Every day, I come across people who find it difficult to believe that you can make money blogging.
If many people still doubt the possibility of making a career out of blogging, I totally understand. This is because I had my own moments of doubt too before I started making money as a blogger.
I started with a freely hosted blog, which I kept as an idea bank. I would post random stuff: politics, religion, poetry, and other subjects that appealed to me.
At that time, the idea of monetizing my blog wasn’t even in my head – and that was largely due to my naivety.
However, after a few months into blogging, my whole view about blogging had completely changed. I had read a lot about how successful Nigerian bloggers like Linda Ikeji, Uche Eze, Bamidele Onibalusi, Japheth Omojuwa, and Jide Ogunsanya are making a killing through blogging.
So I got fired up.
I wanted to start making money as a blogger. But, I was completely lost because I didn’t know where to start from.
At the same time, I suffered from information overload. There was too much information right there on the internet. So the more I tried to start, the more I found myself being held back.
I also suffered from procrastination and self-doubt. “Maybe this whole thing isn’t just meant for me,” I told myself on several occasions.
This continued for several months until I finally made my first online income. The motivation came after I enrolled in a masterclass a friend launched.
To cut the long story, I have been making pretty modest earnings through blogging and that’s what I’ll share with you in this chapter.
The Top 7 Ways to Make Money Blogging
One interesting thing about blogging is that it offers diverse means of making money. Therefore, whether you’re a newbie or a blogging veteran, you can always leverage one or two monetization strategies to increase your blogging profits.
However, it is instructive to know that you can only make money as a blogger
when you sell a product or offer a service. Anything apart from these two options often has ‘scam’ written all over.
The monetization strategy you would offer depends on several factors. They include your skillsets or core competencies, the amount of engagement your blog has, and the amount of traffic your blog generates in terms of blog visitors.
Here are the top 7 ways you can make money as a blogger.
1. Freelance Writing
The term freelance writing is often confused for writing for free by many people. Whereas, freelance writing simply refers to the act of writing on a short-term basis for other people and getting paid in return.
You are a freelancer because you’re not tied to a company or a single client. You can, however, write for your client based on contract, which may include duration or volume.
What this means is that you can reach an agreement with a client that you will write for them for a month or that you will write 100 articles for them within a span of 3 months.
Your client could also be a one-off client who needs a one-time project. The options are quite flexible and that’s what makes it interesting.
Freelance writing is the easiest way to make money as a blogger because you’ll always find enough work to do.
The reason is not far-fetched: there’s a huge demand for freelance writers since many companies now outsource content writing.
Come to think of this, over 2 million blog posts are published every day. This doesn’t include other forms of write-ups such as white papers, case studies, email newsletters, web page contents, and eBooks.
Have you ever paused to know who are those writing those contents? Most of these contents are written by freelance writers- people like you and me.
Personally, I’ve worked with more than 50 clients from different parts of the world. My Nigerian clients pay me in, Naira, our local currency, while the foreign clients pay in foreign currency.
This is one of the biggest advantages of freelance writing. If you’re a freelance writer, a good one at that, you will always smile to the bank. Freelance writers like Bamidele Onibalusi make an upward of 5-figures (in foreign currency) monthly. Do you know what that converts to?
It also offers flexibility as you can set your rates and working hours, and decide how to charge – per word or per project. Lastly, you have the opportunity to leverage what you know by choosing a niche.
If you’re an accountant by certification, you will excel in the financial writing and business writing niche. But this doesn’t mean you can’t write on other niches. You only need to make in-depth research to make your write-up top-notch.
2. Promote Affiliate Products
Affiliate marketing is a very profitable way of making money as a blogger. It involves promoting other people’s products or services for a commission.
This model works in a very simple way. Somebody creates a product and partners with other individuals (affiliates) to market his product. Once an affiliate sells a product to a buyer, he gets a commission.
To become a successful affiliate, you need to identify the best (most profitable) products to promote. You will able to join an affiliate program from the product’s main website or from an affiliate platform like Commission Junction (CJ).
Check through the lists of products and apply to become an affiliate for anyone you’re interested in. Please note that your request could either be approved or rejected.
If disapproved, moved onto the next product but if approved, you will be given a unique link for each of the products you’ve been approved for.
These links contain tracking codes that allow them to know where a sale originates. It is this link that you will then start promoting. You could insert an affiliate link in your blog content and banners, or send them as emails to your newsletter subscribers.
Most affiliate platforms require you to reach a minimum pay-out before they can release your affiliate commissions. For example, if your minimum affiliate pay-out is $100, you will need to sell products whose commission exceed or amount to $100 before you can be paid. This is only a strategy to make you work harder.
The more affiliate products that are bought through your link, the more money you’ll make. However, it is important to mention that becoming a successful affiliate marketer requires your ability to write actionable copies that psychologically stimulate your blog readers to buy the products.
In affiliate marketing, there’s really no limit to a number of products you can promote. However, such products must be relevant to your blog and be helpful to your readers.
Again, if you’re looking to increase your profits as an affiliate marketer, you should consider developing a niche site.
Publishing product reviews is another great way to profit from affiliate products. All you need to do is register as an affiliate for the products you’re reviewing. Note that this isn’t a sales copy, it’s an honest review of products you’ve either used, tested, or have made a detailed research on.
To register as an affiliate for any product directly from the website, simply look for the affiliate program link. This is usually found in one of the bottom menus of the website.
3. Create Your Own Products
A product is anything that brings value to its users. It could be a physical or digital product, as long as people derive benefit from it.
For example, this eBook is one of my products and I decided to sell it because it has value. Note the keyword here, “value.”
As a blogger, you can make a lot of money through creating your own products. If you could make so much money marketing other peoples’ products for a commission, why not create your own products and take all the money?
The advantage of selling your own products is that you have full control because you’re in charge. Whereas in affiliate marketing, you’re at the mercy of the product owners and the affiliate platform you’re using. They determine the terms and conditions and you don’t really have a say.
None of these will happen if you’re the owner of the product.
As a blog owner, you can sell both physical and digital products. If you’re a fashion blogger, for example, you will definitely talk about the latest designers, fashion exhibitions, how to dress and the likes.
In the midst of doing all these, you can promote your fashion store if you have one. By creating valuable content about fashion on your blog, your readers already see you as an authority in that niche.
Therefore, if you say that you have a hot product they will like, they won’t hesitate to patronize you because they now trust your judgment.
Similarly, if you have a blog on agriculture, using your blog to sell your livestock animals and animal feeds is a good idea. If you have at least 1000 daily blog visitors and you market your products to them, you will still be able to make a few decent sales.
On the other hand, digital products are also hot in demand. Digital products you could create include information products such as online courses and eBooks. Others are software, video courses, and podcasts. You could sell all these products on your website or leverage digital platforms.
The beautiful thing is that you will continue making money from such products as long as they’re still relevant. Remember, you can never run out of stock selling digital products.
4. Email Marketing
Email marketing is that branch of internet marketing that has to do with using email to promote products and services. The opportunities in this model are quite diverse and the income potential is high.
It is one of the most effective ways for connecting with your leads, nurture them, and convert them into long-term customers. This is because it helps you to develop direct relationships with your customers.
If you have an email list, you can easily sell your products or services. You can also work for small businesses by helping them to write email sequences using
If they already have a list, that makes your job easier. But, if they don’t have an email list, it means that you can make more money by offering to help them build an email list.
5. Offer Digital Services
Any standard blog should have a ‘services’ page or ‘hire me’ page. That’s where you’d state all the services you’re offering.
If you have a blog that provides value, it should be enough to convince your prospective clients to patronize you. Your blog primarily serves as social proof to your prospective clients and it gives them the feeling that you can replicate the same quality for them.
Your service page must be clear and straightforward. Your prospective client must be able to understand the value you can bring to their business when they use your services.
From experience, there isn’t any hard and fast rule for creating a service page on your website. You can check a few popular blogs in your niche for some inspiration.
Some in-demand services that you could offer your clients are UX design, web development, coaching & consulting, SEO audit, social media marketing, link building, brand marketing, image editing, video animation, website fixes, mobile app development among others.
However, if you lack any of these skills, you can start learning on the job and offer them to your clients in future.
6. Sell Advert Spaces
Does your blog get tons of traffic on a daily basis? Then selling advert spaces can give you a steady flow of income.
Some of the top earning blogs in Nigeria sell advert spaces on their blogs and they make an upward of 6-figures on a monthly basis through advert placements alone.
Look at blogs such as Linda Ikeji’s blog, Bella Naija, Sisi Yemmie, among others. You will see how they promote products for some top Nigerian brands. And that’s cool money for them every month.
An advert space could be in form of banner ads, pay per click ads, private advertising, advert widgets, cost per mile advertising, and many more.
But, you will never be able to make money through advertising if your blog doesn’t have enough traffic and engagement. Companies want value for their money in terms of engagement to their websites and more sales.
Another example is Nairaland that has close to 2 million members and which generates thousands of unique visitors daily. There’s no doubt that advertising is their major source of income.
How much do you think Nairaland will make through adverts in a month? Again, how much exposure do you think the businesses that advertise on Nairaland will gain every day? This makes it a win-win situation for all the parties involved.
You can also build your site to this level if you wish to maximize your advertising profits. All it takes is putting lots of valuable contents on your blog and then driving massive traffic to it. In fact, you have to make your blog the new buzz in town.
Once your blog starts to gain some popularity, individuals and businesses will start approaching you for an opportunity to advertise their brands.
Remember that every business wants to have an online presence to maximize their profits.
7. Buy and Sell Websites
If you’re an entrepreneur, you should know that buying and selling businesses is also a business. The same thing works for blogging. You can sell off your website and invest the money in another business.
Recently, a Nigerian blogger sold his niche site for a whopping $280,000 (Two Hundred and Eighty Thousand US Dollars). Yes, you heard that right! Moreover, that happened when the dollar rose to N470 earlier this year.
Please do the math yourself.
This is straight outta Nigeria, no scam. Just some cool money from blogging. In fact, it was a group of US investors that acquired the blog. I’m saying this just to let you know that blogging is big business in the advanced world.
But, here, people still argue whether it’s a profession or not. Call yourself a blogger and people will start looking at you like one lazy brat who doesn’t have an ambition. Well, that’s just by the way.
Honestly, this didn’t happen out of the blues. The site was already making between $5,000 to $10,000 in monthly revenue, and ranking high on Google’s search engine.
The basic requirements to sell your website for a record fee are consistent income and keyword ranking. In other words, you must be making money already or else your blog will not be priced well.
If you want to sell your website, there are startups, which help to connect sellers and buyers. Examples of sites where you can sell your website are Flippa and Empire Flipper.
However, you can do a manual transfer if you don’t wish to use any of these platforms. But I would advise you to create a documented agreement so that you don’t run into any legal problem in future.
How To Multiply Your Blogging Income
To stand a chance of making money through blogging at all, or maximizing your blog profits, here are the 5 things you should be doing.
1. Treat Blogging as a Real Business
As a blogger, you’re also an entrepreneur because you want to make money. Chances are you won’t make money blogging if you don’t have a business mindset.
Every Tom, Dick, and Harry might view blogging as pastime or hobby, but to you, it is a business. If you’re really serious about making lots of money, I’ll advise you to form a team and rent a small office (or co-working space) if you can afford it.
The reasons are not far-fetched: the entire job becomes easier because you can get a lot more done in a short period. This improves your output and increases your ROI.
2. Choose a Profitable Niche
Choosing a profitable niche allows you to maximize your blogging earnings. However, you must be able to dominate your niche to earn big figures.
Now, you might be wondering how possible it is to dominate your niche when you’re just starting your blog. Let me tell you a little secret about how you can become a master in any chosen niche.
Buy 3 bestselling books in your niche and read them page by page. Then read lots of blog posts written by the thought leaders of your industry.
By the time you add your own knowledge to what you’ve learnt over time and serve the content to your audience, you’ll be seen as an authority in your niche.
This works perfectly. Trust me.
3. Create Valuable Content
The only reason you can turn readers to buyers is when they can trust your judgment. And you can only earn this trust when you publish valuable content on your blog all the time.
Before writing a blog post, ask yourself if it can help your readers solve a problem. Once your blog visitors see your blog as a source of reliable information, they can also trust you when you recommend any product.
4. Promote Your Blog
There’s no doubt that selling online requires a huge amount of targeted traffic. Please note that ordinary traffic doesn’t bring you any money; your ability to convert your traffic to leads does.
Apart from optimizing your blog for search engines, you also need to promote your blog on different platforms vigorously. Google AdWords, guest posting, link building, blog post syndication, social media, and adverts are effective strategies to leverage.
5. Build an Email List
If you’ve been blogging for some time, you’d have heard that the money is in the list. What this means is that building an email list allows you to maximize your blog profits more than any other means.
The reason is not far-fetched: emails have higher conversion rate, bigger engagements, and ultimately, emails generate a higher Return on Investments (ROI). So start growing your list today.
Making money as a blogger is quite achievable if you’re willing to work the talk. While there are numerous other means, the seven listed here will be sufficient to make a decent income for now.
Making money as a blogger is quite achievable if you’re willing to work the talk. While there are numerous other means, the seven listed here will be sufficient to make a decent income.
Again, your ability to multiply your blogging income depends on 5 things. They are: treating your blog as a real business, choosing a profitable niche, creating valuable content, promoting your blog, and building a list.
Share your thoughts
How did you make your first blogging income? What other strategies have you used to make money as a blogger? Kindly share your thoughts with us.
P.S: To learn how to create a blog, click this link now.
Author: Hafiz Akinde
Hafiz is a Freelance Writer and Content Marketing Strategist. He helps entrepreneurs and corporate brands to grow their businesses with content marketing strategies that work.