4 Ways to Monetize a Blog

The majority of bloggers start a blog with the intention to make money. However, most people who start a blog never make a dime. So what separates the free bloggers from those who make a living from it?

Well, according to a survey of over 1,100 bloggers by Growth Badger, 73% of bloggers who make more than $50,000 per year say they focus their content on the interests of a very specific group.

Simply put, these profitable bloggers niched-down.

So before you start trying to figure out how to make money blogging, you need to make sure your blog is focused on a specific niche. Once you’ve done that, it’s time to start making money.

In this article, we’ll go over the 4 best ways to monetize a blog. We’ll also go over what you should avoid when monetizing a blog. Plus, we’ll fill you in on how you can monetize a blog without losing readers.

If you want to break through to the other side and make a side income or even a full-time income from your blog, you’ll want to pay attention to these tips.

Let’s jump right in.

The 4 Best Ways to Monetize a Blog

There are probably a dozen ways you can make money blogging. However, they aren’t all effective strategies when it comes to monetizing your blog. Here are the best strategies available:


Affiliate Marketing

This is by far the most popular form of blog monetization. Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to get started making money online without having to sell your own product.

You simply make recommendations for great products your readers should buy and set up affiliate links to businesses that sell products in your niche. Whenever someone clicks on your affiliate link and buys the product, you earn a commission from the business. You’re essentially acting as a salesman. The better you are at recommending products (and the more traffic your site gets), the more money you can make.

This strategy requires a ton of time and effort. Most people won’t see any income for at least 3-6 months and it could be 1-2 years before you could be making a full-time income from this strategy.

However, the best part is you don’t need to touch a product. You don’t need to fulfill orders. You don’t need to ship anything. And, you don’t have to do customer service for the products. It’s one of the most hands-free blog monetization strategies available and for good reason.


Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising

Another option for monetizing your blog is to put up ads for other people’s products directly on your site. This strategy is best suited for bloggers who are generating a ton of traffic.

This strategy isn’t the best if you’re still working on building up traffic. If you’re getting over 10,000 visitors every day, you’ll probably make an alright side income. The real money in advertising is when you’re getting over 100,000 visitors per day.

You could make more money if you’re in between 10k-100k if you negotiate better terms with your advertiser and possibly use display ads instead.


Email Marketing

One of the greatest ways you can monetize your blog is through email marketing. It is one of the best long-term strategies as you’re able to build a core following, by building a great relationship with your visitors.

However, in order to be successful with email marketing, you need to first work on building up an email list. You should create lead magnets like a free PDF or a how-to course through email. Plus you should begin using a platform like ConvertKit or Aweber to grow your email list.

This method takes a lot of time and energy, but you will be able to make about $1 per subscriber on average by putting in the effort.


Sell Online Courses

Selling your own digital course is a great way to bring in an income from your blog. Developing your own course is one of the best ways you can add value to your readers. Plus, by creating your own course, you’re selling your own product, which is the most profitable monetization strategy for bloggers.

The one downside is that this strategy won’t be very effective for every niche. However, if your niche is complex, and your audience has a common set of problems that can be solved through education, then it could work. It also takes a huge commitment to take the time to create the course.

But, once your course is up and running, it’s completely digital so you don’t have to fulfill any product order when someone buys. When someone clicks buy, they get their course immediately and you get paid. It can be a great semi-passive income stream.

How to Monetize a Blog Without Losing Readers

One of the biggest concerns bloggers have when thinking about monetizing their blog is, “But what if I lose readers?”

The fact is, most people are scared of “selling”. No one wants to be a salesperson, and when you want to monetize your blog, you’re effectively stepping into the role of a salesperson.

The #1 thing you should keep in mind when monetizing your blog is this:

Does this product (whether your own or someone else’s) provide value to my audience?

If it does, then you need to keep that in mind whenever you’re intimidated to promote anything. If you don’t believe in the product, then don’t recommend or sell it.

If your products or the products you’re recommending add value to the lives of your readers, then you won’t lose readers. Sure, some people just want freebies, but they don’t have to buy anything. And the people who do buy from you will be so glad that you recommended a product that makes their life better.

By offering more value in the form of relevant products, it will keep your readers coming back.

What to Avoid When Monetizing a Blog

There are a few things you need to remember when monetizing your blog. You will want to avoid a couple things if you want to have a successful money-making blog.


Showing Too Many Display Ads

If you put up display ads, you want to make sure you don’t spam your visitor’s eyes with too many. Make sure your ads are placed subtly throughout your site so as to not scare off your readers. Be selective with the ads you show and only put a few on each page.


Forgetting Engagement

Many new bloggers focus too much on driving traffic that they forget the most important aspect of making money with their blog: engaged readers. Make sure you’re continuing to produce high-quality, problem-solving content as you monetize your blog.


Not Having a Strategy

When you decide to monetize your blog, you’re essentially deciding to become a business. That means you need to start acting like one if you want to make money blogging. Remember to choose a monetization strategy, set goals, and track your progress.


Giving Up Early

This is the biggest mistake to avoid when monetizing a blog. The fact is, most people give up. They don’t see a result quick enough, so they throw in the towel. What truly separates the bloggers making $50,000+ per year and the wannabe bloggers is the ones who are willing to put in the work.

Monetizing your blog won’t happen overnight. You need to be willing to go at least 3-6 months of seeing absolutely zero income. However, if you dedicate yourself to monetizing your blog, and you follow the recommendations above, you’ll see an income before you know it. Trust me when I say that you’ll never forget the first dollar you make. It’s worth it.

If you are thinking about monetizing your blog, but you need more blog traffic, try out our predictive analytics plugin and automatically receive forecasts of what content will give you the most blog growth in the future.

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Check out some of our other blog posts:

4 Ways to Monetize a Blog
How to Find a Niche for Your Blog
Introducing SquarSwap: A predictive analytics tool to optimize blog growth