How to Monetize Your Blog
Any successful blogger will tell you that it takes a lot of time and hard work to develop a blog and gain a readership. For the majority of bloggers, the time and effort that they put into making their blog successful has to be justified by earning a stable income from it. There are a number of different ways in which you can monetize your blog, some more popular than others. From paid methods to free methods, doing some research on the different options available to you when it comes to making money from your blogging endeavors will definitely pay off in the long run.
Whether you’ve just set up a blog or have been blogging for a while and are looking to turn your hobby into a regular source of income, we’ve put together a list of some of the best and most popular ways in which you can monetize your blog.
Direct Advertising Sales
If you stopped random people in the street and asked them which they thought was the most common way for blogs to make money, the majority of people are likely to respond with ‘Banner Ads’. In theory this would be a fairly accurate answer, however it doesn’t give the whole story – banner ads are used for a variety of different reasons.
Firstly, bloggers can often use banners to promote their own products, or alternatively they could be promoting the services or products of an advertiser through banners. Many blogs also sell text links as well, although Google’s policy on selling links has made this less common.
As a blogger, you can sell advertising space directly to advertisers. In general, blog owners tend to charge advertisers a fixed fee, although some charge per thousand impressions of the ad. For example, an advertisement that has a cost per impression (CPM) rate of $3 would cost $300 for 100,000 impressions.
An alternative to selling advertising space directly to advertisers is to display ads from an advertising network. When it comes to blogging, Google Adsense is definitely the most popular option, however there are other networks available that you could use such as BurstMedia, Kontera, and Chitika.
Most advertising networks operate on a Pay Per Click (PPC) or a CPM basis, meaning that from month to month, the income that you earn from displaying ads from an advertising network will vary depending on the amount of clicks or impressions received. For most bloggers, it is recommended that advertising networks are used to fill any space that you cannot sell directly to an advertiser, and it’s a good idea to also test all avenues and not rely solely on advertising networks for your income.
Affiliate programs are offered by a number of online shops and retailers, and they will pay commission to any website owners or blog owners who are able to generate sales for them. Generally, the affiliate program will pay a set fee or a percentage of the overall sales price for any purchases that are generated through your blog.
As a blogger, you shouldn’t underestimate the potential of using affiliate links in your content, especially if your blog content is comprised largely of reviews or tutorials that could inspire a reader to buy a related product. However, you may also want to consider adding a disclaimer on your blog to inform readers that you may be using affiliate links from time to time – the vast majority of readers will not have an issue with this, as they know that it will support your blog.
Membership websites and e-books are not the only ones to make profits from premium content, because as a blogger you could also consider charging readers to view your best blog posts or articles. If your blog is centered around a specialized subject you may also consider writing an e-book or creating an e-book from a selection of your best articles that you can sell to readers, if you think that will be a preferable option for them rather than paying to read content. Using a content recommendation network could be useful for this option of monetizing your blog.
Depending on the main subject of your blog, you may be able to open an online store in order to sell products to your readers. This is an extremely popular option for craft bloggers, who often sell their handmade products to interested readers. You could also sell other merchandise or items bearing your blog’s logo for die-hard fans.
If you’d like to add anything to this list, we’d love to hear from you in the comments.