If you’re looking for a new side hustle, want out of your current job, or just need to share your passion with the world while making money from it, blogging could be the right gig for you.
It’s very possible to generate an income stream from blogging, but it doesn’t come without a learning curve and some challenges along the way.
It’s likely that your first few months of starting a blog won’t bring in any money, but once you make those first few dollars, you know it’s going to be all uphill from there.
Here you’ll learn how to make money with a blog so you can get a head start on this journey now. The sooner you begin, the sooner you’ll see why it’s all worth it.
This post may contain affiliate links in which I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase.
How to Make Your First $100 Blogging
I don’t think anyone starts a blog with hopes to just make $100. However, everyone has to start somewhere, right?
Once you make your first $100, you can be confident that you’re on to bigger and better things.
You’ll see a ton of blog posts online about How I make $43,567 a month blogging or How we made $26,938 in one month with a blog. Sure, that’s very inspiring to hear and know that it can be done, but it doesn’t really help out absolute beginners.
So I’m sure you’re still in the early phases of deciding whether you should start a blog or how you can monetize your little hobby blog. Who doesn’t want to bring in a little bit of extra cash flow every month?
While blogging is a lot of work to just make $100 a month, once you make that first $100, you’ll soon have that first $200 month, then that $1000 month.
The great thing about the online world is that, the longer your website is established, the more credibility and search engine ranking it will get as long as you’re still keeping it up-to-date.
This means, it’s ok to set your goal low in the beginning. As you see the small growth, you will realize the potential and set your goals and expectations higher and higher for each passing month.
Related post: What is a Blog and What You Should Know About Blogging
1. Start a blog
So this is the obvious first step, but some of you may have not even tackled this one yet.
Honestly, I get that it is a tough decision to start a blog. Just hitting that Pay Now button for my web hosting was like committing to an unexpected journey that I had no idea where it was going to take me.
However, for the small investment (under $4 a month, so under $50 for that one year), I knew that if it didn’t work out, I would barely be losing any money.
I told myself that I would decide within 6 months if it was worth it to keep blogging based on any growth or income that I was seeing.
I’ll admit, I had my doubts. I was in more of an I’m going to fail attitude rather than I’m going to be the most successful blogger attitude.
I never thought I could be one of those bloggers writing income reports one day, but here I am!
I always wondered if those numbers were all made up. Was I only seeing the 1% of people who are actually successful at blogging since you’re obviously not reading the income reports of all the people who made nothing in their first 3 years.
But I knew that I had to stop thinking like that and really commit. As soon as I changed my mindset to be more optimistic, as well as slowly started seeing the views and income trickle in, I knew this was going to be something great.
So just like the lottery says, you gotta be in it to win it, the same is true for blogging! You gotta start it, to make it!
So stop putting off what you clearly are ready to do and start a blog today!
2. Create high-quality content
A successful blog is solely dependent on the content (or blog posts) that you produce.
After you get your blog set up with hosting, WordPress, and your theme, it’s time to get a few blog posts on there so you can get your site up and running.
It’s probably best to have at least 4 or 5 blog posts and an About Me page before you start promoting it and getting traffic.
If someone stumbles upon your site through a link to a specific post, you want them to have some room to click around and find any other related content. You also want it to look like a somewhat established site so the more content, the better.
The key to writing amazing content that will bring you traffic is to produce blog posts that help your reader solve a problem or find an answer. It needs to help them in some way.
Always keep your audience in mind. What do they need? What are they looking for? What questions are they searching for?
If you have the answers, tips, or advice that they’re looking for, they’ll keep coming back. Once you have return visitors and a website that Google sees as reputable, search engines will start to suggest you, leading to increased traffic.
You also want your blog posts to be easy-to-read.
This means that your writing should be broken up into short paragraphs with short sentences with headings and subheadings, as well as be edited and proofread for grammar and spelling mistakes.
3. Dedicate a lot of time
Ok I know this isn’t easy for some of you that may be running a family, household, full-time job, and other hobbies. But hear me out…
The more time and effort you put into your blog in the beginning, the faster it will start to pay off.
Once you start, I want you to whole-heartedly commit to working on your blog as much as you can: during your lunch breaks, commute, or in the wee hours of the morning or night.
The beginning is probably the most excited and motivated that you will be until you start making money. So give it your all to learn and write as much as you can, as soon as you can.
If you get in the habit of procrastinating now, it will take even longer to get the ball rolling.
4. Promote, Promote, Promote
Now that you’ve got a few high-quality blog posts up and a good looking blog, you can start getting it in front of the eyes of new readers!
As a new blog, you’re not going to be coming up as #1 in a Google search result so you need to try direct methods of getting traffic to your site.
The fastest way to get that initial traffic boost is through social media, word-of-mouth, and Pinterest.
Make sure you add a social media plugin to your blog so readers can easily share, pin, or repost your articles to their social media channels.
If there is one single platform that you should spend time on though, it’s Pinterest. Get your posts pinned on there as soon as possible to start getting traffic through Pinterest.
Related Post: How to Get Blog Traffic and Watch Your Site Explode
5. Get Traffic
Before you can monetize your site, you need to have some traffic coming in and be an established site.
Most affiliate networks and ad agencies want to see that you have some traffic and reputability before accepting you, but it’s typically ok if you’re still at the beginning stages of your blog.
Be sure to activate Google Analytics for your site so you can see your page views daily.
6. Apply to Affiliate Networks
Now that you’ve got your site up and running, have at least 5 or 6 blog posts, and you’re getting some page views, you can apply to affiliate networks.
Affiliate marketing works by promoting other people’s products on your blog. You make a commission every time your reader makes a purchase there via your link or referral code.
When someone buys the product, it is tracked back to your site and you earn money off of each purchase.
Most affiliate networks don’t require the user to purchase the exact item you linked in that same transaction. Often the user can return a couple days later and buy a different product that they originally came for and you can still get a commission.
What’s great is that pretty much every product that you use probably has an affiliate program. So you can promote the things you love and actually get paid for it!
It simply requires you to sign up for the affiliate network and use the tracking link provided for the product you are recommending.
There are affiliate networks that host a lot of different brands, like Awin, where you sign up and can automatically be connected with various companies from one platform. Some brands prefer to host their own affiliates.
Here are some popular affiliate networks:
The best way to find your favorite brand’s affiliate program is to search in one of the above networks or go to their website. You should find the link somewhere on the homepage (usually at the bottom).
Once you have been accepted to any ad networks, you can start to build content around those products or brands. Go back into old blog posts and add in your affiliate links.
7. Apply to Google AdSense
This is the quickest and easiest way to start making money with your blog once your page views keep increasing.
You can set your blog up with ads very early on. However, you need to generate a good amount of traffic for it to be a substantial amount.
Advertising is directly correlated to how many views you get on your page. That’s why it’s so important to create great content and bring in a large audience.
Typically, companies themselves don’t place advertisements directly on your site (although this is an option).
The most common way to utilize advertisements in blogging is to collaborate with an ad network. They basically rent space on your website for advertising spots and place their client’s ad display for your readers to see.
There are different levels and types of ad networks.
There are some networks, like Google Adsense, that don’t require a minimum amount of page views. Some ad networks require a higher amount of authority and an application process in order to qualify.
Some ad networks pay you just for placing the ad on your website and some pay more for each person who ends up clicking on the ad.
Google Adsense should be the first ad network to apply for since you will not meet the traffic threshold for higher level networks. Adsense doesn’t pay as well than other companies, but it will get those few extra dollars rolling in which can add up quickly.
Set up the display ads on your site and you’ll see your blog start earning daily.
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Just like that you’ll be on your way to making that first $100 in no time!
Good luck and write your questions in the comments below!