You’ll find lots of information on the internet if you search for “how to make a living blogging”. Unfortunately, most of the advice you will get from well-intentioned gurus won’t be accurate or complete and will only guide you to mediocrity. Worst case, you could end up with dismal results.
You must treat your blog as a business to make it profitable. Choose the most effective monetization strategies and market your business effectively. It is important to monitor and analyze your results and make adjustments when necessary.
This is the Ultimate Guide to Making Money from Blogging
Since nearly a decade, I have been a blogger and a business growth consultant for bloggers. My marketing experience spans over two decades. This ultimate guide to blogging success will show you how to make money. The real drivers behind blogging success will be revealed to you. This guide will show you how to make a living from blogging and even generate millions of dollars through blogging (as Fit Small Business did).
Your blog should be treated as a business.
Bloggers who are successful don’t “wing it” but create a business plan that will guide them to success. The top bloggers know the importance of choosing a profitable niche and investing in the right resources. They research their niche and the competition. They then provide the best solutions for their audience’s problems.
The Learning Herbs blog generates about $20,000 per month. Source: CreateAndGo.com
Invest in the Right Resources
Although you don’t have to spend a lot to start a blog, it is unlikely that you will ever be able to make a lot of money from it. Investing in time-saving and profitability-boosting blogging resources is one of the best ways to set yourself up for blogging success.
Create your blog on a reliable, flexible platform
WordPress powers more websites than any other website builder. The builder has a wide range of themes and flexible plugins for WordPress so it is easy to create any type blog, even if you have limited technical knowledge.
Bluehost is a trusted WordPress hosting solution. Bluehost is trusted by millions of users for its reliable and secure hosting services.
Make time and money by using the Time-&-Money-Saving Blogging Tool
What if you had a hammer, a saw and all the tools necessary to build a house? You wouldn’t. Don’t attempt to create a blog using a limited set of tools.
These are some resources and tools that you can add to your blog toolbox.
- Writing Tools Use grammar improvement tools like Grammarly, ProWritingAid or WhiteSmoke to ensure that your blog content is error-free.
- Ecommerce tools: If you want to monetize your website with physical or digital products you will need an eCommerce tool such as Shopify, Ecwid or WooCommerce.
- Editorial and Project Management Tools: Use tools such as Trello and the Co-Schedule blog calendar to manage your blogging projects.
- Payment Processing Tools Accept payments on your blog via Square Payments, PayPal or Stripe
- Image Editing Tools: You’ll need to create images and edit them for your blog. PicMonkey, Canva or Placeit are some options.
- Building your email database is crucial to blogging success. Use popular name-capture software like OptinMonster and Smart Bar by SumoMe.
- Email Marketing Tools Contact your blog audience by email using email marketing software such as Constant Contact, Drip or Converkit.
- Social sharing tools: Let your readers share your content with tools like Sumo and Social Warfare.
There are many tools that can be used to help you blog. There are many tools that can help you with running your blog. You’ll often find the best solutions when you ask other bloggers in blogging Facebook Groups and online blogger forums.
Do not hesitate to outsource
Many business owners don’t have the necessary skills to build their businesses. Bloggers aren’t experts in writing, graphic design and editing. Bloggers who are interested in business building should do the same thing as smart business owners: Focus on what you know best and outsource all the rest.
These are some outsourcing and freelancer websites that you can use to complete a variety of blogging tasks:
- Fiverr –This marketplace offers affordable solutions to all kinds of blogging tasks including logo design and blog article writing.
- Upwork All types of freelancers are available on Upwork, starting from the beginner to the advanced.
- Freelancer.com Hire freelancers for your blog projects on Freelancer.com.
- Problogger Job Board Search for freelancers who specialize in blogging projects via the Problogger Job Board.
Many successful bloggers have a list of freelancers that they can call on for different blogging projects. A virtual assistant (VA) can also be hired by many bloggers. This is a great way for you to do simple tasks on an ongoing basis. You don’t even need to assign projects to your VA.
Analyze Your Market and Your Competition
Selecting a profitable niche is an important step to creating a blog that makes money. You need to be familiar with the market you are operating in, the audience you serve, and the competition in your niche. You will be more likely to create unique content that will impress your readers and keep them coming back.
Give the Best Solution to Your Audience’s Problems
If you give generic advice that isn’t helpful to your audience, or that they can find elsewhere, blogging won’t be able to make a living. You must stand out from other bloggers who are trying to grab your attention. Your ideal audience will find better solutions and more value elsewhere.
Remember that the visitors coming to your blog are there for a reason. They have a question they need answered. They have problems that they need to solve. The better you are at moving your audience from where they are to where they want to be, the more successful your blog will be.
A blog content strategy is essential to ensure that you are providing your audience with the best content. This will help you create blog posts that are relevant to your audience. You will be able to avoid creating irrelevant, unprofitable content that doesn’t add value to your blog.
While great content is the most important aspect of creating a user-friendly blog, there are many other things you can do. Your blog should load quickly. Make it easy to understand your blog’s purpose and use intuitive navigation to make it easy for visitors to find what you’re looking.
Make sure you create an exceptional experience for your blog visitors; it’s key to growing blog profits. Source: Podia.com
The Right Blog Monetization Techniques
A blog built without a monetization plan, is a bad idea. This is why most new bloggers fail. You already know that your blog is a business and you need to think about how your blog will generate consistent income. There are many ways you can make a living blogging, and some are more lucrative than others.
While some monetization methods require you to put in a lot of work, such as creating custom products or online courses, the potential profits can be tremendous. Some monetization techniques are quick and easy, such as joining an advertising network. However, you will typically only earn modest returns if your blog traffic is less than 25,000 pages per month.
It’s possible to monetize your website even if you have low traffic. Multi-monetization is a key strategy for bloggers who are highly successful.
Tap into the Money-Making Power of Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing allows bloggers to make money by promoting other products and services. Every time your blog readers make an action, you receive a commission. This is typically making a purchase. However, depending on the agreement, it could also be filling out forms or simply clicking over to the third-party‘s website.
Affiliate marketing is easy to start. Affiliate marketing is a major source of income for top bloggers. It can bring in 40% to 60% of their revenues. Even if you are a beginner blogger, affiliate marketing is possible.
Affiliate programs can make bloggers a few dollars per month, while others can earn hundreds or even thousands. Affiliate marketing can be a great way to make a living, especially if your products and services are well-received.
These are the top affiliate networks and programs you should be looking into:
- Rakuten Marketing (Formerly Linkshare).
- CJ Affiliate
- Flex Offers
- Amazon Associates
- eBay Partner Network
- Affiliate Window (AWIN).
- Target Affiliates (perfect if you love Target)
This list is only a small selection of the most popular programs, but there are many companies that offer affiliate programs. Look into whether the product owner has an affiliate program if you find a product that is perfect for your blog audience.
You can also join programs such as Viglink and Skimlinks if you aren’t interested in working directly with merchants and affiliate networks. These programs allow you to tap into the power and potential of affiliate marketing. However, rather than joining just one merchant program, Skimlinks or Viglink scan your blog content, and create links to affiliate programs for product owners. If you have a lot to mention on your blog, this batch-style process can help you save a lot time.
Lifestyle blogger Blair Staky made over $9,000 in February 2020, and over $5,000 of that came from affiliate marketing. Source: blairstaky.com
You can sell digital and physical products on your blog
Your blog can be monetized by selling physical or digital products . These products can be created by you or acquired through a third party.
These are just a few of the products that you can sell through your blog.
- This is a very popular and simple way to create and publish e-books.
- Branded products such as planners and mugs
- Original art including paintings, drawings and prints.
- Software and apps
- Meal-prep plans
- Plans for fitness
- Guides, checklists and planners that you can download
- Templates for social media or graphics
- Subscription boxes
- Private label products
- Audio recordings, such as meditations and original music, are available
- Stock photos
- Handmade products
You can create an online store on your blog to get selling quickly. Make sure the products you sell are relevant to your blog audience. Otherwise, you will only see minimal returns.
Selling products through your blog can make you a few hundred dollars to several thousand each month. It all depends on what products you sell and how well you market them.
Blogger Sarah Titus earns more than seven figures a year selling printable downloads on her blog and Shopify store. Source: sarahtitus.com
Advertise to make money from your blog
Many bloggers who are just starting out see bloggers with experience incorporating ads to their blogs and conclude that this is a great way for them to make money blogging. Advertising is a great way to make money online, but it won’t make you rich.
Advertising is great, especially if it’s done through a third party advertising network. You can simply add the code to your website and forget about it. After the code has been installed, you can simply sit back and enjoy passive income month after month from these ads. It’s simple money.
Advertising has a downside. You need to have a lot traffic to make money. Some ad networks won’t accept you until your monthly page views average between 25,000 and 30,000. You may still only make a few hundred dollars a month from advertising. Bloggers who use advertising to monetize their websites also use other monetization methods.
These are the top advertising networks that you should check out:
- Google AdSense
- RevenueHits from Intango
To negotiate advertising agreements for your blog, you can also contact product and service providers directly. Although this is more time-consuming, it often leads to a higher level of advertising income.
Add information to your blog about how you can contact you for advertising information. This information is usually located in the footer. A ratecard for advertising or a media kit could be created for your blog.
The Endless Meal Blog has over 430,000 pages views per month and makes about $5,800 or 83% of its income from advertising on the AdThrive network. Source: theendlessmeal.com
Bloggers can make a living by posting sponsored posts on their blogs and social media. You could make as much as several hundred dollars per sponsored post depending on how popular your blog is. For top bloggers, with large followings, you can charge thousands of dollars per post.
Joining influencer networks is one of the best ways to find sponsorship opportunities. These networks allow bloggers to connect with brands and handle all details of the project and payment.
These are some popular influencer marketing platforms that you should explore:
- Activate via Bloglovin’
- Co-operate (for bloggers who are travel writers)
- Aspire IQ
- Everywhere Influencer Market Agency
Reaching out directly to business owners and brands can help you secure sponsored posts. Be sure to show the value that you can bring to the table by being a blogger influencer to a dedicated audience.
The Savvy Couple blog has grown its average income to as high as $43,547 per month; Sponsorships account for 61% of the blog’s income.
Earn Money by Taking Online Courses
Online courses can be a great way to make a living as a blogger. Popular courses make it possible for top bloggers to earn six- or seven-figures per year. Although you might not be able to make these kinds of income right away, if you’re good at building an audience on your blog and creating relevant online courses, this monetization method could provide a steady stream of income.
Blogger Michelle Schroeder-Gardner, the founder of the Making Sense of Cents blog, has earned more than a half-million dollars from her popular courses.
Use your blog to promote professional services
You can also make money blogging by offering consulting, coaching, and other professional services. Your blog can be used to increase your credibility and position you as an expert in your field. You can then offer your services to others who are interested in your extensive knowledge and experience.
Selling services can make you a lot of money. It all depends on the type of service you provide, your experience and how much you value your services. A freelance copywriter might make $50-$95 an hour while executive coaches who are highly paid can charge $250-$750 per hour.
The Club Thrifty blog earned more than $400,00 in 2019 from freelance writing income alone. Source: clubthrifty.com
Events and Paid Speaking Opportunities
You can make a living blogging if you are a showman or a motivational speaker. Hosting your own events, such as webinars, seminars and retreats, can help you make a lot of money.
You can make a lot of money as a speaker. You could make even more as an event facilitator, speaker, or promoter.
If you have the right topic, the right audience size, and a compelling line-up for speakers, live events can bring in six figures. The cost of producing a large-scale, in-person event can easily run into the hundreds or even thousands of dollars. This means that this monetization strategy is not feasible for all bloggers.
If you don’t have the financial resources or desire to attend a large conference, there are alternatives. You can host an online event for free or a low fee and invite other people in your field to take part. The event can be monetized by offering follow-up services or selling recordings.
Hosting online retreats has the advantage that experts who participate in them will share the promotion with their audience. This can help you gain a lot of exposure for your blog.
The Bestseller Online Summit is an example of the type of online event you can create to monetize your blog. Source: bestsellersummitonline.com