Should You Monetize Your Blog From Day 1?

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Blog monetization has always been one of the favorite topics among new and experienced bloggers alike.

At some point, every blogger starts thinking about turning their hard work into some dollars and finally getting something back from all the long evenings and hours of meticulous writing and editing.

And rightfully so. Everyone deserves to see some return on their investment, even if what they're doing originally started as a passion project.

But here's the big question, should you try to monetize your blog from day one, or maybe it's better to wait a while until you've built an audience that cares about what you have to say?

Here are the answers you've been looking for, along with some pros and cons of blog monetization.

The big answer

So … should you monetize?

I won't keep you hanging. If you desire a simple, one-word answer then here goes. Yes, you should (at least attempt) to monetize your blog from day one.

Now let's explain exactly why this is the right decision to take.

Blogs that don't make money eventually fail

IBM-Notes-User-ExperienceThis is the unfortunate truth. Passion and willpower are finite resources (that's actually been proven). So no matter what project we're pursuing, eventually we're going to run out of our inner fuel.

For some people, this happens very quickly. For others, it can take even a couple of years, but at some point, everyone faces the “I can't do this anymore” thoughts.

Now, if you're actually making money, and especially if it adds up to a big part of your livelihood, then you have one more very good reason to overcome the obstacles, regain your motivation, and stay being a blogger for the long haul.

However, your monetization road will probably have a rough start, just like it did for most of us.

The downside – you probably won't make much at first

Let's face it, if you're launching a new blog today, with some monetization methods in place right from the get-go, you won't make much by tomorrow evening, or even by the end of the month for that matter.

So the downside is that you can get discouraged pretty easily, which can have an impact on your future actions. Seeing your AdSense stats for the first time can make you feel very unimpressed.

Therefore, let me just say that earning next to nothing on day one is just a mandatory part of the process. Over time, things add up. This is a game of patience.

Get your audience used to monetization

Bloggers who introduce monetization on their sites later down the road usually have to face some backlash. How big the backlash is depends on the kind of audience the blogger serves, the niche, and loads of other factors.

Nevertheless, some part of the audience will inevitably be very unhappy about seeing ads or other forms of monetization. It's just the nature of things.

With that in mind, if you have some monetization elements right from day one (for example, even simple AdSense ads) then your audience gets introduced to the concept of you attempting to make money from your site very early on.

This works in your favor because it reduces any future backlash you might experience when launching something bigger, like your own product for example.

You gain experience on a small scale

Blog monetization is a tough task to get it right. Making a noticeable income with a website is certainly much more difficult than some people try to convince us it is.

Finding the optimal solution really takes time, and unfortunately, there's no best monetization technique that works on all blogs. For some, it's AdSense. For others, it's affiliate marketing. But there's also selling products, consultations, and so on.

Now here's the kicker. You will never know which method has the potential to be the most effective for you until you gain some experience on a smaller scale and try a number of different approaches.

The knowledge you gain running your first ads, or promoting your first affiliate products will pay off big time later down the road.

So start early, find out what monetization method works for your site, and then increase the scale of your operations as you grow your audience. And speaking of audience…

You get better at building your audience

When running a personal blog as a hobby, you have very little incentive to grow it, or to get some more eyeballs on it in any other way. But once you start monetizing, building your audience suddenly becomes very important.

It's no secret that in the blogging niche, bigger audience equals bigger payday. So bloggers do everything they can to master new and trendy techniques of getting more email subscribers, more Twitter followers, more Facebook fans, and what nots.

All this promotes growth and forces us to constantly better ourselves on many aspects of the online publishing world.

And what about the people who are the audience? Aren't they being taken advantage of? Well, no, they win too because they get access to the type of content that they desire and can learn from.

You learn how to handle the dark side of blog monetization

At some point on your blog monetization path, you will stumble upon some dishonest advertisers, obvious SEO professionals, link buyers and sellers, people starting their emails with “To whom it may concern,” etc.

Separating the wheat from the chaff and finding quality business partners takes some practice. However, if you do understand the rules of blog monetization, dealing with the low-quality contacts becomes so much easier.

That's because you know what your time is worth, you know what your blog is worth, and you know what amount of money can be made with some Method X.

For instance, if you've never attempted to monetize your site through ads, then how would you know if the $50/month that someone is offering you for a banner is a good deal or not?

You start noticing new opportunities

When you're trying to monetize your blog, apart from the obvious paths of advertising or promoting someone else's products, you also start noticing various new opportunities coming your way.

This is all due to your business mindset and the fact that you're training yourself to always be on the lookout for new ways to grow your bottom line.

From my own experience, it's because I started monetizing my blog relatively early that I was able to shift towards freelancing and ultimately make a career out of it.

It was a good couple of years ago, but I still remember jotting down a monetization plan that included all sorts of passive income elements, when I realized that I can also focus on making money actively and use my blog as a portfolio.

But freelancing is only one of the possible paths. As a blogger with monetization on your mind, you will naturally shift towards various joint projects, partnerships, building your own products, and so on.

Besides, these days, going after these opportunities is relatively simple (do not mistake with easy), due to some awesome tools and resources available out there.

To start looking for some blogging jobs, you can hop over to the ProBlogger Job Board. It's been around for years, and it lists hundreds of positions at any given moment.

Looking for a way to reach out to prospective clients and send out proposals? Check out Bidsketch and their wide range of proposal resources. I've been working with those guys for a while, and they really know their craft when it comes to sealing client deals. Not to mention their great proposal tool.

Need a great CRM to handle your clients later on? How about Nutshell CRM? It's affordable and offers all the features you'd need (including email integration, client profiles, tasks, etc.).

So … are you in?

Okay, I hope I've managed to convince you that blog monetization is something you should be doing from day one. Even if you make next to nothing, the experience will still be worthwhile, and the knowledge you gain through testing different methods is invaluable.

Like they say, the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, the second best is now. So start monetizing your blog as soon as today.

Karol K

Karol K. (@carlosinho) is a blogger and writer, published author, and a team member at Bidsketch (proposal software) - bringing you the best client proposals that can be designed, managed and sent out in minutes. Whenever he's not working, Karol likes to spend time training Capoeira and enjoying life.

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30 thoughts on “Should You Monetize Your Blog From Day 1?”

  1. Very interesting write-up!!
    Not being too well-versed with the monetization aspect of it when I first started blogging, I did not put up ANY ads on my blog for nearly 4 months.
    And that was a period when I was getting a traffic most bloggers can only dream of- more than 2k unique visitors a day!
    Not only does monetization teach you so much, as mentioned by Karol K above, there is some, plain logic. WHY waste the traffic to your blog?
    People come to your blog because they find something interesting, valuable or relevant there. They click on the ads only when they WANT to, not because they HAVE to.
    If they are getting useful information and like the way you put your point across, they will keep visiting you whether you’ve put up ads over there or not.
    So, WHY NOT??
    Not monetizing or not even trying to do that defies all logic. As far as the profitability or earnings are concerned, it is obvious that one will have to be content with a trickle initially before the floodgates are forced open!!
    Hope you agree.
    Good day ahead. πŸ™‚

    • Very well said, Ambika. By displaying ads on your site, you’re not forcing anyone to click them. More than that, any sort of encouragement is against the rules and can get your account banned.

  2. Hello Karol,
    I don’t see it as a necessity to monetize a blog from the first day. It is always advisable to focus all attention in building a good audience before monetization. Anyways, thanks for sharing and do have a weekend.

  3. I agree with this post one should monetize his blog from day one.

    But as far as AdSense is concerned, you will get approval once your blog is several months old.
    Implementing advertising and affiliate links on a new blog, may negatively impact the performance and rankings of the new blog.

    Apart from AdSense and affiliate links, it’s a great idea to monetise a blog from day one.

    What you think?

    • I would say that the age of the site doesn’t matter that much as long as you have some content there.

      Getting a blank site approved for AdSense is not possible. But if you have 10-20 pages of good content, it shouldn’t be a problem even if the site is only a couple of weeks old.

  4. I also think, the monetization of a blog should start from Day 1 but what I think first is to build a blog with a lot of good and useful content for readers and then enter up in the field of monetization.

    But to know whether the blog will help making money, monetization should start from Day 1.
    Here are my two different thoughts, I can’t stick on one.

    I must say, this is a really good post.

    • I’d say that the problem with waiting for the right time to start monetizing (like waiting until you have X people visiting a day, or until you have X posts) is that the right time never comes. Taking action from day one is often the easier and better path.

  5. You are right. Monetizing your blog is something very important for this provides you a fuel to keep going on with your dream/passion.
    And yep.. If one hasn’t started yet.. One should start now!
    Freelancing is a really good way to make some money. In fact, I never bothered to look for more options once I got into freelancing. But I think .. One should look for new options as well. It would be an add-on.

    • Freelancing can really consume most of your day, so I agree that it’s often difficult to get into any other form of monetization once you start freelancing.

  6. Hi Karol,
    Awesome post which contains very useful information regarding monetizing blog. No doubt all the points are informative, inspirational and instructive. Thanks for sharing such an excellent post.

  7. Hello Karol,

    Great write up indeed!

    You delivered some good tips regarding why we should monetize our blog from Day 1. But I think we shouldn’t do so..

    According to my experience when I started I always thought on monetizing it and it was a big sin for my blog. Being a newbie I worked hard to get adsense approved not to improve the quality of content LOL.

    When I got adsense approved, I just earned in cents and I removed it. So I must first we should focus on enhancing user engagement and increasing traffic.. Then comes the money!

    Thanks!
    ~Nikhil Ganotra

    • It’s like I said, you won’t make much right away, but you gain experience, which is worth more than any initial earnings.

  8. You are right we should monetize our blog from day 1 and I am convinced with the reasons you have gave above,

    But I am a bit confuse because from day 1 our blog will have no authority, traffic, and rankings, so monetizing networks are not going to approve our blog, any tips for that?

    Waiting for your reply πŸ™‚

    • You don’t need much to be approved by AdSense. Having “some” starter content on your site will be enough.

  9. Hey Karol,

    Nice to see on blogging cage, I really appreciate your post. First of all coming to the point blogging should not be for income, you should get income for money, I feel affiliate is the best to startup on new blogs, otherwise if you can pitch a good mail then you can hit a jackpot with them πŸ™‚

    Thanks for the great tips.

    • Thanks!

      Affiliate marketing sure has its advantages, but some niches simply don’t have quality affiliate products. Also, in other more traditional niches there are only physical products available, and those don’t pay that well compared to software.

  10. Hi Karol,

    A very well explained article. Even I feel that early monetization is beneficial for any blog. This way we learn how to monetize our blog and explore various options available, to know the which option is best to us. It also helps us to gain experience and this benefits us in future to decide which monetisation methods to use when we have more traffic.

    Have a Nice Day.

    • Thanks! Gaining experience is indeed one of the main advantages of early monetization. The money itself may not be that impressive, but the experience is something that will pay off for years.

  11. Strongly Disagree, If you monetize from day-1, you’re going ruin your blog authority, really!
    I think, one should start monetization after a month.

  12. Hi Karol,

    A very well explained article. Monetization is essential for every blog. This way we learn how to monetize our blog and explore various options available, to know the which option is best to us. It also helps us to gain experience and this benefits us in future to decide which monetization methods to use when we have more traffic.

    Great Work bro…Thanks for sharing!

  13. It is a very good article with detailed information. I too started a blog recently and but not monetizing it. But after going through this article I understood the importance of monetization in beginning. Thanks for the information for the starters like me. I hope that it will help me to gain more traffic in future.

  14. Your article is interesting and encouraging especially for those who are starting out. Monetization is a critical aspect of blogging. And it is as important as blogging itself.I held different opinion concerning when to optimize a blog. Monetization from day one of blogging is like creating product for non-existing marketing. It is much better to concentrate on building loyal audience and gaining consistent traffic before monetizing a blog.Even though other side of marketing might be applied. If you already have a product in place, you might start monetization earlier (not even in the first day) to create market for the products or service.The latter might be applied for existing offline business or service owners who want to benefit from internet markets.

    • Even though I understand what you’re referring to, I still think that monetization can be done from day one. Introducing simple monetization elements won’t cost you much effort, so you can still work on building your audience at the same time and with the same dedication.

  15. Absolutely right! We all should start monetizing our blogs from day one as we started it to get something big, for that we have to work a bit hard from day one. Very well explanation, indeed a helpful one!

  16. Writing good stuffs from the day 1 is all we should take care of. We ultimately get results if we publish good contents on our site. However to start monetize a blog from day 1 is the best deal we can ever do, it keeps us enthusiast about our blog and to help us boosting up more with that!

  17. Karol, Your article is really very useful for me and other novice bloggers, I am also a novice blogger and I am daily learning from this blog.

  18. I do not agree with monetizing from day 1. Why not it is pretty simple to know if you understand human psychology a bit. You may come to know of the reason after reading my latest post for the beginners.

  19. Really interesting and motivating post as I was discourage from my blogging because after 6 months of blogging I still unable to make expected income with my blog. Reading this realize me that what is the reason behind my failure.
    For sure blog must be monetize from day first.
    Thanks Karol

  20. Very good article with many helpful tips. I believe it’s hard enough to build an audience for a new blog with so many blogs emerging every day without monetizing it from day one, but you have some good arguments too.

  21. Effective post for me. I have tried monetizing my blog from the begning. But now I must do it after achieving the minimum goal. Thank you Karol.

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