Thursday, September 4, 2008

Make Money with Your Blog

Which are the best ways to make money with your blog or site?

Google AdSense

AdSense is by far the best, most rewarding monetization resource for blogs, news sites and small, content-rich information sites. Google offers AdSense, a service that lets independent publishers, bloggers and news site owners to publish text-based, context-relevant ads next to the content on their sites. This is done automatically without you, the publisher, having to worry about anything else except putting small-sized code inside each of your Web pages.

For every click on Google AdSense contextual ads, the publishing sites receives credit for a small amount of money, while Google keeps an undisclosed amount of the total advertising share. Though many lament lack of relevance for the ads and little return for the increased info clutter on their pages — many silent publishers — probably the ones who consciously make less noise about this, are making serious money with this program.

What few understand, is that to make AdSense work for you ($$),it involves strategic work. Just placing the code on your pages isn't enough. The focus of your site, the way the content is organized, the way web pages are coded, the titles you use and the color and position you select for placing your AdSense ads on your Web pages all make a difference to the results you get. Significant.

What is important is that different rules apply to different types of pages and content. So no set of rules equally apply to all sites. The key is for the publisher to keep questioning the integration of contextual, text-based ads by doing systematic, ongoing testing, experimentation and optimization. For a focused blogger, this can mean from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per month. For a dedicated publisher covering high-paying information areas, it is possible to get into the 5-digit range without any major investments and with a relatively short time-to-market. I am not talking about a blogger in the traditional sense, but rather to focused and very professional independent information resources like SearchEngineWatch.com or Paidcontent.org, for example.

AdSense offers also the opportunity to monetize site searches while providing a powerful, lightning-fast search engine for your own site at no extra cost. By providing search-relevant ads on your site's search results pages. Google AdSense adds another great opportunity to monetize premium service and access with relevant text-based information about products and services.

BLOGAds

Blogads is an effective solution for taking control of your advertisers and comparing your profit share with your online ad agency. As the name clearly implies, Blogads is an advertising service for blogs. When the service first came out, As I mentioned that Blogads offers a great opportunity for small, independent publishers, blogs and news sites to sell their ad space in a direct and useful way. Blogads keeps 20 percent of your net revenue and sends you the rest by Paypal or check as soon as you reach a predetermined amount.

For your advertisers Blogads provides a great bonus in terms of speed and simplicity: "Ordering an ad takes just two or three minutes. Submit your image and/or text ad. Define its duration. Pay with Paypal's secure forms. You are done. After the blogger approves the ad, return to tweak and optimize clickthroughs, renew or order on new blogs."

In the case of Blogads the publisher has control over which ads to accept and which ones to reject.

Amazon Associates

The Amazon Associates program lets independent online publishers with the opportunity to promote any product in Amazon's inventory as affiliate agents. All it takes is adding a small, identifying code to the links that take your site's visitors to a specific Amazon product page (books, DVDs, electronics, etc.). If the visitors who clicked on your link buy an item even if it's not the item you point to — you earn a small commission.

Affiliate Sales

A good monetization channel for select products and services is affiliate sales. This approach involves signing up to become an affiliate reseller of specific products.
As long as the affiliate products do not affect the publisher's credibility and provide pointers to useful, high-value products that the publisher fully endorses, affiliate sales are a rewarding monetization channel.

The commissions received for these sales vary depending on the product and the original vendor sales and marketing strategy. LinkShare and Commission Junction are two of the largest affiliate program brokers. Check out their catalogs to get a good idea of what products and commissions are available.

If you write and publish your own e-books and other premium content publications, you may want to consider using an affiliate sales program to give your products greater reach and exposure.

My preferred provider for this is Share-It!, which offers full payment and an ecommerce infrastructure to online publishers while integrating a customizable affiliate program. You can set the commission and the products that you want your affiliates to manage. Share-It! automatically takes care of payments and accountability of the transactions; it sends updates and timely sales reports both to you and to your registered resellers. The system even automatically creates content pages that the reseller can link to from her own site.

Online Guides and E-Books

Self-published books, e-books, mini-guides, tutorials and other types of premium content generate a respectable source of income for those with relevant and useful content to share. Focused guides and reference publications in niche areas are a growing demand from qualified customers, especially when these products can be easily pre-evaluated in some form.

For bloggers, news sites and small independent publishers' ebooks and online guides should make a natural monetization channel. Much of the content written for a site is easy to re-edit and re-purpose for commercial use. Reviewing editors, topic-specific bloggers can use their writing talent to put together the best content they have on a specific topic.

Selling ebooks requires good online marketing skills, lots of exposure, visibility and honest testimonials from satisfied buyers. A little army of affiliate resellers can go a long way in helping your ebook get extra exposure and visibility. Plus partnering/bundling your product with those who are already the best in your class helps get more copies out the door.

Donations

If you support a cause that goes beyond the mere reporting of news in your areas of interest, why not consider asking your readers for support?

People like to take a stand for the people whom they think can make a difference, so why not use this strategy to finance some of your effective communication campaigns? PayPal Donations, Amazon's Honor System and BitPass all offer a simple way to add a snippet of code to your site to make it easy for people to donate.

Depending on the system adopted, you may opt to receive money in euros, U.S. dollars, Japanese yen, pounds sterling and other currencies

2 comments:

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