How do bloggers make money? (Let’s spill the tea)

blog post How do bloggers make money? The real deal The Greatest Digital Creatives by Cherrie Ann Balictar

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read the Disclaimer for more info.

If you’ve been blogging for years and STILL not making money, this is for you. Today, we will answer the most intriguing question of all: “How do bloggers make money?

If you started a blog as a hobby, and you don’t have any intention of making money off of it, you can skip this post and check out the ones I wrote about how to create a 12-month blog plan, blogger burnout, and how to overcome self-doubt

But if you’re here because you need direction to grow and monetize your blog, stick around because today, I will tell you some of the…

Most common ways of how do bloggers make money

Let’s get started.

1. Freelance services

When I first started The Greatest, my main goal is to build my personal brand for my freelance services. 

But starting a blog from scratch allowed me to learn about other aspects of the industry, which gave me more business opportunities on how to monetize my blog that will generate multiple income streams for me.

At present, over 80% of my income comes from my services. These are 

In fact, I have a special treat for new bloggers like you. 

How about I create your blog for free? 

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Wicked at WordPress by Her Paper Route Affiliate link The Greatest Digital Creatives

Related post: 15 Highly-Profitable Freelance Services New Bloggers Can Offer

2. Affiliate marketing

In a nutshell, affiliate marketing is selling someone else’s product in exchange for a commission. 

What I love about affiliate marketing is, you get to promote products you love and get paid without buying inventory. 

Besides, bloggers are known to review, test, and recommend products for their audience.

Don’t worry. Even if you don’t have a huge following yet, there are affiliate programs new bloggers like you can take advantage of.

To find what affiliate products fit your niche, check out my blog post below.

Related post: 30 High-Paying Affiliate Programs Perfect for New Bloggers 

3. Sponsored posts

Did you know that Kim Kardashian charges at least $250,000 per IG post?

What are sponsored posts?

Sponsored posts are paid advertisements created by a blogger or influencer for a brand. 

Some of the most common sponsored posts come in forms of an

  • Instagram post
  • Facebook page post
  • YouTube video
  • Blog post

(Did you watch a recent YouTube video where the creator mentioned a disclaimer that “This video is sponsored by ___?”)

The more followers you have, the more opportunities you get to do sponsored posts.  

Also, it would be helpful if you have a media kit handy. It gives companies and brands an idea if your target audience fit their demographics. 

If you are in the fashion and lifestyle niche, Instagram is one of the most common social media platforms to do sponsored posts. 

So, if this is one of your blogging goals this year, now’s your chance to get help from our Facebook group. Inside, we have daily threads that will help you grow your social media accounts.  

the-greatest-digital-creatives-facebook-group-1

Related post: 10 Inspiring Media Kits from Bloggers

4. Ads

How do bloggers get paid by running ads? 

The first thing that will come to mind is Google Adsense especially if you also have a YouTube channel connected to your blog.

However, there are instances when Google Adsense will disappoint you.

Chances are, your account

  • Doesn’t get approved 
  • Disabled or suspended for unknown reasons
  • Ad revenue doesn’t even earn enough to treat yourself a Starbucks coffee 

There are alternatives that are waaaayyy better than Google Adsense.

These are:

Adsterra

Evadav

Ezoic

Infolinks

Media.net

Mediavine

Monumetric

SHE Media

PropellerAds

But before you apply, check out the requirements first. Some require you to at least have 10,000 page views per month.

5. Selling your own products (physical and digital)

I see a lot of Pinterest pins saying how new bloggers earned their first $1k within 2 to 3 months of starting a blog.

In my honest opinion, that is possible if and ONLY IF, they’re already selling their own products prior to their launch.

If you don’t have a product in mind, the most common path is to create content consistently, grow your website traffic, and run ads (which takes time, by the way).  

But, if you’re ready to start selling from the get-go, you can earn within a few months by selling 

  • Printables
  • Ebooks
  • Books
  • Merch
  • Pinterest pin templates
  • Journals
  • Worksheets
  • Homeschool materials
  • Recipes
  • Stock photos

If you want to use a different platform in selling digital products separate from your blog, you can open a store in Creative Market.

Explore beautiful and ready-to-use creative assets, templates, font styles, and premium graphics. Open your store for free, plus get free products every Monday when you purchase from talented creators. 

Or if you want to stick with your WordPress website, you can install the Woo-commerce plugin to help you add your product listings and payment gateway.

6. Membership sites

How do bloggers make money through membership sites?

Membership sites have been very popular recently. 

Although maintaining a membership site is a lot of work compared to selling online courses, this will help you generate a steady income per month.

Did you know that you can turn an ordinary WordPress blog into a membership site?

You can use

Learndash

Memberium

Memberpress 

But if you want to use a separate platform for your membership site, you can use

Teachable

Membervault

Patreon

Related post: 7 Membership Sites That Make $100k per year 

7. Selling online courses

I am super grateful that even if I steered away from the academe, I still have the ability to pursue my love for teaching in my own terms. That is, by selling online courses. 

As I am writing this, I’m almost done recording videos for my course which will launch soon, yey!

I will announce the early bird offer via email. So, if you want to get first dibs on my course, please subscribe to my email list.

the-greatest-digital-creatives-email-lead-magnet

P.S. Massive freebies and discounts will be given to those who will take advantage of the early bird offer (wink). 

Related post: FREE SEO courses for new bloggers

8. Coaching and/or Mentoring programs

How do bloggers make money from coaching and/or mentoring programs?

You can charge as much as $75 for a 60-minute one-on-one coaching session. 

So if you provide expert advice on niches like taxation, real estate, and finance management, consider offering this to your audience. 

Related post: How to offer coaching services on your blog 

9. Speaking engagement

Last year, I was invited to be a keynote speaker about what I do as a freelance writer.

Honestly, I didn’t really expect that the school would give me anything. 

I hoped there’s free lunch and a certificate as a token of appreciation. 

But I came home with a certificate, a bag of goodies, and an envelope with my honorarium. 

In some cases, successful bloggers are invited to a huge speaking engagement or conference and be paid. 

Of course, it’s impossible now since we’re still in quarantine. 

But virtual conferences and webinars held via Zoom are very common. 

Plus, speaking in front of a new audience creates a new opportunity to promote your brand, products, and services. 

10. Podcast

Do you listen to Getting Curious by Jonathan Van Ness?

He interviews some of the smartest people on the planet about anything that makes him curious.

You too can be invited in such collaboration.

Not every guest’s appearance is “monetized”. But like others, this is an excellent way to reach a much wider audience and increase your online visibility.

How do bloggers get paid?

Now that we know the different ways on how to monetize blogs, let’s talk about getting paid. Is there really money involved? All the time?

First, let’s dive into…

1. Exchange deals

Not all brand partnerships can be monetized at first. Others start with exchange deals.

What are exchange deals?

It is an agreement between the blogger or influencer to share or post a review or recommendation in exchange for free products or services.

If you love watching beauty gurus sharing PR boxes, those can be exchange deals. 

While some companies don’t really require bloggers or influencers to post a product review, this is actually a good start especially for new bloggers to showcase their creativity and build a professional relationship with brands and their audience. 

But just to put it out there, not all product recommendations are exchange deals. A lot of new bloggers spend their own money to buy products to review. This is a ‘business expense.”

But if there’s money involved, the law requires bloggers to put out a disclaimer. For my legal pages, I got my legal bundle from Amira of aselfguru.com. She is a lawyer/blogger offering legal templates to online businesses.

blog-post-Protect-your-blog-legally_-The-stress-free-guide-to-legal-pages-for-bloggers-The-Greatest-Digital-Creatives-1

Related post: Protect your blog legally: The stress-free guide to legal pages for new bloggers

Now, the money.

2. Send an invoice 

There are apps you can use to send invoices to your clients. Some of the most common are 

Paypal

Wave 

Or download a free invoice template here

What currency should I use?

If you’re dealing with international clients, sending an invoice in USD is the most convenient.

But for local clients, our local currency works just as well.

how do bloggers get paid? The Greatest Digital Creatives

Conclusion

In the end, how do bloggers get paid depends on how you treat your blog as a business.

Without it, it’s easy to experience blogger burnout and eventually rule out your desire to make money. 

Moreover, how do bloggers make money isn’t just about having the perfect product or service to sell. But also, how you build and maintain a solid relationship with your audience. 

Selling is easy as soon as you’re able to establish trust between you and your followers.

Aaand, there’s no such thing as an overnight success. 

Trust in your process. 

Be brave to pursue your long term blogging goals.

I hope you find this helpful.

What products or services do you plan to offer soon?

Take care.

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