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How To Monetize A Blog Or Forum

Copyright (c) 2008-2022

Blogs and forums are ideal "traffic magnets" for a website. Your website's visitors know that they are frequently updated, and that they are interactive, so they keep returning to "join the conversation."

Search engines know that they are frequently updated, so search engine spiders frequent return to re-index their content. Properly configured blogs will "ping" the search engines and directories each time that they are posted to, constantly calling the search engine spiders back.

Since blogs and forums even come pre-installed in C-panel on many hosting accounts, getting a website going can be as simple as registering a domain name, hosting it at a host that offers C-panel, and with just a few clicks of a button, selecting the blogging or forum platform that you want to use. You can even customize the look and feel of that blog or forum later if you want to. That way, you can literally have a website up and running in UNDER an hour. All that you need to do is make the blog or forum your homepage, and your site is literally ready for the world!

The big question has always been, how do you then earn revenue from that blog or forum. Here are some options that I use and recommend:

1) Use your blog or forum to build a niche mailing list that you then market to via email. Simply post a subscription form right into the html code of the blog or forum that invites your visitors to join your mailing list. If they enjoy the content on your blog or forum, many visitors will subscribe. You'll build a mailing list fairly effortless over time.

If you're really lazy, that mailing list subscription can be to an "evergreen" newsletter. That is, you can write, or have written, a series of email messages that each new subscriber gets in sequence when they sign up. Put together 52 issues that are scheduled to go out once a week, or 24 issues that are set to go out every 2 weeks, and you have a newsletter that essentially "runs itself" for a year.

Each issue of your newsletter could contain: a simple article, an editorial, and a product recommendation. It doesn't have to be any more difficult than that.

I write each issue of my newsletter fresh, but do know people who use the "evergreen model." They simple set the autoresponder sequence to start over again when the last issue is reached, then they periodically add new issues to the series or revise outdated issues.

If you'd like to see how I've integrated a subscribe box right into my blog, you can check it out at: http://WillieCrawford.com/blog/

With a newsletter, the most often missed point is that you DO need to sell your subscribers on signing up. You do need to give them a compelling reason, assure them that you'll protect their data, and instruct them on exactly how to signup.

2) Use your blog or forum to sell affiliate products. This can be as simple as putting graphics and product recommendations right into your menu bar. I do that on my blog at the url above.

On my blog, I now sell affiliate products that pay me 50 to 100% commission, and that pay me instantly. If you check out my blog at the url above, you'll notice an animated 150 x 600 banner that advertises several products. When a website visitor clicks on that banner and buys one of those products I earn 100% commission, and it's instantly deposited directly to my Paypal account. Not only do I earn a steady stream of commissions from my blogs and forums, but I don't have to wait on slow-paying affiliate programs.

The banner on my blog is called "Niche Widget" and is was added to my blog simply by copying and pasting a tiny bit of code into the webpage. It will work on ANY blog, forum, or webpage, even on your Faceback or YouTube (or other social networking websites) webpages. In fact, adding the Niche Widget to sites like Facebook or YouTube is as simple as clicking on the Widget where it says "Grab This Widget." This prompts you to log into any of over a dozen social networking sites and AUTOMATICALLY add the widget to your profile. However, that is primarily designed to send your widget viral, and have lots of others passing along YOUR affiliate link. To get paid you need to click on the link that says "Make Money With It!"

What could be easier?

With Niche widget you can choose from a variety of niches ranging from pets, to relationships, to marketing, to food, or health, and the widget will display ads paying you from 50 - 100% on products related to that niche. The database has over 2000 different digital product in it.

To get the Niche Widget absolutely free, you just visit http://Niche-Widgets.com and sign up. There are premium accounts, but you can go with the free account if desired. The difference is that premium accounts pay higher commissions and pay you a percentage of sales on free accounts when others sign up through you.

With the premium account, when someone who signs up through you earns 50% commission, you earn 25% commission, and the owner on Niche Widgets earns the other 25%. I really like the system. It was earning me MORE than Google AdSense the very first day that I installed it.

3) Google AdSense or other pay per click programs. You register for one of these accounts, insert the code into your page, and then you basically "sell your targeted traffic."

The AdSense code displays related ads on your blog or forum, and then when someone clicks on an ad, that advertise pays Google for the traffic, and Google pays you an undisclosed percentage of that advertiser's payment (for each click generated). This was at one time my favorite revenue model because it required very little work. You simply insert the code into your webpages, blogs, forums, etc., and then someone else finds the advertises who pay you. However, after only a little testing, and noticing a higher revenue stream, I AM replacing AdSense on most of my site with Niche Widget. You can get that again at: http://Niche-Widgets.com

4) Your own products. If you have your own products, you can market those directly from your blog or forum just as you do affiliate products. For example, I have both a blog and a forum on my soul food recipes site. On both the blog and the forum, I run an ad for a cookbook that I wrote and sell copies of EVERYDAY.

Since I know that many of my repeat visitors already own my cookbook, I also use to run Google AdSense ads, but now use the Niche Widget.

The Niche Widget displays rotating ads for other cooking related digital products... mainly cookbooks.

5) Product Reviews. It also makes perfect sense to write reviews of products and services related to your niche and then post those on your blogs or forums. I do that by writing reviews and posting related articles on my blogs and forums.

This works because the reviews, or articles, containing niche specific keywords let the search engines know to rank my blogs or forums highly for those keywords. This content (these reviews) posted regularly, are what call the search engine spiders back time after time to keep re-indexing my sites.

I've just outlined five ways that you can monetize a blog or forum. On many of my sites, the blog or forum is EASILY the most visited page on the entire site. Visitors will often visit the blog or forum on your site repeatedly, and NEVER venture off the blog or forum to check out the other sections of your site.

Therefore, if you do want to earn a living from your website, it is critical that you use proven effective ways to monetize your blogs and forums. I've just given you FIVE that earn thousands of dollars per month for me :-)


About The Author: Shop Amazon - Top Gift Ideas
Willie Crawford is an internationally-acclaimed speaker,author, seminar and radio show host, and leading Internet marketing expert. When not out fishing in the Gulf of Mexico, you'll find Willie sharing his 11 1/2 years of online marketing experience with members of The Internet Marketing Inner Circle Join them at: http://TheInternetMarketingInnerCircle.com

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