Blogging 101: How to Make Blogging Pay

584264_savings_bank-250x176If you’re looking for some extra cash to buy the things, monetize your blog.

If you’re looking to build an empire that will support you for the rest of your days, monetize your blog.

If you don’t care about money but you like to get free stuff in the mail. . . . you can do that with your blog, too.

Here’s a quick overview of how you can make money with your blog. (But really, if you’re creative, you can come up with even more ideas than these.)

Put Ads on Your Blog

Running ads on your blog is one of the easiest ways to make money. There are three ways you can go:

Google AdSense

Most of those boxy ads you see on blogs come from Google AdSense. When people click those ads, the person who owns the blog makes money. Now, let’s be clear, that we’re not talking about a lot of money. You might get a penny, but sometimes you get $1 (but that’s rare) so it’s fun to log on to the site every day and see how you did. It’s free to signup, but you do have to be over 18. If you’re not, ask your parent or guardian to sign up for you. There are a few other rules which you can read about here.

Once you have an account, you create ads to fit your site then copy and paste the codes into your blog widgets. (Remember, this is an over-view, not a detailed course. We’ll get to that later.) If you use Blogger for your blog, you can put your AdSense code in your profile and earn money. You can also earn by listing your AdSense code with YouTube. (Those banner ads you see over videos – that’s how people get paid.)

AdSense will only payout when you hit $100, so it might take a while to get your first check but the more traffic you have on your site, the sooner you’ll get paid.

Ad Networks

Many of the ads you see on the web come from Ad Networks. You can sign up for these once you have traffic coming into your blog. They match your blog up with customers then give you the code to post either banners or text links. You get paid a fee for running the ads. I have a blog with three small text links and I get paid $45 a month from Linkworth to run them. Other networks include Chitika, Rivit Media (for craft and DIY bloggers), and Glam Media (fashion and beauty).

Sell Your Own Ads

If you want more control, you can sell ads on your own blog. You’ll need a Paypal account to collect the money and a page explaining your pricing. If you’re on WordPress, there are plugins that will do a lot of the work for you but it’s not necessary when you’re just getting started. Charge on the low side to start then raise your prices as your traffic increases.

Tip: Most bloggers put ads in the sidebar and in the footer of each post. Some people take it a little further with pop-up ads and ads that appear when you roll over words. Don’t go crazy and drive your readers away with annoying, moving ads or so many ads they can’t find the content.

Affiliate Advertising

There are thousands of companies that are willing to pay you a few cents to a few dollars if you help them sell their products or services. This is called Affiliate Advertising. The most well-known affiliate program is Amazon Associates.

See that ad on the left? That’s an Amazon affiliate ad. If you click and buy that book, I get some money. Instead of an ad, I could write a review about this terrific book for fashion bloggers and just post a link. That link (back there), has my code in it, so again, if you buy, I get a little money.

Amazon also offers dozens of different widgets and store fronts for your blog. They even has a widget where your readers can sample the songs you picked. If they buy, you get a portion of the cost.

But Amazon isn’t the only affiliate system. If you join a system such as Commission Junction, LinkShare, or Share-a-Sale you’ll have access to hundreds of programs selling everything from accessories to WordPress themes. Every site has its own rules, so read them before signing up.

Another way to find an affiliate program is to look for a link on your favorite online store. Usually, you’ll find a link in the footer on the home page. If you love a store and can’t find a link, write them and ask. Maybe they’ll set up an arrangement just for you.

Affiliate links can be huge moneymakers around the holidays. Fill your posts with great gift ideas with affiliate links and you could make a year’s worth of money in one month.

Write Reviews

Many bloggers charge anywhere from $25 to $150 to write a review or run a giveaway. This is on top of the free item which the company has to provide. In order to do this, you’ll have to prove that you have either enough traffic on your blog or followers on Twitter or Facebook to make it worthwhile.

If you like getting free things, offer to do reviews for free. If you’re good at it you can get make-up, books, CDs, DVDs, food and accessories free just for writing about them on your blog. If it’s a nice item but you don’t want to keep it (like a DVD for a movie you’ve seen), you can sell the item on eBay and that’s more money in your pocket. Note: if you’re writing about something you got for free, you must disclose this information at the bottom of your post.

Sell Something

The best way to make big money on your blog is to sell something you created. This can be an ebook you wrote or a craft item you made. You can also sell your time and expertise, for example if you run a make-up blog, sell one-on-0ne make-up consultations over Skype.

Ask for Donations

If you have a lot of readers and they love your work, you can use PayPal to put a donation button on your blog. You’d be surprised how many people will click it and give you anywhere from a $1 to $10 thank you tip.

 Photo by mailsparky

Do you have ideas for how to make money on your blog, or questions about anything covered here? Use the comment box to talk back.

  1. April 24, 2014
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