Blogs are a great way to make money online — so much so that today many successful bloggers make a full-time income from their blogs.
Read on for a step-by-step guide on how to make money blogging.
Table of Contents
- How to start a blog
- How to make money blogging
- How to start a blog and make money FAQ
- Summary of How to start a blog and make money
Here are five steps to take to help your website succeed:
1. Pick the right topic
It could be the most frequently cited piece of writing advice: write what you know. This is especially true when it comes to your own blog.
When you’re starting your own site, it’s important to center it around issues that you’re both passionate and knowledgeable about.
This will help you stay motivated to create new content frequently, which will be essential to your blog’s popularity. You’ll also be more likely to create engaging, truly helpful content that readers are likely to share in social media.
Additionally, writing about topics you have established expertise on increases your credibility and authority — which can help you both grow an audience and improve your ranking in search engine results.
Put simply, a domain name is the name of your website, or what comes after the “www” in a web address.
To purchase a domain name, look for a domain registrar — a company that sells and registers website domains — that’s accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). ICANN is a nonprofit organization that coordinates IP addresses and namespaces on the internet. You can also do it directly with a web hosting company, many of which typically offer a free domain name for a year with a hosting plan subscription.
You can choose your new domain name before building your website or later on, if you decide to start with a free blog domain. However, it’s a good idea to buy it as soon as you have an official brand or blog name.
You’ll also have to decide on a domain extension or a top-level domain (TLD). Even though there are hundreds of domain extension options, .com and .net are the most popular and are usually given preference by search engines like Google.
3. Select a hosting service
To get your blog online, you’ll need a web hosting service.
A web host is a company that can store, maintain and manage access and traffic to your website. A web hosting service is necessary — it gives your website a home, and without it you wouldn’t be able to publish your site on the internet.
Most web hosting providers, including popular options such as Bluehost, Dreamhost, SiteGround and GoDaddy, offer three types of hosting services.
Shared hosting: Refers to a service where a single web server hosts many websites. It’s one of the most popular types of web hosting, and affordable since the server is shared with multiple users.
4. Choose a blogging platformA blogging platform is a web-based service that allows users to create, manage and publish blog posts. Most blogging platforms also include tools for optimizing your website with metadata, title descriptions and keywords that make it easy for search engines to identify what the page is about.
Many popular blogging platforms offer both free and paid options, including some of the most widely used sites like WordPress, Medium, Weebly and Blogger. There are also website builders like Wix and Squarespace, which require less tech-savviness.
Many blogging platforms already come with pre-made themes that you can customize. A theme typically includes templates, layouts, colors, images and other features you need to format the website and its content. Get infinity pro theme here
But your theme affects much more than your page’s looks — your blog’s theme can also impact your ranking in search engine results. When choosing a template, do some research first and make sure it’s responsive, loads quickly, is mobile-friendly and works with plugins.
5. Publish your first blog post
Once you’ve picked a web hosting service, a blogging platform and a theme for your website, you’re ready to start your blogging journey.
The key to generating page traffic is to create original, high-quality content and publish new blog posts on a regular basis.
Keep in mind what potential readers are looking for and why (otherwise known as the user search intent), your blog’s central theme, and what others have already published on the topic. This way you can identify what needs to be written or how to present the information in an original and creative way.
Keyword research through Google Analytics (or even just Google Search) is key to finding relevant content ideas. Learning proper search engine optimization (SEO) techniques is also essential if you want to increase traffic to your site and rank higher in the results page. Get SEO Checklist here
1. Display ads
A simple way to start earning some revenue is to sell ad space.
Letting brands advertise on your page has many advantages, especially since it doesn’t require a big time investment from you.
There are two ways to generate income selling ad real estate:
Cost per click (CPC): Also known as pay per click (PPC), this means you get paid each time users click on an ad shown on your website.
Cost per thousands (CPM): Also known as cost per mile, this lets you negotiate a set price for every 1,000 impressions (or views) the ad gets.
To get started, you’ll need to create an account with an advertising network, such as Google AdSense, Mediavine, BuySellAds, PropellerAds or other similar platforms.
Many bloggers sample products or services and review them on their site using affiliate links (or tracking links) that redirect readers to the sellers’ website.
This process is known as affiliate marketing and it lets you earn a commission for every sale, click, lead or transaction your content generates to a seller or company.
There are several affiliate programs and networks you can join, including some from popular stores and e-commerce sites. These include:
eBay Partner Network
Joining an affiliate program will let you find a list of products to review and tools that let you keep track of links’ performance and increase conversion rate — that is, the number of users that complete a desired action or transaction in your site.
3. Sell products
Selling your own products or services is another good monetization method for a blog.
Make time to create products that add value to your readers and visitors, preferably things that tie in with your blog. While these can be physical products — for example, books or photographic prints — they can also be digital products like PDFs or audio files that your readers can download.
Most web hosting providers and blogging platforms have widgets and other features that you can add to create an online store. These are typically known as plugins, which are a bit of code that give your website added functionality. Plugins give you the ability to add secure contact forms, optimize your images or create online stores.
4. Post sponsored content
Many popular bloggers seek out sponsorships, that is, they get a company to pay them to write sponsored posts that promote or talk about its products.
Let’s say you occasionally upload tutorial videos to your photography blog showing how you edit photos in a particular app or software. You could then approach the app manufacturer and ask whether they’d be interested in sponsoring that particular post.
Typically, to get a sponsorship you have to reach out to a brand and make a pitch. Your pitch should include a brief explanation of who you are and what you do, along with details on your blog’s performance, such as audience demographics and traffic statistics.
5. Create a membership
Some readers may be willing to pay for a membership plan to get access to exclusive content, such as downloadable PDFs, in-depth articles, forums, podcasts, online courses or subscription boxes.
Subscriptions can be set up using membership-builder plugins. There are many popular options you can install easily, such as:
- WooCommerce Memberships
- Restrict Content Pro
6. Create a newsletter
With the right email marketing strategy and a large enough email list, you could also create a profitable newsletter.
Creating a profitable newsletter involves some of the same strategies that monetizing your blog entails. For example, you could reach out to a brand your readers would be interested in and offer advertising space in your newsletter.
You could also do affiliate marketing: mention or recommend a particular product within the newsletter and add its tracking — or affiliate — links. This way you can receive a commission for every transaction your subscribers complete.