Why Does Blogging Make Money?

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“It’s pretty easy to make an extra $500 – $2,000 per month blogging in your first year.”

Have you ever seen these phrases on the internet? It sounds so sweet, right? Unfortunately, that’s not true because the blog itself does not make any money.

A blog is just a tool to “sell” products/services.

Then, how people make money from their blogs? Here are the most common ways to make money through blogs:

  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Display Ads
  • Sponsored Posts
  • Sell Digital Products
  • Sell Freelance Services

Let’s start with the simple formula of passive income with Affiliate Marketing!

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DISCLOSURE: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a small commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no additional cost to you. Please read my full disclaimer here for more info.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting other people’s or company’s products/services. You find a product you like, promote it to others, and earn a percentage of the sale as a commission.

The easiest way to start affiliate marketing is to sign up for an affiliate network. ShareASale is my favorite affiliate network because it’s beginner-friendly.

The simple formula of passive income with Affiliate Marketing is PV x CTR x CVR.

  • PV = Pageview
  • CTR = Click-through rate
  • CVR = Conversion Ratio

Related Post: How to Make Money with Affiliate Marketing

Display Ads

Typically, bloggers sign up with a third-party display advertising network or sell space directly on their website.

Third-party display advertising has some requirement such as:

  • Mediavine – requires a minimum of 25,000 website sessions per month
  • AdThrive – require a minimum of 100,000 pageviews/month
  • Google AdSense – has no requirement for website sessions and/or pageview per month

Because of that, most bloggers start from Google AdSense even though it’s very low pay.

In addition, Google Adsense will only pay you when your Adsense account reaches above $100.

Sponsored Posts

Businesses ask the influencer to promote their product directly in exchange for compensation. That’s called Sponsored Posts. The compensation is based on a contract between businesses and bloggers.

These are some example of sponsored posts:

  • Shoutouts
  • Host Giveaways
  • Product Reviews
  • How-To Tutorials
  • Become Brand Ambassador

Some bloggers use their blog posts as a portfolio and apply up for freelance writing jobs. Some bloggers sign up for influencer networks to get hired by brands. Some bloggers apply for affiliate programs to get offers directly from the business.

I think sponsored posts are more realistic ways to make money compared to other methods.

Sell Digital Products

Digital products like eBooks, online courses, printables, stock photography, and templates are super popular right now!

For example, some people use a graphic design platform called Canva and sell their social media graphics, presentations, posters, documents, and other visual content.

Here are some popular Canva related digital products on Creative Market:

  • Pinterest graphics templates
  • Instagram graphics templates
  • Presentation infographics

Sell Freelance Services

Some bloggers sell their own services and/or virtual assistant services on the blogs. What kind of services are popular now?

Here are some examples:

  • Writing services
  • Administrative services
  • Graphic design services
  • Social media management services
  • Create custom WordPress plugins
  • Build original apps

You can learn how to become a freelance graphic designer and/or how to become a software developer without going to school.

These 5 methods are some of the examples to make money on blogs!

OK, now why the free blogging platform can’t make money?

This is a pretty common question on the internet, “why the free blogging platform can’t make money?”

Well… it’s not 100% impossible to make money with a free blogging platform, but most affiliate companies and display ads accept an application for their own domain bloggers.

If you want to make money from display ads or sponsored posts, you better have your own domain blog.

So, how much does it really cost to run a blog (with your own domain)?

This blog, Happier Freelancing costs:

  • Domain name $9.06 a year
  • EasyWP WordPress include managed hosting for $22.88 a year

(9.06 + 22.88) / 12 = $2.66 a month.

I paid around $3 to run this blog. Not so bad, right? Depend on the domain name, the prices vary but the first year of the domain registration fee is always super cheap. (domain fee is not fixed)

The most popular WordPress hosting for a beginner is Bluehost.

It’s the #1 recommended host by WordPress and has more than enough features to do everything. There are different types of servers to host a website and all at different price points, but web hosting doesn’t need to be expensive, especially for personal bloggers.

I’ve created the 6 best cheap web hosting services comparison here if you are interested.

Wrapping Up

The downside to starting a blog is that you’ll need some patience. If you’re a beginner, allow 6 months to make a few dollars a month, 12 months to make a part-time income, and 24 months to make a full-time income.

If you are interested in starting a profitable blog, here is a step-by-step guide. Happy blogging!

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