I love the combination of being a traveler, working on my blog, and making money. Being a digital nomad is great fun but one of the biggest obstacles I face is trying to earn the necessary finances to fund the lifestyle I enjoy so much. Making ends meet can sometimes be difficult, often necessitating having to join other platforms, under-pricing yourself, and working very long hours to make a credible income.Sharing your experiences of where to go and what to do when you get there is only part of the fun of writing a travel blog. Contributing to changing the mindset of regular tourists is part of the attraction as you help them discover there is more to travel than an annual vacation. With experience garnered by being a digital nomad you can provide a unique perspective on ways to travel on a budget, where to go, and what to see. Letting people know the truths about traveling – the good, the bad and the ugly – is a motivating and rewarding experience.
Monetizing your blog is a great way forward for yourself in earning some of that necessary income. You also may even inspire others to try things for themselves as they read about your experiences.
The task can seem a bit daunting as there are quite a number of established travel bloggers but never doubt the importance and effect of the original, unique information you have. These are your experiences, stories you can write with confidence and expertise. This different, personal perspective is always attractive.
To achieve a blog that will stand out and earn you followers and income requires planning. Certain aspects are essential such as growing a name for yourself, creating cornerstone content, and building an audience. Want to give it a go? Not sure where to start? Take a look at these best practices for monetizing your blog.
1. Write An eBook
Information products are always well accepted, so create and build your digital product then sell it on your website. Offering great content for free is also a good foundation for your monetization strategy. Getting people to check out your product, such as an eBook, encourages them to dig deeper into the topic they are reading.
This will begin to build traffic on your site as you engage people with your words and make them want to know more. A sidebar and sales page would help in this, or even a whole section on your homepage.
Offering your eBook on platforms such as Amazon helps alongside promoting the product on your platform. This, in turn, helps you become recognized as an authority in the travel niche. As a published author as well as a blogger, you start to be taken more seriously.
2. Video Course
People love video content, often preferring to watch a video instead of listening to audio or reading long articles. Every year the numbers increase. Video content engages on a different level than just written word, so consider providing your information as a video course.
Statistics tell us that around 74% of all internet traffic is video and including a video on your landing page increases conversion rates by 80%. The 100 million people watching online video daily gives an unmistakable message: people like videos! Learning a skill or how to do something, or just getting the insider views on, say, traveling are all popular types of video content.
Plan your content based on what you know and have experienced. Include elements like how to pack light, preparing for your first trip, starting a travel blog and monetizing it, how to stay healthy and productive on the road, how to be safe while traveling, or any other relevant content. Then, shoot short videos covering a single aspect of your topic choices. These form your very own traveling course. Once completed and ready to go, consider putting it on Udemy, Lynda, or one of the other top sites for online education.
3. Affiliate Marketing
Do not dismiss what’s been tried and tested: the affiliate marketing model could be what works for your site. Straightforward to undertake, choose products to mention that are related to your content and will be of interest to readers. You then earn a commission every time you make a sale.
You need to test this idea out and see if it works for your style and audience before you start relying solely on it. Of course, your blog needs to look professional so people won’t think you’re a scam and will feel safe clicking on your links.
It’s worth having a few key elements in place. Some of the main ones include:
- Good web hosting so your site loads fast
- Choosing professional-looking blog themes
- Quality content that’s also well-formatted
- A detailed about page
- Sharing your contact details in visible places
- Eye-catching images
- Attention-grabbing titles
- Proper keywords and good overall SEO of the site
- Calls to action on every page
- Simple navigation
4. Sponsored Content
For some travel bloggers, one of the sweetest ways to make money is in this field. Then again, others can’t make it work for them so this all depends on a few factors.
For starters, you first need to grow your traffic and have an engaged audience before you can expect anyone to pay you to mention their brand or link to their website. Once you get there, it’s safe to say you might be offered free accommodation in every part of the world along with getting paid hundreds of dollars just to write a review for a hotel or restaurant.
Achieving this result requires hard work and dedication. It won’t happen overnight. That’s why if your goal is to make money with sponsored content you should first monetize your site in another way while slowly but steadily growing your brand.
Placing ads on your website remains one of the popular ways to monetize the site, although it doesn’t work as well as it once did. People are much more wary of clicking on ad links, although it is still worth testing how your audience reacts. Consider signing up for Google AdWords and placing banners in your sidebar or inside the content.
Check out other platforms whose advertising networks might work well for you and offer quick approval, like Media.net, Bizvertizer, and Chitika. Also, there are other faster and simpler ways to make your first bucks such as adding free online survey sites.
Last but not least, there’s another great option for monetizing your travel blog: offer a consultation service to your visitors on any topic related to travel they have issues with.
If you see your articles are gaining attention, you can start talking with people on Skype or the phone and giving them tips depending on their particular situation, financial aspects, aspirations, and passions. You can try sites like Clarity.fm as well.
It is essential you are authentic and know what you are talking about. To be taken seriously you need to become the go-to guy for trustworthy, factual information. Share your experiences and travel stories openly and use pictures and videos to validate what you are saying. Answer each question your readers ask with relevant advice.
Writing and self-publishing an eBook, advertising, and creating an online course are all not just additional income streams, but successful ways to grow your brand, reach more people, and get known in your niche.