making money from your blog

3 Essential Rules for Making Money with Your Blog

3 Essential Rules for Making Money with Your Blog

making money with your blogHi everyone!

Finally! I’m back in the land of the blogging!

As my regular readers will know, my blog went through some site redesigns a few months back and then not long before that, a server migration. Additionally, around a year ago I also started working for Internet Profits LTD. So, it was proving difficult for me to keep up my blogging routine.

As it would turn out, it was going to prove even harder, as earlier in the year my blog encountered some difficulties which meant that I was unable to do any work on it at all. Plus, with various work project and responsibilities, I found it hard to dedicate the time to sit down and get to the bottom of what the problem was with my blog.

To cut a long story short, it’s now fixed. Woo-hoo!

Plus, taking the time out from blogging (even though it wasn’t voluntary!) has actually enabled me to balance things out somewhat and be even better equipped to serve you.

So, let’s get this show well and truly back on the road, eh?

Making Money with Blogging

Okay, there are many reasons for having a blog. To be fair, not everyone wants to make money from them. Given the potential, it would certainly make sense to do so, even if it’s a few bucks here and there, but if a blog is a hobby and the owner really has no interest in making money from it, then fair enough.

However, I’m guessing that you’re here because you are either already making money online, trying to do so, or have an interest in starting.

Am I right?

making money with your blogIn that case, it would make sense that you use your blog as a means to make money.

Now, if you’ve been following me for any length of time you’ll know that I am all about giving value first and foremost. The relationship that you have with your audience is of paramount importance.

Sure, we want to make money as part of the big picture, but when serving our audience, the job at hand absolutely must be to be the best we can be, give the best we can and help our reader/subscriber/customer get one step closer to his/her desired outcome.

That should go without saying no matter what area of our business we’re considering.

But let’s, for a moment, think about that big picture – making money. After all, if we aren’t trying to make money then we don’t have a business – a business needs to make money, right?

So, if you’re a blogger, you really should be thinking about making money with your blog.

However, I sometimes see bloggers making a vital mistake…

They get so wrapped up in giving that they have nothing in place for themselves.

What do I mean by this?

Well, let me share with you a piece of advice that I was given many years ago. This advice wasn’t actually anything to do with business, but the principle makes sense here.

Back in the early 1990’s I started suffering from depression and anxiety and had to contend with this for a number of years. Now, there’s an aspect of my personality that sometimes made this even harder to cope with:

I’m a caring person.

Of course, there are many caring people about and it isn’t unusual. But, at times, I have found this to be a failing with me.

How so?

In that I would give of myself when I really had little, if anything to give. If someone asked me for a favour, I would do it. If someone wanted my time, I would give it. Even if they didn’t ask, I would offer.

None of that’s a bad thing, of course, and I am still very much like this.

However, the advice I was given is: you have to save a little bit for yourself.

making money with your blogWhat this means is, if you are in giving mode all the time and don’t give yourself enough attention, then you will find that you not only have nothing left to give to anyone else but you have nothing in your reserves for yourself when you need it the most.

What this meant was learning to say “No” at times. Now, that doesn’t mean being unkind or uncaring. It simply means recognising my limits and being balanced and modest.

None of us can give all the time. We all need something for ourselves. That isn’t being selfish, it’s just being realistic. And believe me, when you’re suffering from depression and you’re giving your all to others too, it wipes you out physically, mentally and emotionally.

It isn’t healthy or wise.

So, what does this have to do with making money with your blog?

Well, I see lots of bloggers come up with great content on their blogs. They write well, they present well, they make great videos, they post regularly and they engage with their visitors. Yet there’s something missing…

“I’ve been blogging for ‘X’ months and I’m yet to see a sale! Something’s wrong but I don’t know what it is!”

I have come across that lament many times, whether directly or indirectly. It’s one that, in each case, has the same root cause…

They are not monetising their blog!

making money from your blogSerious question here, people: if you have a blog and want to make money from it, yet have no ways of doing so on your blog, just how do you expect to make money from it? Where do you expect the sales are going to come from, exactly?

Now, that may seem like I’m stating the obvious here and, I suppose I am. But it’s a very real issue – some bloggers are trying to build up an online business for themselves and use their blog as an integral part of this, yet they aren’t actually monetising it!

I’ve had people lament that they’re not making any money from their blogging so I’ve taken a look at their blog – no banners, no monetised hyperlinks, no list-building entry points….

Now, I don’t actually know just why it hasn’t occurred to them that if you want to make money from your blog you have to have these things. But, for some reason, it appears that it is a trend with many bloggers.

Look, if you want your blog to make money then you need to set up ways to make that happen!

Sure, engagement is vital and you need to make connections. This will give you a good foundation through which you can tell people about your offers, but why leave it at that? Why leave a whole load of other opportunities out of the picture?


making money from your blogBanners can be your SSM. What is your “SSM”?

Your “Silent Sales Machine”.

Meaning, they will sit on your blog and do their job 24/7, whether you are there or not. While you have been doing your groundwork and engaging with your audience, making connections, being on video or live broadcasts, using social media and so forth, your banners have been sitting there on your blog.

All that groundwork that you have been doing will serve to make people more likely to click on one of your banner because they will feel that they know, like and trust you enough to trust your recommendations or promotions.

You see, many bloggers are doing a fantastic job with the groundwork. But they are leaving an enormous amount of money on the table by not having so much as a banner in their sidebar.

Monetised Hyperlinks

making money with your blogHaving a mix of “follow” and “nofollow” outbound links on your blog looks good in the eyes of the search engines. Also, internal linking between your blog posts is absolutely essential, not only in the eyes of the search engines but for your visitor engagement and keeping them on your site.

But another type of link you need to be mindful of is monetized hyperlinks.

If you have been talking about a certain subject and you have an offer that you’re promoting that would tie in perfectly with what you’ve been talking about, pick a suitable word or phrase and create a hyperlink to that offer!

The thing with all types of outbound links is that you need to do everything in moderation. Don’t go crazy placing links in every sentence, but just approach your blogging with the thought of hyperlinks in mind. You will then start to see appropriate places to place links almost automatically.

Rule #1: Don’t be afraid of selling


Opt-In Forms

making money with your blogYou’ve heard it said, “The money is in the list“.

From day one, you should be building your e-mail list. Your list is a way in which you can deliver value to your audience, increase the important Know, Like and Trust factor and yes, make money! So it makes sense to be building your list right from the get-go.

Yet, a mistake I see beginner and more established bloggers making is not having an opt-in form anywhere on their blog.

Never mind “an” opt-in form – give your visitors multiple opportunities to opt in! Again, don’t go crazy with this, but don’t be afraid to have even three or four places at once where your visitors can opt in.

For example:

  • You might have an opt-in form in the traditional place, in your sidebar (1)
  • You might also have a drop-down or fixed bar at the very top of your blog that contains another opt-in form, perhaps with a different message (2)
  • At the bottom of a particular post, you could have a further opt-in form embedded (3) I wouldn’t necessarily suggest doing this for each post, but where appropriate it certainly wouldn’t look out of place.
  • Perhaps you have a pop-up or some kind of overlay displaying when your visitors go to leave. This could contain and opt-in form (4)

So, in the above example, a visitor to a particular blog post could very well be exposed to four different opt-in forms. Each form could even be for a different thing, or for the same thing but with a different presentation. This is something that you could split-test. Even the very use of multiple opt-in forms could be a split-test in itself.

Now, I’m not saying that you should have a particular number of opt-in forms or even that you should have multiple forms at all. The point is, you need to be building your list and once you start building your list you can monetize it. But in order to do that, you need to have entry points to your list.

Rule #2: Don’t be afraid of asking your visitors to opt in



making money with your blogThis is a trap that I see many bloggers fall into, especially at the beginning – their content is all over the place.

First of all, you need to be clear as to the purpose of your blog and precisely what it is that you are offering to your audience. Don’t know? You should!

The problem is, bloggers hear things like “Content is king” and “be consistent in posting”, so they end up posting any old thing. Sure, it may be good, but here’s the vital question: is it actually relevant?

For example, let’s say you have a blog that has the tagline, “Daily Tips for Helping You Make Money Online” (I’ve just picked that out of the air). What do you think your blog posts should contain? A video that you’ve found on YouTube might be interesting and all, but does it have anything to do with your message?

I’ve visited blogs that make claims, for example, that they will help people make money online. Yet their content has absolutely NOTHING to do with what their blog is claiming! Sure, it might be motivational, it might be valuable in itself, it might be well-constructed. But unless it is actually relevant to what your audience is expecting to see according to what your blog claims, then it doesn’t have much value.

Even if you do have banners and opt-in forms on your blog, if your content isn’t relevant to what your blog is supposed to be all about then you’re going to have a hard time getting people to stick around long enough to take action on any of them.

Another mistake I see some bloggers making is having their blog go off in too many directions. They have a section for “Making money online”, a section for “Motivation”, a section for “Interesting links”, a section for “Recipes”, a section for “Health and wellness”……

Do you see the problem?

Not only is a blog with all those categories going to be overloading its visitors, it’s all over the place. If the blogger is in the Health niche then why would they be talking about making money online? If the blogger is in the Make Money Online niche, then why would they have a section about recipes?

Don’t complicate things, don’t confuse things. Be clear on what it is that you are wanting to achieve with your blog, what your visitors should expect when they get there and then stick to it.

Rule #3: Ensure that your content is congruent with your message


making money with your blogDo you see how making addressing those areas could make all the difference between making money with your blog and spinning your wheels?

I have seen blogs that are guilty of all of the above at once – they don’t have banners, don’t have a single opt-in form, don’t have any hyperlinks, are full of irrelevant content. And the blogger wonders, “Why is my blog not making me any money?”

It should be obvious but, for whatever reason, it isn’t always.

So, if you are a blogger and you are struggling to make money from your blog, ask yourself if your blog is guilty of any of the above issues.

Of course, there are other factors that come into play when it comes to making money with your blog. But you don’t really have any basis to be asking why your blog isn’t making money if you aren’t doing a single thing to monetise it!

It would be like opening up a shop, having no stock and then complaining that your shop isn’t making you any money! If you want to make money from a shop, you have to have stuff for sale. Likewise with your blog.

Make sense?

Make Money from Your Blog!

I hope this content has been helpful to you, especially if you’re someone who’s just getting started and perhaps isn’t yet making money with your blog.

If there’s anything else I can help you with or any subjects that you’d like me to cover in a blog post, please feel free to let me know.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post. Did any of this resonate with you? Which points did you find the most helpful? Please let me know by leaving a comment in the section below.

Also, if you got value from this post then it would be awesome if you shared it across your social media accounts so that others can benefit from it too. 🙂

Until next time!

About Me

Glenn is a Certified iPro Masters Partner

23 thoughts on “3 Essential Rules for Making Money with Your Blog”

  1. Hey Glenn, first time landed on your blog. You write really very well. Touched lots of unspoken aspects on blogging. Many bloggers are out there who don’t even have one opt-in on their blogs. Email marketing is a vital source of getting leads, sales and traffic as well.

    The content not only gives a lecture on making money online, It also tells about the way that we should implement on every blog. I love the actionable blogs posts which I saw on your blog.

    These are the basic steps that every blogger should follow from the day one of blogging. Why should wait for having some traffic and content. We must have all these things already so we can entice visitors to stay longer and buy from our links.

    thanks for this amazing piece of content.

    I will keep visiting your blog.

    Nikhil recently posted…16+ Creative Title Generator Tools. Which’s Your Favorite?My Profile

    1. Hi Nikhil,

      Welcome to my blog, thanks so much for stopping by 🙂

      You’re right, so many people don’t have an opt-in form on their blogs yet, as you say, e-mail marketing is so very powerful. Of course, it’s entirely possible that some bloggers may not want to make money from their blog or to build an e-mail list, which is totally fine. But for those who want to use a blog as part of their money-making strategy, they can’t really wonder why they’re not getting subscribers, leads or sales if they fail to implement the necessary things on their blog that will get them such things!

      Thanks for your fantastic comment! Please stop by again soon. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…3 Breakout Bloggers of 2015My Profile

    1. Hi Mike,

      That’s why I stay away from worrying about trying to please Google. As you say, genuine work, good content and good promotion are key and, when done properly, will give you ultra-high quality traffic that goes on to make you money.

      Thanks a lot for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…What Hiking Can Teach You about Online BusinessMy Profile

  2. hey,
    thanks for this post. These rules are very helpful. I will try these rules to get better result. Thanks for helping me. I think blogging is a good way to make money but tips are very necessary to make money with blog.
    Haider Raza recently posted…Learn About Computer Programming MythMy Profile

    1. Hi Junaid,

      They definitely work 😉 However, they won’t work on their own – there has to be other things such as promotion and engagement in place too. Again, this is another error that many make – having monetization in place but expecting the blog to just sit there and do all the work for them, which it won’t.

      Many thanks for stopping by! 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…Is There Something Missing From Your Strategy?My Profile

      1. Hi,
        I’m agreed with you, too many advert is also the main point for the loss of returning visitors So from now I have started to use less advert in my post to make my visitors free of this irritate view.

  3. Your article is great. I think it needs add a rule: promotion. Without it, the blog will not get traffic and can not make money. Jew 2 cents. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi Thomas,

      That is very true, promotion is essential. But I’ve seen people do lots of promotion and still not make a dime. Why not? Because they’ve had no means of making money in place on their blog!

      So whilst it’s definitely true that you need to promote, you need to have the means of making money in place first, otherwise no matter how much traffic comes, it’s not going to do anything that makes you any money once it gets there.

      Thanks so much for stopping by and for your great comment! 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…What Hiking Can Teach You about Online BusinessMy Profile

  4. From zero to dollars is something which all bloggers lurks for. I think right ad placement is one of the most important thing which is needed. I have no traffic on mine but I knew a blog which went upto 100,000 visitors a week to zero because he was earning zero. The problem was ad placement.
    Thanks for this article Glenn.

    1. Hi Shekhar,

      You definitely need to have some kind of ad placement if you want to make money from your blog – it should stand to reason, yet so many overlook this fact, hence why I wrote this post.

      You say that you have no traffic on your blog. This prompts the question: what are you doing to try to get traffic? The issue of traffic can follow the same principle as I covered in this post about making money – just as you’re not going to make money without any monetization, you’re not going to get traffic without a traffic strategy.

      The post I’ve linked to below covers a vital aspect to do with not only getting traffic, but also how to treat it. I’m sure you’ll find this useful. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…5 Benefits You Ought to Know About EngagementMy Profile

  5. I just started blogging recently. I am learning day by day. Well you described more important thing which will help for newbie. Thanks for this awesome article and hope you will check my website by clicking my name on comment and suggest some tips.

    1. Hi Lokman,

      Thanks very much for stopping by and leaving a comment. Sorry for the late reply.

      It’s great that you’ve started blogging, I hope all is going well for you, I will take a look at your blog for sure. 🙂


  6. Wow! Wow! Wow!
    The man’s “back with a bang”!! Welcome back and great to have you back in action in “blogosphere” (hahaha). I loved the blog post. Not only did you focus on the absolute core issues (pitfalls), especially for bloggers just starting out, but you also provided very actionable tips – this is super valuable.
    What I liked the very best is that you shared a very personal part of your past, i.e. the unsolicited “tryst” with anxiety and depression. It is so true that you give very most of what you have – and can give – to others, and that you are a very caring person – I’ve seen you in action as your business partner and friend and it is both amazing and humbling to watch you in action.
    Can’t wait to see your next blog post.
    Very best wishes,

    1. Hey Sameer,

      Thanks for the glowing praise! 🙂

      Yes, I always try to give something that people can take away and apply. Information is all well and good, but giving people things that they can actually DO takes things up a notch.

      My next post is a bit late but by the time you see this it may well be live. If it isn’t then it will be very shortly! 😉

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…6 Blogging Resources You Need to Visit TodayMy Profile

  7. Hey, Glenn.
    While your blog has a great new look, I do miss the old one …. it was so familiar – because of my umpteen visits here to learn from you.

    Thanks for teaching us and urging us to give value first and foremost and build a relationship with our readers – and I totally resonate with you about giving, and giving, and giving. I personally got burnt out with this trait!

    Ha – didn’t perceive Banners as my SSM! It’s comforting to know that it’s working for us in the background.

    I understand about “no follow” for internal linking, but couldn’t quite understand whether to use the “follow” or “no follow” for outbound links. You said a mix is good. Can you explain this in relation to the outbound links?

    In my enthusiasm to blog, I reckon I’m guilty of not following all your 3 Rules. I’ll have to constantly keep this in mind, for the future.

    Thanks, Glenn (especially for being a caring person! You’ve probably ditched that persona by now, hahaha!)

    1. Hi Susette,

      My blog may have another new look soon…..! 😉

      Just to clarify: you don’t want to be applying the nofollow attribute to your internal links – you most definitely want them followed! It’s your external links where you need to use your discretion. A mix is good because it appears natural to the search engines, rather than have all your outbound links as “follow” which can appear manipulative. If you want to link to a site but the connection could be seen as tenuous (in that the your site and the destination aren’t really related), then I’d suggest making it nofollow. Hopefully that answers your question. If not then I know you’ll be sure to ask further! Haha! :-p

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Thanks as always for your visit and your comment. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…“Are You Talking to Me?”My Profile

  8. Hi Glenn,

    Great to see you back dude! Saying NO is one of my fave ways to make some scrilla dilla through my blog 😉 Because when I say NO to non matches I attract matches. Meaning, letting go tasks that drain my energy makes room for activities that make me feel alive. I was so heavily focused on action for SO long I felt saying No was impossible, because I needed to be an opportunity whore, but since learned that managing my energy and prospering hinges on me being, then doing. Or, being a freed, fun-loving, calm blogger who has discernment, and simply nods to the most fun opportunities and lets go all others.

    You see too, as your presence expands at an exponential rate you physically can’t say Yes to all opps. Unless you have a company of 50 to 100 employees behind ya, you not only will be saying No to folks, you’ll skip over 5 to 10 or more emails, for every No email, and every Yes. Just part of the business for me these days; can’t respond to hundreds of social engagements through social and email, so I gotta pick a few to respond to and take it from there.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…Get Your Mind Right Get Your Business Right Live Webinar Class with Ryan Biddulph and Kelli Cooper Launching on November 21stMy Profile

    1. Hey Ryan,

      Great to see you as always, buddy! 🙂

      That’s certainly an important point you mentioned about you being so heavily focused on action that you didn’t feel that you could say “No”. What I always say is that there is action and then there is the right kind of action. If we’re not focusing on the right kind of action then it can certainly be very draining.

      We just can’t give, give, give all the time. There has to be a point where we draw the line. That doesn’t mean that we are uncaring or selfish, it just means that we are being practical. And knowing where to draw the line means that we can be in a better position to serve our audience/customers even better.

      Thanks for sharing your insights and experience, it’s always valuable to get your thoughts! Take it easy, my friend. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…5 Benefits You Ought to Know About EngagementMy Profile

  9. Hi Glenn.

    Glad to see you’re blogging again.

    This is one thing I do need to work on with my blog. I am guilty of all three things mentioned here. I had an opt-in form but replaced it a while back. I don’t use many banners at all to promote anything that can make me money. The main reason, as I have mentioned to Donna Merrill, is that I’m actually at a cross roads as to whether I want to continue my blog as a resource for others interested in the MMO niche, specifically, affiliate marketing and blogging. I wrote a post a while back explaining the things I’ve been going through with my health and how it can relate to people trying to run an online or offline business. We talked through the comments about this and she said I should keep it going and link back to that particular post if I write any updates to my health.

    It’s been very rough since I quit my job. My own fault, no passing the buck. I’m just trying to find my passion again. Blogging just to blog about something without that passion isn’t going to do anyone any good, my readers or myself.

    Sorry, I rambled. Anyway, this is another excellent post that many have been waiting for and you delivered, as usual.

    Have a great weekend….Chris
    Chris DeeWaard recently posted…Affiliate Marketing BasicsMy Profile

    1. Hey Chris my friend!

      Always good to see you here and always a pleasure to read your thoughts. 🙂

      I would agree with Donna, I think that’s very good advice.

      With regards to blogging generally, you do have to enjoy it. It is, potentially, a very powerful tool, but if your heart isn’t in it it’s going to become more of a chore than a pleasure and this will come across in your content.

      The key to anything you do is you must have a strategy and stick to it. You must know what it is you’re going to do, why, when and how. So, if you decide, for example, that you want blogging to be part of your business strategy, then you have to plan and strategise accordingly.

      It’s definitely no good blogging for the sake of blogging, as you say. You need to have a point. Your blog needs to have a point. So, if you do have your blog as part of your strategy, then what else will you have? What do you need to learn? Where do you need to improve? What do you need to implement? Take all of those things and blog about them. For example, do you need to learn about how to make better videos? Then go ahead and learn and practice. Each time you do it, make a note of what you’ve learned and also your results. Then your next blog post can be about that very subject.

      Keep doing that with everything you do. Learn how to do something, then blog about it. Have good results? Blog about them. Have bad results? Blog about them. If you watch an interesting and motivating presentation by someone and learn some valuable stuff from it, blog about that.

      In short, so long as you have a definite strategy you should never be short of ideas for stuff to blog about. If you follow a proven traffic strategy, you should get traffic, engagement, clicks, etc. Again, note all of this down and then blog about it. Write an e-book about it. Make a video about it. Do you see what I’m getting at here? It all points to the same thing – having a definite plan of action and then doing everything accordingly.

      Once you have your plan and your strategy, you stick with it and you start to see the results, this can give you the motivation you need and then it becomes almost like a snowball effect and it all does get a lot easier and comes a lot more naturally. And this, of course, applies to any type of blog you have, not only the MMO niche.

      But, in line with all of that and bearing in mind the subject of the post, you absolutely have to monetize what you do! Otherwise, if you’re wanting to make money then you’re going to be left wanting because you can’t make money with your blog unless you have ways on it that can make you money!

      Hopefully that all made sense and helps a little. Of course, you know that you can reach out to me any time for help my friend. 🙂

      Glenn Shepherd recently posted…What Hiking Can Teach You about Online BusinessMy Profile

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