There are many different ways to monetize a blog but for our purposes, we are going to focus on only three money making systems. In this way, it is easier to pass a blog on „as-is‟ when it is sold. The new owner can literally take over and start earning on the day their purchase is completed.
The first source of income that you should add to your blog is Google AdSense, so if you do not have an AdSense account, you need to apply for one now (after you have added content to your blog, as Google need to review your site to agree your application).
Once your Google account is open, it is simply a question of logging in before working your way through the ad creation process to generate the advertising block to add to your blog.
There is detailed information about everything you might ever need to know about AdSense on the AdSense Help page. Whilst the ad block creation process is relatively straightforward, if you do have any problems, this is the page where the help you need is available.
With your ad block created, it needs adding to your site. The easiest way of doing so is to use an advertising plug-in like AdSense Now, AdManager or Who Sees Ads? (the last one takes a bit more setting up but will often earn more money).
AdSense is going to be your primary source of income mainly because it is not necessary for your visitors to spend money for you to generate an income through AdSense. The likelihood of doing so is enhanced because the advertising that Google places on your blog is a match for your topic in the same way that the adverts on the search results pages match the search terms.
Hence, for anyone visiting DogTrainingProblems.net, they will be shown adverts related to dogs and associated matters, making it considerably more likely that they will click on the ads to see what is available.
Every time they click on an ad on your blog page, you get paid.
When someone is interested in buying your blog, you will have to produce proof of the income which that individual blog site is generating.
Consequently, you should clearly separate the income that you generate from your blog from any other AdSense income from other sources. When you flip your blog, the main criteria that dictates how much you ask for is the provable income and if you don’t separate your income streams, you cannot prove anything.
This is something that you have to do with any money maker attached to a blog that you are going to flip because the main interest of any prospective purchaser is how much money that blog will earn for them immediately.
The next channel of income to add is to start selling digital information products that you are an affiliate sales person for through a site like Clickbank.com. Once again, if you do not already have an account, visit the site and sign up for one now because as with AdSense, the account is completely free.
Next, visit the „Marketplace‟ page to find a suitable product that you can promote on your blog by searching with your primary keywords in the search box on the page. This for example would be my queried term:
When you click the green „Go‟ button, you are presented with the bestselling products in the market. Have a look through the sales (or
„pitch‟) pages of the top half-dozen bestsellers to see which most appeals to you (on the basis that if it appeals to you, it should appeal to your site visitors too).
Then, click the appropriate link under the product description to „create a Hoplink‟.
Your „Hoplink is a unique affiliate promotional code which you use to ensure that you get paid for every sale you generate. To create your link and the unique tracking code that you must assign to this campaign to use as income proof when you sell the blog, click the link next to the one below the product description that took you to the pitch page earlier:
Add your account nickname and unique tracking code (anything is fine as long as you can use it to identify sales from your blog) before clicking the „Create‟ button:
This creates the encrypted codes that you use to generate sales that can be attributed to your account:
With your code generated, it is merely a question of adding it to your blog page, which you can do in one of a couple of different ways
Firstly, if you look at the product pitch page once again and scroll to the bottom, you should see a link for „Affiliates‟. Take a look because you may find that there are some ready-made promotional materials for this product.
If not, one simple and effective way of adding links to your site is to embed HTML links in the text of your articles to create what are known as anchor links. Anchor links are links in the main body of your article where the clickable text is your main keyword phrase.
For example, if I embedded this link in the text of my article:
<a href=”http://598c6cz4wacyiu7fllcl0p.hop.clickbank.net/?tid=BLOGSALE S”>dog training problems</a>
It would appear like this – dog training article – which would be an active hyperlink to my affiliate promotion. Embedding links in text in this way is simple but very effective way of getting people to visit your affiliate link, because the hyperlink in the text appears totally natural. Equally as importantly, it also helps the search engines understand what your article is about as the spiders always pick up on anchor text as being a primary indicator of the subject matter of the article.
You can add a Clickbank „advertising block‟ on your page as well as seen in the next screenshot. Create this from inside your account, copy the code and add it to your blog.
The final method of monetizing your blog is to add a mini eBay store by signing up for an eBay Partner account before installing the free phpBay Lite plug-in on your blog. This can produce any number of different mini stores, with one option looking like this:
These mini-stores always on a reasonable amount of cash into the pot every month without requiring any more work – the products presented in your mini-store change on a constant basis – so it is well worth installing on your own blog, because when it comes to selling your virtual real estate, every dollar of provable income counts.
With your blog constantly growing (you should still be adding content but a couple of articles week is more than enough) and monetization sorted out, it is time to start promoting your blog to drive targeted visitors to it.
By now, as long as you have been pinging every time new content is added, the search engines will be aware of your existence and will probably be visiting on a reasonably regular basis. This is the first step to driving targeted traffic to your site.
However, the next step is to submit information about your site to the social bookmarking sites and the free directories as well.
Doing this will generate both traffic and incoming links from the social sites, whereas you are primarily looking for links from the directory, because links of this nature are very valuable, especially as far as Google is concerned.
Right now, there are hundreds of social bookmarking sites and it is simply impossible to submit your information to each and every one of them.
On the other hand, if you use a free tool like Social Marker, it is possible to submit information to the majority of high-quality social sites relatively easily:
Be aware that the only time you should submit your information to all of these social sites is when it is first launched. After that, select half a dozen at random to submit information about each new article that you add to your blog.
Similarly, in order to submit information about your blog to the major directory sites, you can download free software here that will help you to semi-automate and therefore streamline the submission process.
Next, visit Squidoo, HubPages, Weebly, Wetpaint, Wikidot and Blogger.com to create a series of mini-sites on free platforms which are all extremely popular with the major search engines (Google in fact own Blogger).
Add unique versions of some of your articles (you can create „spun versions‟ using a free program like JetSpinner) to each of these sites. Make certain that every time you do so, you submit information to the social sites through Social Marker but remember to randomize your submissions.
Create a new account for each of these resources because you’re going to give the mini-site away when you flip your blog and then link them together.
However, when you link your mini sites together, you should do so in a reasonably random fashion, because if every site is linked to the next in the chain in exactly the same way, it begins to look a little suspicious. If Google suspect that you have built this network chain in order to generate links, it is likely that they will ignore them, so make sure that your link structure is relatively randomized.
Google is looking for a link structure surrounding your blog that appears natural and it does not appear natural if every link goes to exactly the same place. Also, links to internal pages and articles on your blog are every bit as valuable as a link to the main page so don’t be tempted to send all the links to the same place.
Next, remember that you originally created a keyword list with 30 or 40 phrases on it and that so far, you have only used half of those on your blog? The reason is, you should now write a series of 400 to 500 word article is for submission to the major article directory sites like EzineArticles, GoArticles, Search Warp, Article City, Buzzle and Article Dashboard.
Create a new account with each of these sites if you don’t already have one (if you do, use it) and start submitting keyword rich articles to each site. Apart from the fact that these articles should be a little longer than those on your own blog, the writing rules are pretty much the same.
Include the primary keyword term for that article in the title and in the first and last paragraphs. If your article is over 400 words, you can probably include the keyword a couple more times in the main body text of your article, but no more than that.
When you submit your article, you also submit a keyword list and a two or three sentence description of why someone must read your article.
In addition, you need to create an appropriate resource box (a description of your business and why people should use you) which leaves your article reader in no doubt that they have to visit your blog.
It is in this resource box that you include the hyperlink which the reader can follow to visit your blog. I would recommend that you use one anchor text link and one link which is the URL of the page or blog article that you want the visitor to go to. You do this because not every article directory accepts active hyperlinks, so at least you include a URL that your reader can copy and paste included in the resource box. When you submit articles to the major directories highlighted previously, make sure that you always submit to EzineArticles first and wait for them to publish. After that, you can submit your work to all the other directories concurrently.
Also, always remember that using articles to promote your business is a numbers game. The more articles you can submit to the directories, the more targeted visitors you will see and the more money you will earn.
Articles are also very valuable for generating one-way links from some very highly rated sites to your blog, which once again helps to push your promotional materials and the articles on your blog further up the Google search result pages.
Another highly effective way of promoting your business is to make short videos which you submit to the leading video networking sites like YouTube.
When you do so, make sure that you include your keywords in your titles and descriptions. You do this because videos always feature very prominently on the Google search results pages but they are there because of the keywords in the title and description rather than it being anything to do with the content of the video.
Once again, the more videos you make and submit to as many video networking sites as possible, the more effective your promotional tactics will be. For this reason, instead of submitting one video to YouTube, I would recommend submitting several videos every month to as many video networking sites as you can using the free services of TubeMogul.
However, Tube Mogul will only allow you to make a certain number of free submissions every month, after which you might want to use the paid (but cheap) services of HeySpread to do exactly the same job.
If you adopt all of the promotional tactics that you have read off in this section, you will inevitably generate plenty of targeted traffic to your blog.
Some of those individuals will click on your adverts, and some may even generate additional commissions through Clickbank and eBay.
Pulling all of these income streams together, you will have an aggregate income figure. I’ll explain in the next chapter how you use it.
It stands to reason that anyone who is considering buying your blog when you flip it is going to be interested in the bottom line, exactly how much money they can earn from your site after they buy it.
However, it is also important to appreciate that most site and blog buyers are interested in regular recurring income, rather than single one-off payments. This in fact is the reason why you do not focus on Clickbank and eBay products when creating your blog because whilst selling products or promoting eBay definitely puts more money in your bank, it is not regular.
On the other hand, AdSense is highly predictable, which is extremely attractive for the buyer.
To have a blog that is likely to attract potential purchaser, you have to have a steady track record of earnings over a period of several weeks. Reasonably stable income earnings over a month or two is a minimum requirement for being able to flip your blog.
Fortunately however, I am not talking about a blog that earns $100 a day.
In fact, if you ensure that your blog has earned even just one dollar a day from Adsense on a consistent basis, you have a saleable asset. As long as the income is consistent, it is clear that your marketing materials are doing their job by sending targeted traffic to your site.
The day after you sell the blog, these promotional materials are not all of a sudden going to stop sending targeted traffic, meaning that the new blog owner will continue to enjoy the same level of income after they buy.
So, let‟s imagine that you have a record of one month of earning a least
$2 a day from Adsense, plus you’re making a few extra dollars from eBay every month (and can prove that you do so regularly) and pull in a little extra from Clickbank sales every so often as well.
Based on your Adsense earnings alone, you could realistically expect to flip your blog for somewhere around 10 times the monthly income of your site, but you might be able to push this a little further because of the additional income that you can prove.
Hence, a blog that is earning just two dollars a day is going to be worth around $600 or a little more, depending on how well you can sell the idea of the additional income from eBay and Clickbank.
From this it follows that if you hang onto your blog until it is earning a regular $5 a day, you have a $1500 asset on your hands and every time you can increase your AdSense earnings, the value of your blog increases.
You therefore have two very important considerations here.
Firstly, how long should you hang onto a blog before you flip it and secondly, what can you do to increase the income the return when you do so?
From my own experience, the answer to the first of these questions is very much a matter of personal attitude and needs. For example, if you enjoy posting new content to your blog and writing articles or making videos to promote it, then it makes far more sense to hang on to it than it would if you hate every minute of it.
Increasing the money that your blog earns on a daily basis is simply a question of increasing your promotional efforts to drive more traffic to your site. You should also focus on creating as many incoming links as you can as well because links dictate the Page Rank of your blog, and a PR3 blog is definitely going to attract a higher price than the same blog with no page rank attached.
When it comes down to flipping your blog, you can do it very quickly (a month or two after launch) with a realistic possibility of selling out for
$100-$200, or you can hang onto it the expectation of selling for
$1000-$2000 six or twelve months down the line.
There is no hard and fast rule on this but you must understand that the only justifiable reason for hanging onto your blog is if you can improve its value, and if this is something that you cannot (or don’t want to) do, you are better selling sooner rather than trying to squeeze a few extra dollars out.