Many people start blogs as a hobby and, over time, it grows larger than they ever expected. Oftentimes, they have no idea how to turn the influence they’ve developed into a steady income stream.
They try a few monetization strategies that bring in just enough to cover hosting costs and pay for a few bills.
In the end, the income doesn’t grow beyond a certain point because they have no idea of the potential it contains. With the right monetization strategies, a blog with a decent amount of traffic can earn a relatively large income.
In this post, you’ll learn about multiple strategies to increase your blog income in 2020.
One of the fastest ways to earn an income online is through affiliate marketing. Many people have tried it and failed. That’s for a number of reasons such as:
- Not understanding how affiliate marketing works
- Promoting the wrong programs for their audience
- Not focusing on dedicated affiliate content
- Failing to deliver value alongside their affiliate marketing
All of the reasons above are completely avoidable and there’s no reason you can’t succeed with affiliate marketing. The first thing to understand is what people in your niche are already buying. You can find this out by researching other affiliate marketing sites and creating content that’s better than theirs.
NerdWallet is a large affiliate marketing site in the personal finance space. In the example below, it’s recommending products from its affiliate partners in a transparent way.
The content is useful but someone could easily make something more comprehensive.
Go beyond the bare minimum and take advantage of email marketing tools, link tracking software, analytics tools, and more.
Together, these things will give you multiple opportunities to present the right products to your audience and understand what’s working and what isn’t.
If you’ve built a blog with a decent amount of search traffic and authority, you’ve done the impossible. The same can be said if you have a social media following in the tens of thousands.
If that’s you then you can consult with other brands on how you did it. Even if you don’t think you’ve done anything special, that’s far from the truth. I’ve not even touched on consulting around the main topic of your blog.
If you have a verifiable track record in anything:
- Search advertising
- Social media management
You can consult for other people or brands so they can get similar or even better results. Create a page on your website that details the kind of consulting you do and how it’s structured.
For example, if it’s group coaching, let people know how often you’ll communicate with them, the length of the conversations, and other elements of the package. If you’re taking a more hands-on approach, let them know all of the deliverables.
Even if you get one client at $1,000/m, that’s a full-time income in less than a year.
If you have different kinds of consulting packages because you serve different kinds of people then consider setting up a quiz funnel. You can ask people a series of questions and then show people the package that best fits their situation. This will help you get more
Courses are a powerful way to scale your earnings online. Many people jump to creating courses before they’ve proven that they have a replicable strategy.
Instead of jumping in head first, I’d strongly recommend you take on a few consulting clients. This will help you refine your strategies, see where others struggle, and get your first few testimonials. Conversely, you can test your potential course topics using a platform using Skillshare. Create a 30-minute class and see if people are interested.
Also, observe the type of questions they ask. They will help you structure your main course.
There’s a simple process you can follow to choose the perfect course topic and build the course itself.
- Send a survey to your audience to understand what they struggle with the most
- Build an outline of the course (all lessons and modules)
- Create the first two modules and release it as a quick start aspect and see the response
- Tweak based on feedback
- Before creating the rest of the course, offer it for presale at a discounted price
Once you’re fully committed to creating your course, sign up for one of the many online course platforms. Some of them are free and will allow you to upload all your content and even take paying students.
To maximize this strategy, I suggest you use a simple launch strategy that applies urgency to what you’re doing. If people don’t buy the course now then they won’t have access to it for another six months or one year.
You can use webinar software to generate leads and get people excited about the course launch, and even offer a special deal for attendees. The key is to make sure your webinar is closely aligned with the course you plan on selling at the end.
A popular blogger that does this is Joanna Wiebe. She has a number of courses that focus on different aspects of copywriting.
Each one is available at specific times of the year and if you miss the launch you have to wait for another year before it’s available again.
Beyond creating your course content, it’s important to design graphics for your landing pages, infographics to promote the course, useful handouts, and thoughtful ads (if you’re using them). It’ll help create the right impression and support the landing page copy.
Another method to increase income for your blog is through the use of strategic partnerships. A blog with authority has a following in some way, shape, or form. That may be a large social media following, an email list, or traffic generated through SEO or other means.
Other brands want to borrow the authority and trust you’ve built up over time and get in front of your audience. One of the quickest methods to do that is by accepting sponsored posts.
There are a number of things to consider before you accept a sponsored post:
- Who’s creating the content?
- What kind of brands will you work with (are there any niches that are off-limits)?
- What price point is in your sweet spot and what’s the absolute lowest you will accept?
- How are you justifying that price for brands that are interested?
- What methods will you use to keep your sponsored post pipeline full?
These are just a few of the questions you should be able to answer before you start accepting sponsored posts. When you’ve hashed out all the details, you can then create a simple page on your website that shares your major stats like:
- Email list size
- Average session duration
Below is an example of a document that shares details with advertisers so they can make an informed decision about the suitability of the website.
Visit the page and look at the kind of information being shared with potential sponsors. It’s designed to give them a better idea of the people that visit the website on a regular basis.
Don’t be daunted if your stats aren’t as impressive as the ones there. All it means is that you won’t have the same price point for sponsored posts.
Most blogs, unless they’re attached to an ecommerce brand don’t consider selling a mistake. This is an opportunity that’s overlooked by most bloggers. They’re so focused on the scalability of digital-first revenue that they forget about the power of tangible products.
Keep in mind that this may not work for every type of blog but it should still be considered. Some ideas could be:
- Physical journals
- Meal plan guides
- Physical books
Again, it depends on your niche and what you’re offering people. Set up a separate storefront using a tool like Shopify or Woocommerce and test out different product offerings until you find the ones that work best for you.
If you’re at a complete loss for what to create, send out a survey to your audience with a few ideas and ask them to vote. Whichever one gets the best response will be the product you make.
Don’t overthink it or try to create in a bubble. That’s a surefire way to create a product that no one wants.
Many bloggers think of their income in one dimension. They focus all of their time and attention on one method like advertising or affiliate marketing. While these are solid strategies for generating income, you’re leaving money on the table if that’s all you do.
This guide has touched on five different ways to make money from your blog. Of course, there are more ways but this is a solid list to give you a few ideas. Start with one and slowly add more methods until you reach or surpass your income goals.
Let me know how you’re generating income from your blog in the comments and don’t forget to share.