How to make money blogging: Top 5 techniques for monetizing your blog

21st Jul 2015
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Blogging is an excellent way of sharing your views and passion about any topic. Incidentally, it is also a wonderful means of making money online. A common misconception is that bloggers in India cannot make substantial income via blogging alone. However this is not the case. There are many leading Indian bloggers who are making lakhs of rupees from blogging. So if you have a blog and have not monetized it yet, now is the time to act!

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Here’s a list of five evergreen tactics that you can use on your blog to monetize it.

  1. Advertising Networks

This is the simplest method of monetization; making it a good stepping stone for those looking to monetize their blog for the first time. Therefore, it also is most commonly used blog monetization method. It is extensively used across the world and is quite popular in India, too.

How this works: You display ads on your blog - when your viewers click on these ads, you earn a commission from the advertiser.

How to implement this on your Blog:

  1. Choose the Ad network you want to work with. AdSense (owned by Google) is by far the favorite network amongst bloggers as well as advertisers. There are other options like BidVertiser, Infolinks,
  2. Apply to become a publisher on the Ad network of your choice. Application will require your payment details (details of the account where you would like to receive the commission payout) amongst other things, so keep this information handy.
  3. Once your application is accepted, the Ad network will send you a confirmatory mail regarding the same.
  4. Once confirmed you will be provided with Ad codes that you need to place on your blog - at the locations where you want to display the E.g. you may want to display ads between text sections or in the sidebar, etc.
  5. Once you have placed the codes correctly, you are good to go. Your Ad network will start displaying ads at your specified location within a couple of hours.
  6. Your job now is complete. Now it is up to your readers to view/click on the ads and earn you some moolah through your blog.

How much can you earn: The earning per click ranges from $0.01 to $50. How much the ads on your blog will pay depends on your blog topic, since ads displayed are related to that topic. Also, the amount you earn will depend on the number of viewers who click on your ads.

Tip to earn more: Optimize your ad placement - by checking which location and type of ad gets the most clicks. Image ads work best for some blogs, while others earn more from text ads. So keep adjusting things until you achieve maximum returns.

  1. Affiliate marketing

This method can earn you a sizable income from your blog. Here you are looking to earn by pitching related products or services to your readers. You need to be smart in choosing the product or service you want to promote. It requires researching and analyzing your niche to understand what your readers are looking to buy. When implementing this method on your blog make sure not to overdo the promotion. Your readers come to your blog to read the post and share your blogging journey. Do not alienate them by promoting stuff all the time.

How this works: You place ads or links of your chosen affiliate product/service on your blog. When a reader clicks on these links and makes a purchase, you get paid a commission from the product/service provider.

How to implement this on your Blog:

  1. Choose the product/service you would like to become an affiliate Clickbank, OMG India, Trootrac media are some popular affiliate networks. You can also choose to directly join an affiliate program offered by websites like Flipkart, Amazon, etc.
  2. Apply for becoming an affiliate on your chosen website. Here amongst other details, you might be asked about the marketing/promotion strategies you use for your blog.
  3. Most websites will review your application and approve or disapprove it within 24-72 hou
  4. Once your application is approved, you will be able to log into your affiliate account and access different links/ads which you can place on your blog.
  5. Add the relevant link/ad in your blog and check if it is working right.
  6. You are all set to earn money from affiliate Now when a reader clicks on the link/ad and buys the product/service you will earn a commission.

How much can you earn: The commission earned per sale varies greatly. It depends on the website, as well as the product. You can earn commissions ranging anywhere from 2.5 per cent to 50 per cent of the sale value. Also, the earning will depend on the product bought by the buyer. E.g. you place affiliate ads of Flipkart on your blog - if a reader purchases clothes you earn a higher commission percentage as opposed to a reader who purchases a mobile phone.

Tip to earn more: Promote products/services that are closely related to your niche and your readers, so that you can have a higher conversion rate and be assured of making sales. While popular products are easy to sell they offer less commission, so always keep a lookout for a relatively lesser known but a potentially good product which can earn you higher commission.

  1. Selling your own product

There is no better way to have supreme control over your blog monetization than selling your product. This is by far the most stable method of earning from your blog, since you have full control over the method. Right from designing the product, to pricing and marketing it, you are the boss of it all - hence the more effort you put in the more money you can make.

How this works: You create a product/service based on your expertise and sell it to readers through your blog.

How to implement this on your Blog:

  1. Create a product/service with your own hands or you can get someone to create it for you. You can create physical products like books, cookies, DIY kits, Or, you can create digital products like eBooks, video courses, etc.
  2. Establish a selling price for your creation. Determine the method of delivering your product/service. Will you send it via courier/mail or does it need to be collected personally? Also, decide on the method of payment -via PayPal or bank transfer, in cash or by cheque - you need to decide on a method that is convenient for both you and your buyers.
  3. Create a special landing page on your blog explaining all about this creation of yours. Point out its salient points, its benefits and utility, and include a buy button on this page.
  4. Promote your product/service to your readers and beyond. You can do this via email marketing, social media promotion, ‘AdWords’, and the like.
  5. Make sales and earn money from your creation.

How much can you earn: Sky is the limit. Since everything from pricing to costing is in your hands, your earning potential is up to you. The better your product the more it will sell, and the more you can earn.

Tip to earn more: Research to understand what product your readers would like to buy and only then begin designing of your product/service. If you make something that the readers want, it will sell itself, like hot cakes.

  1. Freelance via your blog

If you have been blogging about a topic for a while, you sure do have certain level of knowledge, skills and expertise on it. Freelancing is a way of earning money through your skills and expertise. If you have specific marketable skills like designing or baking then you can earn money by advertising these skills on your blog, and taking up jobs that utilize these skills. Even if you do not have specific skills you can always guide other newbie bloggers in your niche and charge them for the guidance. You will be amazed at the number of people willing to pay you money for your advice - which you might have been giving out for free until now!

How this works: You provide your skills/expertise as a consultant to those who require it and pay for it. Alternatively you might choose to take up projects which require execution and get paid for the same.

How to implement this on your Blog:

  1. Create a brief of what services you want to offer as a Freelancer.
  2. Create a dedicated landing page on your blog, listing your services. Also include on this page, a statement on why somebody should hire you, what benefits do you offer over others, and most importantly, your pricing Include information about how to contact/hire you.
  3. Inform your readers about the services you are offering and encourage them to avail of these, and also request them to mention it to their family and Your readers will be more receptive to ask for your services as they are aware of your expertise through the regular reading of your blog posts.
  4. Promote your services via other channels, too, like advertising, social media, The more you promote, the more people will become aware of your services; and more offers will come your way.
  5. Once you receive a project ensure that you complete it in a professional manner. Get paid and earn money from your blog.

How much can you earn: Your earning will depend on your knowledge level and also on how popular your service offering is. You decide on the price - so the earning potential is unlimited. If you are an expert in your niche then your earnings can skyrocket easily; since you can take on more complex projects that pay more.

Tip to earn more: Do not short sell yourself. If you cannot decide on a pricing structure, conduct a survey amongst readers about how much they would be willing to pay for a particular service. Most bloggers are guilty of short selling themselves, and thus not able to sufficiently augment their own income.

  1. Placing direct ads on your blog

This is another excellent blog monetization method which is used by many bloggers. However this method works better for some niches as opposed to others. On the surface this method is similar to the Ad networks one, i.e. you place ads on your blog and earn money from it. However, there is a huge difference, in its implementation. While with Ad networks you have no control over the ad displayed and the earnings you receive, here you have full control. You get to choose which ad will be displayed on your blog and you also set the price for the ads. In this method advertisers get in touch with you directly to place ads on your blog, thus eliminating the middleman (Ad network) and increasing your earning potential.

How this works: You place ads on your blog - when readers click on these you get paid a commission or you can choose to charge a flat fee to the advertisers on a monthly/weekly basis.

How to implement this on your Blog:

  1. Determine the locations on your blog where you would like to place the ads (ad spots). You can place ads in the footer, header, sidebar, within the content,
  • Create an ‘Advertise with us’ page on your blog. On this page provide information that will help potential advertisers decide if your blog is a right fit for them. Include a brief about your blog audience, what topics you write on, and most importantly, include pricing information about your ad spots. It’s your blog, so you set the prices. Remember you can set different prices for different ad spots. You might choose to charge more for a header banner and less for an in-context text Also, add information about how to contact you for placing an
  1. Apply to join a monetization network where you can add your blog, your ad spot and pricing details. This will expose your blog to more advertisers via the network. BuySell Ads is one of the most popular monetization networks.
  2. Place boxes in your blog on the ad spots with ‘advertise here’ This will attract attention of potential advertisers who visit your blog.
  3. Some advertisers might want to negotiate prices with you - be open to such deal Once you have agreed on a price with the advertiser, make their ads live and see the money roll in.

How much can you earn: Since you decide the rate for your ad spots, your earning potential is in your hands. However, in general, the larger the audience you have the more you can earn, since advertisers are willing to pay higher prices for exposure to more potential buyers.

Tip to earn more: Do not put ‘Advertise Here’ text for all your ad spots. Place dummy ads in some of the prominent ad spots. This creates a psychological advantage for you when a potential advertiser views your blog. On seeing the dummy ad, advertisers feel that you already have clients, and so your blog is worth investing in. Additionally, it creates a feeling of scarcity - that your ad spots might soon fill up and they might miss out on advertising with you. Both of these tactics motivate potential advertisers to do business with you.

This sums up the top 5 most popular methods of monetizing your blog. Making money from your blog is neither rocket science nor is it child’s play. You need to be smart about the products you choose to promote, or design. You need to put in some real hard work to create loyal readers of your blog, who will eventually help you earn money from your blog. And, most of all, you need to work hard on promoting and exposing your blog to the maximum number of potential readers.

Most bloggers write excellent articles but forget to promote it. A blog without promotion is like a secret diary. Only the blogger knows about it. Promotion helps the blog reach out to potential readers and make it popular amongst the masses. So promote your blog, apply any one or all of these monetization methods, and earn money from your blog.

About the author:

Shashank Gupta runs his digital marketing agency based in India. He has recently launched his blog about ‘How to make money online.’ You can find him on Twitter @Shashankscg

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