how to monetize a blog 2021

How to Monetize a Blog in 2021: Five Tried and True Tactics

Using a blog to generate profits is one of the most talked about affiliate marketing tactics today. We had a chance to get some industry insight from Adam Enfroy, creator and visionary behind AdamEnfroy.com–which gets over 500,000 readers per month. Adam shed some light on how to monetize a blog in 2021 and what it takes to gain traction in the industry.

Adam Enfroy got into scaling his own content by accident. He started his website in 2019 as a digital resume. However, after applying his knowledge of digital marketing, SEO, and branding to his own URL, the affiliate marketing money started coming in. 

Within six months, he was able to quit his full time job at a tech company and focus on growing his brand and monetizing his blog. 

According to Adam, having a fundamental and proficient knowledge of how SEO works definitely aided in his success. 

“Although my blog became a huge success, I failed plenty of times in the past. Back then, I simply didn’t know what I didn’t know. But my professional career led me to the cutting edge of SEO and I learned how to scale traffic quickly. Today, I write to 500k monthly readers and made my first $1 million with my blog in under two years.” 

Start Where You Are 

Admittedly Adam’s background is unique. He has experience as an SEO specialist, a digital marketing manager, an ecommerce marketing manager, an affiliate manager, and head of digital marketing for a company with an 8-figure ad budget. 

If you are reading this blog, your resume likely does not include anywhere near the kind of experience that Adam has. 

But that’s okay. One of Adam’s top pieces of advice is to just go for it.

“It’s never too late to get started. The entire reason I created my blog was to show that it’s still possible to make life changing money with affiliate marketing in months, not years. You just need the right tactics, and you need to scale.” 

So, what are the right tactics? And how do you scale? Here are Adam’s top tips and tactics for how to monetize a blog in 2021. 

How to Monetize a Blog in 2021

Tactic 1: You need a monetization plan from Day 1.

According to Adam, if you want to monetize your blog, you have to solidify a plan to do so from the beginning. 

“Blogging about your passions as a hobby and creating a lucrative blogging business are two entirely different things. You need a monetization plan from the start. This means focusing on targeting the right informational and transactional keywords.”

One of the best ways to build out a monetization plan is to do diligent and through market research. Market research is going to provide you with the data and insights you need to figure out what to write about and who to write it for.

Tactic 2:  Don’t Get Held Up on Choosing the Perfect Niche 

Adam encourages new bloggers to let go of the idea that they need to identify and get too narrow to try and attract a hyper-specific following.

“Bloggers want to choose ‘the perfect niche.’ So they create a micro-niche site and try to dominate one very small area. The problem with this approach is two fold. One, it’s almost impossible to select the perfect niche as a beginner. And two, choosing a small niche doesn’t give you the freedom to pivot.” 

Instead, choose a broad enough subject area to allow yourself the room to figure out what actually works. For Adam, his blog gave him sufficient space to grow into the content that best worked for his audience. With this room to grow, he was able to tailor his content and scale his business based on what he learned. 

Tactic 3: Get Out of Your Comfort Zone 

If you want to monetize your blog, you’re going to need to act like a marketer. This means promotion and, most importantly, back link campaigns.

Adam encourages new bloggers to be extra outgoing to promote their content. 

“The whole ‘write and they will come’ idea about content is simply not true when it comes to blogging. Yes, you need great content, but you also need high-authority backlinks pointing to that content. In my blog’s first year, I wrote 80 articles on my own blog and 82 guest posts on other high authority blogs. I also built tons of relationships with other sites in my niche and grew my domain rating to the 70s in less than a year. 

Networking is going to be a highly important part of how you monetize your blog. One way to “bump” into people in your niche is to join forums like Quora, Reddit, and Facebook groups. Keep your online image professional and find other people who may benefit from a co-marketing back-link campaign. This essentially means that you post their URL and they post yours. 

These kinds of relationships will continue to be a huge benefit to you as you begin to scale. It’s not just who you know, it’s what their web presence, domain rating, and content can do for you as well. 

Tactic 4: Treat Your Blog Like a Business

In addition to developing a plan to monetize your blog from day 1, you also need to treat your blog like it’s your business from the get-go. This can get tricky to prioritize especially if you’re the one who is also doing all of the writing. Adam encourages new bloggers to consider outsourcing some of the writing work so you can focus on building your brand. 

“Remember, you’re a business owner, not just a writer. Since most bloggers build blogs as side hustles while working full time, time is limited. If you’re only writing, you’re not gonna progress all that fast. Instead, see if you can outsource some components of your blog like writing first drafts and doing link building outreach. That will give you more time to focus on what’s most meaningful to your business.”

Hiring a copywriter to help with the writing tasks can seem like an unnecessary expense but with so many resources out there to find writers for hire, you can find a balance between talent and budget with a little searching. 

Tactic 5: Link Building is a Must 

After you hire a writer to help grow your content library, you can pivot your focus to link building. Link building is the most salient way to get Google to index your site as important and share your content in search results. 

Adam warns against the myth of passive link building. In this competitive age of affiliate marketing, it takes way more than just good content to get your post shared and spread your links across the web.

You’ll need to educate yourself on the best practices of link building, and then start executing on your link building strategy out the gate if you want to monetize your blog. This may take some time and a little bit of failure. See why outsourcing some of that writing is important?

 Tactic 6: Learn About & Understand Search Intent 

The last and arguably most important tactic when it comes to learning how to monetize a blog in 2021 is understanding and learning about search intent. 

Search intent is the goal in mind of the searcher. What exactly are they looking for when they go to Google? How can you make sure that your page is the last page they visit? 

This is truly where the rubber meets the road with blogging. According to Adam, SEO is not enough anymore. 

“You can’t target a keyword, use SEO tools, and expect to rank. You need to ‘end the search journey’ by being the last website someone visits from search. To do this, you need to understand search intent and format your content to be straight to the point and valuable with a good user experience.” 

The best way to think about your blog, Adam advises, is like a mediator.

“Your blog is a mediator. It’s the mediator between a transactional Google search and a purchase.”

If you want your page to be the page that searchers make a purchase on, you need to write about keywords with transactional search intent, so that when a reader hits your blog post, they are ready to click affiliate links and make a purchase. 

“You can find good transactional keywords in any niche by looking for ‘best’ terms,” says Adam. “For example, in finance this could be, ‘best credit cards.’ In tech it’s ‘best laptops.’ Or it could be, ‘best golf irons,’ ‘best dog toys,’ ‘best protein powder’–there are transactional searches in every niche.”

When people search for “best products,” they are looking for a long-form list with recommendations–not product pages. Affiliates are used to mediate the purchase–not the blog. 

What does the future of monetizing blogs look like? 

Harnessing the power of affiliates in this way can help you expedite monetizing your blog and scale quickly. Pair this practice with the other tactics, and 2021 very likely could be the year you crack your own personal code and monetize your blog. Keep in mind though, that affiliate marketing is a pervasive and highly lucrative internet marketing industry. Adam encourages new bloggers to keep competition in mind. 

“The truth is, there are no blue oceans anymore in affiliate marketing. If something is making money, it’s guaranteed to be competitive. And now, major brands with hundreds of employees are entering the picture. To compete in 2021 and beyond, you need to up your game, think like a CEO, scale your systems, build real partnerships to get links, and hustle.” 

About the Author 

With over 500,000 monthly readers, Adam Enfroy’s mission is to teach the next generation of online entrepreneurs how to scale their influence at startup speed. 

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