6 Steps to Make Money Blogging – A Practical Guide for Beginners
Let’s assume you’ve done a little research, kicked around a few ideas in your head and you’re ready to enter the world of blogging. But you don’t want to write just any blog, no, you have bigger plans. You want to understand how to make money blogging even as a beginner.
You’re not alone in your desire to earn money from a blog. According to GrowthBadger, two–thirds of bloggers surveyed said their main motivation was to make money. But learning how to make money blogging for beginners can be a little tricky.
As a beginner blogger, you may be tempted to think making money blogging will happen overnight. We hate to burst your bubble so soon, but it’s important to understand that it’s a marathon and not a sprint. Building a blog – and one that makes money – takes time and consistency. However, there are steps you can take in the beginning to get you on the path to profit sooner.
How to Prepare to Make Money Blogging
We know you’re ready to jump in and start earning money today. But before you can go full throttle, you have to get a few basics with your blog down.
Secure Your Site
First, before you make money blogging, you need to have a blog setup! It sounds so simple, but this is a step that can stop you in your tracks before you even start. Setting up a blog can be tedious and time-consuming, but once you get your domain secured and your site set up, then you’ll be all set.
You can purchase your name yourself, set up a hosting company (we recommend BlueHost), and design your site yourself. The great part about going this route is it requires very little investment and you can begin your blogging adventure right away.
Define Your Niche
Blogging isn’t an area where you want to be the Jack of All Trades. Your site will be more successful if you can define your niche. Are you having a hard time deciding which topics you will focus on? Try these techniques:
- What interests you?
- Is there a subject you are particularly knowledgeable in?
- Is there something your friends and family tell you you’re really good at doing?
- Is there a topic you could talk about for days?
You can also approach your blog with big ideas and then narrow it down. For instance, think of broad topics you are interested in such as lifestyle, fitness, finances, animals, parenting, sports, travel – you get the idea. Then once you have a broad topic that interests you, you can narrow it down.
Let’s say you decide to focus on animals and you realize you have a heart for rescuing feral cats. A blog about properly working with these cats and the resources available could be just the niche you need. All it takes is a little brainstorming and you’ll soon have a niche. It will help you as you develop your site and will become more important as you monetize your blog.
Produce Quality Content
Whether you’re a beginner blogger or a seasoned blogging pro, you have to create quality content to make money. But what exactly does this mean? Quality content refers to blog posts that are:
- Not plagiarized. Make sure all work is your own and never copy anyone else’s work.
- Structured. Use headers and subheaders to break up your content and make it easier for your reader to follow.
- Correct in both spelling and grammar. You don’t have to use fancy words but your grammar and spelling should be free from errors. You can use free sites such as Grammarly or Hemingway App to help you with this process.
- Easy to read. A blog doesn’t have to sound like a college dissertation!
- Creating value for your readers. It’s important to focus on producing content your reader wants, and not just what is only good for your wallet.
- Your readers want to hear from you regularly, and consistency in posting is the best way to build loyalty.
As you grow in confidence with your blog, you can begin to focus on concepts such as Search Engine Optimization (SEO). But for beginners, it’s important to get the basics of blogging down and then build on your foundation.
Grow Your Website Traffic
If the only readers of your blog happen to be your mom and your spouse, then you might not have the best luck monetizing your blog. However, there are practical ways you can grow your website traffic, which is what ultimately leads to more chances to make money blogging.
There are tons of resources for growing traffic on your blog – a simple Google search and you’ll quickly realize how many opinions there are on this subject. There are best practices, though, and we’ll highlight a few for your consideration:
- Get social! Start growing your blog by sharing as much of your content as possible through social channels. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and even LinkedIn, are great places to share your content.
- Facebook ads. Purchasing Facebook Ads can increase your traffic to your blog.
- Build up your email subscriber list. Not only will this create engagement, but your readers can easily share your information.
- Make sure your site is mobile and tablet friendly. The simple fact is, more people are using smartphones and tablets to read content and make purchases. The easier your site is to navigate, the more engaged your readers will be.
Start Building Your Email List
From the moment you create your blog, finding a way to capture the email addresses of your readers can become one of the most valuable tools in your blogging toolbox. Not only can you use an email list to connect with your readers through newsletters or notifications, but eventually you can use it to help you with monetizing.
We’re big fans of ConvertKit! Bobby’s used it to grow his email list since the beginning.
How to Make Money Blogging for Beginners
Let’s get into the heart of why you’re here. You want to know how you can start earning money from your blog, even if you’re a newbie to the blogging world. Here are 6 ideas for you to explore to start earning money. The best part? These are all things you can start doing right away once you set up your blog and get your content posted.
Display ads are one of the most popular ways a site can earn money. Display ads are when you allow companies to advertise on your site. These ads allow you to earn money in one of two ways:
- CPC (cost–per–click): Get paid based on the number of people who click on your ad
- CPM (cost–per–impressions): Get paid based on the number of views an ad gets on your site
There are several display ad networks but many of them require a certain amount of monthly page views on your site to be eligible. But for beginners, Google AdSense is one of the easiest ways to get started with display ads because the page view requirement is minimum.
A word of caution — you won’t get rich off of display ads most likely, but they are an easy way for beginner bloggers to earn money. They can also slow down your site speed if you’re not careful, so it’s important to continue to monitor how display ads are impacting your site.
Create Digital Products
Digital products come in all shapes and sizes. These are items your readers can instantly download off your site after paying whatever amount you designate. Popular digital products include e-books, guides, checklists, templates, and coloring pages. You can sell photographs, documents, videos, and how–to courses – you’re only limited by your imagination. Remember our feral cat blog example? You could create a guide to the proper feeding of feral cats and sell it on your site, for instance.
Digital products are a perfect complement to almost any blog niche. Your readers are likely looking for information that is both helpful or keeps them organized. And you can set your digital products up right away on your site, making it a perfect choice for beginner bloggers.
Sell Your Own Products
Digital products are a fantastic source of revenue for a blog, but you can also sell your own products. A blog is an excellent way to showcase a variety of products. Whether it’s handmade jewelry, candles, soaps, t-shirts, decals, nutritional products, clothing, or crafts. If you can make it, then you can sell it on your site.
If you choose to sell digital products, your own products, or a mixture of both, your email distribution list is an ideal way to announce to your readers when you have new products.
Affiliate income is one of the simplest — and most lucrative — ways to earn money on a blog. Affiliate marketing is selling someone else’s product and receiving a commission on the sale when it’s purchased through your site. You can work with companies, other bloggers, and influencers or brands.
The best way to get started with affiliate programs is to sign up with networks specializing in affiliate sales. These networks will give you all the instructions you need on how to place links on your site. Here are a few of the bigger networks:
As with all things in the blogging world, affiliate marketing is more than slapping a link on your site and calling it a day. You want to be careful how links and ads are placed — nothing is a bigger turnoff than feeling like you’re getting spammed with ads. You’ll also want to carefully consider what products you’re offering. Being an affiliate should feel authentic to you and your readers.
Sponsored posts for blogs seem to be getting more popular by the day. A sponsored post is when someone pays you to feature them or their product on your site. It’s different from affiliate sales because you have to actually promote a product to get paid. The important point to remember about sponsored posts is you want it to be authentic. It should be a product you would naturally support. Your readers will know if you work with a brand or product that doesn’t represent any of your values or fit with your content.
Michelle Schroeder-Gardner and Alexis Schroeder are two bloggers that make a legit ton of money through sponsored posts. Their course, Making Sense of Sponsored Posts , teaches other bloggers their steps to success.
Sponsored posts can be very lucrative. Not only can you grow your income, but you can help connect your audience to products you love and want to share.
You can work directly with a company or through a marketing manager. Some companies help facilitate sponsorships as well. Here are a few sites where you can sign up to partner with brands:
These are only a few of the many companies dedicated to helping you connect with brands. Overall, sponsored posts can be a great way to get started making money blogging.
Perhaps you love writing blogs so much you would be willing to write for other websites. Or maybe you have mad photography or graphic design skills and you think your work is decent enough to be paid. Your blog is a perfect vessel to showcase your services and your portfolio.
Adding freelance services to your site is an immediate way to promote yourself and potentially earn money from your blog. Not to mention how freelancing can become a serious side hustle (or career!).
Knowing how to make money blogging for beginners doesn’t have to be an elusive, mysterious process. You simply need to focus your efforts on building great content and then incorporate these 6 ideas into your site.
Once your site begins to grow, you can turn your attention to other ideas for income such as designing and selling your own courses and focusing on SEO and keyword-rich topics for organic growth. Perhaps you can learn to work with ClickFunnels and Google Ads. There are so many ideas for making money with a blog, you just have to pick a place to start!