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Elwyn
04-21-2006, 04:25 AM
Ok, I've heard rumors about some folks making some very good cash for blogging, and that every corporation should have some sort of blog. And, I've read ya'll's comments about some people having advertisments and some sort of affiliate programs on their blog sites.

But, is there any real money that can be made by these blogs? CNN has mentioned bloggers commenting on some news events. Are these bloggers ordinary folks or someone in the news industry?

Is there a place to get blog stats? Are there some super popular blogs?

Etc., etc.

Georganna Hancock
04-21-2006, 04:49 AM
You can learn lots about blogging at Technorati.com. It's a service than monitors blogs in many ways, and they have a listing of the top 100 blogs (as measured by traffic, I think).

Few people have made much money from blogging. It helps to be a "someone" or at least an expert in the subject you blog about. This is to say that the more successful blogs have a purpose beyond airing opinions or serving as digital diaries.

To be a financial success, a blog must draw a lot of traffic (visitors) and sell advertising. Beware of schemes to automate a blog and use Google's Adsense ads. Scams abound, as with everything else.

My own little contribution, Writer's Edge, is approaching its second anniversary, and I take my commitment very seriously, so I think I've learned a thing or three about blogging. I also blogged for the NinerNiner blog network for a while. The pay was pitiful, but fairly reliable.

Good luck!

mdin
04-21-2006, 06:22 AM
It depends on what you're blogging about. It seems most people who make money get the money doing something secondary. PostSecret, Daily Kos, etc. got book deals. I know of one book packager out there who wants a book about a specific subject and then approaches someone who has a well-read blog on that same subject.

obitwriter
04-24-2006, 04:48 AM
A neat place to check out if your site has the traffic to support advertising is adbrite.com (http://adbrite.com). They give typical traffic (daily unique vistitors and pageviews). I think the bottom line is about 5,000 unique visitors per day and you can probably grab about $50 in text ads / day. Less traffic than that and it's tough to make serious cash.

Dawno
04-25-2006, 08:32 AM
Good comments, all. Thanks!

Leva
04-25-2006, 05:51 PM
Adsense works fairly well but the $$ you make varies widely by topic because it's directly influenced by what advertisers bid for a particular keyword. Also, your layout can make a huge difference. But you do need TRAFFIC to make money.

If you assume $5 per thousand visitors in ad revenue -- and that's ballpark, sometimes I make more, sometimes I make less on my own site -- to make $1000 a month US you need 200,000 visits if I'm doing the math right. (Sorry, I don't have a pen handy -- I'm doing this in my head. Someone correct me if I'm wrong there. But it's a big number.)

On the other hand, 200,000 is not an unreasonable amount of traffic if you're an authority site. And it's possible to make more than $5/thousand visitors, depending on your subject.

As a general rule blogs and forums where people are interacting and being social don't make much money. Because they're there for the site and aren't interested in leaving and after awhile they've seen all the ads anyway and get "ad blind." Blogs and websites where people are LOOKING for something make much more. THey might be looking for information about a collectible widget or about traveling to a particular destination or about an upcoming movie ... but they're in a mood to LOOK for things and they click on ads that look like the ads might lead to more

Leva

Queen Bee
04-25-2006, 06:10 PM
There's one blog my dh reads where the guy made $300 the first month he started blogging. Now, he's a venture capitalist, very brilliant and has written several books. He publishes articles/thoughts to his blog DAILY. And every article is super high quality. So he gets lots of traffic coming back every day. Not to mention he said sales of his books have jumped a good bit. I'll see if I can find the link. He goes into plenty of detail.

There's also cuteoverload.com a blog highlighting the cutest stuff on the web. They get tons of traffic and command a high price tag for some of their ads. $57 per day for a small text ad. Again, they've created a community. Post several times a day every day.

razibahmed
04-26-2006, 12:17 AM
Thanks Queen Bee and Leva for your useful information. Last week, there was a discussion in AW Blogging forum about making money from blogging and I commented that the future of professional/commercial blogging is bright because ads are running to them. At this moment, 200,000 visitors per month are distant possibilities for new bloggers but the older your blog gets the more hits you have provided that you have useful content.

obitwriter
04-27-2006, 04:28 PM
I think Leva has the best summary of making money using Adsense. Although she alludes to this, I feel the need to restate the significance content can make on how much one earns per click.

I have this blog detailing my withdrawal from a particular prescription medication which gets very little traffic, but those who visit, are fairly desperate and they actually click the ads on the side. These visitors are interested in both content, the related ads AND the ads are generally for snakeoil, online pharmacies, etc. and all these people are apparently high bidders because each click is worth at least $0.50.

Alternatively, on my more enjoyable site YouDied (http://youdied.blogspot.com), I have only one ad, it's in a non-competitive market and the clicks are on the order of $0.10-$0.30.

So, sometimes content trumps traffic. I find the whole Adsense thing quite fascinating.

Leva
04-28-2006, 09:36 PM
Thanks for the compliment. ;)

The topic also dictates how OFTEN people click.

Believe it or not, the single page that's paying me the most on Firefox News right now is the SUBMISSION GUIDELINES, of all things. Because people who visit the submission guidelines are looking for places to submit. They see the ads offering other markets -- some legit, some not -- promptly click and go have a look. (I'm also constantly banning scammy publishers from this page. Clicker beward.)

A general rule of thumb is that if people are actively looking for something they click more often. This means that a page about an upcoming movie is going to get more clicks than a fictional story. Because people reading about an upcoming movie are likely to click on an ad matching that movie because they want more info. On the other hand, if it's a good story, people reading the story are wrapped up in the story (we hope) and not clicking on things. Plus ad targeting can be very weird on fiction.

Additionally, layout can make a huge difference to your payout. My CTR -- the rate at which visitors click on ads -- was around .5% a few months ago. I've tweaked and fiddled with the ads, trying different colors, positions, and sizes. I've gone from a .5% CTR to a 6-7% CTR. And, also, this means I'm getting a higher pay per click -- ppc rate -- because the higher the CTR the more Google PAYS you per click, due to some fancy algorithm they have.

It's all very fascinating and when you get it right you get a payment from Google. Mine was satisfyingly large this month (it's in my bank account now! yay!) and I'll therefore be accepting a bunch of submissions from writers tonight and sending out some payments of my own. I do like this whole idea. It's fun and potentially quite profitable. Can't beat that combination.

By the way, there's also other ways to make money on blogs besides advertising. One I can suggest is affiliate marketing, and you can accomplish money from affiliate marketing two ways:

1. By directly recommending products.

2. By providing links to sites people use anyway and asking your readers to access those sites through the link on your site so you get a commission. Amazon will pay you about 5% per purchase this way, some of the travel sites like Expedia will pay you, etc.

Leva

Cyjon
04-30-2006, 08:30 PM
Check out Who's There? (http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/files/whos_there.pdf) which is one of the seminal works of viral marketing. Also look at 26 Steps to 15k a Day (http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum3/2010.htm), which is more about content sites but the advice applies to blogs as well.

In summary, yes you can make good money from blogging or content but it's a lot of work and the day you stop working at it is the day your income dries up. It's not a "I'll post now and then on random topics and retire to the Bahamas" thing.

Leva's right that affiliate marketing is a better way to make money than ads. AdSense (and the other ad programs) are awfully fickle and your income is likely to fluctuate wildly. I saw a guy on a forum who wanted to put up a site about surfing and wondered if AdSense would pull in some money. It was suggested that he would make more money if he added a section where he gave capsule reviews of surfing movies (fictional, documentary, or both) and put in Amazon links to them. If you blog on a subject you can tie to product sales, you'll be better off.