The answer is yes. However, I would caution against it. The reason is, when you use a free service, you don’t have as much control over your blog—the free service does. This can be risky, especially if you will rely on your blog for income. A self-hosted WordPress blog is my recommendation and can be started very inexpensively. See my step-by-step tutorial here.
I have a blog that uses a wordpress theme, and blue host hosts my domain name. However, I don’t really understand what a platform is and I don’t know what my platform is. I am planning to start a new food blog with a different focus and use wordpress.org (whatever that actually means.) Does wordpress.org help you with setting up and explaining whether or not they are your platform? I am a granny (79 to be exact.) I have a three year old cooking blog that never gets visitors except for family and friends. I would like to do better with my blog, but I don’t even understand the idea of platform. Can you give me some advice as to how to proceed?
The income from affiliate marketing is almost entirely passive. You don’t have to worry about creating products, supporting customers, or any of the technical complexity of selling your own products or services. You can also invest the time you save into growing your traffic, leading to more revenue later.
Same thing with guest blogging. If your post is good, you’re in. The editor won’t even look at your blog, most likely. Or if they do, it’ll be a cursory glance just to make sure you don’t have anything offensive on your site.
Hi, Teodora! We will be launching our updated Building a Framework course on March 7th that I think could be very helpful. It will be here when the time comes: https://justagirlandherblog.com/framework/. Thanks and good luck on your blogging journey!
Thanks so much for the input! I think the number of posts will vary for each person. My blog first started to gain some traction around the end of my second month or beginning of the third, so I had written about 20 posts by then, and then it grew steadily from there. Some other bloggers might see traction sooner, others much later. It just really depends on the quality of the content and amount of energy people put into promoting it. I’m sorry I can’t give a more specific answer! I hope this helps! Have a great day!
However, using a WordPress ad management plugin can make the process easier. We recommend BuySellAds, a marketplace that matches up website owners and advertisers. There’s also a free BuySellAds WordPress plugin that gives you a simple way to insert the ads on your site with widgets and shortcodes.
Personally, I think that the most lucrative way to earn money from your blog is to use your blog as a marketing tool and stepping stone, rather than the whole shebang. Branching out also helps you to grow your blog in general, because it increases your presence around the web (and the world). So, what do I mean by “branching out”? Here are some examples of how you could use your blog to gain income and create more followers:
I like your blog. Im not making much money from my blog yet but what has been working for me so far are putting adsense ads on the top and bottom of posts and also using affiliate advertising (blue host, flex Offers).
Hi Jamie, this is great. I am totally new to the idea of blogging for myself and your website is clear and jargon free. From everything I have read, it seems it’s about having a subject you are either very knowledgeable in or are passionate about and then sharing that information with other people who may find it useful through blog posts. Once the audience are there, then looking at ways to monetise through audience numbers, if I’ve got it right?
Definitely not mandatory! The majority of bloggers don’t share income reports. We had just learned so much from other bloggers who had, so before we started making much at all, we started sharing our income in hopes that following our journey would help others be able to figure out this whole money and blogging thing too! Best of luck with your blog!
Writing a post contains 2000 – 3000 words may be a bit difficult to me. But i must realize that nothing can be achieved without hard working. If we write a long valuable content like this, there is a great chance for bookmarking the page. So it is a great innovative strategy.
Hi! This was hands down one of the most helpful posts I’ve ever read about how to make blogging a realistic career path. I love how honest and open you were in both suggesting the good but reminding me of the bad choices out there, some of which I know I would/have made. I found your blog after hanging my head from another post on yet another site saying to forget about blogging as your source of income. Completely ignoring that advice and seeking out some that matched my determination, I found yours and so glad I did! Thank you again for this awesome post – it’s officially made it into my favorites bar to come back to.
Jon, great post. I can tell you put a lot of time and effort into it. A very good read and you are right – I have been afraid to call myself a blogger up to now because most people don’t take you seriously. From today I will shout from the rooftops ‘Yes I’m a blogger’ 🙂
It’s my responsibility. If people are ever going to respect blogging as a legitimate business model, those of us who are successful have to speak up and share what we’ve learned. None of us works in a vacuum. The only way we can advance our field as a whole is to collectively share what we’ve learned.
Anybody who’s been online for a while has heard the term “VALUE” at least a million times. Yet, only a few of us know “WHAT” value IS. I’ve generated a substantial amount of subscribers over the years, but my relationship with them was lacking, because I didn’t fully grasp the concept of giving value.
1) Your niche selection is extremely important. You probably won’t be able to make money helping people watch better quality TV. But you could help them lose weight or be more productive and make a bunch of money in the process. Making money is not limited to helping other people make money.
Research topics using some of the research tools such as Google Trends, Google Keyword Search Tool, Wordtracker and see if other people are searching for that topic too. If there are copiously, competitions could be hard.
With an email list , it is easy to build a brand , highly recommend products , promote any events/workshops that you can be holding even more importantly to can really encourage people to keep coming back to your website .
#18 – By Regina – $16,382 in January of 2015 – I think I read that Regina no longer publishes income reports, but older ones on her site are very detailed. She earns the bulk of her money from her own products (courses, eBooks, physical planners, live seminars) and some affiliate income.
You can begin accepting donations in a few different ways. You could add a Paypal donate button or a Stripe donate button to your website. Or for a more professional look and advanced features like email marketing integration, you could use WPForms to create a donation form on your WordPress site.
I signed my first direct brand partnership with Fannie Mae in late 2017 to help bust the myths of homeownership. I also sold 14 SEO clients directly from the website (or more specifically, this one post on the best SEO tips and this Rockstar Finance thread on SEO). Of those 14, four of them were very profitable SEO engagements. In 2017, I also had the opportunity to help four of the top 20 finance bloggers in the world with SEO issues, so I was both able to add some value and peek under the hood of some really successful money blogs (win-win). Finally, two finance companies also hired me for consulting gigs that took very little of my time but were a lot of fun. In total, I have really scaled back my consulting work and plan to only work with a few brands and other bloggers in 2018, not because I’m not interested, but because it takes so much of my time. Stay tuned for an SEO for bloggers course dropping soon.
I would suggest you one thing. It would be better to post the income reports each month. After few months, you would have a considerable post and when someone will need to see the income proof, he or she will come to your site. You may get linking to your posts.
Sharing your blog content on social media is an art. There is no right way to do it. People have success sharing blog content in their own unique ways. Some will share only their blog links on social media. Others will share a high percentage of unique content on social media.
I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around this one. I was blown away that you don’t have ads on your site. I have ads on my site and I’m reading along thinking your advice is to forget the ads and sell products. As a food blogger, my mind goes to e-cookbooks, actual hold-in-your-hand cookbooks, books on how to start a food blog and how to do food photography. But according to this post, those I should sell later…the cheaper products. I can’t think of what “services” I could offer, other than offering to come over and cook for them (not happening) and I’m not quite an expert at offering services of personally coaching someone’s food blog. Maybe I’m just too green for that 🙂 Am I missing the point?
Hey Dena! Just hit publish!! I was scared like you too when I first started this blog. But the more you publish and write, the easier it gets and the more comfortable you will be finding your voice. What are your goals for starting a blog? Mine was to share my journey, help others and monetize. You could read this post too – it’s how I worked full time but was a part time blogger and outlines my schedule (warning – it was a little crazy!)
Here at Smart Blogger, we strive for one dollar per subscriber per month in sales, and I think that’s a good place to start when you’re a beginner too. In other words, an email list of 1,000 subscribers should result in at least $1,000 per month in sales, 10,000 subscribers would result in $10,000 per month in sales, and so on.
I LOVE your income reports. As an accountant I totally nerd out to your posts and love learning about how you manage your business! Such a great idea, plus so helpful for blogging babies such as myself! =) Thank you for all the inspiring you do for newbie bloggers.
Great Post Jon! I laughed out loud at Lesson#17. I launched a product from my blog that resulted in 0 sales. I will definitely use the tips that you mentioned here going forward in my blogging and business efforts.
You deducted $5 for Google as a blog expense. But didn’t you mention in your article that you also pay for your domain and a wordpress website? Do you still pay for those, and if so, how much per month? I was wanting to start blogging, but the whole decision on going with a free site or paying for one still has me in limbo. Also, do you have a domain or website you recommend? Thanks.
Congrats on making some money! I’m terrible about affiliate stuff, so the money I make is often from cash back site referrals. (Mr. Rebates gives you an amount equal to 20% of your referrals’ rebates. No time limit.)