How to Monetize a Blog
So you’ve built your blog. Maybe it started out as a hobby, maybe you always wanted to make money online. Either way, if you’re getting the traffic then there is money to be made. How to monetize a blog? There’s no exact formula. People use tons of ways to make money online and finding your own methods is part of the fun, but we understand you need a helping hand starting out in the monetization of your webspace.
First and foremost, make sure you have SOME traffic. Hey, it doesn’t have to be tons. Some people are happy just making enough from their blog to cover the cost of hosting it. You might want to monetize your blog just because you know you have the traffic, or you might be at the start of your website empire. Whatever scenario you find yourself in, traffic is the key.
So how much traffic do I need?
Again, there’s no short and simple answer to this and it varies from site to site. If your site is targeted (a fashion blog where you recommend shoes for example), then you know there are buyers there, and people that will click on ads or affiliate links. If your site is just a humour blog with funny pictures, your viewers are just there for a cheap laugh, not to part with cash or be sold to. That’s just the way it is.
I first started generating income from a pretty non targeted website (my UK football blog) when the traffic reached about 4,000 unique viewers a month. The income wasn’t big, but it covered costs and allowed me to trickle a little more money back into my online projects.
What ways are there to monetize?
Advertising Networks – this is the main one. Google’s Adsense is the best example. Get an account, implement their code and ads that are relevant to your site appear. There’s a whole science to this, but you dont need to know the ins and outs to put a few ads up and start making money.
In Text Ads – I use infolinks for my in-text ads and I even have an awesome Infolinks review on the site. The way their ads work is that they highlight some of your words and phrases, and if somebody clicks on them, you get paid. Simple and effective.
Private Ads – You could use a service like BuySellAds to broker your advertising space and sell this way, but you need to be getting big traffic to do so, and be blogging in a niche where people care enough to advertise (I can’t see many advertisers for funnyfishermanphotos.com).
Affiliate Schemes – You can use affiliate schemes on your site. Amazon is one of the most famous examples of this. Basically, if somebody clicks a link from your site to an affiliate product, you make a small percentage of the sale. Neat.
What should I avoid?
Google clearly set out guidelines for this. You should try and avoid anything spammy and ‘Black Hat’. Selling links for example is supposedly frowned upon and penalised by google. Avoid putting too many ads on your site because 1) Google will ban you (they limit the amount of ads you can have per page) and 2) your readers will click away.
Hopefully these tips have helped you on your road to monetization. Let me know if there’s anything you can think of that I didn’t include.