How To Make Money Blogging In 2018: An Expert’s Guide for Beginners

make money blogging guide

If you’re looking for a detailed how to make money blogging guide, this page is a treat for you.

I started this blog in 2010, it’s been over 7 years now and I’m still learning a lot. I don’t claim that I’m making a ton of money from blogging but I do make a few thousand dollars every month.

That being said, I know how to make money from blogging. If you’re looking for the same thing and looking for an easy how to make money blogging guide in 2018, you’ve landed on the right page.

This make money blogging guide is going to be detailed so grab a cup of coffee, sit back, enjoy reading the post and if time permits, take some notes. Let’s get started!

How to make money blogging guide in 2018

make money blogging guide in 2018

Start your blog with Bluehost

The problem is there are way too many hosting companies available on the Internet that claim to offer excellent hosting to run WordPress sites.

Quick note: If you have decided to use WordPress as your blogging platform (I strongly recommend WordPress over other blogging platforms because of flexibility and security), here is the list of best WordPress hosting websites list. Go through each one of them and you’ll be able to pick one hosting that suits your blogging and budget needs.

That being said, if you ask me the #1 hosting choice for bloggers (especially the beginners), I strongly recommend Bluehost. I have been using Bluehost on my blogs for several years and really satisfied with their features and pricing.

With Bluehost, WordPress will be automatically installed. Apart from WordPress, there are 50 plus other Scripts that you can install with a Click from Your Bluehost control panel. I managed to get a huge discount for Bloggers Passion readers on any of Bluehost hosting plan where you can get it just for $2.95 per month.

You won’t get Bluehost discount anywhere else as it is exclusive for our readers so make sure to avail it before the offer ends. To claim this exclusive Bluehost discount, you need to use the following link (no coupon code required).

Click here to start your blog on Bluehost (just $2.95 per month!)

Here’s what you see when you click on the above link.

bluehost offer

Here are some of the features that you get with Bluehost:

  • FREE Domain for life and Site Builders
  • Automatic WordPress Install
  • 24/7 Support
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee

So what are you waiting for?

Go grab the discount from Bluehost to start your blog on WordPress platform now.

Now once you’ve paid for Bluehost hosting, it’s time for you to install WordPress from your Bluehost cPanel. Here’s a simple tutorial on how you can install WordPress on Bluehost. It’s a simple step by step tutorial for beginners (along with screenshots) to install WordPress within 5 minutes using Bluehost hosting.

The 3 essential things every beginner should understand before starting a blog

There are 3 essential things every blogger should understand before starting a blog to make money blogging in 2018 and beyond and they are;

  1. Deciding a blogging platform
  2. Deciding about your blogging niche
  3. Picking a memorable domain name

Let’s talk about each one of them so you can understand better about money blogging and it will things a lot easier for you in the long run.

#1. Deciding the RIGHT blogging platform

Do you know that biggest brands like Techcrunch, BBC, The New Yorker run on WordPress platform? WordPress is the only one platform that is used by millions of bloggers worldwide.

While picking a blogging platforms, there are 3 things you need to consider:

  1. The ease of use
  2. Popularity and
  3. Security

WordPress platform has all the above. Yes, Blogger is also another great blogging platform especially for beginners but it’s not recommended if you want to make money from blogging.

So you can say that, Blogger is better for hobbyist bloggers and WordPress is for those who want to make money online.

WordPress has a ton of plugins, tools, themes, tutorials, hacks and communities etc. I don’t know the ABC of coding but still able to manage my WordPress blogs all by myself as there are lots of ready to use solutions available around most of your blogging queries on WordPress. So it’s easy to use and most importantly it has greater security.

#2. Deciding about your blogging niche

A niche simply means the topic of your blog. What topics do I want to cover? That’s the most basic question you should ask yourself when starting a blog.

So decide about your blog niche by knowing your interests and passion. Also make sure whether your niche is profitable or not (if you want to make money).

You should choose a niche you are most passionate about, as it would help you generate lots of quality contents, which you will need to convert your simple blog into popular one. You can use Google Adwords Keyword tool or any other keyword tool to get extra keywords ideas around your targeted niche.

And if you are thinking it’s going to be very easy make money blogging, it won’t be the case. Your real work starts from making research about your blog niche.

#3. Picking a memorable domain name

If you want to create a long-lasting blog that makes money, pick a domain name that’s easy to remember.

Domain name is key for a successful blog or website. Don’t rush in selecting the domain name for your blog, always try to spend quality time on picking up the RIGHT one for you.

My suggestion is to come up with at least 10 to 20 domain name ideas.

Quick tip: Use tools like Domainr which is a better way to find out whether your domain name ideas are available or not.

Once you are fine with your target niche and the kind of keywords you will be targeting through your blog, it’s time to choose a domain name for your blog.

Suppose you have decided to sell weight loss diets, so the best option for you will be buying weightlossdiets.com domain. But that domain may not be available as there is huge competition in this niche and these days it becomes really difficult to get a good domain name.

Tip: If you’re using Bluehost, you don’t have to buy domain separately, it comes free for life!

Top 5 blogging tips from my 7 years of blogging journey

#1. Create high quality and in-depth content

The #1 key behind any successful blog is its content. Just imagine your favorite blog for a second and ask yourself why do you spend most of your time on it?

Is it because of their blog’s design? No.

Is it because of how fast it loads? No.

It’s because you love their content. And you want to spend more time on reading their content to gain more knowledge, right? That’s why they say content is king.

Did you know that 2000+ word articles generate more traffic and sales?

Yes, that’s true and I myself have been following the same “create long form of content” strategy since last 3 years and I’m noticing extraordinary results in terms of traffic and sales.

Here’s a case study by CoSchedule that shows the importance of in-depth content.

2000 words seo

The average word count by search rankings is around 2000+ words.

So if you want to build a profitable blog that makes money right off the bat, start creating high quality and long form of content that’s useful for your audience because without a doubt, content is the king.

You really can’t make money online especially through blogging without having great content on your blogs. You have to make sure to write quality stuff for your readers to grab their attention.

#2. Invest in the RIGHT tools

Don’t be afraid to spend some money when you want to make money blogging. Most people fail to make money from their blogs because they don’t invest even a penny!

If you start investing some money, then you get more serious about getting results. That being said, investing in the right blogging tools can yield you great returns in the long run.

Here are 3 tools that are worth every single penny and I use all of them to run this blog. I get a small commission when you purchase any one of them using the links below without costing you any extra money. So here’s the list of blogging tools that you should use.

  • SEMrush: I absolutely love this amazing SEO tool called SEMrush. It’s my goto tool whenever I want to increase my search traffic and sales. In fact, this tool has helped to quadruple my site traffic and sales. It’s helpful for keyword research, backlink analysis, competitor research, site audit and everything else that makes SEO easier for you. You can grab their 30 days free trial from here worth $99.
  • WordPress SEO by Yoast: This is a great plugin to optimize your blog’s content for specific keywords. Even if you’re a newbie, you’ll find it really easy to use this plugin to increase your search engine traffic. Their premium version helps you with better internal linking and you can also target multiple keywords.
  • Thrive themes: Your website design is the first thing that your visitors will see. If it sucks, they simply abandon your site which gives you high bounce rates and no sales as well and it also plays a crucial role in your website speed. I personally use and highly recommend thrive themes and they offer excellent features to create a great looking site. You can read my Thrive Themes review if you want to make your design look great.

#3. Keyword research is the key to getting more search traffic

I don’t know how many times I said this before but SEO is the lifeblood of any successful blog that makes money.

Keyword research is the backbone for any successful SEO campaign. That’s why if you want more traffic from search engines like Google, start doing keyword research. Here’s an image that tells you the importance of long tail keywords which play a key role in getting more traffic and sales.

long tail keywords

You should aim at using your targeted keywords into your contents, use them in titles, meta description section and interlink your blog contents using targeted terms. If you don’t know about these things right now, you will get knowledge about them as you start working on your first WordPress blog.

Make sure to use tools like SEMrush to come up with a ton of great keyword ideas to generate more traffic and sales to your sites.

#4. Analyse successful blogs

Here’s my quick tip for those who want to make money blogging in 2018:  analyse and learn from successful bloggers.

Successful bloggers are successful because of one major reason: they are consistent. They don’t give up so easily. They work really hard and they invest money and they do everything they can to make their blogs successful.

If you want to be successful as well, start contributing guest posts on top blogs in your niche and build relationship with fellow bloggers and their readers through blog comments. Don’t write crappy guest posts and spend quality time in writing high quality contents for others that benefits their readers.

Also make sure to look at ways to improve your subscribers because the money is the list. As far as I know, top bloggers generate 80% of their income through their email lists, so don’t neglect building one if you want to make money blogging.

#5. Promotion can make or break your blogging success

Do you know why only few people get most attention online? Because they spend more time on promoting their contents than creating them. They focus more on promotion than creation. But most new bloggers do it exactly opposite. They spend most of their time on creating contents rather than promoting and reaching out most people.

Here’s a quick tip: spend 80% of your time on promotion and 20% on content creation (if you want to build a profitable blog that makes money blogging in 2018).

Yes, without a doubt, content is king but without promotion no one reads your blog posts. That’s why spending as much time as you can in promoting your content can give you better results in the long run.

You need to back your content with quality backlinks from different websites and blogs based in your niche. There are numerous of ways we can drive traffic and backlinks to our blogs. This is a huge topic in itself. So I’m just sharing some quick tips in content promotion.

  • Use social media websites like Facebook, twitter etc to spread the word about your content. Connect with the influencers on social media and try to add as much value as you can to help them.
  • Share your blog contents on popular social bookmarking websites like StumbleUpon, Reddit etc.
  • Make use of discussion forums and communities like Blog Engage, Just Retweet, Quora etc if you want to get the most out of your content.

Let’s now talk about some of the top ways to make money blogging in 2018.

Top 10 ways to make money blogging in 2018

#1. Affiliate marketing

Hands down, affiliate marketing is the king of all income sources which are used to make money from blogging. Affiliate marketing is the king for over a decade and this industry is growing rapidly and expected to reach billions of dollars in the coming years.

So if you’re considering affiliate marketing as a primary source to make money from your blog, then you’ve really high chances of making more money.

But there’s a caveat when you’re picking affiliate marketing to make money blogging and that is: it’s NOT easy. It’s not a get rich quick scheme.

You need to put a ton of time, money and efforts into affiliate marketing to make more sales. But if you’re ready to put that extra efforts, then sky’s the only limit.

Even I’ve been using affiliate marketing on this blog as a primary income source to generate money. I made over 13,000 dollars within a week from affiliate marketing.

That being said, here are a few quick tips if you want to make more affiliate sales.

  • Don’t bluff while selling products. People buy from you only when they trust your advice. Being honest while selling can make a huge difference.
  • Learn from successful affiliate marketers. Find out how they are promoting their products to make more sales.
  • Give huge discounts to those who buy affiliate products from you. This thing always works for me.

#2. Making money from online courses

I think this will become a new trend in 2018 and beyond. Already the big players have been using online courses to make millions of dollars (people like Derek Halpern, Ramit Sethi etc).

You need a thriving email list of subscribers to make more profits from online courses. You also need to build credibility with your content if you want more people to enrol into your paid online courses.

Apart from that, you need to find out what type of content performs well for your target audience. Only then you’ll be able to create premium online courses that people pay attention to.

Yes, it might take some time for you to understand the whole process of making money from online courses, but here’s a quick outline that might help you.

  • Firstly, build an email list of 1000 subscribers
  • Once you get 1000 email subscribers, launch a mini online course (by selling at $10 to $50)
  • Try different pricing models, test and reiterate the whole process.

Quick tip: If you don’t want to involve yourself too much in creating an online course from scratch by yourself, you can use Udemy to easily create and sell your online course to make money online. There are a ton of people who use Udemy for selling online course and I know many of them make thousands of dollars every single month.

#3. Google Adsense

AdSense is still the #1 popular income source for most new bloggers.

There are thousands of bloggers who are making decent income from their Google AdSense accounts. Google Adsense is the most popular PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising program that is owned by Google. We are paid for every Google Adsense Ad which is placed on our blog.

We will be able to make more money as the number of clicks on Adsense ads improves. You could make a good living through Google Adsense only if you have a high traffic blog. Click this Link to create a Publisher Account on Google Adsense.

#4. Selling ClickBank Products

ClickBank is a great platform for bloggers who want to find a ton of products from a wide range of topics.

One of the best sources to sell your affiliate products is to use ClickBank market, they offer too many affiliate products to promote. All you have to do is to pick the right products that are suitable for your audience and place those links in right places, convince your readers to buy them.

ClickBank is a marketplace for buying and selling digital products. ClickBank marketplace has hundreds or even thousands of wide range of categories they are covering on their website. So you will most probably end up seeing some targeted products for your blog.

You need to create an affiliate account on ClickBank before start promoting their products on your blog. Best thing about being an affiliate on ClickBank is that you will be able to earn 30 percent to 70 percent amount of total cost of a product.

#5. Amazon Affiliates

In case if you are not interested in selling digital products and interested in selling real products, you can use Amazon.com type of shopping portals.

Amazon gives 4 to 15 percent commission which varies from category to category on a product sold through your affiliate link. Click this link to to know more in detail about Amazon associate program.

Some other affiliate networks you can try for selling different kind of products on your blogs are CJ.com, E-junkie.com, ShareASale.com and LinkShare.com.

#6. Selling your own products

Selling your own products is by far the best way to make money online. Because you don’t have to pay commission to anyone to make more sales, and you have all the flexibility to charge how much amount you want from your customers or users.

If you are able to create a product which is able to grab the eyes of internet users, you can make big money. But your product model needs to be very solid. It should do the task for which people are buying it.

Once you have that kind of product, you just need to drive the targeted audience on your product pages. You should target keywords which people might be searching to find your product. You can sell your products by creating a vendor account on Amazon, ClickBank and Commission Junction kind of websites.

#7. Selling Direct Advertisements

Are you getting good amount of traffic from search engines to your blogs or websites? If yes, you can make a lot of money by selling ad spaces on your websites. There are so many advertisers searching for places to place their ads to get more reach or increase their sales. So if you can provide them, they would be glad to pay you decent pay checks each and every month.

You can make good amount of money selling direct advertisements on your blog in case you have a popular blog that gets good stream of traffic from search engines. For getting good success through Direct Advertisements, you need to inform your blog readers about different advertising options. For this, you should set up an advertising page on your blog the way I have one in place on Bloggers Passion.

#8. Selling Banner ads

Banner ads work well if you’ve target audience coming from countries like US, UK since most banner ad publishers are interested in sending high quality target audience to their products.

You can increase your earnings further if you decide to sell banner advertisements on your blog though BuySellAds kind of banner advertising networks. BuySellAds has a wide range of advertisers in major categories. These advertising networks will pay up to 75 percent of your total earning that you made through them and rest of money go into their accounts.

#9. Paid Reviews

I sometimes do paid reviews on this blog to make extra income (but only when I find those products useful). I personally use them for a while before even considering to write reviews about them to make sure whether the product is good or not.

There are many advertising people or product launchers who are actively searching for ways to increase their sales and if you could provide them a paid review and link back to their products, they will be happy to pay you money. You can make anything around $50 to $1000 depending on the product you choose.

You can some quick money through blogging while doing paid reviews for different advertisers in your niche. You can use Sponsored Reviews and Review Me kind of paid reviews website to grab more paid review opportunities on your blog. Most of paid review networks keep the revenue share ratio to 50:50 with their bloggers (Publishers).

#10. Sell Your Expertise

If you don’t want to make money by any one of the above mentioned money making stuff, then you can start making money blogging by selling your own expertise. You could make money by teaching blogging stuff, you could conduct online courses and make money, you could even launch your own membership site programs to make money online.

Once you have established yourself as an expert in your niche, start selling your expertise to others. Suppose you are good in writing, you are make money online doing freelance content writing for other website owners based in your niche of expertise. You could sell consulting services in web design, web development, and SEO etc. industries as well if you are really good about any of them.

3 most asked questions by beginner bloggers: Make money blogging guide

I know this how to make money blogging guide is going a bit detailed but here are the 3 questions most beginner bloggers usually ask me again and again.

  1. Can I make money as a new blogger?
  2. How do blogs generate money?
  3. How long does it usually take to make money from a new blog?

So let me answer each one of them in a simple way so you can get a better idea about how to make money blogging in 2018 and beyond.

#1. Can I make money as a new blogger?

Yes, you absolutely can. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a new blogger or not, if you can build a high quality blog with great content and promote it the right way, by using the right kind of monetization strategies, anyone can make money from blogging.

But you need to remember one thing: making money from a new blog takes time, consistent efforts and learning from successful blogs that are relevant to your industry. So don’t get discouraged when your new blog don’t get much traffic or money in the first 6 months.

#2. How do blogs generate money?

There are a ton of ways bloggers make money from their blogs.

  • Affiliate marketing (selling others products to earn commission, this is my primary income source for Bloggers Passion)
  • Ads (AdSense, banner ads etc)
  • Paid reviews (I do them sometimes if the products are good)
  • Selling links
  • Selling own products (eBooks, plugins, tools etc)
  • Offering services (SEO, WordPress installation, design, writing etc)

#3. How long does it usually take to make money from a new blog?>

There are thousands of blogs going live each and every single day. The sad thing about new blogs is that most blogs get abandoned within 3 months. Do you know why 90% of bloggers don’t make any money?

The reason is, they don’t know how the money works online. Most bloggers don’t spend much time or money to make money from their sites. It takes money to make money from blogging.

That being said, it usually takes 6 to 8 months to make money from a new blog considering the facts that you’re doing the following things:

  • Creating high quality content every week
  • Promoting your content
  • Getting at least 1000 to 2000 visitors a day
  • Building an email list

Are you finding this how to make money blogging guide interesting and useful? Then, why not start a blog on Bluehost today and start generating money from your blogs.

Click here to start your blog on Bluehost (just $2.95 per month)

How Much Money Can You REALLY Make from Blogging?

So how much can you make money from your new blog? That’s an easy question to ask but hard to answer. I would say it depends upon how much work you put into your blog and how much expertise you have about the targeted niche.

That being said, there are few bloggers who make a ton of money. Few examples;

  • Pat Flynn makes over 100,000+ dollars each month
  • Derek Halpern makes over million dollars every year
  • Anil Agarwal (that’s me) makes several thousand dollars a month

Here’s a screenshot of Pat Flynn’s income report.

pat flynn income reports

Here’s an excellent article on few top earning bloggers which talks about how much money few top bloggers make along with their income streams.

So there you go. How much money you can make from a blog is NOT the right question to ask because you can make millions of dollars a year with the right strategies.

If you follow the make money blogging methods that are shared above, you will surely be able to make good profits within a few months after launching your blog. It’s also the case some monetization methods which are working for me, may not work for you. So you need to test lots of ways to make money from your blogs and stick with those that gives you maximum revenue.

As I said, there are a ton of ways to make money blogging, it depends on each and every individual to make more money from their blogging efforts. If you observe any top blogger who is making decent income from their blogs, you will notice that they are following only few income streams, they don’t follow every income source under the sun.

So make sure to test few income streams that are mentioned in this make money blogging guide and analyze yourself which can work best for you. I personally think affiliate marketing and selling your own expertise can work best if you are really committed towards building a great readership around your blogs. I’m personally getting good results with these two income streams.

Final thoughts on how to make money blogging guide in 2018

I hope this how to make money blogging guide has helped you at least to some extent. If possible, try to implement a few things mentioned on this guide to get results.

Making money from blogging is NOT hard when you implement the right strategies. Give it some time, put consistent efforts, invest in the right tools and your blog will grow eventually. Don’t quit blogging if you don’t see enough traffic or sales from your blogs immediately. It will definitely take time, you will make a ton of mistakes and then your blog will grow!

If you’ve any questions or doubts on how to make money blogging guide, don’t hesitate to ask them in the comments below. Let me know your thoughts.

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