How to make $1,000 a month blogging

December 31, 2020

 

These days, blogging can be a lot more lucrative than you may think. I first started this blog back in September 2019 and was making money from it within the very first month. Since then, I haven't looked back, and now regularly earn over $1,000 a month blogging - something I never thought would possible. Here are my top tips on how to turn your blog into a stable side hustle. 


Write for your reader


This is a pretty basic tip, but it's one I read somewhere when I started my blog that has stuck with me ever since.

You're reading this post in order to find out how to monetise your blog - not just to read the story of how I monetised mine.

Hooking  your reader and getting that all-important click for pageviews and sessions is all about writing for them - you need to be offering them something, whether it be advice, or recommendations they simply can't turn down.

As a large section of my blog is focused on books, you can see this most clearly in the angling of my 'top book lists' posts (which make up the majority of my site content). I don't write about my favourite books; I write about new releases, compile lists of the most popular books in certain genres, etc.

This is all because I know my reader is more interested in, and therefore more likely to click on, a post angled towards them and books they would like to read, rather than towards myself and my own interests.



Popular posts 


In my advice on growing your #bookstagram post (click to read), I talked about the importance of finding your niche, and it's the same with blogging.

This one takes time, but you simply have to write and write and write until you notice trends in what posts gather the most traffic.

For me, it is my 'top book lists' and 'top new releases' which my readers seem to love the most. Once I had that figured out, I made sure to stick with it to ensure that all of my posts were bringing my site good traffic. I still write book reviews and other bookish posts, but I know that these are less likely to get clicks and therefore will bring in less revenue. 



Promote on social media 

I had my bookstagram account before starting my blog, which definitely helped kickstart my pageviews from absolutely nothing at first.

I would recommend starting up a few social platforms alongside your blog in order to reach the widest audience possible.

Remember, this is all about building traffic. There's no question of monetisation until the traffic is secured.


The power of Pinterest


Pinterest gets to be a tip all on its own because it is the ultimate secret to my blogging success! I used to hate Pinterest - I found it so confusing and had no idea how it worked. I saw bloggers constantly talking about how great it was, and I never understood. But then, all of a sudden, it clicked.

The majority of my traffic now comes from Pinterest, and without it, I would never have got enough pageviews/sessions to be able to monetise my site in the way I have.

I use Canva to make pins of my content, using different designs with stock images (and sometimes my own, like the ones scattered throughout this post).

I would recommend pinning around 20 pins of your own content a day, and you are guaranteed to start to see a rise in traffic pretty quickly.


Join an ad network

I originally monetised this site using trusty old Google Adsense, which was completely fine, but after spending some time on the blogosphere I started to hear about the perks of joining other ad networks.

At the beginning of January 2020 I signed with Mediavine, one of these ad networks. I'd heard so much about their unbelievably high RPMs that I had to see - and believe it - for myself. And I'm now earning a lot more money from the ads on my site compared to what I was making with Adsense - in fact, the revenue is so much higher that it is pretty incomparable. 

This is where the traffic to your blog is so important for monetisation - these higher paying ad networks usually have minimum pageviews/sessions requirements before you can apply to join. Mediavine's used to be 25,000 sessions per month, but has now gone up to 50,000. So you really need to focus on building your traffic from the very beginning in order to sign with one of these networks before you will start to earn some serious money online. 



Do sponsored work 


Once you have started to gain traffic to your blog, you're bound to have brands reach out for promotional work.

I'm a firm believer that if you are doing such work for a brand or a publisher then you are well within your rights to expect a fee in return. Writing blog posts and producing other forms of content can be serious work, especially if a brand has certain requests for the feature.

Plenty of bloggers make a media kit which they feature on their site, which breakdowns their average page views and followers/reach on other social media platforms for potential brands to see.


This is then used as a basis for charging fees related to the work completed.

Don't get me wrong -  I accept gifts from brands and publishers all of the time without asking for a fee in return. It depends on the requests of the brand - if they specifically want me to dedicate a post/feature their product on Instagram, then I will charge for this work. However, if products are gifted with no obligation to post, then I will of course accept and usually feature them on my blog/socials as a courtesy anyway. 

Click here and here for some examples of promotional work I have done with brands on Instagram (which is where I focus this type of work). Although my income from ads on my blog is much more steady (and 100% where I make the most money), these one-off promotions can be a great way to earn a little extra.




Those are my top tips for monetising your blog. But most importantly, remember to have fun with it - the joy of blogging is that it can become a source of income but remain fun at the same time. 

And as always - add me on Goodreads and Instagram for more stackedshelves!

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