This post contains affiliate and referral links. They are placed for your conevience. If you choose to use them, I earn a small commission that I use to support this blog. Thanks!
Did you read my disclosure statement up there? While this is a blog of love for me, paying for a domain name and hosting is not free. The honest truth is that it cost money to run your own platform.
But the good news is, even small blogs can be monetized and pay for themselves.
We are currently running small numbers here’s. We have about 150 people on our mailing list, and get about 1k unique viewers a month. I’m nothing but thankful for ya’ll. But its not like we’re running a huge media campaign here.
So how do I make my small platform profitable?
I utilize affiliate links, ad space and sponsored post.
The top way I earn revenue from this blog is through affiliate links and codes.
Affiliate links and codes allow your readers to purchase a product you recommend and the company will pay you a small commission from the sale.
This is a great way to earn extra cash if you have a product or a few that you really stand behind.
My most viewed posts on this blog are all centered around my in depth reviews. These reviews are honest and thoughtful and if a reader decides that they would like to try the item out for themselves, they use the link and codes I provide and the company pays me for it.
Generally with affiliate links, you earn between 5-15% commission on total purchase price, or a set rate for each predicted purchased.
Some affiliate programs are exclusive and require an application or approval processes to join. However, there are plenty of free programs out there too. A good place to start would be to sign up for Amazon Affiliates, ShareASale or ShopeStyle Collective— all of which are open for smaller bloggers to join and allow you to get affiliate links for products you love.
Alternatively, if there is a product you really love, try reaching out to the company and see if they have a link or code they would be willing to give you for your site. Most of the time, their PR departments are really happy to hear from you and will work something out.
Depending on how engaged your audience is, a small blog can easily make a few hundred a year off of affiliate linking with good SEO and valuable content.
While I have slowed down on doing these, sponsored post are another great way to make money on a small blog. Sponsored post allow you to get paid to produce content for brands you want to represent. With sponsored post, you have a agreement set for x amount of deliverables, posted within a certain timeframe with a pre determined rate of pay.
Many influencer networks are now available to small bloggers who would like a middle man to help them out when it comes to getting these types of sponsorships. I’ve written about doing these a few times before on this blog before, so feel free to check those out. While these networks are great, I have noticed that their rate of pay tends to be a bit low at times.
I generally use these now to get ideas of companies to reach out and send my media kit to.
Back when I was doing more of these, I would generally charge $250 for 1 blog post amplified to all my social medias and I would do two sponsorships a month.
The last way to easily monetize your blog is through selling ad space. There are a few ways to do this, but the most popular way is through ultizing an ad company.
Depending on who your host is, you may be able to turn ads on and off with a switch of a button. I’m currently using WordPress.com for this blog and it literally takes me 2 minutes to turn on ads.
There are many different ways to sell ad space on your blog, but if you’re small or just starting out, AdSense is probably your best bet. You do have to sign up and be approved. But so long as your content is family friendly, you’re likely to get an account with them.
AdSense releases cash to you with every $100 you make and pay per clicks range from $.15-$25, depending on what ads are running.
Increasing your traffic with good SEO and value driven content will defiantly help you to earn more with AdSense, however be warned that blogs don’t do as well with this type of monetization as other sites. This is why I only have ads turned on periodically throughout the year.
Still, there are many blogs, smaller ones included, that make good money through just selling ad space on their site, so felt that it should be included.
I ended up taking most of 2020 off for my extended maternity leave, but even still this blog as able to generate enough cash to operate in the black. If this site can do it, then your certainly can.
These tips are also useful for most of your social media accounts too. Even if you don’t have your own domain, you can defeintily apply the same principles of affiliate linking and sponsorships to Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Tictok–even email list.
You just need to make sure that you are in compliance with each company’s guidelines as well as the FTC when you do so.
While I’m happy that this blog funds itself, this year I’m setting an ambitious goal to end 2021 making 4 figures a month from this blog. In what ways do you plan on monitoring your platforms this year?