Have you been afraid to monetize your website or blog because you’re worried that if you do, you could drive away your subscribers and reduce your traffic? Put your fears aside! The truth is that you can easily monetize your website in a user-friendly way that won’t send your subscribers running for the hills.
That’s right; it’s possible to have your proverbial cake and eat it, too. There are plenty of ways for you to cash-in on good money-making opportunities for your site and also keep your subscribers happy. In fact, if you happen to find the monetization strategy that works best for your site, you’ll even draw in new subs!
With that in mind, here are some ways that you can work toward achieving this goal, starting with the three essential basics – SEO, quality content and website traffic analytics – all of which are vital to ensure successful monetization and a strong subscriber base.
How to Monetize Your Website Without Losing Subscribers
Create a Strong Monetization Foundation
1. Search Engine Optimization
You might be wondering what SEO has to do with monetization. Well, if you want consumers to actually find your website in the first place, so they can help you make money, you need to exist in search engines like Google. Effective SEO strategies can help you enhance your site’s visibility. For instance, by identifying keywords that generate high traffic but that have little competition, you have a greater chance of ranking higher in search results.
2. Quality Content
Keep your new and repeat visitors interested. The longer they stay on your site, the greater your chances of getting some cash out of it. Engage your visitors. Make the headlines of your content catchy and interesting. Include images and videos when possible. If you want them to find value in your site, you need to show them it exists. When your content appeals to your readers, you can boost the likelihood of inbound links as well as reader sharing.
3. Pay Attention to What Your Website Traffic is Telling You
Before you start employing different strategies to monetize, you need to quantify your website’s traffic to gain an overall idea of what type of advertising might work best for monetization. For instance, if your website attracts a significant amount of traffic or a specific demographic, you might find one ad monetization method works better than another. The same is true if, on the other hand, your site has lower traffic and attracts more generic demographics. There are programs that can help you quantify and analyze your traffic. Two good free options are Google Analytics and Quantcast.
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Monetization Strategies that Won’t Drive Away Subs
Now that you’ve got the foundation for effective monetization covered, your next step is to apply monetization methods that won’t cost you the subscribers you’ve gained. Here are some great ones:
4. Google AdSense
This is one of the most basic ways to make money on your site, and also the most popular and widely used PPC (pay per click) ad strategy. Google Adsense is free and automatically generates contextual ads in the form of text or images, based on the content of your page. You’re paid when someone clicks on the ad. You could be paid anywhere from $0.50 to $5.00 per click. Plus, if your content targets the highly-valued keywords advertisers bid on, this will earn you more money per click. This could lead to hundreds to thousands of dollar per month if you’re lucky.
Why you won’t lose subscribers: This is an ideal monetization method worth having because it’s easy to integrate and can make you money from new subscribers as your traffic grows without irritating the subs you already have.
5. Sell Ad Space
Other types of ads you can use on your site are CPM (cost per thousand) and CPI (cost per impression) Ads. Directly selling ad space can be particularly beneficial to websites that receive a lot of traffic (e.g. 200,000 or more per month) or that target specific demographics. The reason is you’re typically paid very little for each impression, so you might not make much if you have low traffic. Still, it’s worth looking into.
Why you won’t lose subscribers: Your site’s visitors don’t have to do anything with these ads for you to be paid. You simply serve the ad to them. You’ll keep your subscribers as long as the placement of these ads doesn’t disrupt the UX.
6. Sell Digital Goods/Services
Make money by selling your own digital products. You can make the most money on a per sale basis with these products. What types of products/services can you sell? Music, video, eBooks, and apps are all great examples. You can make whatever product you decide to sell exclusively available through your site or you can make it available in other online stores, like Amazon, eBay or, if it’s an app, mobile apps stores. Of course, there can be a lot of hidden costs in creating these products, selling and marketing them. Therefore, it’s a good idea to use services that can help you. For instance, if your web monetization goals are via an app, which is very common these days, a company like Appnext can help you boost your sales and generate more income for you.
Why you won’t lose subscribers – When you know who is visiting your site and what they want, you’ll be able to provide them with the products and tools that will most appeal to them and that they are most likely to buy. Not every sub is looking for something for free. Most of them want something of value and they’ll be willing to pay for it if it’s marketed and presented well.
7. Affiliate Marketing
There are thousands of companies and dozens of networks that offer free affiliate programs. With affiliate marketing, you receive a commission from an online retailer by sending traffic to their site or from the traffic you sent generating sales from your referral. This is an ideal way to promote some of the more physical products you might mention on your site. Adding affiliate links to relevant products mentioned in your content can result in interested or curious users clicking these links and potentially earning you some pay. A great example of this monetization method is the Amazon Associates program. There is a massive range of diverse products you can link to on Amazon. Other great examples include Commission Junction and ShareASale.
Why you won’t lose subscribers: When you’ve established yourself as someone your subscribers like and trust, endorsing and promoting a product you like and would recommend on your site and your email list will resonate with your site visitors and subscribers. As a result, they will be more likely to click the link and potentially make a purchase, earning you a commission and keeping your subscribers happy and interested.
Keep in Mind, Diversification is Important
Just like any strategy involving money, remember that it’s better to utilize more than one website monetization method. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. Try combining the different methods mentioned above to find out what works best for your site, so you can make the most of your earning potential. As long as you are producing high-quality, relevant and engaging content for your subscribers, don’t be afraid to test out different money-making strategies. Remain relatable, maintain your integrity and always deliver value. Your subscribers will stick around.
- How to Monetize Your Website Without Losing Subscribers - April 4, 2018