Last Updated on October 11, 2020 by Early retired mom
I’m going to be honest with you – blogging is not a get rich quick scheme.
In fact, many personal bloggers don’t see a single cent from their hard work. And that’s okay. Because a lot of bloggers actually don’t care about making money.
Some just want to share their content with their audience. Others type of blogs do it for fame and posterity.
But you and I, we’re different. We want to blog because we want to make money!
This is why knowing about the different types of blogs that are proven money-makers is important – it will save you a lot of time, effort, and money.
With that said, blogging is a LOT of work, especially in the beginning.
However, if you set up your blog correctly, then making some money is certainly a possibility.
It can even help you reach your financial goals faster than your regular 9-5 job can!
Are you ready to dive in? This is what you’re going to learn in this article:
- The different types of blogs that are proven money-makers (with real examples of blogs in each category)
- How these blogs make money (their monetization options)
Alright, let’s get to it!
What are blogs exactly? Are they the same as websites?
Well, yes and no. All blogs are websites. But not all websites are blogs.
Confused? Let me break it down further.
A static, non-blog website
Let’s say your website has 5 pages – the home page, the about page, the services page, the contact page, and a legal disclaimer page.
None of these pages need to be updated often.
In fact, you can just publish your website and never again update it. That’s a regular “static” website.
A blog website
A blog, on the other hand, can still have all the same pages as the static website mentioned above. But it will have a new section called BLOG (it can go by other names, too).
The only difference is that the blog section is updated with content frequently, so it’s not static by any means.
Blogs are more like content journals. You can write an entry every day, once a week, once a month, or whenever you feel like it.
Blogging is not limited to individuals. A lot of companies are realizing the benefits of blogging and content marketing. So, there really isn’t much difference between the two in today’s multi-platform, inter-connected world!
So, what types of blogs actually make money?
Before we dive into this topic, let me just make a quick disclaimer:
Building a blog similar to these proven, money-making blogs DOES NOT guarantee you will get the same results.
There are a lot of things that contribute to a blog’s success. These include high-quality content, technical know-how and marketing to the right audience.
But don’t let that scare you off. This is why my blog exists – to help you navigate the fascinating world of blogging!
Also, modern blogs are often a combination of different types of blogs, so you can have a personal blog that’s also an affiliate and lifestyle blog!
So, let’s start off with the first type of content-rich profitable blog on the list:
1) Personal blog
Any blog that focuses on the author is considered a personal blog. It can be under their real name or an alias, e.g. MyName.com or MyAlias.net or TheHobbyMachine.xyz.
Personal blogs are perfect for anyone wanting to test the blogging waters:
- Want to learn how blogging works?
- Want to hone your content writing skills?
- Want to share something valuable with the world or just about anything under the sun?
This type of blog can cost nothing to set up. For beginners, you can blog on free blogging platforms sites like WordPress.com, Blogger.com, Medium, and more.
But if you want to be taken seriously, it’s important to use a self-hosted blogging platform like WordPress.org.
Hosting your website gives you the most flexibility and freedom to build your site exactly the way you want to.
You can build your own personal brand and gain recognition as an authority in your niche or industry!
Now, when it comes to hosting, I recommend Bluehost. I host my site with them and they’ve been fantastic web hosts so far! Support is awesome and you truly get value for your money.
Here’s one example of a successful personal blog
If you haven’t heard of Seth Godin, you’ll think he’s just some random person handing out advice or sharing his thoughts on a lot of things.
Nope, Seth is a big-time author and entrepreneur with a large audience, he even has his own Wikipedia page.
His blog looks clean and simple – just valuable content with no ads or pop-ups cluttering the page.
How does Seth’s personal blog earn money?
With more than 7,000 posts and 2 million words written, Seth’s blog is definitely one of the most successful in the world. And you can bet that he’s earning money even when he sleeps!
As you can see in the sidebar, he’s got links to his workshops, seminars, courses, and books. You can even hire him to speak at an event.
2) Affiliate blog
Any type of content blog can be an affiliate blog, really. Just insert affiliate links in your blog post and voila! You’ve got an affiliate blog.
But historically, affiliate blogs stemmed from niche sites that did product reviews.
These blogs typically publish posts like the “Best One Handed Toys for Kids Under 10” or “The Top 20 Crates for Dogs.”
They will compare and contrast the products, and they’ll insert affiliate links where these products can be purchased.
It’s a win-win: the reader gets a direct link to the specific product they want to buy (no more searching) AND the blogger gets a commission from the purchase!
Here is an example of a successful affiliate blog
This pet blog is all about dog food reviews. They feature buying guides and topics like the best dog foods, best puppy foods, best dry dog foods, best budget-friendly dog food, etc.
How does this affiliate marketing blog earn money?
The blog earns affiliate commission from Amazon and Chewy.com. There are no sneaky ads as far as I can tell – just tons of content pages giving valuable advice to dog owners!
If you’re interested in building an affiliate blog like this, check out my post on how to choose the best affiliate programs for beginners.
3) Tutorial blog
Tutorial blogs aim to educate their readers. Blogs like this help solve people’s problems.
Depending on the niche, this type of blog can also cross-over with personal blogs, professional blogs, or corporate blogs.
Most tutorial blogs don’t sell outright. Instead, they share valuable content – front and center – to gain their audience’s trust.
So, when they recommend a product or service that can help solve a specific problem, their audience follows their suggestions.
This can either be their own products and services or an affiliate product. Additionally, tutorial blogs may also display ads.
Here is an example of a successful tutorial blog
For anyone who wants to enter the world of gardening, GardeningKnowHow.com is a wonderful resource.
The blog offers a ton of tutorials on starting a garden, choosing the right plants, lawn care, composting, and more!
How does this tutorial blog earn money?
The blog earns money from direct advertising, sponsorships, display ads, and affiliate marketing.
They also have a very large audience (they get more than 160 million visitors a year), so I’m sure they’re earning a lot of money, too!
4) Professional services blog
Professional blogs aren’t for everyone, but if you’re looking for recognition, then starting a business blog like this is a great idea.
This is also a personal type of blog that will help you establish your authority and expertise in a particular industry.
Usually, for professional business blog, the end goal is lead generation, that is, you want potential clients to visit your site and get in touch with you.
For example, if you’re a designer or writer looking to get more clients, you can start a blog where you cover topics related to your field. This will help you come across as a helpful and knowledgeable person.
Of course, you can always sign up for job marketplaces and advertise your services there.
But blogging allows you to stand out from the pack. Think of your blog as a portfolio that you can share with potential clients and “wow” them with your expertise!
Here is an example of this type of blog
This is the blog of renowned British interior designer, Rita Konig.
She’s probably not looking for new clients anytime soon, but her site is a perfect example of how she sets herself apart from other interior designers.
Her website is tastefully designed and showcases various interior decorations. Perfect for inspiration if you’re thinking of redesigning your home!
How does her site earn money?
Aside from getting inquiries and potential clients from her site, she also sells an online course, workshops, and various merchandise.
5) Corporate niche blog
Companies – big and small alike – are getting on the blogging train.
Why? Because blogging helps increase brand awareness, establish credibility, attract new leads, and more importantly, it generates revenue!
If you work for – or own a business – that doesn’t have a blogging strategy in place yet, then you should definitely think about setting up this type of blog.
Here’s an example of a corporate blog that provides a lot of value to their readers
If you’re familiar with WordPress themes, then you’ve probably heard about Divi. It’s a very popular WordPress theme and visual page builder from Elegant Themes.
Elegant Themes has a team of in-house bloggers and guest bloggers who contribute to the blog’s massive success. They literally have thousands of business blogs going back to when they first started – 2008!
So, how does this corporate blog earn money?
Well, the blog drives tons of organic traffic from Google and social media. This leads to more people (their target audience) getting in their sales funnel and eventually buying their products and services!
6) Lifestyle blogs
A lifestyle blog is probably one of the most intimate and personal blogs there is.
It’s where you write about your life, your experiences, your favorite stuff, and more.
You talk about your latest adventures and challenges, and you add pictures and videos to help tell the story.
People usually follow lifestyle blogs because it allows them to peek into other people’s lives and get inspired.
That said, lifestyle bloggers usually pick a niche – fashion, hobbies, parenting, food, beauty, travel, or something along these lines.
Lifestyle blogs tend to do well on social media because of all the visuals, so don’t forget to share your blog posts there and ask your readers to do the same thing!
Here’s one good example of an awesome lifestyle blog
Caitlin’s blog is classy and tastefully designed. I love the pastel colors on her blog and her photos are simply amazing! So simple and yet so riveting – perfect for sharing on social media!
Her tips on everything from clothes to beauty, travel, and wellness are personal. She’s living the life, honestly.
So, how does her blog earn money?
She earns her dough from affiliate links and sponsorships. She’s got links to where you can buy the clothes she’s wearing and the products she’s promoting.
7) Health and fitness blogs
There will always be people wanting to lose weight or be healthier. The only problem with niche blogs like this is that there’s a lot of competition.
So, you really need to dig deep and find a sub-niche that isn’t too competitive.
For instance, if you’re just going to start a generic health blog, then you probably won’t stand a chance against all the old, super popular health blogs.
To succeed in this space, you need to create content that’s never been seen before. I know, it’s easier said than done.
But think outside the box – what kind of health and fitness secrets can you offer to the world that the world hasn’t seen before?
To give you an idea of what a successful blog in this space looks like, here’s one example
Elle Linton’s blog has been around since 2012. What makes her blog interesting is that she not only talks about health and fitness, but she does it from her own unique perspective.
So, how does Elle’s health & fitness blog earn money?
She has display ads on her site and affiliate links. She also sells on-demand video workouts and online classes. Plus, she also accepts sponsorships and is open to coaching both private and corporate clients.
8) Make money online blogs
There’s a lot of predatory niche blogs in this space. Scammy gurus and get rich quick schemes abound in the internet marketing space.
Separating the wheat from the chaff is an uphill battle, especially if you’re new and you don’t know the red flags.
Still, I can’t deny that this kind of blog is very profitable. And with a global pandemic going on right now, many people are looking to earn extra money, so there’s a lot of upside to entering this niche.
So, if you have actually made money online, then feel free to share your journey with the world!
Here’s one example of a wildly successful blog in this industry
Adam Enfroy is a successful blogger who teaches his audience how to do the same thing. As you can see in the screenshot, his blog gets more than half a million visitors every month.
And it’s no surprise, really. He writes massive in-depth blog posts, leaving no stone unturned!
So, how does Adam’s blog earn money?
Through display ads, affiliate links, and by selling digital products (courses). Check out his income reports – they are truly awe-inspiring! Anyone wanting to blog about – and succeed – in the MMO niche will do well to follow in this guy’s footsteps.
9) Personal development blogs
This is another evergreen niche with a large audience. People will always look for information to improve themselves.
You’ve probably searched for these topics – how to be more self-confident, how to think more positively, how to be a better person, be more outgoing, etc. These topics deal with self-improvement or personal development.
In this niche, however, there’s a lot of regurgitated content. You’ve probably noticed that too.
Here’s an example of a successful personal development blog
Mark’s site offers a breath of fresh air. He’s making the personal development space more entertaining thanks to his tongue-in-cheek style of writing content!
He doesn’t sugarcoat his words, so he’ll tell you exactly how it is. It may be offensive to some.
But I think his writing style is exactly why he’s different from other personal bloggers – and why more than a million of his audience flock to his site every month!
So, how does Mark’s blog earn money?
Well, he offers a subscription service where you get access to all of his online courses. Also, he has links to where you can buy his published books.
10) Relationship and dating blogs
Well, it’s a human thing, isn’t it? Love and companionship, relationships and dating.
These types of blogs give advice on how to find “the one” or how to plan the perfect wedding or how to keep the romance alive if you’ve been married for a decade.
Blogs on breakups and divorce also fall in this category.
Here’s an example of a niche blog in this industry
Gideon Hanekom’s tagline tells you exactly what you’re going to get from his site – relationship advice!
He’s a professional counselor and relationship coach from New Zealand.
Judging by the content on his site, this guy walks the talk. He’s happily married and in a credible position to actually give dating and relationship advice.
So, how does Gideon’s site earn money?
He sells ebooks and a couple of online courses. He also offers professional relationship coaching.
Now, what type of blog should you start?
It depends on you and where your interests lie. Blogging isn’t a walk in the park, you’ll need to commit to it if you want to succeed. And it’s hard to commit to something you’re not passionate about!
It’s difficult to generate content when you don’t know what you’re saying.
If you want to establish yourself as an authority in your niche, then it’s better to pick something you’re actually passionate about.
And if you’ve noticed in the examples above, you’re not limited to sticking to one kind of blog.
Figure out your angle on how you can stand out from the crowd and start from there!
A quick summary of monetization strategies for the different types of blogs
Once you’ve set up a niche blog, you can start monetizing it.
Now, not all will be available to you right away, but this will at least give you an idea of how you can earn money from your new blog.
Here are the different monetization strategies used by the example personal and business blogs we covered today:
- Affiliate marketing (want to start here? check my guide on how to start affiliate marketing from scratch)
- Display ads
- Selling your skills as a service – writing, web design, graphic design, coaching
- Selling your own product, e.g. books, courses, merchandise
- Membership or subscription
- Lead generation
Now that you know what types of blogs can generate income, it’s time to take action and build one yourself.
You’ve made it this far, you can take it to the next level! Use the blogging examples I’ve shared in this post to inspire you.
If you have any questions for me, drop a comment below. Thank you for reading.