Can You Monetize Your Content Discreetly Or Should You Be More Direct in Your Sales Efforts?
Running an online business is very much about making money. Money may not be your only goal, but if you want to earn a living, it’s probably a significant one. If you’re also trying to provide information, sometimes monetization is a challenge. Will you need to be more direct if you want to earn enough money for your efforts?
Why Are You Writing?
A large part of how you monetize will depend upon why you’re writing in the first place. Sometimes the reason you’re writing online in the first place doesn’t go well with being too direct about trying to make sales, at least not on every page of your site.
This is especially true if you’re writing something for another website or a print publication where it’s more about building your reputation and/or backlinks to your website. Odds are that you shouldn’t be putting in a lot of direct monetization, and it may not be allowed at all. You may simply be able to refer people back to your own website instead, and attract what income you may from there.
On the opposite extreme, you could be writing on your own website to inform people about a particular product or service you hope they’ll purchase. In that case, you want to be very direct indeed, with obvious links to click in order to make a purchase. You should still aim to be informative about what you’re offering, so that people can make a good decision and feel comfortable with what you’re offering.
There are many levels in between, and you have to decide how best to monetize them. Fortunately, you have a lot of options for monetizing an online business.
Monetizing With Banner Ads
A very simple way to monetize a website is with banner ads. You can go the low effort way and put up blocks of AdSense, pick banners to show on every page of your website, or pick each banner carefully by the topic of the page you’re placing it on. How you cope depends on your particular goals and the effort you’re willing to put into it all.
The problem is that banner ads are easily blocked. There’s plenty of software out there to handle it. Anyone who is blocking such ads won’t see the ones on your site, and so you won’t earn from them.
Monetizing With In-Text Links
You can also place ads manually, selecting the text you’ll link yourself. This can look much better, and because it works the same as other links, is less easily blocked. You have to put in the effort to find the right products to link to, but done right, that’s the good part.
Linking within text is the obvious choice if you’re discussing a product or service, whether it’s your own or an affiliate product. Once again, it’s about making it easy for the visitor to decide to buy.
Making Appropriate Disclosures
When you monetize your content, you must be certain you’re making appropriate disclosures. If it’s your own product, it’s pretty obvious that you’re going to benefit from any purchases, so your main concerns will be with keeping your claims accurate, respecting people’s privacy, having a terms of service and so forth.
If you’re selling affiliate products, you should be clearly noting that you get paid to recommend products. Make this one really obvious. If you’re recommending products honestly, being clear about faults as well as benefits, saying you earn something when people buy from your link shouldn’t hurt your chances to earn. It’s when it seems as though all you care about is what you earn that it hurts.
You may not hit upon the right kind of monetization right away. What other people are trumpeting as the greatest way ever to earn money online may not work so well for you. Keep trying out the different options and you may find one that works pretty nicely for you.