How To Make Money Blogging On WordPress for Beginners (And Grow Blog Traffic)
The question is, how do you start blogging for money?
When I started blogging, I admit that I thought of all the successful blogs I had seen and wondered if I could be them. In addition, I wanted to know if I had what it took to make thousands of dollars in blog revenue. Which would make my day job an option instead of a necessity. But is it possible to learn how to make money blogging on WordPress as a beginner?
I was willing to do whatever it took to make money with a blog. But this can be easier said than done when you start. One of the big reasons was working from home and making my schedule. I mean, who doesn’t want more day-to-day freedom?
As a beginner, I wanted to know how to make money blogging on WordPress. But, unfortunately, some bloggers will have you believe that you don’t until you reach a certain number of page views or followers.
You can monetize your blog. For example, I made money with my blog within its first few months and made thousands while learning the basics.
Going forward, I will tell you how you can make money blogging sooner rather than later.
Product or Service
Let’s start with one of the big ones—a product or service. Having a product or service is a great way to make money from day one.
You should have a good idea of your product or service. But, if not, there are several ways you can find out. The easiest way is to ask people in your target market what they want and then give it to them.
Another option is to look at successful brands similar to yours. Try to figure out what they’re doing that makes them successful. And finally, another easy way is to just make something up yourself. If you don’t know how to make something yet, start researching and learning as much as possible about it.
I have a great video that discusses how to determine the best product you should sell on your blog below. Give it a watch.
You can do several different things to create your products or services.
These are probably one of the most popular product types to sell to make money blogging. Many digital products can consist of online courses, workbooks, videos, ebooks, and other products that exist solely online. These are great because you create them once, then watch the cash roll in.
If you have a skill people are willing to pay for, you can sell it as a digital product. For example, if you’re a freelance writer, you could write an ebook about starting your own freelance writing business. Then you can sell it for $20.00 or so.
Ebooks are another great way to make money online. Like physical products, you must decide what kind of ebook you want to create. And then find a supplier who can help you put it together.
People will buy it to learn more about starting their own business. In addition, they’ll be happy to pay you $20.00 since they just saved themselves hundreds of dollars in research costs. And even better, once you’ve created your digital product, you can always give away copies for free to attract new customers.
If you already have your product idea, I say go for it! The downside to having a digital product is choosing the right product, and it’s time to create it. While you could make good money with this from day one, if you have a good product idea, make sure to take the time to do your research first.
Digital products are the route we went when it came to making products, and they continue to be a consistent income source for us each month. Read our blog income series to learn more about our products and how much we make each month from them.
Physical products never go out of style. If you have something people want to buy, you’re in business. Items can range from crafts and t-shirts to manufacturing your product to sell on your blog.
Buying online is hot right now. And sites like Shopify, Etsy, and Amazon, to mention a few, make it so easy to set up a store right on your blog. Selling a physical product is something you absolutely can do on day one.
Selling physical products is a bit more complicated than selling digital products, but it’s not impossible. It would help if you understood the downside: getting the product to sell it. If you are selling a physical product, you typically have to buy a bunch of that product in bulk before selling.
This requires money upfront. This is not always the case, such as through dropshipping. But it can be a pretty hefty price tag when starting, so choose your physical product wisely.
You first need to figure out what your product will be. And then find a supplier who can make it for you.
Once you have that figured out, you need to decide how much money you want to make off each item and then calculate all your costs, including labor and shipping. Suppose everything adds up correctly; congratulations. You have yourself a business!
These are similar to physical products in many ways, but there are also some significant differences. Digital or regular services are enticing because there is little upfront work to offer.
The first thing you need to do is figure out what kind of services you want to provide, and then you need to find a way to market yourself and attract customers. Then, create a page on your blog describing your service and wait for orders to come in.
I’ve seen people do this for consulting, coaching, brand awareness, social media management, email marketing, being a virtual assistant, and copywriting. As a freelance blogger, you have a lot of skills that other successful bloggers and businesses would love to use.
Once you’ve done that, it’s just like any other business!
If you have a skill others are willing to pay for, you can make money blogging by providing consulting services.
The most important thing is to figure out what kind of product or service your audience is looking for and then give it to them. For example, if you’re a writer, you could provide editing and proofreading services. Or, if you’re a musician, you could offer your own music.
If you’re a business owner, consider consulting with professional bloggers or offering them an affiliate commission to drive traffic to your site. New bloggers will be happy to know that companies are willing to pay people just like them to write content about their products and services.
For example, if you have experience in search engines, offer to write a post about search engine optimization (SEO) for $100-$200 per post. You can also consult businesses on how to use blogging as part of their overall marketing strategy.
You might even get hired full-time! If you use a tool like RankIQ, a service like this is possible. Want to know more about it? Read my review of RankIQ here.
WordPress is a popular way to set up a membership site because of its various plugins and tools. A membership website might be a good fit if you want to build an online store or service that customers can access through a subscription.
The best part about building a membership site with WordPress is the free WordPress theme, plugins, and available resources.
The downside? Creating a membership site takes time and money. You’ll need to invest in premium WordPress plugins and pay your web developer to install them properly. If you’re serious about starting a membership site, make sure it’s worth your time and money by choosing a topic that genuinely interests you.
That way, you’ll enjoy working on your project every day!
You can also write sponsored posts, which are paid for by companies. To do so, you will need to contact relevant companies that would like to have their products or services reviewed by you. Writing sponsored posts is a great way to start your blogging career and earn money.
Once they agree to pay you, you can write an honest review of their product or service. The best part about writing sponsored posts is choosing the topic you want to cover.
However, before agreeing to write a sponsored post, ensure your content aligns with the company’s wants. If not, there’s a chance you won’t be able to get any payment for your work.
Also, some sponsored posts may require you to include certain links in your content. This isn’t something you should worry about too much as long as those links don’t interfere with your overall message. It’s important to remember that every company has its guidelines regarding sponsored posts. Learn more about sponsored posts in my video below.
If you are interested in writing sponsored posts, you can approach companies directly. However, creating a sponsorship page is a good idea if you want a company to contact you first.
This will help attract potential sponsors who might be interested in your content. Ensure your sponsorship page is straightforward and easy to understand, so potential sponsors know precisely what they will get by contacting you.
You should also list your rates and any other requirements or guidelines regarding sponsored posts. You can even provide links to some of your past work so that potential sponsors can see examples of your previous work.
When deciding how much money you would like to charge for sponsored posts, it’s essential to consider how much time each post will take. After all, you don’t want to price yourself out of specific deals.
It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on what others are charging so that you can stay competitive. However, just because someone else is setting more doesn’t mean you should do so as well. Instead, use their pricing structure as a benchmark and determine whether or not you think your services are worth more than theirs.
I know this is a lot. But I share my tips on making money with sponsorship deals in my course Blogging Money Formula. You can learn more about it here.
Sponsored posts have to be one of my favorite ways to make money blogging, and it’s a simple way to make money blogging for beginners! It can be pretty lucrative if you do it right—you can make anywhere from $50 -$10,000+ for a single post.
If you wonder what a sponsored post is, it’s blog posts that you write on your blog that features a brand, and that company is paying you to do it. While the concept of sponsored posts is simple, it is not necessarily an easy road to cash. You must first find these opportunities by applying to them on various influencer networks or pitching them directly.
Not sure where to go to find influencer apps?
Once that is done, you must develop a blog topic your audience wants to enjoy that meets all the agreed-upon criteria with the sponsor. But then, the work isn’t over once you write the post.
You must also ensure it gets eyeballs, so the sponsors return for more partnerships. One way to do this is by sharing your post on various social media channels.
While it is work, it is so worth it! It looks good to work with big brands and mention them to people you work with later. But it all starts with getting the right opportunities.
If you want sponsored posts delivered directly to your inbox, you should sign up for the Blogging Money Update. This newsletter sends 30-45 opportunities per week, ranging from $50-$5,000. So finding excellent opportunities should not be hard to do!
Learn more about the Blogging Money Update here.
This is probably one of my favorite ways to make money blogging because it’s something I’ve done for years and continue to do today. You sign up with an affiliate network like Share-A-Sale, Clickbank, or even Amazon, create a product listing, and then send people through your site to buy that product.
If someone buys through your link, you get paid a percentage of the commission based on whatever sale price you set. So, promoting a $10 ebook might earn a 10% commission from every $10 purchase made.
You can also promote physical products as well as digital ones!
Sign up with an affiliate network. Your chosen platform will depend on your personal preferences and where your target audience might be most active.
Some platforms, like Share-A-Sale or Clickbank, have more than 50 affiliate programs, while others, like CJ Affiliate by Conversant or MaxBounty, only offer a handful.
Here is a list of affiliate websites and brands you can consider if you go into affiliate marketing with your blog.
- Commission Junction
- Rakuten Advertising
- Amazon Associates
- Impact Radius
- Affiliate Window (Awin)
- Affiliate Future
- BidVertiser etc.
In the subsequent section, we’ll discuss affiliate marketing networks like Amazon Associates. We hope you understand more about using these brands to make money from your blog.
The Amazon Associates Program is a free affiliate program that allows anyone to make money blogging by linking to Amazon products. When your readers click through your links and buy something, you get a small percentage of each sale.
It is one of many affiliate programs that allows you to earn money by recommending products from Amazon. When someone buys something after clicking a link you provided, you make a percentage of its sale price.
You can create links and place them wherever you want—on your site or social media accounts—or use other affiliate networks.
The more traffic you have to your website, the more likely people will click those links and buy what you recommend. And if you’re successful, you might even be able to quit your day job.
ShareASale or Clickbank
The process of creating a product listing is different depending on which affiliate network you choose.
For example, with Share-A-Sale, you’ll create your own custom landing page where people can purchase your product. On Clickbank, you’ll just link directly to their site and let them handle everything.
Send traffic through your site: Now that everything is set up, it’s time to drive traffic through your WordPress blog. You can do so by blogging about your product, sharing it with your target audience via social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, emailing friends and family members who might be interested in buying something like yours, etc.
If someone buys through your link, you get paid a percentage of the commission based on whatever sale price you set. So, promoting a $10 ebook might earn a 10% commission from every $10 purchase made.
What is the best way to go about it?
Okay, let’s talk about ways bloggers make money blogging with passive income: affiliate marketing. Here is how it works. First, you sign up for relevant affiliate programs on Shareasale and Affiliate Window channels. Here, you can find several brands willing to pay you for sales and leads from your blog.
Add affiliate links to relevant posts and promote your content as you usually would. You get paid for the lifetime of the article. Easy peasy!
Similar to sponsored posts, you must regularly share your blog posts to see the full benefits of affiliate marketing. I firmly believe in putting affiliate links in all your content just in case an article goes viral, which is affiliate marketing gold!
And, of course, make sure you add proper disclosures to all your content with affiliate links. Take a look at mine at the top of this post if you want an idea of what it should say.
If you want more tips on how to make money with affiliate marketing, watch my video, where I talk about how I made $4000 in affiliate income in one month.
Lastly is advertising. Everyone (non-bloggers) seems to think this is the primary way bloggers make money. And for those who are getting lots of traffic (and I mean like millions of page views every month). But if you are starting, you are probably just grateful to get ANYONE on your site, let alone hundreds or thousands of people.
Before you start your business, as we said earlier, get a WordPress website and start advertising your services. The easiest way is by joining a blogging network like Adsense etc.
They will place ads in your sidebar or footer and pay you every time someone clicks on them. This might not be much, but it’s an excellent way to make money while building up traffic for your site.
The excellent news about advertising on AdSense is that it doesn’t really require much work because you don’t have to find products that are relevant to your niche and write reviews about them. You can make some serious money if you have a lot of traffic.
You can think of more ways to monetize your site when you have enough traffic. For example, if you don’t want ads on your site, consider selling sponsored posts, as mentioned earlier, where companies can pay you to write about their products/services.
You can also sell banner space on your site. I recommend starting with these two methods as they are straightforward to implement and immediately give you a lot of exposure.
And once you get comfortable with making money from your site, you can move on to other things. The key here is hard work. There are no shortcuts to success when it comes to creating content online.
Establishing an ad network on your blog while growing your audience is vital. And here is why: every visitor’s click matters.
Let’s say it takes you a couple of months to get 1,000 visitors a month to your blog. If you waited until that third month to put ads on your site, you wasted all the clicks before that. On the other hand, if you implemented the ad platforms, you could’ve earned even a small amount.
There are thousands of different ad networks, but most fall into two categories: CPM and CPC. CPM stands for cost per thousand impressions and charges you every time someone sees your ad. CPC stands for cost per click and works by charging you every time someone clicks on your ad.
The nice thing about both types of advertising is that you only get paid when people engage with your ad. So if no one clicks on it, you don’t get paid anything. So these advertising forms are suitable, making them perfect for new bloggers who aren’t sure how popular their blogs will become.
There are a lot of ad networks that you can join. The best way is to sign up with multiple ad networks and rotate your ads so that they don’t get blocked by any one network. I suggest signing up with Google Adsense, Mediavine, Chitika, Adsterra, AdThrive, etc.
While ad platforms like Mediavine and AdThrive are for more established bloggers with over a certain number of sessions, Google Adsense is an excellent way to make money blogging for beginners. There aren’t many requirements to join, and the amount of traffic you receive doesn’t matter.
Win-win! Just don’t expect to make a ton with ads initially. However, your revenue in this area will grow as your blog grows.
You must create an account at each site and apply for their advertising program. Once approved, you can place their code in your sidebar or footer and make money. This might not be much, but it’s an excellent way to make quick cash when starting out.
Advertise your own website: If you already have a website, why not put it to work for you? For example, put banners on your website and link them to another site where people can click on them and purchase something.
Don’t forget to include social media buttons too. That way, if someone likes your content and wants to share it on Facebook/Twitter/Pinterest, they can easily do so without leaving your page.
Google AdSense ads
Google’s AdSense ads can be a great source of passive income.
Your money depends entirely on your site’s visitors and how often they click on an ad. So if you’re wondering whether it’s worth it, consider that some areas earn more than $100,000 per year through AdSense alone.
It’s not as easy as just clicking Advertise with Google, though. You need to have a website in good standing with high-quality content if you want to get approved by Google. Getting approval shouldn’t be hard if you have already run a popular website or built some notoriety online.
Just remember that there are no guarantees when it comes to making money with AdSense. Sometimes ads will work really well, and other times they won’t. Unfortunately, there’s no natural way to tell which ones will perform better until you try them out.
So, like any advertising service, AdSense is best used as part of a larger marketing strategy that includes SEO, social media promotion, and paid advertising. If you decide to give AdSense a shot, start slowly and watch your traffic closely so you can see what ads people respond to most.
To make money blogging, you need a website host to help you with your content. Mediavine is explicitly designed for bloggers who want to monetize their sites through advertising.
It’s easy to set up and provides plenty of tools to grow traffic. The rates depend on how much traffic you bring in, but it’s usually between $5 – $70 per 1,000 visitors.
You could earn thousands of dollars monthly if you have a high-traffic site. Plus, they provide hosting, so you don’t have to worry about getting hacked. They also have 24/7 support via live chat or email.
Mediavine is a powerful WordPress plugin that allows you to monetize your content and integrate ads throughout your website. But it can be a little tricky to set up. However, if you can eventually set it up, you will enjoy advertising with them.
Other advertising options: Chitika is another online advertising network similar to AdSense. Like AdSense, Chitika pays you based on how many people see your ads and click on them.
The service pays by pay-per-click, so your blog content will have to be popular enough that people want to click it.
Don’t expect big bucks from Chitika, but every little bit helps. You can also sign up as an affiliate and make money promoting other companies through their banner ads. This is one of my favorite methods because I don’t think bloggers should promote only their stuff using Chitika.
Chitika will allow you to simply turn your blog into a revenue-generating machine by placing ads. This can be a great way to monetize your blog, and it’s easy. All you need is a free account with Chitika. After that, just install their code onto your blog and earn money immediately.
If you’re looking for an alternative to Google AdSense, check out Chitika. You won’t regret it.
If you’re a blogger, Adsterra can help monetize your blog. This program has one of the best click-through rates in advertising.
You get paid every time someone clicks on an ad that is displayed on your blog. You also get paid when they click through and buy something from that site.
The better your blog content, the more traffic you will drive to it, which means more money. Adsterra pays out twice monthly, so there is no waiting around or wondering if you are getting paid.
They also have a referral program where you can earn 5% of the revenue generated by the publishers you refer to Adsterra for a LIFETIME! for each person who joins using your referral link.
They have excellent customer service and make it very easy to sign up. I highly recommend them. So make sure to put your referral link on all your social media accounts and tell everyone about how great Adsterra is, as that’s another way to generate income as an affiliate marketer.
All bloggers need to know about Adsterra because it’s an excellent way to start making money for blogging.
AdThrive is a viral WordPress plugin you can use to monetize your site.
It uses banner ads to make money. They offer pre-made templates so you can set them up with ease. It’s one of my favorite ways to monetize my blogs because it’s super simple and easy to use. It takes just minutes to get everything set up and working.
You get paid per ad click, and it’s pretty easy to set up. You don’t need any previous experience with affiliate marketing or blogging; it’s simple and straightforward. They also have social analytics to see how many clicks your ads get.
It’s free to sign up, and they pay via PayPal once you reach some earnings, which doesn’t take long. I recommend checking out AdThrive if you want to start making money from your website.
Guest blogging, or publishing on other people’s blogs, is a fantastic way to get your content in front of new audiences and increase traffic to your site.
Selling guest posting can be a profitable way to generate income from blogging. You can put up guest post adverts for a fee on your website if you have enough audience that the ‘guest’ would be interested in. I believe this income-generation method is for blogs with a stable listening audience.
Make sure you’re transparent about it so readers don’t feel misled. For example, you could lose their trust forever if they click through the guest post only to find that they landed on an affiliate page. So it’s important to let them know what links are included in each post, whether any affiliate links are included, and where those links lead.
This will help build trust with your audience and keep them coming back for more. You should also include social media sharing buttons at the end of every post, so people who like what they read can share it.
When you sell guest posts, you want to encourage people to link back to your website and yours. To do that, you need a clear call-to-action (CTA) at the bottom of each post. That CTA should tell readers exactly how to get in touch with you if they have questions or want to work together. For example: Contact me here if you’d like to discuss working together.
I look forward to hearing from you! This is an excellent example of a CTA.
Ad Space to Sell Ads Directly
When you don’t have a lot of traffic, it can be hard to convince advertisers that your content is an ideal place for them to sell their products. But when you get enough visitors to your site, they will knock at your door and offer to buy ad space directly from you.
You won’t make as much money as you would selling ads through Google AdSense or another intermediary, but it’s a great way to keep 100% of what you earn. And in some cases, you might find that companies are willing to pay more than third-party networks are willing to pay.
Money will definitely be made here if you get good at monetizing your site without driving away too many readers. Remember that if you decide to go down this route, you should avoid sites like Facebook and Twitter until you get really good at them.
People tend not to react well when seeing ads interrupting their social media experience. It’s also worth noting that advertising revenue can be pretty fickle, so even if you do everything right, sometimes you just won’t make any money. That’s why it’s essential to diversify your income streams with the many options we have provided.
If you have a talent or hobby that others are willing to pay for, then you can make money blogging by creating videos and posting them on your own YouTube channel and sharing a link to your blog post, driving your readers from your website to your blog.
You can even teach your readers something you are knowledgeable in by converting it to a video and asking people to watch it for free to better understand what you are trying to share with them.
For example, you could post design tutorials if you’re a graphic designer. Or, if you’re a musician, you could create music lessons. The most important thing is to figure out what kind of product or service your audience is looking for and give it to them!
We’ve recently gotten monetized on YouTube ourselves. Check out our YouTube channel here.
You should consider podcasting if you enjoy advising people or talking in general. Podcasts are one of the new absolute money-making methods to not only share valuable content online with your audience.
Podcasts are also one of my favorite ways to make money blogging because they’re so easy. If you have a talent or hobby that other people are willing to pay for, then you can create an audio or video podcast about it and post it on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and/or Stitcher.
For example, if you’re a musician, then you could record yourself playing covers of popular songs and upload them to iTunes. Or, if you’re a writer, you could record yourself reading your short stories.
The most important thing is to figure out what kind of product or service your audience is looking for and then give it to them, as we said earlier.
The best part is that you can use a podcast plugin with your website so your blog audience can listen to you directly from your website instead of going through the podcast directories we mentioned above. But we recommend sharing your podcast on your website and the guides to generate revenue on all fronts.
Learning how to make money blogging on WordPress as a beginner takes time. There is no myth about that here. But that does not mean that you shouldn’t pursue monetization options early. Start with advertising as soon as your blog is set up and has a couple of posts.
After that, make your way to affiliate marketing and start pitching brands for sponsored opportunities as you build on your blogging habits. Finally, as you become more established with an extensive email address list, then, and only then, should you pursue creating a product.
But you want to ensure that even though you have money on your mind, you are still establishing all the beginner blogging basics, such as ensuring your site is set up correctly, your branding is in place, and you are regularly creating content for your blog.
And most importantly, make sure you have goals in mind.
Download my free worksheet that prompts you to write down your blog goals for the year with the signup form below. Once you have your goals in mind, I am confident you’ll be able to start making money with your blog in no time at all!
What questions do you have about how to make money on WordPress? I would love to know more about your blogging journey! I promise to reply.