Whenever I bring up my blog, my friends or family look at me with a blank face like, “OK whatever gives you pleasure”, kind of way. When, in the second breath I mention that my blog is my source of income they immediately become curious. Right away they too want to jump on the bandwagon and want to know what and how I do it. But is blogging for money something for you? Something you are prepared to invest your time in?
Essentially, I explain to my friends that I write about topics which other people are interested in and that I make money by advertising and selling products on my blog.
For the people who are new to blogging it seems like a very simple idea. You blog, people come to your blog, they click on the advertisements, buy the products and viola!, you make money.
But for those of us who have been blogging for a while the truth is quite different. Although the concept seems fairly easy, the process is much harder than it seems.
Without a doubt blogging is simple. Anyone can blog, old and young, skilled and unskilled. Blogging for profit, on the other hand is not simple. Most people have no clue how to do it. But if you are successful you can definitely get a steady and good income from your blog. There is a multitude of bloggers that make six figure incomes from their blogs alone!
If you want to begin blogging and particularly blogging for money you need to bear couple of things in mind before you get wholly involved.
Let’s find out why blogging for money is harder than it sounds
1. You are getting into a whole way new life
If you are a novice, before you get all gung-ho and goo goo eyed at this seemingly simple way to make money, you first need to recognize what you are getting into. To be honest, you are getting into a whole new way of life.
When you decide to get into blogging to make money with your blog, you need to make a long term commitment. You must begin to think of it as a business. Your business.
Most blogs fail after a few months. It is because, the traffic is lacking and the blog does not make any money. Well, like in any other business you would establish online or offline, the first year is usually accepted as a loss. So it is with blogging. Very few people make any money with their blogs in the first year.
Unless you have the patience and the endurance to stick with it for at least a year, you may as well not start at all. You will save yourself a lot of aggravation and disappointments.
If you are willing to consider blogging as a start up business and you are ready to stick with it, come hell or high water, you have a good chance to succeed!
2. You have to develop new skills
Blogging for money is not just about writing blog posts and then slapping some advertisements on your blog. To make a blog profitable takes some skills and a lot of work.
- You have to write quality and fresh, on topic content articles that are of interest to your readers
- You have to ensure that you have traffic flowing to your blog
- You have to have a pretty attractive/efficient blog look
- You have know how to place the advertisements on your blog
- You have to know which products to advertise
In other words it takes skill and patience to develop a profit generating blog and as a novice you need to master those skills.
Pic a Topic
To start with, pick a niche that you enjoy and stick with a niche blog. Initially blog exclusively on topic. You may want to popover here.. to learn about niche selection.
Initially and typically, multi-topic blogs have a greater difficulty to develop a readership. Now don’t take me wrong, I love multi-topic, authority blogs and they are awesome once you have the readership. But they are difficult to get off the ground. As your blog gets more visitors, you may start to branch into wider topics.
Don’t start more than one blogs
Because starting a blog is really simple, having the WordPress platform at our disposal, do yourself a favor and don’t start more than one blog to begin with. Stick to only one blog no matter how tempting having multiple blogs sounds to you.
You need to be really devoted to your blog and if you split your efforts between multiple blogs chances are quite high that neither one will succeed but rather all will fail.
I am not saying that branching to several blogs has no merit. It does and it can become very powerful and very lucrative. But as a new blogger you will be too busy with that one blog, trying to make it successful. So my advice to you is to put all your efforts into one blog. And work hard at it.
Write… Write… Write…
In research there is a saying: “Publish or Perish“. The same applies to blogging for money. You have to write articles for your blog like there is no tomorrow. Just kidding! Seriously, you have to write good quality articles often and consistently. Ideally you would write one article per day at the beginning. If you cannot do that, write at least 3 article per week. Some “gurus” may tell you, you need to write several articles per day. Don’t! It is not necessary and if you do, you will burn out.
Many people publish a lot of articles at the beginning and as they get busy with other things, they stop blogging consistently. This, of course, leads to failure. Whether you blog once per week, every day, every other day, on specific days, make sure that you stick to the schedule. Your readers expect that from you and the search engines also like to see that. Consistency is the key to success! Never forget that.
I am going to share a secret with you. You will find lying “gurus” who will try to sell you courses that will teach you how to write an article in 7 or 10 minutes. That’s bull. Don’t let them take your hard earned money!!
One thing I’d like to mention is that initially you may find that it takes you a long time to write an article. Stick with it, nonetheless. As the time will go by, you will find yourself more efficient and you will find it easier to write and find material or references for your articles.
Do some research about trending topics, frequently sought answers in search engines and questions asked on the forums. If you stick to these topics, plus add in some of your own thoughts on the subjects, you blog will be interesting and worthy of visiting.
Drive traffic to your blog
Driving traffic to your blog is the key to success. It is absolutely necessary when you are blogging for money. It is pretty simple. No traffic – no money! To drive traffic to your new blog takes a skill you’ll need to develop. I’ll not discuss the techniques here because it is a complex topic. Please read the article I wrote about getting traffic to your blog here…
Advertising and selling products
As soon as you have a blog, you are likely to be tempted to place advertisements on your blog. Some bloggers will advise you to not place any ads on your blog until your blog has “matured” somewhat. As far as I see it, it does not matter. If you don’t have traffic no one will see those ads. They do no harm.
What you need to consider, though, is not to place any paid advertisements such as Adsense on your blog unless you have steady traffic coming to your blog. Paid advertisers do not like having ads on sites that don’t have traffic and they may cancel your account. So wait until you have some consistent traffic before you place paid ads on your blog.
As well, when placing ads on your site, don’t overdo it otherwise people will find your blog spammy and will not trust you.
With respect to the products you are advertising on your site, if they are not yours, make sure you test them out and only offer the ones that will be of help to your visitors. Don’t just promote for the sakes of promotion, because that is a sure way to lose your following, hence your income.
When people understand that you only promote tested products, or products that you use, they will trust you and they will buy the recommended products from you.
Finally, once you go through the hurdles of establishing a blog, enjoy yourself and enjoy your blog. This is the key to successful blogging. If you consider blogging a chore, this feeling will permeate your blog and your readers will sense it. If you feel you cannot have fun with it, give it up before you invest too much time into it. I am not kidding you when I say that when your blog becomes a chore, failure is inevitable.. If that happens, find an other online venue to make money with.
If you love your blog, on the other hand, it will show through your writing, your blog appearance and just as a general nice blog karma. In time you will succeed.
Lastly, when you are blogging for money and you want your readers buy products from your blog, you have a great responsibility to your readers. They must trust and like you. The only way to develop this relationship with the visitors to your site, is not only to provide a great content, but to be honest, respectful and interactive with them. Always answer their comments and their email if they choose to contact you. This way people will realize that behind the blog is a real person who cares about the readers of the blog and does not only consider them cash cows.
Blogging for money is not easy but selling products from your blog is not rocket science either. If you go about it the right way, you will generate income with your blog for sure.
So right now, go out there and give all you can give to blogging and your success. And please share thoughts in the comments below.