You went through the hassle of purchasing a domain name, setting it up with a decent hosting company, and now you have put countless hours into your blog…
But there’s a problem: You enjoy blogging, but your blog is not profitable.
Let’s explore the many reasons why your blog – whether amazing or lacking – is currently not enough to help pay your bills. We’ll also go through potential fixes to help you make money blogging as soon as possible.
Your Passion Does Not Yield Results
It’s heartbreaking to realize that your passion simply isn’t profitable enough. After all, we’d all like to make money writing about our most passionate subjects. And while most industries can be leveraged for money, some angles are simply too tricky or obscure to bother with.
Let’s say that you’re a sucker for cat clothes and enjoy writing / posting images of kitties sporting the latest fashion. If this isn’t making you money, consider writing about other things that cat lovers naturally like or need.
The above example would open the door to affiliate products and allow you to write (and sell) various guides in relation to pet care, health, and related topics for cat owners.
Your Focus is Too Broad
Having a broad blog doesn’t mean it will automatically fail. In fact, there are many entertainment websites that have really profited from diverse Listicles and other content types.
However, keeping things broad usually means you won’t get to cover many topics in detail — unless you can afford several paid contractors to maintain the website.
Narrowing down your focus allows you to tackle everything there is to know about a particular subject, which helps turn you into an authority in that space. This way, when you finally try to sell something, people are far more likely to place their trust in you.
There is No Call to Action
We’re all guilty of not wanting to come on too strong, so we often write articles with no end-goal in mind. We simply assume that readers will naturally flock to a desired action merely by getting acquainted with the author over time.
Sadly, you need to be a tad more aggressive to make money blogging.
Readers may come to like you, but that doesn’t mean they’d buy anything if your approach is too passive.
Are you asking them to sign up to your mailing list in the middle / end of your articles?
Are you naturally linking to your Resources page, where you happen to sell various products?
Are you publishing articles comparing various products/services and inserting your own offerings within it?
If you answered No to all of the above, it’s time to change that to a resounding Yes instead. While you don’t want to be too aggressive, you shouldn’t expect people to magically purchase from you without a firm call to action.
You’re Selling Low-level Items
Let’s say you run a music blog and regularly post affiliate links to a particular music service or directly to songs from artists. You get a decent amount of sales, but they’re simply not enough to warrant your time and effort…
Ask yourself whether the price of these products are too low, then replace them with high-ticket items if necessary.
What if you can’t find more expensive items to sell? Well, this is where you must get a bit more creative to make your blog profitable, for example:
Regarding the above example, consider selling expensive music equipment for listeners and creators alike.
Write a course and sell it to music creators, which allows you to set your own price and even lower it/raise it depending on results.
All in all, there’s almost always something you can change or tweak about every current strategy if you analyze it hard enough.
Your UI or Formatting is Outdated
Let’s say that your blog already has various important things in place (including a strong call to action, a potentially profitable niche, and more). If your blog is an unattractive mess to look at, however, it may keep people from taking you seriously.
Imagine walking into a dirty, messy house as someone who’s always been into cleanliness. Would you stick around for very long? We all know the answer to that.
Closely analyze your blog’s user interface (UI) and overall aesthetics:
- Ensure there aren’t too many flashy ads on the sidebar
- Keep things relatively clean and not overwhelming
- Don’t use walls of text (this is very unattractive)
- Make your font bigger if you ever find yourself squinting your eyes
- Give your blog a makeover with a modern theme (anything that doesn’t scream 2001-2009)
You May Need to Invest
It’s pretty normal to avoid investing as a blogger, especially when your blog isn’t profitable.
For better or worse, sometimes you must invest to get out of that hole and help your blog make money. Consider the following investments if necessary:
- Buy a versatile, feature-rich theme
- Buy a plugin that can help make better sales (such as an Amazon affiliate plugin)
- Invest in Google ads or any other service that can reach your audience
- Invest in an editor if you feel that your written content needs substantial work (it’s okay to be informal and conversational these days, but make sure your content is legible)
Start with a small blog investment simply to learn the art and science of it all, then tweak your financial planning accordingly.
You’re Not Building a Relationship
This is probably the most important possibility as to why your blog is not making money.
Have you ever wondered why so many companies have social media accounts? It’s not to sell products, but rather to build relationships.
From small businesses to large corporations, it’s all about establishing a sense of friendship and being very, very relatable to their audience. This, in turn, leads to more sales in the long run.
- Are you using your name when blogging?
- Are you displaying your face as the author avatar?
- Are you building a mailing list to continue communication?
- Do you encourage readers to reach you directly should they have any questions?
- Are your articles informal, friendly, and slightly humorous?
- Are you telling relatable stories in your blog posts when appropriate?
- Are you giving away free things, focusing on value above raw sales?
The answer to all of the above should be YES, OF COURSE. Otherwise, it’s time to reassess your blogging strategy.
Other Reasons Your Blog is Not Yet Profitable
You’re too desperate: This leads to inconsistent schedules, coming on too strong, and giving off a negative or rookie vibe.
You may need another traffic source: You may have a solid blogging strategy, but the traffic is simply lacking. I personally suggest building a YouTube or Instagram channel along with your blog, as either platform can generally cover 99.9% of all niches under the sun. Most importantly, take these platforms seriously and don’t treat them as a side project.
You’re not measuring results: Looking at your blogging analytics, you’ll realize most of the traffic is probably coming from a handful of articles (as opposed to coming from every article you’ve published). It’s important to replicate your success by exploring topics which are closely-related to those winning articles.
The key, above all else, is to not give up prematurely out of discouragement or desperation.
There are tons of reasons why your blog is not paying the bills, but you also have the advantage of tweaking and implementing different strategies until something eventually clicks.