This is the last post in a series on How to Make Money as a Freelance Blogger:
Finally, you will need to find a way to make money as a freelance blogger. No duh. This is going to require a decision:
- Do you want to make money from your own blog?
- Or do you want to make money writing for other blogs?
- Or both?
Making Money From Your Own Blog
Now that you’ve set up your own blog and have been blogging for some time, how do you monetize it? Is it even possible? Yes, it is, but it is extremely difficult to make a living off your blog alone. You’ll have to do a lot more than one blog – perhaps have several.
But never say never, right? Here are some ways to at least pay half of your rent per month. (This list expands on what I’ve written about monetizing blogs before.)
- Affiliate programs
- Digital products
You have many advertising options for your blog. There’s a whole art & science to optimizing ad payouts, but basically the more in-your-face and relevant the ads, the more likely they will be clicked. As a blogger, you are paid each time a user clicks on an ad. But don’t click on them yourself, or else you will be committing click-fraud and will be banned from that ad network.
This is only possible with a fairly popular blog and a loyal following. Once you reach that level, you may be able to find advertisers interested in sponsoring some of your content for a set period of time. All you’ll need to do is provide proof of your traffic levels and audience demographics.
Using an affiliate program is sort of like earning a commission each time you sell another company’s products. For instance, you could join Amazon.com’s affiliate program and link to various books (which I do fairly frequently). Every time a customer clicks on a link and purchases a book, you will earn a commission.
You could write a useful how-to guide in the form of a PDF ebook and sell that. Or record a song in the form of an MP3 and sell that. Or create an instructional video in the form of a streaming video and sell that. These are all examples of digital products. You don’t need a fancy shopping cart system to sell them either. There are a few ecommerce engines that will handle that for you, though they require some technical knowledge to set up.
If you’ve branded yourself well, or have fictional characters that may look good on a t-shirt or coffee mug, consider merchandising. Blogs with cult followings tend to do well with branded products. And if you have a web comic, even better.
If you can manage to get a cult following, not only could you consider merchandising, but donations as well. Some talented starving artists can get by on donations alone, though it is extremely difficult. I’ve gotten a coffee or three myself, but that’s about it.
Here are some must-read articles and resources on making money from your blog:
ShoeMoney is a well-known professional blogger and internet marketer whose blog occasionally contains tips on internet marketing and profitability.
- The Adsense Check for $132,99497
- Want To Make Money From A Blog? Don’t Try.
- On Making Money Online
- What Do You Consider A Successful Blog?
- Seven Deadly Sins For People Trying to Make Money Online
Entrepreneurs-Journey.com is another well-known professional blogger and internet marketer with tips on internet entrepreneurship.
- How I Make Money Online Part 4 – Blogging
- Is Professional Blogging a Sustainable Business Model?
- If You Can’t Write Words That Sell, You Don’t Make Money
- Is Article Marketing Worth Your Time?
- Making Money From a Website – Is Advertising the Only Solution?
- Does Your Website Make Sense?
- I Made $6549.52 From Blogging in March
- How I Make Money Blogging
- How Bloggers Make Money from Blogs
- How Much Money Do Bloggers Make Blogging?
- 10 Ways to Make Your Blog More Attractive to Advertisers
- A Reality Check About Blogging for Money
Making Money From Writing for Other Blogs
Some freelance bloggers could probably make more money writing for other blogs than trying to monetize their own blog, mostly because they don’t have the skills, experience, or desire to put a lot of effort into monetization techniques. They would rather be writing. If that’s the case with you, then it’s time to hunt for some blogging gigs using these methods:
- Word of Mouth
- Blogging Job Boards
Word of Mouth
This is where your brand, reputation, networking abilities, and social media marketing efforts can pay off. Having a strong network can generate significant returns. If you’re not as comfortable doing the shmoozing thing at parties, do the shmoozing thing on social media sites. But in either case, make sure you always carry business cards – you never know when you’ll run into someone who’s interested in your services.
Blogging Job Boards
There are a ton of sources of freelance writer and blogging jobs out there. If you have your blog and writing samples prepared, start going through these sites. You’ll find that writing gigs can vary from writing blog entries to copywriting to email newsletters to ebooks to standard articles.
- ProBlogger Job Board
- Performancing.com Blogger Jobs
- About.com Freelance Writers Free Forum
- Freelance Writing Jobs
- Online Writing Jobs
- Freelance Switch
- Work at Home Jobs
- All Freelance Writing
Now for a list of must-read articles and resources:
- How to Get Your First Freelance Blogging Gig
- How to Become a Freelance Blog Writer
- Freelance Blogging for Side Income: My Top 10 Tips
- Writing for Freelance Blogging Gigs
- The Secret to Freelance Blogging
I hope this series has been helpful to you. Yea, I know it’s a ton of stuff to read. Just imagine how many worthless articles I had to read to distill these lists. Whew.
If I’ve missed any important articles, please let me know. I’m sure there’s more great stuff out there.
And finally, good luck with your new career as a freelance blogger! Let me know how it goes!
The How to Make Money as a Freelance Blogger series: