Regardless if you’re planning on starting your own blog or not, you might be wondering: “How much do bloggers actually get paid?“, or “How do bloggers actually make money?“.
The answer is, there are actually a lot of ways on how a blog owner can monetize his/her blog or website. So if you’re planning on creating your own blog, you can later choose how you’re going to monetize your blog.
With that said, let’s get on with it.
1. Ad Networks
Have you visited a blog or website whereas it’s pretty much filled with annoying ads everywhere? Yep, chances are, that website is using an ad network to monetize his/her website.
Take note though, using ad networks is definitely not bad if a certain website’s ads are bearable. It’s just that some blogs and website just fill their website with as many ads as they can to make as much money possible, sacrificing and heavily damaging the user experience of their readers.
While using an ad network might be one of the easiest ways to monetize a certain blog or website, it might not be the best monetization option, but it completely depends on the blog’s niche.
So, how do ad networks work?
Without going extremely deep on the specifics and the technical stuff, you simply add a sort of code provided by the ad network on your blog or website, then ads will be automatically displayed on your blog or website.
The ad network will then pay you depending on how much views or “impressions” the ads are getting, and how much ad clicks you’re getting on your blog or website.
Since ad networks only pay you a certain amount of cents per ad impression and ad click, it really wouldn’t be worth it to use an ad network unless your blog or website is receiving probably above 25,000 visitors per month.
While some websites with ads from ad networks implemented in them sometimes get a bad rap for having too many annoying ads, take note that you can pick how many ads these ad networks can display on your blog or website as to not overwhelm your readers with ads, and you can also pick at what locations these ads appear to potentially make them less annoying and distracting.
How do I sign up to an ad network?
It’s mostly just as easy as registering or making an account on a social media website. The difference is just that you’re going to need to submit your website’s URL and wait a certain amount of time for them to decide if they want to advertise on your website or not.
Take note, some ad networks require your website to be receiving a certain number of traffic before they even consider accepting your blog or website.
2. Affiliate & Referral Marketing
Definitely one of the best ways of monetizing a blog or website when done correctly, simply due to the fact that you won’t be needing to add huge images for your readers to see and potentially click. Instead, this mostly just consists of links that are added in a blog post’s content.
Compared to advertisement links from ad networks that mostly consists of images, links from affiliate and referral programs look more “organic” as affiliate and referral links should only be added when necessary and if it actually fits the topic.
With blogs that do affiliate and referral marketing well, you wouldn’t even notice that they’re advertising and making money off a certain product or service. On some blogs and websites on the other hand(the bad ones), affiliate and referral links are more obvious as some of them pretty much shove these links to your face by linking the affiliate link multiple times in a blog post, almost like they’re begging you to click them.
How does affiliate marketing work?
Affiliate and referral marketing is pretty much like advertising a certain product over a loudspeaker, and every time someone buys that product because of your advertisement, you get a certain cut from those sales.
Specifically, in the online blogging world, people would add affiliate links(provided by the advertiser) to their blog posts, and every time someone clicks on that link and buys the advertised product or service, the blog owner gets a certain cut. Sales shares from affiliate and referral programs mostly range from 1-10%, completely depending on what kind of product and service is being advertised.
Where do I sign up for affiliate programs?
We’re a huge advocate for actually endorsing products that we actually like and use.
Some bloggers look at every service that has their own affiliate program and endorse the one that pays the best. Whereas we just grab a list of the products and services we use, and take a look if they have their own affiliate or referral program.
We simply do it by making a quick Google search. For example, we’d like to know if a certain service we use, Amazon, has an affiliate program or not. We do a quick Google such like so:
And after clicking enter, there we go. A link to Amazon’s affiliate program. Conveniently on the first Google spot too. It’s that simple.
3. Selling services
This should be self explanatory.
Let’s say for instance you own a blog about cars and how to take care of them. Once your blog gets to the point where it’s getting a good amount of monthly traffic, you can sell a certain service that fits your blog’s niche. Maybe something like a car repairing service, a car wash service, or something else that concerns cars.
You can pretty much endorse any service you want, as long as it’s related to your blog’s niche. You wouldn’t want to have a blog about cars, and you’re going to endorse a drywall installation service. The likeliness of you successfully selling your service will be low as your readers are on your website to read about cars in the first place, not to read about construction materials.
4. Selling physical products
This is pretty much like the previous point.
Let’s say for instance you have a blog about women’s fashion. For more potential profit to be made, instead of having affiliate links of Amazon or affiliate links from other websites, you can clothing or maybe things like makeup and fashion accessories to your readers directly.
- Car cleaning products and car accessories for blogs about cars.
- Dog food, dog treats, and dog-related accessories for blogs about dogs.
- Bookmarks for blogs about reading.
- Clothing for blogs about fitness.
You already have a domain and a website in the first place which is a huge advantage, you’d only need to integrate eCommerce, through platforms like Shopify.
5. Selling digital products
Instead of physical products, blog owners can sell digital products too.
The selling of digital products is one of the best monetization methods, simply due to the fact that the blog owner wouldn’t need to do product shipments and worry about lost or damaged products.
Though, digital products also have their downsides. Being digital, digital products can be pirated and distributed publicly without the blog owner’s consent.
6. Sponsored content
If someone actually contacted you for sponsored content, congratulations. It means that your blog already has some brand awareness to it.
The way it works is pretty much the same as how racers in NASCAR do it. If you’re a decent racer, businesses and brands will pay you good money to place their brand on the car you’re going to drive, for publicity.
So, how does it work in the blogging world?
Once a certain blog gains traction and it reaches the attention of some brands and websites, they can simply message the blog owner through their email address or contact form on their blog, and pay them a certain amount of money to publish a blog post written by them that has links to their product and/or website.
Sometimes though, they simply ask you to alter a certain blog post that you’ve written, and just add a link to their product or website.
How much do they usually pay?
It really varies a lot. The payments can be as low as $50 for very small blogs, to upwards of thousands of dollars if your blog is big enough.
Frequently seen on certain YouTube channels, monetizing through a membership platform like Patreon is also one way of monetizing a blog or website.
With membership plans, the blog owner’s readers can pay for a monthly plan(that varies in price), in exchange for things like:
- Exclusive access to a group, mostly through Slack or Discord.
- Exclusive access to a weekly/monthly Q&A.
- Exclusive access to behind-the-scenes content.
- Exclusive access to certain blog posts.
- Early access to certain content.
This method of monetization mostly works great if the blogger has a big community that’s highly positive about their content, and if the community likes to engage a lot.
8. Coaching & Mentoring
This pretty much somewhat also fall under the “selling services” category.
The slight difference is that instead of selling services like car repairs, web design, blog post writing, and such, with blogs that provide coaching and mentoring, they have scheduled voice chats or video calls with their clients.
Coaching and mentoring may be a one time conversation and payment, or it can also be in the form of a subscription.
Coaching and mentoring is mostly best used in these niches:
- Startups and entrepreneurship
- Investing and finance
- Forex/Crypto/Stocks trading
- Personal development
Blog owners can monetize their blogs in whatever way they want, with these monetization methods having their own strengths and weaknesses depending on the blog’s niche, and depending on the blog’s content in general.
With that said, if you’re because you’re planning on starting your own blog to hopefully earn sweet sweet passive income in the future, check this out: The Cheapest Way of Starting a Blog