If you do a Google search for the keyword “how blogging makes money?
There are lots of guides with different views and teachings. But here’s what makes this one a bit different.
I started this blog you’re reading as a beginner with no experience in internet marketing or blogging.
I had no experience in WordPress, sales, SEO, or internet marketing when I started this blog. But as I kept pushing and practising daily, I began to experience growth and freedom with time.
I’m not here to tell you that this blog has generated over $$$$ within the past year, month, week, or so.
I’m here to show you how I have taken this blog from zero $ to make a consistent monthly income.
This blog has generated consistent monthly income from affiliate marketing and other blog income opportunities for the past year.
Here are some affiliate sales I have made in the past months.
Avangate Sales Notifications reports from Gmail.
ShareAsale Sales Report.
So, in this post, I will give you a step-by-step case study of how I went from nothing to a consistent monthly income online.
Let’s dive in…
Who is This Post for?
If you’re yet to make your first $500 from blogging, this post is for you. If you’re struggling to find the right monetization tactics for your blog type, this post is for you.
And for anyone looking to make money from affiliate marketing, you’re on the right page.
This is because, for the most part, affiliate marketing is the primary source of income from this blog.
So, if you want to learn how to make money from affiliate marketing, you’ll find many helpful tips here.
This post is for beginners marketers struggling to earn their first $100, $200, or $500 online.
Download The Short Report, where I show you how to take your Affiliate marketing game from zero to a consistent monthly income that replaces your 9-5 job in less than 30 days.
6 Ways Blogging Makes Money For Bloggers
Before I go into the specifics of how I make money blogging, I want to show you the general strategies or tactics by which bloggers make money.
I will also give you real-life examples of bloggers making money from each blog monetization tactic.
So you can rest assured that, in all honesty, blogging makes money if you work hard and long enough to see the reward.
For these reasons, here are six ways blogging makes money for bloggers.
1. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to earn passive income from your blog.
For many years in online marketing, affiliate marketing has become popular and a source of income for many online marketers.
Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income is an excellent example of how earning passive income from affiliate marketing can replace your 9 – 5-day job.
Since 2008, Pat Flynn has earned thousands of dollars monthly from selling other people’s products.
You will find a list of his income report posts here.
In January 2019, Pat Flynn made a 5-figure income from promoting someone else online course. In the process, he made the top three affiliates and generated a five-figure revenue.
And not just Pat Flynn alone making a full-time income from affiliate marketing. Anil Agarwal of BloggerPassion made an incredible $13,000 within one week of the Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deal.
If you’d love to read about how he did it, here is the detailed post where Anil reveals the strategies behind the success.
2. Online Courses
Creating courses around a topic is great if you have something of value other people might learn.
It could be a skill, self-development, business, health, life-changing program, etc.
Online courses can bring significant income if done right. Depending on your business model, it could generate a one-time income or recurring payment.
Though you don’t need much expertise to create courses around a topic, you must be one step ahead of your target audience to deliver value.
Yaro Starak is an excellent example of bloggers making money from creating online courses.
In January 2021, Yaro published 16 insights that helped him sell online courses from $7,000 to over $700,000.
Other marketers are making big money from selling courses online.
Jon Morrow of Smart Blogger makes over $1 million annually, creating and selling courses online. Jon develops courses on how to become a highly paid freelance writer.
You, too, can sell your knowledge or expertise to earn money online. However, your audience will need credibility and trust to believe in your products/services.
But this shouldn’t stop you from teaching others what you know to do better.
3. Selling ad Space
If you have a blog driving millions of visitors yearly, selling advertising space on your blog can make you lots of money.
Though I tried Google Adsense on this blog in the past, I quickly realized it doesn’t work for my type of blog.
Advertising won’t be a good fit for every type of blog and blogger.
As an estimate, you need roughly 20,000 daily visitors to make around $100,000 per year from the Google Adsense program.
Not many blogs can drive this traffic level in their career.
If you don’t like the idea of posting consistently and generating thousands of visitors monthly to earn from your blog, advertising may not work for you.
Running contextual advertising like Google Adsense can be a suitable monetization method for blogs in the entertainment niche, sports, food blog, fashion, news, etc.
You can apply for the Google Adsense program with a Gmail account and a blog.
This is one of the most popular ways to earn a living online.
If you have the skills or knowledge people require for the services, freelancing can earn you a living.
Though freelancing can be time-consuming and draining, you will make a very lucrative income if you’re one of the highly sought freelancers in your niche.
Many bloggers have taken to freelancing as the primary source of income and are living full-time on it.
One of them is Moss Clement of MossMedia.biz.
Moss is a highly sought-after B2B (Business-to-business) freelance writer. He has been doing this for over three years and makes an average of $4,000 monthly from freelance writing gigs.
This figure excludes SEO and social media projects for clients.
On a small scale, you can start your freelancing career with marketplaces such as Fiverr, Upwork, People Per Hour, etc Business people who need your services can easily find your listing gigs and hire you for the job.
5. Business Coach
Let’s clear something up here: coaching is not for everyone.
It would help if you had the expertise, credibility, track records, trust, results, and testimonies for people to believe in your advice.
These are not something you achieve overnight. You must have been in the game long enough to acquire these values.
Coaching can be a very lucrative business model if you have what it takes to lead others in the right direction.
Lilach Bullock is a business coach focusing on helping women achieve their online dreams. She exemplifies how offering your expertise and knowledge can pay off.
She has been doing this for years and makes a full-time income.
6. Selling Products and Services
This one is a huge business if you have what it takes to do it.
And not just what it takes but the desire to be a successful online entrepreneur.
Many bloggers have transitioned from just blog writers selling their products and services.
This could be a book publishing business selling digital products or services directly on their blog.
My friend Ryan has transitioned to a self-publishing Amazon eBooks author. He is the creator of the popular blog “Blogging from Paradise” and authorizes over 100 bit-size Amazon eBooks.
He has sold over 300 copies of eBooks on Amazon and is travelling the world around, living the dot com lifestyle.
Over the years, the blog grew big, and Brian saw an opportunity in the WordPress development product, so he started the StudioPress WordPress Themes brand.
You, too, can start selling products and services on your blog.
However, to make buying easy for customers, you will need payment processor features on your blog and a contact form like WPForms.
WPForms is the most used contact form and integrated payment processor form for most WordPress sites.
For more information on WPForms and how they can help your eCommerce sites, read my extensive WPForm review here.
Away from how bloggers get paid for blogging, let me show you a case study of how I make money from this blog.
How I Made Money from Blogging – Case Study
This is a short report on going from zero to making money online.
If you’re ready to learn from me, I’ll give you the exact step-by-step formula I use to turn affiliate marketing into a profitable business on this blog.
I have created a ten-part email series that walks you through the ropes of making money from affiliate marketing.
If you didn’t get the value after the ten-part email series I shared with you, unsubscribe from the list. And I will personally offer you an apology for wasting your time.
1. Find the Right Niche or Blog Topics
Initially, I used to blog more about search engine optimization and digital marketing news.
Nothing was wrong with my content except that I was competing against more advanced and experienced marketers. My competitors have 100 times more marketing budget and experience than I do.
Ranking near the top 20 of SERP for my target’s keywords was tough.
If I want to get noticed, I’d instead buy my way to get traffic to my content.
For six solid years, I fought to beat other websites in SERP. But when competing against giants like Neil Patel, Brian Dean, and Moz, you’re only fighting a lost battle.
After reading this post on Tom Dupuis’s website, I decided to try something different from what I’ve been doing.
I decided to try affiliate marketing in a different form and niche.
Enter Product and Services Reviews
Although I was writing a bit of it initially, review posts only take less than 5% of published content on the blog.
Instead of writing about SEO, website traffic, and digital marketing news, I tried product and service reviews.
But it doesn’t have to be a blatant product review, no. It has to be something I know, use, and have practical experience with.
And it has to be a niche with growing interest in relevant products and services. A niche where people are already spending money to buy these products and services.
This is because my passion or interest counts for nothing if people are not spending money to buy.
This is something you have to understand about internet marketing.
Your passion doesn’t guarantee profit or success. Neither is your expertise nor experience that automatically qualifies you as the go-to-marketer.
You have to research the market for demand and profitability. If there is a lot of spending and business in the niche, that’s a good sign.
I’m a BIG fan of keyword research for market evaluation.
So, for the most part, I use keyword research for every step of the process.
First, I created a list of products and services my audience will be interested in. Something that will help move their business forward.
Since most of my audience are WordPress users, developing a list of relevant products and services is not too difficult.
The results proved I didn’t choose the wrong blog topics, as seen in the image above.
Evaluate your blog niche and competitors and change if your actions do not yield the desired results.
2. Publish The Right Content
I learned from the transition that writing review content is quite different from other forms of content.
I still learn today.
If you want your review post to appear in SERP for the target’s keywords, you must be on top of your SEO game.
First, your review post must convince the user that you have real-life experience with the product. You have used it, tested it, and can vouch for the quality and benefits.
What most people who publish review posts do is blatantly copy what’s on the merchant’s website. Make a few edits, touch on the product’s features and prices, and then hit the publish button.
With such an approach, you won’t get the best out of affiliate marketing.
I understand it is nearly impossible to buy every product you want to review on your blog as a beginner.
This is how the process works.
If the product merchant offers a free trial, you should sign up for it and test drive the product during this period. Use the free trial period to learn about the product’s pros and cons—the benefits, details, and features.
Furthermore, take screenshots where it makes sense to explain things in more detail.
3. Drive The Right Traffic
Website traffic is unequal, so its value to your business won’t be the same.
For most affiliate marketing websites, SEO works better than paid media.
If your content drives most of its traffic from search engines like Google, you’ll make more money from your affiliate marketing campaign.
However, it would be best if you dived into paid search marketing as it helps bring exposure to your content. And drive relevant eyeballs toward your review posts.
If you blog about trending topics like fashion, recipes, news, sports, politics, etc., Facebook ads might be an excellent option to try.
But if your blog topics are on SEO, digital marketing, WordPress, plugins, or affiliate marketing, search traffic is your best bet.
This is because people start their online buying experience mostly with searches. And you want to be there when they begin this journey.
So, ensure you drive traffic to your blog content or topics.
4. Build Your Email List
I have read over a thousand times that money is on the list; I never experienced it until I started building one.
The amount of money you could make is proportional to your email list size. The size of your email list will determine the size of your income.
According to HubSpot marketing, email marketing ROI (return on investment) is $42 for every $1 spent. Your investment in email marketing will never be at a loss if you build a healthy list of subscribers.
If you want to keep making money from your blog on-demand, list building should be on the priority list. There are no two ways to do it or any shortcut.
Email marketing services providers like Getresponse provide the tools to build your email list quickly.
I use Getresponse for email marketing on this blog. It has been the email marketing of choice for many marketers for years.
Start your email list-building campaign with the Getresponse 30-day free trial offer here. So you can see if Getresponse will help your business move forward.
5. Monetize Your Content
I have tried several blog monetization tactics; nothing works better than affiliate marketing.
For a quick overview, I have tried contextual advertising such as Google Adsense, Infolinks, Adbrite, Bidvertiser, etc.
From experience, you will only make good money from any of these advertising options if you have thousands of page views monthly.
However, there are lots of options to try when it comes to blog monetization tactics. In my opinion, affiliate marketing is way better for beginners.
With little traffic, you can earn $500 and above monthly from selling other people’s products.
But running affiliate marketing campaigns on your blog isn’t enough. It would be best if you had a strategy to make it work.
People won’t buy from your recommendations if they do not trust your advice or content.
In my case, here are a couple of things I keep in mind when writing affiliate content review posts:
The content has to be original. It should be different from what others have written on the topic.
It has to be in-depth and provide all necessary details about the product or services. Also, it should be free from plagiarism. Don’t copy what’s on the merchant website and paste it into your content.
Google wants your review post to be in-depth and original.
I have touched on this briefly in this post; it’s important to discuss it again.
Practical experience with the product or services you want to review is crucial.
If you can’t access the product directly, there are many dedicated communities for anything you can think of.
For instance, here is a group of SEO Powersuite users on Facebook.
Assuming you want to review the SEO tool but never use it. You can be part of this group and collect real user experiences to include in your content.
This will give your content more substance, originality, and in-depth.
In their review posts, many marketers discuss product features, descriptions, pricing, etc.
These are just part of what the user wants to know and not what they look for in any review content.
Ask yourself this question:
Why do people buy luxury cars?
One of the primary benefits of driving a private car is to save time reaching your destination.
So, having a 504 Peugeot Saloon car is the same as having a Lamborghini or RollRoyce, right? They all serve the same purpose.
You’re mistaken…Do you know why?
Material, social, or ego benefits come with owning a Lamborghini, Rollce Roy, or Tesla that you will never have if you’re driving a 504 Peugeot 1968 Saloon Car.
If you still don’t get it, let me give you another example of the benefits vs. product features and details.
You may have the best SEO tool with lots of features and a great user interface as an SEO company. If all these features don’t help business owners achieve better rankings, increase sales, and generate more revenue, your product won’t sell.
This is because that’s what a business owner cares about. He doesn’t care about your product features, bells, and whistles.
There is no reason to buy the SEO software if the SEO tool can’t take his business from point A to B.
I hope you understand the differences between features and benefits now.
So when next you’re writing a review post, focus on the benefit the product brings to the end-user.
As you write your affiliate review post, include a call to action where necessary.
Insert your affiliate links as often as you want people to click through them. Don’t be shy not to include your affiliate links in your post.
I use different tactics to include my affiliate links in a post on this blog.
I use buttons, text links, notice boxes right after the introduction, content middle, content end, etc.
If you love writing, you’ll love blogging, and if freedom is what you’re fighting for, blogging is your one-way vehicle to your dreamland.
I always look for ways to include affiliate links in a post because you never know where the user might decide to click through with your affiliate links.
Summary – How Blogging Makes Money
Is it possible to make money blogging?
Yes, because I’m a living witness to how blogging can make you money. And not just me; thousands of bloggers have found life worth living by running an internet-based business.
You, too, can achieve financial freedom from blogging if you’re ready to run it like a business.
You can run your blogging task part-time while still working a day job. Make it a side hustle, and slowly grow it into a real business that takes care of itself.
Blogging is hard; I have to tell you this. If anyone tells you something else, it’s a lie.
You’ll have to put in a lot of effort when growing your blogging career to a point where it generates full-time income. It won’t be easy, but it’s not impossible, either.
You must believe and keep working on your dream until it becomes a reality.