How Do You Make Money from Your Blog?

Rich Brooks
By: Rich Brooks | March 30th, 2012

Dear Rich,

I have a full time job, but I’m very passionate about staying healthy, eating right, and exercising, all on a limited budget.

I want to start a blog so I can share my story, provide tips and advice, and help others. 

I also want to make some money doing it!

Can I have a blog without a website? If so, how can I monetize my blog?

– Monetizing in Machais

Dear Monetizing,

You can definitely have a blog without a traditional website. However, these days the line between blog and website is so blurry as to be inconsequential. Your blog will probably have several static pages, such as an About page and a Contact page at a minimum. 

One way you can make money from your blog is by selling ads. Unless you get a huge following you’ll probably never be able to quit your day job this way, but it will offer you passive streams of income. You could start with Google Adsense, which is probably the easiest way to get going. There are also plenty of blog-specific ad networks out there, including BlogAds.

If you want to increase the money you make off of each ad you’ll have to sell them yourself, which can be more time consuming for both the sales process and managing the ads yourself.

Advertisers will be interested in how many people they can reach through your blog, so you’ll need to build your numbers up. 

You may want to check out 25 Ways to Promote and Market Your Blog to get more traffic.

If you’re wondering what to charge, find similar blogs that take advertising and ask for their advertising rates. (Note: this does require some subterfuge. Try not to mention you’re soon to be a direct competitor. And who knows? If they’re undercharging, maybe you should advertise your blog on theirs!)

Another way you can make money off your blog is through affiliate programs. There are probably plenty of books on Amazon that you’ve read and could recommend through your blog, taking a little bit of each sale through the Amazon affiliate program. Likewise, there may be inexpensive athletic equipment you could recommend. These affiliate links could be within blog posts themselves (although by law you need to mention that it’s an affiliate link) or posing as ads in the side columns.

You should also check out sites like Commission Junction and ClickBank. Through these affiliate marketplaces you can find products with affiliate programs that are in line with your values and the message of your blog.

A third way to make money off your blog is by creating, promoting and selling your own e-product. Maybe you could put together a book of inexpensive recipes or workouts that don’t require expensive equipment or a gym membership. Maybe you could create an e-book called 101 Ways to Get Exercise Out of Every Day Activities or a video program that shows how to exercise using items found around the house.

Using services like e-junkie or 1ShoppingCart you can then sell these virtual goods to the audience you’ve attracted.

Do you have any other ways in which you’ve made money from your blog? Let us know!

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About the Author: Rich Brooks is president of flyte new media, a Web site design and Internet marketing company in Portland, Maine. Flyte works with small businesses to build professional Web sites that often include e-commerce, Flash and content management systems. They promote their clients' sites through search engine optimization, e-mail marketing, business blogs and social media. You can follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/therichbrooks.



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