If you have read my blog for even a few weeks, you know how important it is that you maintain a blog to support your business. When I first started blogging, my intention was simply to have a place to share my thoughts ideas, and connect personally with members and prospective members of the Indie Business Network.
Before too long, I realized that my blog was far more powerful than I ever expected it would be. The more people my blog connected me to, the more opportunities it provided for me to increase my income.
This post shares three things you can do to begin to monetize your blog, and you can start using a few of them right away
1. Sell Books
These don't have to be big books either.
If you know how to make and sell products, then you know how to teach people about something. Whether it's the best skincare ingredients, how to make a useful consumer product, how to be successful at something, or simply your story with personal insights and tips — you know enough about something that could be neatly packaged into a book and sold to people who want to know what you know.
You don't have to be an expert in a traditional sense in order to command a price for the knowledge between your ears. If you are a successful entrepreneur who is making and selling products to consumers, you are an expert at more things than you know.
As an entrepreneur, you can leverage what you know by writing a book that people will buy. You can sell it right from your blog, and if you'd like, you can take it a step further and publish it on Amazon so even more people will buy it.
Donna Maria, Indie Business Network
2. Use Affiliate Programs
Affiliate programs are great because you can make money by using your blog to recommend products you already use and love. For example, if your website is built on the Shopify platform and you love it, why not grab Shopify's affiliate link and earn commissions when customers referred from your blog sign up for Shopify?
I do this with Audio Acrobat, an audio recording service I use for my member calls and teleseminars. It's free for me every month because my commissions are greater than my monthly payment. In fact, I don't even try to sell the service; people just click the link when they are listening to a call and they see the service I use. They sign up for it and I get paid. It's a great perk to earn a little cash from something as easy as sharing something I use and wholeheartedly recommend.
If you need an easy to use, reasonably priced way to record and store your audio calls, I highly recommend Audio Acrobat. (That's my affiliate link ….)
3. Sell Ads
Of the three options listed here, this one will take the longest to ramp up to. Once you begin blogging regularly around a particular theme or group of complementary themes, you will begin to grow an audience around those themes. Whether it's healthy eating, women and beauty, fitness, or general lifestyle issues, you will begin to attract not only people who want to buy your products, but also people who are interested in the topics you cover on your blog. Once this happens, you can leverage your audience and sell ads.
You are going to need a rather large audience of subscribers and a very steady posting schedule to do this, but if you find that you love blogging enough, it will eventually become an opportunity you will want to explore. You can sell ads yourself directly to companies you know want to reach your particular audience, or you can set up advertising through a program such as Buy Sell Ads, which will help you carry ads that are relevant to your audience. They will also handle all of the time consuming payment processing for you.
I do not recommend that you post Google Ads anywhere on any of your sites, at all. They look unprofessional and smarmy, and show your audience that it's more important for you to make money on them than it is for you to share content and links that they would actually be interested in.
The ideas listed here are just a few of the ways you can leverage your blog to generate additional profitable income streams in your business. Selling what you know and using affiliate programs are great places to start and there is little to no investment other than the time it takes to organize and publish your thoughts and/or set up an affiliate link.
If you liked this post, you may also enjoy Top Complementary Business Models For Handmade Entrepreneurs.
Do you blog? Have you figured out ways to directly monetize your blog? Have you used books, ads and/or affiliate links? I'd love to know what you think of these ideas and whether you have used any of them in your business. Please share your thoughts and feedback in the comments below, or share on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.