It is imperative that people don't rely on a single source of income. Financial experts across the globe exhort people to have a second source of income. While teaching or some other part time gigs can earn you a decent sum, blogging is one of the best ways to earn money from the comfort of your home.
What Should I Blog About?
The first question people ask is "What do I blog about? I ain't no expert in any field" The answer to that question can be best answered only by you. You need to ask yourself, what you are passionate about & what topics do love reading, talking about.
In my case, I realized that I love talking, tweeting, posting on social media about politics, entertainment & travel. I used to fervently tweet about these issues on social media. I started off with signing up for a free blog on wordpress.com. I blogged under an anonymous name & shared my posts on my personal social media handles. I was sceptical & conscious about the response my blog would get & hence decided to stay anonymous.
After a few posts on the free wordpress blog, I decided to buy a domain. I bought a domain from godaddy.com & even purchased a wordpress blog from godaddy.com. Since I was passionate about blogging about politics I christened my blog as The Opinionated Indian (theopinionatedindian.com)
We initially blogged about politics, celebrity gossip, finance & travel. But soon realized that there are several entertainment portals which posted blind items of celebrities ie celebrity gossip without mentioning the names of the celebs involved. We started posting daily about these blind items with our guesses of the celebs mentioned in the blind item. This topic enabled us to post new content daily. This led to a good amount of traffic on our blog. We have now pivoted into an entertainment portal. We do cover politics & travel sporadically, but celebrity gossip is our mainstay.
Blogger V Wordpress
But now that we have tried both the options, we can pick a winner among the two.
The features & benefits of wordpress are much greater than blogger. Read on to know why we feel that Wordpress blogs are better.
Plugins: Firstly the sheer number of plugins you can install on your wordpress blog makes it an attractive option. Blogger on the other hand has limited plugins or gadgets.
Customization: While it is very simple to add a drop down menu in wordpress, it is a task to add one in blogger. The level of customization offered by wordpress is far superior than blogger.
Migration: Migrating from a wordpress blog to blogger is far simpler than the other way round.
SEO: This is one of the biggest areas which wordpress scores heavily over blogger. Blogger offers little control or assistance in terms of SEO as compared to SEO.
We would suggest wordpress to only those bloggers who are experienced & ready to give several hours everyday to their blog. Unless your blog totally stands out or yours is the only blog on that said topic, the ROI on blogger will beat the ROI on wordpress hands down!
Unlike what people would want you to believe, it is very difficult to make money solely off blogging. Very few actually end up making enough to live off it. But yes for those select few life is awesome.
But even if you are not the topmost blogger you can earn a decent sum.
How Many Page Views Before My Blog Starts Earning
We started getting approached for sponsored reviews once our page view numbers exceeded 40,000 per month. Based on your marketing spends & quality of articles it will take 6 months to a year to reach this number.
After reaching 40,000 page views, I was approached by a agency based out of Italy which represented casinos. I am paid $100 - $110 per article. I generally am given two articles to publish every month. These articles helped me break even in the first year itself.
Apart from casinos, I also got approached by local ad agencies. One can expect Indian agencies to pay $25-$50 per article, based on your traffic & alexa ranking. Once you reach upwards of 100,000 page views a month, you can demand a lot more.
Google AdSense is the most preferred source of income for bloggers. But sadly it is not a great source of income. We were elated to get approved for a google adsense account. But our happiness didn't last very long.
As long as your content is unique & you are meeting their guidelines, your google adsense is likely to get approved. But if your traffic isn't upwards of 40,000 page views you will barely make any money. To give you an idea, if your blog gets 50,000 page views you may earn $12-$15 ased on the clicks & ad placement.
We wouldn't recommend you to apply for a google adsense account till you cross a minimum of 40,000 page views. Google AdSense will not credit any money till you reach $100. Although one must admit it is the safest & most reliable way to earn money off your blog.
Taboola, Outbrain, Vuukle
Native ad publishers like Taboola, Outbrain, Vuukle require a minimum of 200,000 page views every month. Lat heard the criteris is now to generate 1,000,000 page views.
While these are again reliable sources, it is very difficult to get an approval from them.
Affiliate marketing is another source of income for bloggers. The best among is the Amazon Affiliate network.
Affiliate marketing too is easier said than done. Unless you are writing reviews for the specific product, it is very difficult to make money off affiliate marketing. In our one year of blogging, we are yet to make a single penny off afffiliate marketing from our blog.
1) Sponsored reviews are the best sources of income for your blog.
2) Apply for google adsense only after your blog has crossed 40,000 age views a month. If you run ads when your traffic is low, it will inconvenience the visitor & get barely any income in return.
Next: How To Increase Blog Traffic