“So how do you make money through a blog?” is the #1 question people ask me when they find out I’m a blogger. I posted a post recently about the 9 Blog Posts That Will Always Make Money I always want to say I write my a** off! And this is true. Some pro bloggers say you can post too much. There’s too much content out there. I don’t believe this. Let me digress, if you post a lot of mundane content that your readers don’t give a crap about…then true. Post worthy relevant content that your audience wants and can’t get enough of, the money will come in. This post outlines exactly what I do to earn money blogging, how I do it and how you can make money blogging too!
This post contains affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase we get a commission from our partners which helps keep our blog running. Please read our disclosure for more information.
Related: 6 Proven Ways to Monetize Your Blog
How to Earn Money With a Blog
Boom! I started this blog in Feb. of 2018. Income deets are below.
When I first started blogging I immediately signed on for Google AdSense but I wasn’t pleased by how spammy the ads looks. Some of them were not too bad but some were downright cheesy looking.
I didn’t feel the couple of cents I was making for them was worth compromising the look of my blog.
So I switched over to choosing only affiliate products and partnering with well known highly reputable programs that provided outstanding products and services and used myself.
Here are some of the best ones that helped me earn the money:
- ShareASale: Is a popular affiliate network. It includes popular merchants such as Tailwind, Stella and Dot and thousands of others.
- Skimlinks – Another very popular affiliate network. Over 48,000 Global merchants like Ulta, Target, Expedia, Priceline, Sam’s Club and more.
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: I know practically every blogging site pushes this course but it is a very practical and simple way to learn affiliate marketing. However if you’re looking for a FREE affiliate marketing course I’d recommend this one from the SheApproach.
- Bluehost: This is the host I am using for my blog and I’ve had no issues with it since I’ve begun. I wrote a post about how to start a blog in 5 simple steps that can help you get started.
- Clickbank – Another highly popular Global affiliate network filled with merchants in every niche. Affiliate marketers have made thousands of dollars with Clickbank. I wrote a post containing a tutorial on Clickbank and how to get started.
- How To Make Money As An Amazon Affiliate – This eBook helped me to learn all the little secrets about how to get started making money from Amazon. I always wondered how people seemed to be making money so easily from Amazon and now I know! I also promoted it on Pinterest and on my blog. It’s a great resource by Laura Iancu, and I recommend it highly.
For more of the best resources you will need to start and run a successful money making blog go here.
The Exact Steps I Take to Make Money Blogging
- I picked a blog niche and chose a name
- I registered for a self hosting blog
- I read Jon Morrow’s Smart Blogger, ProBlogger, and Blog Tyrant
- I went from 200 to 380K viewers on Pinterest with the help of this amazing strategy book
- I read the Copybloggers tips on how to write magnetic headlines
- I started an email list and developed Mega Library of Freebies for my list to share great tips for free.
- I made my first affiliate sale by recommending Victoria Pruett’s Make Money Blogging At Any Level – Even If You Have Low Page Views. Extremely helpful even if you have low traffic! A common problem.
- I took the FREE Wealthy Affiliate course and Michelle’s Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing Course.
- I sent out broadcast emails whenever I thought of a great solution that would help my readers – I also switched to Convertkit which boosted my conversion rate immensely!
- I wrote consistent blog posts every week. Approximately 3-4.
- I created 3 new pins with Canva for each of my blog posts and kept scheduling them to Pinterest using Tailwind.
- I stopped looking at Google Analytics every single day! But I did take note of which posts were the most popular to know what my audience likes to read.
- I revised and pushed out these posts more and embedded more affiliate marketing links in the posts so that the article could be monetized as much as possible.
- I wrote more content related to my most popular posts.
- I obtained lots of Freelance writing jobs due to my blog – people and companies were contacting me!
- I remained patient, stayed positive, did not compare, and did not let self doubt get the better of me!
Google AdSense: $83.00
Freelance Writing: $21,000.00
Other affiliate programs: $3,369.00
eBook/digital products: $12,495
Website Sale – $2500
Social Media: $6,250
Amazon Affiliates – $116.00
Commissions from Services – $500
Total – $54,583
What I Learned About Blog Money
1. Getting rich from ad income takes a ton of traffic
Unless you get a hundred thousand page views per month, like Buzzfeed, Huffington Post, PennyHoarder, or another Viral type blog you can’t make big bucks from a network like Google Adsense.
I’m not saying it’s impossible though. The guy who started Viral Nova did it and then sold it for a huge profit. It just takes a huge amount of content generated on a daily basis.
In my case I only earned a measly $83 from my ads when I was on Google Adsense. Plus like I said, I hated the way they looked and it also made my bounce rate go way up!
I think the cleaner you can make your blog look and exchange ads for opt ins the better off your blog will do.
Now there are other higher paying ad networks like MediaVine, Monumetric and Adthrive and others but those require a certain amount of traffic as well.
Monumetric is the lowest at 10K PV monthly.
You can read the requirements for traffic for each ad network in this post:
2. Affiliate marketing takes longer but is far more lucrative
I knew right away I wasn’t going to get the traffic from Google Adsense so I switched gears to affiliate marketing. Thank goodness I did.
It takes a little longer to implement the links into your site but if you use a nifty plugin called ThirstyAffiliates – once it’s set up it’s totally automatic. You just add your keywords, and your link is embedded in your posts or pages or wherever you want it.
I partner with several top notch companies and bloggers who create elite material, and most importantly I know they will help my audience grow their traffic and improve their businesses, and for this I get a commission from them.
The company makes a sale, my reader gets a great product for no extra cost from clicking my link. It’s a win/win situation all around.
Now I don’t worry about traffic as much, I focus more on attracting more readers in my target audience and solving problems they have.
If I can recommend products or services that will help them along the way and help me as well, now that’s a good thing!
3. It’s tough to get sponsored posts as a newbie blogger
Just so you know, most of the companies that handle them like Izea and others require that bloggers have a certain number of followers or traffic. But! If you have <2,000 followers you can sign up with certain companies as a micro-influencer.
This can take some time but provide you with a lot of inspiration because this is where the big moola is!