There are so many ways out there to monetize a website these days. How can you ever figure out what the best route to take is? That’s what we need to talk about. I want to explain to you 3 of the best ways to monetize a website.
You may already have a website in place, which is awesome if that’s the case, and if not then you may want to read my article on how to properly build a successful website for free before we dive too deep here. It’s super simple to get started and once you do you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.
Let’s start with the basics.
Build Some Authority First
When I first broke into the internet marketing game I was under the impression that I was going to sit down at my computer, crank out some words on the page and everyone would read it, buy stuff, and I’d make a ton of money.
That, unfortunately, is not the case. I have always said, “If getting rich was easy, everyone would do it.” Since everyone is definitely not rich, I’m telling you it’s not easy.
So, when you first start your website you will not make money. That’s almost a guarantee. Well… let me rephrase. You will not make any substantial money when you first start. My first couple months I really only saw a few bucks trickle in from various sources, but not anywhere close to enough to sustain my day to day lifestyle.
With that being said, understand the importance of building your site out and creating a significant amount of content before you expect to see results. Building a website works like anything else, if you want to make money you have to put in time and effort.
If you put in the appropriate amount of time and effort you will be rewarded tenfold.
Building a website is also not a get rich quick scheme. There are many scams out there like the business model I wrote about here that will tell you the only way to make real money is by buying a product and then scamming others into buying that same product.
Doesn’t this seem a bit silly? Eventually you just go round and round and run out of people on the planet to buy your product.
Now that you understand that this will take time, I will explain the 3 major ways authority sites are making money on the internet. You probably can guess them for yourself, but if you are new to the internet marketing world then maybe you don’t know this just yet.
You see ads everywhere and you might not even know it. However, most are pretty blatant I will admit. If you clicked on a photo recently, it was probably an advertisement. If you clicked on any sponsored link, that is most definitely an advertisement. If it was the top Google search result, it was likely an ad from that site. If you have watched any videos online lately, the chances are there was an ad included in the video.
The fact of the matter is, ads are becoming more popular every day. You can’t even stream music these days without ads popping up unless you pay monthly fees. It is quite frustrating, but these sites are making money from it.
Let’s talk about how it works and a couple different avenues to get ad revenue from your website.
Google Adsense: Google Adsense is probably the most common outlet for ads on the internet. Any site you click on probably has Adsense embedded somewhere in their site. This can be in the form of banners within content or integrated in a sidebar, header, or footer.
Google Adsense may be one of the most popular ad generators due to the fact that they have the ability to collect cookies from a vast majority of users.
When Google understands what users are interested in it sets them up to better advertise and conjure conversions. Google’s algorithms understand what you want to purchase based on your searches, site visits, etc.
They say that you will research something 7 times on average before deciding to purchase. If you just so happen to see an Adsense ad on a site and this is your 7th time seeing the product, maybe a click happens.
This is how you can generate income from Adsense. Users frequent your site, and let’s face it, you know you’ve clicked on a few ads and even purchased things after clicking. This is important because every single time you click on an ad, a website is making money.
You leverage the same principles that the other authority sites do and advertisement becomes your bread and butter.
Not all advertising is based on cookies that are collected from a user. Sometimes you will want to create ads that revolve around what you are writing about on your website.
If you head over to incitefitness.org and check out my blog, you will see that I have some ads that are very specifically tailored to those that would be reading that blog.
This is effective because people that tend to be looking at a particular post related to a niche are more likely to purchase items or be interested in ads pertaining to that niche.
A downfall of Adsense is the fact that many people will see something they searched out of random like the Starbuck’s Unicorn Frappuccino. They may hate that drink but searched it because they wanted to justify their hatred for the product.
Immediately you will see ads through Adsense that have saved this search record. They begin to advertise fruity, sugary, coffee drinks to you and it’s somewhat annoying. Especially when you are visiting a site founded around building an online income.
If you use targeted advertising like they offer at Rakuten Network or other affiliate advertising sites you can see much more profitable results. Since I also run a health and fitness website it is important for me to advertise items and brands that my readers can believe in.
I target my advertising based on quality products or services that align with the values that I instill through the content I build on my sites. This converts more frequently than your average Adsense ad, and you tend to earn more through commissions.
This brings me to the second huge monetization technique when it comes to websites:
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is similar to advertisement but also very different. That seems counterintuitive I understand but it’s really the only way to accurately describe what is happening with affiliate marketing.
With affiliate marketing you essentially advertise a product, if someone purchases that product or you refer someone to a particular website you receive commissions from whatever they purchase. Refer to my article on how to make money affiliate marketing for more specific information.
Many sites incorporate affiliate marketing because it is slightly more profitable than advertisement (unless you are driving a very expensive, tailored advertisement campaign). Affiliate marketing actually allows you to become a salesman rather than just relying on others to sell product.
You can sell other peoples products and operate based on the commission you receive. There is a number of quality affiliate programs out there which I discuss in great detail here and here.
Perhaps one of the most lucrative setups is Amazon’s affiliate program. Although the commissions are limited, you receive commission off of anything purchased even if it is not the item you’ve linked to.
For example, my websites have seen revenue when people purchase RV Toilet Paper of all things when I am actually advertising workout gear. Since someone clicked my link I receive the commission because I funneled them into the Amazon site in the first place.
This is a very lucrative business model and a large majority of sites at least have Amazon Affiliate ID’s so that when they talk about products they can link to them and receive commission.
Even on products I truly love, I may as well include my affiliate link rather than making nothing from the sale.
The selling of products you create is the final of the three key ways to monetize your site.
3. Sell Your Own Products
There are many types of products to be sold in modern times. You can chase after the classic build your own product and sell that to those who read through your website and believe in you…or you can sell your own digital product which is what many on the internet are doing right now.
Trends are interesting, and this one is huge. You have self proclaimed millionaires and gurus that decide that they want to help everyone “get rich today for a one time investment of $3,000” and they actually convince people to fall for that. I’ve been a victim of these scam artists myself so trust me. (Haven’t blown money on them but have definitely clicked through their links and spent time listening to them).
Marketing your own skills and abilities is probably one of the least taken advantage of opportunities. If you have a skill or an understanding of something and can teach that to other people, it’s very likely that you can monetize your website through instruction.
Educating others with digital content is probably the most profitable of the three ways to monetize your site. This is because of the low overhead cost, minimal updating requirement, and the fact that once you build it you don’t have to produce more than one really.
Digital content doesn’t have the price tag that 5 million Toys R Us toys have to produce. You can create quality digital content on a very limited budget and sell it to your readers at a reasonable price.
People tend to pay large quantities to learn new skills that will help drive them towards success. If you have a unique outlook it is imperative that you share this via digital content with your readers because then you will have the opportunity to generate sales in the future with digital content.
If you are not a digital content creator yourself you can start your own clothing brand or create a physical product that you can then distribute. If you have a large traffic base initially then conversions to sales will be easy and monetization of your site will come with little to no effort just as it has with advertising and affiliate marketing.
While selling a product that you have personally created can have some heavy up front costs associated with it, you can definitely see a much more rewarding result from monetizing your own products via your websites.
If you have any questions about my monetization methods, how I generate revenue via this website and the aforementioned site incitefitness.org please drop me a comment below and let’s chat!
As always, thanks for reading.