how-do-bloggers-make-money

How Do Bloggers Make Money?

Blogging is a prevalent and well-established practice, with popular blogging platform WordPress powering many websites on the internet. While a few successful bloggers really make money, those who do usually monetize through affiliate marketing, Google AdSense (or other advertising platforms), sponsorships, memberships, or selling their own digital and physical products.

Affiliate marketing

affiliate-marketing
Affiliate marketing describes the process whereby an affiliate earns a commission for selling the products of another person or company. Here, the affiliate is simply an individual who is motivated to promote a particular product through incentivization. The business whose product is being promoted will gain in terms of sales and marketing from affiliates.

Affiliate marketing and blogging have a long and successful relationship. 

Why? Because bloggers love to write about things that interest them and then recommend products to others. These recommendations usually take the form of an in-text link in which a tracking code is embedded.

When a visitor clicks the link and makes a purchase, the blogger receives a commission for each sale. For those participating in the Amazon affiliate program, bloggers receive a commission on any item a visitor purchases after clicking their link. For example, someone may click on an affiliate link for a coffee machine but then decide they want to buy sporting equipment instead.

Affiliate marketing enables you to earn a commission for promoting the products/services of another company or person on your blog.

The majority of my online income comes through affiliate marketing.

The main goal of affiliate marketing is to offer value that would benefit the readers and then promote relevant affiliate products.

It is an easy way to make money blogging as you don’t need to create your own product, instead promote other affiliate products relevant to your blog content.

I would strongly recommend you first go by affiliate marketing route, before creating your suite of products pouring in the efforts.

If you are wondering how affiliate marketing works, here’s how:

  • An advertiser or company agrees to give you a specific commission when a customer makes the sale of their product or service through your site.
  • Your site will contain links that will direct the reader to the website of the seller where they can make their purchase. Affiliate links can be placed directly in your content, or you could use banner ads.
  • Once the reader uses the affiliate link to buy a product or service, you will get a percentage of that purchase.

Research: The first step is to do extensive research to identify which products you want to promote. You are most likely to know which niche to focus on after checking out competitor sites and doing your due diligence.

Overall, research will help you identify a profitable niche that is going to make you money consistently.

If you already have a niche, you need to identify the top-performing pages on your site and look for places where you can promote your affiliate products.

Marketplaces: An affiliate marketplace is a site that connects advertisers and other vendors with affiliates. The marketplace is responsible for establishing easy communication channels, making affiliate links and payment processes more efficient.

If you are looking for products to promote, here are the best affiliates marketplaces that will give you access to numerous affiliate products:

  • ClickBank: ClickBank is very popular and is a great place to look for affiliate niches. They have digital offerings like online courses and e-books which somehow do better than physical products.
  • JVZoo: If you are in the internet marketing niche, you can consider exploring products on JVZoo.
  • Amazon Associates: If you review Amazon products on your blog, you can get started by joining the Amazon associates program.

There are also various other affiliate marketing marketplaces like ShareASale, CJ, Impact, and other in-house affiliates.

If a product owner does not have a publicly announced affiliate program, you can always reach out to them, and the chances of them set you up a private affiliate program will be more.

Google Adsense

Google Adsense is another blogging monetization staple still effective today. 

Bloggers sign up to the Google Adsense platform and then insert code into various places on their blog. The code serves targeted ads which a visitor can click on and earn the blogger revenue via the cost-per-click CPC model

The exact fee earned for every click depends on the advertiser and the keyword being targeted. Keywords (and by extension content) related to lawyers, insurance, mortgages, credit cards, and loans tend to attract the highest fees.

Advertising

One of the most common ways to make money is through advertising on your blog.

This is the most preferred revenue stream for first time bloggers because it is relatively easy and does not require copywriting skills.

Google AdSense is one of the easiest pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platforms. This program is also popular for placing the CPM Ads.

With Google AdSense, you need to put the banner on your site and Google will display ads that are most relevant to your site.

You’ll not have direct contact with the advertisers, but you can earn passive income—especially if your blog grows its readership and authority.

To increase your ad earnings, find your way to Adwords and check the cost-per-click of the keywords.

The key is to know how the competition is and how much the click costs.

This way, you will identify some worthwhile keywords that marketers pay high for, target them in your blog posts and thus boost your ad earnings.

In the blogging world, sponsored content involves a company paying a writer to create content around a product or brand. Writers may be compensated for articles, photography, videos, social media posts, emails, or all of the above.

In terms of the content itself, sponsored posts may look very similar to affiliate marketing posts. Both strategies describe a blogger using influence, voice, or authority to sell a product. While bloggers must now publicly disclose any relationship they have with a company, sponsored content is seen as less obtrusive than typical forms of website advertising.

Website flipping

Some bloggers also make money by purchasing websites and then selling them for a profit. Online marketplaces such as Flippa connect blog owners with entrepreneurs who want to invest in digital real estate. 

Blogs with consistent and demonstratable revenue or traffic typically fetch the highest prices in these marketplaces. Selling websites with rare or desirable domain names can also make bloggers a lot of money.

Memberships

Content management systems such as WordPress allow bloggers to make money by charging readers access to exclusive content.

Essentially, this content is hidden from free users and unlocked once they pay for access. Membership content can be any content providing exceptional value relative to free content. It may include membership forums, training programs, video consults, personalized advice, or job boards.

Online Courses

Are you an expert in a particular field or you have a skill that you can confidently teach to other people?

You will be surprised at how many people are willing to pay to learn from your skills or expertise.

There is no better way to monetize your skill and share your knowledge than through online courses. Because, once you setup your course funnel, it’s more or less a passive income.

Some great platforms that you can use for your online course creation include Udemy and Teachable.

Once you identify a skill you want to teach, you need to research the course ideas, determine the angle, and validate the idea with your prospect students. This will help you ensure a target audience for that course.

Info Products

Are you looking to make a large profit margin with your blog?

If so, then you need to consider information products. Information products involve selling information or knowledge through eBooks or online courses. It requires less initial investment compared to creating say SaaS or physical products.

As a blogger, you probably have a lot of knowledge in a specific field. You can make money by turning this information into a product. Even if you don’t have a unique skill, you can begin with something you are passionate about.

You can choose to sell information products digitally through some platforms like Teachable, Thinkific or Udemy. You can also consider offering your readers to download it from your site. No matter what platform you use, learn the basics of online sales funnels as they are a great way to sell info products from your blog systematically for maximum conversions and effectiveness.

Sponsored posts are, without a doubt, one of the best ways to earn money through blogging. Though very profitable, not many bloggers talk about it.

What is a sponsored post?

Well, a sponsored post is a content you write regarding the brand or product/services of a company, and they pay a fee for that.

A vital tip is to stay true to your audience when publishing sponsored posts and ensure that they provide real value to your readers. As long as you provide genuine value to the readers and adopt an SEO strategy to get ongoing organic traffic, you’re good to go.

Examples of Bloggers Making Money With Blogging

Pat Flynn

Pat Flynn is the owner of Smart Passive Income. He teaches readers proven strategies to optimize their online businesses for passive income.

When he was fired from his job in 2008, he used his knowledge from the LEED exam to launch an eBook and created an info product.

He then began his Smart Passive Income blog where he talks about passive income and shares his experiences.

Smart Passive Income has become very successful over the years thanks to affiliate marketing and selling info products. Also, recently, he launched the Smart Podcast player, which generated $9,646.70 in December 2017.

In the same month, 25% of revenue was collected from course sales while 63% came from advertising.

He regularly publishes his income reports on his blog.

Also read: How Does Pat Flynn Make Money? The Smart Passive Income Business Model Explained

Alex and Lauren from Create and Go

If you are one of those people who believe that blogging generates no money, then you have not heard of Alex and Lauren.

These two are the founders of Avocadu and Create and Go which generate revenue of $75,000 a month.

Initially, Alex was a personal trainer, and Lauren was an accountant.

However, they were both dissatisfied with corporate life, and this is when they decided to try an online business.

Currently, this couple makes money from their blogs through the selling of their eBooks and courses.

They also generate revenue through ads and affiliate marketing. The couple also attests to the power of Pinterest which has helped their sites grow further.

Kristin Larsen from Believe in a Budget

Kristin Larsen is the author of Believe in A Budget and co-creator of Pinterest Presence.

In 2015, Larsen began her blog Believe in A Budget which is a personal finance site.

The blog made under $100,000 in the first year. However, this changed when she started using Pinterest, and the monthly page views of her blog drastically increased from 5000 to 230,000.

Kristin managed to achieve success because of multiple income streams.

Her income comes from affiliate marketing, ads, and courses. She also sells her products and gets traffic through Pinterest and Google.

Bottom line

Whether you are passionate about writing or you are trying to earn a living from blogging, the above tips and examples come in handy.

Just find what works best for you, your blog readers and what doesn’t.

Also, be sure to build a relationship with other bloggers, sponsors, and affiliate marketers to develop your network which is your net worth and further promote your blog.

I hope you found this post helpful. If you have any doubts, make sure you leave them in the comments section.

Key takeaways:

  • Blogging is a popular and evergreen way to make money on the internet and comes in many forms. 
  • Affiliate marketing allows bloggers to earn a commission when a reader purchases through their link. They can also earn money through Google Adsense.
  • Sponsored posts are also a desirable option as many blog readers become increasingly sensitive to traditional forms of blog advertising. Blogs with traffic and/or revenue can also be sold in online marketplaces to entrepreneurs who want a ready-made solution.

Read Now: Top 12 Business Ideas with Low Investment and High Profit, Business Startup Ideas To Launch.

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Gennaro Cuofano

Gennaro is the creator of FourWeekMBA which reached over a million business students, executives, and aspiring entrepreneurs in 2020 alone | He is also Head of Business Development for a high-tech startup, which he helped grow at double-digit rate | Gennaro earned an International MBA with emphasis on Corporate Finance and Business Strategy | Visit The FourWeekMBA BizSchool | Or Get The FourWeekMBA Flagship Book "100+ Business Models"