Before you started your lifestyle blog, chances are you already thought of monetization.
There’s no going around it — blogging is a lot of work.
It’s only fair to think about how you’ll get rewarded for all your efforts.
Fortunately, you don’t have to look elsewhere for tips on how to make money with a lifestyle blog. I have all the information you need right here.
Take a look.
Ways To Make Money with a Lifestyle Blog
1. Earning passive income via affiliate marketing
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.
Affiliate marketing is the best, most accessible way to earn passive income from your blog.
Here are some of the reasons why I think so:
- Receive free products — A handful of affiliate marketing programs out there send free products to their members. This is useful if you want to write review posts that could convert interested readers into paying customers.
- Promotional materials included — In addition to free products, most affiliate marketing programs also provide members with free banners, text ads, and other creatives. These materials make it easier to get your audience’s attention and build buyer confidence.
- No need to develop your own product — Some of the top lifestyle blogs that make money develop and sell their own products for profit. You may get to that point in the future, but for now, affiliate marketing is here for your monetization needs.
- Performance is the key — The more traffic you convert into customers, the more money you’ll make. Take note that this income is passive, which means you could make money in your sleep.
Most importantly, making money from a blog through affiliate marketing isn’t complicated.
How affiliate marketing works
Affiliate marketing isn’t rocket science.
You look for affiliate programs in your niche, promote their products on your site, and earn commissions for every sale.
Yes — it’s that simple.
Most affiliate programs also don’t require some form of payment from would-be members. The only tricky part is qualifying for an affiliate program, which usually involves requirements like:
- Having a certain amount of quality, relevant content
- Generating recurring monthly traffic
- Not having content that violates intellectual property laws
- Not having content that promotes alcohol, gambling, or other adult topics
In a nutshell, you must work on getting your niche blog off the ground first before you try affiliate marketing.
Think your site isn’t ready yet for an affiliate marketing campaign?
I suggest you look at these 17 blog promotion strategies to get your web traffic going.
When you’re ready, it’s time to look for affiliate marketing programs that match your lifestyle blog’s content.
2. Display advertising
Just like affiliate marketing, display advertising will also help you earn passive income with your lifestyle blog.
How display advertising works
Display advertising is the practice of showing ads on your website provided by another company or a “display network.” These ads can be in the form of banners, images, text, or video overlays.
Ad campaigns follow different types of pricing models that determine how publishers, such as yourself, get paid:
- Cost Per Mille — With the CPM pricing model, publishers receive a flat fee for every 1,000 impressions or ad views. This is a great way to consistently earn money if you run a high-traffic blog.
- Cost Per Action — The CPA pricing model rewards publishers whenever visitors complete the advertiser’s desired action through your ad placement. While this model has high potential payouts, more care is needed when choosing an advertising partner.
- Pay Per Click — PPC advertising is a popular pricing model that pays publishers for every click they generate. Unlike the CPA model, conversions aren’t needed for PPC payouts — what matters is that ads get clicks.
Google AdSense is widely regarded as the best advertising network for content creators around the world.
Apart from the range of advertiser categories available, AdSense also provides publishers with tools to help optimize their ad campaigns.
If you’re unsure if AdSense is the perfect fit for your blog, take a look at advertising network alternatives here.
3. Selling advertising spaces
The concept behind display advertising and selling advertising spaces on your website are fundamentally similar.
In both strategies, you show ads on your website in exchange for cash. The only difference is the way you connect and work with brands that advertise on your site.
How selling advertising spaces works
By selling advertising spaces directly, you forego the convenience of being part of a display network. You reach out to relevant brands, substantiate the specifics of your advertising partnership, and earn money based on your terms.
If your blog gets a decent amount of monthly traffic, you can also publish an “Advertise with Us” page. This should publicly announce that you’re selling advertising spaces as well as divulge the details of your proposal.
To give you an idea, check out this page from Preparedness Pro — a blog about preparedness and self-sufficient living.
As you can see, the earning potential is highly flexible when selling ad spaces directly. It all depends on both the quantity and quality of traffic you draw to your website.
You’re also in control of the types of ads you wish to use as well as where to show them.
The Advanced Ads plugin is perfect for this if you’re using WordPress. It allows you to easily create and manage your ads — be it an image, rich content, or display network ad.
Advanced Ads also lets you manually set special conditions that determine where your ads can be seen and by whom.
You don’t have to write a single line of code for either. The plugin streamlines this process using the visual interface.
When it comes to where ads appear, Advanced Ads allows you to insert advertising spaces into any widget area. Plus, you can use the dedicated block for the Gutenberg editor to add advertising spaces to any post or page.
There’s a lot more to what Advanced Ads can do, but that warrants a post of its own. Since the plugin is free, I encourage you to try the plugin out for yourself to learn more.
Now — back to writing your “Advertise with Us” page.
In Preparedness Pro’s case, they also expressly mentioned that they’re open to publishing featured product articles. This is a type of sponsored post, which fits another monetization strategy for bloggers.
As a lifestyle blogger, your content development ability should still be your number one asset.
There are brands out there that can use your help in reaching and connecting with their target audience. And if your content skills are good enough, you should be able to make a killing with sponsored posts.
How writing sponsored posts works
In the blogging landscape, a sponsored post can be anything from a product review to an Instagram post. Some brands are also willing to provide sponsored content themselves — you just have to publish it to your blog readers.
This depends on the kind of message the brand wants your audience to hear. It also depends on your own blog’s audience base.
For example, if your Instagram account has a huge following, more brands will be enticed to tap into it.
Just like when selling advertising spaces, you can reach out to other brands for sponsored post opportunities.
This process can be a lot faster if you’re a social media influencer. Platforms like Ifluenz and SponsoredTweets will make you more discoverable to brands that need influencer connections they can leverage.
Lifestyle bloggers can also refer to websites like PayPerPost to look for content sponsorship opportunities.
Similar to Ifluenz and SponsoredTweets, PayPerPost is also a platform designed to connect content creators and marketers.
Of course, relying on these platforms is completely optional.
If you’re already getting a steady stream of traffic, you can also mention sponsored post opportunities on your website. After all, brands who are willing to engage in content sponsorships are actively looking for websites that fit their bill.
Take a look at Ape to Gentleman’s “Advertise” page to get an idea.
Of course, you can be as detailed as you want with your content sponsorship proposal to brands.
Mention information such as the types of sponsored posts you’re willing to publish and whom should they contact. Doing so will eliminate friction in the communication process — allowing you to close sponsorship deals faster.
5. Build a WooCommerce dropshipping store
I know — a lot of new bloggers get intimidated when they hear the word “eCommerce.”
After all, building an eCommerce brand from scratch takes weeks — if not months — of work.
The good news is, eCommerce’s barrier to entry can be significantly lowered by dropshipping wholesalers.
How dropshipping works
In simple terms, dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where you don’t need to physically possess your stock. Whenever you close a sale, the wholesaler or manufacturer will handle the product’s shipping.
This greatly reduces the overhead costs of stepping into the eCommerce industry.
WooCommerce can provide you with everything you need to start your own dropshipping store with minimal risks. It is a comprehensive e-commerce platform that lets you manage every aspect of your online selling business straight from WordPress.
To integrate WooCommerce with WordPress, you just need to install, activate, and configure the free plugin.
Everything, from managing your products to creating coupons, can be done through WooCommerce. You can also use the WooCommerce Dropshipping extension to make your dropshipping endeavor a walk in the park.
The extension works by automating notifications to suppliers whenever a purchase of their product is confirmed in your store. Suppliers are then granted limited access to your WordPress website, allowing them to view pertinent details about the order.
You can also quickly import supplier information and inventory to build your entire dropshipping ecosystem within minutes.
Sure enough, the WooCommerce interface on your WordPress dashboard will take some getting used to. But it’s nothing a trip to WooCommerce Docs can’t fix.
Also, remember that dropshipping isn’t a magic bullet that will single-handedly carry your lifestyle blog to success.
While it’s indeed an easy way to get your feet wet in eCommerce, it does have some downsides:
- Lower profits — Suppliers don’t handle the fulfillment of orders for free. Expect your margins to be noticeably lower than if you are to handle fulfillment yourself.
- High competition — Due to the accessibility of dropshipping, it’s tough to find low-competition products. Your only ace in the hole is to focus on generating quality traffic through high-performance content marketing.
- Frequent stock shortages — Unless you find an extremely rare product to sell, chances are you’re sharing dropshipping suppliers with other website owners. This, in addition to no inventory control, could result in orders with no products left to deliver.
- Customer service issues — Dropshipping can also lead to unhappy customers even if your supplier still has products to ship out. Remember, things like package tracking and arrival times are out of your control.
6. Develop and sell your own products or services
In the lifestyle blogging sphere, there is an upper-echelon reserved for brands who succeed in selling their own products.
It doesn’t matter if you intend to create your own line of beauty products, fashion items, eBooks, or online courses. By creating something and offering it to the world, you can say that you’ve made your dent in the industry.
How selling your own products or services works
This particular blog monetization strategy is rather self-explanatory.
You build your own product or service, sell it to your audience, and turn in a profit.
Let’s explore some of the things you can offer your audience as a lifestyle blogger:
- eBooks — For certain lifestyle blog niches, like self-improvement, career, and dating, a simple info product like an eBook could work. While you do the writing, you can tap into freelance networks like Upwork for jobs like eBook design and formatting.
- Online course — If you feel like an eBook isn’t enough for the education you want to provide, consider building online courses. Platforms like Podia can help build the skeleton of your course while you focus on content creation.
- Brand products — Some fashion bloggers at the top of their game also have their own clothing lines. With resourcefulness and creativity, lifestyle bloggers in the travel and food niches can do the same.
- Lightroom presets — Lifestyle bloggers who are passionate and skilled in photo editing may also offer lightroom presets for sale. This lucrative strategy is often done by photography bloggers who showcase their work as proof of quality on their websites.
- Consultation services — Finally, lifestyle coaches can make money by offering their consultation services to the online populace. Fee structures may vary between daily rates, hourly billing, project-based, and results-based.
Developing and selling your own product or service is a massive task. This, however, is a surefire path to cementing your authority.
You can draw inspiration from the best lifestyle bloggers who already make it happen. Just look for blogs with an “online store page” or “digital products” in their monetization strategies.
7. Brand collaborations
As a lifestyle blogger, your authority is undeniably your most important asset.
We already discussed how other brands can utilize it through sponsored posts. Other brands, however, may be interested in taking a step further with more elaborate collaborative projects.
How collaborative projects work
In a way, some brand collaborations like press trips produce results akin to sponsored posts.
Organized hotel or restaurant visits, for example, end up in posts that review the establishment or highlight the blogger’s experience. But unlike your average sponsored post, this collaboration takes much more planning, effort, and resources to execute.
Collaborative projects are also usually more rewarding for the participating blogger. And I’m not just talking about cash payment.
In collaborative projects, a lifestyle blogger also usually receives various free stuff. Free accommodation and travel expenses, for example, are common in press trips.
Another specific type of collaboration may exist between fashion bloggers and brands.
The original ideas of a fashion blogger, for example, can be turned to a clothing line by a brand-name company. Collaborative products may also be online courses, perfumes, books, and so on.
Such collaborations, however, are understandably rare. Still, it only shows that the sky’s the limit if you’re a dedicated blogger.
If you’re looking for simpler brand collaboration ideas, you may look at:
- Social media coverage
To look for collaborative opportunities, you can utilize blogging networks and influencer marketing platforms. Alternatively, you can launch Google and type keywords like “fashion blogger collaboration” to manually search for opportunities posted by brands.
You can also follow the approach of bloggers like Hannah Dtrick that posted about brand collaboration opportunities on her blog.
Employing monetization strategies can be the most exciting phase of your lifestyle blogging career.
It can also easily become the most stressful if you don’t know what you’re doing.
I’m confident that the list above will help you effectively monetize your blog. If you have any suggestions or questions, feel free to leave a comment below.