Creating a website is easy but making money from it is not. A majority of the people struggle to make money from their blogs and websites. This is especially true if you are running a blog or news website. The reason is, there are already a gazillion number of sites out there and to creating a profitable one is not easy.

To make more money from a blog or news covering website, you need two things.

  1. More traffic from search engines
  2. Finding and the right monetization strategies

What is the best ways to monetize a blog or news site? Are you ready?

Your traffic is the internet or web currency

Whether you know it or not, your success of making money from a blog or news site largely depends on the amount and type of traffic you get from search engines. Not from social media or forums. Although the latter may be simpler, and may give results in the short term, it is not profitable in the long haul.

Traffic from social media and forums are typically in response to a current trend, as trends change, so does your traffic.

Search traffic is the key. But, driving search traffic to a website is completely different now a days.

A long time a go (over a decade, a long time in internet time), people used to spam other sites and forums to build links to increase their traffic. It won’t work now. Google is getting smarter and increasing your search traffic is not easy any more in this Google Post-Panda and Penguin era.

Just remember that, to make money from your blog or news site, you MUST increase your website traffic. Otherwise, it won’t make money. It’s that simple.

For proven ways to increase your website search traffic, you need to focus on doing the right keyword research.

A few great tips to find better keywords that increase your traffic and sales.

  • Focus on finding the long tail keywords, those three and four keyword phrases which are very, very specific to whatever you are selling. You see, whenever a customer uses a highly specific search phrase, they tend to be looking for exactly what they are actually going to buy. In virtually every case, such very specific searches are far more likely to convert to sales than general generic searches that tend to be geared more toward the type of research that consumers typically do prior to making a buying decision. For instance, “tips to lose belly fat” is a good long tail keyword. “belly fat” is a short tail keywords and it’s almost impossible to get traffic to your blogs by target such short tail keywords.
  • Start using the keyword research tools like Google’s Keyword Planner and Long Tail Pro. They help you find the long tail keywords easily. Even if you are a beginner, you will find it easy to perform keyword research with the SEO tools.
  • Find and use the keywords that have monthly competition less than 1,000. That’s a good way to start and you can easily get higher search results by focusing on the less competitive keywords.

Let’s now talk about how can you monetize a blog or news based website.

1. Pay Per Click ads

Almost every biggest news site uses PPC (Pay Per Click) ads to generate money. The Huffington Post is the best example of using PPC ads to make lots of money every single year.

Although these biggest news websites get massive traffic from search engines but you can also make a great income by using PPC ads with decent traffic on your sites.

How do these ad works?

Ad publishing networks like AdSense, Chitika etc display publisher’s ads on your sites and you get money when someone clicks on those ads. So your income from PPC ads is directly related to the traffic and the number of clicks your site generate.

What are the best ways to monetize PPC ads?

Although there are too many networks offering PPC ads to make money from your news sites, the following are few of the best networks which are widely used.

In a nutshell, if you have a news website with more than 100,000 monthly visitors, definitely give a try to PPC ads and you can see some good passive income each month.

2. Banner ads

Unlike PPC ads, displaying banner ads on your sites can help you make more money. But as I said earlier in the article, your website needs more traffic to attract high priced banner ad developers to show on your sites.

Generally, if you get over 100,000 monthly visits, you can attract decent banner ads who can pay you around $200 to $2,000 depending upon the quality of your website audience. US traffic is considered the best when compared to Indian search traffic.

BuySellAds is the best market place where you can find great banner ads to show on your news sites.

Here are few tips if you want to get BuySellAds approval.

  • Your website traffic should be more than 50,000 page impressions per month. Otherwise, your application won’t get approved.
  • Your site should contain original and regularly updated content.
  • Own a self-hosted WordPress site if you don’t have one yet. Don’t use free sites, they won’t get approved.
  • Don’t use too many ads on your sites. Use less but high paying ads that are relevant to your site audience. That way, you can make both the publishers and your visitors happy by making more money.

3. Product Sales

Selling your own or others products from your sites is the most effective monetization model. The best thing about this model is that your news website doesn’t need too much traffic unlike Google AdSense to make decent money.

All you need is to find the RIGHT products your audience are interested in and promote them widely to reach out more people.

Top online marketers such as Pat Flynn, Darren Rowse, John Chow etc are making millions of dollars every single year with affiliate marketing (promoting others products from their blogs). The key to make more money from affiliate marketing is to build trust with your audience and focus more on “people not page views”.

Here are few ideas on how to make more product sales from your news sites.

  • Build an email list. Most people who run news sites don’t build their email lists (especially the beginners). If you build a website that has random visitors, you can’t build a solid monetization model that helps you create passive income online. An email list is a money maker if you build rapport with your subscribers. You can use MailChimp to start building your list for free.
  • Analyze your competitors. Find out the top competitors in your industry and see what products they are promoting to their audience. See if you can you promote those products to make money from your news sites.

How to create a compelling blog or news website

If you are wondering how to increase your overall ad impressions, you need to create an appealing design that is designed to convert more visitors into clicks.


Qcostarica is a custom work based on a Gabfire themes template

For that, I highly recommend you to few of the blog and news website themes offered at Themeforest.

For “niche” news websites, for example, Magazine3 and Gabfire are two leading developers.  I use both, however, modified to my needs on Qcostarica and Today sites.

For blogging themes, Mythemeshop has a large selection of themes that easy to set up, easy to use and easy to modify. One example is my blog Yatzu.


Yatzu runs on MyThemeshop

For more complex blog websites, themes/templates with their own page composer or visual composer enables you to create stunning sites like Costa Rica Confidential (not totally safe for work) or this site, for example.


Costa Rica Extra with Flying News

All the above run on WordPress, my personal choice. WordPress is a ppublishing platform with a focus on aesthetics, web standards, and usability. And free.

What’s important in a design and theme are some features such as:

  • Real-time Visual Theme Customizer
  • Smart Sliders with Swipe Support
  • Mega Menu
  • Responsive
  • Valid HTML5 Markup
  • Translate it to Any Language
  • Works with Popular SEO Plugins like All in One SEO & Yoast’s WordPress SEO
  • And many more WordPress-friendly features that rock your news site
  • Advertisement slots
  • and much more…

If you are a beginner who is looking to design a blog or news site, all the above is a good start.

Today Costa Rica is built with Magazine3

Today Costa Rica is built with Magazine3

If you own a blog or news website? If yes, what are the monetization strategies that you are already using?

Send me a note to discuss YOUR particular needs and goals. Take advantage of MY years of experience in publishing blog and news sites.

My publishing days started way back in the early days of the world wide web (WWW), around the time Google was created (1998).

One of my success stories is Inside Costa Rica, started from scratch in 2000, before WordPress, until I sold it in 2012, to focus more on just one news site: born was the world of the Q, that today published more than a dozen blog and news websites.