Fine, I’m a creative and sensitive INFJ who DESPISES this kind of stuff, but because I think it might help people like me, I really do need to write a little bit about the boring, mundane, business end of blogging.
A discussion came up under my last article, “Bloggers are Narcs!” about how to go about running ads on your blog. It’s a good question, because I think many of us who are blogaholics would love to be able to write and blog for a living, and running ads on your website is obviously a good start toward a goal like that.
I decided it might be helpful to some bloggers who want to make money from their site to turn that discussion into a whole blog post.
Three things to ask yourself before you run ads.
1. Are you serious about blogging? Do you post at least once a day? If you don’t, you probably aren’t generating enough traffic to qualify to run ads (which I’ll explain in a minute)
2. How do you feel about the look of having ads on your blog? If you don’t care about earning anything and only blog casually and you hate the disruption the ad would cause the pristine look of your blog, then running ads probably isn’t something you want to do.
3. Are you morally opposed to running ads on a personal blog, especially if it’s about a serious issue? That’s something to think about. This was an issue for me for awhile, even though I desperately needed any income this blog could provide for me. At first I thought running ads on a site like this would be a little gauche if not insensitive, but I decided to go for it when I found out it would only be one small ad per page and not that intrusive to the subject matter.
If you decide to run ads.
You have to sign up for the WordAds program WordPress offers. In order to do this, you must have your own domain name– that means without the “wordpress.com” in the URL.
I paid for my own domain name (you do it through WordPress and I think it’s only $18 a year) because I decided I wanted to run ads and make some money from doing this. The ads don’t clutter up the site or cheapen its look or mood, thank goodness. I would hate that.
Once you submit your application for WordAds, it has to be approved–which means you are required to have a certain amount of traffic (I don’t know how they determine how much is enough “traffic”). Then if they approve you, you get an invitation by email and it gives you all the instructions for setting up WordAds on your site (no, you do not get to choose which ads are run). You also have to set up a Paypal account to collect your earnings.
You also have to tell WordPress (via the dashboard) whether you want the ads visible to WP members who are signed into WP, or only to visitors who do not have a WordPress account. I opted for everyone to see them (you can make more that way). You are not paid by clicks, but by impression. According to the WordAds site,
[…]the more visits you get, and the more each visitor uses your site, the more you will earn. What you earn can vary greatly per blog, depending on the following factors:
–The amount of traffic.
–Where the majority of the traffic is coming from. (North American ad placements currently pay-out at a much greater level than international ads.)
–How many are using ad blockers.
–The actual ads that are displayed.
I have noticed that since January, the type of ads I see on this blog have changed–at first they were just little print ads that looked like headlines in the National Enquirer with titles like, “The Miracle Food that Can make Your Eyes Change Color!” Now sometimes I see sleek looking videos for big companies like Verizon, H&R Block, and car manufacturers. There’s a lot of local ads too, that would be different for you than it would for me. But lately I have been seeing fewer of the cheap looking print ads and more of the big ads, and i did earn more in March than I did in January and Feb.
For now I have to keep my day job.
So far my account has a whopping $46.85 in it (that’s over 3 months time–I started running the ads in January), and I can’t cash it in until it reaches $100. I’m hoping down the line to make more. But rest assured my purpose for this blog is not to make money, but to help myself and others. And because I love to write. Any money earned is just an added bonus and worth the the little bit of effort.
Here is the link for WordAds if you want to get started: https://wordads.co/