With blogging, is it really possible to make money? Can one make a living by blogging? The right answer to both questions is ‘Yes’!
Talking of blogging for money, it is not a conspiracy theory but real. Anybody with the basic idea of blogging, SEO and an idea of how the internet works can start a blogging business to make money.
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About How To Make Money Blogging
Everyone can use a blog to make money online. The amount of money you will make depends on the amount of work you are willing to allocate to make it happen.
It’s not an easy job and it’s not something that will generate results in a few months or even years, it will take time and it needs a LOT of patience. BUT, as I mentioned above, once it happens it’s one of the best jobs in the World!
How Bloggers Earn Money
This current blog you are on as at the moment is a real-life instance of a money earning blog.
The main aim of this blog is to aid your understanding about the procedures you need to take to make money with a blog. This blog will as well help you avoid errors. Also, it will help you stay away from losing valuable time on tasks that won’t contribute to your main goal.
With this blog we have targeted beginners since most of them have difficulties in understanding how the whole thing works out. As stated earlier on, this blog is to help you turn away from the error related ways in order to help beginners master the art of blogging.
Probably, this easy comprehensive step-by-step guide will navigate you in the right course from the genesis. Therefore, give out your maximum best so that you will yield possible results from this blog.
Before we get the ball rolling, these are some stuffs you need to know:
It cannot be referred to as an easy task. It is a tricky and time-consuming procedure involving A LOT of effort and hard work. Yet, it is one of the best and most rewarding jobs in the world.
The reward obtained from building a successful blogging business isn’t mainly about the money. It is mostly about the feeling of achievement and the satisfaction of setting up your own business independently.
Ever wondered why there are many articles on “how to make money with a blog”?
Why is it that those who knew the ins and outs of the business do not keep quiet over it but rather they share the knowledge they have about it to the world?
The answer to this question is quite simple. Which is that, it is the ambition of every blogger to get to a state where they are able to make money online as well as help others who are young in the business.
Making Money With a Blog
We shall take a look at how to make money with a blog from the beginning. We shall cover how most bloggers make money online and how you can also do same.
7 Steps To Follow To Make Money blogging
As the steps go, they as well sound as simple. The good news is that, some is as simple as they sound. Yet, others are not like that. They are tricky and you will need to be prepared with the right information, right tools and a lot more patience.
- Setup your own self-hosted blog
- Start publishing great content
- Build organic traffic to your website
- Build a community around your brand
- Start making money by selling ads
- Make money by selling your own products or services
- Makey money through affiliate marketing
Step 1: Setup Your Own Self Hosted Blog
This is somehow the easiest step amongst the other steps. With getting a domain name, it is as simple nowadays to get one to set up your blog. All you need is a bit of help with the right navigation and then you are good to go!
Going deep with the details on setting up your blog is what we can’t do right now. Instead, you can use our How to Start a Website guide to get yourself, everything you need to know.
In summary, it covers the following topics
- Registering a domain name
- Signing up for hosting
- Setting up WordPress
- Publishing your first blog post!
This is an understanding guide published mainly for beginners in terms of blogging. You are assured it will help save the time involving looking for this information online.
Errors to be avoided when starting a blog
Since you are a novice in blogging, it is normal to make mistakes. That is not supposed to be any big deal if you learn from the mistakes you make. In terms of blogging, these are some tips you need to cultivate in mind.
Keep the center of your attention on your target – making money online
The main reason is to get to a state where you will start making money from your blog. This is what you need not to forget.
Some of the common errors blog beginners commit is that they spend too much time and effort in designing the ‘perfect blog’. Meanwhile as at the early stages, when there is not much traffic coming in, nobody cares about your website’s design, and that includes Google.
You must note that the blog design is important as well. But not too important at early stages. You main focus at this stage is to have an active blog. The content editing is one of the things you will be working on when you start getting traffic.
There is so much work involved in getting traffic (and potential customers), and you should devote your energy on those tasks from the very beginning.
Get your own domain and hosting for your blog
There is one big difference between hosting your website on a free platform like medium.com and having your own domain and your own self-hosted website.
Make sure you come up with the right conclusion from the start and select the right platform as well. So far, a self-hosted WordPress website is your best choice
Maintain it in a straightforward manner
Since you are a beginner in this field, you are advised to keep everything as simple as possible. Trying to overcomplicate things will earn you total confusion.
Since you are now learning, there are many things you will discover which might make you change your mind about most things. So save your time and energy for the more complicated tasks.
Step 2: Begin with publishing outstanding contents
It’s great to have a website up and running.
Now is the moment you get to one of the complicated and challenging chore of bogging. Which is, creating the real content of your blog.
A blog with no content is nothing, a blog with mediocre content is just another blog in the millions of already published blogs, a blog with great content is a money-making business.
Having said that, it is important to understand from the beginning the importance of content for your blog’s success.
Great (good, superb or fantastic – you choose) content, will get you traffic (we will see below how), credibility, and make you money (in different ways).
What ‘Having An Outstanding Content’ means
The main thing about your blog shouldn’t necessarily be the text, or images, or the videos. It should be associated with any of the content with your blog. What it should be is its high rankings on Google as well as other search engines.
As I stated at the beginning, you have to keep it real simple. Then later, you can add up the other part of the contents which is the videos, pictures, etc. But for now, keep it as a text-only blog.
Talking of a magnificent blog, it should contain the following:
- Must be unique. You must not share contents with any other site.
- It must also be error-free in terms of spellings and grammar.
- Must be of meaning, insight, and unbiased.
- Must be about something that helps people do, understand or learn something.
- Also, it must be a readable content.
If you have a hard time understanding the above point, worry not. You will soon understand every single one of them as you go further and your experience increases.
Features of Quality Content
Let’s see how you can practically create good content for your website.
Select a topic that you enjoy reading/researching/writing
Concerning writing a content for your blog, you should actually consider to provide a content that meets the standard of a good content as explained above.
If you have no interests in the topic you are about to make as you content, you will get the project as a difficult and boring project. This will make you give up even before you begin.
A blog that can make money contains very interesting contents. This means that you will have to come up with a lot of interesting ideas and topics.
Work on topics with reasonable looks
It will not be fair if you are the only one who is excited about your content. Consider others too. Others should be able to enjoy your article as well.
Note that, in order to make money from your blog, you will need people to purchase your products. You will as well need advertisers to pay money for your ad space.
If your chosen topic does not have a decent audience, none of it will happen.
The best way to make an initial search as to the potential of your starting is to make a Google search for phrases (keywords) that come to mind.
Take not of the number of outcomes and the various types of websites that appear in the first pages of Google.
Aside from getting a decent audience for your intended topic, make it snappy and specific. This is because there are chances that there are most websites with the same topic.
Popular topics may have a bigger audience. Yet as bigger as the audience, the higher the competition. So if you are a beginner, you will have to compete with other bloggers and not businesses that have teams of writers and SEOs backing them up.
Understand the whole concept this way:
Assuming you are a football fan. If you make a Google search about ‘Football News and Updates’, you will get way too many outcomes. With some from online magazines or websites that have been established for years with more than thousands of content pages.
It is obviously not possible for a new website to compete with any of these websites and online magazines for Google traffic.
What you will have to do is to trim down your topic and use a very specific nook that is still within your interest but will have less competition. And example can be “How to get free football updates”
The method of discovering what you should write in your blog is called the “Keyword Search”
This is a method you need to adapt to master from the very start. You are therefore, recommended that you take time and read the following articles.
Step 3: Build organic traffic to your blog
Let’s brief out the processes we covered so far:
The next step is to conclude the topics to cover in your blog. Also, master the keyword research process as well.
The upcoming task is to commence building organic traffic to your blog. This is what we are going to discuss in this section.
What Organic Traffic means
Organic Traffic Statistics
In order to earn from your blog, you will need organic traffic and not just traffic in general. Organic traffic is that which is generated from search engines especially Google.
The ‘user intent’ is what makes organic traffic more useful than other source of traffic.
When a user types a inquiry in Google’s search box, he or she is expecting answers to a question. It might happen that they also want to learn something or to find information or to buy a product.
Their intent is shown in whatever query or search terms they submit through the search engines.
For instance, a user entering a query as “how to include and SEO audit in my website. It is obvious he is looking for a guide on how to perform an SEO audit.
It is very specific and in order to be qualified to be ranked for that term or related, you need to perform a thorough search on how to perform a manual audit.
As soon as you get this done properly, your blog posts will eventually rank high on Google. This means that you will start getting targeted organic traffic to your blog.
Getting Organic Traffic to your Blog
The most valuable source of traffic as stated earlier is the organic traffic. This is what I recommend for your blog since it’s traffic that converts.
Talking of ‘convert’, it simply mean a number of things like:
- Users will not have problems staying longer on your page.
- Users are more likely to subscribe to your newsletter
- Are more likely to enquire for your services
- Are more likely to buy your products.
The points raised above will be explained into details in the last section of this article. But for now, let cover “How you can get more search engine traffic for your blog”
The Need For A Great Content
This point is already discussed. But we are going to go over once more since it is very necessary. If your content doesn’t meet Google standards, then whatever you will read below will not work.
Getting Accurate Technical SEOs
Technical SEO simply refers to how your blog is set up and how good it is adjusted for search engines.
Your blogging platform (WordPress) is SEO friendly by default. Yet there are certain strings you will need to pull to make it better.
The list below contains what it will take to get the better SEO you will need.
- Blog structure
- URL Structure
- XML Sitemap optimization
- Use of Schema Markups
- Canonical URLs
- Optimizing your category and tag pages
- Website Speed
- Mobile Friendliness and Accelerated Mobile Pages
- Webmaster tools SEO
Are all very important in the process.
Getting your On-Page SEO Accurate
On-page SEO is said to be one step ahead of the technical SEO and has to do with making your blog more visible to search engines.
Below are some On-Page SEO Techniques. These are the kind of things you need to deal with when reviewing your on-page SEO.
- Optimized titles and description
- Post Length
- Use of images and video within your content
- Proper use of Headings and post formatting
- Internal linking best practices for maximum SEO
Working of Your Off-Page SEO
By far, all the steps described for increasing your organic traffic are stuffs you can change or adjust on your website. But another section of getting more traffic from search engines has to do with your off-page SEO
Off-Page SEO has to do with the process of advertising your website on the internet in order to increase the awareness of your products, services and content.
In different terms, what I mean is that you will have to let other website owners know about your existence and what you can do. There are a lot of advantages when you make this out right. They include:
- Search engines ranking a website based on their references or links to other websites is more likely to happen.
- There is more traffic value to it. Which means you will earn more traffic.
- You will establish yourself as an expert in your own niche.
As aforementioned, a good on-page SEO will get you amongst the highest ranks while good off-page SEO will get you to the top positions.
The most popular and effective off-page SEO method is link building.
‘Link Building’ and its Importance
Search engine ranking algorithms always lookout for ways they can understand the quality of websites.
The main intention of a search engine is to suit their users by presenting them with websites that have a good content. Not only presenting their users with good content websites, but also has easy navigation through and in general, are rated as high quality.
Aside from the on-page SEO adjustments, one other way to present your website as a part of these categories is to have external links from other websites pointing to your website’s pages.
Including the other measures taken, incoming links will also rank higher in the SERPS
Link building is one of the very complicated subject matter that most blogging beginners find difficult to comprehend. This is what I know from experience and from the feedback I receive from my blog readers and client.
At this stage, about Link Building, this is what you should know:
- It’s mainly about quality and not quantity. This means that it doesn’t matter how many links you add up to your content. What is needed is the origin.
- Links that are associated with your topic which has more Google trust are what you should be incorporating in your blog and not links from directories or other low-quality websites.
- You will be having serious issues with Google if you engage in black-hat link building practice. That is buying or exchanging links with others.
- Google’s algorithms will penalize your website for trying to manipulate their algorithms and as a result, you will lose all your rankings.
Increasing Blog Traffic through Link Building
Below are some of the most popular link buildings:
- Guest-posting on websites that are bigger and more well-known than yours
- Link to other websites from your content and contact them to let them know. If they find your website useful they may decide to return the favor.
- Introducing your website and content to your webmasters
Step 4: Building Your Brand’s Community
As soon as you get an outstanding content and you start getting traffic,what you should consider next is building a community around your brand.
One of the common errors that beginners commit is that they jump this procedure and go straightforward to the money-making part of the blogging. But it is not the most efficient way.
Prior to making any sale (conversion), you first need to gain user’s trust. And this can only be earned through community building.
Take note of the ‘Brand’ keyword instead of blog.
This is the stage where you need to stop taking your blog as a hobby but as a real business.
When we talk of branding, it is obvious that it is an aspect of the success of any business. And your blog is not an exception to this rule.
There are a lot of things you can take on regarding your branding. For instance, like having a unique slogan, or a distinct logo.
What Community Building for A Blog Means
Community building has to do with your ability to create a community of people that will follow your blog, interact with your content and buy your products as well.
Below are some of the ways by which you can make that happen:
Email marketing has to do with taking your blog’s subscribers as important assets and using your email to notify them when you have new posts. On this platform, you can also request their feedback and also sell to them, products and services.
This is not something that will happen immediately. It is a process and therefore, it will take time. All you need to do is to win their trust by providing authentic information on your blog.
You can also gain their trust by providing value through your emails but at the end of the day, it’s one of the most efficient methods to create a community around your blog.
In my case, 20% of the monthly sales of my SEO courses are generated through my email list.
Social Media networking
There are some people who are not fans of emails. They rather choose social networks to read their news. They generally spend a lot of their time there (on social networks).
What you need to check out is your presence in the channels where you have potential followers.
Talking of the social media networks available, there are many of them in existence. But now that you are a beginner, in terms of establishing your blog’s brand, you must concentrate on those channels that a proven to be more effective than others when it comes to building followers.
Start by building your fan base on Facebook and also spend 10-15 minutes per day on Twitter.
Always have in mind that, your main aim is to connect with people that can become potential followers and customers of your blog. I recommend that you do some profiling and choose your target audience wisely.
Web push notifications
Concerning web push notifications, it is one other way you can connect with your community. People who sign up for push notification are alerted anytime you make a new post.
Replying to comments
This is about replying to comments on your blog. With questions on your blog, trying to ignore them is a very bad approach especially to community building. You will have to reply to their comments very frequently to entice them to continue using your blog.
As time goes on, you will have to visit your old posts and make sure you give replies to every comment that was left in the comment box to help your readers with whatever problems they might be going through.
I don’t approve all comments; I only publish comments that make sense (not spam or self-promoting) and this encourages more people to post their comments.
Step 5: Start Selling Ads to Make Money
I hope you realized the number of things you need to in order to get to the money making part.
We can talk of this blog as a ‘How to make money from blogging’ blog. Yet, if you notice, almost three-quarters of the content is related to activities that come before that (the money making part) and this is how blogging for money works in real life.
Although this blog post is about making money from your blog, almost ¾ of the content is related to activities that come before that and this is how blogging for money works in real life.
By way of remembrance, it is important that you grasp idea that you will not make money from your blog if:
- You have inadequate organic traffic.
- You don’t have very good contents
- You don’t have a decent email list
- You lack a community of loyal followers
After you are through with the above tasks, you can then proceed to how you can make money online. As well as how you can reward yourself for the hard work.
Selling Ad Space: Google AdSense
Speaking of AdSense, I am a great fan of it. Even though there are many other examples like Google AdSense, it still stands as the best of them all in terms of making money online.
Concerning using AdSense on your blogs, you can earn very nice 6-figure amounts. Yet, on this blog, I didn’t introduce AdSense. This is because as you will read below, AdSense in some cases is not the best way to monetize your blog.
You can use this resourceful link to find out about making money with AdSense:
Easy And Reliable
AdSense is that which is easier to use as well as reliable. All you need is a blog with great content and more traffic.
When you add AdSense to your blog, if any of your ads are clicked, you get 68% of the money paid by the advertiser. The remaining 32% goes to Google for providing the service.
It is reliable with the sense that Google will pay you on time. Also, they have very strong security measures that will protect the system from fraud and spam.
You can choose what type of ads to show, how often to show them, how the ads will look, and many other things.
How Much Money You Can Make From AdSense
How much you can make from AdSense depends on these three things:
- Your organic traffic levels
- Placement of your ads
- The number of available advertisers for your niche.
Let us quickly examine these factors:
Clearly, the amount of traffic you have is directly proportional to the amount of money you can make from AdSense. This means that if you have a low number of traffic, you will earn low as well, from AdSense.
Also, you will need people to click your ads. This brings us to the need for the position of your ads on the page.
The best way through, is to test the various ad placements and check out which placements work better. You can take into consideration, ads that are above the fold. Since they also perform better.
Adsense Ads on CalorieSecrets
AdSense is an auction type system based mainly on keywords. When a user performs a search on Google and then visits a website with AdSense ads, it will try showing the user, ads that are relevant to the search query.
If there is a lot of competition i.e. many related ads, then this increases the money the advertiser will pay and the money you will earn.
Is Product or Blog Advertising through AdSense Possible?
The right answer is yes. It is very possible. You can make this through Google AdWords. AdWords is the system that is used to run ads that are displayed on Google search and AdSense sites.
You must note that you cannot use AdWords and drive PPC traffic to a page that has AdSense. This procedure was used by others to make more money. But it is not in use anymore.
What is the Best Time to Use AdSense?
- You can use AdSense on sites with a lot of topics (magazines, forums, etc)
- Use AdSense on sites with ‘Healthy Living Niche’. That is fitness blogs, etc.
- You can as well use AdSense on sites with lots of page views.
When not to use AdSense
- You shouldn’t use AdSense if you can make and sell your own products.
- You shouldn’t also use AdSense when you can make money through affiliate marketing.
Step 6: Make money by selling your own products or services
I stated earlier that I didn’t use AdSense on this blog. This is because the main purpose of this blog is to act as a channel to promote my SEO Courses and Digital marketing services not to make money from advertising.
You grab the whole show this way: When you sell ad space on your blog what happens is that you only get a portion of the money since 30% goes to the middle man (advertising company) and the advertiser is making a profit from your content and hard work.
In order to take care of this, you should rather consider creating and selling your own products or services.
This may sound ridiculous since it requires a lot of effort and hardwork to create products that other people will be willing to pay money for. Yet, this is the most recommended way to establish a long-lasting online business.
This is because, with your own products, you profit will expand. There, you will get to know that every more traffic you work for will make you more sales.
The easiest type of business you can set up online is by creating and selling ebooks or online courses.
Before you will think of starting that up, you should do some homework on this. The following questions will guide you through.
- What type of product to create?
- Who can potentially buy your product?
- How much to sell it for?
- How to test your product idea before actually making the product?
These are some of the questions you can use to guide you through your goal. To answer the first three of the questions, you will need to do some research on the products that are already available to the market and how much they are sold for.
But even if you have this data available, still the most important is to know if your idea for a product will sell before you actually make the product, and this is what I will explain below.
Step 7: Money Making through Affiliate Marketing
Talking of the last method of this blog, another way to make money from your blog is by selling the product of others (digital or physical) for a commission.
The is basically termed as affiliate marketing. Here is an overview of the process.
- You just have to find out which products you will like to promote.
- Once you get some, enroll in their affiliate marketing program.
- There, you will be presented with a unique link as well as banners to use for the process.
- Nex, add the links/banners in your blog
- Anyone who uses that link by way of clicking, gets directed to the site of the provider
- As soon as they make a purchase, you get your agreed commission.
Sounds great. Right?
Well, be notified that it doesn’t look like it sounds. You still need to find the right products to start with. Also, you need to test if your readers or community are willing to purchase any of the products you suggest.
What you should know before getting into affiliate marketing:
- Don’t promote products or services you don’t personally use. If you really want to gain your user’s trust, you have to know if that product really works out as it is said to be. And you can only find that out if you use the products yourself.
- Google is not a fan of websites that has “Making money through affiliation” goals. Your site should provide real value to the user, without being too promotional.
- Just don’t overdo it. There is no problem suggesting products to your readers. But there will be one if that is what you always do. Good affiliate marketers don’t promote products all the time. They first provide value to their readers and then suggest products.
- If you use WordPress, you can read this guide on how to go about your affiliate links (the white hat way).
You can also find out more by reading Pat Flynn’s blog. One of the most successful affiliate marketers on the internet today.
Blogging for money is not a theoretical concept. Thousands of bloggers are making money through their blogs either by selling ad space, their own products/services or through affiliate marketing.
All these successful bloggers have some things in common:
- They are having blogs with great content.
- They have managed to build communities around their blogs.
- They use more than one way to make money. They have their own products but they also make money from affiliate marketing and selling ad space.
- They have been blogging for years and it took them a number of years to get to the point of making a living from their blogs.