This article is contributed by Craig Watts.
For those new to blogging, the attraction of Adsense isn’t difficult to understand. It’s easy to get accepted, easy to install and easy to get paid regardless of what you are blogging about. As a result, it’s how most bloggers make their first dollar online.
While there’s nothing inherently wrong with monetizing a blog with Adsense, it’s important to be aware of the fact that Adsense isn’t the only game in town. And more importantly, the other options happen to pay a hell of a lot better.
Should you find yourself blogging without much of a return, here are seven alternatives to Adsense that can get you the money that you deserve for your blog.
Amazon’s Affiliate Program
Probably the most well known alternative to Adsense is Amazon’s Affiliate Program. The idea behind it is incredibly simple, direct traffic to Amazon and in return, you get paid a percentage of whatever is purchased.
The primary benefit of Amazon’s Affiliate Program is that you get paid regardless of what your readers buy. In other words, if you’re blogging about socks but one of your readers decides to purchase an expensive pair of shoes, you still get paid.
The result is a blog monetization technique that can be incredibly lucrative.
Other Affiliate Programs
While Amazon is certainly the most well known affiliate program, it’s but one of thousands of companies that are more than happy to pay you a commission for selling their products.
The primary benefit of other affiliate programs is that you tend to get a much bigger piece of the pie. Commissions of up to fifty percent are not unheard of. You can also choose from a wide range of both physical and digital products.
One thing that I don’t like about affiliate programs is that you’re very much at the mercy of conversion rates. And the resulting income fluctuation isn’t exactly ideal for paying your non fluctuating rent.
A much more stable alternative to affiliate marketing can be found in banner advertising. Banner advertising involves renting space on your blog directly to advertisers for a monthly fee. Banner advertising is not only lucrative, it’s stable.
The primary downside to banner advertising however is that it’s not always easy to find a company willing to do business with you. You need to be attracting an audience that advertisers care about and you need to be attracting them in significant numbers.
If you’re attracting enough readers each month, the likes of SponsoredReviews.com can help you to find companies that will pay you to post reviews of their products. You are not obligated to write a positive review either.
The primary benefit of this type of blog monetization is that it can be used in conjunction with any of the other methods outlined above. And provided you choose a product that your readers are likely to be interested in, you’ll be increasing your blog’s value in more ways than one.
Sell Informational Products
While there’s nothing wrong with promoting other people’s products, there’s always going to be more money in promoting your own. Once you begin to attract a loyal readership, it’s therefore well worth asking yourself what kind of information they’d be willing to pay you for.
If you know your way around a keyboard and you can come up with something original, there’s no shortage of money to be made in selling your own e-books. And what’s better, you won’t be lining other people’s pockets in the process.
Sell Physical Products
Most bloggers are well aware of the benefits of selling informational products but did you know that you can easily sell physical products too? Companies such as CafePress.com allow you to design your own clothing, stickers and cups to sell to your blogs readers.
It’s also worth noting that sites such as CafePress are generally free to use. They make money by taking a commission out of every sale generated. In other words, you can design your own merchandise without investing a penny.
Sell Your Time
Finally, there’s the small matter of your time, how much do you think it’s worth? If you’ve been investing heavily in your blog, you’ve also been investing in your reputation. Maybe now is the time to start leveraging it.
Provided your blog is somewhat educational in nature, why not offer people hands on training/consulting for a fee? Or if you have any skills that you feel your readers could benefit from, why not use your blog as a platform to launch your freelancing career?
Author Bio: Craig Watts is a marketing and communications manager with a top SEO company in the country. He enjoys writing blog articles in his free time.
Image Credits via Flickr
- striking banner image courtesy of tmzasso
- physical products sold on line image courtesy of Mat Packer