Can you make money blogging? The short answer: Yes!
It may not be the quickest way to earn money. There’s no magic red button that makes it rain cash (it’d be cool though, right?)
But, with a smart approach, persistence and a little “elbow grease”, it can be done.
Here’s the big question:
Where the heck should you start?
In this post, you’ll find a complete beginner’s guide to starting a blog and making it profitable.
Let’s dive straight in:
- Laying the foundation to ensure your blog flourishes
- What’s a target audience and why you need one to earn money
- The most popular ways to make money blogging
- Getting started
- Start and grow an email list to maximize your income
- Concentrate on content marketing to earn more revenue
- Establish yourself in the online world
- Grow your blog into a money-making machine
- FAQ section
- Wrapping it up
Laying the foundation to ensure your blog flourishes
Like anything you want to succeed in – it’s imperative to make a solid plan of action and fully comprehend your purpose and mission for your blog.
If you attempt to go shooting in the dark with a new blog, chances are, you won’t end up in that percentage of bloggers who do “make it”.
You need to set out knowing your purpose, your mission, and why you want to start this journey in the first place.
One of the best ways to ensure your blog flourishes, is to set attainable goals for yourself.
What kinds of goals should you set?
- How much money do you want to earn in a month? 3 months? A year from now?
- How many pageviews do you want to see in 1 month? 3 months? A year?
- What strategies will you focus on when it comes to monetization of your blog?
- What strategies will you focus on to gain traction on your blog, and grow your blog’s traffic?
These are just examples of goals you may want to set; everyone’s goals will vary.
However, it is crucial that you lay out your goal in a specific way, to ensure you exceed them.
I’m sure you’ve heard of “SMART” goals somewhere along the line.
“SMART” goals are:
- S – Specific
- M – Measurable
- A – Attainable
- R – Relevant
- T – Time-Bound
These can be applied to any area of your life or business. And they’re extremely handy when it comes to setting any type of goal related to your blog.
You’ll want to break down your goals into smaller bite-sized bits, so it doesn’t feel like a daunting task to complete each goal.
Then once you complete each item on the written list, mark it off as complete. Which will give you a sense of accomplishment, and make you want to keep going.
The purpose and mission of your blog will prove invaluable later on, and you’ll be glad you took the time to figure it all out beforehand.
What’s a target audience and why you need one to earn money
Discovering your target audience, and moulding everything in your business to fit your target audience is one of the most fundamental aspects to making money with your blog.
Without a target audience, you don’t stand a chance of creating a blog that flourishes and reaches new levels.
Everything else should be secondary, and will actually stem off of your blog – as you’ll see.
What is a target audience?
Your target audience is a specific group of people who will come to your blog, time and time again, to read and devour your blog posts.
They’re the people who will happily sign up for your email list, and scoop up your offerings on the first day.
They’ll become your raving fans.
Unlike a hobby blog, where you can write about what you had for breakfast, and other personal topics; a profitable blog needs to be geared to a certain audience in order to be successful.
It needs to provide value to your target audience to keep them engaged and excited about your brand.
Every corner of your blog, every piece of content you write, and every post on social media should all be geared to please, inform, or entertain your target audience.
Why is a target audience so important to earn money?
You want your content to get shared over and over, to bring in massive pageviews, and keep the audience coming back for more.
In order to create that type of quality content, you need to know exactly who you’re writing for.
If you don’t have a specific group of people in mind – it’s impossible to craft content that’s relevant and useful.
Content that’s relevant, useful, and informative to your target audience will always bring in loads of traffic, conversions, and eventually money.
Most people are not going to care about your the topics that interest you. They come to the internet for a reason. And if you don’t have that specific content they’re searching for, you can bet a competitor or someone else in your niche will.
Then when it’s time to craft opt-in freebies and paid products, you’ll know who to create them for.
It’ll be quite a daunting task to grow your email list without an incentive (an opt-in freebie or lead magnet). But in order to create an excellent freebie, you absolutely must know who you’re creating it for.
See the pattern here?
If you’ve started a new blog and nobody is signing up for your awesome new freebie you spent days creating – it’s probably because that particular freebie is not meant for the people reading your blog.
The same goes for paid products.
You can see how this would impact your conversions and sales.
Defining your audience is of the utmost importance if you hope to be a successful blogger. You won’t gain traction without honing in on your own specific group of people.
The good news is every single one of us has our own “tribe” of people. Even bloggers who produce content about similar topics will have varying audiences.
Here’s an image Coschedule put together to summarize the vital importance of a target audience:
So now you’re convinced you need a target audience before you go ahead and start your money-making blog.
But how in the world do you go about finding these people?
How do you find your target audience?
- Find like-minded people on social media and follow them.
- Engage in the comment section of other blogs that are similar to the type of blog you envision yourself creating.
- Be active in Facebook Groups.
- Conduct market research online with people who you think fit the bill.
Just keep in mind – you don’t want to appeal to everybody.
You’ll find in time that you’re not everybody’s cup of tea. And that’s alright.
The right people for you, your brand, and your specific business, are the only people you need to be concerned about.
The most popular ways to make money blogging
The marvelous thing about having a blog is you can earn money from a slew of different income streams.
You’re never limited to using only one monetization strategy. In fact, you could focus on multiple income streams.
However, the most effective way to make money blogging is to choose a few different monetization strategies, and put everything you have into making those few work. Opposed to going after every type you can possibly think of.
Another thing is finding what works well for your blog. Do your research to decide what types of income streams tend to do best for your particular niche.
What works well for one blog won’t necessarily work for another blog. Making it imperative to find the right monetization tactics for your blog.
Let’s jump into the most popular ways to make money blogging:
1. Affiliate marketing
You remember those bloggers we mentioned earlier that are pulling in 6-figures per month?
Well, most of them have one thing in common: Affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is an excellent revenue stream that’s become widely popular as a tool to join the ranks of the massively successful bloggers.
Mainly because it’s a passive income stream – the best type of income there is.
So what exactly is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is typically when you promote other people’s products. Then someone purchases the item through your special affiliate link you’re given, and you earn a commission.
Every affiliate program you’re in will give you a unique link. That’s the link you’ll use when you’re promoting these products and/or services.
Alternatively, you can also create an affiliate program within your own website. Where you get other people to promote your products, and you pay them a commission on each sale they make.
How much can you earn with affiliate marketing?
With affiliate marketing, you’re paid in commissions that vary, depending on the company.
Smaller businesses and entrepreneurs tend to have higher commission rates, between 15-40%.
While large companies, or affiliate networks, tend to have lower rates. Ranging anywhere from 5%-10%. And in some cases, even less than 5%.
So you want to be on the lookout for commission rates, and always read the fine print when you’re applying to affiliate programs.
What’s the difference between an affiliate program and an affiliate network?
An affiliate program is a program that usually has only one product for you to promote.
However, in the case of entrepreneurs and some businesses, they have more than one product. So you can choose to promote one or more of that company’s products.
Affiliate networks have large quantities of merchants (different affiliate company’s affiliate programs), and they manage them all under their main site.
Share a Sale, for example, asks you to request to join them first, then once you’re approved, you can search through their merchants to find the affiliate programs that are relevant to you, then you can individually apply to each of those.
Here’s what an affiliate network (ShareASale) looks like:
As you can see, they tell you right off the bat that they have different categories of affiliate programs to join, which is why Share A Sale is so popular among bloggers.
How can you find affiliate programs to join?
- Search on Google for companies you already love or would be relevant to your target audience. You can do this by searching the “company’s name + affiliate program”.
- Take a gander on Pinterest for round-up posts that list affiliate programs. You’d be surprised how many blog posts have been created for this sole purpose!
- Contact companies you want to be an affiliate for!
Disclose your affiliate links
Whatever you do, make sure you do your research for every affiliate program or network you join – to avoid landing in big trouble. And always disclose that you have affiliate links in your blog posts.
This is a biggie!
Disclosing properly ensures you comply with the FTC laws.
Here’s an example of how Elna of Twin’s Mommy discloses her affiliate links:
The great thing about affiliate marketing is you can grow your income as big as you like. If you choose great products and products your target audience is actually interested in – you’ll rake in the dough like nobody’s business.
Plus, those raving fans we talked about will begin to buy through your links over other bloggers simply because they know and trust you.
This is in part why it’s vital to build those connections with your audience and develop a trusting relationship.
2. Offering services
One of the most rapid ways you can earn money on your blog is to offer services.
We are all great at something and have some type of expertise or knowledge that the world is waiting to gobble up.
All you have to do is find what you’re good at (or at least you can learn about and become an expert at).
Some services you can offer as a blogger:
- Freelance writing
- Graphic design
- Virtual assistant services
- Website design
- Website development
- Online tutors or teachers (you would usually need a teaching degree to do this)
- Creating printables (which can also be considered a digital product – which will we get into shortly)
- Coaching (life coaches, health coaches, business or blog coaches, etc)
- Starting a consultant business
And the list goes on!
Here’s a blogger, from Pretty Darn Cute. She offers website design, and is making a killing at it:
And here’s another blogger who offers blog coaching:
The beautiful thing about offering services is that anybody can do it. No matter what we tell ourselves at times – we are all excellent at something.
And you don’t have to necessarily stick with the first service you choose to offer.
Often times offering services is used as a stepping stone into blog monetization.
Unless, of course, you end up making decent money and run it into a thriving business. Which is becoming more and more common these days for bloggers.
Brainstorm some ideas of what you’re good at, and see if it coincides with any of the services you can offer as a blogger.
And I bet, you’ll find loads of services you can offer. Even as a brand new blogger.
Important note: Out of the popular money making methods mentioned in this post, offering services is the quickest to get started with. For example, some freelance writers have made a list of their ideal clients, cold pitched them on their services, and generated a solid number of gigs within a few months.
Advertisements are another common theme among bloggers – but it’s not always the best choice. Especially if you want to earn a sustainable income.
Advertisements are when you allow a company to put their ads on your website, and you will get paid either by how many people click the ad, or how many people view the ad.
The problem is, there are so many issues with taking this route to making money as a blogger (especially a new one).
A few issues bloggers will find arise with advertisements:
- Most people use “Ad Blockers” these days. So your ads may not even be seen.
- People don’t like ads.
- You need a great deal of page views to even be eligible to join many of the popular ad networks.
- You won’t make much money. You need hundreds of thousands of views, if not millions, to make any “real” money.
Like anything, there are advantages and disadvantages, and you have to find what works for you.
You can have good experiences with them – depending on how established you are as a blogger. And also depending on the company you partner with.
With that being said, your target audience should always be your number one. They’re the core of your blog, after all.
So, if you’re going to use advertisements on your blog – it’s best to ensure they’re relevant to your target audience.
If you blog about cooking and food, you don’t want ads popping up for sports equipment. So always look into how you can personalize them, if you decide to take that route.
There are advertisement management plugins you can use for WordPress, to make the management side of things easier. Or, you could go for a managed service like BuySellAds (although it’s difficult to get into the platform).
Either way, do your homework and if you decide to try out advertising as a stream of income – look into the company and ensure it’s right for your blog, and most importantly – your target audience.
4. Digital products
Creating digital products as a means of earning money through your blog has taken the blogging world by storm.
The options are endless, and you can’t beat the freedom it gives you.
But let’s back up.
What are digital products?
Digital products come in many forms, and are one of the best (if not the best) way to make money blogging.
They are products you create, that are digital. As opposed to physical products you would ship to customers.
Popular examples of digital products you can sell are:
- WordPress themes
- Stock Photos
- Video ( video masterclasses, video courses)
- Membership sites
The beauty of it is you can literally turn anything into a digital product.
This is where honing in on that target audience really comes into play. As people keep scrolling, they’re more likely to purchase items if the product is geared directly for them.
There are various ways you can house and sell your digital products.
Websites that allow you to sell your digital products:
- Thinkific – Used for selling online courses and housing membership sites. They have a free option, with the option to upgrade for more features.
- Teachable – Alternatively you can sell your e-courses on this well-known platform. The prices start from $39, all the way up to $499 per month. Depending on your needs.
- Gumroad -Gumroad allows you to sell digital products as well as physical products. It’s another popular one, where you can get started with a modest $10.
These are only a few of the many options out there, you’ll want to find what works best for your business and your budget.
5. Physical products
Selling physical products has become a go-to income stream for many bloggers and entrepreneurs in the past few years.
While it may seem like a daunting task to sell physical products – it’s actually easy-peasy once you hit your stride.
There are ways you can sell physical products and still save yourself major time and headaches. All well bringing in a decent chunk of change!
There’s two main ways you can sell physical products:
The old fashioned way: where you take care of everything. Your inventory, packing, shipping, etc.
Or, alternatively, you can save a few steps and try drop shipping.
What is dropshipping?
Drop shipping is when you sell physical products, but you don’t ever have to deal with inventory or shipping to your customers.
You (the merchant) have your products sent directly to the customers – instead of having the items sent to you first.
This saves on waiting time for customers, and it also saves you a massive amount of time going through the inventory, packaging it, and shipping off the correct items to the correct customers.
It can get confusing if you’re new to this world, but with a bit of research it can be pulled off seamlessly!
Depending if you go with a drop shipping company, or do it at yourself, you’ll need to look at different tools.
Loads of bloggers and entrepreneurs are making a decent income selling their physical products.
It just takes a different skill set, depending if you opt for the drop shipping option.
It may seem intimidating, and start up costs are generally higher than the other ways to make money blogging – but, it can be an extremely effective revenue stream or even a full-time career choice.
Now that you have learned about the various ways to monetize your blog, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty of starting your blog.
Before you can actually start your blog, there’s a few key components that you’ll want to cover.
1. Picking your niche
Just like your target audience, your niche will shape your entire blog.
For those of you who aren’t familiar – your niche is basically your industry, or what your blog’s about.
For example, Social Media Examiner is a website that focuses solely on social media.
So their niche would be digital marketing – but more specifically, social media.
Other popular niches include:
- Mom blogs
- Vegan blogs
- Recipe or cooking blogs
- Health and fitness blogs
- Beauty blogs
- Lifestyle blogs
- Fashion blogs
- Christian blogs
This list really could go on and on. There are ample niches to choose from.
You just need to figure out what niche your target audience fits best into.
The important part is that you have one.
That’s one of the biggest mistakes new (and some experienced) bloggers make – not having a clearly defined niche.
Sure, you might be able to make money with your blog, but then again – having a niche ties right into your target audience and we know how vital that is.
So you may find you struggle to gain traction as blogger until you stop and decide on your niche.
The best way to find a niche is to ask yourself these simple questions:
- Can I make money with this niche? A quick way to test it out is to see if other bloggers are having success with it.
- Are you truly passionate about this topic? Can you really see yourself writing about this topic for years to come, or is it a passing fad?
- Is it specific? You want to hone in on a niche as specific as you possibly can.
2. Choosing a name for your blog
Selecting a name for your blog may be one of the most difficult tasks you have to do. Especially if you fall into the perfectionist category – like many of us do.
But it doesn’t need to be challenging, if you take the right approach.
Factors to consider when choosing your blog’s name:
- Is the domain name available for this name? You can check if it’s available using NameCheap.
- Is it easily spelled/typed? You want to keep it as simple as possible. Always avoid words that have more than one spelling, like ‘’whole’’ and “hole”.
- Does it make sense for your target audience? Will it resonate with them?
- Can you add any keywords into your blog name? (Not necessary, but it certainly helps for SEO purposes!)
- Will it still make sense if you change your niche? You want to choose a blog name that’s not too specific. If you’re a beauty blogger you wouldn’t want to call it “foundation tutorials”, because chances are you’ll branch out and do more than foundation tutorials.
- Are there social media handles available that match your blog and domain name? You can change these a bit so they’re not exactly like your domain name, but it’s best to get it as close as possible, if not the exact wording of your blog’s name/domain name.
To find out if your blog’s new name is available on social media, there’s many tools for that. They will save you loads of time and energy.
The one I like is called KnowEm, because it gives you a great selection of social networks to look through.
To search for your domain name on KnowEm, just type your new blog’s name where I tried out “the beautified life”:
Next, just hit “Check It”. Then you’ll come to a screen like this, where you can see if it’s available on the social networks you’re most interested in:
If you want a more in-depth look, check out David’s post, Choosing The Perfect Domain Name For Your Blog: A Beginner’s Guide, where he talks about picking the perfect blog name in great detail.
3. Starting your blog
Now comes the exciting part – actually beginning your blog!
By this point you should have:
- Picked your niche
- Honed in on your target audience
- Chosen a name for your blog
If you have decided to go with self-hosted WordPress.org (which we do recommend for serious bloggers who want to earn real money), then you’re going to need to find a WordPress theme.
Unless you hire a WordPress designer, you’ll need a theme (which is a template for your blog).
This will make it easy-easy to customize your website and get the look and feel you want.
Here’s a great list of WordPress themes you can check out.
Once you’ve gotten all of those checked off, it’s time to start your new blog.
Colin has created an in-depth post showing you exactly how to start a profitable blog from start to finish. This post will walk you through every step of setting up your blog.
Start and grow an email list to maximize your income
When you hear bloggers say “the money is in the list”, they really aren’t kidding.
Growing your email list is a crucial factor if you want to make money blogging, grow your brand, and establish yourself as an authority figure in your niche.
First things first – you need to pick an email marketing provider so you can send emails to your subscribers.
Here are a few great options for email service providers:
- Mailerlite – An excellent option for beginners and experienced bloggers alike. Free for up-to 1,000 subscribers with the option to upgrade once your email list grows. There are no feature limitations on the free version (amazing!)
- ConvertKit – An email marketing platform built specifically for bloggers. It’s more expensive than Mailerlite, but it’s simplicity and blogger-centric features make the extra worthwhile. Especially if you’re considering using the content upgrade technique.
Now that you have chosen a email provider, you can move on to some of the most crucial parts of starting and growing your email list rapidly.
A few quick tips to jumpstart your email list and get the ball rolling:
- Create an opt-in freebie (or lead magnet) that will directly solve a problem for your audience. This’ll bring loads of email subscribers.
- Put content upgrades (similar to an opt-in freebie, or lead magnet – they’re just created for specific blog posts).
- Place opt-in forms all over your website that are attention-grabbing and use good copywriting to make your audience want to sign up.
- Create a welcome series for your audience. This’ll be the first impression of you, so you want to spend some time perfecting this.
If you already have paid products to sell, you can work on getting your sales funnel set up.
Your email list is another reason why it’s essential to hone in on your target audience and what problems you can solve for them right away.
Not only in your emails, but if you want to fill your sales funnel with potential buyers – it’s super important to grow your email list full of your target audience/target customers.
Concentrate on content marketing to earn more revenue
Crafting informative and valuable content is key to earning money with your blog or business.
You might be under the impression that the blogging world is already far too noisy. But I can assure you that content marketing is just as effective as ever.
No matter how many people are already in your niche, or essentially doing the “same” thing you are – there’s always more room.
60% of content on the web is considered to be “poor-quality”. This gives you a heck of a shot at creating the type of high-quality content your audience is searching for.
And a leg up on your competitors in the same niche, if your content is captivating and valuable.
If you’re still not convinced that content marketing is vital to your business, check out these facts and studies:
- According to this study, if you have a blog you’ll have 434% more indexed pages than if you didn’t have a blog.
- 77% of people surfing the net are reading blogs.
- 53% of marketers in 2017 said that content marketing was their top priority.
- Small businesses who blog see 126% more lead growth than those small businesses who don’t blog.
So where do you begin with content marketing?
First, create a content marketing plan.
Things to consider in your content marketing plan:
- Know your audience and niche inside out (you should have this down pat by this point)
- Define your goals for your content
- Consider planning for each quarter (every 3 months) or if you’re feeling motivated – for the full year.
- Come up with a list of blog post ideas to save yourself time down the road. Make it part of your content strategy to have content planned at least a month in advance!
Now that you have your content marketing plan underway – it’s time to figure out
What type of content will you produce?
- Blog posts
- Video content
- Case studies
- E-books or e-courses
- Presentations (on SlideShare.net)
Infographics are highly effective in any content marketing strategy, for a number of reasons. One study found that infographics are 30% more likely to be viewed than plain text content.
When you’re doing your content marketing planning, you may want to consider using an editorial calendar.
Editorial calendars, or “content calendars” will keep you organized and ahead of schedule so you’re never scrambling last minute to come up with content for your blog.
You’re probably wondering how to create this “valuable” content that’s been mentioned. There are tons of variables that make up stellar content, and sometimes it will vary depending on your niche.
How to create top-notch, valuable content:
- Format your posts using lots of white space, bullet points (like this one), headings, and subheadings.
- Mix up the type of content you produce (video, infographics, blog posts, etc)
- Include images and other visuals in your blog posts (like screenshots where relevant, graphs, and charts, (again if relevant to the content).
- Use a “hook” as your beginning sentence of every post that pulls the reader in and makes them curious and intrigued. And an intro of about 100 words (more if it’s a long article), and always sum it up with a conclusion.
- Craft evergreen content that will be relevant no matter what time a year.
- Always have your audience in mind when writing. Your posts should be geared to solve their problems, or help them with issues their facing, or benefit them in some way. Always!
- Use long-form content whenever possible (depending on your niche). It performs better on social media and with search engines like Google in most cases.
In fact, the top 10 search inquiries is over 2000-words, according to Social Media Today’s study:
Note: While long-form content will typically rank best, it depends on the intent of the searcher and the keyword groups you want to rank for.
The reality is that for some keywords, the answer people are looking for is a short answer. For example, if someone searches for “When is Pancake day?”, they won’t be looking for a 3,000 word guide on how to work out when Pancake day is.
Ok, that was an excessive example but it should illustrate my point here.
On the flip side, if someone searches for “How to do keyword research”, they’re probably not looking for a one word answer. Most likely a more significant guide.
The takeaway here is to always consider what people would be looking for when they search for the keywords you want to rank for.
And if you need help with keyword research, be sure to check out David Hartshorne’s complete beginner’s guide to keyword research.
After you’ve created your content plan, content calendar, and learned how to write effective content – it’s time to get out there and start writing!
Get started writing
You’ll want to have at least 3 blog posts ready to go on your website before you launch (more if you can). Try to make these “pillar posts” to set the bar high.
And you’ll want to decide how often to blog. There’s really no right answer – but I suggest once a week is a perfect balance. You don’t want to water down your content just so you can post several times a week. But you also don’t want your audience to forget about you and allow your blog traffic to take a nose dive by not posting for long periods of time.
Most importantly – write for your audience. This is how you’ll see those slews of traffic pouring in. And your blog flourishing into a money-making machine.
And Google tends to rank content that is focused on users!
Establish yourself in the online world
When you start blogging – you’re usually a nobody. But you don’t have to start off that way.
If you haven’t launched your blog yet – nows the perfect time to start social media accounts for your blog and use those other strategies to get your name out there.
And if you have already begun your blog – you really want to get moving on establishing yourself online.
3 great ways to establish yourself online quickly and get noticed
- Start commenting on blogs in your niche and authority blogs. Make sure you’re leaving quality comments, and not something generic like “great post!”.
- Join quality Facebook Groups in your niche, and start engaging as much as humanly possible.
- Create social media accounts for your blog. Start following loads of people in your niche.
When it comes to social media – you don’t want to overwhelm yourself with joining too many networks at first.
Pick a few that you know you can commit to being active and engaging on. Otherwise you’ll be spreading yourself too thin and several of your accounts won’t get the love they need to grow!
The networks you choose will depend on your niche – but keep in mind the most popular ones (especially for blogger and business owners).
- Create a social media marketing strategy to supercharge your results with social media
- Start a Facebook business page
- Start a Facebook group (you can use this in combination with your email list to bring in loads of money while establishing lasting connections).
- Start a Instagram account (depending on your niche this could be a golden opportunity to grow your blog traffic and find and connect with your target audience).
- Create a Twitter profile
- Start a Pinterest account. Pinterest is a marketing powerhouse for building traffic.
- Carefully craft a Linkedin profile
All of which will save you time and energy so you can spend it on more important aspects of your blog.
Grow your blog into a money-making machine
The only thing missing on your blog to convert it into a money-making machine now is, well, people!
There are countless tactics and strategies to grow your blog’s traffic that you can try out and see what works best for your specific blog.
But there are a few strategies that are well-known for being some of the quickest and most effective tactics you can try.
1. Blogger outreach
Blogger outreach is one of the all-time most effective ways to grow your blog traffic, get more social shares, and establish yourself as an authority figure in your niche.
What is blogger outreach?
Blogger outreach is when you leverage influencers (usually by creating a roundup post) in your niche to get more social shares and traffic.
As I mentioned, typically this is done by creating a roundup post. This is when you create a post and mention as many as 20-50 influencers in your blog.
Then, you carefully craft a stellar outreach email or let them know or social media that they’ve been featured.
It’s brilliant, really.
Just make sure the email is personalized, and not something generic that screams “cut and pasted!”
2. Guest blogging
I’m sure you’ve heard of the wonders of guest blogging.
But maybe you didn’t want to part with your well-written content?
Or perhaps you just don’t have the time?
Either way – it’s an effective strategy that every blogger (especially new bloggers) should be utilizing.
If you’re not familiar, guest blogging is when you write a blog post for another website and typically you get at least one, if not a few, links back to your own site or content.
So in essence, you’re exchanging your content for blog traffic, influence, and credibility in your niche.
Sounding a bit better now, right?
You may now be curious how you go about jumping on this traffic-building bandwagon.
How to guest blog effectively:
- Find blogs that are in your niche. Take a peek around at your favorite blogs to see if they accept guest posts. Try searching in Google “the blogs name + guest post”, and see if something comes up.
- Ensure they’re high-quality websites. (They have engaged people in the comment section, they’re either a popular niche blog, a big influencer, or a large website like The Huffington Post).
- Use the “BIO” space they give you wisely. Every blog’s different but generally you’ll get to post 1-2 links of your own in this space. Do you want to use it to grow your email list? Promote a paid course or e-book? Link to your business website?
- Perfect your guest post pitch. Spend a great deal of time working out the perfect subject line, and take your time with the email itself. Ensure it’s personalized, or it’s bound to end up in their trash as fast as they clicked it. And most importantly: show them what you have to offer and how it’ll benefit them!
- Make sure you promote that guest post after it’s accepted and published to help speed up the results for them, and for yourself.
With the right guest posting strategy, this tactic can do wonders for your blog and build it up rapidly.
If you’re not utilizing this marketing powerhouse to grow your blog – I suggest you don’t waste any more time.
Pinterest has taken the blogging world by storm because of how potent it is for bringing traffic to your blog posts.
There are endless components to creating a winning Pinterest marketing strategy, but a good start is to create a Pinterest Business Account.
Without a business account, you won’t have access to various features that are crucial to making Pinterest work for bloggers and business owners.
But there are many, many other steps to ensure you kill it on Pinterest. But we’ll get into the most vital ones so you start seeing results fast.
How to get started with Pinterest to drive loads of traffic and earn more money:
- Enable rich pins, after you’ve set up your business account.
- Create a snazzy Pinterest profile. (An eye-catching profile picture, use keywords in your name and in your description)
- Create relevant boards that’ll resonate with your target audience. Make ALL personal boards “secret”.
- Craft beautiful and cohesive board covers for your boards using a tool like Canva.
- Find a scheduling tool. Pinterest’s algorithm is tricky, and to be successful you need to appear to be pinning consistently, all day long.
- Pin 20-30 pins to each of your boards to get started. Make sure these are relevant to your audience.
- Start following people to get the ball rolling so you start to gain followers. I recommend following your competitor’s followers, as you’ll know they will enjoy your content. Win, win!
- Craft stunning Pinterest graphics. Use a tool like Canva or PicMonkey. A few tips: Use lots of white space, don’t use human faces, use red, pink, and orange hues, stick to 2-3 fonts, and use a beautiful stock image in the background then overlay the text over top.
- Be active on Pinterest manually, as well as using a scheduling tool like TailWind.
Pinterest is a goldmine for gaining more traffic and eventually more revenue, so don’t ignore it or put it on your buried “to do list”.
It’ll be one of the best things you do for your blog, and can be one of the quickest ways to gain traffic.
Many bloggers see the majority of their traffic from Pinterest these days.
How do bloggers make money?
Bloggers make money through different streams of income, some directly on their blogs, and some that just stem from their blogs.
The most popular ways to make money as a blogger is affiliate marketing, selling digital products, offering services, advertisements, selling stock photography, or starting a membership site.
Can you make a full-time income blogging?
Absolutely. There are countless bloggers making full-time incomes as we speak. Some bloggers are even able to become millionaires with the help of their blog.
Although to get to that point it takes a few years, and not everyone achieves those heights of success.
But a full-time income? Any new blogger can make that happen.
How much does it cost to start a blog?
If you go with our recommendation, self-hosted WordPress.org – it’s free to start, you just need to pay for web hosting and a domain name.
You can also test the waters by trying out a free blogging platform.
However, that’s not suggested if you’re hoping to earn money from your blog!
How long will it take for me to start earning money?
This will vary for every blogger. Some bloggers earn hundreds within their first month or two, and end up reaching 6 or 7-figures by the end of their first or second year. While others don’t make a dime for ages.
It all depends on many factors and how much hard work, time, and effort you’re willing to put into your blog.
Do I need previous experience to start a blog?
Nope. You don’t need any experience with websites or even writing for that matter to start a blog and turn it into a business. Although, it definitely helps.
What blogging platforms are the best if you want to earn a decent income blogging?
Self-hosted WordPress.org is light-years ahead of any blogging platform you can find.
There are many options out there, but none of them are as customizable and have as much functionality as self-hosted WordPress.
Hands down, it’s the way to go if you want to make money blogging and be taken seriously.
Wrapping it up
As you’ve seen, as a blogger your options are endless when it comes to the different income streams you can partake in.
While many of these ways may not be directly on your blog, your blog opens many doors for you.
Just having a blog with quality content and a specific target audience will help you establish yourself in your niche in no time at all.
Not only that, but you’ll build an army of raving fans who enjoy your content, open every email you send, and eagerly sit on your wait lists for your newest paid offerings.
That is the power of a well-defined target audience.
Those are the people who will write heartfelt emails that make those exhausting nights all worth it.
It’s no wonder that people all over the world are joining the blogging world and turning it into a career.
If you haven’t begun your blog yet and you’re ready to take the plunge, check out Colin’s step-by-step guide on starting a new blog to join the ever-growing community of bloggers.