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Full-time Blogging: How to Make Money

Easy Ways to Drive Traffic and Earn Money from a Blog  

The prospect of working at home is an attractive one for many Americans, but most are unaware that they could possibly do so by writing about the things they know and love the most. Writing a weblog or a "blog" is one of the most popular ways to make money full-time while working from home. A good blog can easily become a money-making machine with the simple use of two components: traffic and advertising.

Driving Traffic to a Blog

The most successful full-time blog writers are those who have been able to attract large numbers of readers to their articles. The best way to drive traffic to any blog is to draw in readers from search engines. This is done by guaranteeing that the blog's articles are listed on the front page when search results are returned by websites such as Google or Yahoo. This practice is called "Search Engine Optimization" and is considered an art by the Internet's most successful Internet writers. It is typically achieved by using commonly-searched keywords in the titles and text of blog articles.
In addition to writing keyword-rich content, successful bloggers:
  • Use websites like Digg, Reddit, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Facebook, and MySpace to tell others about interesting new posts.
  • Generate additional traffic by trading reciprocal links with more established writers and by joining banner exchange programs.
  • Promote off-line by wearing a tee-shirt with the blog's web address on it or by displaying a bumper sticker with the blog's URL.
  • Expand their promotion efforts by offering the tee-shirts and bumper stickers to loyal readers at a good price.
  • Add a "tell-a-friend" button to the front page that can be used by visitors to send automatic emails to their friends about articles.
  • Display links to their articles in their e-mail signatures, in online forums, and in chat rooms.
It is equally important that bloggers entice readers to return. Blogs that appear to be "abandoned" are least likely to attract repeat readers so, content must be updated regularly. If it becomes necessary to take a break from writing, it is best to compose a number of general posts and use the blogging program's auto-post option to update the content.

How Bloggers Make Money from Advertising

The most common way to make money from a blog is to place pay-per-click advertising on the front page near the main content. Google Adsense and Amazon.com are popular sources for click ads. They pay the blog owner a small commission every time an advertisement is clicked by a reader. Blog writers with high-traffic websites are able to sell advertising space directly to businesses without using Google or Amazon as third parties.
Money can also be earned by:
  • Writing paid reviews for products or services that may appeal to readers.
  • Selling text links in articles. (Text links route readers to websites where goods and services are sold).
  • Featuring an Indeed.com career search tool.
  • Placing a PayPal button on the blog's home page which can be used by readers to make donations to the blog.

Of course, it will take time to build a following of loyal readers. However, as traffic increases, revenues will follow suit. Stay dedicated to the challenge of producing quality web content, and remember that persistence pays.
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