This guest post is by Marcello Arrambide of WanderingTrader.com.
It has now been just over two years when I entered the world of blogging and I have started to make roughly $5,000 a month with my travel blog blogs.
Blogs, with an “S” at the end—that is one of the main topics of this post. I started off with just one site and now have a slew of travel sites, branched out into other industries like finance with my Day Trading Academy, and have enlisted the help of others in order to maximize profits.
I have been sharing a series of posts on Problogger about how I have been able to churn out a consistent income since starting my blog in May of 2010.
In this post I will be sharing how I started to maximize my profit from making around $3,000 a month, to making an average of $5,000 a month.
When I wrote the previous post about how I was making $3,000 I received many questions about exactly how I was making that amount money. I want to let you know that I am not here to tell you what to sell or how to sell it. I am explaining the process of how to position your blog to make money.
It’s not about what you sell if you never put your blog in a good position to sell it.
The most important thing is the process of how to get out there, because that is where most bloggers fall short. If you are interested in learning exactly what bloggers are selling to make money, check out a great post written by Darren himself on how bloggers make money from blogs.
The business mindset
You know the old saying that “when it rains, it pours”? It started to rain at WanderingTrader and I wanted to figure out how to create a hurricane. Most of the people (travel bloggers) I have met started because they want to share their passion with the world. Well, one of my passions is to make money.
I started the WanderingTrader blog as a business, and then started to talk about my passions, day trading and travel. It isn’t about the money in reality, it’s about the act of making it. Competition, seeing what works—the entire business world fascinates me. The fact that money allows me to have my freedom is an even bigger motivator.
I started blogging because I wanted to bring traffic to a day trading company that I was a part of. WanderingTrader turned into my own personal travel blog and now it’s a fully fledged business. Even though my passion about travel hasn’t changed, I also knew that if I wanted to maximize my presence on the internet I needed to think like a business man, not a blogger.
The most important thing about making money online is exposure, followed closely by authority. If no one knows that you exist, how are you going to make any money in the first place? Once I was able to solidify my site as a high-authority website that received sufficient amount of traffic, I was able to start making money with it.
Building a high authority site is no easy task. In the online world it takes time—lots of time. You have to build relationships, guest post on other sites, and find a niche for yourself in a crowded space. So when it came to creating a hurricane from the rain I had falling at WanderingTrader, I immediately thought about building exposure and authority.
Exposure is more difficult to achieve than authority, because you have to personally build that. Yes you can pay for it, but in the end when you want something done well, you always end up having to do it yourself. Authority however, is something that anyone can do.
I immediately considered the fact that I could buy a high authority site and start making money with it while I continued to build the exposure for that blog. I was onto something.
A numbers game
I already knew how to make money in the travel niche, so I continued in that same field. I thought, if I had two blogs to make money from instead of one, wouldn’t that double my income?
I was on the hunt for a high authority site that I could buy, and from which I could immediately recoup my investment. I found a site that was listed as PR 5 and I immediately wanted to buy it. I contacted a man that stated the owner wanted $1500 for the site, and replied by explaining that I would give him $1000 and not a penny more.
He gave me the classic salesman’s line: “I will present to the owner but I don’t think he will go that low.”
I bought a new, good authority, PR5 site the next day: ParamountTravel.com. I made $7,000 the first month pimping it out to every advertiser I could find. I made sure to add plenty of content to the site before I started speaking to advertisers, to ensure it looked as a high-authority site should.
But as luck would have it, I ended up treating Paramount Travel like a red-headed step-child: in the end, I only put new posts up when more advertisers contacted me. Even so, these days, when WanderingTrader receives an ad inquiry, I can double the sale by pitching ParamountTravel and WanderingTrader as a package rather than just selling ad space on WanderingTrader.
The numbers game on steroids
If I can make that much money with two travel blogs, why couldn’t I make more money with five or even ten travel blogs?
I bought a slew of domains and tried building the sites from scratch, myself. Turns out there are only so many hours in the day and I never got the opportunity to build the sites’ exposure authority. I haven’t been managing the sites correctly, because life keeps getting in the way. I run a travel blog for a reason: I am currently living overseas in Brazil and am having a great time getting know the Brazilian people. I just finished a recent trip to my second to last country in South America, Peru, and am already making plans to visit Ecuador (the last).
The point of this story is that I set my goals too high. When you try to do everything yourself, you simply can’t get everything done.
If I can’t build the websites myself, I thought, why not work with other people who want to make money with their blogs? This would allow me to not worry about the websites—I could simply do all the leg work to help build authority for the new sites.
This part of the process wasn’t just about making money, it was about helping others achieve their dreams through a joint venture. I would provide my expertise on the industry, and share their passion for travel. This solution seemed like it would work well on both ends, since I don’t have the time to run many other sites and I know many bloggers who want to break into the online industry.
I have a very good friends that only dream of doing what I am doing and want a little piece of the pie. Most people want to hide the way they do things, but I consider the online world to be massive: there is enough cake for everyone.
So I made agreements with a few of my friends to help build their websites: I would help with the backend of everything, and they would create the content. All advertising from the new websites would be split evenly, 50/50. The great thing about this agreement is that I get exposure across more markets than just travel—there is a translator, a day trader, and single mom in the bunch. The sites we’re working on are:
Maximizing your results
If you are trying to make money online, I would highly recommend that you focus on one site in the beginning so you can get the hang of things. One blog is enough work, and it will take you some time to get adapted to running it.
Most advertisers will find you, and if you are creative enough you will find ways to make money by selling other things other than just what advertisers are interested in.
Even though it costs money that you don’t have, look to invest in getting some help. Most people don’t value their time highly enough and can spend their time doing things that offer more value to a blog rather than spending time doing back-office work.
One last tip is to think out of the box: don’t just consider the regular process of building a blog and making money with it. If you do something different, people will pay attention.
Marcello Arrambide follows his passions around the world day trading & traveling on his quest to visit every country in the world. He has visited nearly 50 countries, lived in 10 countries across 4 continents, and also teaches people how to day trade in the markets when he travels. You can find Marcello online on his Facebook Page and Twitter.