Welcome to the second part of ‘How to start a blog and make money’. In the first part, we discussed how you can get started with a blog and the advantages of becoming an affiliate. In this article, we discuss the monetization tactics used by bloggers in detail and why affiliate marketing is a much better monetization strategy than CPM/CPC or selling private ads. But before we talk about the same, let us understand why blogging has become a worthy source of income and what are the advantages of the same.
By now, I’m sure that you would have a fair idea of the kind of topics you want to blog about. It could be a topic you are passionate about or something you know in depth. However, this passion and knowledge can prove to be very fruitful if you, as a blogger, know how to make money blogging in different ways. There are so many bloggers today that generate revenue from writing blogs. Some of the benefits of doing so can be given as follows:
1. Improved quality of content- Monetization through the blog makes one write better content. Allow us to explain – Writing a blog to make money, compels bloggers to push their standard of writing. This brings in more relevant viewers and increases the traffic on the blog. An increase in traffic, in turn, drives one to further improve the quality of the content and brings in more money as well. Many bloggers also use this revenue earned to promote their blogs on various other channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. and gain more traction on the same.
2. Many streams of income- When it comes to monetizing through your blog, you can open the door for more than one revenue stream. A blogger can monetize your blog through native advertising, subscriptions, micropayments etc. This diversification helps you to relieve the pressure on a particular source of income and brings in more viewers as well as bucks through the blog.
Now that you know what you want to write about, let’s understand how to make money writing a blogging by leveraging your passion and knowledge.
What are the different ways of making money from a blog?
There are some tried and tested ways that have given success to bloggers when it comes to adding revenue streams. Here are some of the key sources for doing the same:
a. Monetizing through CPC or CPM ads
One of the most common ways bloggers earn money is by putting banner ads on their website. We agree that ads could be a distraction, but not if you place ads that are relevant to your blog. For instance, if you have a blog that talks about fitness, then running ads about health products or supplements will make sense since the audience is likely to buy that product. Hence you can run ads based on a CPC model (cost per click) where you will get paid based on the total number of clicks or on a CPM model (cost per mille i.e per thousand impressions) where you can get paid based on the number of people that view your ad.
In order to make this possible, you can approach an ad network like Google AdSense. One of the key benefits of doing so is that you won’t have to be in direct contact with advertisers. All you need to do is create an account with Google’s AdSense to get started with advertising on your blog. This account takes six months to get approved. Once it gets approved, Google will provide you with an ad placement code for you to insert. After inserting the code, Google will do rest of the work of selecting and choosing relevant ads to your content. However, do bear in mind that you will be able to earn a good amount only once you have a healthy and steady web traffic. This process takes consistent effort and time so you need to be at it for quite a while.
b. Selling private ads
The main difference between this and monetizing through CPC or CPM ads is that won’t be a middleman or an ad network in between to decide which ads run on your blog. This means you can set the ad rates yourself based on the credibility and web traffic that you have built through your blog. While making money from a blog, you can charge a one-time fee for posting an ad for a certain period of time. Or even charge on a monthly basis. In a bid to maximize your income, you can also sell sponsorship space in your email newsletters.
c. Becoming an affiliate
Affiliate marketing is a tactic used by many marketers to promote their products and services. This is how it works: A company makes a product or offers a service and wants to advertise it to the right target audience. Hence, they approach bloggers who can reach their audience, asking them to promote their product. In return, the blogger gets a commission from each sale if the buyer is coming from their site/blog. To make this foolproof, the company provides bloggers with an affiliate link to track purchases against the code given to the blogger. This way, the company knows when a buyer has used your link to make a purchase. When the reader clicks the link/banner ad and buys the product, the blogger earns their commission. A blogger can become an affiliate by joining an affiliate network such as Amazon Associates, vCommission, Commission Junction etc. They can also become an affiliate by approaching a brand or a company directly to earn money from blog.
d. Selling digital products and resources
You must already be aware of digital resources such as online courses, workshops, videos etc. that people can use in their own content. These products can be used to make money through your blog. There are so many users online that need eBooks, plugins and integrations to enrich their website. As a blogger, you can use your flair in writing to describe the features and benefits of such products. In addition to this, you can also sell renowned e-Commerce integrations such as Shopify and WooCommerce to attract a large number of readers.
e. Guest blogging
Guest blogging has allowed bloggers to not only add another revenue stream but also put themselves in front of a different audience. As a guest blogger, one can develop their relationship with a different set of bloggers in the field. This is beneficial from a networking point of view and finding newer opportunities.
In addition to this, guest blogging is also a splendid way to establish yourself as a thought leader in your market. This helps bloggers attract brands and companies organically. Before choosing to become a guest blogger you should know whether sharing the space with another blogger is really going to help you. Try to understand what kind of a domain or page authority this blog holds and charge the partner accordingly. But most importantly, make sure that you write great content as a guest blogger since it is an effective tactic to attract a new audience on your blog.
f. Becoming an online coach
Mentoring is a great way to monetize through the blog. If you know that you are knowledgeable about a field, topic or a discipline, you should go the whole hog and monetize. There are so many users that are looking for online courses to learn a new skill or update themselves with new practices etc. In such cases, you can create a blog and give such users tips as to ‘how to go about doing’ something and make a video to supplement the content. You can also have Skype sessions and charge on a per hour basis or make ‘ask me directly’ chatbots to interact with your audience. However, becoming an online coach is not so easy. It not only takes dedicated hard work but also takes physical evidence to showcase that you are capable of delivering what you say. For. eg. there are so many dieticians and fitness instructors who claim to have years of experience but they don’t have physical evidence in terms of client testimonials or videos to show that they are capable of turning things around. So, if you are looking to become an online coach, pick a field that you know through and through and blog about it.
After knowing these different means of earning money online, it is natural for one to feel ‘Okay, but which of these is the simplest form of making money through a blog?’ To this, our reply would be- becoming an affiliate. In the earlier part, we have seen how becoming an affiliate has a great advantage of making money online. We also saw that it involves zero investment in terms of money. In addition to this, there are many more benefits of becoming an affiliate by joining an affiliate program, especially if you are new to blogging. Let’s see what they are, shall we?
Why is affiliate program a much better option than others for someone who has started blogging?
First of all, being an affiliate does not require a blogger to be an expert about the product or the service. In fact, it is a great way to quickly maximize your earning potential from visitors to the blog with little or no effort (except your writing). Moreover, affiliates do not need to worry about processing orders or logistical details pertaining to the product after the sale is made. Neither do they need to worry about making ad banners to promote the products. On the contrary, bloggers will be given all the collateral material that is there to promote the product/brand. They will also have the liberty to promote as many products/services as they want and earn healthy commissions on the same.
Secondly, affiliates can choose who they want to work for. They are not tied down to a particular brand /product or even a company. Hence, affiliates do not really have specific days or hours when it comes to work. They can choose their working hours according to their convenience. With an affiliate program, a blogger-turned-affiliate need not worry about the traffic coming to the website. In fact, joining an affiliate program will increase the probability of genuine leads to the blog since there will be a correlation between your blog and the product/service that you are advocating. A great affiliate program will look something like this:
- Allows you to sign-up for free
- Does not expect any commitment from you
- Does not charge you at any point in time
- Provides a good commission on every sale that you make
- Assists you with an affiliate manager to lubricate sales conversions
If you compare an affiliate program to the other sources of making money from a blog, you will realize that becoming an affiliate has very little or no effort. By joining an affiliate program, you are not only adding an easy source of income but are also steering your reputation in your field/ industry as a trusted entity. At ResellerClub, we also offer an affiliate program and over the years have witnessed many such websites and blogs related to our industry earn handsome commissions by selling our products on their sites.
Many successful affiliates around the world started with a blog, just like you. But today, they are much coveted because of their blogging prowess and their ability to entice the right audience.
We hope that you have understood how to make money blogging and why an affiliate program is a much more beneficial when it comes to earning money online. In case you haven’t started blogging yet, you can get yourself a WordPress hosting and start right away and go through our article and understand ‘how to start a blog’. Even though garnering a good number of followers on your blog may seem difficult in the initial stages, publishing relevant content with consistency, will help you attract a strong audience. You can also make your blog look better by availing some great themes. As your audience grows, so will your authenticity and reputation in your field as a blogger and then, earning money by becoming an affiliate will get much easier.