This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please read my disclosure for more details(Last Updated On: November 27, 2018)
I posted a post yesterday about the 10 Lessons I Learned In My First 6 Months Blogging. I was asked a few times how I made my first $1,000 blogging. This post outlines exactly what I did to earn my first $1,000 blogging (and exactly how long it took!). I’m hoping this post inspires some of you to start a blog today!
My First $1,000 Blogging
My first $1,000 was made by 20% ads (~$200) and then 80% affiliate marketing (~$800). It took me about 6 months to make this money. Well, to be fair, my blog launched on March 23, 2018 and I earned $1,000 by mid-August. I guess that brings the figure closer to 5 months!
I’m still using Google Adsense for my ads and I promote the following affiliate products/programs:
- ShareASale: It’s my favourite affiliate network. The network includes Tailwind, my Pinterest scheduler.
- Amazon: Every time I recommend some household products, I go to Amazon!
- Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: This course taught me everything I know about affiliate marketing. I’ve written a full review here.
- Bluehost: This is the host I am using for my blog and I’m super happy with it. I wrote a post about how to start a blog and some people have followed my advice and started a blog of their own. I am so happy that I’m helping someone out!!! Thank you for the support 🙂
- Pinteresting Strategies: This ebook has been great in helping me build up my Pinterest profile through manual pinning.
The Exact Steps I Took To Earn My First $1,000 Blogging
- I picked a blog niche I loved and chose a blog name that sticks.
- I registered for hosting, no free hosts!
- I designed my blog using the Genesis framework and a cute minimalist theme I found.
- I enrolled in several blogging courses and started networking with other bloggers immediately.
- I started using Pinterest to gain traffic (this ebook helped me the most).
- I had a blog post go viral which brought me more readers than I could ever imagine.
- I started an email list and actually emailing my list. That took me a few months! I’m still working on it.
- I made my first affiliate sale ever by posting my third month income report where I recommended Carly’s ebook to get traffic from manually pinning on Pinterest. I guess a lot of my readers were in the same shoes as me!
- I took the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course and implemented all the strategies I learned right away (read my review here).
- I emailed my list whenever I found awesome products that could solve their problems.
- I kept writing blog posts every month. I wrote about 10 posts per month, on average.
- I kept making new pins for each of my blog posts and kept scheduling them to Pinterest using Tailwind.
- I used Google Analytics to keep track of which posts are the most popular. I promoted these posts more and embedded more affiliate marketing tactics in the posts so that they are monetised as many as possible. I also wrote more content related to my most popular posts.
- I was patient and kept track of my progress every month through my monthly income reports!
What I Learned About Making Money Blogging
1. You’re not going to get rich from ad income
Unless you get hundreds of thousands of page views per month, ad income alone isn’t going to make you rich. I only earn a measly $50 per month from my ads because I’m still on Google Adsense network.
2. Affiliate marketing is way more lucrative than ad income
A few months into my blogging journey I realised that I wasn’t going to get rich from ads. For instance, I promote Bluehost which is the host that I’m currently using. I have absolutely no issues with them and it’s the most affordable host for new bloggers like myself! For every person that signs up with Bluehost through my link, I earn $80. That is more than what I earn in an entire month through ads alone!
Once I learned this, I stopped focusing as much on getting traffic. Instead, I tried my best to attract more readers in my target audience and then solve a problem that they had. I spent more time writing helpful posts promoting products that I actually love.
3. Getting sponsored posts is hard when you’re a new blogger
I haven’t managed to land a sponsored post. It is a huge bummer. That’s mainly because my traffic and follower numbers are so low. A lot of companies want to see huge follower numbers, especially on Instagram, which I don’t even have.
Secondly, I am a Canadian located in Switzerland and a lot of sponsored posts are for Americans only. I was surprised to read an email from Carly from Mommy On Purpose where she talked about how difficult it was for her to get a sponsored post as a Canadian, even though she gets hundreds of page views to her blog every month!
The moral of the story is, I have given up on sponsored posts as a revenue stream.
4. Selling services and products is where the real money is at
After reading hundreds of income reports and this study (you should seriously read this post, it’s awesome), I’ve learned that the real way to make money blogging is by selling ebooks or courses. The reason being? You own the content and you’re keeping the highest share of the sale! Even if you have to pay out affiliates at a 40% commission rate, you’re still pocketing the other 60%!
I am still working on my first ebook and it’s taken me literally months. I hate that I am working at the pace of a turtle.
5. It’s never too late to start a blog
I started this blog in March 2018 and I thought that blogging was already dead. On days when I was totally burnt out, I felt that as if it was too late to make money blogging. Other bloggers who have been doing it for years have already captured the market.
This is simply not true! The fact that I was able to make over $1,000 from my blog within 6 months just shows that the sky is the limit!
I hope you enjoyed this short and sweet post. It was mainly written to address the question that I kept getting over and over again, “How did you make your first $1,000 blogging?”
Ready to start a blog? Read my guide on how to start a blog today!
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