How to Monetize Your Blog and Quit Your Day Job
I’m going to let you all in on a secret: I can tell you exactly how to monetize your blog so that you can earn a full-time income. That’s a pretty audacious claim, right? Well, I’ll admit that’s it’s not as easy as it may sound and it definitely won’t happen all at once. However, if you work hard it is certainly possible and I’ll give you proof, too!
Now, let’s be realistic for a moment. I want you to have the right expectations for your blogging before you start, but don’t let this discourage you. I’m going to tell you how to monetize your blog for real.
Have I quit my day job? No. Why? Well, first of all, I have almost $200,000 in debt that my wife and I are working to pay off as soon as we can. Second, I love my day job and it gives me a chance to make a difference in the lives of kids, teens, and young adults – which is important to me. Finally, I’m still on my way to making a full-time income from blogging (remember how I said it’s not going to happen all at once?).
Let’s think about this – I’m telling you that I can teach you how to monetize your blog and earn enough income that you can quit your day job. Yet I haven’t done this myself. Seems odd, right? But the thing is: my goal is not to make a full time income at the moment. My goal is to help you, my dear readers, earn money, save money, pay off your debt, reach your goals, and live your lives to the fullest.
If that’s my goal – why would I lie to you about how to monetize your blog? I would never do that! Instead, I will work my tail off to ensure that you can get everything you hope for out of your life.
So, I said that I could offer you proof that it is possible to earn enough income blogging that you could quit your day job, right? You’re probably wondering what this proof could possibly be – I’m telling you how to monetize your blog and most of these strategies I am just learning myself!
Well, here’s the thing: I’ve been learning from the masters. I’ve been reading, researching, and spending countless hours working to build my knowledge of blogging to share with you. My goal is to save you time so that you can begin working on your blog now and leave the research to me.
The thing with blogging is that time is key. You can spend three weeks researching how to monetize your blog or you can spend ten minutes reading this post and the rest of the three weeks implementing your monetization strategies. Which one do you think will help you to earn the most income?
Awesome People Who Earn Six-Figure Salaries Blogging
Let’s look at some examples of bloggers who have accomplished a full-time, six-figure income just by implementing these strategies for monetizing their blog. I’ll add their links so you can check them out, but don’t forget to come back to learn what these strategies are.
My favorite blogger of all time, Sarah Titus, is one of these awesome people and the first that I want to share with you. Sarah made a commitment that she would earn money online within one year of her divorce. She followed through and ended the year making over $10,000 a MONTH.
Another phenomenal example of a blogger earning a significant amount of income monthly with her blog. Last month (November, 2015) she earned a net profit of over $21,000!
This blog shows the ultimate transformation of blogger income. She records each month her earnings and how it has evolved over the years. When she started out, her income was $45.11 a month and has now grown to over $18,000 a month.
These are just three of my favorite bloggers and their monthly incomes, but they are just a small selection of the MANY bloggers who have earned a full-time income from blogging.
You may be wondering why I chose female bloggers for this list – and to that I want to share with you a little about target markets. You see, there are plenty of male bloggers who also earn a significant income blogging. In fact, many earn more than female bloggers. However, because my target audience is focused on females, I chose to showcase female bloggers.
That’s not to say that men don’t read my blog (and I certainly hope they do!), but the majority of my audience just happens to be women.
Target audiences are definitely something to keep in mind when blogging – an important piece of any business really. They consist of the people you hope will pay you, their influencers, and your own personal supporters. Now, I won’t go into detail on this today, but watch my upcoming blogs for a detailed post on how to determine your target market, build your brand, and create the ultimate-blog (I’ll be doing a How to Blog Right Series in February, for all you awesome followers, it’ll follow the No Spend Challenge).
How to Monetize Your Blog & Quit Your Day Job
Now here’s the information you have all been waiting for: I will show you how to monetize your blog. There are many different ways to do this, but I’m going to share only the best of the best with you. Remember how I told you that I would do all the research so that you could learn from me? I hope that this information helps you to build a blog to be proud of; a blog that can earn you a full-time income so that you can quit your day job and live your life to the fullest.
No matter what, I promise to be transparent with you as we delve into this journey together. Each month, I post debt repayment updates to my blog and in them are income reports for DIY Jahn. If you ever want to know how much I am earning from these sources, visit those updates!
However, keep in mind that my income is low at the moment because I am only two months in – and it will take your income a little bit to grow too. As long as you keep working hard, utilizing the tips I share with you below, and writing passionately – you have the opportunity to earn a full-time income and quit your day job. It’s up to you to make it happen.
See, it’s like this. Let’s say that you are in need of a house. I can spend hours researching the best ways to build houses, write them all down for you, hand you all the pieces you need, and give you the tools. And that’s what I’m doing for you right now. But unless you take the time to read the instructions and use the tools and materials to build the house, you will still be homeless.
The same goes for blogging. I have spent hours researching these tips for you, writing out a guide, handing you all the materials and tools, but unless you sit down and begin your journey – working hard toward your goal – you will never get there. Again, I’ll tell you, it’s up to you to make it happen, but I’ll give you everything you need to get there.
I will teach you an overview of how to monetize your blog here, by giving an overview of each of these five areas. Now, during my How to Blog Right Series (starting in February), I’ll give you an in-depth tutorial on how to complete each and every step for the greatest success – so stay tuned!
Here they are, what you’ve all been waiting for, here are the top five ways to monetize your blog:
- Build a Money-Making Blog from the Start
One of the first things you must do before you begin blogging or learning how to monetize your blog is to build a blog that can be monetized from the start. I have a detailed tutorial that you can view here (HERE) about how to complete this process.
A high quality blog, built to earn a full-time income, is always a self-hosted blog and I recommend using Bluehost for any of your self-hosting needs (I’ve heard some horror stories about other domain hosting networks, but I’ll go into more detail on this later).
I can tell you more about what all that means for you and your blog on my post: How to Make Money Blogging (read it here).
- Affiliate Marketing Programs
As for my blog (and many of the blogs that I have researched) affiliate marketing is the number one source of revenue in the blogging industry. In fact, many bloggers earn thousands monthly simply by creating affiliate and referral sales.
What does affiliate marketing mean? Well, it basically means that you are leading potential buyers to a direct sales website. For example, I utilize Amazon Affiliate Partnership (you can join too, click here) and that means that I advertise some Amazon products on my blog. Sometimes I write reviews or tutorials on these products, sometimes I just include a link to my favorite products or books, and sometimes I include a search advertisement for Amazon itself. These look like this:
When somebody clicks on those links and makes a purchase from Amazon, I earn a small income as a reward for leading customers to their site. Now, these links do not make the products cost any more than normal – so don’t worry there. You aren’t raising prices for your audience, simply leading them to products that you already love.
The key here is that you always keep them in mind and only lead them to products that you truly believe are worth the cost.
- Creating Products
Have you ever dreamt of writing a book and being published by a world-famous author? What about writing an in-depth how-to guide on a topic you’re passionate about? Or a course to teach others about this topic? Or perhaps you really love sewing and are passionate about quilts?
If you said yes to any of the questions above (or you simply have a passion you are willing to work with) then creating a product can be a great avenue for monetizing your blog. You probably believe that you aren’t capable of creating anything worth selling, but I’m here to tell you that with hard work and a proper commitment: anyone can create a worthy product.
What types of products do bloggers create and sell? Well, anything really! The most common product for bloggers to sell are e-books, which are easily created online. These books can range from short tutorials, to in-depth how-to guides, to long fiction novels.
Second, bloggers create courses for other people to take. These can also be about anything, but need to be something that you are passionate and knowledgeable (or can become knowledgeable) about. Online courses are done within a combination of videos, audio, chat, emails, and assignments.
While these are the two main areas of products that bloggers create, there are many more to be found. Some bloggers create physical products – such as crafts that they have created (like the quilting question above, homemade jewelry, or pieces of artwork), planners and physical books, and more!
A more in-depth coverage of this topic is coming in February, but to start you thinking about product development consider this: what are you most passionate about? Now, how can you use that passion to develop a product that helps others?
If advertising were a high school student, they would probably be voted “least likely to succeed” because so many people look down on it. However, it should not be taken off the table. I have read about hundreds of bloggers who have used advertising to build their business, begin earning thousands every month, and create a blog that people know and love.
So, why do people look down on advertising so often? The answer is pretty simple. Many bloggers don’t do their research and simply begin placing advertisements everywhere in their site. They sign up for every advertisement company in the books, place them all of their web pages, and wait for the revenue to start pouring in, but that’s not how it works.
When I write my How to Blog Right Series in February, I’ll go into detail about how to keep your audience happy while utilizing advertisements for income. Until then, though, keep these pointers in mind.
First: make sure that your blog does not run slower due to an overload over advertisements. Studies show that people will spend less than three seconds looking at your page before clicking away. If it doesn’t load during that time, you’ll likely never see those readers again.
Second: avoid pop-up advertisements at all costs. There is not one thing readers hate more than having to click away a thousand pop-up ads in order to read the article they were hoping to read.
Third: never forget who your target audience is. If you are looking, like me, to advertise to people who are hoping to save money, earn money, and live life to the fullest: you wouldn’t advertise for an expensive loan company. Choose your advertisements wisely so as to maintain the trust of your readers (like I do for you)!
There’s a lot more to be said about advertising, so stay tuned for our How to Blog Right Series.
- Sponsored Posts
Finally, we have sponsored posts to cover. What are sponsored posts, you ask? Well, a sponsored post is when a company hires you to write a review or post about their product or service. Many times you will be offered products or cash as payment for these writings.
When a company is looking for a sponsored post, they will email you regarding the situation if they think you are a good fit. Now, don’t let this scare you away – if you haven’t heard from any companies, you can also email them. I’ll tell you how during our How to Blog Right Series in February. I’ll even give you sample emails that I have sent!
Now, once the email is receive and the request is made, you tell them your price. You can choose whether you charge an amount or simply a product. When you are first starting out, writing sponsored posts in exchange for products is the way to go, but as your blog grows, you can begin charging more per post.
Much like advertising, sponsored posts require careful selection. Choose products that you believe fit with the niche of your blog and that your target market will appreciate.
For example, as a lifestyle blog focused on saving money, earning money, and living life to the fullest, I wouldn’t complete a sponsored post for an expensive fashion magazine. I would, however, do a sponsored post on an affordable kitchen appliance that would help my readers save money in the long term.
When writing these posts, you need to be 100% honest. If I accepted the sponsored post for the affordable kitchen appliance, received the product, and hated it – I wouldn’t write that I thought it was amazing just to receive the payment for the post. I would tell my audience exactly what I thought.
Why? Because you guys are more important to me than any money in the world. I want you to know that you can trust me and that I will always be transparent with you. And the same should be true for your blogs – your target audience should always be in your mind.
You will notice that I didn’t include freelancing in this list. While I do believe that there is great income to be made freelancing, and that it can certainly help to add this to your blogging business, I think that this is a different area of blogging. When learning how to monetize your blog, start with the steps listed above and move to freelancing or becoming a virtual assistant if you feel called to do so later.
On that really long novel-of-a-post, I will leave you with one final thought. You have learned a lot about how to monetize your blog during this post. You’ll learn even more when we begin our How to Blog Right Series in February. Until then, keep this in mind:
No matter how you choose to monetize your blog, always remember to write passionately, speak honestly, and live life fully. The rest will fall into place.
Thank you, as always, for reading! I hope you enjoyed the post for the day. Now, I have a question for you all – please leave responses in the comments below!
What questions do you have about blogging that we can address in our How to Blog Right Series this February?
Disclaimer: Some of DIY Jahn posts contain affiliate links. While I do earn money through Fronto, Ibotta, and other companies, and bonuses for referring people, all of my opinions on the company are 100% honest and my own. Also, please note that recipes, fitness tips, and financial tips are not given by a professional. To understand what this all means for you, click here.