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Congratulations! So, you have finally decided to start your blog (blogging is so 2000ish?) but you are now looking for ways to monetize your blog. An income on the side isn’t bad, eh?
Or, maybe I need to hold my congratulations for a little bit longer? Your mind is still lurking in the grey zone Should I, shouldn’t I start a blog? If your inner voice’s follow-your-passion pitch isn’t strong enough, let me show you the aspects of blogging that will make that wallet of yours heavier.
Let’s get back to our primary question. How do you make money with a blog? I am pretty sure you know a few basic ones (like Adsense) No? Needn’t worry in this post I have covered them all. Way beyond the basics, there are many, many ways to skin a cat. And you probably are not aware of them unless you are a long time blogger or have done your home work well.
Without further ado, let’s get started:
The holy ghost of internet marketing. Drumroll please. Okay, maybe not, as you might already be aware of the Google’s program for monetization for web publishers. Ever since its inception Adsense has remained one of the top notch ads program to make money with. The income might be just a trickle if you don’t have a great traffic coming in. So, adsense is better off for those heavy traffic websites.
Adsense is also very notorious for account approvals. It is so because over the years due to frauds and lazy blogging (simple copy paste stuff) Adsense has become strict and choosy when it comes to account approval. And if you so much as even, think about gaming adsense, your account would be a toss, bye-bye adsense forever. There are some adsense alternatives though like Chitika but none come closer to what Adsense is.
2. Affliate marketing
Affliate marketing comes a close second to adsense but these days many websites make use of affliate marketing as their primary source of income. One reason for it is the difficult approval process of adsense. Secondly, many publishers don’t want to hamper user experiense by pasting ads all over their website. Thirdly and importantly, due to advent of adblockers which effectively hides adsense ads, publishers are forced to look for alternate approaches.
Affliate marketing is a very straightforward way of making money, you can imagine it as a bit of paid recommendation. You promote a product or a service on your blog (or email lists/ other places) and when the user purchases it boom you earn a flat commission.
There is no dearth of products that you can promote, imagine having the whole Amazon at your disposal! Also, programs like clickbank and jvzoo allows you to sell digital products. The commisions on these platforms are usually very high more than 60-70% of the total sales.
3. Advertisement spots
Once you have your blog up and running you can zone-in on the area of the webpage where you would allow advertisers to display their ads. You can choose from top banner, sidebar, top, middle and bottom of the post.
The biggest advantages of selling direct advertisement spots over adsense is that:
1. You’d make much more money than with adsense.
2. There is no fear of getting your account blocked and your money being held back. Typically, you’d receive the payment upfront than having to wait till the end of the cycle.
3. Adblockers cannot block such advertisements, not yet anyway.
But, remember to not overdo it as advertisements can seriously degrade the user experience. Last thing you want is to irritate and lose your regular readers.
There are several wordpress plugins available that let you define your ad inventory, sell the spots and keep the statistics such as impressions and clicks.
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4. Sponsored Posts
Sponsored posts are a tricky subject and can negatively impact your blog’s authenticity if not done right. Celebrities can get away with promoting shitty products but you can’t! The best approach is to ask for an evulation copy of the product and write an honest review based on that. Also, clearly mention or add a disclaimer in your post that you are doing a sponsored post.
I can’t stress enough for you to be genuine and authentic. Don’t write a sales copy of the product, write about your interaction, your experience with the product. This experience can have both postitive as well as negative aspects.
5. Selling SEO service
If you are getting a chunk of your traffic from search engine, you should be able to position yourself to potential clients as an SEO expert. From the Google analytics report you should be able to gain insight on what is working on your blog and what is not. Sell this newly acquired knowledge to people looking for similar results… BAM!
6. Monetize Youtube channel
If you run a youtube channel, I’d urge you to build a blog. A blog would serve as a complementary place where you can engage with your audience even further, eventually leading upto capturing them for your business.
Or better still, you can send the blog traffic to your youtube channel and mint money with adsense. Adsense approval is comparatively easy with a youtube channel.
7. Email Lists
Email lists are perhaps the best way to make money? Why? Simply because it is a truly passive income. You do all the setup (autoreponders etc.) once and money keeps on rolling on its own.
Again, you can promote affliate products to people on your email lists or sell ad spots to other web publisher looking to promote their website/ products.
8. Social Media Marketing
With your (quality/viral) blog posts, you can build quite an audience on social media network(s). A large social media following, combined with high engagement is a great selling point for brands in your niche which are trying to reach a pool of audience. In simple terms you sell a tweet, facebook post and make money! Easy money! And this is only one way to monetize your social media network, if you really want to go into depth read my individual blog posts on making money from twitter, facebook and instagram.
9. Freelance work
Consider your blog as a testimony of your work to a potential employer. I personally know people who have landed lucrative freelance writing assignments with big names in publishing industry all through their blog.
To conclude, there are so many ways to monetize your blog that once your blog start getting attention you’d find the ideas coming to you on their own. At the moment all you need to do is to actually get your work out and build a serious readership of your blog.
To your success -Vidyut Rautela.