How to start a blog and make money in 2020
First you need to take on the persona of a business owner - think of your self as a startup with unlimited potential.
Make all your decisions as if it were a business. In the beginning it is likely just you as your only staff member.
What do you think is your most VALUABLE asset?
If you keep that in the back of your mind as you go through the process then you have a much higher chance of success. Because your decisions will be made as a business owner who is very aware of his or her most limited resource - time.
Why do businesses and blogs succeed online?
Blogs or Business succeed online
- because they either solve a problem that people are prepared to pay for or
- because they provide a service that people are prepared to pay for
Spot the similarity here - people must be prepared to pay - so when you do your niche research this is a key evaluation criteria.
If you want to make money online then learning how to start a blog is a good step but you also need to consider that it is the beginning of your online business and as we have talked about above - put on a business hat when making decisions about how you spend your time or money that you will invest in your business.
At the end of this section I am going to give you the top three things you must do to succeed in blogging and the top thing you must avoid.
Then I want you to read the rest of the article using these principles to make or base your decisions on.
Many people are concerned that with the millions of bloggers out there already that the market is saturated. Well the answer is not really - It is well reported even by google that more than 95% of internet sites out there - get no visitors - so the competition is not insurmountable especially if you pick the right niche and follow a proven system(s).
So to succeed you need to know how to evaluate and select a niche. This is a critical step and you need to do it properly. (more on this later)
You also need some business fundamentals to base your activity on.
Lastly when you start to get visitors to your site then you need to learn how to scale that small success into bigger and bigger success.
We at GetVirtualNow have spent many years building successful websites and also trying many courses. Of course we have made some mistakes in many purchases and even in my first choice of niche. However I am happy about that because that is how you learn, from your mistakes. If blogging is not for you read our article on other ways you can make $1000 per month
I have also sifted out the scams - and you do need to be cautious online. Look if you are not sure about something just shoot me an email using our contact form - if I can help you I will reply quickly - usually within 24 hours.
This ultimate guide on blogging and starting a website for beginners will cover the necessary tactics to have you succeed and build a foundation that can be scaled - and I can not stress how important it is to have the foundation correct - or you will not be able to scale - and scaling your site or blog is how you make job replacement income.
Three Fundamental Keys to success for blogging and online affiliate marketing
Keyword Research. You Must Master How To Do This Or Your Site Will Not Rank In Google
Learn How to Write Amazing Content That Readers Find Helpful And Engaging
Learn How to Get Inbound Links To Your Site
And thats it - everything else is Noise and if you do the above three well you can largely ignore all the other thousands of SEO tips and people trying to steal your TIME with their latest ideas to double you traffic etc..
Now I also said one thing you must not do - I have kind of covered it above but let me say it this way-
Learn How To Ignore Shiny Objects
By that I mean there are thousands and thousands of tools, online courses, well meaning people with tips to double your income, win the snippet and so much more - learn to ignore them - trust the above three key points and ignore the rest and you will get there.
What are the key steps to starting a profitable and successful blog?
- Select your blog niche
- Do your blog content plan (first 10 articles)
- Choose a domain name
- Choose your hosting
- Choose your blog theme
- Choose your SEO plugin
- Research Longer-Term Content Strategy
- Create Your First Link Building Plan
- Monetize your Content
- Key Next Steps
Ask yourself a personal question - Why do you want to do this?
What are the top 10 reasons People begin their blogging journey?
- To make money - make a nest egg for retirement
- You have a passion and want to create an audience around that niche.
- Quitting your full-time job and the grind
- Avoid The rat race
- Freedom to work from anywhere
- Take your family on a vacation
- Pay off your house mortgage
- Learn and Build a new skillset for the future
- Spending more time with your family.
Whatever the reason make sure you write down your reasons - write them on a card and put them in a place you will see each morning. I will also talk about this a little later with our one page plan.
So lets get to the first step in starting a money making blog online in 2020
How To Select Your Blog Niche
Selecting your niche is a critical success factor for your blog - get it wrong and it is hard to recover.
There are endless blogging ideas - and probably some of the worst advice is to pursue your passion. If you want to build a business you would only do that if you knew that you could commercialize that passion or knowledge.
The key to niche selection is to be able to apply a set of steps or a method to evaluate is the niche going to profitable.
When choosing a niche you must think of your reader or customer first. What problem are they looking to solve.
In solving those problems are the products good and is there good affiliate programs that will pay you a commission for evaluating and recommending good products. Maybe there are info products that you can sell.
Remember this is your business - you would not start a normal business without profitable products or services - and just the same you would not start a blog or online business with no hope of making a profit.
Also use google trends to examine is the niche you are investigating growing? Also use a keyword tool to get an idea of how many people are looking for products, services or solutions in your proposed niche.
Also investigate what is the competition like - can you really break to this niche.
For example some niches like finance or credit cards are incredibly competitive and you would be advised not to go after these for your first site.
Think also of seasonality, and also is it a growing or shrinking market - use google trends here.
Is your niche seasonal? Again you can use google trends to look for spikes in traffic at certain times of the year.
Is your niche evergreen - Weight Loss for example is what many people term an “evergreen niche” it never goes out of demand.
Choosing your niche is your single most important decision you will make - and while there are many courses on this - they are part of a larger course which often costs thousands - and niche selection is usually only a small part of the course.
However there are some that we do recommend.
But what I strongly suggest is you spend $19.95 and go through our Niche Selection Blueprint - read more here. It is focused only on teaching you how to evaluate and select niches.
2. How to Validate Your Niche
Validating your niche is important and there is no better way than creating your initial content plan and testing it against your site goals and revenue potential.
Doing the research and find keywords and topics you can write about is easy.
Doing the research and finding keywords you can rank for is hard.
That is why I strongly recommend you take our micro course Niche Blueprint course which takes you through all aspects of niche selection and validation up to creating your first 10 articles.
Here the top steps to validating your niche
- Look for an Active Marketplace
- The top thing you need to validate for a niche or a new business is that there will be customers.
- Search Google and look for existing blogs or businesses that are successful in this niche. They may be selling products, services, or info products to the people in your target audience.
- Basically the more active the niche the better and look for evidence that your target audience has money and is prepared to spend
- Examine these competitors - how strong are they - can you beat them in a reasonable amount of time
- We will show you how to do that in a scientific way - so you can rate each competitor
- Find a Clear Point of Differentiation
- You need to consider differentiation. If you just play copycat with a similar blog or service then all you can compete on is the price and that is not a recipe for long-term success.
- The good thing is if you have a blog and you are doing affiliate marketing you can look for products that have differentiated themselves and write about them. Naturally - only products that have affiliate commissions is what you focus on in the beginning.
There are lot more steps in this process and we suggest you spend up to two weeks in this process - do it once - do it right
So now you have validated your niche, you need a way to keep track of everything.
By that I mean not just your todo list or content ideas, but also your high level goals and why you are motivated to achieve them.
Do not make this complicated - and certainly keep I it less than one page. But the key thing is it is written down so I can refer to it often and review my progress.
Remember Keep It Simple - and avoid at all costs the urge to chase shinny new objects.
The first one or two paragraphs are what you, your blog is about and how you are going to serve your customer in the short term (3 Months) and then 1 paragraph about the longer term.
Then the rest is on the actual actions you will take over the next 3 months to get your blogging business started.
- Then have your first 5 posts outline in detail (just headings and sub topics.)
- Have the next 10 posts or articles brainstormed
Now set some activity goals which might be
For my first one page plan, I would have the following
- Complete my About me Page
- Have my First Topic (HUB/Silo) selected and write and publish 2 articles of 1500 words in the first month.
- these articles will be better than my competition on page 1 of google search results (SERPs)
- Write and publish 6 more articles on my first hub
- including 2 money articles
- 3 informational supporting posts
- 1 Skyscrapper Article for outreach
- Interlinking these together correctly
- Research more content based on winnable keywords
- Begin Email Outreach for my Skyscrapper Article (see our micro-course on winning Backlinks)
- Create an infographic covering my key articles
Continue to Research and update
- What is your blog's unique value proposition?
- What is your reader's problem and how do you solve it?
- What are the main sections or categories for your blog?
- Future article ideas with their target keywords.
It is important to make this a document that is alive and you refer to and update often - but remember keep it simple.
3. How to Research And Choose your domain name
How to Choose A Blog Name
Choosing the right domain name for your website is a key step. So take your time here because changing it later can be a hassle and is not good for SEO purposes either.
See if you can come up with a brandable business name.
Top Tips For Choosing a Blog Domain Name
- Stick with .com, .net, or .org unless you are going to develop a software product and then you might consider.io
- Use your main keywords in your domain name search
- Try to keep your domain name as short as possible - not more than 3 words
- Make it easy to pronounce and spell
- See if you can make it brandable
- Avoid hyphens in the domain name
There are a number of great domain name generators out there and do not forget to use a thesaurus.
Take your time here as you do not know what to be changing it later. When you do find one Act quickly before someone else takes it.
Before you register a domain name, try to find out if there is already a registered business using the same name.
You can perform a trademark search
to see if there is already a similar or exact name already trademarked.
4. How to Choose the best wordpress hosting for your blog
Ok so we have figured out your niche and that it is viable.
You have a one page business plan written down and you know where you are going.
Most of the blogs on the internet run on Wordpress, and there are many reasons for that - a big one being it is free plus there are add-ons or they are called plugins that can really make Wordpress do almost anything. But let us not get side tracked here.
First you need a “host” that is a provider who will give you disk space to place your articles inside Wordpress and manage your connection to the internet so that it is alway available to your readers and also they make backups for you of your site.
So how do you choose a good host for your blog?
What Makes A Good Webhost For A Wordpress Blog?
- Price and Monthly cost
- Good Customer Support
- Type Of hosting
There are thousands of WordPress hosting providers out there, it can be a tough task sorting and choosing the best (or the right one for you).
This is one area where you do not want headaches - however in the beginning you do not need an expensive web host because remember your site does not have many visitors.
Later on, as you grow you can move to a faster or dedicated host - and the good news is many will transfer your site for free.
So let's look at the the process of choosing the right WordPress hosting.
I will also recommend a few WordPress hosts that I know work well on Wordpress sites.
Is Traditional (Shared) Web Hosting OK For Wordpress?
This is the most cost effective way to start - because as the name implies you are sharing a computer - or server as they call it with other websites.
Do not worry all the security is in-place so your site is secure - you are just sharing the resources and that is why it is cheaper.
Usually to make things easier, there’s a 1-click installation option you can choose when getting started with your hosting plan.
Just purchase your hosting package, and then with a few clicks your Wordpress site is installed for you.
Shared hosting is the most popular for beginning bloggers as typically they are very budget friendly (with packages starting around $3-$5 per month).
Our Pick for Best Traditional Shared Hosting: Bluehost
Bluehost has instant setup, and a really good money-back guarantee.
Bluehost has an instant setup for Wordpress and a really good money-back guarantee.
Other key Bluehost Features are
- unlimited bandwidth
- unlimited disk space
- unlimited email accounts
- a free domain
- site-building tools
- 24/7 support
- Let’s Encrypt free SSL
- Domain manager
- An automatic resource protection system
- $100 Microsoft Advertising credit
- $100 Google Ads credit
- Google My Business verification support
- 50GB storage
- Free SSL
- Free domain name (for the first year)
- 25 Subdomains allowed
Bluehost is a big player in the web hosting business.
What is more, WordPress.org even recommends Bluehost on their main hosting page.
A basic shared hosting plan from Bluehost starts at $7.99 per month and includes the following: But Bluehost has a special deal for all GetVirtualNow readers starting at just $2.95 per month.
Just make sure to use one of our affiliate links to Bluehost on this page.
Is Managed Wordpress Hosting Worth The Extra Cost For Wordpress Blogs?
If your budget is not too tight and you want a host you can stay and grow with the you may want to consider a Managed WordPress hosting option from the beginning.
Are they worth the extra money?
Well firstly they are going to cost you around $300 per year vs the $100 for the shared hosting option above.
So if money was not an issue - and you have many of the management concerns removed for $200 a year then I would say it is probably a reasonable choice. But if you are on a tight budget then stick with the shared hosting.
But one other advantage to consider is when you grow - then you do not have to go through the hassle of changing hosting companies.These companies specialize in providing hosting solutions for the WordPress platform. This means you can only host WordPress sites with them, and nothing else.
Why this is good is because all their resources are dedicated to your WordPress site to make it better, safer and faster.
What is the Best Managed WordPress Hosting in 2020
Our Pick for Best Managed WordPress Hosting: WP Engine
We highly recommend WP Engine as one of the best long term growth Wordpress hosting companies, and in our opinion really that are the best managed WordPress hosting solution out there.
WP Engine’s support team is focused and dedicated to WordPress which means really good support.
Every new team member goes through an 8 week training program covering all aspects of their support before assisting customers.
WP Engine also boasts one of the best customer to support staff ratios in the industry.
This means you get fast and quality support at all times.
They have a live chat box for instant help when you need it.
But one of the best things is you do not have to worry about backing up your site because it is taken care of automatically on a daily basis.
Plus you can restore your site whenever with a few clicks.
WP Engine plans start at around $25/mo and offer hundreds of features. Below we list some of the main features
- International data centers that have redundancy
- Strong Firewalls
- Extensive malware scanning
- Good Uptime protection
- Unlimited data transfer
- Very Scalable plans
- Local development staging and test sites
- Auto migration options
- Simple One-click staging areas with easy deploy
- Automated backups
- Free CDN and SSL
- Free StudioPress Genesis framework & themes
- Two-factor authentication
- Best of the range hardware
- Page speed performance tools
- Development tools
- Git & SFTP connections
- 24/7/365 support
- And heaps more…
After extensive research, there is a lot of good high end hosting solutions but in our experience is that WP Engine is the best-managed WordPress hosting solution for you. They specialize in WordPress and their support is second to none.
Some of WP Engine customers include Foursquare, ConstantContact and SoundCloud.
I would also note that Automattic (the creators of WordPress) also invested money in WP Engine, which gives them even more credibility.
5. How to Pick your blog theme and why it is important
Now that you have a WordPress hosting account and your Wordpress site setup, you need to choose your WordPress theme.
What is a Wordpress theme?
A WordPress theme is a collection of templates, files, and stylesheets that control the appearance and layout of your WordPress website.
In the beginning Wordpress does have some default themes but you really want to choose a theme you will stick with as your site grows.
While the Wordpress base theme isn’t the greatest, in the beginning it is a good tool and it can be used to get familiar with the appearance editor.
In the theme layout or appearance editor, you can change:
- Site identity – your real business name, logo, and other items like navigation.
- Colors – you can choose what colors for fonts, buttons, blocks, etc.
- Menus – you can manage the placement of your menu navigation
How do I choose the Right Theme for my WordPress blog
- Choose a responsive theme that works well on both desktop, tablet and mobile devices (most of them are).
- Check what themes other sites are using but putting their url into this tool
- Before installing a theme, make sure to check its demo or preview to know what it’s going to look like.
The most popular theme among pro bloggers is Generate Press and that is what I would recommend - it is responsive and that means it works with both mobile, tablets and desktops. It is well supported and updated by the developer regularly.
6. How to Choose your wordpress plugins
WordPress is open-source, and that means many companies have developed software for Wordpress that lets you customize your site in almost endless amount of ways.
These are called WordPress plugins.
These are sets of programs or add-ons that integrate with your website and extend its functionality and feature set.
WordPress has literally thousands of plugins all with different functions.
You can choose everything from email marketing to opt-in forms and SEO tools.
The good thing is such tools make learning how to start a blog much easier, as they perform some essential tasks without you needing any coding knowledge.
However, do not install hundreds of these tools on your blog as they will slow down your site and often cause conflict with each other during updates because they are all written by different plugin providers.
So a key question is which plugins should you add to your blog?
And again I would like to stress keep the plugins to a minimun on your site.
Here is a curated list of the best ones to help you get started. Some are a little more advanced and you will not need them till you get visitors coming to your site.
A lot of people are more used to a classic editor like on Google docs or Microsoft word.
If you do not like the new Gutenberg editor that Wordpress ships, you can reinstall and move back to the Classic Editor.
Easy Table of Contents
Many of your posts will be quite long and this plugin allows you to put a Table of Contents into any page or post.
Tables of Contents are user and SEO friendly for a few reasons: they help to keep users engaged and make it easier to navigate through your page and also improve user experience.
Google measures these and they are one of the many ranking factors - so I view this plug-in as an important one.
Normally I like to go with the free version of a plugin - but you need the full functionality right from the beginning and Elementor is going to be a tool that is fundamental to your blog.
It is simply the best WordPress landing page builder.
It is so popular that on meetup there are groups dedicated to it. I suggest you get the pro version straight away and stick with it - it simply gives you the flexibility to design almost anything with no coding.
Elementor Pro is very inexpensive for what it is and is about $49/year.
GDPR Cookie Consent
Not essential at the beginning.
This is probably a plugin for when you get traffic - but you will want OptinMonster at some stage.
It is simply the best email opt-in plugin on the market. You can get started with OptinMonster for just $9/month.
ShortPixel Image Optimizer
ShortPixel compresses all of your images so that they are smaller files and your pages load faster.
And google says that page speed is one of the many factors they use to rank your site. It is good to get this from the beginning.
This is one of my best liked affiliate marketing tools. ThirstyAffiliates makes your random affiliate links (ugly random numbers, letter strings, etc.) and tidies them up so that they look nice. For example, which one looks nicer to you.
The second one is far more clickable and it leads to much higher conversion rates.
This is one area where you only need to use the free plugins unless you are doing something very specific.
Yoast, doesn’t really need an introduction it was the original SEO plugin. However I my opinion you should also consider SEOPRESS.
Both are good - I find SEO press less commercial and intrusive, it does all that Yoast does but with a cleaner interface.
7. Research How To Make Your Blog Stand Out and Longer Term Content Strategy
Ok so you have your website setup and some basic articles published along with a policies page and an about us page.
You should probably also setup a contact us page - I recommend using contact form7 plugin here is just makes it easy.
Now we need to dig deeper in order to find your special angle or “sub niche”.
You will also have gained more knowledge now because in writing your first 5 articles you can not help but learn.
Start by asking yourself these very important following questions:
--> What can I bring to my readers and this niche?
--> Is there a skill or talent I’m pretty good at?
Also look at your competition and what are they doing that is in demand and you could do better?
What you are looking to do is to make sure your site is not drawn into a sea of look alike competitors and that you have a real point of difference.
If you do not find a way to standout, it will be much harder for you to get traction.
A good way to do this is to exceed your competitors in article quality and helpful infographics.
Some additional ideas are
Develop a unique writing style
Every person is unique. So make your own writing style in your own voice. Even incorporate the way you speak - this is one the easiest ways to develop an individual style.
If you’re naturally funny, add in a little humour throughout your posts.
Do not be afraid to be controversial. This is another way to stand out and often get linked to.
Read specialised copywriting blogs to help you hone your talent.
Practice: If you do a little writing every day then you will improve over time. This is another reason why I also say you should write the first 10-20 articles yourself before you condier outsourcing to a writer.
Do not have a wall of text. Add images, gifs or video to make it interesting for you reader.
Blog posts that have images get more than two times the amount of shares on social media.
Simply put, high quality images increase engagement.
Do not worry if you’re not able to take your own photos. There are many websites like Pixabay and Unsplash allow you to download lots of high quality images free and with Creative Commons licenses.
How to find great content for you blog
Let’s dig into good places and resources to find blog content.
First, start with a few keywords related to your blog. What you are looking to do is come up with major “themes” that will support 20-50 articles for your blog. Subjects, interests, or topics that you know your readers will be interested in.
In the SEO world these are often called silo’s or hubs. What you are going to do is write at least 20 articles on each topic and link them together so that they form a topic centre of expertise.
GoogleBot will then see this as it crawls your site and in time register you as an authority on this subject. This is really important and many newbies waste their first 6 months just writing on anything that interests them or takes their fancy. Do not do this focus on proving you have a real area of expertise.
They then wonder why google is not ranking them. Well it is because the google robot has no idea what your site is about. So again find one of two topic hubs and plan a minimum of 20 articles in each silo - of course some articles will be commercial - that is contain reviews or sell products you can make money others will be informational or how to articles. You need a mix of each.
Also in your hub you will need to plan one piece of pillar content or skyscraper article that you are going to use for link building. (see the next topic)
So first create a keyword topic list for that silo and investigate the difficulty and other metrics like search volume.
Now start doing some research. Here is a list of some of the places you can investigate your keyword.
Put your mind into “investigative reporter” mode. Also look for topics you know will be helpful or solve problems for your readers.
Here are some places to start looking
- Google News
- Press Release Web Sites like prnewswire.com, prweb.com, marketwire.com, businesswire.com
- Twitter (Twitter search for your selected keywords and look at the top tweets)
The next step is to use keyword tools like
Here are other ways to come up with good and engaging content for your blog
- write a review that is much better than your competition of a product or service
- write about a leading company in your industry
- write about a tool that is useful in your niche (online tool, software tool, or a physical tool)
- write about your competitor - sometimes this works really well
- make a top 10 list and get external experts to write a paragraph
8. How to Create Your First Link Building Plan
Your site will not succeed without links - or to be blunt and put it another way - you will not succeed online unless you can get other people to link to your site.
Over time as your site gets more successful it will acquire links naturally but in the beginning you will need to hustle to get some links.
There are two main ways to increase the success of you site -
The result of both of these is that other sites link back to your content on your site and this helps your keywords move up the rankings.
What is guest posting?
Guest blogging, also referred to as “guest posting,” is when you write content for another company's website. Usually guest positing is done for similar blogs within your niche in order to attract traffic back to their website while also linking or referencing from their website back to yours.
Guest blogging is simply one of the best ways to advertise or promote your blog.
Plus it is a way to meet other people in your niche and also to build authority. Importantly it also says to the "googlebot" that your site is important.
Really the same thing is Domain Authority (DA) and it is what tools use to measure the power of your site. That way you can see the results in a numerical form from your outreach campaigns.
Linking building is not easy and many people struggle - but it is a necessary part of online marketing.
How to Find Guest Posting Opportunities?
First try to Find Sites Accepting Guest Posts in Your Niche.
Most bloggers will begin by looking for leaders in their niche. Then maybe try regularly interact with them on social media.
Establishing a relationship first with other successful bloggers will help you speed up the process and get right to the decision maker.
If this is not for you then you will need to implement a repeatable method of reaching out and introducing yourself to these influences in your niche.
Another method is to find a websites is to search “Guest post by [insert name]”.
The reason for this is to locate all the blogs in your niche that have guest posts written for them. Why because, you want all the same links they do.
Examine the sites to determine if they accepts guest posts.
Start by looking at the “Contact Us” and “About Us” pages to see if they mention anything about guest posting guidelines.
Some blogs will have pages labeled as “Guest Posting” or “Write For Us”.
Another way is to make use of google search operators like the examples below.
- site:domain.com “submit a guest post”
- site:domain.com “contribute to an article”
- site:domain.com “submit your article/post”
- site:domain.com “become a contributor”
- site:domain.com “accepting guest posts”
Prepare your approach pitch to the site.
Always personalize your approach to a new high authority site.
- Make sure to spell names correctly
- Do not say “Hi”, “Hey”, or “Dear Webmaster” - you need to personalize your approach and work hard to stand out.
- Remember, this is a blog that is a sucssess you are reaching out to, and you should make them understand you feel special to guest post there FOR FREE. Take the time to make it count.
- Introduce yourself. A short introduction outlining your background plus experience. Keep it short, but powerful.
- State, briefly, why you have the skill write a guest post for them, and name articles and link to on your own blog so they can check put your work.
- If you have guest posted before also link to these to demonstrate you know what you are doing.
- Suggest 3 to 4 post titles so that the editor can choose which he/she wants to review.
- Once you get the go-ahead to submit a guest post contribution, always make sure you deliver one time and on quality.
To even stand out more, send images and/or graphs to be added.
Lastly somewhere in the communication, just check with them how many links you are allowed in your article and if they are do-follow links.
9. How to Monetize your Content
Before we jump in to monetizing content, let us take a few minutes to go over exactly how people make money blogging.
How Do Bloggers Make Money?
It is common when non-internet or affiliate marketing people first hear about bloggers making many thousands of dollars every month, their first reaction is usually along the lines of:
"This must be some kind of scam?”
But the fact is you can and there are many people that publish monthly income reports.
So lets do a quick roundup of the ways to make money used by bloggers who are making 5 and 6-figures per month:
- Affiliate income – This is making money for referring people to affiliate sites of another company - you then earn a small commission typically in the range of 1-10% and it does not cost the customer any extra.
- Advertising – This is growing in popularity and you can earn good money by displaying ads on your site.
- Products & Services – Making money from selling your own products and services - often digital or info products. This usually comes later on in a site's lifecycle
From our own surveys and research, this is the revenue split roughly equal - meaning that overtime to earn high 5 figures per month you will employ all three methods.
How to make money with Affiliate marketing
This is one of the most common income models out there and still one of the most profitable ways today to make money blogging.
Why is affiliate marketing so profitable?
Because there are almost no overheads, no customer service headaches, and no shipping costs.
And if you can scale your blog - then really the sky is the limit as to what you can earn.
It is very easy to get started by signing up for an affiliate program such as the Amazon Associates Program which is the most common way to start for new bloggers.
You can also join Commission Junction, ClickBank, or any of the thousands of other programs out there.
Once you get approved, the next step is to find products or services that seem like a good fit for your blog’s audience and will solve a problem they have. Write articles and reviews on them plus promote them via banner ads on your site.
Once reader clicks on your a link from your site and then makes a purchase, you’re paid a commission.
How to Make Money Blogging With Advertising?
Once you’ve built up a reasonable audience or volume of visitors for your blog you can apply to join add networks.
There are two basic options when making advertising space available on your site:
Selling display ads directly to some companies - this is usually done when you have more experience - or have had real success with a specific product or service.
The most common form is “Renting” your site to add networks like Mediavine
Using an add network like AdThrive is more straightforward and an easier way of making money from your blog.
These add networks take care of everything, and you can then focus growing your site further.
The only thing to be aware of is that your blog needs to generate at least 25,000 visits per month to be eligible to apply for Mediavine.
Running adds is the most passive way possible to make money online. Mediavine is probably your best network to start with.
You can make anywhere from $10-20 per 1000 adds shown.
10. What to Do after creating a blog - Key Next Steps
- Once you get visitors you need to track them - set up Google search console and google analytics.
- As you produce new content submit your blog page to search engines and social media platforms
- Re new your old content so it is always up to date
- Implement on-page Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Or even use a tool like SurferSEO
- Look for new products and services to sell.
- Make sure your site backup is working and you know how to restore your site from a backup
You can see, learning how to start a blog is not too difficult, but you need to consider your motivations and follow a structured method.
Turning your site into a profitable blog money-making business requires a dedicated approach, and constant learning of skills like SEO, Calls to action, email lists, and many other skills.
You can monetize your blog, and you probably should read this post again as you will pick up more information the second time you read it.
Lastly remember to keep focused - keep it simple and above all remember the three key aspects to blogging and making money once you have your site up.
Producing good content
Gaining links to your site.
Do not follow the many shinny objects you will discover on your journey.