Guest post by Jack Bamford
So you’ve finally decided to start that blog you’ve wanted to start for a while now?
That’s fantastic! Welcome!
Now you want to know how you can start to build your revenue streams from day one? Brilliant! You came to the right place.
I’m going to give you some food for thought, and provide, what I feel are the 10 BEST ways to make money as a new blogger.
Before we get too deep into it though, I first want to bring your attention to what a wonderful job Izzy is doing here.
Check out the rest of her blog, if you want to learn the best possible blogging tips to get yourself off the ground.
If you want to learn how you can make your money go much further than it currently does, or how to make more of it in day to day life, you can head on my way and see if anything strikes your fancy!
Let’s crack on shall we?
Build an Email List
Strictly speaking, this isn’t a method of earning any money, but it’s the groundwork for building your potential customers down the line!
An email list is the same as followers on Twitter, or Instagram, or subscribers on YouTube.
It’s a method in which you are able to broadcast your content, or new products/services to those who are already following you, to make sales or earning money, easy.
Imagine a dine-in restaurant with no chairs. Do you think they would do very well?
You’d think not!
An email list allows you to collect the contact information of people who are interested in your work; it allows them to sit down, in your restaurant.
You can build a list with a free plug-in on WordPress.
Simply go to plug-ins -> add new -> and search for SumoMe.
It’s completely free and is a great plug-in to get you started, you can, of course, upgrade to a better, paid collection system when you see fit.
Affiliations, or being an affiliate, is basically the act of trying to sell someone else’s product or service to your own audience, typically for a set figure payment or a commission.
You will typically get a referral link when you sign up for something that has an affiliate program, and it is this link that you need to broadcast.
For example: I use <insert product/service here>, if you are interested you can click HERE (Insert your referral link) to purchase it for yourself. If you sign up with this link, you will save yourself £5!
Obviously, that is only a general idea, affiliations will differ massively, and it is up to you how to integrate them into your own writing.
My only advice is, only include them if it naturally flows.
You don’t necessarily want to force them in otherwise people will likely detect it, and you may just be branded a sell-out.
You may also be wondering,
Why do I need to set-up affiliations now, when I have no audience?
The answer to that is simple.
Everyone has to start somewhere, that much is a given, but by building your affiliations from day one, you are giving people the opportunity to use affiliation links on your first-ever few posts, ten years down the line when you have a huge audience.
Those same links from day one can bring money into your pocket at any time.
Just because you may not have an audience or a small one, don’t let that deter you from setting up affiliation links in your writing.
Interact and Build Friendships
Especially amongst other bloggers; you scratch my back I’ll scratch yours.
Of course, your primary aim in building blogger friends shouldn’t be to make money off said person, because they will likely see through your facade.
You should want to make friends in a community that you have an interest in because you can help each other, share tips and all sorts; not everything is money.
But it can be a bonus…
You make friends with someone who is a blogger, and suddenly,
- they want sponsored posts that they are paying for.
- they launch a new service that they want affiliates for.
- they launch a book and want your help selling it for a small share.
This is just a select few, there are more options that could be on the list.
For example, I would consider myself to be friends with Izzy, and I am writing a guest post for her, not to make money from it because I personally don’t consider that important, but for a favour, and of course because I enjoy writing.
I am now also an affiliate for her products on her store, which you can check out here (see how smoothly I did that?)
Mutual friendships really can be a useful way to make a little extra money with your blogging, but primarily it should be to make good friends in your community.
You shouldn’t just befriend someone to try and gain from them.
Convert Posts Into eBooks
So you’ve been blogging for a few months now, and you have a good selection of posts all on a similar topic that could all somewhat link together, with a few fine adjustments?
I smell an eBook!
Believe it or not but a fair few of people’s first eBooks, do tend to come from knowledge and content that they have already posted.
The difference is a lot of people will rather pay for the convenience.
Your site could be laid out immaculately, look so professional and designed perfectly, but ultimately, convenience trumps all of that.
Some people would rather part ways with a couple £, than traipse through twenty-odd posts to get the same information that they could get all in one place, in a nicely readymade eBook.
I’m not saying just lift all of the information straight from your blog and place it straight into your eBook, no.
You have to make an effort with it still, slightly adapt your wordings and perhaps go into greater detail.
Make it feel as though, the people who have read all of your posts and who have also purchased your eBook are going to get something out of it, rather than just paying to read what they have already read for free.
But it is as simple as that, a lot of the information and filling for your first eBook, is already written and in place on your blog.
You’ve just got to adapt it for your brand new shiny book.
Write New eBooks
Away from your posts and anything else you may have written about before on your blog; this could be something completely new.
If you’re a foodie, you can write about some exclusive homemade recipes you have.
And if you haven’t written it yet, give people an incentive to want to purchase it; early knowledge.
If you have an audience that are tightly knit with you, you could write about your back story and how you got into food or cooking.
If you’re a money blogger, you can write about some exclusive ways to maximise your incomings and minimise your outgoings.
Again like above, give people an early knowledge insight on a particular topic; incentivise it for them.
Nowadays, with the ease of publishing your own eBooks, the possibilities really are endless.
You can write about whatever you want, and realistically, charge whatever you want.
Ensure to not price yourself out of sales, think about it if you were the buyer, what would you want to pay for your eBook.
So long as you can write it, edit it, quality filter it, market it (your blog and social media platforms can be used for that), the money is all yours then.
No need to go through a publishing company anymore.
Best of all, with the technology available and continually improving, there will be no production costs.
You can simply write it up on your computer and upload it to an eBook hosting website and job done!
This is a tricky one!
Some people like them, some don’t!
I personally think they are fine, so long as they are used in moderation.
I must admit, I do prefer blogs that do not have adverts on them.
The main reason for this is because they have such strong revenue streams in other areas, likely affiliations.
It’s usually the case that the smaller blogs will have ads on them, and this will likely be their main source of income when getting off the ground.
The reason for this is because people don’t need to interact with them like they do with affiliations.
Just simply having ads on your page and eyes (not even necessarily paying them any attention) viewing them, means money in your pocket.
This is advantageous because it means, people don’t have to sign up for anything, or bite into any of your affiliations.
They can simply enjoy their read and maybe head over to another section of your blog.
Chances are, people won’t necessarily buy anything you have to offer, or use any of your affiliations until they have been following you for a little while.
So this means ads, ads will probably be your primary income stream for a while, all I will say again is, moderation.
You want to find that balance where people won’t be constantly interfered with and be put off reading any further and clicking off, and zero.
I think we have all been on sites before where it never actually gets a chance to load because it is littered with ads.
We’ve clicked off before we even get a chance to see the content, don’t be like one of these sites.
It’s fine to have a few though for sure.
My recommendation is to play around with it. Set them up then go on your own site as an outsider and look at it. Be honest with yourself whether or not there are too many.
Ads shouldn’t be your sole focus, you shouldn’t realistically aim to have them as your long term primary source of income.
You want to focus on building a good looking professional blog site.
One that is riddled with good quality content to build a good, solid, interactive audience, who will repay your efforts by signing up through your affiliations and buying your products and services; long term.
Heavily advertised sites lose that personal touch, and people will be put off.
No matter how good the content, you will lose that authentic feel if the site is riddled with ads.
If you have a post that has subheadings under a heading, every two or three subheadings down, place an ad.
This would be enough to bring in some money for yourself, but not so much that it is going to annoy people. It’s all about finding that balance.
The best way you can get involved with ads is through Google.
You can also download a plug-in for your blog, called SiteKit. This plug-in is by Google.
During signup, it will ask you to link the two together so you can easily track your ads all from your WordPress site.
This as well as analytics and search console.
Yes, that’s correct you can use YouTube too.
If you are writing a long and well-informed post, and you feel that certain parts of your post would be better explained with a video, in the form of a tutorial, this is where YouTube comes in super handy.
Let’s say you have a complex issue to talk about, where it would take 1000+ words and a series of screenshots to explain, all of which will likely come out looking a mess.
A 2-minute video where you show a recording of your screen and talk over it to explain exactly what you wanted to explain in those 1000 words.
Both are definitely options for you, some people would prefer the read where some people would prefer the video. There’s nothing and no one to say you can’t do both.
Include the video then write up a short summary underneath, that way you are pleasing both crowds, and you’re onto a real winner then.
At least if you embed YouTube videos, you are adding a new realm of monetisation to your blog then to really diversify your revenue streams.
Not only this, but just by having your videos on YouTube, there’s a distinct possibility that new people could quite easily stumble upon them, enjoy your tutorial, and want to learn more about you, click your blog link and BOOM, you just gained a new fan in your audience!
If you like the sound of this as another monetisation option, you can sign up to YouTube here.
The way in which you earn money through YouTube is again done through ads.
Fortunately, Google owns YouTube so you can use the same Google AdSense that you signed up for to display ads on your blog posts earlier.
To apply ads to your YouTube videos simply:
- Click on your icon in the top right and select ‘Your Channel.’
- Click ‘Customise Channel’
- It will open up a new tab, and on the sidebar you will see ‘Monetisation’, click it and simply follow through with all the tasks. Make sure you link it to the same Google AdSense account you created earlier. That way the money you earn from the ads on your blog site and the money you earn from the ads on your YouTube videos, will end up in the same place!
Ah yes, sponsored posts!
Getting paid for what you already do as a blogger anyway, splendid!
Typically sponsored posts will be in the form of a review or you talking about a product or a service, that a company (or person), has paid you, or will pay you, to talk about!
My advice on this is to make sure that before you drum up the post and think about posting it to your page, consuming a good chunk of your time, you have a written contract, agreed to and signed by both parties, stating that they will pay you ‘X’ amount for ‘Y’ work.
This is important because if a company or person isn’t trustworthy and you do not know enough about them, they could quite easily turn around and say there was never an agreement in place and just refuse payment.
At least with a signed contract, it protects your financial interests, and your time, and they are legally bound to honour their side of the deal.
I must admit, it is quite exciting when someone comes along to you and asks if you would be willing to talk about their product or service. It’s quite flattering actually.
What I suggest however is, never, ever, ever, accept a deal if the payment is not monetary.
Like I said, it’s flattering to have someone come along and ask you to write about them. Unless it’s monetary, you should not even entertain the idea of it.
If they offer you exposure, instant red flags, don’t waste your time.
Gift vouchers is also another common one.
For me personally, I wouldn’t want anything to do with this, unless of course, it’s a service you do frequently use, but otherwise, I wouldn’t.
You can’t pay your bills, invest your money or anything with a gift voucher, so it’s always best to get paid in cold hard cash.
Sometimes brands will approach you as you get a bigger following. In your early days, you will have to seek out viable brands, on a level playing field with you, who might actually benefit from your piece.
Don’t expect, if you are a beauty blogger as of two weeks ago, to go and score yourself a six-figure deal with Maybelline.
Engaging and Guest Posting
9 times out of 10, you will receive payment for a guest post, but the chances of the payment being monetary are small.
Sometimes, you can get paid for a guest post, if the person is offering that for your service.
More often than not though the payment you receive from a guest post is a backlink, which helps to beef up your domain authority.
What is a backlink, and what is domain authority I hear you ask?
Key SEO tools that every blogger needs.
Backlinking in a nutshell, are other sites and webpage’s that have a link, back to your site.
Domain authority is the stature of your website on search engines. Imagine a domain authority of 1/100 is a cute little 3 house hamlet, where a domain authority of 100/100 is a great big castle, with a draw bridge and archer towers and the works. Does that help? I hope so!
Guest posting doesn’t necessarily pay in money.
I would argue in your early days, accruing as many good quality back links as you can and improving your domain authority is more important than money.
It’s about playing the long game with blogging and having the patience to see it out.
Not only that, but you are improving your chances of increasing your audience size.
If you have an audience in the single figures, and you have a good quality guest post on another blog with a few hundred in the audience, there’s a possibility that a handful will come your way.
Not many in the grand scheme, but in your early days you will be thankful for that small handful!
So to gain the option to do guest posts, I urge you to engage.
If you need more help, I recommend you go back up and read my topic on ‘Interact and Build Friendships’ again!
Every single niche has the option for the creation of products.
I encourage you to try and prove me wrong because I can guarantee you, you won’t be able to.
Products are a great way to increase your income streams from your blog. Not only this, but improve your audience’s trust in you.
If you provide a good quality product that your audience will genuinely gain from, for a fair price, they will love you for it!
As a blogger, I feel that the best way you can make a product to sell on your site would be in digital form.
This could be a course or a coaching service, where you create a massive instruction pack full of pdf files, images, voice notes, viable research, your own past notes, videos etc.
Upload this to your site, chances are you will never have to touch it again (other than the odd tweak and update here and there), it doesn’t get more passive than that.
You can continue your day to day blogging and posting, while that course is sitting nicely on your store page, making sales while you don’t have to do a thing, the customer can download it all straight to their computer.
The need for the creation of physical products is no more.
eBooks, as mentioned before, is another digital product any niche can create.
Your first one or two can honestly be a compilation of relevant posts already on your blog, where 90% of the content already exists.
The possibilities for digital products are endless, all you have to do is apply your mind!
If you’re a foodie, you can sell individual recipes, a cookbook, one to one lessons.
If you’re a home blogger, you can sell personalised blueprints, designs, templates.
If you’re a blogging blogger, you can sell SEO and marketing tips, planners, calendars.
If you’re a money blogger, you can sell personalised savings advice, unseen investment strategies.
If you’re a fashion blogger, you can sell your own prints, your own clothing (via a company such as Teespring who handle the production and shipping, all you do is design).
I thought of all of these in the time it took me to eat half a sandwich, and only one of those niche’s apply to me.
You can start to see what I mean where the options for things you can sell, really are endless, it’s just up to you to think of genuinely useful products that you can offer from your niche.
Link shortening, quite a unique one I bet not a lot have heard of!
Have you ever had a massively long link, that looked ugly and hideous and decided to shrink it down, I bet you went to goo.gl or bit.ly, didn’t you?
Did you know there are actually sites that will pay you, for shortening those same links?
Well, there are!
The link shortening website will shorten your link, and give you a new link which when clicked, will take you to an intermediary site, one that typically has a few adverts on.
The shortening website makes its money off of eyes on those ads, and then it splits the earnings with you since it is thanks to you, those eyes were on those ads in the first place.
Now you’re probably wondering:
What are these websites?
Relax, I’ve got you covered!
Ouo.io is a popular shortening sites out there. As such, is trusted by many to deliver the results they desire and require.
Here are some of their stats:
Rates: Upwards of 1.50$ / 1000 views
Repeat Viewers: Yes
Referral Program: 20% commissions
Minimum Payout: 5$ for PayPal
Payment Frequency: 1st and 15th of the month
Shorte.st is the one I personally used to begin with, and sometimes still do.
I don’t typically opt for this method of monetising my blog anymore, not to discredit its viability of a monetisation method.
I feel that now, I don’t require it and I don’t want to shove unnecessary ads in my viewers faces.
Here are some of their stats:
Rates: Up to 14$ / 1000 views
Repeat Viewers: Yes but at a reduced rate
Referral Program: 20% commissions
Minimum Payout: 5$ for PayPal
Payment Frequency: 10th of the month
Clicksfly is the one that is ranked as the highest paying shortening website out there, you can make up to as much as 150$ per 1000 views, crazy numbers!
Here are some of their stats:
Rates: Upwards of 3$ / 1000 views
Repeat Viewers: Yes
Referral Program: 20% commissions
Minimum Payout: 3$ for PayPal
Payment Frequency: Once a month
Those are to name a few, but there are plenty out there.
In my opinion, these are three of the best ones on the market.
If you like the sounds of this as one of your blog’s income stream, then go for it!
Future Food for Thought
This isn’t something that you could realistically do in your early days of blogging unless you blow up overnight in your first month, then this does apply to you!
I have listed and explained ten things you can do within your first weeks of blogging and start to earn little bits of extra cash here and there.
It’s important to remember you won’t make it by the bucket load until you have a substantial audience; everyone has to start somewhere.
What I will touch on now though briefly, are some things that you can do to increase your stature and your bank balance when you have a steadily increasing audience!
There are other platforms, that, once you have a good-sized audience, it may be worth expanding to, and if you broadcast it to your viewers, some will follow!
Expansion is always a good thing because not only does it mean you are expanding your name, it allows you to diversify your revenue streams!
Ever heard of the phrase?
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket
Simply meaning, don’t rely too much on one thing – if you drop that basket, you’ve lost all your eggs! If you split your eggs across 4, 5, 6 or even more baskets, if you drop one basket, you still have a good amount to fall back on!
Putting this into context – when you have the opportunity and facilities to add another platform to your repertoire, do it!
One day, for whatever reason, your blog could crumble, or one of your other platforms could crumble.
At least by expanding, you have others to fall back on!
As mentioned earlier, a good platform to expand to is YouTube, you can make videos on your niche and potentially convey a greater message through a video medium.
Podcasts are good, plain and simple.
If you build an audience on your niche(s), you may want to consider branching into podcasting, because it adds a more personal touch to the way you do things.
You’re simply allowing your audience to see you for who you really are, in front of a camera, talking about your niche.
You can also allow for viewers to call in, or pose their own questions that you can answer for them, and even have a co-host to make the show more engaging.
Podcasting, if done right can be very interactive and can help boost your numbers too!
If you like, podcasting is another basket too, like we mentioned before!
Well, that concludes my post on the 10 BEST ways to make money as a new blogger!
I hope you found the post useful, and you can see yourself acting on a lot of the things I have mentioned.
If you want to get serious about your blog and want to start making money from day one, then this is definitely the route to go down.
I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Izzy, for giving me the opportunity to guest post on her blog.
She is an incredible person and produces phenomenal content. Please do make sure to carry on reading, and check out some more of her content (make sure you follow her too!).
She creates wonderful advice for all sorts of bloggers, and anyone can gain knowledge from her posts; no matter your blogging experience!
If you like, you can come on over and give me a shot too!
I make content on your money, how to make more of it, how to save it and make it go further, investments, good habits and more! I also dabble with a bit of travel and fitness.
So if any of that is of interest, you can check me out here. If you would be so kind, you could also follow my blog too, just wait for the pop-up.
Thank you for taking the time to read, I sincerely hope you get good use from it.
Take care all.