This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosure page for all the details.
So, you started a blog, you put in the time and the hard work, you read 1000 different posts about making money from your blog, and yet, you cannot seem to crack the code on bringing in a profit from your blog.
Don’t worry, you are not alone. There are SO many bloggers out there who are feeling the same frustration your feeling, and I was totally one of those bloggers too. When I first started blogging over two years ago, I threw some affiliate links on my website, and then questioned why they weren’t bringing me in any money.
Finally after a ton of trial and error, and a lot of time, hard work, and research, I finally started seeing real results!
So, I decided to reflect on the things I changed in order to actually see an income from my blog, and turn that into a blog post for you!
8 Reasons you probably aren’t making money from your blog:
1 | You Won’t Invest in Yourself or Your Blog
One thing that defiantly helped me was to stop trying to figure it out all on my own. When I finally decided to invest in myself and my blog, I seen INSTANT improvement.
I took courses from people who are successful and have the numbers to show it, and I took in as much of their knowledge as I possibly could.
I also invested in various blogging tools that assist me in growing my traffic, email list, and overall community. By doing this, I see more sales and profit.
So, what exactly did I invest in?
I obviously did not invest in all of these things right away! As a new blogger, I don’t expect you to either. As I started to make a little income, I would invest it back into my blog in hopes of it helping me grow and earn even more in the long term.
Those are the only two things I would consider a “must have” for a new blogger. For more information on why I believe that, check out these posts:
2 | You Have No Plan or Strategy
You honestly cannot just wing it and expect to make a profit from your blog. Even affiliate links takes a ton of strategy and planning.
Initially I thought I could throw a few links to Amazon on my site and I would make money easily through their affiliate program. No. That was NOT the case.
You need to be strategic and plan your posts around your affiliate program. Create tutorials, reviews, posts where your affiliate link fits in. You also need to utilize your email list and pitch your affiliate programs to them.
Honestly, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing really changed the way I utilized affiliate links. I now plan everything out to ensure I am optimizing ALL of my blog posts as best I can. If you want to use affiliate marketing effectively, this course seriously has a butt load of valuable information and knowledge. If you can handle the price tag, it is totally worth it.
But, it is not just affiliate marketing that takes planning. If you are launching a product or course, that also takes lots of planning. You want to have a successful launch, so you want to really hype it up, create sales funnels, freebies that draw your audience in as a pre-cursor for your course or product, etc. This takes time and hard work, but ultimately spending a few months ensuring those tools are in place, will help your launch and overall sales be more successful.
I have experience with a rushed launch, that involved little to no real planning, and although I still made about $300, I could have made much more if I actually spent the time to plan and create a solid strategy.
3 | You Didn’t Start Right Away
It is never too early to start monetizing your blog. Especially with affiliate links.
Here is the thing. So many bloggers wait until they have more traffic before really focusing on monetizing their blogs. I know with my first blog, I totally waited too.
Start working on your course idea now. Start working on your e-book now. That way you can take the time you need to get it perfect, plan your launch, plan your sales strategies, etc. Maybe it takes you 4-6 months, by then you probably have a decent little email list to launch to, and fairly good traffic coming in to market to.
So you see instead of waiting UNTIL you have good traffic and an email list to start creating your course, then rushing because you are eager to see some income. You took the time you needed, and by the time you were finished you have an audience to launch to, and some popular posts and freebies to use for lead magnets.
Another situation you do not want to happen is this: You work really hard on a post about your favorite health and fitness products. There is a variety of strategic places that you could be promoting affiliate links within the post, but you don’t really know anything about affiliate marketing yet, so you decide to wait until you get more traffic and page views and then you can invest in an e-book or course about how to use affiliate marketing.
Then your post goes viral.
And you weren’t ready.
Now, you have missed thousands of opportunities for people to have clicked your affiliate links and make a purchase.
You want to make sure your posts are optimized from the VERY BEGINNING!!! A post can go viral overnight.
4 | You Don’t Want to Turn Off Your Audience by Being “Sales-y”
The key here is to ensure you are not ONLY pitching sales. You always want to make sure you are actively engaged with your readers and email list. Every post should not be pushing a sale of some kind. Also, your email list should see lots of consistent emails from you offering value without pushing a sale.
That way, when you email about an affiliate product or a new course, they know you genuinely believe in that product, or they love your free stuff so much, they will be interested in purchasing your course.
If you build up trust and loyalty, your readers will trust that you are only promoting the things you love and enjoy, not just trying to make a quick buck.
Side note: You SHOULD only be promoting the things you have personally used and love. If you are promoting every affiliate product under the sun, your audience will see through that!
5 | You Gave Up When You Didn’t See Overnight Results
I hate to break your heart if you are someone who believes blogging is a get rich quick scheme, because it really is the opposite. It has the potential to bring you a very large income, but it takes time and hard work.
Like I mentioned, you need to plan and be strategic with affiliate links, as well as launching and selling any products or courses. And for other things such as ads, selling services, etc. you really need to increase your traffic, which can take some time.
In my post, 6 Awesome Ways to Make Money With Your Blog, I talk about the different ways you can start generating income with your blog. Every single one of them involves time, planning, and marketing.
You will not see overnight results. Sure, you may get an affiliate sale or two instantly if you are optimizing your posts from the very beginning, but, you will not make a full-time income in your first month as a blogger.
That does not mean you should give up! Keep at it, work hard, make a plan, invest in yourself and your blog, and you will see results.
6 | Your Attracting the Wrong Audience
Okay, I actually have a great example of this. The first blog I started is all about self-development in your twenties. I worked hard on building my audience around that topic. All of my freebies and opt-ins are dedicated to bettering yourself in someway, and I even have an e-course about Overcoming Self Doubt as a Twenty Something.
SO, when I decided I wanted to start blogging about blogging, and helping others start their own blogs, I started posting blog posts on THAT blog about starting a blog, the best blogging tools for new bloggers, etc.
Those posts did not do well. The reason they did not do well is because about 90% of my audience could not care less about them. They came to my blog for tips on self-improvement, not for tips on blogging.
So, I started this blog! So I could share my knowledge with the right audience.
Make sure you are focused and stay on topic. When you blog mainly about budgeting and finance for example, and then one day you pitch a book about cooking to your email list, chances are the sales conversion from that product to your list of people interested about finances, is not going to be very good.
7 | You Don’t Maintain Your Posts
One thing I highly recommend (coming from someone who DID NOT do this in the beginning), create a tracker.
You want something that shows you what blog posts have what affiliate links in them, what posts have opt-in freebies, lead magnets, etc. and what posts have links to other posts.
Trust me you will need this. You cannot possible remember where every link is. And if you ever need to change a link, or an opt-in freebie, this will save your life.
8 | You Aren’t Optimizing Your Blog
I already touched on this, but optimizing your blog and blog posts makes all the difference in the world.
Are you missing places where you could have an affiliate link? or a possible lead magnet to your course? Are you interlinking your posts?
Are you using opt-in freebies to grow your email list? (side note: here are 10 awesome opt-in ideas for you to get started)
Another great option is creating a resources page with all of your favorite tools and resources that are relevant to your niche. So for example, mine is filled with tools I use for blogging. But, if you blog about health and fitness, your resource page would include products and tools you use for your health and fitness. This is a GREAT way to have a bunch of affiliate links in one spot, but it is also a super valuable page for your readers.
So, there you have it! Those are 8 possible mistakes you may be making if you have been blogging for a while but aren’t seeing any income rolling in. Don’t worry, I have been there! Implement the changes and keep working hard, you WILL get there!!