As a blogger you will have to set realistic expectations, the truth is that most blogs will be abandoned way before they make $500. There are way too many people wanting to earn X amount of money after just a couple of months of blogging, and most of them will not achieve it. The main problem is that there are way too many snake oil salesmen promising people that they can make a full time living after just a couple of weeks.
Generally speaking, it will take you around 12-16 months to make $500 per month, although the time period also depends on the niche, competition, google sandbox period, what is the user intent, how you monetize your blog, what kind of content you write, how much traffic you have and even some luck.
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I have been a blogger since 2007, I worked in a lot of niches, and trust me things are not that simple. Nobody can guarantee that your blog will make $500, or even come close to it because there are a lot of variations that you have to consider. A lot of people fall in the trap of SEO courses, which most of them are completely useless, the SEO guru isn’t making money from SEO but he is from selling his course.
The only thing which is necessary for your blog to make money is traffic, without traffic you will not make any money. The problem is that a lot of people invest a lot of money in how their website looks and just wait to see when the site will start making money, odds are that it will never make any money. You have probably already heard that content is King, which it actually is, the type of content you have on your site will determine what kind of visitors come to your site.
The good news is that there are some niches and industries where you do not need a lot of traffic to make $500 or even more per month, the problem with these niches is that they are extremely competitive and even if you write high-quality articles it will still take you a fairly long time to rank. If you are wondering when you should publish your website then check out my recent article When should I publish my Website? ( Top 9 Step Checklist ).
The first and most important factor which determines how long will it take you to make $500 per month or even more is the niche. Some niches are extremely profitable while others are less so, and you have to figure out what kind of niche you want to target and how will you actually monetize it. The problem is that a lot of people go into extremely competitive niches like pets, for example, a couple of years ago these were low competition niches, today however they are extremely saturated.
Don’t get me wrong you can still make a lot of money even in the pet niche, and generally speaking where there is competition there is a lot of money to be made. However, there are a lot of obscure niches that will still achieve your goal of making $500 per month in a short period of time. If you make a website in a low competition niche than you will find that your website will rank faster and you will start earning as soon as you get some traffic. If you are wondering if you should buy a ready-made Amazon affiliate website then check out my recent article Ready-made amazon affiliate website ( Worth it? ).
While most would say that earning $500 a month from a blog is easy, but odds are that people who claim this have never made a website in their life. A lot of SEO gurus tend to throw around numbers like $10k per month after a couple of months, and this is why a lot of beginners tend to think that $500 per month should be easy. Smart bloggers who target high competition niches tend to focus on low competition keywords, this way they carve out a space for them in the niche.
However there are some niches where the competition is way too high, like health, finance, and fitness, unless you have some credentials you will have an extremely hard time getting any traction in these niches. I am not saying you can’t make money in these, but it will take you a long time before you will see any kind of results.
Google sandbox period
Every new blog has a sandbox period, the length of this period is different in every niche, although generally speaking the sandbox period is around 6-8 months. While your website is in the sandbox period it will not rank and will get very little traffic if any at all. Most gurus will simply say that the sandbox period is a myth because they are selling methods which in theory will make you thousands of dollars per month after a short period of time.
The truth is that the sandbox period exists, and SEO gurus which are saying that they can bypass it or that it doesn’t exist tend to sell some kind of super uber duper ranking or affiliate marketing method, don’t fall for it.
What the intent of the user is when it comes to your site will determine how much money you will make. This is why so many people make Amazon review websites, they are fairly easy money although the competition tends to be high. When to user goes to an Amazon review website his or her intent is to get more information about a certain product, right before they buy it, and this is why Amazon affiliate websites tend to make so much money.
Buyer intent keywords are the most profitable ones in any niche, and these tend to be the most competitive keywords in every give niche or industry. If you are writing informational posts than you will rank faster as there is less competition for it, the problem is that you will earn significantly less money than you would with a buyer intent keyword.
How you monetize your website will determine how much money will your website make and how soon will it get you to the $500 per month goal. There are a lot of ways on how you can actually monetize your blog, although the most popular ones are display ads and affiliate products. For every kind of monetization, you will need some traffic, the more traffic you have the more money you will make.
If you are planning to make $500 just with Adsense then you need a lot of traffic to get to this goal. Generally speaking, Adsense pays around $1 per 1000 page views, this means that you will need 500k page views per month to make $500. Although this also depends on the niche which you are targeting. There are some ad networks that work with Adsense and they pay a lot more, I mean around $10-$50 per 1000 page views, such networks are Ezoic, Mediavine, and AdThrive.
If you are targeting affiliate products, digital, or physical than you will earn a commotion with each sale. There are some affiliate offers that will give you a commotion for every single purchase a user has made after he or she signed up with your affiliate link.
What kind of content you write, how long the content is, and how helpful it is will also determine how much money you will make. Generally speaking, the more time a user stays on your website the more money you will earn and this is true even for display ads. A lot of people think that users need to click on an ad to earn money, although with Adsense this is true but there are a lot of networks that will credit you if the user has seen the ad for at least 15 seconds.
If you write high quality and engaging content than users will stay more on your website and they will check out other sections of your website as well and thus making you more money. The single most important thing on which you have to focus as a blogger is content, without content there is no traffic and no money to be made, so write as many articles as you can and make sure that they are high-quality articles.
Traffic + content = money, the more content you have the more traffic you will get. The problem is that most bloggers do not write enough content, they tend to create a blog and write 10 articles and call it a blog. The problem with this approach is that it isn’t working, blogs with 10 posts are considered fairly small, and google tends to favor authority over new websites. The more content you have the higher your authority is in google’s eyes.
The good news is that how you will monetize your current traffic will be the deciding factor, some niches do not need a lot of traffic to make $500 while others need a lot of traffic to come even close to that number. For example, the credit card niche is extremely competitive, although if a user signs up to a trial you could earn $50-$100 and you don’t need a lot of traffic to get a couple of signups.
Generally speaking, most of these high paying affiliate offers tend to convert at around 1%, so you will need around 100 traffic per month to have a signup or 1000 traffic per month to make $500. This was just an extremely simplified example, but you get the point. The traffic to your website doesn’t have to come only from google, social media can also drive a lot of traffic, for more information check out my recent article How to get traffic from Reddit without getting banned? ( In 9 Steps ).
You will definitely need some luck to make any kind of money online, the good news is that you can make your own luck. If your blog is in an industry which can make you a lot of money than with some luck you can have a slice of the action. Let me tell you a short story about a friend of mine, back in 2013 he had a blog which was monetized with CPA, he was fairly new to blogging and CPA, I mean he started 3 months earlier.
But something happened and he found a way to increase his conversions, he literally went overnight from earning $10 per day to $2000 per day, and yes that was not a typo. He managed to earn around $2000-$3000 per day for almost 2 years, after which the competition has destroyed him. Although he made close to 2 million dollars in that time, and that is definitely a life-altering amount of money. Although this is a nice success story, but the truth is that for every person who is successful with blogging there are 100x more bloggers who fail, so do not rely on luck too much.
Making $500 per month with bogging is not that easy, I know that every SEO guru on youtube will tell you that $500 a month can be achieved by everybody. The truth is that you need traffic to your website, and how much traffic your website has will determine how much money you make. Ranking on Google is not that simple, there are a lot of updates and even if you have done nothing wrong you might still get slapped by an update.