Just getting started blogging? Here’s how to make money from blogging right from the start.
When you’re just getting started blogging, you may have your eyes on when and how you’ll be able to start making money. In this post, I’ll share a few different ways that you may want to consider making money from your blog, even if it still is within just the first few months of getting started writing.
There are so many ways to monetize your blog, but if your site has been around for less than 6 months to a year, your traffic is likely not going to be at a level that you’ll be able to qualify for running ads or getting approved for an advertiser network. That’s why you’ll want to be creative for how to monetize your blog from other opportunities that don’t rely on traffic or a large volume of readers. Even just a few dozen readers can result in money-making opportunities if you set them up properly.
Let’s go through a few of these money-making ideas below.
Affiliate marketing is when you sign up to promote a product or service that you use and recommend to your readers. In exchange for promoting a business’ product, you get a small commission if your reader purchases the product.
Affiliate marketing is a great option to monetize your blog from the start, because after you get approved by a few affiliate marketing sites, you can add the special links to your site and start promoting their products. There is a huge range of how much businesses offer for affiliate commission, everywhere from 1% of a sale to 50% of a sale. You can also find affiliate opportunities that offer a flat fee for every referral you send to them.
The most important thing when signing up for products and services to affiliate with is that you need to make sure that the product is relevant and useful for your audience. If you are a blog promoting something completely off base to what your readers are looking for, it can come across as confusing and perhaps even a little salesy.
Do your best to find products and services that you have used, enjoyed using, and are helpful and relevant to what it is you blog about. Your honest review of these products and services can really help your readers, and by getting a small affiliate commission from them, they help you too.
Make sure you disclose your affiliate relationship every time you share a product or service that you may get an affiliate commission for according to the FTC guidelines.
While you may not be able to sign up to become an Amazon affiliate right away when you start a blog, you will qualify for their affiliate network once you reach about 10 published posts on your blog. To become an affiliate for Amazon, all you need to do is apply.
To earn money as an Amazon affiliate, you simply find products that are relevant to your readers and your topic, grab the affiliate links from those pages, then add them as links to your blog posts. You’ll make money every time someone clicks your link then purchases something within 24 hours of clicking that link. The person doesn’t even have to purchase the items that you are linking to. You’ll get a commission for every item that they buy regardless of what you’ve linked to.
Something to be aware of with the Amazon affiliate program is that different categories of products have different percentages of affiliate commission. You can find the full commission payout by category and percentage by clicking here.
When it comes to sharing Amazon affiliate links (or any affiliate links), you’ll want to make sure you understand the terms for which you can share your affiliate links. Amazon allows you to share your affiliate links on your blog or website and social media pages, but you may not share them in email or in PDF’s. See the full list of rules on Amazon’s affiliate program.
As I mentioned above, be sure to disclose on any blog post or page on your website that you have a relationship with Amazon and may receive a commission for recommending products on your website.
After you have established some of the foundation content on your blog, you could consider writing and selling an ebook on your topic. Although readers can find a lot of information and content on your site for free, some people like the ease of being able to buy a book and have all the information they need in one place. They’ll be able to reference it now and later if they need to.
You might think that offering an ebook with similar information on your site is repetitive, but convenience sells and people are always looking for ways to streamline how they access information. If you can create an ebook on a specific topic that helps your readers solve ONE problem related to your niche, you’re likely to make some money from your blog this way.
Aren’t sure what to write about? Ask your readers! Send out an email to your newsletter list and ask what problems your readers might need to solve. Gather blog posts you have already written on the topic, add in more in depth information, and package it up in a PDF to sell.
Sell Digital Products
In addition to or instead of selling ebooks, you might consider selling digital products. If your niche isn’t translated to ebooks very well, digital products might be a better or different option for you to monetize your blog.
Some great digital products to sell are: audio recordings, audio lessons, lessons on how to make certain projects or crafts, worksheets, cookbooks, games, photo presets, templates for projects. The opportunities for digital products are endless – if you have seen something similar online, you know it’s possible and worthy of creating and selling.
I love using Gumroad.com to sell my digital products. You can use their free version or they have a pro version for only $10 per month. To get more ideas on digital products and ideas for what you can sell, check out Discover Gumroad.
Sell Physical Products
If your blog is better suited to selling physical products, this is another great way to monetize your blog from the beginning. This type of product works best if you are in the visual arts, teach anything related to crafting or building, or tools that you can sell to customers that will help them with something related to your niche.
Artists can sell prints, mugs, and even get clothes made out of images of their artwork. If you teach pottery on your blog, you could sell your own pieces at a premium rate from your website. You could also sell kits of materials and tools that people could use to replicate what it is that you share on your blog.
Publish Sponsored Posts
While it may be easier to get set up with sponsored posts when you’re more established as a blog, you may be able to find the right companies and brands to work with when you’re getting started. You write a sponsored content to promote products and services in exchange for a commission.
With sponsored posts, a company or brand will reach out to you with ideas for how they’d like their product or service to be shared online. It’s your job to come up with content, images, and maybe a review of a product to help paint this product in a positive light, so as to introduce your readers to this product. In exchange for a post, you will be paid a commission that you determine with the sponsoring company.
Before writing any sponsored content for any brand, I highly recommend getting the terms in writing for what is expected of you, who the final content and imagery belongs to, and what you can do with any products that have been sent to you. You also need to know the rate you can be expected to be paid up front. All these details should be worked out before you ever start work for sponsored work.
Create a Product or Course
If you haven’t been blogging long enough to develop a relationship with an advertising network to make money, you might also consider making money by creating a product or course to sell your expertise.
People are happy to pay for information these days on various niches and topics. I’ve created many products and courses over the years and have made a lot of money packaging up what I know and selling it to my readers.
The most important thing to know about creating a product or course is what problem you’re helping someone solve. Make sure what you create is something that people are asking for and actually want to buy. Get feedback and make iterations to make your products and courses better and better over time.
Some examples of products you could create are kits, how-to tutorials, workbooks, cooking lessons, or printables.
Creating a course is a little more involved and can take multiple lessons and lectures. It could come in many forms, like video, audio, written lessons, and worksheets. The format doesn’t matter as much as helping someone to solve a problem or achieve a goal.
When you’re starting your blog, you may consider selling services to help you make money right away. Services like done-for-you offerings, like setting up websites, editing or creating imagery for others are helpful to many folks who are looking for those specific services.
When it comes to teaching online through your blog, remember that whatever it is you’re teaching can usually be created into a service for your readers. If you teach house cleaning techniques, you can set up a service that will create a master House Cleaning document that’s specific to how many rooms someone has, what tools they need and where to find them, and the frequency each room needs tidying.
Get creative with ideas for services as they relate to your niche to help you monetize your blog and website. Make sure that whatever it is that you’re selling, that it’s relevant to your niche and solves a problem that your readers may be facing.
I hope that if you’re just getting started with your blog that some of these ideas will inspire you to get monetizing early. After you have created some foundational content for your site and have some readers, don’t be afraid to start making money from it. Try one of these simple ways to get started monetizing your blog early.