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The 9 Most Important SEO KPIs You Should Be Tracking

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The 9 Most Important SEO KPIs You Should Be Tracking

If you ask 10 SEOs what their top SEO Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are, you’ll likely receive 10 different answers.

The reason is that KPIs are situational; they are specific to each type of business.

Accordingly, the following are nine KPIs that can be considered important for a wide variety of online monetization models.

An interesting thing about KPIs is that KPIs aren’t always metrics that show where you are winning. They can also be metrics that show where improvement is needed.

Many people rightly focus on metrics related to winning and focus on improving those in order to increase sales, conversions, and other metrics of winning. It’s a good approach.

But there are also KPIs related to failure, and those can be useful for identifying new areas to find success.

So, this survey reviews KPIs related to success and failure, investigates shortcomings in popular KPIs, and introduces additional KPIs that may not be widely known.

1. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)

Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) is a metric that measures the earnings each customer brings.

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In the context of SEO, CLV helps a business identify which SEO activities result in the greatest positive financial impact.

Jeff Coyle, co-founder of AI-based content strategy SaaS company MarketMuse, is passionate about CLV and feels it is an important KPI for many businesses to be aware of.

Jeff Coyle said this about the CLV KPI:

“My perspective on using CLV and why it connects to core KPI is because it’s a Unifying metric.

I love unifying metrics because all teams, all silos, have to support it.

It forces people who typically focus only on one stage of the funnel to think bigger, to think customer-centric.

So in terms of content, it typically means all teams have to think about the entire funnel, all personas, all levels of expertise of the future and present customers.

An SEO focused on a myopic one keyword to one webpage SEO hack or publishing low-quality content may be able to get lucky with a ranking every once in a while.

But that type of strategy isn’t going perform well with CLV growth.

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Similarly, a PPC person or a demand generation marketer who isn’t willing to support full funnel content at awareness stage and all the way down but they should, especially for support and customer content.

They get paid on leads and conversions.

Customer Lifetime Value makes them have to care about all the content. It makes them care about customer success, renewals, support and exponential viral growth.”

According to Jeff, focusing on CLV forces all parts of the company to hone what they do toward keeping the company growing year over year.

2. Content Efficiency

Jeff had one more KPI he wanted to share, and this one is Content Efficiency.

Content Efficiency is a fascinating metric because it’s about optimizing content not just for search engines but for achieving company goals for that content.

Jeff explains it like this:

“My other favorite KPI is content efficiency. It’s about how many content items you publish, how many content items you update and/or optimize versus how often those pages meet their goals and predicted ROI.

Average content teams create content that reaches 10% of their goals, 10% of their content is successful.

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I get teams operating 40% or more, where 40% or more of their content achieve their intended goals. That percentage defines good content teams.

Looked at another way, the company with the team performing at 10% Content Efficiency is a company that is spending 10 times what they think they are spending on content to achieve their goals.

How much does content cost? $400 to $500 a page? They only get meaningful results from 10% of that content.

So, their effective cost per successful content motion (publication and updating the content) is like $5,000 for the average team.

For a team operating at peak Content Efficiency, the cost is around $2,500 to $3,000 to achieve their goals.

Using Content Efficiency as a KPI, that’s when people really start wanting to improve their content strategy and transition to data-driven decision making for what to create and what to update.

Content Efficiency is one of the core MarketMuse value propositions. Personalized Difficulty metrics. You know what to build and how much you need to invest to make an impact.”

3. Average Engagement Time

I next asked someone who specializes in analytics, Kayle Larkin, about KPIs.

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Kayle is an Analytics and SEM consultant for B2B and ecommerce sites in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Asia, as well as a Content Writer here at Search Engine Journal.

She shared about a KPI available in Google Analytics 4 that tracks user engagement with a website, something that can be difficult to accurately measure.

Kayle shared:

“GA4 (Google Analytics 4) improved our ability to measure whether or not a user engaged with the website.

Average engagement time tells us the average length of time that the site had focus in the user’s browser. That means the user was most likely looking at it.”

4. Conversion Goals By Percent-Based Metrics

Kayle next advised reviewing KPIs as percent-based metrics:

“The most important KPI is conversions/goals. Which should only be that which makes your company money.

However… Don’t forget to look at goals by percent-based metrics, not solely raw event values.

Because if your traffic is increasing, the number of goals will naturally increase too.

But, if the goal conversion rate (expressed as a percentage) is dropping then maybe the organic campaign is not as efficient as it could be.

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Or, on the flip side maybe traffic is decreasing but goal conversion rate is increasing because you’re better focused/speaking to your target audience.”

Those two are the main KPIs from an “Is this organic strategy performing well over time?” viewpoint.

5. Accurate Search Visibility KPIs

Next, I asked Cindy Krum, and she shared two KPIs that are proprietary to her company, MobileMoxie.

The KPIs she shared are improvements to accurately assessing search visibility.

Most search ranking reports operate on the old model of 10 blue links. But, the search results are not 10 blue links anymore, they’ve evolved.

Cindy shows how there are more accurate KPIs to track that will give a better idea of search visibility.

Cindy shared metrics that provide a more accurate view of the search engine results pages (SERPs):

“At MobileMoxie, we are looking more and more at metrics that tell the story of the SERP – especially on important head terms.

We know that ranking in ‘Position 1′ isn’t what it used to be, so in our toolset we also look at things that give us more information about the ranking, such as ‘Pixels from the Top.’

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We also compare the ‘Traditional Rank’ with ‘Actual Rank’.

Traditional Rank is what SEO’s are used to using, which excludes things like PPC, Knowledge Graph, and other Google assets in the SERPs.

So, what we do is compare Traditional Rank with Actual Rank, which counts everything in the SERPs that can push an organic ranking down, including PPC, Knowledge Graph, Answers, and other Google elements in the search.

This comparison tells us more about the value of each ranking and how visible a search position really is to a searcher.”

6. Brand Visibility In Search KPIs

Cindy next shared another metric that tracks brand visibility in a way that includes all of a brand’s assets, particularly off-site brand assets.

“We have also started caring much more about a brand’s over-all representation in a search result.

That includes how much of the SERP is dominated by brand assets, including content on the main site, and also other content, such as social media profiles and posts, YouTube videos, images, Knowledge Graph results, and everything else that could be a good representation of the brand, and help drive sales and awareness.

For years, SEOs have been optimizing off-site content, and we want them to start getting credit for that work too.

Off-site optimized assets are useful because they crowd competitors out of the SERPs.

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So, we developed a score that we call the MoxieScore, that represents how much of a SERP a brand owns.

These are all important KPIs that we care about more now than ever before.”

7. New And Returning Users As KPIs

Jim Hedger, one of the hosts of the popular Webcology podcast, had an interesting take on using new and returning users as a KPI for optimizing web pages for more conversions, particularly for B2B websites.

Many KPIs are situational and depend on the type of site and who the visitors are. This idea about new and returning users as a KPI is no different in that regard.

Jim explains it like this:

“Most of us have clients with varying success metrics but each of those metrics have one thing in common, the site visitor must take a specific action, a conversion event, generally via a click.

Understanding how users get to the conversion event is critical to moving more users towards conversions.

Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and Bing Webmaster Tools can give us relatively good event metrics representing page value in relation to those conversion points.

In Google Analytics, it’s easy to separate site users into new and returning segments.

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This gives a wildly different view of which pages in a site are most valuable to which segment of visitors.

Returning users tend to convert at a far higher rate than new users, even though new users tend to heavily outweigh returning users.

New users and returning users tend to enter the website on different landing pages.

Knowing new users are more likely visiting the site for discovery and returning users are frequently visiting to convert, and learning which pages each segment tends to move through on their conversion journey helps SEOs craft content that better suits the site visitor’s intent.

You may be surprised by looking at any KPI while segmenting between new and returning visitors. Since I’ve been doing that, I’ve noticed how very different the actions of each segment are.”

According to Jim, looking at site visitors as a KPI and segmenting the traffic into New and Returning visitors, one will attain a better view of which users are most valuable, and why.

8. Average Time On Site – A Caveat

Average time on site seems like a no-brainer KPI to use for trying to measure the effectiveness of the content on different webpages.

But there are actually some limits to be aware of regarding this KPI that need to be considered before using this as a way to measure the engagement success or lack of success of website content.

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Jeff Coyle shared this:

“The average time on site can be a little misleading because if they don’t exclude bounces the data is terrible.”

I asked analytics expert Kayle Larkin about it, and she cautioned that Average Time on Site needs to be justified with data before using it as a KPI.

Kayle said:

“I don’t use Average Time on Site as a KPI so I’d have to see how they’re excluding bounces.

I guess this is one of those where and why things because it’s so situational.

Maybe if it was an affiliate site? Where you want people spending time on your page.

Maybe if they’ve found that people who spend between X and Z time have an increased conversion rate?

Otherwise, I’d ask why is this a KPI? How does this achieve business objectives?”

9. Revenue Per Thousand (RPM) And Average Position

Revenue Per Thousand (RPM) is a way to calculate how valuable your traffic is, particularly for ad-supported websites.

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And, Average Position is a keyword ranking metric provided by Google Search Console.

Both of these KPIs can work together for identifying keywords and webpages that need improvement. This is one of those cases where two metrics working together can yield better insights.

RPM KPI

I wouldn’t use this KPI in isolation to determine the effectiveness of a webpage. But, it’s a good way to measure changes over the course of time to evaluate how a change to a webpage affects earnings.

You can do things like make a webpage faster or swap in a different kind of ad unit and through the RPM KPI get an idea of how well or poorly the change affects earnings.

A Google AdSense help page describes it like this:

“Revenue per 1,000 impressions (RPM) represents the estimated earnings you’d accrue for every 1,000 impressions you receive.

RPM doesn’t represent how much you have actually earned; rather, it’s calculated by dividing your estimated earnings by the number of page views, impressions, or queries you received, then multiplying by 1,000.”

Revenue Per Thousand may not seem like an SEO KPI but ad-derived earnings can be tracked to SEO via the RPM metric.

The keyword and traffic choices made on the SEO side will determine the performance on the revenue side.

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For example, a common SEO approach is to focus on high-traffic keywords.

But some high traffic keywords don’t have a sales-related intent and this can be reflected in a lower RPM metric.

The most valuable keywords to bid on, for advertising purposes, are the ones with a strong sales intent.

The RPM metric is a good starting point for evaluating which kinds of topics have a good blend of traffic and high earnings.

Average Position KPI

This is a Google Search Console metric that shows the average position of a keyword phrase in the search results.

Google defines this metric like this:

“Average position [Chart only]-

The average position of the topmost result from your site.

So, for example, if your site has three results at positions 2, 4, and 6, the position is reported as 2.

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If a second query returned results at positions 3, 5, and 9, your average position would be (2 + 3)/2 = 2.5. If a row of data has no impressions, the position will be shown as a dash (-), because the position doesn’t exist.”

KPIs tend to focus on where a website is winning. And, if the KPI isn’t “winning enough” then the effort is made to improve the KPI scores.

But KPIs that show low performance can be helpful, too.

For the Google Search Console average position report, the keywords at the bottom provide goals for increasing traffic and expanding search visibility.

The first step is to match the low-performing keywords to webpages to see if maybe the page needs an additional paragraph to expand on a topic or maybe a new webpage is necessary.

If Google thinks your website is relevant for a certain keyword but not relevant enough to show it on page one of the search results, then that may be a sign that your website already has one toe on page one of the SERPs for that keyword.

Keywords listed at the bottom of the average position report can be an inspiration for new ideas for growing search visibility.

Top SEO KPIs

The concept of top SEO KPIs seems to me almost not possible to iterate because every business model has different goals. This is why I (and others) say that KPIs are situational.

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Marketing Analytics Expert and Canadian Search Awards Judge Alan K’necht makes the observation that because every business is different, each business must begin formulating their KPIs based on their specific goals.

Alan shared:

“Know what you want from your site, then measure that success. See if these successes improve at the same rate or faster than your SEO success.”

These top nine KPIs are not meant to be the absolute top KPIs. They are top because they are worthy of consideration and inspirational for developing your own KPIs that are relevant for your business.


Featured Image: Paulo Bobita/Search Engine Journal

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SEO

A Simple (But Complete) Guide

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A Simple (But Complete) Guide

Making money via blogging is real. Whether you’ve just started a blog or have been running one for a while, implementing tried and tested tips can greatly help you increase your blogging income. And that’s what you came here for.

But before that, here’s my story.

I started blogging in 2012 (when “Blogspot” was a thing). Over the years, I’ve started and run multiple blogs. While a few have been successful, a lot of them failed. 

However, blogging has changed my life completely. It has helped me generate side income, get freelance writing opportunities like this one from Ahrefs, job offers, and more.

And I’m super excited to share everything with you in this guide, which I’ve divided into two parts.

Let’s dive into the first.

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Four steps to start driving traffic that you can monetize

Many people who start blogging believe they need huge amounts of traffic to earn a decent income. However, that’s not true. 

High traffic doesn’t necessarily translate to higher income. 

No matter what niche you’re in, focusing on driving traffic that you can monetize is critical. You can do this in four steps.

Step 1. Choose a profitable niche 

Today, people blog about everything, including knitting. But not all niches are profitable.

For example, niches like making money online, finance, and health are more profitable than gardening and outdoor sports. 

However, it’s also a fact that the most profitable niches are often the most competitive, and choosing them may lower the chances of your success. 

Hence, the first step before starting a blog is to check if the niche is profitable and how competitive it is.

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Look for affiliate programs 

One quick way to determine if a niche is profitable is by checking the number of affiliate programs in it. You can do this via a quick search on Google. Try searching for niche + affiliate programs, e.g., “knitting affiliate programs.” 

Google SERP for "knitting affiliate programs"

You can also check the top blogs in the niche and see if they’re:

  • Selling any digital products.
  • Promoting any product as an affiliate.
  • Providing consultancy services.

And more.

Page about knitting materials reader needs to follow tutorials

Check the competition 

Choosing a less competitive niche has multiple advantages. For example, it can help you attract organic traffic faster. Here’s how to do it.

1. Look up the topics you want to write about on Ahrefs’ Content Explorer.

Ahrefs' Content Explorer search results for term "knitting"

2. Switch to the “Websites” tab to see the top 100 websites that cover the topic.

List of top 100 websites in Ahrefs' Content Explorer

3. Click through to the Organic Keywords report (in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer) from the caret next to the domain name in Content Explorer.

4. Check the Keyword Difficulty (KD) score, Cost Per Click (CPC), and traffic for each of the top 50–100 non-branded keywords. 

Organic Keywords report results in Ahrefs' Site Explorer

If you’re still confused about which niche to pick, we recently covered the six best niches for affiliate marketing that are both profitable and uncompetitive.

Write what you’re passionate about 

More than the profitability and competition of the niche, your passion for the niche plays a huge role in the success of your blog. 

When you’re passionate about something, you can write effortlessly for a long period of time without worrying about traffic and revenue. It also gives you a competitive edge, as the published articles will be unique and impactful (because they will contain your personal experience). 

To summarize, you should choose a niche that:

  • Is profitable.
  • Has low or medium competition.
  • Is something you’re passionate about (most important!). 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l45QlTFNWaQ

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Step 2. Develop the right mindset 

Developing great content takes a lot of time. So even if you’ve chosen the perfect niche, it will take a long time for you to build an audience that you can monetize to generate blogging income. 

Hence, compared to something, e.g., freelance writing, where you earn money after every article you write, a blog requires a lot of consistent hard work and time.

This is why having the right mindset is critical. Here’s my advice to anyone looking to start a blog:

  • Start a blog for the long haul, as it can take multiple years to see any significant results
  • Block a time (e.g., around 30 minutes) every day for blogging 
  • Focus on content quality and promotion rather than revenue in the early stages
  • Don’t blog full-time unless you have a predictable income coming in every month and/or have a comfortable emergency fund
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Step 3. Build credibility

Whether you’re promoting an affiliate product or an ebook, readers will be much more likely to convert when they trust you. 

Building credibility may seem more important in a few niches (e.g., health and fitness). But if you’re serious about growing your blogging income, you should focus on credibility too.

Also, building trust among your readers takes time. However, you can get started by:

  • Creating a good About Us page. Try telling your true story (as Pat Flynn has done in the example below) and why readers should trust what you write. We’ve briefly explained how Wirecutter does it in our SEO case study.
  • Showcasing comments and shout-outs from readers. 
  • Sharing website metrics like monthly visitors, number of email subscribers, and students (if you sell a digital product).
  • Showcasing websites you’ve been featured in (also in an example below). 
Page about Pat Flynn
Publications (in grid format) that Ryan Robinson is featured on

Step 4. Focus on building an email list 

Email is not just another distribution channel. 

Email subscribers are your true fans. And whether you want to promote a blog, launch a new course, or plug an ebook, there’s no better way to launch and drive traffic than by sharing the content with your email subscribers. 

You can get started on building an email list by adding a blog subscription box in the sidebar or promoting an email newsletter. A few other popular ways of building an email list are by:

  • Providing checklists as content upgrades (see example below).
  • Launching an email course.
Page to download free basic budget template

Six ways to make money blogging

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Before getting into the different monetization ways, here are some things you should keep in mind before leveraging them:

  • While diversifying your blogging income is important, you don’t need to capitalize on all the different ways.
  • Try focusing on one monetization method at a time. 
  • Never scrape off a monetization method until you’ve given it enough time. 

That being said, here are the six main ways to make money blogging:

  1. Advertising
  2. Affiliate marketing
  3. Sponsorships
  4. Selling digital products
  5. Paid communities
  6. Consulting and freelance writing

Let’s look into each of these in more detail.

1. Advertising

Let’s start with the most popular monetization method: advertising. Most bloggers start their journey by leveraging ad networks—the most popular being Google AdSense—to generate income. 

How do bloggers make money through advertising? 

Most advertising platforms pay a fee for every thousand impressions, also known as CPM (cost per mille). This depends on various factors like the user’s location, type of ad, and the advertiser. 

For example, impressions from geographies like the U.S. and U.K. will earn you a higher advertising income compared to impressions from Asia. 

A few popular advertisement platforms are Google AdSense, Media.net, and PropellerAds.

Drawbacks

  • Most ad platforms give you limited control over the type of advertisements you want to show your readers. 
  • Advertisements also hurt the user experience of the reader. This can be minimized by placing the ads in the right places and reducing the number of ads per page. 
  • When compared to other monetization methods like affiliate marketing, income from advertising per visitor is the smallest. 

Featured website – Search Engine Journal

Search Engine Journal is a popular blog in the SEO niche that leverages advertisements as a monetization channel. Since the majority of its content is about marketing and SEO news, advertisements make a lot of sense for the blog. 

Example of ad on SEJ article

2. Affiliate marketing 

Affiliate marketing is the most effective monetization method bloggers can leverage to generate income. Unlike advertisements where you get a few dollars per thousand impressions, affiliate programs pay you up to 90% of the total sales generated through your referral link. 

From Amazon to GoDaddy, many companies have affiliate programs. And joining most of them is fairly simple. 

How does affiliate marketing work? 

When you join any affiliate program, you’re given a unique referral link. Any sale generated through this link is attributed to you for a certain period of time (usually one to two months). 

Companies pay a percentage of the total sales generated from your link in the form of affiliate revenue. This is usually a fixed percentage that can increase upon negotiation or when you’ve successfully reached a certain milestone. 

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For example, if you run a blog about gardening, you can recommend gardening equipment by sharing Amazon affiliate links.

See also  6 Best Enterprise Tools & Platforms For Technical SEO

Recommended reading: Affiliate Marketing for Beginners: What It Is + How to Succeed

Best practices to follow

While joining an affiliate program and promoting a certain product are fairly simple, here are a few additional best practices that you should know:

  • Before joining any affiliate program, be sure to read the guidelines to understand things such as commission, minimum payout threshold, and more.
  • You should track your affiliate links using WordPress plugins like Pretty Links or other similar tools. 
  • You should ensure all affiliate links have nofollow or sponsored attributes. This is an SEO best practice. 
  • For authentic and detailed product reviews, try to use the product yourself if possible. Most software affiliate programs are open to providing free access to the tools for a limited time. You can also survey your readers to gain insights. 

A few popular affiliate platforms are Amazon Affiliate Program, ShareASale, and ClickBank.

Featured website – RyRob.com

Ryan Robinson runs RyRob.com, a popular blog in the “make money online” niche. Affiliate marketing is one of the primary ways he earns revenue through his blog. 

Most of the sales are generated through reviews of blogging tools and web hosting companies. You can read one of his latest blog income reports to gain more insights. 

CTA asking site visitors to use Bluehost, a web hosting service

3. Sponsorships

If you’ve been blogging for a while, you may have already received inquiries for sponsorships. This may be in the form of sponsored articles, newsletter sponsorships, advertisement banners, and more. 

Sponsorships are a great way bloggers can earn money. However, finding a sponsor is difficult, especially when you’re just starting out. 

To get sponsors consistently, you need to build a strong brand and have good traffic and engagement numbers to show.

How do sponsorships work? 

Most bloggers are paid a one-time fee for publishing a sponsored article or for a newsletter placement (as shown in the example below). 

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The fee is often based on the reach the blog/newsletter can provide. For newsletter sponsorships, for example, sponsors look at relevancy and metrics like active email subscribers, average open rate, and click rate. 

If you run a newsletter, you should consider monetizing it through email sponsorships. 

Example of a sponsored newsletter

Best practices to follow

  • Be sure to disclose when an article is sponsored
  • Share your honest feedback when writing a sponsored post/review because it’s not worth losing the trust of your followers

In the past few years, more companies have been leveraging sponsorships to generate brand awareness and leads. Here’s an example of Ahrefs collaborating with Harry Dry, who runs MarketingExamples.

MarketingExample's homepage: short write-up about Ahrefs and link to Ahrefs' site can be seen on page

4. Selling digital products 

Selling digital products is a great monetization method to generate blogging income, especially when you’ve built a strong brand. Alongside its scalability, you don’t need to worry about the challenges that come with selling physical products, e.g., shipping.

The best part about selling digital products is that you create them once and sell them forever (while making minor changes).

Here are some popular digital products that bloggers sell:

  1. Ebooks
  2. Online and cohort-based courses
  3. Printables

Ebooks

If you want to experiment with digital products, start by launching an ebook. Unlike a course, writing and then publishing an ebook are comparatively easier to do.

Harsh Agarwal, the person behind the popular blogging blog, ShoutMeLoud, launched multiple ebooks in the past. One of them is “The Handbook to Affiliate Marketing.” 

Page about ShoutMeLoud's ebook, "The Handbook to Affiliate Marketing"

The ebook was launched a few years ago. Since then, it has generated a consistent monthly income for Harsh. After publishing it, he just had to spend a few hours every year refreshing the content. 

A few popular platforms for selling ebooks are Gumroad and Payhip.

Online and cohort-based courses

Online learning has exploded, and the recent pandemic has fueled its growth further. People want to learn from their favorite creators who’ve already made it big in a particular niche. 

Most successful bloggers run online courses, and it’s also often their top three income sources. For example, Ryan promotes the course “Built to Blog” on his blog, RyRob.com.

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Page about the "Built to Blog" course

Even though courses are more impactful and valuable, the sad truth is most students don’t complete courses. 

If that’s also your experience, try cohort-based courses. Unlike prerecorded courses, these courses are online where a batch of students are taught at a time. 

See also  Hiring an SEO Consultant? Ask These 9 Important Questions

A few popular platforms for hosting and selling courses are Teachable and Podia.

Featured cohort-based course – PTYA

Ali Abdaal runs a successful cohort-based course known as Part-Time YouTuber Academy, where he teaches students how to start and grow their YouTube channels from 0K to 10K subscribers. 

CTA asking site visitors to join the waiting list for PTYA, Cohort 6

Printables and more

You can also sell printables on your blog, including cheat sheets, planners, and other templates, to generate revenue. You can also sell digital versions of such content—similar to what Marijana Kostelac does on her blog, Freelance Bold.

CTA asking site visitors to buy project planner

5. Paid communities 

As bloggers, you may already have thousands of engaged followers whom you describe as your “true fans.” 

While you may be interacting with them through comments and emails, you can take it a step further by starting a paid community. 

With platforms like Patreon, Slack, and Memberstack, you can get started within a few minutes. 

Featured community – Peak Freelance 

Elise Dopson started Peak Freelance, a community for freelance writers. Being a successful freelance writer and having contributed to websites like CoSchedule and Shopify, she decided to share her knowledge with other freelance writers—especially those just starting out. 

Starting a paid community is a great way for her to share her knowledge in exchange for a small monthly fee.

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CTA encouraging site visitors to join paid community

Today, communities are more than a platform to get questions answered. You can organize monthly Ask Me Anything (AMA) sessions, host other influencers from the industry, and more. 

For example, alongside the membership, Elise grants members access to monthly town halls, private podcasts, a data library (containing statistics), and more. 

Page showing what all-access members can enjoy, e.g., book club, monthly town halls, etc

If you’re starting out, you can build a free community and plan to monetize it later. 

The secret to any thriving community is that it genuinely needs to add value. 

If you already run a paid community, you can look at scaling it by hiring a dedicated resource who assists you with onboarding, organizing events, flagging spam content, and more. 

Best practices for starting a paid community 

Before you build your paid community, here are a few things to keep in mind. It’s important to: 

  • Create a community guideline and ensure it’s shared with all members. On Slack, you can create workflows that trigger a warning message when certain keywords are detected. 
  • Accept members who can truly benefit from the community. 
  • Onboard new members, but don’t forget to also take feedback from existing members and implement the changes.

6. Consulting and freelance writing

If you’ve been blogging for a while, you may have already received emails from companies seeking your services—be it for consultancy or freelance writing.

In many ways, a blog is a reflection of you and your skills. It is by far the most powerful way to showcase your skills and knowledge. 

I still remember getting inquiries for freelance writing services just after publishing the first few articles on my blog. 

Key steps to follow 

Here are a few steps you can follow to get started:

First, create a dedicated page sharing details about your services. Highlight it by adding a section on the homepage and the menu bar. 

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CTA asking site visitors to book a free chat to discuss Peak's marketing and SEO services

Second, you can increase credibility by adding testimonials and logos of your previous clients and work samples.

Lastly, to filter your leads and get the right ones, make sure to ask different questions such as industry, budget, exact requirements, goals, and more. I love to use Typeform to capture such details, but there are many alternatives out there that are equally good. 

To ensure you generate quality leads, provide all the important details of your service, including the process you follow. You can also answer frequently asked questions. 

Section outlining Peak's process

If you have the bandwidth, offering consultancy or freelance writing services can be a great way to diversify and grow your blogging income. 

Final thoughts

Blogging is much more than just a way to earn passive income. It greatly impacts your personal and professional life in different ways. 

I’m a living example. My blog has helped me to contribute to websites like Ahrefs’ blog, which was a far-fetched dream a few years ago. 

While often overlooked, writing blogs can open new avenues for opportunities, help you learn new skills, improve your craft, get you speaker opportunities, and more. 

Got questions? Ping me on Twitter.



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