Blogging is a desirable source of income for both enthusiastic writers and those passionate about digital media. But anyone who has tried to earn a full time income from blogging will know that it can seem impossible at times. The pennies that you might earn from Adsense may seem like the hardest earned pennies you ever made! But is it possible, without dying of exhaustion throughout, of earning enough money from blogging to live off?
The simple answer is yes. The disclaimer is that it’s not easy!! Having a good income from a blog or blogs depends on having established, respected and well visited and linked to blogs. Here are a couple of ways you can go about achieving that:
In This Post:
Stop Expecting an Easy Income
This is obvious for most, but for others, blogging is seen as an ‘easy income’. The fact is that to earn an income from blogging you need at least one well visited blog. This means a lot of high quality and relevant content and it means plenty of time spent commenting on the blogs of others in a similar niche, joining in the conversation and becoming a part of a network.
As briefly mentioned in the previous point, networking is essential. Whatever your niche, the chances are that there are a whole lot of other blogs out there in a similar niche. Whoah, whoah! Wait… you don’t need to give up or send them all hate mail! Instead of seeing this as a negative point, look on it as a positive thing. In each blog niche you can often find an already sizeable network of bloggers who host one another’s links in their blogroll and comment on one another’s posts. This type of networking can be hugely rewarding firstly from a perspective of learning more about your topic from the point of view of others and secondly for obtaining links and traffic to your blog.
Offer to post on blogs in a similar niche. In addition, allow other bloggers to make the occasional guest post on yours. This has the benefit of offering your readers another perspective from time to time and your guest blogger will also plug the post. Essentially, this can only lead to more blogs and more traffic, thus increasing the revenue you can expect to earn from your blog.
There are some very respectable blog directories around, many of them are free. The first free blog directory that springs to mind is Technorati.com. It costs nothing to list and is a great source of information on blogs. In fact, for many it acts as a blog search engine and so listing your blog there increases your chances of obtaining traffic. It can’t hurt, can it?
But what when you already have a blog that is well respected, has a decent page rank and has plenty of traffic? How do you turn that into money?
Adsense and Similar Programs
Adsense is convenient for bloggers insofar as it only picks relevant ads and you can display them wherever you want. But the pay is based on how many clicks you get and how much people are bidding for those clicks. In a competitive area such as personal finance, one or two clicks might bag you a few dollars. But in a less commercial area, for example jokes, it could take literally hundreds to get a few dollars. Unless you have a huge network of great blogs, Adsense is unlikely to produce any real income.
There are ethical questions to be raised around a website that allows you to pay people to write something about your company. There are also questions raised around bloggers who take money to write something nice on a blog. But advertising is advertising. SponsoredReviews.com allows advertisers to pay bloggers for posting a blog post about a certain company, with a back link in. However, while this might seem rather an immoral means of earning an income, SponsoredReviews.com sets certain standards. It specifies in the terms that no blogger should be obliged to lie about a product and the blogger has every right to mention in the post that it is indeed a sponsored post, in most cases. The website will also only accept bloggers whose blogs meet certain criteria, including being 3 months old and maintaining at least a 2:1 ratio of paid to non-paid content. Whatever the ethical questions this type of thing might raise for you, advertisers are paying anything between $1 and $1000 per post, depending on just how good your blog is!
Sell Advertising Yourself
Just because Adsense doesn’t pay life changing sums of money does not mean to say that advertising doesn’t pay. In fact, offering advertising space on your blog can be extremely well paid. Again, it depends on the niche and page rank amongst other factors. But a good quality blog can demand good money for its advertising space. Decide on an advertising setup, for example what type of advertising and the pricing structure and lay it out on a page on your website with contact details. You may be surprised by the level of interest.
Almost all the major stores have affiliate schemes through a major affiliate provider. ClickBank.com and AffiliateWindow.com are two such providers. If you get lots of traffic on your site, an affiliate scheme allows you to list products or services on your site, provided by known retailers. If someone clicks a link to that product from your blog, a cookie is stored on their computer, detailing your affiliate details and anything they purchase from the site then earns you a commission. Amazon have their own affiliate program known as Amazon Associates.
Selling Your Blog
Yes, there are plenty of people keen to purchase an already established and high quality blog. For some, creating, establishing and making a blog ‘good’ before selling it on, is a full time living. And it does pay well. I personally spent a year on three more commercial niche blogs. It was a hobbyist activity more than anything. I was then approached about selling them and offered $3000 for each one. They each had a page rank 4 and were established in their niche, but I wasn’t particularly attached to them. Creating and selling blogs in this way, however, often requires that you buy a domain and host it for your blog rather than just using a free Blogger blog. In the domain, you then have an asset that people are interested in purchasing.
So, in summary, making a real full time living by blogging is possible. It requires a massive time commitment, though and often needs quite a number of blogs to have real success. But commitment and drive do help, as does a passion for blogging. It is much easier to stay motivated if you really do have a passion for it. Good luck!!