There are many ways I make money online. This blog is a humble attempt to document these and tell you that it isn’t rocket science. If I can do it, so can you. After all, that’s the whole motto of my blog in the first place!
Anyway, here are the ways in which I made money in the past, and so can you. I am discussing these methods with respect to my other blog, which is on the topic of penny auctions. My Penny Auctions Blog is a blogspot blog which I started less than an year ago and I already make some good money off it. Here are the ways in which I have monetized it -
1. Google Adsense
This is the simplest method of monetization that I know of. It is simple because you don’t really need to do anything. To get an Adsense account, you just apply for it with Google with a blog or website and you should be approved very soon. Once you are approved, it is easy to earn money with Google Adsense. All you need to do is insert their codes in the blog and you are all set. The advertisements will show automatically.
The reason it is simple is because it is very straightforward. Google will crawl the blog and look for all the relevant keywords. Then it will show the relevant advertisements on the blog. Because Google has the largest database of all advertisers, you can get the best deals. When ads are relevant, people are more likely to click on them. Google Adsense is a pay per click system, so you get paid every time someone clicks on your ads. Remember never to violate their TOS, e.g. by trying to fool Google by clicking your own ads from a different computer, asking friends to click ads for you, etc.
Adsense is good, but it is not the most lucrative. For my blog, Adsense brings in some steady income but it is not the main source of revenue from my blog. There are several other ways to make money from blogs.
2. Direct Advertising: Banner Ads
Direct advertisements through banners is a very good way to make money for bloggers once they get enough traffic to their blog. The more the number of visitors, the more the advertisers will be willing to pay for the banners they place on your blog. How much money you charge depends on many factors. At my blog, the average rate of a 250×250 banner is $50/month, which is not too bad. Blogs that get better traffic will command higher rates.
The main disadvantage of direct advertising is that you have to do the searching. I write to many advertisers in the field of penny auctions and only a few are interested in advertising on my blog. Thus I need to send out multiple emails pitching my blog and if they like it, they will get back. Most of the times I don’t get any replies.
If a blog is more popular, you can always include a link which says ‘Advertise Here’ and you should get advertisers who contact you. I cannot do it for my blog, since it isn’t so big – at least for now!
I will write a detailed post on how you should find advertisers for banners and how to email them about your blog. For now, you should know that it is hard work but it is definitely lucrative.
3. Featured Blog Posts
Featured Blog Posts are an excellent way to earn money as a blogger. For advertisers, they get to publish on a famous blog in the niche with plenty of visitors. In addition, advertisers can get a good dofollow backlink from an authority blog in this area.
So how do featured blog posts work? Well, if a new penny auction comes up with a promotion or news or some other exciting feature that it thinks will attract bidders, it publishes this on my blog as a featured blog post. In return, I get paid for it. The average cost of a featured blog post on my blog is about $25/post but it varies – for regular advertisers, I like to combine banner + featured posts into a single package.
The process of finding advertisers for featured blog posts is similar to the process of finding advertisers for banner ads. You write to individual websites and ask them if they want to buy featured blog posts. You explain how awesome your blog is and what benefit they will derive from it.
4. Selling Backlinks
This is not directly from the blog but through article directories. I have articles published in top article directories like EzineArticles on penny auctions. I offer advertisers a backlink from these sites. Since the articles are already published, I can sell the backlinks as soon as I finalize a deal. Here again, the charge is about $20-25 per backlink. Advertisers know you write quality articles only through your blog and you should contact them as such. Show them the value of high PR backlinks, especially for the new websites.
5. Affiliate Marketing
This is my favorite because it brings in the most revenue. I promote websites on my blog which have affiliate programs. It is important to make sure that the affiliate products/websites that you promote are good quality because as a blogger, reputation is very important and priceless. So I select the best sites in the niche and promote them on my blog. Whenever they get members from my blog, they pay me a percentage of sales.
So here it is, the 5 ways through which I earn money from my blog. What are your favorites? How do you monetize your blog? Don’t forget to share your story!