“Jon, you’re unbelievable! You have your day job yet you’re still very diligent with your blog. Do you even earn from blogging?”
“YES!” that’s my resounding answer to a friend’s poking question.
I earn just a decent amount from my blog, but a big help as additional income from my regular job. I’ve already shared this to you in my previous posts, that when my father passed away more than a year ago, I hit rock bottom financially. From the staggering hospital bills to loans, huge portion of my salary goes to payments. Don’t worry, I am much better now, but I couldn’t deny the fact that in times when I needed extra income, my earnings from my blog was a huge help, and I am very thankful for that.
So if my readers ask me if they can also earn online, I always say that it is possible. It is definitely not easy, but through hardwork and patience, it can be done.
I started my travel blog about 3 years ago. But even before that, I was already looking for ways to earn online. Until I realized that since I love writing, I can create a blog not just a way for me to pursue what I love doing but also for a possibility of earning extra income. Since I also enjoy traveling and exploring, I decided to write about travel.
I just want to remind you that blogging is not easy. It’s time consuming, and it takes a lot of hardwork and persistence to be able to pull this off and reach a point that you’re starting to earn from it. You need to produce consistent quality content and you also have to learn about marketing and SEO.
I will write a separate post on how to build a successful blog, but right now let’s just focus on how to earn from it and other online opportunities.
My tips are mostly based on blogging, because this is the one that works for me. There are a lot of opportunities to earn online but if you’re also interested on how to earn through your blog, this one is for you.
1. Sponsored Posts and Content
I just traveled and wrote consistently on the first few months of my blog. Then after one year, I received an email from a travel company offering me what they call a sponsored post. I was stunned and it was new to me back then. They proposed that I write a blog post about a certain travel experience of mine then put a link going to their website. You know how much is it? 100 USD or a whopping 5,000 pesos just for one post!
This is currently the biggest chunk of my online earnings. After receiving that offer, I then received more emails in the coming months. The earnings here is good but it’s not that stable. There are times that I have a lot of writing gigs and offers for one month, then nothing on the next month. But this is really helpful especially with paying my bills and all.
You don’t need to accept all proposals and emails, you still need to check if the offer fits your niche and readers.
You’re probably asking what it takes for your blog to be at this point, where companies and other sponsors come and email you? Well, it’s not that easy. This takes a lot of blood and sweat! Your blog has to be like an authority-ish of your niche before companies notice you and finds you worthy to partner with.
There are a lot of Ad companies for blogs and websites. The most popular is Google Adsense. It was last year when I finally decided to put Google Adsense on my blog. I am not earning that much from this as of the moment because for you to be able to earn big from ads, you need to have unbelievably HUGE traffic.
For Google Adsense, you need to have USD 100 earnings from your account to be able to withdraw it, and I’ve already reached that threshold twice. Well, earning from Google adsense is better that have nothing at all.
3. Affiliate Marketing
This might sound new to you. But for bloggers this is also one of the effective ways to earn online. There are companies who are opening their doors to affiliates to boost their sales. So these affiliates are like the promoters of that certain company or service. By having a specialized link, bloggers can just put that link on their blog, and once a reader clicks on it and they purchase something, the affiliate earns a commission!
Being a travel blogger, I do affiliate marketing for some travel companies. One of them is Agoda, a top hotel booking site. I promote Agoda on my blog when I mention hotels and accommodation, then when a reader clicks my link and goes direcly to Agoda site and they booked a hotel there, I get a commission. That’s how affiliate marketing works!
4. Social Media Partnerships
Writing on your blog is not enough to be a successful blogger, you need to capitalize the power of Social Media. Get social! Create your Facebook Page to interact with your fans, and have an Instagram or Twitter accounts to connect with them.
As for me, I was able to build a social media following after three years of blogging. This following and influence can be a source of additional income when digital companies tap you for their campaigns. Just a few months ago, a Digital agency tapped me to post on my Instagram to promote an online hotel booking site. The fee was enough to cover my monthly budget for my transportation and food for my work! Not bad for a single Instagram post right? So it is important that you grow your Social Media reach to get more of these opportunities.
5. Press Trips and Other Partnerships
One of the best things about being a travel blogger, and you already have established yourself as an authority to your niche is the invites for Press trips, or what they also call Fam Trips or Familiarization trips.
This is when Tourism Office of the government or other private companies invite bloggers, journalists and influencers to take part of an all-expense paid trip in exchange of blog post and social media promotions.
Most of my Fam trips are sponsored by the Tourism Promotions Board of DOT! I am not paid for these trips but the experience to travel around the Philippines for free plus the awesome hotels that I am able to experience are priceless. And it also feels good to promote your own country’s Tourism industry, right?
The good thing is there are private travel companies and even resort and hotel owners who are inviting travel bloggers to their place and some of them are paying influencers and bloggers!
Other Ways to Earn Online aside from Blogging
6. Freelance Writing
I’ve tried this before, you know writing for other sites as a sideline job. These works are mostly from my connections from the blogging industry. But I wasn’t able to cope with it that long, because I have a regular job and I am also focused that time of growing my travel blog, so I didn’t have time for more freelance writing gigs for other sites.
Now, there are a lot of freelance writing sites that you can check and apply for some projects. Take note that these sites have a strict process in accepting writers, so you have to step up your grammar and writing skills before applying.
7. Freelance Jobs
There are a lot of companies now that look for talents all over the world for a certain job or for long-time projects. Sites like Upwork is popular nowadays for people who have certain skills for freelance work. Writers, Programmers and Web developers are all there at Upwork. Even simple jobs like being a transcriptionist or a virtual assistant are top jobs at Upwork. So if you have certain skill that you know can give value to some companies and you want to try freelancing and work from home, check out Upwork.
8. Sell Online
There are a lot of platforms now to sell your own products online aside from Ebay. There are more successful online sellers who are just selling using their Facebook account or Facebook Page. It’s true that it takes a lot of patience to be able to find your consistent buyers, but hey If you have a quality product that you know is helpful and will give value to people. Just continue and don’t give up!
I know that there are still a lot of ways to earn online, but these are just my personal recommendations based on my own experience. I hope this helps especially for those who are planning to launch their own blog.
Do you know more online opportunities? Share them on the comment section below!