Is blogging just a hobby? Think again - you can really make a lot of money. Here's how to get started, find yourself and make money with my blog.
Blogger's laptop and phone.
Let's face it: blogging isn't the easiest way to make money. But the beauty is that anyone can do it and it looks great on a resume.
You just need to have something interesting to say and enough patience and dedication to increase traffic and subscribers. But how do successful bloggers make money? We interviewed some of them to uncover their income-generating secrets.
Our guide will give you a concrete plan of action to start your blog and grow it from home into a profitable SME business.
What is this blog guide about?
How to start a blog
What to blog about
How to increase blog traffic
How to make money blogging
The biggest challenges of marketing
How to start a blog.
When creating a blog, you have two main options: you can use a free blogging platform or create your own website. We explain both to you and describe their advantages and disadvantages.
Free blogging platform.
Best Suited For: Freelance bloggers and those who don't want to monetize their blog.
Pros: Very easy to install and totally free.
Cons: Limitations on customization and uploading videos/images, you can't often place ads or use affiliate links, you can't create custom websites, and the platform reserves the right to delete my blog.
Many platforms allow you to create a blog for free and are very easy to use. If you're just looking to blog casually at first, this might be for you.
But free blog platforms can be very limited. You will have limited editing and your blog will have limited storage space, which can make it difficult to upload large videos and images.
Another downside is that with platform branding, your blog URL will look something like "www.yourblog.wordpress.com".
Also, most free blogging platforms do not allow you to post banner ads or links to your website, which are important sources of income for most bloggers.
But if you're not interested in those things, here's a quick rundown of the best free blog surveys out there.
The best blogs.
WordPress.com – This is a free and easy to use basic blog hosting service. Must have WordPress ads and branding unless paying a monthly fee. It is also not possible to make money from advertising unless you pay for Premium, Business or an online store. The customization and expansion options are also limited.
Blogger - Google Blogger's free Blink service is very easy to use. However, the editing and styling options are very limited, and there aren't many options if you want to add new features.
Medium – Medium focuses on writing rather than design. Used by many editors, writers, and professionals, it's a great way to share your work with a specific community. You can't place ads and it's difficult to create your own personal brand.
Build your site
Perfect for dedicated bloggers and those looking to monetize their blog.
Pros: Full design and customization controls, custom URLs, and the ability to use ads and affiliate links however you want.
Cons: You have to pay. First for the domain (URL) and then for the hosting, but we have some tips for cheap web hosting.
Unless you're very tech savvy, the idea of building your own website can seem pretty daunting. But in reality it is very easy to make and you can do it in just 20 minutes.
Red Student's founder, Owen, has written a simple step-by-step guide to show you how to get the site up and running.
With your own website, you can create a unique personal brand (with your own URL) and there is no risk of the platform taking down your blog - you fully own and control the website.
WordPress has an insane number of templates or “themes” to choose from – take your time and choose the one that fits your personality and blog theme.
Choose something clean and simple with room for large images and legible fonts (Comic Sans and Courier are not acceptable).
create your own website"
How to choose a blog topic.
This can be the easiest or the most difficult part of starting your blog.
The most important thing at this point is to choose a niche where you can call yourself an authority. The biggest mistake new bloggers make in such a crowded blogosphere is starting a blog without trying to do anything surprising or different.
For example, if you like fashion, instead of combining general media content, can you combine your love of clothes with a strong concern for the environment and blog about environmental information about other designers in the market?
Here are the best ways to find content for a new blog:
Check out other blogs - this should be your first visit. What has worked? And most importantly, what is missing? Look for oaths in the market.
Use Google - What are people searching for? Use Google's search suggestions and autocomplete to find out what people are looking for. If they are looking for it, it shows that there is a demand.
Search Forums for Frequently Asked Questions - When users can't find answers to their questions, they search forums. What do you ask? What do you need advice for? It shows what people are interested in and what information is missing.
Follow the trends of the time - Which topics are currently occupying the media? It's good to choose a material that will last, but if you can control development early on, you can quickly establish yourself as an expert before anyone else. A search for #Journal on Twitter reveals topics journalists cover.
Consider different types of content - Can you create tutorials/guides? Degree? Job interviews? Art? Maybe it's not what you write about that's different, but how you write.
Identify your interests and passions – While all of the above points are important, there's no point blogging about a topic that doesn't interest you. You get bored easily and people notice your lack of enthusiasm. Write about something that really means something to you.
Check out the long list of small businesses we're starting. Stimulate entrepreneurship and make money!
How to increase blog traffic.
After you've built your website, created blog content, and published your first posts, the big question is: where are all the readers?
You can't expect people to magically find your blog and start reading it. You must promote it!
Here are the best and easiest ways to get more readers for my blog:
Promote your blog on social media.
As with any business these days, if you don't have a social media account, you probably won't notice.
We recommend creating pages/accounts for your blog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tik Tok, Snapchat, and even LinkedIn (you're your own company, right?). Style these accounts in a similar color scheme/theme as your blog to keep your branding consistent and recognizable.
Use it to share new posts and tag other bloggers/influencers/businesses who can share the content and help it reach an even larger audience.
You can also participate in paid advertising to help my blog reach a larger audience or run a contest to get more traffic. Once you gain subscribers, engage them with regular posts (not just new blog posts).
Get in touch with other bloggers
Get to know other bloggers about similar things. Even if you're technically a competitor, you'll probably be pleasantly surprised at how supportive the blogging community can be.
Many bloggers even have a links page on their website, which they use to connect with a group of friends in the community in exchange for a link to your blog. This will help you a lot with Search Engine Optimization (search engine optimization - how likely is it that my blog will appear in Google search).
If you collaborate with other bloggers and share their content, chances are they'll reciprocate. We can even work together!
Respond to your blog's messages.
If something that concerns you is not happening in the news, please contact us. This is what we call “knowledge management” and it can give you great visibility.
For example, if you blog about cheap college tuition, look for our latest college tuition survey. College students may spend $116 a month on groceries, but you can tell them how to spend less (by eating better!).
You can comment on social media using relevant hashtags, participate in discussions, and even reach out to editors to let them know you're ready to comment.
If you don't know yourself, editors can also come to you.
Create help content
Viral content creation helps you open up new markets and expand your learning style.
It might be easier said than done, but the key to creating authoritative content is to cover controversial or highly controversial topics related to your blog's niche. As you can imagine, these are often news searches, as mentioned above.
Because this is a niche market, be passionate, confident, and knowledgeable so you can post your opinions that people will want to read, share, and discuss.
How to make money with bloggers.
Once your blog is up and running, you can (finally!) look for ways to make money.
Here are the best and easiest ways to make money as a blogger:
Use affiliate marketing on my blog.
Affiliate marketing works by adding affiliate link tracking to your blog's text. Every time a reader clicks through to recommend a site and makes a purchase, you can earn a small commission.
The link takes readers to the brand's website and the money they make is because you sent some of your amazing readers to their website.
Almost all online shopping sites have some form of affiliate programs, like Amazon, ASOS and Apple.
Sign in to the collaboration window. This is a huge affiliate network where you can promote thousands of well-known brands and services from around the world.
A frugal blogger said:
We primarily use affiliate marketing as our main source of income, although Google AdSense is also available for a few extra dollars a month.
Affiliate marketing is a natural fit for many bloggers. As the author suggests:
As a blogger, you are always recommending products and services to readers. Many companies offer affiliate programs, so finding the right program to join and earn commissions is very easy.
The most important thing is to be honest and sincere when it comes to affiliate marketing. Write reviews and articles with your honest opinion and encourage your readers to only buy something if you think it's a good product or service for them.
Add advertising banners to the website.
For a visual type of advertising, sell banner ads on blogs to brands that engage with readers.
You can place ads anywhere, but you can usually find them at the top of the back or in the sidebar.
You can make money in two ways. CPC (cost per click) means you get paid a certain amount for each reader who clicks on an ad, while CPM (cost per thousand) means you accept a certain payment for every 1000 "impressions" on the ad.
With the growth of adblock plugins, the CPC and CPM can be low, but it depends on the industry and there's no harm in trying.
A quick start is to create a Google AdSense account.
Write ads and sponsored content.
According to the bloggers we spoke to, one of the best ways to make money blogging is by hosting sponsored content (or ads). This is basically an advertisement in the form of a paid article or blog post.
For example, if Adidas is launching a new swimwear line and you blog about women's clothing, they may offer you a fee to write an article about their line. You can also add affiliate links above.
This monetization method usually works best when you have a large niche group. As you expand your audience publicly, brands will often reach out to you to discuss sponsored posts.
Beauty, fashion, lifestyle and travel blogger says:
The only option I've had is to get sponsored content through a PR company, either directly or through apps like advertising agency Instagram.
Billing for sponsored placements on social media.
A strong social media presence makes you very attractive to brands. Some monetize their entire blog with sponsored social media posts. Mail/Herpes is downloadable and the cost can be surprisingly high.
First of all, you have to work hard to get followers. Brands see "social proof" (or the number of people who follow you on social media) as proof that your readers also like what you post about them.
Write guest blog posts for the media.
Sometimes affiliates (or even brands with their own blogs) will contact you if you are an expert on a certain topic and ask them to see a small feature on your site.
For example, if you're particularly good at cooking on a budget, the magazine might get in touch with you and ask me to contribute cheap recipes to your cooking magazine.
You can also submit ideas for publication. When editors don't know who you are, a quick email introduction is a great way to get your blog name out there.
Create your own blog in collaboration with the office.
Believe it or not, blogging has become so popular in the advertising world that today there are agencies dedicated solely to blogger marketing for big brands.
Working with an agency can be very profitable and give you peace of mind, but you need a pretty decent following to make any money.
Commissions are also incredibly high, meaning the biggest brands can afford to work with you and smaller independent businesses are put on hold.
Depending on the type of blog activity you are aiming for, this may work for you. An example from the Ethical Models blog: Agency fees can put you off working with small independent designers that you really want to promote.
Sell digital products on my blog.
If you can offer expertise or advice, another option is to charge for access to e-books, video tutorials, courses or workshops.
For this opportunity to work, you must be able to demonstrate that you are exceptionally good at what you do or that your content has proven incredibly valuable. It is not easy.
Convincing online communities to pay can be quite difficult because people believe that everything on the internet should be free. But is it worth trying?
Sell the news section of your blog.
They can also charge a fee to promote or feature the brand in a weekly/monthly magazine (if you have one!). It takes very little time and you get a good amount of it.
However, you need to build an email list big enough for brands to consider.
Get the employer's attention as a blogger.
Using your blog to promote your business or even job hunting is another (albeit indirect) way to make more money from my blog.
If you're one of the many college students selling content online, your blog is the perfect platform to offer advertising (but don't overdo it or you'll alienate readers).
You can also use your blog as a kind of online profile. This is a place where you can build credibility, show off your skills and hopefully get a good job.
Think of it this way: your blog is like your own small business. By showing potential employers that you can do this successfully, you show that you have an entrepreneurial spirit and know how to use it successfully.
Check out these great ways to make money online for more ideas on how to leverage your website.
Biggest blog revenue challenges.
Nothing is worthwhile without hard work and challenges.
Don't kid yourself that it takes time to make money from blogging. Many bloggers make money by monetizing their blog every month after working on their blog for a while.
Again, to make consistent income from a blog, you need to have multiple income streams from different sources. Monetizing a blog takes time and depends on traffic. The more readers you have, the more attractive you are to advertisers.
Many bloggers decide to make money early in their blogging journey. Blogger Urszula Markowska explained:
I started blogging in high school. I decided to monetize my blog because I spent a lot of time and effort creating posts, paying for photography, and also wanted to become a full-time blogger. I love blogging and would follow his passion into a full blogging career; it was a pleasure.
Another big challenge for bloggers is competition. Source, a lifestyle guide blogger, points out:
With so many bloggers in the same house as me, competing for opportunities is challenging. There are many jobs for bloggers.
The blog market is full of many potential bloggers struggling to get noticed. But if done with care and consistency, it is possible.
Blogging is definitely challenging because it takes a lot of dedication and persistence to earn it. My only regret is that I didn't start sooner.
I managed to make my first $50 in my first month of monetization and this month I've made over £200. Businesses are starting to contact me about sponsored posts, so hopefully your monthly income will keep growing!
Can you really make money blogging?
As we have seen, the answer is yes! However, how much money you can make from blogging varies. This is the nature of blog monetization initially, but over time, bloggers can only do well.
Monetizing a blog takes time and depends on traffic. The more readers you have, the more attractive you are to advertisers.
If you want to make a decent income from blogging, you need to consider multiple income streams from different sources and in different ways.
Check out this very important tax information - it will come in handy when you start making money from blogging.