|How To Monetize Your Blog. ...|
This is the eighth post in my series How To Start A Blog. There are several things you need to know and things you need to do before you can apply this lesson. To see the other posts of the series, click the Make Money tab at the top of this blog or click here.
Signing up for Google AdSense is free. You will need your Gmail email address to open your account. The sign-up is easy and you shouldn't have any problems. MAKE SURE you verify your account - this is a process of Google making a withdrawal and then a deposit back into your bank account. There will also be a tax form to fill out.
Google AdSense ads are called Pay-Per-Click ads. To make money, all you have to have is for someone to click on the ad. (Please don't click on ads on your own site or blog - Google can spot this and you could be banished.)
How much money do you make? That all depends on the ads. Google attempts to match ads to the content of your blog or site. If you are in an obscure category, the ads will pay pennies because demand for that category is low. If you are in a highly competitive category, ad clicks can be worth dollars.
If you generate a high volume of traffic to your site, you will get clicks. High volume means thousands of hits a day. Right now, you may just be shooting to get your monthly page views to have a comma in the figure. That's OK, we all started somewhere.
To make money with Google AdSense, you need to build traffic to your site. Period.
Placing the ads is easy. In your back room, there is a tab MONETIZE and you can set everything up from there.
Affiliate Marketing Ads
These are the banner ads you see on most websites and blogs. You get the ads by becoming an Affiliate of a company. If you look at the very bottom of a company's website in the tiny print you will see "Affiliates". You can click on that and examine their program and decide if you want to join. All Affiliate programs are free to join.
The company will provide you with a variety of ads and the code for them - different sizes and offers. You select which ones you'd like on your site, copy the HTML code and paste it into an HTML code gadget under DESIGN > ADD A GADGET on your blog back room. You can drag the ad to the appropriate area on your blog, based on size.
These ads are called Pay-Per-Action (PPA) - which means a transaction has to occur for you to make money. A visitor that clicks on the ad on your site will be directed to a special area of the company's website and the URL will include you account code. If the visitor buys something, you get a commission. Commissions can range from 1% to 25%. Most commissions are in the single digits. High commissions are on big ticket items, like a home gym that might cost thousands of dollars. Big ticket items don't sell every day, so you may be better off with products or services that sell quicker or are impulse buys.
This process of getting set up with Affiliate programs for a number of companies can be time-consuming and tedious. To simplify the process, go to a consolidator. These are firms that negotiate Affiliate agreements with hundreds of companies. So, you can sign up with one company and have your pick of dozens of possible advertisers to put on your site.
The three most popular consolidators are:
There are hundreds of consolidators out there. You can simply search Google for them. If you find one you really like, email me. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
TIP: Don't go wild and load your site up with ads. Most of the recommendations I've read say that one to three advertisers are good. See if those ads work for you. If they don't work, change the advertisers or find different offers from the advertisers. Affiliate ads and getting them to work are a process of trial and error. Be patient. Experiment. Don't get locked into a losing strategy. Be willing to change.
My banner ads get few clicks and even fewer conversions. Although, my site traffic has soared in the last couple months and the Google AdSense ads are producing. I may even drop the banner ads altogether. But I plan on trying a few different advertisers first.
You can sell ads to people or companies to put on your site. The only way you can do this is to have lots of traffic to your site and be able to prove it. What you charge is up to you. I haven't investigated the going rates for full banners as opposed to 125 X 125 postage size ads yet because my traffic is not high enough. Your traffic volume determines what you can charge. If you have tens of thousands of visitors a day, you can charge a lot more for ads. I'll update this post when I know more about appropriate rates to charge.
You may be an artist, a potter or you make fishing lures. Or maybe you produce classes on a particular topic and can make DVD's of the classes. You can sell those on your site. Set up a PayPal account and you can get buttons to put on your site.
You can also sell other people's goods, like eBooks.
The best place to find eBooks and digital material is through ClickBank.
You get paid a commission every time an item sells. See the program details for payment and commission rates for the particular product you choose to sell.
This is another free program. You can get set up with it under the MONETIZE tab in your blog's back room. Just like the PPA ads, if someone buys something from Amazon through the link on your site, you will get paid a commission.
I used Amazon Associates on a couple other sites I had and had no success. However, I also had little or no traffic on those sites. Now, there are books that relate to topics I write about and adding Amazon books to my site will be my next step.
Those are the five basic ways to make money with your blog.
- Google AdSense
- Affiliate Marketing Ads
- Sell Advertising on your site
- Sell Merchandise on your site
- Amazon Associates
For the other lessons in the How To Start A Blog program, click on the Make Money tab at the top of this blog or click here.
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