If you’ve been blogging for a while but can’t live on its income alone, you might want to supplement it with other online work because, let’s face it – only a handful of bloggers make six-figure earnings from their sites and you’re not (yet) one of them.
It’s not to say though that you should stop blogging. It’s your passion and you have decent writing skills. But don’t think it’s one of those get-rich-quick schemes. Monetizing a blog doesn’t happen overnight; the highest grossing blogs today started around 2005. So it pays to learn about the money-generating strategies such as advertising, banners, pay per click and the like.
In the meantime, you can take on other work to augment your income. Here are feasible suggestions that will bring in extra cash and still give you time for your blog.
1. Online entrepreneurship
You can sell your own products (food, arts and craft items) or someone else’s, like apparel, shoes, or sports items – the list is endless.
You can make your own website or use create a social media account for your online store. Domain name and hosting for websites require minimal fees compared to a brick and mortar store but competition is fiercer. Or you can sign up to sell through any of the ecommerce sites like eBay, Amazon, Etsy and similar sites. Some are for general selling while others are for niche products. If there’s a local site that’s patronized by online shoppers, sign up on it too. Naturally, you have to be abreast with selling tips and strategies on how to stand out and beat the competition.
Online entrepreneurship doesn’t take up too much of your time, once you have the products displayed or your online store set up.
2. Consultancy or coaching gigs
If you are an expert in a specific field (you have a master’s degree or you’ve written a research paper,) start a niche blog to create awareness of your expertise. You can begin by offering your services for free in your local community or school. Or you can tell your friends of your availability to speak at an event that will benefit from your expertise. In the course of your speaking or coaching gig, network with event organizers and fellow speakers who can contact you for future events.
Don’t forget to hone your public speaking skills by enrolling in a course or reading up on the topic. No matter how good your topic may be, a monotonous and dull tone can put your audience to sleep. Record yourself while giving a speech and take note of your tone, pitch, volume and speed. Talk passionately about your topic and if possible in this internet age, bring something new that the listeners can learn from your talk.
3. Write for print media.
Prophets of doom say print media is dead or, if not yet, will die soon. Statistics have proven them wrong. There are more magazines now than there were a decade ago. Sales of magazines about lifestyle, entertainment and sports are the biggest sellers today, so look into those fields. You can apply for magazine writing jobs and still go on with your blog. If you do get one, brush up on tips for writing in print media.
4. Write an e-book.
Give in to your long-held ambition to write a book. There are many guides on how to write a book, so take it from there. Choose the genre you like best. The importance of editing cannot be emphasized enough. Revise and rewrite for a more compelling read.
An e-book is easier to publish than a print book. Formatting and cover design are not as difficult to do and prices of e-books are lower than the hard copy versions. You can market it through social media and on your blog. Granted, free e-books outsell those that readers have to pay for. But if it’s good and you have great marketing, you can make money from it.
5. Sell photos online.
Learn how to take great photos. Free and paid lessons in online photography will be very helpful in coming up with images that people will pay for. There are beginner and advanced courses to choose from, as appropriate for your level. Invest in a DSLR camera instead of using your smartphone. Bring your camera with you wherever you go. You’ll never know if an opportunity for taking pictures comes up. Images of people, nature, animals and cities sell fast. Bloggers and websites are the biggest buyers of online photos. Websites where you can post your pictures and receive royalties or commissions include Shutterstock, Fotolia and Dreamstime.