Are you thinking about starting a profitable blog but wondering: how do bloggers make money?! It can be really surprising to wrap our minds around the fact that bloggers can actually make GREAT money online!

By the way, if you’re wondering how MUCH bloggers can make, check out my post here. I’ll give you a hint, these bloggers all make OVER $5000/month!!

There’s ONE thing all successful bloggers with killer monetization strategies have in common:

BLOG TRAFFIC!

It’s not possible to monetize a blog and create a full-time income without first bringing in traffic. And bloggers don’t need a ton of traffic as you’ll see when we get into the ways bloggers make money.

If you’re thinking about starting a blog to make money, traffic is the number one thing you’ll need to focus on.

In order to get traffic, you need LOTS of good quality, helpful content.

So, basically, making money blogging boils down to having quality content.

Keeping that in mind, there are a couple main ways bloggers make money, and we’re going to get into that now!

1. Good Old-Fashioned Ads

We’ve all seen ads across people’s websites! You may see them in the banner section or along the sidebar, or even smack in the middle of someone’s blog post.

Although revenue from ads is becoming a little less popular, there are still TONS of bloggers who use them.

But how do bloggers make money from ads? Well, there are a few ways:

COST PER CLICK:

Cost per click (CPC) is when a visitor stumbles across your site, views the ad and actually clicks on it. 

You’re paid a set price based on every click. This is can be anywhere from a few cents up to a few dollars depending on the advertiser and how “desirable” your website is for potential advertisers!

Bloggers using this method (Google Adsense) can expect to have a 1-3% click through rate: meaning for every 100 visitors, 1-3 of them will click on the ad.

Most small-mid sized bloggers can make anywhere from a few cents to a few dollars per click.

If we split it down the middle and say a blogger has a 2% click through rate, that means her or she COULD potentially make $20 per 1000 pageviews.

COST PER THOUSAND VIEWS:

Cost per thousand views (CPM) is when an advertiser pays a certain amount to you depending on how many impressions their ad gets from your website.

The lead doesn’t actually have to click the ad for you to get paid. The advertiser is simply paying for the space on your website like a bulletin board post.

Bloggers with CPM models may be charging anywhere from 20 cents up to $100 or $200 depending on their niche, and how well defined the audience is.

COST PER ACTION:

Cost per action (CPA) means the blogger is only paid when the lead clicks AND performs an action.

The “action” could be signing up for an email list, starting a free trial or actually purchasing a product.

This usually falls into the “affiliate category”. Think of Amazon. When you sign up to be an affiliate with Amazon, you’re creating ads or links on your website and Amazon will only pay if the lead clicks you link AND purchases something from the website.

Advertising this way can take more time, but the pay per action tends to be a little higher than if you were using traditional CPC models.

2. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is, “…a marketing arrangement by which an online retailer pays commission to an external website for traffic or sales generated from its referrals.”.

Thank you dictionary.com!

Basically, the advertiser pays the blogger based on the lead taking action and actually purchasing a product or service.

Amazon is a great example of affiliate marketing and it’s the website most bloggers start out with. There are tons of other affiliate marketing opportunities including:

It’s safe to assume that most major websites/brands will have affiliate opportunities for bloggers which makes it a great option for bloggers in ANY niche.

Although it sounds really similar to ads, affiliate marketing normally brings in a higher commission and bloggers can build relationships with affiliate marketers to run promotions or do sponsored posts.

Affiliate marketing is still super popular among bloggers because they can be strategic, intentional, and focused with an affiliate strategy.

How do bloggers make money using affiliate marketing?

Bloggers can get really creative with affiliates! Here are some ideas:

  • place ads on their website
  • include affiliate links in blog posts
  • write a sponsored post
  • send out a promotion email to their subscribers
  • make ads on Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook

I use affiliate marketing on my blog to promote things ONLY related to blogging and building an online business. I work with hosting platforms, WordPress theme creators, e-mail automation software, and stock photo companies for for my affiliate advertising.

3. Sponsored + Guest Posts

Using sponsored and/or guest posting is a great way for bloggers to make money.

Sponsored posts is when a blogger writes a post or review for a product and is paid a set amount for that article. The pay is usually determined by how many pageviews (traffic) the site has and how large the social media following is.

Bloggers may charge anywhere from $50-$1000 (or even more!) per post. It all depends on how large of an audience the advertiser will be able to reach through that post.

Guest Posting is when a blogger charges another blogger or advertiser to write their own post and have it featured on the website.

This is a win-win for both parties! The blogger gets paid and gets more content on their site, and the person writing the post gets exposure.

The cost for guest posting is more arbitrary.

Bloggers can charge literally anything they want for guest posting because the value of a guest post is determined by the poster.

You may have a fitness blog with only 1000 subscribers (I say “only 1000” compared to mega bloggers, but 1000 is INCREDIBLE!) but you may have a super engaged social media following, high open rates on your emails and a low bounce rate.

Or, you may be focused on a very specific niche that other bloggers want to target as well.

These scenarios allow you to charge more for guest posting for people who would get a ton of value being featured on your website.

4. Selling Digital Products

Selling products is one of the BEST ways bloggers can make money online.

Why? Well for starters, if you’re a blogger selling digital products, you get to keep 100% of the profit. No commissions, no splits, and no need to sell “real estate” space on your blog.

Secondly, selling products is one of the best ways bloggers can monetize a small audience.

Some bloggers can have 5 (and even 6) figure launches with a list of under 1000 subscribers.

Of course this take a lot of work building an engaged and loyal audience! It won’t happen overnight, but it WILL happen faster than getting 5 cents per click on a Google ad 😉

So what can bloggers sell online? Here are some examples:

  • eBook
  • printables
  • webinar
  • course
  • case study
  • services
  • coaching/mentoring
  • templates

Bloggers can create and sell ANYTHING that brings value to their audience! It’s that simple.

The key is to be really intentional about building a targeted, niche-specific audience who will be interested in buying products related to the blog.

I hope this helped you learn a bit more about how bloggers make money. Are you a new blogger trying to make money? Do you have some extra tips or strategies?

Are you convinced that you’re ready to start blogging? LET’S DO IT!

I’d love to hear from you! Leave your comments below 🙂

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