Some of you have told me that you’d like to learn more about how I make money blogging. I’m no expert, and I’m not making a ton of money, but I’ll be happy to tell you what I’m doing and how you can do it too.
First, please understand that most people (except for huge blogs such as The Simple Dollar, Get Rich Slowly, ProBlogger, etc.) don’t make enough money blogging to quit their day jobs. And when you do start earning money, it’s in trickles. It will take many months, even a year or more to start earning anything.
That said, if your blog appeals to a wide audience, you can (and should) consider earning at least a small amount for your time.
Build up your reader base first.
Do this by blogging regularly (3-7 times per week) with content that will appeal to your niche audience, visiting other blogs and commenting, joining blog networks, submitting your links to carnivals”Mr. Linky” (Works for Me Wednesday, Menu Plan Monday, Frugal Friday, etc.), Also, try carnivals such as The Festival of Frugality or search this huge catalog of running carnivals.
Sharing a little “link love” is a great way to get the attention of bloggers, and they just might return the favor.
Never simply mention a web site, though. For example, if you want to mention my site, don’t just type “Kacie at Sense to Save says…” Instead, you should hyperlink back to the blog you mention. That way, the blog owner is more likely to see that you mentioned her site. She might pop over to say “thanks!” and stick around and read more of your blog.
Try adding a few ads to your site.
You’ll need to reach $100 in your Adsense account before they’ll send you your first check. I’m still waiting for mine, but hopefully it’ll show up sometime this year.
To optimize Adsense and avoid low-paying ads, visit AdsBlackList.com. You’ll be able to generate a list of ads to restrict from appearing on your site. Money Life Network blogger Hank has an excellent post to walk you through this step.
I’m a member of the BlogHer ad network. This network pays per page view, not per click as Adsense does. As a result, I see a higher payout. BlogHer isn’t taking applications for new members right now, but you can be e-mailed when they open it up.
You can sell text link or graphic ads to individuals. Sometimes, your site will catch the attention of marketers, and they might e-mail you about placing an ad on your site. You’ll have to consider the company and how much money they’re offering to determine if it would be worth it to you. I’d caution against selling permanent placement ads. If someone offers you $30 to run an ad for as long as you have a web site, you’ll never see another dime from them, even if your blog grows exponentially. It’s a great deal for them, not so great for you. Negotiate for ad placement on a one-month, three-month, or six-month basis to keep your options open.
Either you can wait to be approached by these companies, or you can approach companies or individuals yourself.
Use affiliate links
Using affiliate links are another fantastic way to make money blogging. You’re an affiliate when you bring customers to a company via links. They’ll pay you a fee as a “thank you.” For example, whenever I mention my Ebates account, I link to it using my affiliate link. This is a link coded just for me. When people sign up for it after using my link, I get a few dollars.
Think about the web sites you visit and patronize. If they have an affiliate program, why not sign up and see if you can make a little money from it?
A word of caution
As I mentioned above, it will take some time to start earning money. Be patient.
And please, don’t go overboard and clutter your blog with ads! You’ll want to keep it as clean and organized as possible. Too many ads will overwhelm your readers, and possibly even turn some people away.
Advice from you?
Have you blogged about making money by selling ads or using affiliate links? Post your link below and help us learn from you!
As a reader, what do you think of blogs with ads? Do you mind? Or are you annoyed?
For further reading, please check out:
If this topic really interests you, then you should check out ProBlogger. Here’s a post outlining a few methods for making money (and be sure to look at the links below that post).