How to make money from your blog

I think there are a few types of bloggers.
  1. Those who blog because there are passionate about something, or want to share something with others.
  2. Those who blog just to make money.
  3. A combination of the previous two bloggers.
If you are reading this, you are probably the third type of blogger. You probably already have a blog and have begun wondering if you can make money on your blog or not.  This post will talk about why you should or shouldn't try to make money on your blog and what you can expect in your attempt.

There are hundreds (if not thousands) of articles about making money using your blog.  This post is different.  Rather than telling you how, I am going to SHOW you an experiment over time.  Here is the breakdown:

  • Should I try to make money using my blog?
  • How much money can I expect to make?
  • How can I make money?

Should I try to make money using my blog?

Sure. Well....  maybe.  The truth is, if you want to make money, it takes a lot of time and work...   the real question is if you are already putting a lot of time and work into your blog. If you are, there is little extra work to make money... if you only post once a month or less, the chances of you making any money is pretty slim.  What you really need to determine is how much money you will be able to make and if it is worth the extra time and effort.

How much money can I expect to make?

This is the real question that everyone wants to know, but the hardest one to get a concrete answer for.  I will track my progress on a weekly or monthly basis and post my data below.  Keep coming back to check the progress and you can compare it to the progress of your blog.

Week 1 - New Blog; New Beginnings; Google Adsense.

Evaluation of Month 1/Week 4:
I have been actively blogging for about a month now. I have been trying to promote my blog as well.

Viewers for month: about 1500
Earning for month (including clicks): about $6
Earning per day (not including clicks): about 2 - 4 cents. = 60 - $1.20 per month.

At this rate I am making anywhere from $11 - $70 per YEAR.  Yeah. Not a lot of money.

Since this is the first evaluation,it is VERY general an inaccurate.  As I continue to do this, data will become more conclusive.

Advice for Month 1:
If you have 1500 or less visits per month, you should not be blogging for money, but blog because you enjoy it.

Week 5 - A Good Post

Interesting... If I would have updated yesterday, this post would have been pretty different.

Evaluation of week 5:
For most of the week things were going about the same as they were the week before.  A couple days ago I did a post on wedding photography using the Gimp.  Apparently either wedding photos or the Gimp is significantly more popular than what I had been posting before (mainly Inkscape tutorials) because my stats have more than double in those couple days. What is great is that I have started noticing links to my site from other places with out me soliciting any links.

Viewers for this week: 2741 - 1638 = 1103
Earning for this week (including clicks): 9.57 - 6.13 = 3.44

Conclusion: Over a thousand views this week.  Not bad.  I think I might do some more Gimp posts and see if it continues the sharp rise in stats.
$3.44 for a week.  That is good enough for a free meal a month! Woot!  This stat is kind of skewed...  I think I had a click somewhere in the night that brought in a couple of dollars...  Hmm.  If I kept up this rate though, that would be about $175 a year.  That is enough for a terrible computer!

Advice for Week 5:
Try to add some variety to your posts until you get a winner.  The post I added a couple days ago is already my second most popular post; by the end of the day it will probably become the most popular post.  If All my posts were as popular as that one, I would likely be getting over a thousand views a day.  Still not quite worth it if you are Blogging for money though.

One thing I might mention as well.  I changed my adds a bit; I tried to place them in a better location; I also changed the look a bit so they look less like ads and more like useful links that are supposed to be there.  Hopefully this helps a bit.

Week 6 - Getting Lucky

Evaluation of week 6:
You can definitely see a spike in stats. I got lucky and one of my posts was listed on a Linux news site.  For the week I have been averaging about 400 views a day with the exception of the spiked day where I got more than 2000!  Crazy...  I thought the day I got 1000 views would be far in the future....  I guess my real goal should be to get 1000 views every day for a week.

Also, I found that Tutorial Geek now finally shows up when you do a Google search.  Almost all of my visitors are being referred from other sites though, and not Google (quite a few from Google images though).

Viewers for the week: 7764 - 2741 = 5023
Earnings for the week: 16.80 - 9.57 = $7.23

$7.23 for a year would be $376.  That is enough to buy a cool geeky gadget. Yay.  Things are not looking too bad. I don't count on getting lucky all the time. I would say though, it seems that over time, more people start linking to my site, and I think I can expect to see numbers to continue to gradually climb.  It does seem that more posts, or great posts don't really show any instant increases in stats, but they do increase the likelihood of people linking to your site over time.

Advice for week 6:
Pick what people like and go with it. Also find good sites that you can post comments or links to.  When your blog is starting out, no one will find it, but if you post links and comments, some people will visit, and if it is good enough, people will start posting links.  If you get lucky like I did this week, you will get a great spike in numbers.

(Note: I am publishing this post today, but that does not mean I am done with the post.  I still plan on doing weekly updates.)

Week 7 - Steady

Evaluation of Week 7:
This was a good week to evaluate because I think it was pretty indicative of a normal week.  No huge spike in the stats, but a fairly steady increase. Not a lot of clicks on ads.

Viewers for the week: 10756 - 7764  = 2992
Earnings for the week: 19.91 - 16.80  =$3.11

Even if you get 1000+ viewers a day, you are not going to be making significant money.  If you wanted to blog as a full time job...  wow...  I don't even know how many views you would need.  From the stats this week, it looks like you get about a dollar for every 1000 viewers.  $100 a day would be decent...  you would need 100,000 viewers a day for that to realistically happen.  That is A LOT!

Advice for Week 7:
Blog because you love what you are blogging about.  I love what I am blogging about, and am building up a portfolio and improving my skills at the same time. The fact that I don't really make money is fine. I put many many hours into my blog.

Reread Google adsense terms and conditions.  Details were vague and hard to understand, but I took my graph images off this post just to play it safe. I love Google and don't want to do anything they don't want me to.

I am just going to do short occasional posts if things change or if I have significant thoughts.

I average about 5 cents a day with about 450 viewers a day.   This is about $20 a year

It has been a couple months since my last update. My average views per day have been about 1000 over the past few weeks. It certainly fluctuates depending on what sites link to mine. With no sites posting my tutorials or articles, I get about 800-900 a day. With other sites helping me out, I get about 1000-3000.

One thing I have noticed which I have been waiting to happen for a while is to have Google start kicking in more. Tutorial Geek is now the first thing that comes up when you do a Google search. Google is also now one of my top referring links. It used to be that no traffic was generated from search engines. Google is my 6th highest referrer for the month and 4th for the week. Climbing up for sure. I am hoping eventually it climbs to number one.

My ads are also doing a lot better. I have them places on top, left and right. No ads in the content, they are all on the side or top. This seems to be working quite well. Ever since I made the change, I instantly noticed more money coming in (still next to nothing though). For the week I have about $10. If that rate continues (and it probably should if I keep posting) then that is $520/year. Certainly enough for a decent laptop!

The real question I have now is what would happen if I just stopped posting. How long would it be before everything completely died? Or would it? I don't plan on finding this out any time soon. Just a thought.

About McKay


  1. Hello,

    Nice blog and hope to see more GIMP tutorials ;).
    Regarding this post, I had also Google Adsense but stopped using it because the earnings were to little on my simple site and the ads are annoying. Now with AdBlock Plus,if someone has installed this on FF,Chrome or Opera, you can't see the ads.

    For ads you can also use Viglink, Chikita, affiliated sites but you have to have big traffic and lots of clicks!

    Good luck with your blog!
    I've saved the RSS ;)

  2. Hey thanks! Hope to put some more Gimp posts up soon.

    I run AdBlock Plus myself and love it. My intent certainly is not to make money, but I am more or less curious to see how it could be done realistically and perhaps putting some honest realistic information on my blog. I have the impression that some people thing that they can make a bit of money on their blog, but the reality is that you need thousands of viewers every day to even start being in a position to where you can make money.

  3. Interesting article. I want to use BuySellAds on my upcoming tutorial blog, I believe it will be better than adsense.

  4. It still looks fabulous, however, and congratulations on a job well done! You are so inspirational and you talk sense in your posts.


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