People blog for different reasons. But what I have found common is the fact that many of us are trying one or more website monetizing strategies.
Let’s examine some of these widely used money making methods and see which of these is the best fit for your blog.
From one niche to the other, things are different and we must understand it. People in different industries and different age groups have different approaches. If we know this, it will help us in our effort to make money blogging.
There are however methods that will work across the board. Though this is an indisputable fact, doing things differently is bound to generate different results.
What Are The Different Ways Bloggers Make Money?
I have written an exhaustive article on 15 different ways bloggers make money. While you may want to check the post out, we will be dwelling on the most common of these methods.
Remember the essence of this post is to demonstrate that bloggers make money in different ways. And at the same time, not every method works for everyone.
So here are the most used channels:
- Affiliate Marketing
- Banner space sales
- Sponsored posts
- Link sales
- Selling own products/services
- Contextual Ads
Basically, without taking it far, these are some of the ways you see around and each of these can be a whole book to write.
Doing All At Once On A Single Blog
Now, I just listed 6 different ways to monetize a blog. Well, did I leave out Adsense? No because that falls within Contextual advertising. Chances are that anything else you think of is embodied in these broad topics.
Doing all of these on your website at once may sound crazy at some point but my problem is really not about how many of these methods should be used at once. You may also appear desperate if every space on your blog is taken up by some money making element.
Most of the top blogs you can think of, especially those classed on the list of top earning blogs limit themselves to a few monetizing strategies. They identify what works best for them, focus on it and become experts.
But Which Of These Works Best For You?
There is no one-size-fit-all method I can recommend. However, these 6 are just some of the methods I know can work for everyone. We will look into some details hoping this will guide you in picking the best choice.
Before diving into it, allow me quickly say something about Google Adsense, which is the best Contextual Ads platform recommended by many out there.
I have tried this on several different blogs. But at the moment I’m writing this post, it is not found on any of my sites. Meaning I have completely gotten rid of it for the following reasons:
- I blog in the Make money online niche. Adsense is relatively poor in this niche
- My blogs don’t get 50k page views per day yet
- Most of my traffic is from India where PPC amount is miserably small
If we look at income reports for most of our blogging friends, Adsense is at the bottom if classed in other of amounts. I know the Google’s new AutoAds feature has remarkably improved earnings for most of us. That notwithstanding, it still remains a percentage of their initial earnings.
This means a 50% increase in earnings doesn’t instantly mean a $500 increase. It could be 50% of $10 which just takes you $5 up.
The best way to know what works for you is to try out different methods
6 Money Making Methods To Chose From
1. Affiliate Marketing
Sometimes I get scared to think that Affiliate Marketing works well for everyone. But I really think it should because every industry has products for us to promote and earn commissions.
The only problem here is the fact that some bloggers have deliberately refused to think. All they do is copy banner scripts and paste on their blogs and hope for clicks to convert to commissions.
Competition is becoming more fierce. People are becoming more inundated with information. Banner blindness is getting more widespread. This means folks these days really need help to find and purchase what they want.
Yes! You need to help your readers beyond pasting banners on your blog and simply writing affiliate review posts or creating links. If you help your readers see the need for the product you promote, you bring them closer to a buying decision. That’s making you closer to earning a commission as well.
Affiliate marketing must be done differently. You need to think and add things that make your strategies stand out. The products you promote are being promoted by others. Why should someone buy from your link?
Well, before you move on, I recommend you check out this article I wrote on a new approach to affiliate marketing. You may find it helpful at some point.
So many bloggers are making it big with Affiliate Marketing
I’m not going to go too far. Take a look at Matthew’s income reports here. Affiliate Marketing is the master. If you need more evidence, step over to Pat Flynn’s income report. The examples are just every where. Affiliate Marketing works for almost every marketer.
Will this also work for you? Have you given it a try?
2. Selling Ad Space
Advertisers still buy space on active websites today . Take a look at buysellads.com and other similar sites. You will understand there is a big market for this model. But how much money you make with this will hugely depend on two factors:
- The quantity of targeted traffic you get
- The Geo location of your readers.
I have sold space on different websites. But the best property that generated the most earnings has not been the one with the most traffic.
Advertisers do their research and as it’s said, stats don’t lie. Once you are able to pull targeted traffic from areas with high purchasing power, you can always sell space on your blog.
If you get traffic from the United States, Canada and some European countries, you could be standing a chance to make some good earnings selling space on your blog.
– Using a 3rd party platform
There are platform like BSA, adclerks.com, etc, that make it easy to manage ads on your blog and collect payment from advertisers easily. What generally happens is that these platforms provide some code snippet for you to paste on your blog:
One downside of these platforms is that some cut a reasonable share of your sales. Though they have the market where your property could be found easily, they also decide how much fees you pay per sale.
In the past, I sold space on Adclerks. My first sale of $50 landed $37 in my Paypal account. That was a $13 charge on that sale. Are you comfortable with that? Please drop a comment.
Some of the platforms too are so demanding in terms of minimum requirements. Generally, you will need 20k monthly pageviews to be approved. For the most part, if your blog is less popular, you won’t be able to find your way on them.
– Using self-hosted solutions
If you don’t want your earnings shared with any third party platform, you may want to manage your ads on your blog. This isn’t something you can easily handle without the help of dedicated ad management scripts. Oiopublisher is a commonly used script that makes it easy for WordPress users.
This helps you manage you ads and collect payment from advertisers. If you use a script to run ads, your property may not get the exposure you would get as being on a popular marketplace. Whatever the case, you have to decide.
3. Sponsored Articles
I have seen many big blogs do well with this form of advertisement. Generally, there are two approaches to this method:
- The advertiser does the writing and you just publish.
- The advertiser provides the keyword or product details for you the blog owner to write the content.
Again, the price per article will depend on your blog’s popularity, who does the content and of course your power to bargain.
Advertisers have principally three reasons to sponsor content on your blog:
- To get access to your community with the hope to make some sales.
- To promote their brands to your market.
- To get some link juice for SEO benefits.
Advertisers who want the backlink for SEO ranking boost would always insist on having a dofollow link from your content. While the pay package may be interesting, it is at the same time a danger if you rely on Google for some amount of organic traffic. If the search giant finds out (by some means) you were paid for the dofollow link, your site may get penalized.
What about disclaiming paid advertising on your blog?
Some advertisers frown on disclaimers. They want the endorsement to be “natural”. You know when the motivation behind an article is financial, it may compromise the value of the product and the FTC is adamant on that.
4. Selling Your Own Products
Everyone online can own a product these days. It doesn’t matter the level of your expertise. If you can only have a profitable product idea, the next step would be to hire the required skills to get your product developed.
Once your product is consumable, you can sell it on your blog and other marketplaces. This just tells you selling your own product on your blog is a pretty nice way to monetize your blog.
5. Contextual Ads
There is a lot of money to be made with this method. However, it doesn’t simply flow as some paint it to be. Monetizing your blog this way has some intricacies. Whether you are Google Adsense, Media.net or any other platform, you need to give yourself to a learning curve.
I vehemently discourage this especially if your blog is new. Focus on building an audience and think affiliate marketing as you grow. However, this may depend on the niche you are in.
6. Link Sales
People are still making money selling links on their blogs.
I regularly get mails from some backlink mongers who offer to pay me $XX,X just to link to their website from within my blog. This looks like incredible source of quick money. Oh Yes it is. But it could also be a rope around your neck if the links are meant to pass PageRank.
Of course no one is ready to pay for a backlink if it’s not a dofollow link for some SEO ranking benefits. But Google frowns at this and considers it part of a link scheme, a violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.
Which Of This Is The Best Way To Monetize Your Blog?
I highly recommend testing these methods out to find which of them gets the best results for you. Once you’ve found out your biggest earner, rinse it and repeat.
Don’t forget the implications of any method you settle on. For instance, selling links may be very profitable but this can land your blog into trouble with the search giant.
I know of blogs on which you are never going to find any form of advertising. Probably, they know what works for them the most. It’s not a weakness that they don’t accept sponsored posts or sell banner space. It’s a manner of strategy. Find yours and make it work for you.
Do Things Differently
Once you’ve found out what works for you, do it differently. Adding a special tough is likely to generate more results.
Some bloggers copy & paste. Of course that’s why their results are mediocre. In this post on Sue Dunlevie’s blog, I discuss how to do things differently and stand out. You may want to check that out for more tips on how to grow your blogging income.
Let me know what you think in the comment box.