Ben at College Startup is writing a useful series of posts on ‘How to Become a four figure blogger’.
So far he’s put together 2 parts (read them atand ). Here are a couple of key quotes from the series so far with a few of my own comments on each:
“If you have any hope of earning $1,000 a year from your blog you’re going to need traffic. You don’t need much, I am on track to earn over $1,000 a year and I am averaging well below 500 unique visits a day.”
This is stating the obvious but is a key point. Traffic is essential if you want to develop a blog that makes money (unless you’re going to get into some click fraud scheme). A blog doesn’t just make money – it needs people viewing it, interacting with it and participating in it. As traffic grows the potential it has to earn an income also rises.
“People don’t want to click on advertisements in your sidebar. Strategically placing affiliate links within posts gets a much better conversion rate. I’m not the only person who has discovered this – any professional blogger will tell you the same thing. People are much more likely to click on a link within a post than they are to click an obvious advertisement on your sidebar.”
Ben is talking about ‘affiliate programs’ here and not ‘advertising’. A common misconception that many new bloggers have is that once they have traffic all they have to do is put affiliate program buttons in their sidebar and the money will start rolling in. While it is possible to earn some money from such an approach Ben is correct in saying that links within content to affiliate programs are much more effective than sidebars.
This technique is often referred to as ‘deep linking’ and it works best when the links in your posts are genuine, relevant, transparent and helpful to your readers.
I’m looking forward to the rest of Ben’s four figure blogging series.