You may have heard before that blogging can actually be a very lucrative method to
make money online. But most people are a little fuzzy on the “how?”. Indeed, while it
started out as just a hobby, blogging has flourished into an extremely well-paying
industry, if you know how to leverage it.
There are numerous ways to monetize your online space and make your work
worthwhile. It will be slow to start, but in time, you should be able to make a living
entirely from your blog. Here’s how!
The easiest way to make money from your blog is to set up affiliate links. Here’s how
they work: let’s say you’re talking about a product you are using, be it a pair of shoes or
a gadget. As always, you provide links, so that your readers can easily source whatever
it is that you are talking about. When these links are affiliate links, every time a person
clicks through to purchase that item, you get a little kickback from the sale.
The important thing to point out here is that the user is not charged extra for using the
affiliate link. Their transaction works exactly in the same way, so it makes no difference
to a customer whether they go on Amazon separately to look for the item or click
through your affiliate link.
The other thing to know is that you won’t get a huge amount of money; in fact, it’s only a
small percentage per click-through purchase. However, that kickback adds up when
you’ve got a significant number of click-throughs and it can result in a few thousand
dollars’ worth of income per month.
What’s the best thing about it? It doesn’t require any effort on your part; all you have
to do is set them up and then it’s passive income.
Of course, running a blog is an excellent opportunity for advertising. Much like affiliate
links, you don’t have to actually do much to get ads running and making you money.
There are two types of ads that are most commonly used: CPM, which pay a certain
(fixed) amount depending on the number of people who view the ad, and CPC/PPC,
which are based on clicks, rather than views, so that’s what you get paid for.
Google AdSense is the easiest way to do it, hands-down, especially if you’re just
starting out. You don’t need to reach out to advertisers or try to figure out a good fit. All
you need to do is put the banner ad on your page in the right spot and Google does the
work of picking the ads that are most likely to attract views and clicks, based on your
content and your audience.
If you’re really good at what you do and end up gaining popularity, you will find that
advertisers will approach you directly and ask to negotiate a placement. Or, you can
take the initiative and propose it to them, instead. This is a great option for someone
with a lot of experience and the following to back it up, as it allows you to control the
rates and payment. Ads like this can be an ongoing deal or just a one-time thing,
depending on your interests and how good a fit the advertiser is for your blog.
What’s the best thing about it? Like affiliate links, it’s passive income, except this
earns you way more money.
If you’re really lucky and have a decent following, brands will sometimes reach out ask
to work with you directly. That means they will typically have a proposition for a post or
series of posts showcasing their brand or products, and you will get compensated for
the work you do for them.
This can be a double-edged sword, because while the compensation is almost always
significant and tempting, the post required can sometimes do more harm than good
when it comes to establishing audience trust. Sponsored posts are a very touchy
subject in the blogging world, and making sure the audience will accept the post can be
a tricky balance to strike.
A good piece of advice is to always make sure that the product or sponsored post in
question fits organically within your space and personal brand. For example, if you’re
running a car blog, don’t make a sponsored post about toothpaste, because that’s
jarring and comes across as an obvious, dishonest money-grab. Featuring a brand of
motor oil makes more sense, and is more likely to fall within the scope of your
audience’s expectations and interests.
What’s the best thing about it? Brand deals and sponsored posts are typically the
best paying gigs in the blogging world.
One of the best perks of the job when it comes to blogging (or at least certain niches
within the blogging community) is that you get a lot of free stuff. Officially, it’s labelled
“press samples”, “items sent for consideration”, “items sent for review”, or any variation
on that idea. Basically, brands will send you products, gifts, vouchers, and sometimes
invite you on cool trips for the purpose of showcasing their products, services, launching
a new product, etc. And since you’re a representative of the press, you get to enjoy
This is a good opportunity to establish good working relationships with brands and other
bloggers and influencers. On press trips, especially, you get to learn more about a
brand and their ethos, the way they work, etc. Vouchers and gifts are always welcome
and contribute to your earnings. Selling press samples is discouraged in some circles,
but most bloggers will find a way to offload the excess in a profitable way, including by
giving it away to their audience, in order to attract more followers and boost their
What’s the best thing about it? You’re not obligated to post anything in return, provide
a positive review, or create any content featuring the brand. This is a press perk and
typical industry “swag”.
Blogging is far from being tapped out, as a resource for a steady, healthy income. While
at first, it may just be a source for some extra pocket change, in time, you can
absolutely turn it into an incredibly lucrative business. There are all kinds of ways you
can make money from your blog – between affiliate links, ads, sponsorships and the
gratuity that you get from brands and other paid experiences, blogging can very well
become a full-time job, or your primary source of income.