When people ask me this, I usually just give them the short answer — advertisers. And while that’s certainly a large part of it, it’s not the only way bloggers earn. So today I’m breaking down for you the primary ways bloggers earn an income from home, in case you’re one of those people who didn’t know that blogs can make you money.
#1 – Ad Networks
Ad networks are often the main earner for many bloggers and definitely the easiest to maintain because it’s possible to “set it and forget it” once it’s in place. Bloggers sign up with popular ad networks like Google Adsense or Media.net and place code in the sidebar, header, footer, or inside posts that will display third party advertisements. These usually pay bloggers a certain amount per thousand impressions or a certain amount per click.
#2 – Direct Advertising
Bloggers often sell advertising directly instead of, or in addition to, using ad networks. What this means is that the blogger is in direct contact with specific advertisers and will be able to negotiate rates and approve or disapprove advertisers based on whether or not what the advertiser wants to promote is a fit for their audiences.
With ad networks, the blogger doesn’t have as much control over these things, so many bloggers do prefer direct advertising because of the amount of control they have.
#3 – Affiliates
This is another form of advertising, but instead of getting paid a flat rate or a certain amount per click or impression as you do with advertisers, the blogger gets paid a certain amount per lead or per sale of what they are promoting. For example, I’m signed up with the ShopHer affiliate network (as are many bloggers) because they have a lot of paid survey and money-saving offers that will appeal to my readers. I can earn a commission every time I link to one of their offers on this blog and use the affiliate link they provide that is unique to that offer.
Then, if a reader clicks through the link and buys or signs up for what I recommended, I will earn a small amount of money per lead or per sale!
As a blogger, you have complete control over what products and services you want to promote as an affiliate, so it is possible to only recommend things you approve of.
#4 – Selling Your Own Products & Services
A blog is an excellent platform for selling your own stuff. I know many bloggers that offer services like coaching, graphic design, virtual assisting, and writing. Bloggers can also sell products like e-books they’ve written or crafts they’ve made.
Another idea – If you are involved in any direct sales opportunity (example: Chloe + Isabel jewelry or similar) you can use your blog as a platform to promote those items and/or build your downline.
#5 – Sponsored Posts
I don’t do a lot of these here, but many bloggers earn money by writing posts paid for by advertisers to promote the products and services of different companies. Most bloggers can charge hundreds of dollars for these because it’s a form of permanent advertising for the company the post is written for. However, sponsored posts must be disclosed as sponsored so the reader understands when they see the post that it was paid for by the company.
Most bloggers do not do this for just any advertiser and are very selective because it would reflect badly on them to help promote a company that isn’t that awesome.