flickr

Image by Images Money under CC license on Flickr

Now, you may think of starting up a blog and aiming to sell it in the future. I discourage that. I recommend building a blog with the intention of offering valuable content and have a large leadership. This has more potential of attracting future buyers.

 

Selling Services

This I would say is my current favorite because this is how I currently earn from my main blog. This blog is part of my Content Marketing Strategy in promoting my Digital Marketing Services Business.

Once you have been recognized as an authority on your blog’s topic, your followers would soon ask for your professional services. Other services may include being a consultant, offline writer, and other online writing opportunities.

I get most of my income by Selling my Outsourcing Services through my blog

I get most of my income by Selling my Outsourcing Services through my blog

Blogging can also pave way to other business ventures and even an invitation to speaking engagements. I have experience in being invited to several internet marketing-related seminars to talk about blogging and online marketing.

This is a great opportunity to leverage your services outside the online world.

 

Selling Info Products

Bloggers may also consider selling info products like Ebooks, audio programs, and softwares. The success of selling info products depend on the field or topic you focus on.

Info products can be in form of ebooks, audiobooks or video - Image by Christine und Hagen Graf under CC license on Flickr

Info products can be in form of ebooks, audiobooks or video – Image by Christine und Hagen Graf under CC license on Flickr

Again, this also depends on once you are considered as an authority or expert, which means, you need loyal following to pull this off. Don’t get me wrong, you can sell info products even if you’re just starting out, but the chance of success is slim compared to having an established voice online.

The good thing about it is once your info products are unique and fresh, you readers would definitely come back for more. I suggest selling info products that deal with problem solving and how-to.

Selling information products is one revenue strategy that I’ve always wanted to incorporate in my business model. I’m currently brewing my first info-product and hope to launch it before end of this year. ☺

 

As discussed there are numerous ways to earn by blogging. But this really requires work and time. Successfully penetrating the blogging industry is not a walk in the park, but once you plan it right and do the work, the result is fruitful.

In order to be a successful blogger, you must treat it as a business and dedicate time on it. Expect to work hard and long hours especially when starting out. But most importantly it’s all about building relationships and providing valuable content to attract readers and turn them into loyal followers. Be the credible expert your readers see you to be. Problogger.net suggests to “Be proactive in your blogging and lead the conversation rather than just react to it.”

Experimenting on different strategies is also key to know which will work and won’t for your blog. Truth is, the only way you would find out is to try things out.

Happy Blogging!