Blogging is often pitched to people as a get-rich-quick type of business.
Just find your niche, set up a WordPress blog, and before you know you’ll be sailing the world, or surfing the web on the beach, or traveling to exotic locations! While this all sounds great, it’s not part of life for the average blogger.
The average blogger spends most of their day writing content, building an audience, and trying to make money.
Would I love to sail the world while working on a money-making blog worth hundreds of thousands of dollars? Of course.
But for most, making money blogging is a lot harder than it seems. To really make money with your blog, it takes countless hours of hard work and dedication even to make a couple of bucks blogging. Forget about buying a boat (unless you want to be a HENRY)!
Actually, it takes more than just hard work and dedication to earn money online as a blogger. You also have to know how to make money blogging.
It is not easy, but it is possible.
There are a lot of different ways to start making money as a blogger (which we’ll get into). But I’m also going to share one awesome tip to help you monetize quickly and easily.
That one awesome tip: joining a blogging group.
How to Make Money Blogging
We’ll get to what exactly a blogging group is in just a second. But first, we need to talk about how to start your blog.
There are some things you need to do before anything else. First, know what you want to write about and the target audience you want to reach. Come up with some blog post ideas to help you get started.
Next, decide on what you want to call your blog. You'll need to check the name to see if it's taken by another website. In web language, the domain name becomes part of your website's internet address. The domain name of this website is your money geek. The web address (URL) is https://yourmoneygeek.com. That's how it works.
There are companies that provide free domain registration. Once you find a name you like and that no one is using, you need to find someone to host your website. Your website host provides the infrastructure and internet space where people access your site. Companies like GoDaddy, Google, Amazon Web Services, and BlueHost are examples of web hosting companies. WordPress.org is the easiest, most popular, and, in my mind, the best web site platform on which to build your website. More websites are built on WordPress than any other platform.
If you're reading a blog post on how to make money blogging, you probably already have the blog up and running. That means you probably already knew most of these basics. But I don't like to assume anything, so I at least wanted to include the bare-bones basics.
Ok, with that out of the way, let's get on with the good stuff. I’m going to share six ways bloggers make money by running their blogs the right way.
For someone who wants to learn how to actually make money blogging, it's important to understand these six things.
1. Display Ads
Display ads are exactly what they sound like: the small ads that show up on a website either at the top or bottom of the page as banner ads, off to the side, or within the content.
It’s usually the first thing bloggers do after they learn how to start a blog and get one up and running
Most new bloggers start by using Google Adsense for their display ad needs. This is an easy-to-set-up program where Google is the middleman between your site and the advertiser.
The payouts and RPM with Google Adsense are fairly low. In fact, they are probably the lowest in the industry. Many bloggers make the mistake of signing up for ads before they have any meaningful traffic.
Getting blog traffic should be the first priority. If you don't have traffic, you won't have people clicking on your ads because no one will be there to click in them. That seems like common sense. Yet so many times I've seen bloggers sign up for AdSense as soon as they start blogging.
It clutters up your site. More importantly, it slows down site speed, which is a huge factor in how Google looks at website rankings. So, make getting people to your blog your top priority. Only then should you consider putting ads on the site.
Writing great content that your audience wants to read is the best way to grow traffic.
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is probably the most common term you think of when you think of how to make money online. Pay Flynn from Smart Passive Income has a good definition of affiliate marketing:
“Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting other people’s (or company’s) products. You find a product you like, promote it to others, and earn a piece of the profit for each sale that you make.”
Personally, I have a love-hate relationship with affiliate marketing.
I love the fact that I can get paid by promoting products and services that I like and use. All I have to do is include an affiliate link somewhere in the post. Getting paid to write a review on why I love a product seems like a great revenue model.
However, I hate how competitive and sleazy affiliate marketing can be. Many of the best affiliate programs have a ton of bloggers competing for traffic and payouts. That makes it hard to build a sustainable sales funnel and make enough money for it to be worthwhile. Also, you have bloggers who will promote products just because they are an affiliate, even if they don’t believe in or use the product.
Once again, if no one is visiting your blog, you won't make money blogging. You need traffic. When that happens, remember to stay true to your brand and mission.
3. Online Courses and Webinars
Creating an online course takes a lot of upfront work and effort, but once it’s created and set up, it can be a great form of passive income. Just remember, this is not the Field of Dreams. Just because you built it, doesn’t mean they’ll come.
There are several courses to consider. Create a blogging free guide or a course on search engine optimization (SEO). Do a review of the best web hosting companies. Include affiliate links and discount codes (if available) to the review. Many web hosting companies have affiliate marketing ads you can use. Get creative with it.
Your first online course should be something in which you are an authority; something people want to learn.
Usually, the hardest part of building a successful course is promoting it. To sell online courses, be sure to have a plan to generate some initial sales and earn money from the start. You should start working on your promotion plan before you even start making the course.
Here are some ideas to get your course or webinar out there:
- Facebook ads
- Pinterest ads
- Blogger references
- Press Releases
4. Ebooks and Products
Selling digital products is a great way to make money from your blog. You can sell physical products too. One way to sell physical products is via an Amazon affiliate program. You'll have access to everything sold on Amazon. they provide ad copy, links, and pay a small commission on everything sold via your website. Like Google AdSense, the commissions are very small.
Have I mentioned you need traffic for this to make sense? Yeah, I guess I did a couple of times. To sell digital products (or any product), you need traffic. Without it, you'll be doing a lot of work setting all this up with little return.
Remember, when blogging, you’re creating content all the time. For free! Another strategy for making money online is to take some of your most epic content and create a digital product or ebook out of it. And, of course, get paid for it.
Remember, this has to be content so good that it is worth paying for.
Designing an ebook or product is pretty straightforward. You could pay for software to help you do it, or you could rely on Microsoft Word to do the trick. The most important part of making a product is ensuring it’s full of useful and relevant content.
5. Sponsored Posts
A sponsored blog post is an article you write in partnership with another brand or company. It might be a review, testimonial, or a how-to article. It’s a great way to earn some cash for your blog!
Why would a brand or company pay for sponsored blog posts? As a blogger, you have a targeted audience that wants to hear from you. Brands are willing to pay to get their products and services in front of your readers using your voice.
Similar to affiliate marketing, be sure you are partnering with brands that fit your audience! Sponsored content should fit naturally within your blog.
6. Consulting and Freelance Work
Last, my least favorite way to make money online through your blog: freelancing. Yes, you can even make money writing
Personally, I’m not a huge fan of this type of work because when you are a freelancer, you are trading hours for dollars.
I’d rather spend my time building up my blog, which can hopefully one day produce sustainable passive income rather than giving my time to someone else for a small fee.
I do have two exceptions to this rule:
- If you are building up income to reinvest in your blog, being a freelance writer or consultant can be a good use of time to generate this cash flow
- If you are a full-time blogger already or are treating your blog as a full-time job, often freelance writing and consulting are a part of your business model already
The Best Tip to Make Money Blogging
So that’s the laundry list of ways that you can make money blogging.
Could you execute some of those ideas to get income and profitability on your own?
But my best tip to help you make money blogging faster and easier is to join a blogging group.
Personally, I’m a part of The Money Mix Insiders group.
This group has not only paid for itself and then some since signing up, but it’s helped me increase my traffic, grow my social media presence, and improve my SEO. And it’s taught me how to make money blogging faster than I ever could have on my own.
Below you’ll find the full list of benefits and reasons why joining a blogging group could help you overcome your challenges and make more money.
The Benefits of Joining a Blogging Group
There are countless benefits to joining a blogging group. For someone looking to reach financial independence, like me, the most important benefits were the monetary ones.
I defined monetary benefits as perks that could directly help me make more money (or save on expenses).
Monetary Benefits of The Money Mix Insiders Group
The first and most obvious benefit of joining TMM’s Insiders group is the boost in traffic you will see. This traffic increase comes from two different sources.
First, they feature you in their emails, on their site, and their social media platforms. They’re using their broad reach to drive traffic directly to your site.
But more than that, they also help you implement strategies to increase traffic on your own. Whether it’s through honing your voice, informing you of different channels and sites to promote your content through, or just general tips and tricks, they help you find ways to drive more readers to your site.
Link Building Tools
Let’s get this out of the way: The Money Mix insiders is not solely a link-building circle.
In fact, I’d stick with them even if I got zero link benefits from them.
But, lucky for me (and maybe you), they do help you build links the right way (like guest posting, syndications, and more).
You can learn more about their link building strategies after joining, but as an example, through The Money Mix, fellow bloggers, or other publishers, my links have quadrupled (yes, 4x!) since joining the group a few months ago.
Free Premium Software
We all know there are countless blogging tools out there to help with a variety of needs, like:
- Keyword research
- Link building
- Article optimization
- Site speed
- Headline optimization
- And more…
The Money Mix will give you the script for all the essential tools you need to be successful, but they don’t stop there.
They also give you heavily discounted and even free access to these tools.
Tools that are usually $30, $60, and even $180 a month come for a fraction of the price, or more frequently, they come free.
These tools help me identify my posts with the highest chance of ranking in Google and then give me tips on how to optimize them. Like this one: how to find the best index funds.
Grow and Monetize My Email List
The Money Mix treats everything like a business, and it rubs off on the members of their insider group too.
They treat their email list as a traffic driver to their blog, but also as a separate business that can be grown and monetized. Frankly, they are pros at email marketing.
Since joining the group, my email list has grown from 100 to 1,500+! That’s 15x growth, opening up doors for monetization and also driving traffic to my site.
Free Web Hosting
The Money Mix provides free, high-speed web hosting.
I’m not talking about $3/month Bluehost, either. They offer web hosting that would be valued at $35/month or higher.
This is a direct money-saver but also speeds up your site, which helps with SEO and your overall user-interface.
Plus, you can put the extra money you saved with free hosting towards growing your blog.
Access to Sponsored Posts
This is potentially my favorite benefit of this group. It’s also the most unique.
The Money Mix brings sponsored posts to you!
That’s right; the group actually pays you by negotiating group deals with various brands and companies.
Technically, there is a $180 monthly fee you have to pay to join. But, in 2019, I made more money from the group than I put in. And, already in 2020, I’m on track to do the same.
So not only do you get all the monetary benefits above, but you also get sponsored posts to help offset your monthly fee.
Non-Monetary Benefits of The Money Mix Insiders Group
As if the monetary benefits weren’t enough, there are plenty of other benefits as well that didn’t directly impact my bottom line. However, they do improve my blogging skills and my website.
One-Off Advice and Mentorship
On top of all the benefits above, you get direct access to ask successful bloggers any questions you might have. I’m talking about six-figure pulling, blog selling, and technically-savvy bloggers. The experts who run the group are incredibly knowledgeable, and literally always available to for one-off questions and advice.
I can’t remember the last time I asked a question and didn’t get a response in under 12 hours. Plus, everyone who is a member is the group seems to be an expert in something.
Whether it’s Pinterest, SEO, coding, affiliate programs, site speed, or literally anything related to blogging, someone always has an answer for me.
Would I still be blogging one year after I started if I wasn’t in the Insiders group?
Honestly, I’m not sure.
Blogging is hard. And I feel lost more often than I feel like I know what I’m doing. This group has held me accountable and pointed me in the right direction to help me keep going.
I genuinely like everyone in the group, which is rare!
Everyone is supportive, easy to talk to, and sometimes funny.
That’s worth something, right?!
Summary: Treat Your Blog Like a Business
I will say this group is not for the hobby-blogger. The Money Mix Insiders group is for someone who wants to treat their blog as an online business, grow, and make money fast.
The Money Mix wants people who are in it for the long-run, and bloggers who want to engage and learn ways to make money online.
And if you are in it for the long-run, you shouldn’t have to do it yourself.
Most companies have a board of directors, or at a minimum, advisors. But for some reason, many bloggers work alone and in silos.
I view this group as having my very own board of directors and a group of advisors for my
So, if you want to learn how to make money blogging quickly, my number one tip to you is to join a blogging group today.
Kevin runs the personal finance website Just Start Investing, where he focuses on making investing easy. Just Start Investing has been featured on Business Insider, Forbes, and US News & World Report, among other major publications for his easy-to-follow writing. Check out Just Start Investing to learn the simple strategies to start investing today, as well as ways to optimize your credit cards, banking, and budget.