Knowing How to Best Monetize Your Site’s Traffic

The ability to create a web site or blog and know how to make the most out of your traffic is an art in itself. Every type of web site has it’s own type of traffic. What are visitors to your web site looking to accomplish? When someone visits a blog like this one, they are most likely looking for information on how to make money online and are more likely to join an affiliate network mentioned on the site, or maybe even sign up to an affiliate forum or training program.

As the owner of a web site or blog, it’s not only important to know what your audience is looking for, but also how you can make the most money out of your traffic, while also providing quality content. Let’s take a look at three different ways to generate revenue from your site, while also providing value to your readers.

Recommended Products & Services

When you are a big fan of a blog or web site, personal recommendations go a long way. Using this blog as an example, I’ve used Neverblue for many years now, and through my recommendations on this site, I’ve been able to refer them over $2 million in new business from affiliates. In addition to making mentioned of their ad network here and there, I’ve also written tutorials on how to setup search and ad campaigns using their network offers. Instead of creating a product and charging a cost for this information, I simply used a referral link to Neverblue and would get a commission on all referred affiliates. This not only provides useful and free content to my readers, but also provides a value in the time it takes me to create the content.

In-Content Contextual Advertising

I’ve been playing around with INTENTClick contextual advertising on a few web sites over the past couple weeks. Contextual advertising is quite interesting. From a webmaster and internet marketing stand point, we already know what these links and advertisements look like, so we are more likely to avoid clicking on these links… however, on an information or review based web site, people love these links and find them very useful.

Here are some quick stats from my experience with testing INTENTClick contextual ad links. The first set of stats is from a pet web site that is mainly on coupons and pet health. People are coming to this site and looking for good information on their pets and how to save money in the process.

The second set of stats below is from a webmaster / blogging type site, which the users of the site are more inclined to know about advertising methods and are probably less likely to click on links that may look like ads. Between the two ads/sites, notice the difference in CTR and eCPM.

Depending on your type of web site, contextual advertising can work very well for your site. You will likely earn a lot more money with an information, product/services or review type site versus a  webmaster/blogging related site. Since contextual advertising doesn’t take up any extra web space on your site, it’s becoming an extra and preferred source of revenue for many sites.

Personal Products and Consulting Services

This last point is more for established blogs and brands versus a regular web site. When people are coming to a blog to read what someone has to say, or learn from them, they are truly interested and passionate about the topic and person running the web site. It takes a lot of time and trust to build up a loyal following, which eventually turns into a “brand”. Through that branding, you can then brand out and start creating your own high end products and consulting services. Since the blog is all about you and what you do, there is nothing wrong with offering your services and products through out the site, an your visitors will actually be more interested in your actual promotions, then seeing you promote/offer someone else’s services.

Clean Site with a Monetized Mailing List

Through the use of mailing list services like Aweber, some web sites have made it their goal to build up a massive mailing list, which is where they focus all of their monetization in. It’s a great plan and it works really well. One example is to pump out really great content on a clean web site, then offer an exclusive offer or follow up email course. The goal here is to keep the focus directly on your content, and getting the user to subscribe to your mailing list. It’s much easier to continually stay in contact and convert a mailing list subscriber into a lead, then a one time visitor to your web site. Through a mailing list, you can also create an autoresponder series that will do all of the work for you, while you just focus on getting new traffic and subscribers through your site.

Finding the Right Revenue Model for Your Web Site

Just like all web sites are not the same, neither are the ways we generate traffic with our sites. From Amazon’s associate program, to Google Adsense to Contextual Advertising using yourself as a person brand, your options for generating revenue are limitless. The mindset you should have, is to continually try different methods and see what works best for you, while also keeping your user experience in mind.

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  1. In-text ads are one type of monetizing that I can not try, I do sponsored posts and they all refuse to accept blogs with in-text ads. I used to run Kontera ads a couple of years ago and they would pick and choose which clicks they honoured.
    My recent post My Goals For 2011 Revisited

  2. I guess different monetization methods work for different blogs, as mentioned by you. I would never go for textual links for the kind of blog I have, for example. But I would look more closely at Adsense, right affiliate network and developing/selling own products/services as the three main monetization methods for a blog. I think its better to monetize a website after a year or two.
    My recent post Yahoo Site Explorer Shut Down. What Are Some Alternatives for Checking Backlinks?

  3. I am currently using a infolinks but i never heard of intentclick. After seeing that stats i am going to give it a try thanks.

    1. I used all programs like adsense, cj, infolinks to make money but i am not really successful and always disappointed.

  4. oh, I long wanted to monetize my niche sites using intext link, thank you for recommending one and reminding me that I need to have it on my sites. Will try your recommendation.

  5. That is so true, Zac. Monetization should be key for a business and no doubt creating value for customers as well. One thing I learned before I became a bestselling author and long before Inc Magazine voted my company as one of the fastest growing companies is that knowing what your customer helps in creating engaging content that adds value for the customers. Monetization then is just a few steps away.

  6. Never try infolinks though! However, thanks for sharing the way to monetize our site. You almost give us brilliant ideas Zach. That is why I love your site. Hope that you are having fun this 2012. regards!
    My recent post SMS

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