These are the top methods of making money from a blog. The first 2 methods are our favourite and a great mix for anyone looking to make a great income with their blog and website.
1) Using Contextual Ads
There are many companies, networks and programs you can use to make money from your blog. And we will talk about them next. But the success of all and any of these monetisation methods depends on one thing, that is, the quality of your blog content. It doesn't matter if it's the written word, pictures or videos. As long as you deliver good quality content, it has a lot more chances of becoming popular and driving traffic to your blog.
No matter what kind of monetisation method you use, the revenue generated is directly proportional to the number of visitors you get on your blog.
This cardinal rule is true for everyone online, from the major players to personal blogs. Quality content draws search engine searches and gets shared more on social media.
There are many ways to create quality content for your blog. Big interesting topics, create original stuff. Include rich media like pictures and videos whenever you can. You don't really have to go out of your way to find interesting topics to write about. The best thing is to find a topic of your interest. This goes a long way and inspiring you to sustain your writing and creating content without getting tired or bored after entire process.
AdSense. The most popular advertising program by Google. It is easy to implement and delivers the best revenue for most blogs as compared to other ad networks.
AdSense kind of advertising networks are also known as CPC networks. CPC stands for cost per click. It means that you earn every time someone clicks on one of the advertisements on your blog.
AdSense is easy to implement. There are simple ways to add a small code snippet to your blog. The relevant ads will appear on their own, controlled by Google's algorithm.
Google mainly shows two types of ads on a blog, contextual and interest based.
Contextual advertisements deem to match the subject of the content. For example, an article on gardening will show advertisements related to the subject of gardening. Since contextual ads match the interest of the browser, they are more likely to click on the advertisement. That's what makes contextual advertising profitable and an appealing prospect for any blogger.
Interest based ads are shown on the basis of what a person has been looking for before coming to your blog. Whenever someone visits a website, that website usually leaves a trace of that visit on the user's computer or mobile device in the form of cookies. Also many ad networks have cookies of their own that track the movement of the user. These are harmless cookies and the data collected is anonymous. No personally identifiable information is recorded. You can also opt out of these cookies if you wish.
The end result is that an ad network like google knows where you've been before and can serve you ads matching that browsing history.
For example if you are interested in buying a new car, and have been looking up, let's say, Chevrolet, the next website you visit can show you Chevrolet advertising even if the website topic and content you are looking at has nothing to do with cars. These ads are based on your previous browsing interests and hence known as interested based advertisements.
If the visitor was looking at certain items on Amazon, AdSense will show advertisements from Amazon. This is one of the greatest advantages of running advertisements with AdSense. Since google is the most popular search engine, it has a robust inventory of advertisers. It can serve ads from a wide variety of genres of product, service and industry.
There are other contextual ad networks as well and one of the ones that we recommend is Media.net. They also have a large inventory of advertisers which includes advertisements from the Microsoft and Bing search engine.
In fact, for certain blogs this program will prove to be more profitable than Adsense. Many bloggers try a combination of both the networks and decide based on the results. There are other networks like Chitika, but they are not purely contextual. They also demand large volume of traffic to be profitable. Any ad network that you want to join will have certain requirements for your blog. These requirements differ from one network to another but usually include things like age of the blog and the amount of organic traffic you get on your blog.
Traffic requirement is a very common the requisite and some networks will not accept your application below a certain limit. Another common requirement is that your graphical location for your traffic. This is usually because The network as most of its advertisement inventory from advertisers in a particular location. This is the reason why most new blogs will have problems qualifying with several ad networks. And that's precisely why we recommend concentrating on creating great content first and promoting it. However, there are other methods of monetising your blog besides contextual advertising which do not have such limitations.
2) Affiliate and Referral Income.
We highly recommend this. One of the most profitable ways of making money through a blog is with affiliate and a referral programs. It can lead to a much more sizeable income as compared to other revenue generation programs.
There are many affiliate networks you can join for free such as Clickbank, ShareSale, Commission Junction etc. They also have far less requirements from your website as compared to the ad networks mentioned above. You can virtually join and promote any product as you will.
These sites have many products and services that you can promote on your blog. When an interested visitor clicks and buys from your link you get paid up to as much as 90% of the selling price which can be hundreds of dollars for a single point of purchase.
A very popular kind of product to promote are e-courses, e-books and all kinds of digital products. You can make lots of money promoting these products because you get paid as much as 90% of the total selling price. Examples are: health and fitness programs, self-help guides, do-it-yourself courses etc. The success of your affiliate income depends a lot on the content of your blog and how well matched it is to the interests of your visitors. The more targeted your visitors are, the more responsive they will be to the products you promote.
3) Using content networks.
This is a very popular monetisation technique for blogs today. It is believed that more than 70% of all blogs, including the major websites, use content networks to monetise or promote their content. These kind of networks are good for all kinds of blogs, and especially those that are news and information based, and do not have a direct and related product or service to advertise and sell.
Instead of showing ads for products and services, various sponsored posts from other blogs are displayed. You have a certain amount of control over the kind of content that is displayed. For example you can control the Parental Ratings. Many bloggers have discovered that the click through rate and the revenue from these kind of ads matches that of contextual networks and in many cases, is more.
The content network ads are an effective option when the content of the blog is generic, news based where the contextual adverts like AdSense might have problem displaying related ads. These ads tend to perform pretty well because they show interesting and attention grabbing posts from other blogs which encourage the visitor to click through to those articles. Every time that a visitor does that, you get paid.
4) Sell Your Own Product
This method of monetisation is recommended for various reasons. As long as you are using other programs you are dependent on the continuance of those services for your income. However, things can change. A certain service you are promoting might go out of business. You should at some point start working on creating something of your own to sell. The most popular products to sell e-book's, E courses and guides. They are digital product so the price that you sell them for is almost all pure profit. You can sell them directly on your website using a host of ancillary services like PayPal and Clickbank among a host of others.
5) Sell Space
If your blog becomes popular you can start selling ad space on it. Create a page inviting people to advertise with you and set your own rates. There are also websites like buysellads.com that help you sell ad space on your website. This is usually an option reserved for blogs that see a very generic viewership and cannot monetise effectively with any of the above mentioned methods. You also need to have a sizeable viewership to make money through this.
This concludes the top five ways of making money from a blog or website. Do share your comments below specially if you have more ideas about how to go about monetising a blog. Your questions and queries are also welcome as always.