How To Make Money From Blogging Even If No One Is Paying You Part 2

By: | August 9, 2015 | Tags: , , , , ,

Should bloggers self host? Click to see the answer.It is common knowledge that if you want to make money blogging, you should self-host.

However, before making that decision, you should be aware of the advantages and disadvantages of self-hosting.

Disadvantages to Self-Hosting

1. Not all your blog followers will follow you.

A reader wrote and said she returned to a WordPress.com hosted blog after she tried to self-host but lost all her followers.

Like with any decision, you should do research.

Before making the change, I read articles that said it was possible to redirect your followers to your new site.  I spoke with bloggers who brought their followers with them, and my tech helpers said they would ensure my WordPress and Email followers would go with me to the new site.

Also, I have a MailChimp list of additional followers.  When people sign up for my blog to get my free incentive, they sign up through MailChimp.  I have hundreds of people on that list.

Worst case, and all those sources were wrong, and I lost my following, I knew I would still have that base.

It is important to know that you will lose some of your followers.  My followers primarily come from WordPress.com, WordPress.org, or are Email subscribers without blogs.  Those followers transferred.

If you have any followers on Blogger, Google’s platform, they will not transfer to your new site.  They will have to sign up again.

2. You can still make money blogging without self-hosting.

  • Accept a credit card donation.

WordPress.com users can make money from blogging.

A Momma’s View, which is at https://amommasview.wordpress.com, is a WordPress.com site.  As can be seen by the screen shot, this blog has the potential to make money.

When I first wrote How to Make Money Blogging Even if No one is Paying You Part I, I indicated I felt accepting money for blogging which gives out free information on the Internet is in some way tacky.

I have since changed my position.  Notice this comment I received from a reader after I published a post he requested:

Thank you … when I… become something good, I will definitely come to see you with a surprise…

Suppose the blogger did want to thank me by making a donation to my site.  If I don’t have the “donation” option, the reader can’t make that choice.

I shouldn’t assume people think having a credit card donation on a website is inappropriate in an age where information disseminated on the Internet is free.  I shouldn’t think for people.

I know a WordPress.com blogger who receives credit card donations, and then goes out of his way to write thank you notes, just like I would as a teacher if a student’s parent gave me a holiday gift.

How to get a credit card donation option on your blog:

The admin blogger of A Momma’s View  explained, “Check it on WordPress Support page (look for Buy Now or Donate button).”

  • You can sell ads on a WordPress.com website!

During my interview with the A Momma’s View blogger, she shared,

“Depending on the plan you’re on, you can’t sell ads…”

Notice she doesn’t say that you can’t sell ads on WordPress.com, she explained, “Depending on the plan you’re on…”

I also interviewed Stella, the blogger at FashionandStylePolice.  She explained how you can have ads on a WordPress.com site.

“I am on WordPress.com with my own domain. I have had ads [and] a reblog since I had my blog. I had to apply to WordPress to get ads on my blog. It is up to them to decide which blogs on WordPress.com has ads.”

3. Self-hosted bloggers lose the ability to be reblogged.

For bloggers who depend on reblogging for readership growth, this can be perhaps the biggest disadvantage, especially if you can still make money blogging in these other ways.

This can also be frustrating for their readers who might want to share their work in this way.

4. Self-hosting can be time-consuming.

Many decisions needed making.  Some of them are still underway.  I had enormous help, but it still took a week to set up my new site.  Do not attempt this unless you have time to set aside.  I am not tech savvy.  Validating my new site at Pinterest, signing out of my old site and into my new… Setting up a new site, like any new venture, takes time.

5. Self-hosting can be expensive.

There is site maintenance involved.  In addition to paying for a new domain, a theme, tech help that might be needed, there are site maintenance charges unless you are knowledgeable enough to maintain your own site.

Advantages to Self-Hosting

1. You have more freedom. I interviewed Trudy of Rendevous in New York.  She explained why she self-hosted.

I waited a while to start my blog. And I knew that if I was going to start creatively writing a blog, I wanted to have full control on how I managed my blog, how I wanted to monetize it, free to use any language I felt necessary without worrying about repercussions, free to take on affiliates and not be worried that I am breaking a list of rules that I’m not aware of. It’s my baby to raise at my pace, the way I say. It’s liberating, frightening, and a learning experience.

2. I can still receive comments, and people are notified of my comments.  I heard this was not possible without signing up for Disqus.

3. The WordPress app still works.

4. You are able to install social sharing buttons. Shareaholic buttons are easily installed using a free plugin.

The StumbleUpon button is available, even though it is no longer available through WordPress.com unless you install it manually.  Another button I am excited about is Flipboard.  Both sites are huge referrers of traffic for me.

These buttons could lead to more social shares which could lead to more traffic.  Perhaps because they are larger, readers will see them and remember to share if they like your article.

5. You have the potential to make money.  According to the Huffington Post Complete Guide to Blogging, “Anytime you get lots of eyeballs in one place, there is money to be made.”

How to Make Money Blogging Even if No one is Paying You Part I explains how you could make money by becoming an affiliate of Amazon.com.

You could sign also up for Google Adsense.  According to the Huffington Post Guide, “The program matches ads to your site’s content.”  Therefore, these could be ads for products your audience genuinely needs.

I hear people sell their books on their site.  People have requested being able to purchase a book full of my blogging tips, so they have them all in one place.  If I ever pursue that dream, I should be able to sell my book on my site.

6. I hear Google Analytics gives better information about where your referral traffic is coming from on a self-hosted site.  I like to get good return on my time investment by promoting in places where I get the most referral traffic.

7. Many self-hosted companies offer free 24/7 tech. support.  A Small Orange, which is my company, does, and they are very knowledgeable and helpful.

Should #bloggers self-host?

In closing, I can not adequately analyze the merits of self-hosting since I’ve only just started my path down a self-hosted site.

Fortunately, I had wonderful help along the way.  For this reason, I found starting a second blog far easier than starting the first. My friends have been valuable resources to me, friends I didn’t know when I first started blogging.

Shoutouts go to Trudy of Rendevous in New York, Shawn from Down Home Thoughts, Terri from Perspectives On…, Stella from FashionandStylePolice and Elena from Living With Batman for helping me begin my self-hosting journey.

In addition, I had talented tech help. Teresa from Boutique Vendors Designs set up my site, and Jacqui from WackyJacqui’sDesigns redirected my content and followers.

I don’t know if I will ever write a book or make money in any way from blogging.  I don’t know if I will be able to make better use of Google Analytics.  I do know there are no chances if I don’t stay on this self-hosted path.

Readers, please share, so bloggers know the full ramifications of self-hosting before they consider trying it.

What are your thoughts after reading this?  Do you think you might be tempted to try self-hosting?  If you are already self-hosting, are you happy with your decision?  Why?  I look forward to your views.

Related post:

http://www.livingwithbatman.com/2015/05/17/transfer-blog-wordpress-com-to-wordpress-org/

 

  1. Rob Alberts | at 2:50 am

    One of mine blogfriends is now asking for some money to be a follower.
    Though I love reading that blog I refuse to pay.

    Since blogging is a hobby of mine.

    Kind regards,

    • Janice Wald | at 2:55 am

      Hi Rob,
      Am I understanding you correctly? He wants you to PAY him to read his blog? I never heard of that. I understand your refusal to pay. There are plenty of free blogs on the Internet with the same information, I am sure. Thank you for writing and telling me about it.
      Janice
      Janice Wald recently posted…Blog Party – Meet and Greet #6My Profile

  2. Jim Buchanan | at 5:06 am

    I self host without any wordpress involvement. The site isn’t too sophisticated, but I have fun and I can do absolutely anything I want.

    I used to have ads on the site (before the blog section was added). I made fair money many years ago, but all the affiliate terms changed to the point that I was selling people’s stuff, but not enough to earn anything. Now I just have ads for non-profits like the suicide prevention helpline (I blog a lot, but not exclusively about mental health)

    Do you allow links to our blogs here? I don’t want to post it without asking…

    • Janice Wald | at 12:06 pm

      I am grateful for your help. It helped being able to pick your brain. Thank you again.
      I installed Shareaholic. To my delight, there was a StumbleUpon button there. Do you have it? It’s under “More”. I don’t know how to get it visible, but at least it’s there if readers want “More” choices.
      Please confirm you are getting my posts in your Email. I was told WordPress.org readers were also transferred, but I wanted to make sure. Thanks.
      Janice
      Janice Wald recently posted…Blog Party – Meet and Greet #6My Profile

  3. John doe | at 10:14 am

    With the information you provide and the speed that your blog has grown, if anyone will be successful at self hosting it will be you. I am sure the advertisers will line up to be on your site. Whenever you write your books on blogging tips, the way all the different social media sites support you and your efforts to help people, anyone who has ever read your blog will want to buy them.

    • Janice Wald | at 4:31 pm

      Hi Susan,
      I so respect your opinion as someone who has been at this far longer than I have. Thank you for offering your view about why self-hosting is a good choice. I offered both sides, and readers are writing about which they prefer. Clearly, four days is too early for me to tell, but so far, I am loving it. Thanks!
      Janice
      Janice Wald recently posted…Blog Party – Meet and Greet #6My Profile

  4. Bella Silverstein | at 1:07 pm

    Janice, thank you so much for posting this. In today’s gig economy, I’m more than ready to try something new. I’ve already decided I want to self-host, and I’m in the process of figuring out the details. When the time comes, I’ll revisit this info. I need all the help I can get! Many thanks for this.

    • Janice Wald | at 1:43 am

      I will let you know how it goes; it still has not even been one week. I am glad you found your way to my new site. You can follow by putting in your email on the home page where it says subscribe. Thanks!
      Janice

  5. Sue Coletta | at 12:10 pm

    I must have missed this post. If I’m understanding you correctly, even if you have WordPress as your company, you can’t keep the same domain name? I own two domains, why can’t I switch them over to the new site, do you know? Also, when creating your self-hosted site, did it interrupt your WordPress.com site? I have a new book coming out in the fall and I wanted to be able to sell books on my site, but I can’t lose my followers. I have nearly 5K followers. To lose them before the launch would be suicide. I don’t know what to do. I see way more advantages to self-hosted than disadvantages, but it’s nerve-wracking to think about losing followers. Any advice?
    Sue Coletta recently posted…Psst…I’ve Added 10 More Ways to KillMy Profile

  6. Lisa | at 12:31 am

    Great post! You have a lot of very helpful information here and there are definitely a few things I didn’t know! Visiting from Saturday Sharefest

  7. Pingback: 18 Important Things You Should Know About Self-Hosting

Would you like to share your thoughts?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.