Have you ever looked at successful bloggers, YouTubers, and influencers and wondered, “How can I make money from my WordPress blog?”
There are many different ways to earn money online. Blogs have been around for over 20 years. But even in the age of social media and video, blogging is still a great strategy for making money.
In this article, we’ll show you 12 ways to make money from your WordPress blog.
How Do Bloggers Make Money?
There are two main ways that bloggers make money: from the content itself and from the audience you build around the content. You can definitely use both strategies to make money from your blog.
To earn revenue from your content, you can run ads through Google AdSense or similar services. Advertisers will pay you for clicks or views on ads your blog displays. You can also sign up for affiliate links and earn commission when a visitor purchases something through that link.
You can also monetize your blog audience. Readers may purchase products or services directly from you. Brands may also pay to sponsor content on your blog based on the size and interests of your audience. You can collect donations from readers or run crowdfunding campaigns. Finally, you can sell memberships or subscriptions granting access to premium content, events, or products.
Building your email list is critical if you want to make money from your blog. Email allows you to reach your readers instead of just waiting for them to wander onto your blog. Learn more ways to grow your email list with our complete guide.
How Can I Make Money From My WordPress Blog?
Now, let’s take a look at some specific ways to make money from a WordPress blog.
If you’d like to learn about a specific strategy, please use the table of contents below.
Table of Contents
- Run Paid Ads
- Share Affiliate Links
- Sell eBooks and Digital Downloads
- Sell Online Courses
- Sell Merchandise
- Market Your Services
- Sell Sponsored Content
- Receive Donations
- Offer Memberships
- Host a Virtual Conference
- Create a Podcast
- Start a YouTube Channel
1. Run Paid Ads
Perhaps the oldest method of making money from blogging is advertising.
It’s now easy to place advertising on your site with services like Google AdSense. Learn how to add Google AdSense to your WordPress site.
How much you earn from ads will depend on how much traffic your blog gets. Monitor your site traffic with the best WordPress analytics plugin MonsterInsights.
You also need to commit to creating quality content. It doesn’t matter how many visitors you get if all of them leave your blog immediately.
You also want to balance ad placement with user experience. Don’t spam readers with so many ads that they can’t even read your posts.
For example, the cooking blog Omnivore’s Cookbook has ads in the sidebar and throughout the post. But the inline ads are between sections and don’t interrupt the reading experience too much.
2. Share Affiliate Links
Affiliate links contain special code that links the user’s purchase to you. It’s a way of letting retailers know that this customer bought a product using a link from your blog.
In return for sharing affiliate links, you receive a payment when someone makes a purchase with that link. This payment can be a flat fee or a percentage of the customer’s purchase value.
To make the most out of your affiliate links, write reviews or recommendations for products that you use. Be honest about both the good and the bad parts of your experience with the product. That way, your content will be more credible. Readers will then be more likely to click your affiliate links and buy products based on your reviews.
Be strategic and share products that you actually use and enjoy. Don’t just cram dozens of affiliate links in every post.
In this example, WPBeginner has placed an affiliate link for BlueHost in a blog post about building WordPress websites.
3. Sell eBooks and Digital Downloads
Another easy way to earn money from your blog is to sell eBooks and digital downloads.
You could compile popular blog content into an eBook that readers can purchase. The convenience of having the best content curated and formatted for easy reading would be worth paying for. Ebooks could also contain entirely new content that isn’t available on your public blog.
This strategy can also work in reverse. If you’ve already published a physical or digital book, you can write blog posts to attract people who would also like your book.
Digital downloads such as checklists, calendars, templates, or printables are easy to sell on WordPress. Use a plugin like Easy Digital Downloads to manage your digital download store.
As you can see below, Mandarin Mama offers some of her best blog posts along with new content in an eBook available on Amazon.
4. Sell Online Courses
Online courses are a great way to earn money from your blog.
Similar to eBooks, you can create online courses to teach about your content area. The advantage of online courses is that you can use video, audio, and interactive elements that aren’t available in eBooks.
You can also sell live workshops to your blog audience.
In the example below, the child development blog Play Learn Thrive offers an online course that dives deep into creating a purposeful play space.
5. Sell Merchandise
Loyal readers might want to show off their love for your blog with branded merchandise.
Print on demand companies can make T-shirts, stickers, tote bags, posters, and other products with your blog branding. These companies can even ship for you, and integrate well with Shopify and other eCommerce platforms.
You can use OptinMonster’s onsite retargeting to show repeat visitors popup campaigns for merchandise. You could even create your own affiliate program with the plugin AffiliateWP. This is a great way to reward your biggest fans for promoting your blog and merchandise.
For example, The Pioneer Woman sells blog branded merchandise online and in a brick and mortar store.
6. Market Your Services
You can use your blog to market your own business. 57% of marketers say they’ve gained customers specifically through blogging.
Your blog can share your industry or role specific knowledge. It’s like having a public portfolio that companies can discover at any time. You could even write blogs for other people or businesses!
Use WPForms to create a contact form that potential clients can use to inquire about hiring you. You can also create a booking form that collects payment.
In the example below, Watershed DNA subtly promotes their coaching services at the end of a blog post on a related topic.
7. Sell Sponsored Content
A favorite way to make money from blogging is to create sponsored content.
This means that brands pay you to write content related to their product, service, or brand. Sponsored content builds brand awareness for the sponsor, and can also contain affiliate links.
Sponsored content can include product reviews, roundups that include the sponsor, or simply articles related to the sponsor’s products or brand.
When you start publishing sponsored posts, you need to disclose which posts are sponsored. Learn how to automatically add a sponsored post prefix to your post titles in WordPress. You can also use AIOSEO to optimize your sponsored and affiliate links.
For example, I’m Not the Nanny shares a post sponsored by Xfinity. The post mentions Xfinity Rewards in the context of fun family activities, which the blog’s readers are already interested in.
8. Receive Donations
You can also simply ask your readers for donations to keep the blog running. This strategy is especially effective if you don’t run paid ads or sponsored content.
Perhaps you’ve chosen not to display advertising or sponsored content to create a better reading experience or more authentic content. Either way, you can invite readers to support your blog financially.
WP Simple Pay is an easy way to accept one-time and recurring payments on your WordPress website. You don’t need to fuss with coding or setting up an entire eCommerce system.
In the example below, The Writer’s Co-op invites listeners to donate to support production costs for their podcast.
9. Offer Memberships
Another way to make money from a blog is to offer memberships. You can sell ongoing access to premium content, workshops, courses, videos, and more.
MemberPress makes it easy to sell membership programs.
For example, Good Inside is a podcast and Instagram account with millions of followers. The Good Inside membership collects all of the founder’s workshops, videos, scripts, and other resources in one package.
10. Host a Virtual Conference
When you’ve built up a large audience around your blog content, you can bring them together for a conference.
A virtual conference can feature workshops, speakers, resource downloads, and more. Your blog’s conference can take place in real time, with or without recordings. You can also offer pre-recorded content that attendees can access at will. Learn more about how to host a virtual conference.
For example, Cindy Wang Brandt started a parenting blog and podcast. Then she hosted a virtual conference with a series of guest speakers discussing parenting topics.
11. Create a Podcast
A podcast can be very similar to a blog, just in audio form. If you prefer speaking to writing, a podcast could be a great format for you. There are many WordPress podcast plugins you can use to display your podcast on your WordPress website.
Just like a blog, you can share affiliate links or codes in your podcast episodes. You can also accept sponsorship or sell merchandise.
12. Start a YouTube Channel
Another format for blogging is video. People often use YouTube has a search engine to find tutorials, reviews, and other content. Creating YouTube videos can help you get your content in front of more people.
You can make money from YouTube by running ads, building your influence, or selling merchandise.
Check out these important video marketing statistics if you’re interested in creating videos.
How Many Views Do You Need to Make Money on WordPress?
People often wonder how much blog traffic you need to actually make money.
If your blog is primarily used to market other parts of your business, it only takes one person hiring you or buying a product for you to make money.
But if you want to make money from the content or the audience of your blog, you’ll need more visitors.
The number of visitors or pageviews needed to make it worth your while to create the content and run the blog, depends on the category of your blog.
For example, according to Google AdSense, a travel website with 50,000 pageviews per month can expect to make about $8,460 a year.
You can always supplement ad revenue with affiliate links, eBook sales, or email marketing for your digital or physical products.
Which Blog Site is Best for Earning Money?
We use and recommend WordPress as the best blog site for earning money.
WordPress is flexible and has countless plugins and themes to customize your website.
How Do I Start a Blog and Make Money on WordPress?
You can start a blog on WordPress in just 30 minutes. Read this great step by step guide for starting a WordPress blog on WPBeginner.
It’s easy to install WordPress once you have a domain name and web hosting. Bluehost even offers a free domain name with your web hosting package.
After you have WordPress installed, you can use some of our favorite plugins for making money with your blog:
- OptinMonster: the premium lead generation plugin for WordPress that helps you build your email list and sell more productsmember
- Easy Digital Downloads: the best plugin for selling digital products like eBooks, PDFs, and even software
- WP Simple Pay: the #1 Stripe payments plugin for WordPress lets you collect payment without setting up a shopping cart
- AIOSEO: the world’s best SEO plugin and toolkit helps Google and readers find your blog more easily
- MonsterInsights: the best WordPress analytics plugin lets you learn about your blog visitors so you can optimize your content and offers to make more money
There you have it, 12 unique ways to make money from your WordPress blog!
Even if you’re not quite ready to sell sponsored content or digital products from your blog, you can start collecting more email subscribers and leads with OptinMonster today.