There are so many new bloggers out there now. Did you know that many of them won't make it a full year? While there are so many free blogs out there, I assume the reason you are on this post is that you want yours to make money. I'm here to show you how to avoid being one of those new bloggers who leave money on the table.
The honest truth is that I can understand why so many blogs don't last that long. I've seen it first hand as my blogging buddies drop from the radar after only a few months.
Writing a blog is simple, but it is far from easy.
It takes a lot of work. But the real difficulty is making sure you’re working on the right things. You can work for hours on end and even full-time on your blog. But if you are working on the wrong things, your blog will never grow. You know what they say, it is not practice makes perfect, but rather, perfect practice makes perfect.
I've been blogging for nine years now. And in this post, I plan on describing from my experience with the top five ways new bloggers leave money on the table. If you find that you're making one (or more) of these mistakes, no worries: I am going to highlight what you should be doing instead.
Mistake # 1: Not Monetizing Soon Enough
There is a lot of blogging pros who give blogging tips and tricks about the value of making a quality product when it comes to your blog. They always say that you want to make sure you have quality articles and a good theme behind your blog before you even think about monetizing.
To this advice, I call bullshit. These bloggers are either delusional or trying to keep all the money for themselves!
While you should have quality content on your blog, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with thinking about how you’re going to bring in money with it from day one.
Here is a scenario I have seen again and again when it comes to other bloggers:
You have a new blogger who spends a couple of years developing quality content for their blog without making a damn dime. And then when they reach a point where they can clearly monetize because they have the traffic and engagement, they don’t do it because they don’t know how or they’re afraid of disappointing their audience because they haven't been monetizing this whole time. They’re afraid that they’ll lose their audience if they do start to monetize.
Let me first start by saying that there is nothing wrong with earning a decent income with your blog.
You can simultaneously create quality content and make money at the same time. Here are a few ways to do so:
- Publish sponsored posts, to make money even when you don’t have a huge following.
- Utilize affiliate marketing. Again, you can do this no matter the size of your audience.
- Run ads. You should be putting ads on your website from day one. You’re not gonna make a lot of money initially, but you’re gonna make something, which is a whole lot better than nothing. Anyone can sign up for a Google Adsense account, no matter your blog traffic. Check it out.
Starting to monetize from day one not only sets the expectation for your audience but allows you to keep things in perspective. Making money with your blog is just as important as creating quality content for your blog. One cannot survive without the other.
You cannot continue to write great content without making any money over a long period of time. And you cannot expect to get high traffic and engagement if you are not creating quality content.
Mistake #2: Not Writing Quality Content with Affiliate Links
Remember how I said a lot of people create quality content on their blogs for a long time without even thinking about monetizing? Well, they’re also missing out on great affiliate income. If you have written a great article that is getting lots of traffic, you should have some affiliate links in it.
If you’re curious about what affiliate links are, they are pretty links that have your unique tracking code in it. When someone purchases a product using your link, you get paid a commission. Commissions can range from a couple of dollars to 50% of the sale. And the best part about affiliate income is that you do the work one time (when you write the article) and then you just watch the money flow in.
Another great thing about affiliate income is that you don’t need a lot of traffic to make good money. All you need are people who are reading your content and then clicking through to your links to buy because you did such a good job explaining why they should. This is a great way to make passive income on your blog, but it does take a certain amount of skill!
If you want to learn more about affiliate marketing, I highly recommend you take this free workbook from Tasha Agurso called The Quick-Start Guide to Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers. She shows you how to start making affiliate income with your blog quickly! And the best part is that it is free. Sign up for it today.
Mistake #3: Not Tracking Stats From Day One
This one is a big one for me personally with my own blog. I had my blog for a couple of years and I had never really sat down and tracked any stats. I was not tracking my social media following, Google Analytics traffic, or how much income I was making. I was just going through the motions doing busy work here and there.
So I sat down and looked at my traffic and my income I noticed that for those two years that I was working on my blog, I had not really grown. I was getting anywhere between $50-$200 a month and it was not consistent. But after two years, you would expect it to actually grow and not be such a roller coaster.
So I decided to begin tracking my stats.
I made an excel sheet to track my social media following and income, and then I became a bit obsessed with it. I was updating my numbers every week and as a result, I was more interested in growing those numbers. I began to spend more time asking myself: How can I make my numbers grow more than they were and the week before?
Fast forward six months later, and I had my first month where I made $6,000.
I know that’s a huge jump going from years of only making $100 here and there. But it’s the truth. Tracking your numbers is so important. And it can mean the difference between your blog succeeding in a year or failing. Take a little time at least once a month to measure your numbers and see if you’re growing or declining. Let it help guide you in making decisions on what to do next.
Mistake #4: Not Signing Up For Social Media Accounts and Influencer Networks
I’m hoping that before you bought a domain for your blog you already did your research to make sure that that name is available on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. This is so important because your social media accounts are like your little army getting traffic for your blog.
Ensuring you will have unique social media accounts might sound like a no-brainer in 2020, but new bloggers leave money on the table all the time by not checking this before they create their site.
Not only do social media accounts help with search engine optimization (SEO), but they are also great for making sure that your website has links on reputable sites. Also called backlinking, this is a pretty important strategy when it comes to SEO. While you don’t get a whole lot of points for being on a website like Facebook, it does make your blog a more legitimate in Google's eyes.
Another place where I see new bloggers leave money on the table is by not creating profiles on various influencer networks, or websites where you can apply for sponsored articles. For every sponsored post website you have a profile on, that is another link going back to your website. While these sites are not as strong as say having a link on a website like BuzzFeed or the Huffington Post, you still get the benefit of having a variety of different links going to your blog.
Not sure where to find influencer networks to join? You can get my list of over 126 for free when you sign up for my email list!
As long as the sites are legitimate and have a decent Alexa rating (meaning a score lower than your own) then you’re all good to post the link from your blog there.
If you’re not sure which sponsored sites you should focus on first, I highly recommend you join the Blogging Money Update.
Blogging Money Update is an email newsletter that sends the best sponsored post opportunities to bloggers three times a week. Opportunities range from $50-$5,000 each and we only share from legitimate sponsored post sites. You do need have to have an account on a variety of sponsored post websites in order to apply. But after a couple of emails, you will find that you can sign up for a lot of profiles fairly quickly. Sign up for the Bogging Money Update here!
Mistake #5: Not Collecting Email Addresses
Bloggers who collect email addresses make money.
It is that simple.
Why on earth would you start a blog and not collect people's email addresses? The reason is that most people don’t know how to make money from that email list.
There are a lot of ways you can make money with your email list. Because of the size of many bloggers' email lists, they are able to get more traffic to their blog posts, get more eyes on their affiliate links, and make more money because they have people they can sell to.
If you don’t have an email list or are you are struggling to grow yours, I highly recommend you sign up for the Free List Building Pep Talk by Covertkit. In this free training, they show you how to get your first 1,000 email subscribers.
Even if you have more than 1,000 email subscribers I promise you will get something out of this training. And the best part is it’s free! You’ve got nothing to lose. Sign up here!
Bonus Mistake: Not asking for help!
I know I said I would do five great tips here, but there’s one that is just nagging at me that I felt I just had to share. And that is not for asking for help.
I can tell you exactly how many bloggers have had success with a blog all by themselves. Are you ready for it?
The answer is zero.
Every blogger that is doing big things has had help at one point in time or another. Some bloggers have had coaches. Some have joined mastermind groups. Others have taken courses that show you step-by-step what you should do.
ANYONE who has had success has also had help.
So, my advice is to get some help. Find other bloggers who have been there and done that. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel; instead, take a shortcut by asking for help.
This is exactly why I am currently developing the Blogging Money Formula. There are some bloggers who have got it going on. They write content that engages their audience, makes them click, and ultimately, makes them buy. If you want to create content that does these things, you need the course.
You can expect to learn:
- How to establish yourself as a professional blogger
- How to properly apply for sponsored posts so you get selected for more opportunities
- How to get brands to reach out to you
- How to build long-term relationships with brands
- How to write content that appeals to your audience and the brand
- How to drive traffic to your blog posts so that brands want to work with you over and over again
- What to do once your blog post is published so that you get consistent traffic to your blog
- How to build your Instagram account to over 10,00 followers so you can qualify for more Insta opportunities
- How to set a blog schedule that you can stick to once and for all.
You get all of this and so much more! Sign up below to join the waitlist for the Blogging Money Formula.
Have questions with your new blog? Feel free to leave them in the comments below. We love helping other bloggers out!
Good luck, and I wish you much success on your blog!