So, you started a business and want to be a reliable source for prospective customers. There’s just one problem. You’re new to the game, and you know it takes time to establish business credibility.
While there are several pieces of information on the internet about establishing credibility, you aren’t finding what you need. You keep hearing people say things like “make content consistent” and “showcase your achievements,” but that isn’t helping. As a self-starter, you need tools and resources to establish business credibility so you can take actionable steps and achieve tangible results.
But before we dive into detail on the steps you can take to establish credibility for your business, let’s first answer an important question.
Why is credibility important in business?
To understand why business credibility is important, we need to consider how it benefits an organization. Financial assurance, quality employees, and increased customer lifetime value are just a few benefits of business credibility. Others include employee retention, long-term customer acquisition, and new development opportunities.
You see, business credibility starts long before the first customer even makes a purchase. It begins when a company is forming. Leadership credibility can affect loan approvals and investor networking opportunities. Meanwhile, business credibility affects employee acquisition, customer loyalty, and trustworthiness in product offerings.
People associate reputation with credibility. Therefore, you must set your organization up for success and establish credibility from day one.
How to build business credibility: 7 steps for startups
Building a business from the ground up can be difficult. There’s paperwork, regulations, and strategies to hash out. Things can feel overwhelming when you layer credibility to this part of the startup process. Overwhelming, however, doesn’t have to be your new normal. Consider the following ways to establish credibility from day one:
1. Have a professional design your website
Nearly half of consumers (46.1%) admit to judging a website’s credibility solely on its design. When it comes to this statistic, the saying that perception is reality has never been more true. The more professional your website is, the greater an audience trusts your brand to fulfill their needs.
Badly designed websites can be confusing and frustrating to navigate. Set design parameters to help organize and clarify the message your organization is trying to get across. The more consistent your website is, the easier it is for someone to understand and trust your content.
2. Get in the Google reviews game
Odds are, you’ve traveled to a new location and searched for a place to eat. More than likely, you looked up the restaurant on the internet and used Google reviews to help make your decision. This same practice applies to most individuals and businesses across various industries.
Nearly 70% of online shoppers will read between one and six customer reviews before making a purchase, and 59% of consumers use Google to find customer reviews, making it the most popular review channel. People trust online reviews as much as a recommendation from a friend. Therefore, these digital references are a sure way to help establish credibility with your prospective customers.
You might be thinking it will take you a long time to get a reputable number of Google reviews for your business. While this could be the case for some startups, it doesn’t have to be your story. For example, I once worked with a dentist who only had 70 reviews when I started helping his practice as a marketing director; six months later, he had 370 reviews.
So, what did we do? We utilized review tools to automate our Google review process. We also incentivized team members when we hit a certain number of reviews and when a customer mentioned their name in a review. This collaboration made everyone excited to ask for a review and increased our credibility with customers.
3. Join the Forbes Business Council
The Forbes Business Council is an organization designed specifically for small and medium-sized business owners and executives. This group is associated with Forbes, which reaches more than 150 million people, so just being a member can improve your business status and reputation. In addition, members can participate in expert panels and write articles, which enhances their reputation as thought leaders.
It’s important to know that Forbes Business Council is an application-only program. The good news is that because the program is selective, your authority status gets elevated that much more once you’re chosen.
4. Create impactful thought leadership content
In a survey of over 1,200 businesses leaders, only 18% said the thought leadership content they consumed was excellent or good—or 82% of content isn’t hitting the mark. This is why impactful thought leadership content can set your organization apart from others when you’re just starting.
But, what is effective thought leadership content, and how do you create that initially? Here are a few tips to help you create content that establishes credibility and resonates with your audience:
- Consider how your content will solve a need for prospective customers.
- Think about the emotions you want your audience to feel as a result of your information.
- Plan out the actions you want someone to take after consuming your content.
- Layer your own research or data into content pieces you create.
- Gather interview statements or client testimonials to leverage across digital channels.
- Discuss ideas competitors aren’t already talking about on podcasts, social platforms, and other content formats.
5. Participate in C-Suite chats
C-Suite chats are an effective way to establish yourself and your organization in its respective industry. Here, executive leaders can discuss helpful insights, data, tips, and tricks related to their businesses. People view executives and leaders as experts in their field and, as a result, often pay more attention to the conversations.
C-Suite chats have been around for a while and mainly took place at Rotary Clubs and with other professional groups. But thanks to the digital era, here are some trending C-Suite formats you can leverage in your business:
Examples of business credibility
- Company blog—Your company blog is a great place to post interview-style conversations with company executives. You can also share information from partners and other high-level leaders you collaborate with in your industry.
- Clubhouse rooms—Clubhouse is a great way to reach a large audience via audio education. Small business leaders can create rooms related to their business, and others have the opportunity to listen and learn. Executives like Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg have shared discussions on the platform, increasing user engagement.
- Instagram Live—Through Instagram, executives can host live Q&A sessions on their business pages with existing customers and prospective clients. Going live establishes credibility between a brand and its audience and makes your startup more relatable.
- YouTube collaborations— YouTube discussions between like-minded business owners help clarify company positions, establish credibility, and educate audiences.
6. Host a business podcast
Business podcasts are another great way to boost credibility. More than half of U.S. consumers (57%) have listened to a podcast, and 41% of Americans listen to podcasts at least once a month. Educational podcasts are the second-most popular podcast genre.
Think of business podcasts as chapters in a book and listeners as fans. Audiences listen to audio snippets to learn. Therefore, they enable you to share knowledge with a target audience, establishing brand credibility by increasing your startup’s digital footprint.
On a podcast, you can interview business partners and customers, share tips, and do many other things to increase your credibility. Popular shows like Planet Money and the Mind Your Business Podcast have used similar methods to generate millions of listeners and establish themselves in the startup landscape. The key is to generate authenticity in the conversations you create.
7. Give a TEDx Talk
TEDx events include live speakers and recorded TED Talks, and are organized independently under a free license granted by TED. More than 3,000 TEDx events are held annually.
Some of the most-watched TEDx Talks have over 11 million views—that’s a high number of individuals leaning on TEDx Talks for personal growth tactics or business strategies. So, why not use that exposure to your benefit and give a TEDx Talk to elevate your brand? Thousands of individuals have given TEDx talks since the program started in 2009, with more entrepreneurs and executives giving them each day.
Other tips for businesses to gain credibility
Establishing your business as a credible source takes time and commitment. First, consider how what you do resonates with others. Next, think about the types of connections you want to make and the employees and customers you want to work with along the way. Here are a few more suggestions to establish your credibility:
- Network or partner with other credible businesses in your area.
- Provide unique customer perspectives in advertising campaigns.
- Showcase your credentials or awards.
How to measure credibility in business
Once you have learned how to build credibility, it’s time to understand how to measure it. One way to measure credibility in the business world is to look at your organization’s referral percentage. The more customers and other businesses trust your reputation, the greater number of referrals you’ll receive.
For a dentist, credibility could be percentage of orthodontic referrals + new customer referrals from existing clients, while for for a software company, it might be the number of value-added resellers you’ve added to your partnership list. Here’s a simple equation to measure business credibility:
Credibility = Customer Referrals + Business Referrals + Number of New Partnerships/
Total Number of Customers/Partners Associated With Your Business
If we took this equation and applied it to the software company example, here’s what we’d get. Last month they had a total of 5 new customer referrals. In addition, 3 businesses referred them to other organizations. They also acquired 2 new value-added resell partners. So if their total number of partners and customers is 200:
Credibility = 5+3+2/200 = 0.05
As you can see, the software company’s credibility rating is 5%. You can compare these numbers month-to-month to determine your company’s average credibility score. Then, use that average to set a baseline goal and a target goal for your business.
The ROI of credibility
Ultimately, credibility is the foundation for any business. From getting a business loan to generating new customers, your reputation is what sets you apart from others. Consider the impact a professionally designed website, Google reviews, and impactful thought leadership content have in establishing your business presence.
Leverage credible brands like Forbes and TEDx to propel your business’s reputation forward. Create podcasts and cohost conversations with other leaders in your space. Then, measure the credibility rating of your organization and compare it month over month.
Once you have a solid data foundation, you might consider looking at the relationship between revenue and credibility. Odds are you’ll find consistencies between high credibility ratings and increased revenue. Tapping into the role credibility plays in your business early on can save you hard-earned dollars, time, and brand headaches, while increasing your startup’s chances of success.
How to Use Social Media to Promote Your Blog
Social media sites have exploded onto the online publishing scene over the last couple of years and can generally be divided into two types of site:
- Social Networking Sites – where the primary activity of the site is ‘connecting’ with others. Some of the most prominent sites in this space are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube.
- Social Bookmarking – where the primary activity is the finding and sharing of web content through different systems of ‘voting’ on sites. Examples of this type of site are Reddit, Digg and Mix (formerly StumbleUpon).
The above two classifications of social media sites are fairly broad – in reality there are many different sites appearing every week, many of which have elements of both of the above as well as other features. On Twitter for example, by simply posting links, images, and content with your account means you’ll have technically bookmarked them and if you also ‘like’ certain tweets, you can find and go back to them in the future. Pinterest functions similarly.
The point of this post is not to define social media but rather to look at it as an opportunity to find new readers for your blog. The reason that I include it in this series is that over the last few years I’ve seen numerous blogs virtually launch themselves via social media sites.
The reason for their success is that social media sites are among the largest sites on the web at present (the volume of traffic that they do is mind boggling) but that by their very nature they are about helping people to discover new parts of the web (particularly social bookmarking sites) – and as a result they are used by people actively seeking web content.
As a result I would argue that social media sites are a logical place to position yourself as a blogger. Let me say it again:
Social media sites have a lot of traffic and they are used by people to find content – why wouldn’t you position yourself on them?
Qualification: let me qualify that last statement before going any further by saying that social media is not THE answer to finding readers for your blog. It is not enough just to promote your content on social sites – but it is one element that can help you find a lot of new readers.
9 Keys to Using Social Media to Find New Readers for Your Blog
Much has been written about using specific social media sites to drive traffic to a blog. I’ll include a few links to things I’ve written about specific sites below – however in this post I’d like to speak in a more general sense and share some principles of using social media to drive traffic.
1. Be an Active Participant – it is important to see these sites for what they are – they’re social sites which are designed for regular use and interactions between readers. They are not designed for people to come to to spam their own links and leave – they’re designed for ongoing, genuine and helpful interactions between people. As a result those who spend time using these sites are the ones who generally are rewarded for doing so over the long haul. While there is a temptation to only use these sites on occasion when it benefits yourself you’ll find them more fruitful paces to visit when you regularly participate and genuinely interact with others.
2. Learn the Rules and Culture – different social media sites have different rules, standards, cultures and acceptable behavior. This covers things like how you interact with others, the language you can use and importantly for this article – linking and promoting your own content. Some sites allow (and even encourage) you self promoting – others do not. Some might allow it officially but will have users who don’t like it and who will ‘bury’ your efforts if you do. The key is to participate, observe and learn from your experiences.
3. Find Key Players – one of the best ways to learn about social media is to find and get to know key players on the different sites. Who is using them well? What are they doing? What might they be able to teach you? How might you work with them for mutual benefit? Many social media sites make it easy to find these key players by producing lists of ‘top users’ – these can be strategic relationships to have.
4. Make Friends – extending upon this is the principle of be-friending others on social sites. This is a key part of what they are all about and many of these sites make you more powerful based upon the number of your connections. So get out there – make friends and interact with your network. From this can come many fruitful interactions. It’s also a great branding exercise to ‘connect’ with people in these ways.
I should say at this point that I see people using their ‘networks’ on social sites in two main ways either as natural influencers or in more concerted and coordinated ways. The first (influencers) is about building a network that you naturally interact with and who will take notice of what you do. This makes you a powerful user and both by the social site taking more note of you but also as others will do so also. The second is what some users have been doing for a while now – joining together to vote up each other’s content. DoshDosh has some great tips on making and interacting with friends in social sites (particularly Digg).
5. Don’t Be Self-Centered – I’ve mentioned this already but it’s worth a point of it’s own. If your primary activities on social media sites is self centered then you’ll limit your own fruit from it. I know a number of top Digg users and in each case they are some of the most generous and ‘other serving’ people you’ll ever meet. They go out of their way to help others achieve their dreams. In doing so of course they themselves benefit – but it’s others first.
6. Find what Works Best for Your Blog – a regular comment on posts where I write about the power of using social media is people saying that they’ve ‘tried it’ and it doesn’t work. When I unpack these comments with people I often find that what they mean is that they tried one social media site once or twice – and it didn’t have much impact. The mistakes with this kind of thinking are numerous (ie it takes time to get to know a social media site, get to know people etc) – but one main thing that I’d say is that not all social media sites work for every topic of blog. For example I find that StumbleUpon works really well here at ProBlogger – but that Digg works on some more technically focused sites that I have worked with. The other thing that I’d say is that sometimes the biggest social sites are not always the best ones to use – but rather smaller and more focused ones can have bigger benefits. Every week new social bookmarking sites appear around different niches – search them out and focus on them too.
7. Social Media as a Branding Exercise – while social media sites can send you a lot of traffic very very quickly they can also be excellent places to do branding. Every time a reader or potential reader comes across you on a social media site the more you reinforce your brand. Get active on a site like stumbleupon and promote the content that others publish and you could actually get on their radar and end up benefiting yourself in many ways.
8. Convert to Loyal Readers – one thing that many bloggers fail to do when they succeed in driving traffic to their blogs from social media sites is to convert them into loyal readers. Getting readers to your blog is just half of the challenge – getting them to return tomorrow and every day afterwards is the other half – it can be the difference between a one off traffic event and a blog with an ongoing growth in readership.
9. It’s all about the Content – one factor that exponentially increases (or decreases) the impact of your efforts in social media is your actual content. Without content that engages social media users you are wasting your time as it will rarely capture their imaginations and inspire them to promote it. Writing great content is the focus of tomorrow’s last post in this series on growing blog readership – so I’ll say more then. PB
10 Blogs Every Freelancer Should be Reading
As a freelance worker, you are responsible for actively selling yourself, fine tuning your skills, and maintaining the motivation required to produce quality work that keeps the paychecks coming in. The upside of this work for freelance designers, developers, photographers and writers is the ability to maintain a flexible schedule and work remotely as you wish. The downside is that most creative people tend to flourish when they have the opportunity to work face-to-face with other professionals in their field and share ideas.
If you are not working with an in-house team, it is a great idea to use the Internet to your advantage and follow the blogs of fellow freelancers to stay current in your field. Here is a list of 10 blogs every freelancer should be reading if they want to achieve ultimate success.
Blogs for Freelancers – 1. Austin Kleon
Austin Kleon is a blogger living in Austin, Texas who writes and draws. He made it to the New York Times bestselling author list with his three illustrated books Steal Like An Artist, Newspaper Blackout, and Show Your Work!. Through his blog, he helps freelance artists identify how to access their inner talents and utilize them to their advantage. The Atlantic referred to him as, “positively one of the most interesting people on the Internet.” Check out “10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered.”
2. Freelancers Union
Freelancers Union is designed to educate freelancers about the ins and outs of the business. This blog is especially helpful around this time of year – tax season – when many freelancers are left scratching their heads trying to figure out how to report their wages and how much taxes they will owe. Check out “4 Tips for Taking the Stress Out of Tax Season.”
3. A Better Lemonade Stand
A Better Lemonade Stand aims to inspire new entrepreneurs in the world of online e-commerce and provide more insight about the necessary tools and resources required to enhance your online business and drive sales. Check out “How to Get Your First 100 Sales.”
4. The Branded Solopreneur
The Branded Solopreneur markets themselves as delivering “Visual Strategies & Branding Badassery.” As a freelancer, you may be underestimating the value of your brand and content strategy. Check out “20 Visual Marketing Strategies to Help You Propel Your Brand.”
5. Just Creative Design
Jacob Cass is the man behind Just Creative Design, a blog and design portfolio of his work. Even if you aren’t a designer, you stand to benefit from analyzing Jacob’s ability to successfully self-promote and navigate the freelancing world. Check out “How to Invoice Effectively to Avoid Poor Cash Flow.”
Minterest is a blog that focuses on information relevant to the fields of technology and digital marketing. If you are looking to brush up on your marketing skills, this is the place to go. Check out “How to Write a Perfectly Optimized Blog Post.”
7. Guerrilla Freelance
Guerrilla Freelancing offers, as they put it, “Bullshit-Free Business Growth Advice.” If you are looking for motivation on how to be tougher as a freelancer, work harder, and stand out among your competition, check out, “Dare to be Different: A Guerrilla Freelancer’s Manifesto.”
ProBlogger is a great resource if you are interested in learning how to make money as a professional blogger. If you are looking to get noticed, check out, “5 Ways to Grow Your Blog Without Relying on Google Traffic.”
9. Zen Habits
Zen Habits is an especially helpful blog for freelancers that are struggling to keep their stress levels and sanity in check. Freelancing requires immense self-discipline and work ethic. Check out “3 Small Discipline Habits You Can Train.”
Copyblogger strives to help you create quality content and master a successful content marketing strategy – which is essential is you want to get paid. Check out “53 Freelancing Mistakes That Are Costing You Clients, Cash, and Credibility.”
30 “Proven” Ways to Make Money Online Blogging with WordPress
Are you looking for the top ways to make money online that are NOT scams? WordPress is the largest publishing platform on the planet, and it powers over 43% of all websites.
You can use WordPress and blogging to earn money online by doing what you love. You can work from home, at your own time, and there is no limit on how much money you can make.
In this article, we will share top “proven” ways to make money online blogging with WordPress.
First, a word of warning: these aren’t ‘Get rich quick’ schemes. If you are looking for a way to get rich quick by making money online, then you’re in the wrong place.
Don’t be fooled by the pictures of expensive cars, mansions, or working from the beach. Every single one of them is a scam, and you will waste your time and money paying for any courses or training that you buy from those guys.
Unlike other “make money online” articles, this is a comprehensive guide on how to make money at home legitimately, using blogging and WordPress.
Many of these methods require some investment of time and/or money to get started. As long as you’re willing to put in the effort, you’ll reap the reward.
Monetize Your Blog Content
When you think of how to make money blogging, advertising is often the first thing that comes to mind.
Yes, it is possible to make money with ads on WordPress, but there are also other ways you can monetize your blog content. Here are a few methods that work:
1. Make Money With Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is when you recommend a product or service to your audience using special tracking links, and then get a referral commission for every time someone buys after clicking your link.
A real-life example of affiliate marketing would be when you help a friend open a bank account at your bank branch. Usually, they give you a gift card or a bonus of some sort.
Similar to that many products and services online have affiliate programs that you can join. There are affiliate programs available for every industry (niche).
If you’re interested in getting started with affiliate marketing, you can start by thinking about the products you already use that your readers may be interested in as well. Then you can see if they have an affiliate program that you can sign up for.
You can find a huge list of products to promote from:
- Commission Junction
Once you have selected the products to promote, then you can use a WordPress plugin like PrettyLinks to manage your affiliate links.
It allows you to quickly insert links into posts, create branded links, auto-replace keywords into links, and even see how each link is performing on your site.
Affiliate marketing is the easiest way to make money because you can promote a wide-variety of products. Just about every popular store like Walmart, BestBuy, Amazon, and others have an affiliate program.
2. Display Google AdSense on WordPress
Google Adsense is an easy way to make money from your blog. All you need to do is add a script from Google to your website and start displaying ads.
You will get paid for every time a user clicks on the ad. These are called CPC ads.
What is CPC? CPC stands for “cost per click.” By displaying CPC ads with Google Adsense, you receive a set fee every time a visitor clicks on an ad.
The cost per click is set by the advertiser. (This is in contrast to CPM ads, where you’re paid for ad views instead of clicks. CPM means “cost per thousand impressions,” where M is the roman numeral for 1,000.)
Google Adsense is a good way to start earning money online when you are first starting out.
Looking for a Google AdSense alternative? Try Media.net. They also have a large pool of advertisers, and their payouts are good.
3. Use a WordPress Advertising Plugin to Sell Ads Directly
Google AdSense is easy to set up, but the amount of money you can earn is limited. Each ad click earning will vary.
Directly selling banner ad space on your website can be more lucrative. Instead of having to rely on an intermediary who takes a cut of the money, you negotiate the price and terms on your own.
Above we mentioned the difference between CPC and CPM ads, where you are paid per click or per thousand views. While you could use one of those models for selling banner ads, most bloggers charge a flat rate instead. Charging a flat rate is easier than keeping track of views or clicks.
Still, directly selling ads takes more work to manage than using Google AdSense. Instead of just adding a bit of code to your website, you’ll have to negotiate the pricing, come up with an agreement and terms, and take care of administrative work like invoicing.
However, using a WordPress ad management plugin can make the process easier. We recommend using AdSanity, it allows you to manage Google AdSense as well as your own ads.
4. Sell Sponsored Blog Posts
Some bloggers aren’t interested in displaying ads to their audience and wonder how to monetize a blog without ads.
With ad networks, you lose some control over the content displayed on your site. Some readers will get annoyed or offended by ads, and more and more people are using ad blockers which affects your earning potential.
An alternative way to monetize a blog is through sponsorships.
A sponsorship works just like it does in sports, TV shows, or other industries. Basically, a company pays you to represent their product, talk about it, and promote it to your readers.
To get started, it’s a good idea to put together a one-page media kit that details your traffic stats, social media following, audience demographics, and any other data that will make your site more appealing to advertisers. Then, you can approach companies to negotiate a sponsorship deal.
When publishing sponsored posts, it’s crucial to know about the laws in your area about disclosure.
For example, in the United States, a blogger who publishes a sponsored post must comply with the FTC’s Endorsement Guides. This includes disclosing whenever a post is sponsored. You can do that by adding a sponsored post prefix to your post title in WordPress.
5. Get Paid to Write Reviews
Similar to sponsored posts, you can also make money by writing paid reviews on your site.
This is a slightly different monetization method than a review site with affiliate links, as mentioned above.
Instead, you get to try out products related to your niche for free, and even get paid for writing a review.
The process for doing this can be similar to getting sponsored posts. You’ll want to review products that are relevant to your niche, that your audience would be interested in.
You can approach companies on your own to ask about doing paid reviews. There are also websites like PayPerPost that can help to connect you with businesses who may be interested.
6. Earn Money Online by Flipping Websites
If you know how to build a WordPress website, then you’re way ahead of most people. Sometimes entrepreneurs like to buy already established websites that they can use for their own businesses.
If you can build a WordPress blog and start getting traffic to it, then you can sell it and make money for your efforts.
This requires knowing the type of websites in demand, and how to price and sell them. There are websites like Flippa that serve as auction sites and brokers for selling websites.
7. Get Public Speaking Gigs as an Influencer
If you are promoting your own brand along with your blog, then over time you will get a decent following establishing you as an influencer in your space.
You can utilize this recognition to get some public speaking jobs. Many bloggers make a lot of money by speaking at conferences.
Speaking at events whether you are paid or not helps you promote your blog and your personal brand. If you are good at networking and public speaking, then you would be able to find lots of new opportunities on the way.
Here are some general tips you need to keep in mind if you want to make money as a paid public speaker.
- Be an expert in your field. If you don’t have enough knowledge/skills at the moment, then start learning right away.
- Be consistent – You need to continuously promote your expertise on the topic through your blogging and social media activities.
- Let people know that you are available. You can announce on social media or privately reach out to event organizers.
- You may not find paid public speaking gigs right away. Many successful speakers start their public speaking career from smaller, more casual, and free community events and meetups.
Create a Paid Membership Website
If you’re not interested in selling ads or sponsored posts, there are plenty of other ways you can earn money online from your blog. A popular method is by having your audience pay to access certain content or areas of your site. Here are a couple of ways to do that.
8. Create Restricted Members Only Content
Your most loyal readers are huge fans and may be willing to pay to read more of your work. You can create a members-only area for them to share more in-depth blog posts, downloads, videos, audio content, and more.
Membership sites can be a big time investment since you must continually create premium content for your paying members. But they can be very lucrative because they are recurring revenue (subscriptions).
You can easily create a membership site using a WordPress membership plugin. We recommend using MemberPress, it is the most beginner friendly and robust membership plugin for WordPress.
9. Create a Private Forum
Another option for creating a paid membership site is to create private forums that users must pay to get access to. Forums are a great way for your audience to get one-on-one advice from you. Other members of the community can also interact and help each other out.
While moderating a forum can be a lot of work, a paid forum is a great way to earn recurring revenue from your WordPress site.
10. Create a questions and answers community
Question and answers communities like Stack Exchange and Quora are huge. They help you build an online community that is driven, motivated, and highly engaged.
Just like forums, you will have to spend some time building a sizable community. After that, you will be able to monetize user-generated content on your website using advertisements, affiliate ads, and other methods.
Popular question and answer websites are able to get direct advertisement and sponsorship deals from advertisers in their industry. This helps them negotiate a much higher rate and extra perks.
Create a Directory Website With WordPress
Another option for making money online with WordPress is to create a directory or listing website. You can then charge visitors to advertise their listings on your site.
Here are a few different directory ideas to get you started.
11. Create a Paid Business Directory
Web directories may make you think of the early days of the web before bots started indexing everything automatically, but they’re not completely obsolete.
Generic web directories are no longer necessary, but local or niche directories can be extremely useful.
Directories might gather reviews of local businesses, share the best podcasts on a given topic, or list the best products in a certain niche.
You can easily create a web directory in WordPress following our tutorial. There are also plenty of directory plugins for WordPress you can choose from, many of which allow you to accept payments with submissions.
12. Create a WordPress Job Board With Paid Submissions
Another option is to create a paid job board. Companies who want to advertise an open position to your audience can pay you to submit a listing.
It’s easier to create a successful job board if you narrow down to a specific niche. That way you can become the go-to site for anyone looking for a job in that industry, with minimal competition.
This works great for established blogs in a narrow niche. For example, ProBlogger is now famous for their job board for professional bloggers.
13. Create a WordPress Event Calendar With Paid Submissions
Instead of a job board, you could create an event calendar where you charge people to advertise their events. This also works well if you already have an established audience, because businesses will be willing to pay to reach your audience.
A paid event calendar is a good monetization method for local or industry-specific websites. You might choose to advertise events in your local city, conferences in a certain industry, or even webinars or live streaming events.
Sell Digital Products With WordPress
If you’re looking for a more low-maintenance way to make money online blogging with WordPress, then selling your own digital products may be a good choice. While you do have to invest the time to create the product up front, after it’s created your work is very minimal.
Here are a few digital products you can create and sell on your website.
14. Sell Ebooks on WordPress
Ebooks are an obvious choice for creating digital products. They are relatively simple to write and produce. If you’ve been blogging for a while, then you can collect some of your old blog posts and turn them into chapters of a book.
Once your book is written, you can design a cover using a tool like Canva and create a PDF of your ebook.
Selling digital products on WordPress is easy with a plugin. To get started, you can see our guide on the best WordPress eCommerce plugins compared.
For digital downloads, we recommend Easy Digital Downloads. It’s relatively easy to use and includes all the features you need to create your online store.
15. Sell Online Courses
Selling an online course is another great way to make money online.
Courses usually sell for a much higher price point than ebooks. You can charge a premium for your expertise.
You’ll need to create the lessons for your course, plus any supporting materials that you want to include such as downloads, slides, checklists, templates, etc.
You will also need to decide whether you want to offer personalized support for your course. Some sites offer two tiers of each course: a basic version without support, and a premium version with email support.
Once your course is ready, you can use a learning management system (LMS) plugin to deliver the course to your audience.
We recommend using MemberPress since they have a built-in course builder.
16. Host a Paid Webinar
Webinars are a great way to build your audience, share your experience, and grow your business. But did you know they’re also a smart way to make money online?
Webinars are similar to online courses, but a webinar is live and often includes a question and answer section.
WordPress makes it easy to host a paid webinar. Whether you’re using your site to actually host the webinar, or just to advertise your webinar and register participants, it’s crucial for your webinar success.
Sell Services Online Using WordPress
If you’re looking for easy ways to make money online, selling services is the fastest way to get started. There’s no up front investment of creating a product or investing in inventory.
Instead, you can just create a “hire me” page on your website and start looking for your first client.
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
17. Offer Freelance Services
As a blogger, you’re already an expert on your niche. You can start earning an income by offering your skills and expertise as a freelancer.
Freelancing is a popular way to make money online because it doesn’t necessarily require any upfront investment of time or money. You can just start offering your services to your current audience.
Once you start freelancing, you’ll need a way to invoice and collect payments from your clients. We recommend using either WP Simple Pay or FreshBooks, but there are also other invoicing plugins for WordPress.
If you’re interested in freelancing to make some serious money online, then see our list of the top tools for WordPress freelancers, designers, and developers for help getting started.
18. Start Your Own Consulting Business
Consulting is another way to make money online from your blog and share your expertise.
Instead of offering your services, a consultant offers advice and strategy so that their clients can become more effective.
As with freelancing, there is no startup investment. You can start offering consulting services on your existing blog. All you need is to create a page with a form so users can request more information.
19. Become a Coach
If “consultant” doesn’t feel like the right title for you, you can consider becoming a coach instead.
A life coach offers advice, guidance, and accountability for setting goals and improving one’s life. There are also other kinds of coaches, such as blog coaches, writing coaches, and more.
Whatever your area of expertise is, you can provide one-on-one help to your audience with coaching sessions.
To save time and make things convenient for your clients, you can set up a booking form so readers can schedule coaching sessions right from your WordPress blog.
Sell Physical Products Online Using WordPress
While selling digital products or services can be an easy way to start making money online, there’s nothing quite like selling real, physical products. Here are a few ways you can get started selling products with WordPress.
20. Start an Ecommerce Business With WooCommerce
Have an idea for your own product? Why not start your own online store?
WordPress makes it easy to create a shop or even add a shop to your existing blog using the free WooCommerce plugin.
Starting an online store can be a lot of work, since you need to create or buy the products and then ship them out yourself.
But selling physical products can be a rewarding experience, and sometimes a physical product is exactly what your audience wants.
You can also use Shopify or BigCommerce as WooCommerce alternative.
21. Create an Online T-shirt Store With WordPress
Creating your own t-shirt shop is easy with WordPress. Almost everyone wears t-shirts, so opening up a t-shirt shop is a great way to monetize any kind of blog. Designing t-shirts allows you to be creative and offer something unique to your audience.
It’s easy because there are services out there that allow you to upload your own designs, and they print / ship it for you. You get a profit share.
You can easily create your own t-shirt shop on your WordPress site using WP-Spreadplugin by Spreadshirt.
If you want a faster solution, then you can use a Shopify store which connects with dozens of t-shirt printing companies.
22. Create a WooCommerce Dropshipping Store
Dropshipping is another way you can create an ecommerce store on your WordPress website without having to handle inventory or ship items yourself.
With dropshipping, you create the store, manage the website, and customer service. But a dropshipping service will take your orders and ship them out to your customers. They’re an invisible third party that your customers don’t even know about.
You can use the WooCommerce plugin to create a dropshipping store. There’s also a WooCommerce Dropshipping addon plugin that allows you to automate the process.
23. Create an Amazon Affiliate WordPress Shop
One downside of dropshipping is that you have to find a good supplier, which can be a challenge, and sometimes you have to place a large order up front. This can make it difficult to get started without investing a lot of money.
If you want an easier way to set up an ecommerce site without having to ship products yourself, then you may want to try an Amazon Affiliate shop.
As with many of the items on this list, this works best if you specialize in a niche. If you offer everything, it’s impossible to compete with a big shop like Amazon. But in a small niche, you can differentiate yourself and really stand out.
For complete instructions, see our tutorial on how to create an Amazon affiliate store using WordPress.
Offering Platform as a Service
WordPress comes with some incredibly powerful plugins that are actually full-fledged platforms in their own right.
You can add such a platform to your blog or e-commerce store and offer it as a paid service. You get a cut from each sell, which allows you to earn passive income from user activity on your website.
24.Create an Online Marketplace Website
An online marketplace is like an eCommerce store where users cannot just buy but also sell their own products. Normally, WooCommerce assumes that you run a single vendor website.
You will need a plugin like WC Vendors to turn WooCommerce into a multi-vendor capable platform. After that, vendors will be able to register on your site and start selling.
You can make money by charging commission on each sell, or you can allow vendors to buy membership packages for their listings.
For more details, see our guide on how to make an online marketplace using WordPress.
25. Make an Auctions Website
An auctions website allows users to bid on products to purchase them. This allows the sellers to maximize their profits and customers to find unique deals.
Ebay is probably the best example of an online auctions marketplace.
You can run auctions on your WordPress website and even allow third-party vendors to list their products as well. You can make money by charging for the listing or by getting a cut on each sell.
To build an auctions marketplace with WordPress, you will need the following add-ons.
- WooCommerce (for shopping cart and payment features).
- An auctions add-on
- A multi-vendor add-on
For step by step instructions, see our guide on how to build an eBay like auctions website using WordPress.
26. Create a Job Marketplace website
Unlike a regular job listings website, a job marketplace allows you to make money on each job listing. Fiverr and UpWork are probably the best examples of online job marketplace websites.
You can promote your job marketplace as a micro-job platform for people working in the same niche as your blog. To make your platform more competitive you can select a very specific niche.
This will help you easily find customers and professionals who are unable to use large platforms because of too much irrelevant competition.
You can charge a small fee for job listings or when a job is completed. More successful completion of jobs will bring you more customers and freelancers in the future.
For details, see our step by step tutorial on how to make a Fiverr like Micro-Job website using WordPress.
Become a WordPress Designer or Developer
If you’re more technically inclined, then you can become a WordPress developer or designer in order to make money online. This will take more technical skills, but it’s not too hard to get started.
27. Develop WordPress Plugins
Plugins are what make WordPress so flexible and powerful. Plugins work like apps, allowing you to extend and modify any feature of your WordPress website.
Plugins come in all varieties, from very simple code modifications to complex software applications. If you have a basic grasp of how WordPress works and some simple PHP knowledge, you can create your own WordPress plugin.
As a plugin developer, there are many ways you can distribute your plugins. Anyone can submit a free plugin to the WordPress.org plugin directory, as long as they follow the WordPress plugin guidelines. This is a great way to gain experience and build a reputation for yourself as a WordPress plugin developer.
Once you’re ready to start selling premium plugins, you could use your existing WordPress blog to sell them. You’ll want to make sure that the plugin you create directly fulfills a need of your audience before offering it for sale. You can create a survey to see what problems they need to solve on their WordPress site, and then create a plugin that solves that problem.
You can then sell the plugin on your site using Easy Digital Downloads.
28. Sell WordPress Themes
If you enjoy web design and development, you could start creating your own WordPress themes to sell.
This requires both design and technical skills. You have to know how to create a good-looking design, and also how to code it for WordPress.
Using a WordPress theme framework such as Genesis can give you a head start. Then you’ll need to design and code a beautiful child theme.
29. Sell Graphics on Your WordPress Site
If you like design more than coding, another option is to design and sell graphics on your WordPress site.
You can create graphics such as stock images or logos and sell them on your site using an ecommerce plugin. You can also join online marketplaces to sell your graphics as well.
30. Accept Donations
Last but not least, one way you can make money from your WordPress blog is simply to ask for it.
You can begin accepting donations in a few different ways. You could add a Paypal donate button or a Stripe donate button to your website. Or for a more professional look and advanced features like email marketing integration, you could use WPForms to create a donation form on your WordPress site.
Donations are last on the list because of their limited effectiveness, since you have to rely on the generosity of your readers. It’s usually more lucrative to offer them something in return.
FAQs about making money blogging with WordPress?
At WPBeginner, we have helped thousands of beginners start their blogging journey. We have heard almost every question you can think of. Here are the top questions beginners ask us about making money online by blogging.
1. Which one of these proven ways is right for me?
Depends on what you are passionate about and which method would work best with your blog’s topics.
For example, if you run a blog about photography, then affiliate marketing, advertisements, and paid memberships may all work well for your blog.
Focus on offering useful, quality content, that users will find helpful and money will follow. Or as the saying goes, do what you love and the money will follow.
2. How much money can I make from blogging?
It really depends on how much effort you put in and the time you are willing to invest. To be honest, many beginner bloggers lose interest and give up quickly.
You will be making money based on how much traffic you get, the monetization methods you use, and the work you put in. Many successful bloggers make six and even seven figure incomes.
3. How long would it take before I start making some serious money from blogging?
Making money online is not a ‘get-rich-quick’ scam. Anyone telling you otherwise is probably trying to scam you. If you want to make money by starting a blog, then you will have to work hard and invest a lot of your time into it.
There is no easy way to tell you how soon you would start making money. Some bloggers start making small amounts soon after starting their blogs. Others struggle to get their blogs to take off.
However, those who continuously work and stick to a planned strategy are the ones most likely to see encouraging results very early on.
4. How do I get started?
Getting started with your own WordPress blog is easy. However, make sure that you are using the right platform.
Basically, there are two types of WordPress available. WordPress.com which is a hosted solution, and WordPress.org, also known as self-hosted WordPress.
We recommend using WordPress.org because it will allow you to start making money without any limitations. For more details, see our comparison of WordPress.com vs WordPress.org.
You will need a domain name and a web hosting account to start blogging with WordPress.org. Normally, a domain costs $14.99 per year and web hosting $7.99 per month usually paid for a full year.
This is a lot of money if you are just starting a new blog.
After purchasing hosting, you will be ready to install WordPress.
We hope this article helped to give you plenty of ideas on how to make money online using WordPress! With hard work and perseverance, anyone can earn money from their WordPress site.
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