What They Don’t Tell You About Blogging For Money [TRUTH]

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Many successful bloggers lie to their fans about blogging for money.

I’m here to tell you the truth about how those bloggers actually make money online.

Can you make money online from placing advertisements on your blog?

Yes, bloggers can easily make thousands of dollars every month from ad placements on their blogs. Although, the top bloggers are seeing higher returns by leveraging their audience to sell their own products and services.

I have personally seen more success from using my blog to capture email addresses and promote my digital courses.

In this article you will learn all about blogging online for money.

Is making money from blogging realistic?

As with anything in life, making money from blogging takes time and commitment. That being said, you can absolutely make money from blogging online.

counting money from blogging

Results will vary and depend heavily on your niche but making $1,500+ per month within your first 90-365 days is definitely possible for the average joe.

The biggest factors for gaining traction from your blog is finding a popular niche, being creative and staying consistent.

So is blogging for money online realistic for you? It all depends on your drive and passion for the topics you will be writing about.

How do you make money from blogging?

How do you make money from blogging?

It all starts with writing exceptional content that will reach the right audience. Most of the blogs you read will tell you to simply slap a few ads on a page and go crazy … but that’s not always the right tactic.

Take your time to understand what will work best for your readers and how you should start monetizing your blog.

Here’s a few ways you could make money from your blog:


This is by far the most popular and usually the first thing eager bloggers do to start making money from their blog. Advertisements are easy to embed and the idea of passive income without having to do anything sounds fantastic, but it’s not always the best way to get started as a beginner. It’s important to understand that the traffic you get, amount of ad clicks and your niche’s popularity will all determine the amount of money you get paid every month.

Affiliate Marketing

Think of affiliate marketing like influencer marketing. Imagine you have 100,000 blog views every month and you have the opportunity to plug your favorite products and make money doing it. Affiliate marketers usually get paid a decent percentage, let’s say around 10-70% for every purchase coming from their links or their special affiliate codes.

Top affiliate marketers make a ton of money every month from simply promoting other companies products.

Selling Products

Whether you sell your own digital courses on Thinkfic or you sell your own physical products on Shopify, selling your own products is the way to go in the long run. Many bloggers have admitted that their products are what makes them the most money, not their sponsors or advertisements. Selling products has been my favorite tactic for monetizing our blogs because we are in full control and we tend to see higher return on investment.


Getting a sponsorship for your blog or podcast can be highly profitable. Sponsored posts are a great way to earn additional income if you have a larger audience. Keep in mind that sponsored posts can sometimes turn your readers off, so make sure what you are promoting fits your brand. It’s always a good idea to question whether or not sponsored posts should just be a social media shout out and not a full blown blog post.

Promote Services

Despite what you’ve heard, blogging isn’t just for stay-at-home moms. These days businesses are resorting to inbound marketing to capture new leads. Imagine having a platform with a call-to-action at the bottom of each post that gets readers into your sales funnel. Businesses have found blogging to be a great way to promote their services indirectly by providing value to their potential customers.

How much money can you make from blogging?

how much money can you make blogging graphic

Bloggers with 100,000 visits per month have reported earnings of $300 or more per month from just advertisements. The real ad money comes from joining an ad network like AdThrive which has increased many bloggers monthly income in comparison to other methods of earning money from advertisements.

Top content creators have turned to creating paid learning resources to make even more money blogging. Many stories have come out from bloggers who had courses teaching their students how to make money from advertisements who actually made ten times more from the courses they were selling.

If you talk to any top earning blogger, vlogger or podcaster they will all tell you that they actually earn more from their own products, affiliate partnerships or sponsorships.

So how much money can you make as a full-time blogger? It all depends on your niche, demographic, time investment and revenue streams.

It’s not unheard of to hear about bloggers making well over 7 figures every year.

[note title=”Formula for Effectively Blogging for Money”]Niche + Traffic + Diversified Monetization + Consistency[/note]

Which blogging platform is the best for beginners?

WordPress is by far the most popular blogging platform for beginners looking to launch their blog.

Medium, Blogger and Weebly are also popular among new bloggers.

I’m biased because I believe WordPress is still the best option for blogging hands down.

Let me explain why WordPress is better:

  1. WordPress has the largest market share (over 33% of the internet uses WordPress)
  2. There are well over 54,000 WordPress plugins available.
  3. Countless highly customizable themes are available to import.
  4. More questions are being asked and answered about WordPress (larger community)
  5. WordPress has been around much longer than most platforms (since May 27, 2003)
  6. Bloggers can host their own free open-source WordPress instance on their servers.
  7. WordPress.com gives less tech-savvy users an option to easily get started.

Blogging Tips

Blogging has transformed over the years and the ecosystem continues to evolve. It has become much harder to reach your audience by simply writing whatever you want these days. I’m going to outline a few of the things you can start doing to improve your blog posts.

Find Low Competition Topics

This strategy will give you a roadmap to follow as you create new content for your blog. Basically you want to find relevant topics to write about that have high traffic but also have fewer competitors. There are many free tools available that you can use to find these golden topics before you start writing.

[note title=”Find Low Competition Topics”]High Traffic + Low Competition = Easier Ranking Opportunity[/note]

Write Conversationally

A blog shouldn’t be super intense, you’re not writing a research paper. Your readers want to connect with you, just like they would in real life. When you read your blog post out loud, does it sound like a conversation or does it sound like you are talking at someone? Get your visitors involved and start building a community that can hold a conversation.

One Main Point

A blog post shouldn’t be a bunch of word vomit about a topic, you need to lead your readers to your main point. Why are you writing this blog post and are there any actions your readers should take next? Remember, you’re not writing a book, so the plot does not have to thicken. The faster your readers understand your point the more likely they are to come back for more information in the future. It’s also important to mention that sometimes your main point is simply the answer your visitor was looking for when searching Google.

Ask for Email Addresses

Every page of your website should have a place where visitors can give you their email address. This could be one of the most important tips I can give you about blogging since email addresses, website visits and engagement are a true measure of your growth. If someone gives you their email address they have literally given you direct access to their precious inbox. Email marketing is still one of the most effective marketing strategies bloggers can use to make money online.

Encourage Engagement

Simply asking your readers to share their thoughts or making it a point to encourage them will help to foster a community. Most people are shy when they first meet someone and the same goes for coming across a new blog. Gentle nudges of encouragement will always improve your engagement and grow a blogging community much faster. The most important tip for increasing engagement is to be fully engaged yourself. Nothing is more off putting for a community than their leader taking a backseat.

Write Evergreen Content

Every day new content is created on the internet and old content is archived. It is important to create evergreen content that will be sure to coexist with the fresh new content being created every day. Pick topics that will have a much longer shelf life and continuously update your content every 6 months to stay relevant. Top bloggers have a combination of time-relevant content and evergreen content to prevent their blogs from losing momentum.

Make Content Scannable

Think about how you browse the internet:

  1. You have a query that you put into your web browser
  2. You pick from one of the many search engine results
  3. You then scan the article for the main point and answer to your query
  4. You press the back arrow if the content is not easy to scan

The times have changed and people spend less time on web pages that are hard to consume. Visitors will scan the content and stay for the comprehensive answer. That being said, use headers, bullets and images to break up your content.

Stay Consist

It’s easy to forget to blog or put it off because life happened. Just remember, your fans will start relying on your content for their weekly routine. Just like when your favorite TV show is canceled, you get upset and watch something else. Blogging takes time and more importantly consistency. Set a blogging schedule for yourself and I suggest writing one blog post per week at first. The key to blogging is to stick to your guns and whatever you decide on, stick to that schedule.

Resources to start blogging for money

Trying to figure out where to start as a new blogger can be difficult. Here’s a list of my favorite tools and resources for blogging for money online. View our full list of 109+ online marketing tools completely free.

Website Hosting

CloudwaysBy far the best managed website hosting platform for scaling your traffic over time.

WPX HostingLightning fast and offers dedicated WordPress hosting at reasonable prices.

SiteGround – SiteGround is an affordable website hosting solution. It’s highly reliable and makes getting set up a breeze.

Content Management Systems

WordPress – This is by far my favorite blogging platform and it powers the largest brands in the world.

Strikingly – In just a few clicks and absolutely no technical experience, you can build a beautiful website.

Weebly – Although we prefer WordPress as our Website Builder, other business owners have had success with their Weebly sites.

Content Creation

Hemingway Editor – This tool helps you craft your content and increase readability by making helpful suggestions.

Grammarly – This is one of the best writing assistants on the market.log

Blog Monetization Tools

AdThrive – One of the best managed ad networks for bloggers. Although, you won’t get accepted until you hit 100K+ views per month.

Google Adsense – The most popular and accessible ad network for monetizing any size blog is Adsense by Google.

ClickBank – A well-known affiliate network where you get access to thousands of products to promote.

ShareASale – A huge collection of top-selling products for you to promote.

Thinkific – Create and sell your online courses with the Thinkific platform.

Teachable – One of the best platforms to showcase your knowledge.

Email Marketing Tools

ConvertKit – A powerful subscriber centric email marketing platform for nurturing leads and focusing on conversions.

AWeber – An awesome email marketing platform with many perks including robust automation tools.

Search Engine Optimization Tools

SEMrush – This tool helps you with organic, referral, paid and social traffic all for one price.

Mangools SEO Tools – Mangools has a wide variety of SEO tools to help you monitor your efforts and figure out where you need to take action next.

WordPress Themes for New Bloggers

Elegant Themes – This theme is easy to modify and the premade templates make it a breeze to get started.

Themify – The best premium WordPress themes on the market now come in a bundle.

Astra Theme – One of the most versatile themes with tons of addons and templates.

HappyThemes – These WordPress themes look great and perform better than most of the more expensive options.

WordPress Plugins

WP Rocket – This plugin is by far the best way to optimize your WordPress website in just a few clicks – increase your load speeds in minutes.

Elementor Pro – Elementor is the best front-end page builder for WordPress and it it’s packed with all the best features.

Wordfence – Over 30,000 website are hacked every day – make sure you use the Wordfence WordPress Plugin to secure your website.

Blogger Outreach Tools

Ninja Outreach – This tool helps our team generate leads and automate our link building efforts – and you get access to tons of valuable contacts.

FameBit by Google – We use FameBit to find social media influencers from all the major platforms to demo or recommend our products to their followers.

MailShake – Mailshake is a great way to build relationships with your cold leads. Automated follow-ups, templates and monitoring opens/clicks are just a few of our favorite features.

List of top earning independent bloggers

Here’s a short list of independent websites blogging for money online and have shown to be top earners in their respective niches.

Blog NameBlog Owner
Perez HiltonMario Lavandeira
Timothy SykesTimothy Sykes
Pro BloggerDarren Rowse
DooceHeather Armstrong
Steve PavlinaSteve Pavlina
WPBeginnerSyed Balkhi
Smart Passive IncomePat Flynn
John ChowJohn Chow
Freelance SwitchCollis Ta’eed
Entrepreneurs JourneyYaro Starak
My Blogger TricksMohammed Mustafa

Wrapping up

Well I hope I was able to answer most of your questions about blogging for money with this post. If you feel like I missed anything, please let me know in the comments below.

Just remember, blogging is more than writing whatever you want and slapping a few advertisements on your blog posts.

Take your time to understand what your audience wants and be consistent. Write content that stimulates your readers interests and provoke engagement.

When it comes to making money from your blog, always diversify your monetization methods. Ads make money but don’t limit yourself to one source of income, you want to build an empire.

Want to write better content that will rank higher on search engines? Check out my new course: Write What Ranks

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. This means I could make a commission from your purchase.

Drew has spent years building software, selling physical products online, and providing expertise to companies such as Disney, Paramount Pictures, and many more. Throughout his career, Drew has learned extremely powerful marketing and SEO strategies that have helped him increase traffic and acquire more customers.

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