Blog monetization basics

So you’ve established your blog, traffic is flowing in and you want to start making some money from it.

monetize blog

That’s great! But do you know how to monetize a website and which option would be best for you? I see that there is some confusion among new and potential bloggers.

So, how to monetize your blog? It’s time to give some answers and ideas.

The good news is that you can do it in multiple ways. And while there are numerous options available, I’ll pay attention to the most popular ones in this article.

But before we begin, remember one important thing! Will the promoted product or service actually be of some value to your readers? Will it help them to solve a problem? Or are you doing it just to sell something and make some money?

The second approach is a bad one with a short-term thinking. This will make you look like a pure seller that has no interest in his audience.

Also, don’t be too aggressive with marketing if it’s a brand new blog and you’re just starting to build an audience. A popup with some offer, seconds after a visit, may not be the best idea.

Now then, let us look at some ways on how to monetize a blog.


This is one of the most popular ways on how to monetize a site. And it’s probably also the easiest one.

how to earn money online with google

Most of you have probably already heard of it, but to keep it beginner friendly let us look up what it actually is.

Google Adsense is CPC (cost per click) advertising program that allows anyone to insert small code in their site and have adds displayed that are relevant to the published content. Once a visitor clicks on that add you’ll receive a commission.

Not only that, you’ll earn also from impressions CPM (cost per mille). Which means you’ll get a commission for 1000 ad impressions.

Yes, it’s that simple, anyone can do it without any technical skills.

Although it’s easy, you do need good traffic for Adsense to be effective. I’d recommend at least 300 daily readers – the more the better.

Affiliate links

Another very popular way to monetize a blog is the use of affiliate links.

You need to register in an affiliate network, pick a product or service to promote and get your tracking url. After that, you can insert it into your blog posts, landing pages, link images, emails etc.

There are thousands of networks available, so you can find virtually anything to promote. Most of those offers will give commission for successful product/service sales. But there can also be found offers that reward you for registrations.

Rewards for those, of course, will be lower than product/service sales. And it’s also possible to lose the access to that offer if you send over bad traffic.

Bad traffic, in this case, is a registration that will not convert to a sale later. E.g. your redirected visitor makes a registration in a dating site, but does not buy any paid features there. So, if your leads are mostly like that, then in some cases you could get blocked out from that affiliate offer.

While there are thousands of networks, some of the most popular affiliate networks that I can mention are:

These are well established and respectable networks with lots of merchants, so you’ll easily find a product(s) that would appeal to your niche.

Amazon associates program

This is related to the affiliate links section. But, as this is a very popular and trusted network, I decided to separate it.

You definitely must have heard of Amazon as it’s the biggest online shop in the world. You’ve even probably ran into multiple pages that utilize this program and earn through it.

The good thing is that you can promote virtually anything as Amazon has such wide variety of goods. So you can use it with a wide variety of niches.

Also, if the visitor will not buy your promoted product you can still earn from him if he purchases anything else while the set-cookie lasts.

The bad side is that commissions for sales are limited with a percentage. Where for quite a few products those are quite low. So, many products will not be that profitable unless you have specific and large traffic.

Here are current percentage rates for Amazon products:

CategoryCommission percentage
Video Games & Video Game Consoles1%
Televisions, Digital Video Games2%
PC, PC Components, DVD & Blu-Ray2.50%
Amazon Fire Tablet Devices, Dash Buttons, Amazon Kindle Devices4.00%
Physical Books, Health & Personal Care, Sports, Kitchen, Automotive, Baby Products4.50%
Digital Music, Grocery, Physical Music, Handmade, Digital Videos5.00%
Outdoors, Tools5.50%
Headphones, Beauty, Musical Instruments, Business & Industrial Supplies6.00%
Apparel, Amazon Element Smart TV (with Fire TV), Amazon Fire TV Devices, Jewelry, Luggage, Shoes, Handbags & Accessories, Watches, Amazon Echo Devices7.00%
Furniture, Home, Home Improvement, Lawn & Garden, Pets Products, Pantry8.00%
Amazon Fashion Women, Men & Kids Private Label, Luxury Beauty, Amazon Coins10.00%
All Other Categories4.00%

As you can see, some product categories are worth more than others.

If you do decide to start a blog focused around Amazon, then I highly recommend easyAzon WordPress plugin. It’s invaluable for a blog that mainly focuses around amazon for monetization.

It will really help you out with your affiliate link management and will generally save time and hassle.

A neat feature to generate more commissions with this plugin is link localization. This way you’ll not waste your international traffic. Plus your readers will be able to add products to cart straight from your website. This provides additional prolonged cookie advantages.

To learn more about easyAzon – check it out.

To learn more about this monetization choice check out amazon associates program guide.

Subscription based services

This one is a bit more advanced way on how to monetize a website. So I wouldn’t recommend it for beginners. At least not at the beginning of their blogging journey.

But as this is quite a popular method I had to mention it anyway.

This, with some exceptions, works in these two ways. You either provide a service or exclusive content to your readers for a fee. Or you provide a product that is subscription based or has extra paid features.

Either way, this is not the easiest way of monetization and most probably will need a well-established audience and a lot of work.

Running an online store and/or providing own product

This one is also quite a popular way of monetization.

The most traditional way on how to approach it is to provide your own product(s) or run a dropshipping site.

Some words about the later one as many of you may not have heard of it. Dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where you don’t keep the products that you are displaying on your blog.

Instead, when someone purchases a product listed on your site, you purchase it from a third party and ship it directly to the customer.

xThis way you don’t physically handle any product you display on your blog.

If you decide to make a blog with a store, then I strongly suggest you use – Shopify.

It’s really easy to set up a store as you don’t even need to have any technical knowledge. All software and hosting is provided by Shopify. And their staff is very forthcoming if you run into any kind of problems.

They have well made SEO and marketing tools that will help you to reach your audience better.

Another nice feature is their abandoned cart recovery service. It tracks and emails these customers reminding about their cart. This can potentially help to generate more revenue.

To learn more about Shopify – check it out.

These would be the most popular ways on how to monetize your blog. Do remember that it’s wise to make multiple income streams if you want to rely on a steady income.

It’s hard to predict the future. And you can’t know for sure when some changes could come and greatly affect your income model. So it’s best to diversify your money making sources for risk management.

Don’t forget to share!


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