So you have created a proper, fully-functioning blog. Now you’re probably wondering how to grow it and make money from your work.
All bloggers (especially the inexperienced ones) will eventually have this question on their mind. While creating and designing a new blog is fun and can be done in a relatively short time, growing the blog is a long term process that needs both time and effort.
In this article, I will present some pointers on how to grow your blog, so you could start making money from it.
It All Comes Down to Traffic
First of all, it is crucial to know that traffic is the most important element of every commercial blog. The greater the traffic your blog has, the greater your chance to monetize it.
Website traffic itself comes from various places on the internet, such as search engines, social media, forums, and many more.
I strongly advise you to use Google Analytics to monitor your site’s traffic. This tool has everything you need to help you gain useful insights. You can monitor the number of visitors you get from search engines, referrals, email marketing campaigns, etc.
In fact, some monetization methods are heavily influenced by your site’s traffic. Here are some examples of these methods:
1. Google AdSense
Google AdSense is the most common method used by bloggers to gain passive income. This method provides “rental ad space” on a blog.
An advertiser will bid its price to get their product advertised. If they win, their ads will be shown on blogs and websites that use AdSense.
For each click on the ad, you will get around 68% of the commission while the rest is taken by Google. Definitely not a bad method to gain income, right?
However, this method is heavily influenced by traffic. Since it requires a “click” from the visitors, it would be difficult to get money when nobody visits your site.
2. Affiliate Program
One of the greatest methods to monetize a blog is by persuading your visitors to buy a particular product and get a commission from it. All you need to do is promote the product via a custom affiliate link.
This method can produce bigger income than AdSense. However, how can you persuade others to buy a product if no one sees the promotion?
3. Sponsored Content
Some bloggers will create sponsored content to gain income. It could be an in-depth review, a hands-on video, or a comparison article.
This can bring more awareness to the brand, which will help to increase sales. Here is an example of a sponsored post created by The Telegraph for IKEA.
Creating sponsored content is an excellent method to get money. That being said, all brands want to work with well-established content creators that have a big audience.
What Do You Need to Have to Get Started?
Growing a blog is not something you can do overnight. It does require a lot of time and effort. Keep in mind, that there are various strategies to explore, so you will surely achieve your goals.
Before getting started, there are at least three important things to note. Those things are:
As I have said, growing a blog is time-consuming. Therefore, it should be treated as a passion project instead of a chore.
In addition, blogging is a long learning process that needs constant scrutiny and willingness. Working on it half-heartedly will only make your project harder to handle.
I suggest you follow your own passion rather than pursue a trend since it will be more fun to create and develop something that you are really interested in.
Producing original content, maintaining your site’s speed, and enhancing its appearance will take a lot of your time. It is better to set a neatly-arranged daily schedule rather than waiting for the right mood.
Moreover, you need to understand that it could take years to get significant attention from the market or to have your big break. So, you need to make an utmost commitment for all the work you pour into the blog.
Just be patient and don’t give up!
Willingness to Learn
Everything about blogging constantly evolves. You need to keep your glass half-full to keep it all going. Enrich yourself with the knowledge of the latest technologies, blogging techniques, content marketing, and SEO practices.
Doing the same thing over and over will not make your blog stand out among the competitors. You need to innovate and initiate something new. Be creative to find the methods that actually work and try to improve your skills bit by bit.
Do not be afraid to fail and try again. Even a failed attempt can still be used as learning material.
7 Things You Can Do to Grow Your Blog
Growing a fruitful blog also needs proper care and appropriate methods. I will give you some pointers to help you do it as effectively as possible.
1. Build Your Brand the Right Way
Always stick to your niche and start building a consistent brand around it. Branding covers all aspects of your blog, including content, design, user interface and interaction, domain name, social media marketing and so on.
A domain name alone is a crucial aspect of your brand.
If you are having a difficult time finding a domain name that resonates with your niche, you can use a domain name generator like NameMesh.
This tool will provide you with a lot of catchy names for a particular keyword. For example, if you plan to create a cooking blog specialized in desserts, you can type “Pudding” on the search box and it will give you suggestions like this:
Note that registering your desired domain name often requires you to spend some money (it won’t be expensive, though). However, I assure you that it will be worth it in the long run.
After all, a domain name is the first branding element on your site. It is the first thing that the visitor will remember about your blog. So, make sure the name is easy to remember and is related to your niche.
2. Know Your Audience
“Nobody can satisfy everybody” is the right expression when it comes to blogging. Although there are billions of internet users out there, you must understand that people have unique interests.
Based on this fact, it is better to grow your content by focusing on the right target audience rather than trying to fit in every segment. Determine your target audience by taking a deep look at your niche.
For example, if you develop a diecast blog, you should be aware that most of your audience will be a male adult between the age of 20 to 40 years old.
Even though diecast is practically a toy, there is such a small chance that your blog will be visited by the lower age segment that has no idea about collectibles.
By focusing on a particular target audience, you will find it easier to create engaging content and produce the desired result.
3. Discipline Yourself With a Posting Schedule
As I have previously mentioned, a blog should be treated as a never lasting passion project. It means that aside from passion, you also need to have consistency and discipline to make it bigger, better, and more profitable.
Producing a steady amount of quality content is the first step to grow your blog. More content means more chances and channels of increasing organic blog traffic, which is the most important aspect to start monetizing your blog.
I know that producing unique, attractive blog posts is difficult. Nonetheless, you can start by setting a regular posting schedule every week. This way, you will be familiar with the content creating process and your ability to construct fascinating content will keep improving.
Moreover, having a regular posting schedule also helps your audience to tune into your content and visit your blog more regularly.
4. Publish High-Quality Content Only
“Content is king”, this phrase was written by Bill Gates in 1996. Now, after more than twenty years, the prediction of the Microsoft owner proved to be true.
Content has become an effective solution for brands and companies in digital marketing. The same concept applies to the blogging industry. The better the content you create, the more traffic you get, thus the more profit you can earn.
Creating high-quality content might not be easy, but it definitely worth your effort. It should be original, contain useful information, be easy to read and relate to your blog’s niche.
Luckily, now you can find various tools to help you create high-quality content. For instance, you can use Grammarly to check any typos or grammatical errors in your writing.
This tool also provides a browser extension that will actively correct the errors when you are writing on an online platform such as WordPress or Google Docs.
Another tool that you may find useful is the Headline Analyzer. This tool will help you find the best blog title and headings of your site and make sure that it is attention-grabbing.
Moreover, in case you have some difficulties in finding new ideas for content, using Blog Ideas Generator could be very helpful since the tool This tool could generate tons of interesting topics with just one click.
All you need to do is enter a noun, click Add, then click Give Me Blog Ideas. Here is an example of a topic that I get when entering the noun “Pudding”:
As you can see, this tool could generate a pretty interesting topic in a few seconds. However, I suggest you to only use this tool as a last reserve since the best and the most original ideas always come from your own head.
5. Promote Your Blog
Creating high-quality content will definitely bring a lot of visitors to your blog. That being said, with the right promotion, your traffic will increase even more!
First of all, relying purely on search engines to land all of your organic traffic is not exactly smart. You need to find another way to drive your potential audience, such as using various social media platforms.
The number of social media users worldwide is estimated to reach up to 2.77 billion this year. As you can see, the potential to reach your target audience is huge.
You can also use online tools to promote your content. One of the best tools you should use is Buffer.
This platform allows you to create a scheduled post for your content across multiple social media platforms.
6. Pay Attention to Your SEO
Unlike the expensive, conventional advertising models and other paid online advertisements, SEO is a cheaper way to get organic traffic.
Perfecting SEO quality does take some time and a lot of experiments, though. It won’t instantly affect your traffic, but it will be absolutely worth it in the long run.
Good SEO practices will put your content on higher SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages), which means that the content is easier to find through search engines.
There are various ways to improve SEO quality. Nonetheless, here are some of the easiest methods to boost it:
- Monitor and improve user experience
- Make sure your blog is mobile-friendly
- Make sure everything works properly, including internal/external links, additional features, etc.
- Make sure your blog is running at the optimal speed.
- Use some powerful SEO plugins. Many of those plugins are available for free!
7. Build a Connection With Your Audience
One of the best ways to connect with your audience is through social media. Don’t turn off the comment section on your social media posts. Let the users leave responses and try to communicate with them. As a blog owner, you need to show that you care!
The same rules apply to your blog. Don’t neglect your comment section. Be sure to answer the visitor’s questions. If they leave constructive criticism or suggestions, let them know that you have read their opinion and show your appreciation for their feedback.
To keep your comment section clean from spam and trolls, you can use an anti-spam plugin. If you are using WordPress, try using Akismet.
Another great way to build a connection with the audience is by using email marketing to let them know the latest updates of your blog. By using an email marketing tool, you can build an email list and send out various newsletters.
MailChimp is available in both a free and paid version. The free plan allows you to send up to 10.000 emails per month for 2000 people. If you need more resources, you might have to use the paid plan that cost around $29.99/month.
In the end, building a real connection with your site’s visitors will help you to establish a solid audience base in the long run. So, it is important to let them know that they matter.
Growing your blog might not be the easiest task in the world, but it is crucial for the success of your online business.
To sum it all up, here are the methods for growing a blog:
- Build your brand
- Determine your audience and create your content accordingly
- Post regularly
- Make sure that you only post high-quality content
- Promote your blog
- Make sure to have great SEO
- Build a real connection with your audience
Keep in mind that you are going to need a lot of time to grow a blog into something profitable. In other words, keep trying and don’t throw in the towel yet!