Traditional blogging has become too expensive over the last few years. In 2023, traditional personal blogs are now faced with competing against large businesses that are willing to spend $500 to $8,000 per month over keyword ranking on Google. For someone who is writing a blog as a side hustle spending 2 to 4 hours a day, it simply isn’t profitable to compete against these bad boys in the long run.
Since 2011, we are starting to see a shift in user preference for consuming information. Printed newspapers are dying out at a rate of 2 every week, individual blogger content is not as popular as it was in the early 2000s, and social media influencers are creating more video content to attract visitors.
A study conducted by MIT showed the human brain can identify images in as little as 13 milliseconds. Combine that with audio and live, moving images and you’ve got one powerful marketing tool. Compared to other media, video tells a more memorable and evocative story because it is both visual and auditory. Viewers’ strong emotional connection to your brand is what piques their interest and strengthens their passion for it.
Even with print circulation media on a decline, The New York Times is actually making more revenue than ever. Since 2011, the company’s earning has been up more than 30% from $1.5B to 2.1B. The increase in earnings can be attributed to 2 new sources of income:
- Digital Subscription
- Others (Affiliate Income and Sponsored Post)
The content has also been covered by Ahrefs detailing the adoption the company undertake to build its authority online and staying alive as digital content evolve.
Okay while your blog may not be as great as these large newsletter businesses, there are still lessons we can learn from them. With visionary content taking over the Internet, the elephant in the room we need to address is whether traditional blogging is over, and whether are there solutions to get around it.
The answer we give here at HustleVenture is:
There’s still hope, if you are able to adapt to the changes.
How Expensive is Running a Traditional Personal Website Blog
Here’s a breakdown of the cost of running my business/publication HustleVenture on WordPress:
- Domain name: $40/ year
- WordPress yearly fee: $756/ year
- Hosting: Bought on Cloudfare (Best secured hosting) for $20/ month
- Theme Builder: GeneratePress One-time fee of $224
- Keyword Research Tool: Ahref which costs $99/ month
- Email Marketing Tool: OptionMonster for $143.74 / year
This brings to a total of $2,591.74 per year simply to run a website. We are paying less than the industry average since we can make use of many free tools available in the market. This means to run HustleVenture, I need to be making over $250 per month to keep the website profitable.
Disclaimer: I’ve been blogging for over 10 years, shifting from personal to corporate blogging. So I do know the struggles that beginner bloggers are going through.
I would dare to say that I’ve been one of the lucky few that have survived blogging. This year was an amazing year for HustleVenture, we broke over 1 million impressions and converted a handful of our readers into sales.
The transition from a traditional blog to a finance newsletter business was a necessary step to survive the changing times we consume content. It’s common to hear bloggers now having to make money from paid ads, sponsored posts, affiliate sales, and writing services.
PS. If you are looking to grow your online business, feel free to drop in on a Calendy meeting to schedule a 1-to-1 call with me.
Here at Hustle Venture, we support individuals looking to build their wealth.
If you would like one of our team members to support you on this, feel free to schedule a call and we would like to support you in your journey!
How to Effectively Earn from Blogging
Create a website ONLY if you have strong online presence and high paying service.
Traditional ways of writing content and publishing it to hopefully rank on Google is almost no longer possible.
Most people love the idea of creating their website as a personal portfolio. They would be creating content during their free time and pray to the SEO gods to rank their content on page one. Sorry to be the bad guy here but that’s unrealistic.
Unlike personal blogs, business blogging is almost 100% transactional. This means the entire content is sales-driven and usually has strong answers to certain questions. Think about it:
Would users hear the opinions of bloggers or credible businesses that are known in the market?
How Traditional Blogging Can Survive
The shift in blogging has only just changed from individual to corporate. From what I’ve noticed, we are only seeing a shift in what Google and the readers would like to get online.
Creating effective solutions in your blog means good affiliates or strong backed-up case studies on solutions to help readers. And you have to consistently do that to build online credibility.
At HustleVenture; our business is all about promoting strong financial literacy and side hustle content. We have been doing that for over 2 years now and our brand is associated with unique and interesting subject-matter experts who share their opinions.
If you think that’s what you are and want to share your own take on this topic. Be sure to join our other writers by filling out the application form below.
How to Thrive as a Blogger
Blogging still exists, just not on personal websites anymore. They are now almost all on Medium, Substack, LinkedIn, and other writing platforms. It’s cheaper that way.
Join a Writing Platform
Over the last few years, we have seen a rise in writing platforms, and it’s a good opportunity to rely on one of them to build your online presence. This means you will never have to spend a single dollar on SEO to find readers!
Many writing platforms like Medium have strong domain ratings and therefore, can consistently bring in readers. It’s crazy to know that Medium has over 33.4 million monthly visitors on their blog!
I wish they all read my article🥲😭
Yes while joining a writing platform provides free traffic to your content, just know that we are now at an inflection point.
Writing platforms are not big on making money, this is why they are constantly seeking money as well from their readers and writers:
- Medium recently launched the “Become a Friend”
- Vocal just announced that you can invest in their company shares (I like this the most tbh)
If you are looking to thrive as a blogger, you must become a subject matter expert on 1 platform, that way, people will remember you strongly.
Sell a High Ticket Item
Your goal as a blogger is to “write and earn”, surprisingly, most writers don’t .🙃
You don’t want to be eating peanuts all day. Know what the market is looking for and evaluate the risk-to-opportunity ratio.
If you are doing blogging as a side hustle, have at least 2 high ticket items to constantly promote. ALWAYS PASTE THEM either in the middle or end of the article.
Perks of this: Paste and forget, if your content reaches the right audience, they will click on the link and pay for the affiliate. This is kind of my favorite “passive income-generating machine”.
PS. Nothing is passive, you gotta work on building your community right!
Here are two affiliates you can steal from me:
- OptinMonster Affiliate —This is my passive income machine. If you are doing lead generation, this tool is AWESOME in converting email subscribers into paid consumers. You can expect to earn anywhere from $20 to $118.
- Amazon Affiliate — This is by far the best and my favorite lazy way of promoting affiliate links. I simply copy and paste products with high demand that are related to the blog. Don’t expect high income, probably a dollar or two for every product sold. Only good once you have a strong online presence.
Transition to Other Platforms
Finally, your goal is to not be tied down by a platform. I’ve never depended on Medium for income and neither should you.
The end goal of being a writer should be the freedom to write and earn more from your writing. This ultimately means you will have to invest in creating a blog for yourself.
Others may complain it is tough but this is the BEST and ONLY WAY to truly way you can earn sustainable income that’s not tied down by other platforms. Google may be an ass sometimes but if you play by the book, its easy to win.
How to Stay Ahead in Blogging
Look out for change in user behaviour
Link your page to tools like Google Analytics or Google Search Console. Take the time to do extensive research on what your readers are looking out for. This is key to surviving traditional blogging.
Here’s what I did:
- Add short reels into my article to summarize my article to keep readers in for the first 30 seconds minimum
- Bold words and add descriptions or interesting images to keep readers focused on a page for at least 2 seconds
- Research extensively on questions constantly appearing on Google on a related keyword
- Strong ACTIONABLE ANSWER such as an affiliate product that would help them or a service to ease their effort
Those are just some of what we at HustleVenture have researched on based on our readers. If you would like similar research and work done for your business, feel free to reach out to me by commenting on this article.
Hope this article draws some attention to my perspective of the changing shift in the blogging space. Shoutout once again to Evan Kelly for his amazing perspective on traditional blogging.