You've been blogging for quite a while now, and you've amassed quite an online following. So you think you finally may be able to start making some money out of this endeavor (as long as you have the e-commerce capability to accept credit cards online).
But not with advertising.
Maybe you don't like the convoluted, distracting ads that appear on other sites or blogs. Or perhaps you just don't want to commercialize your blog in that manner. Whatever the reason for your disdain for advertising, take heart - there are ways of generating revenues from your blog that do not involve displaying those pesky ads. Here are nine of them.Affiliate marketing programs
This involves finding products or services in your area of expertise and promoting them. You don't have to think of it as shameless shilling; just find things you like, write about how great they are, and provide a link so consumers can buy them if they want. There are several companies with which you can partner to find services/products you can write about - and you'll get a percentage of each sale of the product.
If you are knowledgeable in your field, people will likely want your input about a specific problem. Since your blog probably only deals with general information, there's no issue with charging for your expertise on a one-on-one basis. After all, if you tried to help every single person who had a problem for free, you'd never have time to blog or do anything else.
Think of this as a subscription service. Basically, blog readers will pay you a regular membership fee for access to "premium" or more specific content. The good news: this can turn into a significant revenue stream. The bad news is: means you have to provide additional content on an ongoing basis.
Related search results
Some search engines will allow you to display certain search terms that are similar to the content on your blog. If a blog reader clicks on one of these terms, they are taken to the search engine - and you get money if they also click on that site's sponsored results.
Take your previous content and package it for sale to newcomers to your blog. Group your previous posts into an e-book. Use PowerPoint and similar software to make a webinar about a popular topic. Compile data on relevant subject matter and issue a comprehensive report. Or assemble a "how-to" type course that can be viewed on a person's computer. All of these digital products can be sold to interested parties.
Similarly, you can take your archived posts and information and turn them into books or DVDs. Or you can even hawk T-shirts or other branded merchandise promoting your blog. There are plenty of companies that will turn your blog into (or connect your blog with) an e-commerce site where you can sell whatever you like to your followers and readers.
Classified ad hosting
If lots of people visit your blog, you might be able to bring them together to help each other out. So design a job board, virtual flea market, or even an online personal ad page that allows you to charge people to display their content. It's not that hard to do - and it's another service that you'll be providing to people who share your interests.
If you're a recognized expert in your subject, there may be opportunities to leverage that knowledge without involving a computer. Lots of bloggers are paid for consulting jobs, speaking engagements, or workshop participation in areas where they are proficient. Just do a little research and find out what groups, companies, or individuals might benefit from your skill set.
This could be the "holy grail" for bloggers: getting your blog displayed on a larger site with more viewers. It's a bit like a TV show on a local cable channel getting picked up by a broadcast network. Just make sure that the syndication agreement you sign is favorable to your wallet and your copyrights.
Chris Martin is a freelance writer who focused on a wide variety of topics such as business tips, gaining blog readers, and why it's a good idea for businesses to accept credit cards online.
Social networking icons by komodomedia.com.
Site copyright © 2000-2011 by Shel Horowitz