Did you know that bloggers can make up to $10 million a year? Want to learn how to be one of them? You came to the right place. In this article, you will learn how to make money from blogging.
What Exactly is a Blog?
A blog is a website that is updated regularly with various content, known as blog posts. The content can be anything from text, pictures, and videos.
Popularized in 1999, the term “blog” is actually a shortened version of “weblog.” Since then, blogs grew rapidly with the launch of Blogger and followed by WordPress several years later.
Initially, blogs were owned by individuals and contained personal stories. But over time they evolved and became valuable marketing tools.
Today, blogs are a powerful outlet to express yourself, educate others, and start a business.
How to Start a Profitable Blog?
Making money from blogging is very achievable. But first, you need to create a fantastic blog that everyone will love!
1. Get Hosting
The first step you need to take when creating a profitable blog is to choose good web hosting services.
It takes care of all the technical elements (backend), so your blog will always be up and running. That way, you can focus on crafting good content that generates income streams.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money on hosting. In fact, host your blog for free with 000webhost.
It’s a perfect choice for people who are just starting out with blogging. And when you need more resources, feel free to upgrade with Hostinger premium plans.
Registering on 000webhost is super easy. All you need to do is to go to our homepage and sign up by using your email or Facebook account. After confirming your email, you can start building your blog right away.
2. Get a Domain Name
Choosing a perfect domain name is an important step to become a successful blogger. The rule of thumb is to choose a name that is simple, short, and memorable.
Take your time when picking the right name because it is an essential element of your brand. If you’re feeling stuck, use domain name generators to help you out. It’ll give you thousands of suggestions and check the availability of your desired domain name.
By default, 000webhost will give you a free subdomain name (yourblog.000webhostapp.com).
But if you want to have something shorter like yourblog.com, you can grab a premium domain name from Hostinger. The price ranges from $0.99 to $8.99, depends on the domain extension (.com, .net, .co, etc).
3. Choose a CMS
The best way to make a beautiful blog is by choosing the right CMS (Content Management System). It’s a software that enables you to create, modify, and manage your blog with ease.
As you must know, there are many CMSs available out there. But we always recommend the time-tested WordPress to any blog owners.
With WordPress, you get to select from thousands of themes. What’s more, tons of plugins are available if you need to add more functionality to your blog. All of this can be done easily due to the software’s user-friendly interface.
Installing WordPress can be done manually, but 000webhost makes it even easier by providing a one-click installer. After you created your site with the Build Website button, choose the Install WordPress option and click Install Now. And that’s it! You can start customizing your blog immediately.
4. Decide on Your Niche
If you want to make money from blogging, your blog should have a focus or niche. Writing anything and everything never works and won’t take you anywhere.
Make sure your niche is something that you love or know a lot about. A lot of bloggers failed because they lost interest after a few months. Hence, a topic that you’re passionate about will prevent you from making the same mistake.
Before settling down to a particular topic, research whether your chosen niche is profitable or not. The easiest way to do this is by using Google Keyword Planner.
Use Keyword Planner to search for keywords that are related to your niche market. It’ll show you the average monthly searches, competition, and cost per click. From there, you can decide if your desired niche can generate an income:
- Choose keywords that have sufficient monthly search volume.
- Avoid keywords with high competition because the market is already saturated. Try to pick another one that has lower competition but still has a decent monthly search.
- Pay attention to cost per click (CPC). Keywords with high CPC are usually profitable because it has tons of monthly searches.
Other additional tools you can use are Google Search Console and Google Trends.
Search Console can show you the number of impressions, number of clicks, CTR (click-through-rates), and the average position on SERPS. Meanwhile, Google Trends lets you examine whether a keyword’s trend is increasing or declining.
After you’re sure you’ve chosen the right niche, try to come up with at least five content pieces. If you can do it effortlessly, then congratulations! You just found a perfect niche for your blog.
But if it’s hard for you to do so, it’s better to find another topic.
5. Brand Your Blog
Wondering how to make your blog stand out from competitors? Branding is the answer.
A brand gets people to recognize what your blog is about and who you are. They know what to expect from you. And if you meet their expectations, they’ll stick around. It gets your blog off the ground, attracts loyal readers, and eventually makes money from blogging.
Branding your blog is not as complicated as you thought it would be. Some simple tricks can make a lot of difference and help you to make money from blogging:
- Pick a visually appealing theme. It should be simple and easy to navigate.
- Be consistent. You must have a “house style” that helps you to be consistent in all of your articles. All blog posts should have the same formatting, tone, and style.
- Create social media accounts. Try to have one username for all your accounts so people can find your blog easily.
- Post regularly. Whether it’s daily, weekly, or bi-weekly, stick to the same schedule so people know when to expect the next update.
- Embed social media buttons. Your readers can share your contents easily and help you to reach a wider audience.
Other than the simple tips above, the next step in branding your blog is to think about your strength. What can you do to make your blog different and memorable? Use that to your advantage and people will love that about you.
For some inspiration, take a look at Nomadic Matt, one of the most popular travel blogs on the internet. He got all the basics covered like a catchy name and a beautiful layout.
But what makes his blog unique is the detail of his blog posts. All of his travel guides include photos, maps, costs – any valuable information! When most travel blogs only cover the basics, but he goes beyond that and takes it to the next level.
6. Create a Strong Marketing Campaign
If you want to make money blogging means you have to turn visitors into customers. To do this, you have to understand that there are several stages in marketing: Awareness, Consideration, Conversion, Loyalty, and Advocacy.
A strong marketing campaign must address those five stages.
Awareness is the initial stage where new visitors learn who you are. What you have to do is engage them with various informative content so they’ll become attached to your blog. Make them feel you’re a helpful friend who can solve any of their problems.
Once your readers feel they know you, they’ll be ready to read more targeted content — that is, a content that demonstrates the use of your products (could be your own products or affiliate products. We’ll talk about this later).
Sway them to consider what you recommend. This is the strategy in the Consideration stage.
After successfully passing the first two stages, entice your readers to make a purchase. Give them incentives like discounts, promotions, or free trials. Incentives create the fear of missing out and urge them to buy immediately.
Now, your marketing strategy doesn’t end when a customer makes a purchase. Engage with them so your readers will stay loyal to your blog. Plus, there’s a chance they recommend you to their friends and families.
Reply to their comments, interact in social media sites, and keep rolling out awesome content.
How to Make Money Blogging?
Making money from blogging takes time as you need to have enough traffic first. Once that’s covered, follow the tips below and turn your blog into a money-making machine.
1. Use Adsense
The easiest and the most popular way of making money from blogging is by using Google Adsense. It’s a service that allows you to earn money by placing ads on your blog.
Using this ad service is a great way to have an extra passive income because website owners (publishers) get paid each time the ad is clicked.
This system is known as paid per click or PPC. But you have to reach the minimum amount ($100) to get paid. If you don’t, Google will send your money next month.
Getting started with Adsense is easy. You only need to have a Google account and then complete the application form. Some of the sign-up requirements include your website URL, website language, and account type (personal or business).
But before registering, make sure to read the Adsense program policies first. Google is very strict with their rules and can terminate your account without notice. What’s worse, once terminated, you can’t join the program again.
2. Use WordPress Advertising Plugins
As mentioned earlier, advertisements are a great way to make money from blogging. Unfortunately, WordPress doesn’t offer proper ads management features. You have to do everything manually.
This is where advertising plugins come in handy.
The biggest advantage of advertising plugins is the ability to insert ads anywhere on your blog.
Usually, you have to use a widget when inserting ads and thus, they are only displayed in a widget-ready area. But with the help of plugins, you can put ads wherever you want without a hassle.
Ads placing is not the only benefit you’ll get. Other common features among popular advertising plugins are:
- Ad scheduling. Set when an ad starts and ends.
- Ad grouping. Create a group that contains multiple ads with common target keywords.
- Ad rotation. Display different ads each time the page is loaded.
- Statistic reports. View the number of clicks and impressions each ad has.
When you’re just learning how to make money from blogging, we suggest using AdRotate. It’s free and includes all the basic features to manage ads. To have other advanced features, you can upgrade to premium plans as your blog grows.
3. Write Sponsored Posts
As ad blocking becomes more common and is forecasted to cost $35 billion by 2020, a lot of blog owners switch their focus to write sponsored posts.
The concept is pretty simple: a brand pays you upfront to write a blog post promoting their brand.
A good old fashioned example of a sponsored article is one that highlights a brand’s goals and contributions.
To illustrate, take a look at Technically’s article on Penji, a graphic design service with a unique subscription model. They did a perfect job in conveying the company’s commitment to offering a hassle-free design service. Eventually, it became the go-to choice for startups in Philadelphia, USA.
However, sometimes a brand doesn’t ask you to write an article about them. Sponsoring an article that’s related to their industry is enough. An example of this case is a review on Dremel by Molly McClung. The post is sponsored by Home Depot (a home improvement retailer), but it’s never mentioned in the article other than in the sponsorship disclaimer.
Now, you must be wondering on how to get sponsored? Well, reach out to brands and pitch your blog — tell them why your blog is worth their money.
When you’re just a beginner, the best option is to contact small to medium local businesses as they are more responsive and open to small blogs.
The money might not be much, but it can help to build your portfolio.
Over time, when you have enough experience in your hands, you can pitch to more prominent brands and make more money from blogging.
4. Become an Affiliate
As an affiliate, you make money by recommending the products or services via an affiliate link.
The way it works is pretty simple: write a review of a product and provide the affiliate link. Each time a reader purchases through your link, you’ll earn a commission.
The great thing about becoming an affiliate is you don’t need to have high traffic to start. Anyone can join an affiliate program because you are paid per sale instead of per article.
It’s a fantastic method to make money from blogging when you’re just starting out.
There are tons of affiliate marketing programs out there. Some popular examples are Amazon Affiliates, eBay Partners, and Shopify Affiliate Program. Picking one can be tricky, but you can check out our list of the best affiliate programs to help you make an informed decision. These programs cover all the different niches you can imagine, most profitable of them being health products like supplements, organic foods, or even mattresses with such big players ahead like Casper mattress.
After joining a program, remember some tips below when writing an affiliate article:
- Pick a product within your blog’s niche. Don’t go out of your niche because it’ll confuse your readers.
- Choose products or services that you personally love and use. Make sure you’ve tested the product and write an honest review. That way, you will sound authentic and relatable.
- Tell your readers about your affiliation. Readers will appreciate your honesty and you’ll gain their trust
- Write a story, not an advertisement. No hard selling of the products. The article should be informative and fun.
- Be patient. Earning no income in the early stages is normal, so don’t be discouraged. Be on the lookout for different programs and different products and see which one works best for your audience.
5. Get Paid to Write Reviews
Another popular method to make money blogging is by writing paid reviews. It’s a specific type of sponsored posts that focus on reviewing your sponsor’s products instead of promoting their brand.
To get sponsored reviews, you’ll need to build your experience first. Write reviews of products you’ve tested before as many as possible and post it to your blog. Then when you think you already get the hang of it, try to contact several brands and ask them to sponsor you.
It’s important to note that even though you are paid to write a review, you still have to be honest to your readers. They trust you to give them the best product recommendation, so don’t take it for granted and ruin your bond with them. It will just drive traffic away.
6. Create Private Content
Have you ever stumbled upon a news website that you absolutely love? You come back over and over again and then finds out some articles are private. They’re accessible only after you subscribe to the website.
Making money blogging by creating private content works the same way. Once your blog has plenty of loyal readers, take advantage of it and create premium content.
Readers would not hesitate to spend a few bucks on useful and good quality articles.
The easiest way to manage your private content is to use a membership site platform like Patreon.
You’ll decide how much the monthly subscription is and then post all your exclusive content there. Don’t worry about any membership management because Patreon does all the job for you.
A little tip when you decide to do this method is to be consistent. The ultimate goal is to make readers extend their subscription every month, so keep your content quality high and post regularly.
7. Sell Products or Services
When your blog has been around for a while and gathers a significant number of followers, selling your own products is a great option to make money blogging. After all, you get to keep all the money to yourself.
Creating your own products may sound complicated. You have to research what your audience wants, produce the product, and then market it.
Phew! So much work!
But if you do it right, your blog can be like Create and Go which made $71,623 in February 2019 (only by selling their ebooks and online courses!)
So, what can you sell? Well, most bloggers choose to sell digital products because they cost less than physical products. What’s more, you can distribute it to a global audience without having to worry about shipping.
To give you an idea, below are some examples of products and services that you can sell from your blog:
- Ebooks (guides and courses).
- Printables (planners, art prints, calendars, worksheets, etc).
- Online courses (could be in the form of texts or videos, but videos are more popular).
- Professional services (web design, translation, copywriter, etc).
- Music and podcasts.
Making money from blogging takes time and a lot of work. But in the long term, being a successful blogger can be fun and open many doors of opportunities.
Let’s take a look one more time at several ways to make money blogging:
- Adsense — perhaps the easiest way out of the bunch, but you have to make the minimal amount before receiving the money.
- Advertising plugins — easily manage all your ads to make the most out of them.
- Sponsored posts — you don’t have to wait to be paid because the payment is upfront, but it takes time to work with bigger brands.
- Affiliate programs — perfect for beginners because anyone can be an affiliate.
- Paid reviews — the most popular form of sponsored posts so there are many opportunities.
- Private contents — loyal readers would not hesitate to enjoy your exclusive content.
- Selling products and services — requires the most work but can be the most profitable method.
Try those methods above and turn what was once a hobby into a part-time or even full-time business. Good luck!