12 Ways To Monetize Your Website
So you’ve built a website and are pretty happy with it. Congratulations! Running a website can be a very fulfilling hobby. However, you might be wondering how to monetize your website so that you can make your hobby pay dividends — or at least cover the cost of running your site. In that case, you’ll need some guidance regarding the numerous monetization strategies out there. That’s why we’ve compiled some actionable information on how to make money with a website.
Your website is a potential cash cow, and you don’t want to let your virtual crops wither on the vine. Just remember that any monetization technique is dependent on whether your site has a steady stream of regular visitors. If you’re not there yet, you’ll first need to build your audience. Once you’ve garnered some attention, that’s when it’s time to monetize.
How To Monetize Your Website
A popular website can have you earning significant revenue, either as a side gig or even as a primary source of business income. Let’s go through some of the best website monetization techniques that can see you making bank off your passion. You might even have some fun.
#1: Use Google AdSense
One of the most popular ways to earn revenue from your website is to utilize Google AdSense. Suppose you apply for AdSense and are accepted. In that case, Google will place contextual ads (ads keeping with the nature of your site content) from its extensive advertising network on your site, which generates revenue with every click. A portion of this revenue will go right to you. Thankfully, Adsense is free to use.
If you’ve got a website that garners a decent amount of page views, you may feel tempted to ask your followers to click on your ads every day to help you out. Well, don’t do that because it’s considered click fraud, and Google will catch you and revoke your AdSense approval. Likewise, sites involving pornography, firearms, or drugs won’t get approved by AdSense, thus closing off a website monetization avenue to the most grassroots forms of entrepreneurship.
Want to learn more? Check out these links!
#2: Sell Ad Space On Your Site
Want to earn revenue from ads on your site while cutting out the middle man? You can always sell ad space on your site or blog directly to advertisers.
Advertisers use a number of different compensation methods:
- CPM: CPM stands for Cost Per Mille (“mille” means “thousand” in Latin). Advertisers paying by CPM are paying a certain rate for every thousand page views of your site.
- CPC: “Cost Per Click” advertising is what it sounds like: Advertisers pay for every click registered on the ad in question. CPC has grown to become the predominant means of advertiser compensation.
- CPE: “Cost Per Engagement” ad compensation aims to monetize not just pageviews (or “impressions”) but whether the viewer engaged with it in some way.
- CPV: “Cost Per View” compensation primarily concerns video advertising and measures the number of plays a particular ad video gets.
This list does not cover every possible means of online ad compensation, but the point is that different kinds of websites may benefit from different ad programs. For instance, CPC ads may appeal to small online companies with a particular niche. Mobile-focused sites would be well-advised to go for CPE ads, as mobile ads should be geared toward user engagement for maximum turnover.
Read more on the subject:
- 5 Things You Must Do Before Jumping Into Paid Internet Advertising
- BuySellAds.com (The most popular ad market)
#3: Affiliate Marketing
An estimate from Statista.com projects that spending on affiliate marketing will reach $8.2 billion by 2022. If you run a site or blog where you showcase the latest and greatest in gadgets, clothes, novels, video games, or any other product under the sun, why not tap some of this money and monetize your site through affiliate marketing?
If you love a product and would be proud to be associated with it, sign up with that company’s affiliate program in question. They’ll send you a link that lets them track everybody who clicks your link to their product. If the user then buys the product, you get a commission. Commission rates can vary from 30% to 70% of the sale.
Now, if you’re going to try affiliate marketing, stick to promoting things you believe in and that jibe with your brand. People can generally smell disingenuousness, so don’t turn off your existing followers by going to bat for something that isn’t you.
Here’s more info for you aspiring affiliates:
- The Ultimate Guide to Affiliate Marketing
- Amazon Associates
- CJ Affiliate by Conversant (Large affiliate marketing company)
#4: Build an eCommerce Website
Statista.com projects global eCommerce revenue to grow to $6.43 trillion by 2022. If you have products or services to sell and are prepared to put in the work, consider building an eCommerce website and getting in on some of this money.
There are several ways you can go about selling online. Services such as Shopify and BigCommerce allow you to build an online store. You can then embed that service’s widget into your existing website. Consider going this route if you plan to append a store to your existing website.
On the other hand, if you’re starting an online store from scratch, you may want to use a website builder that incorporates an online store as a feature. Website builders such as Squarespace and Wix provide in-house eCommerce widgets, ensuring that your online store integrates seamlessly with the rest of your site. Other website builders utilize third-party eCommerce solutions, such as Ecwid and PayPal.
Might eCommerce be your thing? Check out these links:
- 3 Steps To Launch Your First eCommerce Website
- Shopify (Popular, well-regarded eCommerce platform)
- Best eCommerce Software of 2020
#5: Take Donations
This method of earning revenue is highly dependent on being a compelling/sympathetic figure with something rewarding to offer the public. If you think you fit the bill, you might try accepting donations.
Adding a PayPal Donate button to your website is a simple and easy way to solicit support for building the foundation upon which your dreams will be made tangible.
PayPal buttons aren’t the only way to fundraise online, though. Read more on the subject:
#6: Build an Email List
To get people excited about your content and invested in what you’re doing, it helps to cultivate a personal relationship with them. A good way to keep your most loyal followers engaged is with an email list. This won’t make you money overnight, but it will certainly set you on the path to greater profitability.
Learn how to build a solid email list:
#7: Flip Your Website
As it happens, there are markets for buying and selling websites. Admittedly, this isn’t the best way to monetize a website, as you could make a lot more money by building it in the long term.
Sometimes, however, you can’t wait for the long term. People get hurt and have hospital bills to pay. People lose their jobs. Sometimes you need quick cash, so it’s nice to know that you can cash in your website in a pinch.
Just as with housing, you can also buy websites to sell them for a profit. If you find a site or blog that attracts significant attention but has not been monetized, you could scoop up the site, monetize it using the helpful tips you’ve picked up here, and, having increased its value, sell it for a nice sum.
Here are some flipping links to help you out:
- How To Flip Websites In 2019 – Flipping Websites Made Easy
- Flippa (Popular website marketplace)
#8: Charge People For Access To Password-Protected Pages
People have been trained for the past 25+ years to expect their web content for free. It’s always a challenge to get people to pay for premium web content. However, it’s certainly not impossible.
Website builders often allow you to put content behind a paywall. If you have compelling content that people would be willing to pay to see (journalism, photos, paintings, etc.), build a membership site and charge people for the entry password.
To learn more:
- The Ultimate Guide to Subscription Revenue
- 12 Successful Subscription Sites And What They’re Doing Right
#9: Generate & Sell Leads
There’s money to be made in generating leads, especially if your website caters to a particular niche or industry.
Let’s say you run a website that tracks team statistics for a bowling league. You could have the members of your site opt-in to receive information from companies that manufacture bowling equipment. Or maybe you run a financial advice forum. Have your members opt-in to receiving information from financial service companies.
You don’t want to ambush your readers with spammy sales offers. Be selective. If done right, you’ll be connecting people with services they’re looking for anyhow.
Read more about lead generation:
- The Beginner’s Guide to Lead Generation: 7 Essential Resources
- 21 Smart Ways to Generate More Leads for Your Business
#10: Offer Consulting
In this hyper-specialized age, everybody’s an expert at something. When seeking ways to monetize website content, try capitalizing on your expertise by offering online consulting services! You can do this either by setting up an expert profile with a third-party consulting service and linking it to your website or through a direct offer straight from you.
You can offer your consulting services via email, Skype, Zoom — anything that puts you in touch with people yearning to drink from the fountain of knowledge that is your brain.
Learn more about online consulting:
#11: Teach Courses Online
There’s a good deal of demand out there for online courses in tech and design skills that the next generation will require to afford to live anywhere fashionable.
Along with consulting, teaching courses online is a means by which you can monetize your brain and your life experiences. It’s not a way to get rich quick, as course preparation involves labor, but it’s certainly a way to capitalize on the goodwill you’ve built up with your loyal followers.
Check these links for more info, Professor:
#12: Start A Podcast
Your target audience may be receptive to your knowledge but may lack the time to enroll in online courses or consult with you via video messaging. They might prefer to hear what you have to say while they’re driving to work or out jogging.
Why not start a podcast and host it on your website? If you can record audio, you can create a podcast. It’s an ideal accompaniment to a blog, and it can open up new advertising/marketing possibilities.
Some of us have a face for Zoom, while others have a face for podcasting. Showcase your expertise strategically.
Check out these podcasting links:
Making Money With Your Website
These 12 monetization methods are by no means the only ways to monetize a website. I just wanted you to understand the broad range of possibilities at play.
That’s not to say it’ll be easy, but you have nothing to lose by giving site monetization a shot! Every penny you wring from your website is a penny you’ll have earned by means other than toiling away at the office.
If you don’t yet have a website to monetize and you want to change that, check out our guide to the best website builders for small businesses.