*Point of Note – All information in this post is my person opinion based off my experiences on WordPress and from working in Digital Marketing. Please take anything said with a grain of salt and make the decision that’s best for you.
I read a lot of blog posts, from people new to the WordPress community, who are looking to monetize their blog almost immediately within creation. While I’m all for the entrepreneurial spirit, I think it’s important to note that you have to pay for the Premium Personal Account that has site monetization and for all of the Business Accounts that have site monetization. This means you don’t just get to run these ads for free.
Before you go and purchase this account that allows site monetization, I think it’s an important question to ask yourself, are you getting enough traffic to your blog to even make back the money you’re paying for the account?
Fun Fact: I once worked for a company in which we ran ads on the company blog. With 20,000+ hits to the blog per week, we were making on average… about 75 cents per day. I say this not to scare people away from the decision to monetize your blog. If you want to do it, do it! But do so being informed. Keep in mind that a WordPress account that allows you site monetization is not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme. You have to put money in to get money out, and, what money you make from ads is based on site traffic and clicks.
In the short term, without established traffic visiting your blog, it could be difficult to garner enough revenue from those advertisements to even pay off the fee the account cost you. I say this not to discourage, but to educate. If you have money to burn, this might not matter to you. But, if you’re living pay-cheque to pay-cheque, or struggling to get by, putting your hard-earned money on a WordPress account that isn’t going to return it’s value might cause you to be discouraged with blogging.
In the long term, if your goal is to monetize your blog that’s a very smart, sustainable approach. Building your audience and your community will ensure an established level of traffic to your blog that can allow you some foreshadowing as to potential ad revenue that you can make. If your blog so happens to get more traffic one day over another, that’s an added bonus. But, at the very least, you’ll be able to estimate possible money earned based from average hits your blog gets.
I think that it’s also important to note professional bloggers don’t make the majority of their money from ad revenue. Ad revenue is often an after-thought in blog revenue from someone who’s professionally blogging. Bloggers will use ads, but these ads are not their primary source of income. These ads are often a secondary, or more likely, a tertiary source of income. If someone is really successful with blogging these ads might just be a fourth or fifth source of income.
Professional bloggers make their substantial pay-cheques from things like sponsorship, brand collaborations, selling of services, EBooks and so on and so forth. And they’re awarded those sources of income because they have an already established audience of people reading their blog. Sponsorship can mean big bucks, depending on the size of your site. While working at the aforementioned company who’s blog that I ran, a sponsored post for us could make anywhere between $500-$5000. $5,000 for a single post was a big difference from the 75 cents per day the blog was making in ads.
So where does that leave you?
Well, if blogging something that you really want to make a go at, it’s going to require some hustle. It’s going to require some strategic digital marketing practices being put in place to grow your blog for not only temporary traffic, but for people who will keep coming back, who want, need and desire to see what you have to share.
It’s going to involve strategic positioning. It’s going to involve taking the initiative to properly use your analytics in your favour, and it’s going to take work. (Unless you’re already famous or the child of a celebrity, that is)
If you’ve got something to bring to the table, something that can benefit others, or bring them joy, connect with them or catch their attention, then you will need to use all of the Digital Marketing tools in your arsenal to make sure people read your work. Because… like I’ve said before… just because you write it does not mean people will read it. There’s plenty of profoundly intelligent people on this platform with a lot to offer the blogging community (and the world) who don’t know how to Digitally Market themselves, and as a result, will never get to share their expertise as far as it deserves.
Like this post and want to read more about Digital Marketing and showcasing your blog? Read any of these posts: