Blogging for a living
A common question that new bloggers ask is whether blogging for a living is something that is possible for them. Naturally, blogging carries a great deal of appeal for people of all stripes. I mean, why wouldn't it? Who wouldn't want to work from home, writing about topics that love, while in their pajamas? Indeed most people would.
So, then is it possible to make a full time income blogging? The short answer is that yes, it is very possible. But, unfortunately, the long answer is that it is not particularly easy. Making money blogging is generally the kind of thing that will take a person quite a long time to build up to. Let's look at reasons for this.
Blogging is Cumulative
When you begin a blog, that blog has zero posts, zero content on it. The way that bloggers make money is that they leverage their content into viewers and then either sell advertising and re-route a portion of their traffic via a program such as Google adsense. When a blogger first starts out they are literally starting from zero. When you do not have any posts on your site there is nothing to draw links and nothing for visitors to find in the search engines. However, once you have been working at your blog for awhile and building up your post count, you begin to develop a bit of momentum. For instance, let's say that you want to have 50 pieces of content on your blog. It may take a little while to get to that point where you have 50 posts, but once you are there, you only need to update from time to time. The majority of the work is behind you.
How do Bloggers Make Money?
The key element that you will need in order to be able to blog full time is a sufficient recurring income. The question of how you will achieve this income will dictate the levels of traffic that you will need to sustain it. So, let's say that you think that you can go full time with $3000 a month. In order to achieve this number you will need $100 a day in income. How do bloggers achieve that? There are a number of ways that bloggers monetize their traffic but the two most common ways are through advertising sales and affiliate commissions (including selling traffic). If you use an advertising network and place banner ads on your site, you may only get $1 - $3 per thousand impressions of the ad. So, even if you place several ad units on your page, you will need many thousand daily impressions in order to make a full time income from your blog.
The other way that bloggers make money is by operating affiliate programs where they promote products and services to their readers in exchange for a commission. (I am including Google adsense as an affiliate program even if doesn't fit the description exactly.) So, let's say that, through a combination of Adsense and affiliate offers, you are able to make $50 per 1,000 page impressions. In this case, in order to make a living blogging you will only need 2,000 page impressions a day in order to reach your $100 threshold.
Making a living blogging is something that you will need to accomplish over time, as I hope you can see. There are very few bloggers who went from $0/day to $100/day in a very short time. Now, there are exceptions to this rule, but those bloggers who did achieve financial results more quickly were either already quite experienced or already well known bloggers.
The point of the exercise, however, is to establish the fact that there are thousands of people who make a full time income by blogging. Now, it is estimated that there are literally tens of millions of bloggers and only thousands who do it full time, but this is to be expected in an industry with such a low barrier to entry. Remember that anyone with $20 bucks can get a blog up and running. Because of this there are a great many people who start a project, only to abandon it within a few weeks when they are not yet making thousands of dollars a day.
Can I Make A Living Blogging?
You may be wondering how a person who want to get started blogging should proceed. The best advice that I can give is to get started. The fact of the matter is that you will not make much (if any) money in your first couple of months. But those months are critical for learning the ropes and getting the first layer of content down. Once you have experienced the first couple of months you are able to move onto the next couple of months and you are able to start actually making money. The key element is getting that first period, where you are working for free, behind you and beginning to develop properties that can bring in a serious full time income for the long term. And then you will truly be blogging for a living.