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Read this if you've made little or no money blogging

Can your blog sustain a predictable income? We all know it’s not that easy to pad your bank account by blogging (well, at least those of us who have been doing this for at least a few months quickly realize).

For those of you who have earned money so far, is it enough to offset your costs? If you’re running a self-hosted blog, we’re only talking under $100 US a year. And I’m not even going to get into the countless hours you’ve poured into setting up your site, researching topics, writing articles, and promoting your site. Be honest with yourself, are you earnings worth your effort so far?

So why is it that some people can earn as much as they want while others struggle pulling in pennies? There are many parts to the success formula that it can’t be simplified in a single blog post. However, what I want to do today is to at least offer a few tips for earning an income. Not just any income, a predictable income. That means you earn when you want to earn. It may not be a lot at first but it will be on your schedule.

This predictable income is applicable to large blogs and small blogs. Obviously, the amount of money that comes in is scaled to the number of visitors you’re able to attract to your site. We all know about the passive ways of producing income like Google AdSense and text links. We also know how little you can make with just those so let’s take a look at a few other more active income tactics.

Ways to earn a predictable income blogging

1. Post an article about your affiliate

I don’t do this as much as I probably should but in the past, I’ve written an article about nearly every one of my affiliates.  My GoDaddy affiliate link gives me a steady number of sales per month. However, when I write about using GoDaddy for hosting, I get a spike for a few days every time. BTW, an average GoDaddy sale nets me $70.

Since I only post a handful of articles a month, you won’t see more than a few of these from me a year. However, if you’re a more frequent poster, feel free to try an ‘affiliate plug’ article once a month.

2. Ask for advertisers for your ad blocks

Some advertisers will give you a certain amount per month for an ad block. You just have to make it known that space is available. If you have six ad blocks, you can always fill five with your affiliates and leave one open that’s labeled for sale. The amount depends on your site’s traffic but $25/month for a 125×125 block above the fold is reasonable for a site that’s under 100k Alexa ranking and at least Google PageRank 2.

Of course, if your Alexa and PR aren’t where you want them to be, then you may need to ask for less.

3. Offer to write a sponsored article

Post an article offering to write a sponsored article. If you are a good writer (and have supporting evidence based on your other articles), someone may pay you good money to talk about their site. Remember, they are not going to pay you just for your awesome writing skills. You’ll also have to provide a few backlinks.

I’ve written a few of these over the last few months. Each of those netted me a nice boost during those periods. Again, the amount depends greatly on your Alexa and PR but if you’re just starting out, $25 for a 500-word, 3-backlink article is a nice start. Once you’re more experienced and your site has more traffic, charging over $100 per article is perfectly reasonable.

Find you're earning a sweet spot

Personally, as many of you regulars know, I don’t sustain this site just to earn an income. I actually enjoy it and I really don’t do it just for the money. I treat this site as a fun job — just not my full-time job. This site provides me with a satisfactory level of earnings based on the time I’m willing to spend on it. I enjoy my other jobs as well and this is just one egg out of many eggs in many baskets. Only you can decide how much money is worth your time spent on your site. Hopefully, this article makes it easier for you to make that determination.

So, have you tried any of these?

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