There are plenty of ways you can make money from your website. Some are easier than others.
You can pick one as your business model or you can cobble them all together. It’s your website and you can choose the methods that suit you best.
1. Banner Ads
While this option is used less these days, it can still be a viable option. On your site you have plenty of space to place ads. Banner ads can be placed in your side bar, above your header or in your content.
Sizes vary from 150×150 squares to skyscrapers and long horizontal banners. You can have a very simple one with an image and text overlay (see my sidebar) or flashy moving banners, most often used in affiliate marketing and display ads.
What you can earn from banner ads depends on your site. The more visitors and the more engagement, the more money you can ask for. You decide the price that you feel is fair. When setting a price, keep in mind that most advertisers are used to negotiating ad rates, so plan accordingly and leave some room to negotiate.
2. Display Ads
Like banner ads, you can put display ads in your sidebar, in your content and above your header. These ads are most commonly sourced from Google Ads or networks like MediaVine.
If you are just starting out and don’t have a lot of visitors yet, it will take a very long time before you actually start making some money from the display ads. MediaVine even has a minimum required monthly visits before you can use their display ads.
You often will get paid a very small amount per click (CPC) or a small amount per 1,000 impressions (CPM)
3. Sponsored (Social) Post
The media landscape is changing rapidly. In order to reach a targeted audience, advertisers need to start moving away from traditional media and find blogs and social channels that have very targeted audiences to promote their message.
Advertisers can ask you to write a blog post for your site, sometimes they even write the post for you and pay you to publish it. The same goes for posts on your social media channels. It’s not uncommon to post for a certain amount of time about a brand or to create a package with a blog and social posts.
Like with banner ads, you decide what you think is fair. Don’t start too low, it’s better to aim a little higher than you might feel comfortable with, because advertisers will rarely pay the quoted price. They may even approach you with a figure in mind and ask what you can do for that price.
One word of advice. If they give you content, make sure you read it and check if it will fit your readers. Adjust if necessary. You know your audience, they don’t. If they don’t agree to you making some changes, then don’t post it. Don’t squander your credibility and trust with your readers for a few bucks.
4. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing can get very lucrative, very fast. If you promote the right products then you don’t need a huge audience to really start making money. This in contrast to the ad opportunities and the sponsored posts.
You want to look for either a high ticket program with a high commission percentage or something with a forgettable price. Generally speaking, out of a 1,000 visitors if you only convert 1 person you could stand to make a lot more on a high ticket offer than 50% conversion on a low priced offer with a low commission.
In the marketing world they even say it’s easier to sell something expensive, than something cheap. But it still takes skill. It could be easier for you to find a product(range) on Amazon around $20, a more or less forgettable price and get more conversions, than actually selling something of $1,000 and up.
The absolute best thing you can promote however is a membership of some kind. You promote it, convert once and reap the commissions on a monthly basis as long as your referral is using the service/coaching/membership.
Any one can become an affiliate marketer, all you need is a website and a little bit of training. If you really want to be an affiliate marketer I highly recommend you check out Wealthy Affiliate. They will educate you and offer you a place to build your affiliate website. You can try it out for free and start building your site today.
5. Drop Shipping
Tim Ferris first introduced me to the idea of drop shipping when I read the 4-hour work week in 2010. It really seemed like the best way to make some passive income if you can find the right product.
What you see most of the time is that marketers get products from AliExpress for $1 and sell it to their audience for $15 excluding shipping. Then they have the product send by AliExpress to their customer. If you do it right, this can give a very nice profit margin.
I have seen case studies where people are selling $20,000 worth of product per month. You obviously have to take into account that that amount is gross profit, but even if it only leaves $5,000 a month after all costs have been deducted, it’s nothing to sneeze at.
You can set up your own e-commerce site with WordPress and a plugin called WooCommerce for free. Wealthy Affiliate even has training on how to do it and a few live webinars with Jay about drop shipping and e-commerce.
Want to learn more about drop shipping and e-commerce options, check out Wealthy Affiliate.
6. Selling your own products
This can be very involved. Because you either have to create a product or have a product in stock that you sell. But the options are legion. You can sell your hand crafted items, an e-book, worksheets, courses, masterminds. It doesn’t have to be a physical product as you see. It can be digital as well.
The great thing about digital products is, is that it requires some effort up front to create it (read my article about front-loading the work here) but it can then make you money in perpetuity. Even when you sleep or are on holiday. How awesome is that?
You can build your own site, set up the e-commerce part of it or you can use a smart shopping cart with a sales page built in to set up your cart in less than 15 minutes. Going the WordPress route will take a little longer, but it’s very useful to have a site in the long run. But using a tool like SamCart can get you up and running quickly, before you talk yourself out of it. (Psst, you can try SamCart for free for 14-days)
7. Selling your services
By far the easiest thing to do is to sell your services. Use your site to show your expertise and offer yourself as a VA, social media manager, cleaner, writer, photographer. Basically anything you can do as a freelancer you can sell from your website.
There are some awesome tools so people can schedule their time with you. My favorite is Calendly. It even takes payments via Paypal and Stripe. But this does mean that you need to build out your site and show some expertise too. To get started quicker you can also use SamCart. Write an awesome one page sales funnel and sell your time/services via their cart system.
8. Coaching and Consulting
If you are an expert already, you can and in my opinion should totally offer coaching or consulting. If you are not an expert yet, you will soon become one if you start plugging away at your niche site. (the very best side job there is)
To offer your coaching or consulting they easiest way it to build a site so people can find you and use that together with either Calendly or Samcart, as I mentioned in the part about selling your services.
Like I said in the beginning, you can pick any combination of ways to monetize your site. But one thing is for certain. Your site and what you offer for sale will only build upon each other.
Let me know in the comments below, which way of monetizing a site appeals to you most? Which way(s) will you be using?