Is blogging dead? This is a question that gets asked a lot. Blogging is ABSOLUTELY not dead! But it does look different than it did 5 years ago or even 1 year ago.
Because blogging has become so popular, there’s a myth floating around that it’s ‘too crowded’ of a space, that you can’t make ‘real’ money, and that blogging has ‘peaked.’
I’m here today to tell you that blogging is not only alive and well but you can make money from starting a blog!
AND: even if you’ve blogged before or have already started a small blog, this will be a good refresher on the latest ways that blogs make money.
Starting a Blog 101
Before we dive into the specifics of how blogs make money, we need to cover some blogging basics. A blog won’t make money if it doesn’t have a foundation in these 3 basic areas…
In order to start a blog that makes money, your blog needs to have:
1. A Specific Category:
You know how I mentioned the myth that blogging has become ‘to crowded’ of a space? Well, this is true in one sense: it’s true if you don’t have a specific enough category for your blog. If you set out to start the next great food, or exercise, or mom blog — you will have a tough time getting noticed.
You need to be more specific. For example, instead of creating a general food blog, focus on the specific category of ‘30 minute budget recipes’ or ‘healthy meals for busy moms.’
By choosing a niche, specific category for your blog you’ll stand out among competitors. And you’ll be able to open doors to monetize your blog more effectively (more on this below!).
2. Strong Content:
At the core of any blog is one thing: CONTENT. Content is KING in the blogging world.
This is arguably the most important section of this entire post. In order to start a blog that makes money, you need high-quality content. You need images that are high-resolution photographs, blog posts that are written well, and you need to be posting to your blog consistently.
Content should be engaging, valuable, and have plenty of elements that connect with your ideal audience. Content like this is what will draw a following that will allow you to make money.
3. Marketing Strategy:
Last but not least, every blog needs a marketing strategy. Your marketing strategy is how you get the word out about your blog. It’s how people find you. When you first start your blog this is probably a mix of posting to social media and word of mouth.
The point is: you need to be strategic about how you market your blog in order for it to grow. This could be a regular social media posting schedule, growing an email list, etc.
But in order for your blog to make money, you need to be intentional about sharing & marketing it.
SO that’s it for blogging basics in about a 3 minute summary!
There’s A LOT MORE to these topics, but for the purposes of starting a blog that makes money this is what you need to know.
- Your blog needs a specific category.
- Your blog needs to have high-quality content.
- Your blog needs a marketing strategy.
And then we can get to the exciting part: monetizing your blog.
How do Blogs Make Money?
We won’t get into the technical aspects of starting a blog in this article. If you need a step-by-step guide guide to choosing a topic, building a website, and marketing your blog, check out Launch Your Online Business in 5 Weeks.
We will cover the exact ways that blogs make money…
Blogs make money in a variety of ways. And the blogs that perform best often thrive by using many revenue streams.
NOTE: You may read some of the blog revenue streams below and think ‘that’s not for me’ or ‘that wouldn’t work for my blog,’ BUT you might be surprised!
Even if some of these don’t seem like a fit at the moment, there’s a chance that they will be at some point in your blogging journey:
Here’s 5 Ways that Blogs Make Money:
1. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is when you share about products on your blog and make a commission if someone purchases through a product linked on your site.
As you start your blog, you can naturally share about products that you love and use; and when you do, include an affiliate link for your readers to buy the product for themselves.
There are many affiliate networks that you can apply to as a blogger. And as you add affiliate links to your site, you’ll need to have a strategy in place.
2. Sponsored Posts
Sponsored posts are when a brand pays you to share about their product or company in a post on your blog.
You can reach out to brands for opportunities for sponsored posts or they can reach out to you.
From Day 1 of your blogging career, begin thinking about brands that your audience would be interested in. And as your blog gains traffic, reach out to them with how a partnership could benefit the brand.
When blogs partner up with brands for sponsored content it can take a variety of forms. It could be simply a written blog post, a blog post + original images, or a social media post.
If you’re interested in getting deals with brands on Instagram, here’s How to Get Brand Sponsorships on Instagram with Less Than 1,000 Followers.
Another popular way to monetize your blog is through ads. Brands or ad networks will pay to advertise on your site. The amount of money that you make through ads will be dependent on your blog’s traffic.
4. Guest Writing
Especially while your blog is new, guest writing can be a lucrative opportunity. If there are other blogs or media sites in your niche that you follow, reach out to see if they are in need of writers.
Guest writing for another site is a way to make money and gain additional exposure if they include a link to you as the author.
Selling products on your blog – either digital or physical products – is one of the most common ways to monetize a blog. Digital products are especially popular.
If your blog gives information on a specific subject, you can turn this knowledge into an ebook or online course and sell it as a product to teach your audience.
Diversify Your Revenue Streams
Your blog might have 1 or 2 revenue streams to start, but over time it’s a good idea to diversify.
Your blog will grow, and your potential for making money from these will only increase. Building a successful blog takes time and consistency, BUT the effort you put into creating a successful blog will pay off as it expands.
And most of the above sources of income can be passive income, which means that they are ways to monetize your blog and allow it to make money 24/7. You can be doing other things while your blog is making money.
Creating Passive Income
This is the best part of why you should start a blog that makes money: now more than ever the opportunities to grow your blog into a business that makes passive income are many.
Creating passive income takes upfront work, but once you have systems and content in place, those passive income streams will work for YOU. Passive income makes money while you sleep, travel, work on other things, etc.
Free Resources To Start A Money-Making Blog
Take the next step to starting your money-making blog today with these 2 FREE resources:
Blog Post: Income Report: How I made $925.64 in My First 3 Months Blogging
Free eBook Download: Start an Online Business for Beginners