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Solo bloggers often start their projects out of a passion for the topic. They love what they write about and want to share their knowledge with the world. As their readership grows, they start to wonder if they should try to make a little money from their words. Many successful bloggers started by adding a few monetization strategies to their sites.
According to Internet Live Stats, there are around 7 billion blog posts written each day. While the number varies, hundreds of thousands of bloggers contribute data in real-time. If you’ve already found your target audience and created a unique niche, good for you. It probably is time to monetize.
If you haven’t yet found your footing, take the time to do so before implementing these money-making strategies.
Let’s dig into what you need to do and not do when changing things up from non-profitable blog posting to actually monetizing a blog:
Monetizing a Blog – Do: Choose the Right Timing
When is the best time for monetizing a blog? While you should think about the ways you’d like to from day one, you also need some steady traffic and a mailing list before you’ll make money. Some affiliate programs require a set amount of traffic before they’ll accept you.
Only you can decide when it’s the right time to monetize, but pay attention to your traffic and how involved your users are. Work on creating content that drives people to your site. Develop relationships with your loyal fans.
Do: Ramp Up Security
Additional monetization means you’re likely collecting data from customers and even credit card info. Take the time to make sure you meet any government regulations, including the more than 80 cybersecurity recommendations from the U.S. Cyberspace Solarium Commission released in 2020.
Don’t: Rely on a Single Stream
When setting up income for your blog, you should never rely on a single stream of revenue. If you put all your efforts into one thing and it fails, your income all disappears at one time. Setting up different streams helps you get over the bumps of blogging and keep income steadily flowing in.
You can make blog money in a slew of ways. Here are just a few to consider:
- Offer courses
- Sell books
- Allow paid guest posts
- Place ads from Google or other search engines
- Write articles for companies for pay
- Sell membership only content
- Join affiliate programs
- Become a paid influencer
Choose at least a few different options. You may find you make more money off one or two methods than others. The goal is to receive revenue from various sources.
Do: Find a Niche
Choose a focus for your blog. You want to fully understand the target audience and the type of reader you attract. Study what other blogs similar to yours cover and find ways to be unique.
For example, if you write a parenting blog, there are thousands of them online. What unique take do you have? Are the mom of triplets? Maybe your focus is on frugal homeschooling or fun with items you find around the home. Think about what others write and try to find a different angle.
Establish yourself as the go-to expert on the topic. If someone needs an article about raising triplets, you should be the first name they think of. Post guest articles on other sites, share insight on social media and come up with unique angles showing off your expertise.
Do: Consider Your Mobile Users
Some online ads and third-party affiliate links look odd on mobile devices. According to StatCounter, 54.61% of internet traffic comes through mobile devices. With more and more people accessing the internet solely from their smartphones, you must ensure everything on your site adapts to a smaller screen.
Test every element you add to your pages. Most bigger affiliate providers and search engines help ensure your site is responsive to smartphones. You can also test how your site looks on different types of cell phones and tablet screens.
Don’t: Get Discouraged
It’s rare to make significant revenue overnight. For most bloggers, monetizing a blog is a long-term strategy, growing month over month until they hit the goals they’ve set. Don’t worry if the first few months see very little revenue.
Keep trying different tactics and experimenting until you find the perfect mix of marketing and traffic to help make your blog a profitable one.
Do: Create a Network
Selling ad space directly is the most profitable way to create advertising revenue for your blog. Spend time networking with local business owners and develop relationships with others in your industry. For example, if you write about local things to do, seek out sponsorships from restaurants and entertainment venues.
Start a mailing list of your contacts. Offer specials, such as buy one month of advertising and get one free. Highlight other business owners and make your blog valuable to those in your network.
Do: Track Results
According to a report by QYResearch, the A/B testing market will be $1.2 billion by 2026. If you want to find success with your monetization strategies, you must understand how well different efforts work.
Pay careful attention to the things bringing in the most money and repeat those efforts to grow your income exponentially. If you sell an online course and it only brings in $30, you either need to pick a different topic or you need to shift your focus to a different revenue stream.
Track the results for competitors. Where is their money generated? What keywords drive the most traffic to their site? How can you repeat their successful endeavors in a unique way?
9. Don’t: Forget Your Lead Funnel
Long term success requires leads, happy customers and word-of-mouth marketing. Set up a lead funnel so you can collect information from your top readers. Reach out to them regularly and ask them to share what you do with others.
You may want to develop a street team made up of your most loyal fans. Ask them to share your social media posts, tell others about articles they like and share your course information with those they think might be interested.
You could even set up a referral program to reward them when they send qualified leads your way. Your lead funnel should be fast and seamless. Make sure people aren’t bouncing away before submitting their info.
Do: Take Courses
Invest in yourself as an entrepreneur. Take courses from successful bloggers and learn how to drive more traffic to your website, write a better article or discover new skills to bring in money.
Could you add something such as coaching to your repertoire? What skills do you need to offer new things? Where can you learn them? Seek the best courses you can afford. Udemy is a great resource for learning new things. You can also read reviews from others who’ve taken the course and see if it mat
You might think you have to wait until you have hundreds of thousands of visitors a month, but you can monetize your blog with just a thousand or so readers. You may be limited in which affiliate programs accept you until your traffic is higher, but there are a few.
Go ahead and develop courses, webinars and an ad program. Charge advertisers based on your traffic, raising the rates as they gain more exposure. Embrace every chance to bring in money and set goals for replacing your income so you can become a professional blogger.
Thousands have gone before you and found a way to make it work. You just have to be determined and savvy when it comes to monetizing a blog.