While there are now millions of blogs online, a good majority of the bloggers still use their blogs simply as a means of expressing themselves. However, there are those that make a nice income that lets them live the kind of life they want without having a “job”. Casual bloggers may feel that earning that kind of income from their blog is out of their league. While it’s true that those who earn hefty incomes are few and far between, there are plenty who earn a little on the side to help ends meet.
Almost all of those bloggers who are wildly successful and living that blogging dream follow a few of the same rules and these are the same rules you should apply to your blog if you want to earn money from it. If you’re like most bloggers you started your blog hot-n-heavy. You were dedicated to it and posted on it frequently, right? But chances are that that fire soon began to die and it’s slowly sat there dying. Let’s get it going again and make you some money!
Set up a schedule and stick to it. Don’t try to make a schedule that you know there’s no way in the world you could keep up with it, though. If you can’t write every day and you know that, don’t make a schedule to post every day. If you wander away from your schedule don’t just give up. Recognize and accept it and move on. Get back on track. A good idea is to use one of the free editorial calendar plugins and one day sit down and brainstorm ideas. Plug them into your calendar so all you have to do is look at the day’s subject and write it.
Learn Some SEO and Put it to Use
For every post you plan on writing, do proper keyword research for it. You can use the free Google Adwords for this for now, no need to invest in expensive software for serious marketers. Select a few different keywords you want to target and sprinkle them throughout your post. Once you have some decent content rolling in, try to make connections with other bloggers in your niche. Offer to write a post for them in return for a backlink from their site. Write a few articles per week and publish them on article directories and web 2.0 platforms with a link in the body of the article pointing back to an article on your blog.
After you have a decent amount of content on your blog that you’ve written and you’re getting a little bit of traffic, start adding some advertising to your blog (like Google Adsense). Don’t overdo it, as you don’t want the advertising to overwhelm your blog and turn-off readers. Later when your traffic has picked up, you will be able to sell ad space on your blog or sell blog posts once in a while (don’t make a habit of selling blog posts, though).
Get into Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is huge and there are lots of people who make a killing with it. You basically send traffic to a product or service and if someone you send buys, you get paid a commission. So if your blog is about gardening, then you could put links in your posts to gardening tools, books, etc… A few of the biggest affiliate companies to consider signing up with are Clickbank, Amazon and Commission Junction.
Promotions and Coupons
Promotions and coupons can be a great way to market your blog or to promote a product (most affiliate sites won’t let you do this, but you can create your own product. Again, if your blog is about gardening, you can write a report about how to help roses survive the winter and sell it). However, this is also a great way to simply drive more traffic and earn more readers/subscribers to your blog. BehindtheCounter.com, which offers everything from Home Depot coupons to online coupons for Amazon, has done this several times over the past year.
To recap, the first thing you want to do is revive your blog. Start posting regularly with search-friendly posts (using targeted keywords) and you’ll start to see more traffic. Then the sky’s the limit to what you can earn once you have the traffic flowing in.