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When I first started blogging in 2012 I thought the only way to get paid was to have ads on your blog. Boy was I wrong! There are so many ways that you can make money blogging.
Now, there is one thing I want you to remember. To make money blogging it does take time. You should not expect to make a full-time income overnight, however, in my experience, it is possible to be profitable within your first few months of launching your blog. If you are ready to start a blog check out my step-by-step tutorial here.
In this post, I am going to introduce you to five ways you can monetize your blog.
The first monetization route that many bloggers jump to is ads. They set up their blogs, sign up for Adsense and they expect to have the money start rolling in.
Unless you have thousands and thousands of pageviews each month it is more than likely that your ads will only pay for your coffee, not your Caribbean cruise.
I have chosen not to have ads on my site. However, I know many successful bloggers, like Lena from What Mommy Does, who tastefully implement ads into her monetization strategy and make thousands each month, so don’t rule it out.
There are two primary ways that you are paid for ads.
Pay Per Click
Meaning you get paid each time someone clicks on the advertisement.
Pay Per Impression
These ads are paid based upon the number of times the advertisement is seen.
Pinterest can help you increase your ad income by increasing traffic to pages where you have ads posted.
Ads can be one piece to your monetization puzzle, but be sure to implement them strategically.
2. Sponsored Posts
On this blog, I mostly talk about my Pinterest marketing experience, but I actually have been an influencer marketing coordinator for small businesses for the last year and a half. So there is a chance that I have been the person on the other side of your sponsored post pitch.
Sponsored posts can be a great way to bring in some money from your blog and get your blog in front of a new audience. Often times, if the brand you work with is a small business you will get lots of social media love after your collaboration.
Before you begin pitching for sponsored posts be sure to create a media kit. This is like your blogs resume. You want to include a friendly picture, a bio and relevant statistics to your blog. I recommend at least including your social media statistics and page views for your blog. Bonus points if you include demographic information about your audience.
To find sponsored opportunities you have a few options you can work with a sponsorship network or you can personally reach out to different brands.
If you are interested in joining a network, here are a few popular options.
Another great way to find brands to work with is through an app called Collabor8. This is an app that helps influencers and brands connect. I have coordinated some of my favorite sponsored posts thanks to the Collabor8 app.
For more information on sponsored posts read this post here.
3. Affiliate Marketing
I LOVE affiliate marketing. Essentially, affiliate marketing is sharing products you love with your readers and when they make a purchase you earn a commission. What is great is that this is at no extra expense to them and oftentimes they get special perks if they use your link.
For example, when someone uses my Tailwind link instead of getting just their first 100 pins free they get their first month free!
Affiliate marketing is the first way I started making money from my blog. There were so many tools and resources that helped me grow my blog and businesses so it was easy to share with my readers.
In my first month of blogging, I purchased the course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing from Michelle of Making Sense of Cents. I have been a fan of hers for YEARS and she makes over $50,000 a month in affiliate sales, so I was excited to implement her strategies.
Within two days of starting the course, I made my first affiliate sale and by my third month of this blog I made over $1200 in affiliate income!
For most bloggers, I would recommend starting with affiliates to monetize your blog. It is easy to do and can be very lucrative.
The three affiliate marketing networks I recommend to start with are
For more information on making money with affiliate marketing click here.
Bonus Tip: Don’t forget you can use affiliate links on Pinterest!
Your blog can be an amazing platform to promote your services. Having your own blog will give potential clients a taste of who you are. Write posts relevant to your service and include your services in your posts.
Having your own site will build rapport with clients. For example, Miranda Nahmias makes thousands of dollars a month from her virtual assisting services. She has been able to attract new clients through her blog and now has a thriving business.
5. Selling Your Own Product
This may be my favorite monetization method of all. On your blog, you can sell digital or physical products. Creating and selling your own products is incredibly rewarding.
Similarly to the services section, you can use your blog as a platform to gain customers for your products. If you have an Etsy shop for blog templates, for example, consider writing blog posts about web design and branding then funnel your readers over to your shop.
My blog is more of an educational platform to teach women how to build successful blogs and online businesses, so I created a course called Pinterest to Profits. In this course, I teach bloggers and business owners how to leverage Pinterest to increase their traffic, email list, and income.
Creating your own product can be a bit of a “what came first the chicken or the egg” scenario.
You can approach it two ways.
1. If you already have a blog but have not created a product yet here are a few tips to help you establish what to sell.
First, analyze your audience. Which of your posts have the most traffic? This can be indicative of what your readers are most interested in. Which posts have the most comments, repins and shares?
2. You have a product, but have not launched your blog.
Analyze who the target market for your product is and consider what they are interested in. If you sell baby items, for example, you may want to blog about prenatal yoga, the best baby shower gifts and sleep strategies for new parents.
Here are a few more ideas to get you started. You can sell,
- Digital products on Etsy or Creative Market
- Physical products on Amazon via their service Fulfilled By Amazon
- Courses hosted on Teachable
- A membership site
- Handmade items on Etsy
- An ebook delivered via Amazon or DPD
- Direct Sales products that you love
You really can make money blogging!
If you invest the time and treat your blog like a business you will be able to make money from your blog.
One question I am often asked is, “When should I monetize my blog?” Honestly, I started adding affiliate links to my blog in my first month. By my second month, I made about $400 in affiliate income and my third month I made over $1200 in affiliate income. In my third month I also launched the pre-sale for my first course Pinterest to Profits. During the first few days of that pre-sale I made over $300!
Starting a blog is one of the best things I have ever done. If you want to learn how you can start a blog too, check out my step-by-step tutorial on how to start a blog.
When you start monetizing your blog just remember to keep your reader in mind. Only share what would benefit them and avoid plastering ads all over your site. In all of the ways mentioned to make money blogging your reader is your customer.