Making money online is a dream for many, and while it may seem easy, unless you are a web genius, it is not. When I started blogging, I had no idea it would take so many hours, especially behind the scenes. There is always something going on, even though platforms like WordPress have made things much easier compared to when I learned about making a website on Dreamweaver a few years ago. To get started, you need to buy a domain name, and hosting from one of the numerous companies offering that service. That should cost you around £50 for the first year, which is not a big investment to give a new business a try. But the real investment is the hours you are going to put in. The more time you dedicate to your blog, the better the returns.
To help you get set up, Scottish Friendly has put together a guide about making money with a blog, that is packed with tips from a person who already managed to monetize his website. The most important thing about your future blog, is that you have to enjoy the topic you are going to be talking about for the next few years. Blogging is like running a marathon. At first, everyone is excited, but most bloggers fail at the 6 to 12 months mark. Only the ones who are able to go the distance will manage to get a residual income from it. So go easy at the beginning, that is when you have a ton of quality content coming out, and you want to share it with the world as soon as possible, just start with two or three posts a week, and dedicate at least as much time as you did writing to promoting your content. Some bloggers go as far as recommending you spend 20% of your blogging hours writing and 80% promoting your website. Don’t be spammy in your approach. Make friends with bloggers in your niche, ask them how you can help, link back to their site, comment on their posts, and they should reciprocate. Try to set up a buddy system with a few newbie bloggers so you can share tips and motivate each other. Accountability works wonders when you are thinking about throwing the towel.
If you are able to write more than three posts a week, I would recommend you keep them in your queue for days when life gets in the way, or you simply have a writer’s block. It will happen sooner than you think! Don’t beat yourself up if you are not able to post for a week, just get back on the horse and things will be just fine. A few hard-core readers may have noticed you went silent for a while, but most of the blogosphere won’t. That is why it is so important to find a topic you love, and can write and write about without having to do a lot of research, unless you enjoy that part.
Once your site starts getting a little traction, it is time to think about how to monetize your content. There are many ways to do so, you can use Adsense, place banners for products related to your niche and earn an affiliate commission, create your own product or ebook, sell private advertising, or even your services as a writer.
Patience is key there, the money won’t flow in from day one, but it is an entertaining endeavour and after a while, readers will come automatically via search engines, thus creating a potential for passive income as your site grows.
This post was written in cooperation with Scottish Friendly
Steve Adcock says
I can certainly attest to the fact that patience is key, and perseverance is perhaps the most important qualifier in running a successful blog. The reason is simple – you can put up all the advertisements or commission links that you want, but you won’t make any money without traffic, and lots of it. That is where writing good quality content is paramount to drawing in visitors and keeping them coming back for more.
Setting a more relaxed posting schedule and promoting a lot are indeed great ideas. Save drafts, schedule future posts and this can help a lot when you don’t have the time to post or have no inspiration.
Emily @ The Work at Home Zone says
Appreciate your upfront honesty! When I started blogging, I was amazed at how much other stuff there was to do behind the scenes. The wordpress and related updates alone kept me busy! I wish I had read more honest posts like this before I started so impulsive been better prepared. Thanks for sharing!
Retired To Win says
I’ve taken a whole lot of pressure off myself by putting making money off my blog on a back burner. Right now, I’m just concentrating on generating useful personal finance content based on my own experiences and striving to build up traffic without getting manic about it. I’m already FIREd, so I don’t need the money. Easy does it!
Thomas @ i need money ASAP! says
Writers block is a tough one. I find that when the mood strikes its best to get 4-5 posts out. Otherwise you never know when you’ll lose that inspiration. I’ve been seriously blogging for about a year now. It’s been tough. But I stick to one post a week to keep things manageable. As you say, its a marathon, not a sprint 🙂
Thomas @ i need money ASAP! says
PS. GoDaddy has a sweet promotion right now where you can start a website for only $12! That includes domain name. No reason not to give it a try!
Emma Healey | Money Can Buy Me Happiness says
Interesting that you say three posts per week is ideal. I was thinking I needed to post 5 times per week but three sounds like the ideal mix whilst also allowing each post enough time to develop.
Jayson @ Monster Piggy Bank says
Patience, patience, and patience are really the key to success in blogging, aside from determination and will. Three posts a week are ideal, but I do post four times a week. If I am not in the mood, three are enough. Everybody should have a blog, I suppose.
CreditCard Processing says
Determination, positive thinking and love what you are doing for me are the key to become successful.
I think the key to a successful blog are patience and content. Certainly, you won’t be making a lot of money in the first few months because you don’t have the amount of traffic just yet. Instead of trying to be depressed or upset that you aren’t making money yet, you have to patient because your blog will get traffic later on.
This leads to the second key, which is content. No matter how long you have been writing, if you are writing posts without valuable content, then, you won’t get the traffic you desired and won’t make a good income out of your blog.
This goes to say that patience and blog content go hand in hand. One without the other may be a cause to not create a successful, money-making blog.
Great point about making connection and be patient. I also wrote a post on how a person can pre-determine if she/he fits the role as a blogger before entering the blogging journey.