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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:11 pm 

Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:31 am
Posts: 1949

Every once in a while, I come across someone online insisting that he is making a ton of passive income from website traffic. However, no one has actually explained this in clear detail without first asking me for money.


Besides outright selling guides to saps, is it possible to make a serious income stream from adclicks and ad views? I remember about 10 years ago advertisers would pay per page view; is that still the case? If so, what is the rate?


If there is any online source that explains website ad revenue, I would greatly appreciate a link.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:18 pm 
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lol, perhaps you nailed it in the first paragraph?


Step 1: promise secrets to blog income.

Step 2: charge for access to secrets.

Step 3: ?

Step 4: profit.


Haha, I'm interested in this myself... I know that Amazon books sold through click-thru can generate several % back. So perhaps just reviewing books is a start.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:22 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:00 am
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There are a lot fog websites that talk about it without charging but you might have to dig. I'd recommend smartpassiveincome.com and look for his niche site summaries.


I used to make about $80(?) month from Adsense when I had a blog that got 3k+ hits/day. I made more from occasional relevant product reviews and selling ads directly to advertisers, but not enough to make it worth all the work. Otoh more commercially directed sites do great. I know someone who has a blog all about photography and makes good money from affiliate links on camera reviews and such.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:58 pm 
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I think one thing that has held me back from starting a blog is lack of "brand" name... Seems like the most successful blogs have relevant brand names that they market.


Another problem being, I want to cover a variety of subjects that are not likely to find common audiences. IE: a blog that talks about investing, home brewing, gardening, trading, politics, hunting, economics, various reviews, real estate investing, frugality is going to probably be a turn off for a lot of people.


perhaps something like:

brandname.com/investing

brandname.com/simpleliving

brandname.com/randomwhatever

Starting to get more complex again, however.


Seems like the most monetarily successful blogs stick to one subject... and then ruin the blog by droning out a weekly piece of crap.


I'd be happy to make enough to buy a beer/month... That suggests I just want a soapbox to foist my rantings on people. :D




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:15 pm 

Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:31 am
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riparian, thanks for the link! This guy really gives some great information in a very easy-to-digest format.


It seems like ad income is really limited, and the bulk of money is made by selling a product like an ebook. I think Jacob's own experience with the ERE book is a pretty good example of this.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:30 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:00 am
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Ad income can be limited, but sometimes not so much. There were like 6 months where I was making $200+ from an ad network, and I know a famous author who makes close to $1k/month from the BlogHer ad network.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:16 am 

Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 12:18 pm
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Check out Nerdy Nomad. She fully discloses all income streams on a monthly basis and talks about her various web projects. Her income disclosures are here: http://www.nerdynomad.com/category/income-report/


If you're web savvy and read between the lines, you can get a pretty good sense of how she's making so much money. She's pretty open about stuff too, here for example. I get jealous sometimes reading her blog: she's making *so* much money with what seems to be not that much effort.


One thing is for sure though: none of this stuff is actually 100% passive.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:31 am 
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I think the secret unofficial numbers in the personal finance blogosphere is $1-7 eCPM ... so if you have 100k views per month, you'd be making somewhere between $100 and $700/month. There are outliers to this.


If you're in the "jokes about dogs"-blogosphere, the numbers are less. PF is one of the best paid niches. [My advice if you want to make money is to stay away from frugality. Focus on "getting out of debt"... your natural readers will be self-selected spenders---as they've managed to spend beyond their means in the past, they likely are impulsive and so they will click on your ads, etc. Cynical maybe ... but that's how the blogging business works.]


In general, the more you treat it like a business, the more you'll make, and the more boring your SEO'ed keyword filled writings will appear. You'll be the online equivalent of a magazine---funded by ads, offending none, presenting the same things on an annual rotation. How many blogs did a superbowl post?


To wit, as long as your writing is good enough, it depends on your self-promotion skills. For example, is the 4HWW great writing or even original? Well, the answer is no to both questions but since it's so well promoted it is the first thing people who don't know any better reads, and there you have it. Indeed if you can expand a niche into virgin territory you can make it huge.


Now, realize that blogging is a rockstar profession. A few people (usually the first) make most of the money(*) and the rest make $100/month. The easy money was made 10 years ago. Back then, you started a blog and since there were few around, everyone who started a blog after you linked to you and so on. Hence, today some blogs are incredibly well linked although they're kinda boring. It's not exactly a level playing field. It's the Matthew-effect of blog-networking. The well-linked get more well-linked. I even enjoy some of that effect myself... why do I keep getting traffic despite not having written much since 2010? Because people have linked to me in the past.


(*) And you might be surprised how many top blogs are actually owned by venture capital companies who have bought out the blogger. And how some bloggers actively pursue this strategy, e.g. start ten blogs, crosslink them heavily and then sell them once they've reached a pagerank of 3.


If you really want to write for money, associated content, helium and the likes offer more bang for the buck. You get paid upfront. Of course if you want to make serious money doing this, you need to be able to tolerate the braindamage that would normally opbtain from writing 50 articles [with slight variations] on how to recycle beer cans in order to provide the content for some blog-flipping entrepreneur who hopes to sell his site that has good keywords for beer, can, and recycling.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:58 am 

Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 9:58 pm
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I think jacob laid it out pretty well here. I enjoy blogging, but as an income producing venture I find it extremely unrewarding. And, it's nothing close to passive.


I blog for three reasons:


1. To document my progress and hold myself accountable.


2. To inspire others and socialize with and learn from like-minded people.


3. To make money.


I find blogging to be incredibly rewarding in regards to the first two reasons, but I make very little money when I consider how much time I put into it. I think that if one blogs to make money exclusively it probably won't be worth it. I look at it as a hobby that I just happen to make a little money on.


I have around 30,000 views a month or so and I average about $90 a month so far.


Hope that helps.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 3:40 am 
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"Now, realize that blogging is a rockstar profession. A few people (usually the first) make most of the money(*) and the rest make $100/month."


Sounds like a pretty steep power-law distribution.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:33 am 
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On more than one occasion I've lamented the problem of great unknown blogs that are hidden deep within search results or blog rolls.


This is essentially a weakness of google's algorithms which rank search results according to how likely you are to end up on a given page through random clicking.


If this was superseded by a heuristic algorithm (e.g. IBM's Watson---the program that won on Jeopardy), which understood what you were searching for instead of just giving you the most popular page associated with your search keyword, it could change the whole SEO/keyword/PageRank game completely. I can't wait for that day.


(This is also why I'm not investing in GOOG. I'm old enough to remember altavista and webcrawler.)




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:35 am 

Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:02 pm
Posts: 379

My blog made usd 4,500 bucks last month..(a nice one for me)


1.5 k books

3 k in consultancy


The big pay off for me is consultancy and running courses...


I have a new course intake next month. I should get between 4-8 students each forking out usd 1k


I do not take adertising...


am i a rockstar yet?




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:04 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:00 am
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You're a rockstar.


Will you share your niche?




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:39 pm 

Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:28 pm
Posts: 14

Alot of people who are making money off web traffic, bought their traffic (even Nerdy Nomad) and bought their backlinks. As Jacob said, it ain't as easy as it used to be. Also, alot of these internet marketers who've been around for awhile share their lists and just push each other's products. If you want to learn about all the badness going on, spend a few afternoons on Salty Droid (.info, I believe). This will cure you of ever spending money on Internet Marketing courses. Sadly, I dropped over ten thousand on various courses before figuring it out as a sham.


Now I run a blog about whatever I want. I'll write about Qigong one day, personal finance the next, my triplets on a third day. A "blog" is not a business. And it took me a while to realize that. I write a few Kindle books a year on whatever I want, including fiction and poetry. And I make about a hundred dollars a month right now, exclusively from book sales. I currently have no ads or adsense on my site.


I will say that you can get a very good education from Smart Passive Income as someone else recommended. Pat is a good guy by all accounts, and to date, he has never had an Internet Marketing course for sale, though I've read recently that he's creating one. In the meantime, you can get an excellent education simply reading his pillar posts and listening to his podcast.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:52 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2011 7:33 pm
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Keyword Academy is an honest site that teaches strategies that will make you money. It is real work however. People put in tons of hours. If you're going to make decent SEO money (more than $100-$200 a month) without being the "Rockstar" blogger that Jacob described...then you'll find that you've got yourself an almost full time job....unless you choose to outsource large amounts of writing in which case you'll need overhead. There are also those who luck into great keywords and make very good money. Calling SEO "passive income" these days just isn't the truth.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:26 pm 
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So many blogs about blogging... I've got it! I will have the first blogs about blogging blog!




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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:08 am 

Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:31 am
Posts: 1949

Wow, thanks everyone for the great info.


I'm not sure what I'm going to do now--my second job is freelance writing for a variety of sites/magazines, and it would be nice to go direct to my readers, but I'm horrible at marketing--it's really my Achilles heel. When I semi-ERE, which may happen next year, I might go full time into setting up a blog and selling a book directly. Alternatively, I have been talking to an agent about publishing a book the traditional route, but the royalties are so ridiculous and book sales are so low nowadays that I just can't see it making financial sense to go with a traditional publisher. There is the chance that it will gain a lot of popularity, but that's about as likely as a website gaining traction.




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