10 Strategies for Monetizing Your Blog
People start blogs for many different reasons. It may be to get something off your chest, to wax lyrical about a subject or subjects close to your heart, to reach out and find like-minded individuals, to expose your latent copywriting skills to a broader audience, or for any number of other reasons.
You may not have started a blog to generate income, whether it be a primary income or a supplementary one, however it is not a crime to make money from the fruits of your labors. And assuming that your blog has generated a dedicated following and has a steady flow of traffic, there is no reason why you cannot monetize your blog and generate a little or maybe a lot of extra cash. After all, in these tough economic times, every extra penny comes in handy.
There are numerous ways to monetize your blog, many of which revolve around advertising targeted at your dedicated followers. Your followers usually exhibit a common trait or traits that can be targeted by advertisers with a product or poroducts that will potentially appeal to their tastes.
Following is a list of ten monetizing strategies, listed in no particular order:
1. Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)
Pay Per Click or PPC advertising, is an easy, simple and most popular way to monetize your blog. Google AdSense and other utilizing tools are the 1000 pound gorilla in this space. Also, other competing programs, contextual advertisements whether images or texts, are placed on your blog according to your blog content. Every time a visitor clicks on one of those ads you make a profit. Consequently, more traffic, more probability of you making money with this method.
Optimizing your site via the use of appropriate and high paying keywords ensures maximum revenue generation from PPCs.
2. Cost Per Thousand (CPM) Advertising
A good money spinner for blogs with heavy traffic and lots of page views, CPM ads pay per thousand impressions. An impression is literally just that, the appearance of an ad on your blog. The viewer need not click on the ad, consequently the rate is so low (it may be as low as $0.10/ thousand clicks).
3. CPA (Cost Per Action) / Affiliate Advertising
In contrast to CPM ads, CPA ads are the highest paying ads. That is because viewers must do more than just click on them, they actually have to perform an action such as make a purchase or provide contact information. The success of this type of advertising depends on the relevance of the ad to your visitors which is ultimately determined by your content.
4. In-text Advertising
In-text ads work whereby text in your content is underlined which link to advertisements. Some of these ads even pop up when you hover over the underlined word. This annoys some viewers but also saves valuable screen real estate.
If you use your blog as a gateway and premise for selling something, then your blog has the potential to be the best eCommerce site possible as your credibility is one of the best customer reviews possible. Whether you are acting as an agent for another product or selling a unique product of your own, selling products is one of the most popular methods of monetizing any site.
You must ensure though that you have the whole supply chain worked out, from billing to deliveries.
Subscriptions and memberships are the revenue sources that keep on giving. Once you have established your blog and have a dedicated following you can keep some content free and offer premium content for a fee.
Your knowledge is a product that costs you nothing to replicate other than your time, so the margins are excellent, often more than with a tangible product. Similarly, delivery is the cost of an email.
7. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing involves you recommending products on your blog that will appeal to your readership and receive a commission for any sales referred from your website. Affiliate marketing is a form of soft advertising whereby a reader who clicks a text ad or banner on your site and consummates a purchase earns you a commission. Product reviews are a more powerful and less subtle form of affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is best suited for sites without an enormous amount of traffic that service a niche market.
8. Sponsored Posts/Articles
Best implemented with established and popular blogs that specialize in a niche, sponsored posts involve you being paid to write about a specific product, company etc. according to a pre-defined format and post it on your blog. You must ensure though that the post is relevant to your readership or risk disenfranchising them.
9. Review Books
If you are a prolific book reader, you can become an Amazon associate and write book reviews for Amazon. When your readers click on the link to the book review you earn money. This method can also work as a marketing tool for your blog.
Use your blog as a window to the real world by leveraging the popularity of your blog to get yourself noticed and receive fees for the services or consulting that you can provide. A blog is an excellent way for you to get yourself known.