How to Make Money Blogging: A Beginner’s Guide

This must be one of the most searched phrases by bloggers: earning from your hobby is living the dream, right?

But where do you start?

Firstly, you need to have a catchy name, something that people will remember. If it’s too complicated or there’s room for spelling errors, it may hamper your traffic in the long run.

Secondly you’ll need to break away from the confines of Blogger or WordPress and go self-hosted. Don’t worry, this isn’t as scary as it sounds (but don’t get confused between what qualifies as self-hosted and paying for a vanity URL).

Going self-hosted means you need to pay another company to host your site. You can move any content you’ve already written and take it with you, moving your hosting is relatively easy (it has to be, otherwise people wouldn’t do it).

A vanity URL means that you’ve paid to make your URL look pretty by dropping the .wordpress etc. and making it look like you’ve got a .com, when in reality, you’re still being hosted by whoever you set your blog up with.

It’s important to recognise the difference, because most of the companies who want to pay you ask for ‘self-hosted only’.

But how do bloggers make any money?

There are a number of ways to supplement your income using your blog, the most common two are getting paid to write content and receiving earnings from hosting advertisements.

Another perk of being a blogger is getting free stuff to review, but we’ll get to that.

Getting paid for content:

This is something that can be quite hard to track down, if you don’t know where to look. In order for this to avoid being location specific, I’ll just tell you the search phrases so that you can find the most relevant results for you. Start with Facebook and search “Blogger Opportunities” or to narrow it down, include your location in the search (I’m thinking country or state, rather than town/city). Next search twitter for the hashtags #bloggersrequired and #bloggerswanted. Both of these methods will give you opportunity to apply for the assignments you fancy.

If you have a ‘Contact Me’ page on your blog, make sure you keep your details up to date and list an email address that you don’t mind being reached at, that way, if a company stumbles upon your site and would like to work with you, they can approach you.

Hosting advertisements:

I’m still playing about with ads on my site, I haven’t really found anything that’s felt like a perfect fit, so the search continues. The most obvious one is AdSense, owned by Google. It allows you to not only monetize your blog, but also gives you the opportunity to make money on videos you post on YouTube too. Perfect for blogger who post the odd video (or straight up vloggers).

Another company I’ve dabbled with is Impact Radius, they allow you to apply for campaigns that fit in with your blog and each incentive is different, depending on the company you work with.

There’s loads more out there, I recommend having a peruse of Google and shopping around before you commit.

Everyone’s favourite: FREE STUFF!

Free stuff seems like the easiest perk to get from your blog. Companies like Type the Hype and The Blogger Programme have a fair bit of choice. It’s the same principle as the others: you search for an assignment you’d like and apply for it. Simple as that.

Of course there’s a much cheekier way to get the freebies you want, and that is just asking! Find the company on twitter and ask if there’s an email any PR requests should be sent to. It doesn’t hurt to put the feelers out and if the item you’re asking for is inexpensive, it’s well within their interest to send a free one your way.

Originally published at on March 31, 2016.