4 Super Simple Steps to Turn Your Hobby Blog into a Business Blog

4 Super Simple Steps to Turn Your Hobby Blog into a Business Blog

So you have a blog but it is more of a hobby than a business right? Or maybe you have a business blog but you treat it like a hobby? (Raising hand)

I know exactly what you are talking about. In the summer of 2017, I started a blog and my goal was to just have it ready to launch in the fall.

On September 1, 2017, I reached my goal and launched my blog. I was so excited! I finally reached one of my long-time goals to have a blog.

Well then, the holidays came in like a whirlwind and the next thing I knew it was the end of December!

Between all the holidays and all of our family’s birthdays that fall in October, November, and December, it just flew by!

So, here I was with my new blog that was now four months old and hadn’t changed much in those four months.

mom blog from home

Over the summer I had poured my heart into it but I let it go over the fall. I jumped back in at the beginning of the year in January 2018. I added a new opt-in and implemented Tailwind and Pinterest.

The traffic came ROLLING in! I couldn’t believe it! It almost felt too easy! I later learned I was right. It was too easy. I couldn’t replicate it again… because I wasn’t treating my blog like a business.

Set Backs

I was offered a job at the Church Preschool and they badly needed help so I decided to take it and I worked from February to May as a Lead Teacher. It was a wonderful time, but I bet you can guess what happened to my blog.

Yep, it was pushed off and the traffic went with it.

I told myself “Okay, I am going to work on it all summer and get it back up and going”.

Well, being home with my daughter over the summer was great but trying to entertain an 8-year-old who doesn’t play pretend by herself anymore was a struggle.

It was either let her sit in front of a device all day or let friends come over and then it was loud and crazy.

We would go to the pool, go out on the boat, do all kinds of summer fun things, but once more my blog got pushed back.

I felt like I had to focus on her and since I was home I tried hard to keep all the housework taken care of so my husband who works long hard hours didn’t have to worry about anything when he got home.

At the end of the summer, my husband and I decided that I would stay home once she started school back up and I could work full time on my blog. (I know isn’t he the best!)

I do help out some of the neighborhood parents and get their kids on and off the bus to make a little extra money. I also watch one little girl twice a week.

Plus, I have all my house chores. Which since my husband is being so sweet to let me chase my dreams, I do make those a priority, so he doesn’t have to stress about a messy house after a stressful day at work.

BUT I now have technically all the time I need to work on my blog!

So how can I turn my clear hobby blog into a business? And how can you? With these 4 Super Simple Steps!

Hobby Blog to Business Blog - mom blog from home
Hobby Blog to Business Blog - mom blog from home

Hobby Blog to Business Blog - mom blog from home

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1. TIME

Make it more of a priority. Make time for your blog.

If you want to turn your hobby blog into a business, then you need to treat it like a business. Like it is your job (because it is).

You may not need to work on it 8 hours a day like a real job and thank goodness for that! But you do need to make progress on it daily!

Here is a post I wrote on how to easily find time to blog!

And here is a post on how to stay focused and create more content.

This post walks you through how to not waste time on your blog but actually make progress on your blog (aka writing blog posts not just post on social media).

I love to learn so I could spend all day every day watching videos on how to blog but then when it comes down to actually putting those steps into action I seem to always struggle to finish.

I have shiny objective syndrome or bunny hole syndrome. Maybe it’s a fear of rejection. “What if someone doesn’t like it? I know! I just won’t put it out there and then no one can hate it!” But that’s obviously a bad idea.

So, whether you want to or not, whether you feel like it or not. Make it a priority that you work on it every day. If it is only 30 minutes a day then that’s fine! At least you are working on it!

The more you put into it the more you will get out!

Maybe you aren’t like me and you don’t struggle with that part. Maybe you have a successful blog, but it just doesn’t make any money yet.

So, you want to turn your successful hobby blog into a successful business blog. Well, I can still help!

See I am knowledgeable about this all (remember I love to learn and take courses on all this) so I can help walk you through what you need to do to monetize your blog.

I think that’s the frustrating part for me. I know all this stuff I just need to do it! (me kicking myself)

That is why I am drawing a line in the sand and I am saying no more. From now on I am going to treat it like a business!

I am going to work on writing blog posts and helping my readers reach their goals!

Get out of your comfort zone

comfort zone

I think that’s a major part of this too. We are still in our comfort zones and we like it that way.

But staying in our comfort zones isn’t going to get us very far though is it?

We need to push ourselves and get out of our comfort zones!

For me, I don’t like making videos.

It is easy for me to think all these things to say but the second I push record my mind goes blank!

I know videos are an important part of blogging, so it is something I have to push past!

I have seen other very successful bloggers do not so great videos and it just shows that they are human just like all of us but for some reason, it is a major hurdle for me.

What are your weaknesses?

Do you struggle with…

  • organization?
  • time management?
  • content creation?
  • procrastination?
  • Creating images?
  • Promoting your posts?
  • Creating videos?

Find your weakness and do that one first. Focus solely on your weakness and work on it. Or maybe you have the funds and are able to outsource your weakness.

If you struggle with balancing housework and your blog, then hire someone to help you clean your house.

I am not to that point yet, but I want to be!

mom blog from home

2. SOLVE A PROBLEM

To turn your hobby blog into a business you need to be helpful for your readers. They are looking for an answer to their problem.

Help them find a solution to their problem.

Whether that be a course you created to solve it, an affiliate product that will solve it, or maybe you just provide the answer and that traffic to your blog brings in ad revenue.

Solving their problem will also create trust between you and your readers. They will come back for more. Knowing you helped them last time they will trust you can help them again.

Also, they are more likely to share your blog with their friends that have the same problem you solved.

3. MONETIZE

There are several ways you can monetize your blog. If your blog is a hobby blog and you aren’t monetizing your blog yet, but you have consistent traffic then all you have to do is add the following to capitalize off of your traffic:

  1. Ads
  2. Affiliate links
  3. Sponsored Posts
  4. Products

Ads

Ads or advertisements can be placed on your blog and the advertiser will pay you for it. You get paid based off of the amount of traffic that sees the ad and by how many people click on that ad.

For more information on ads on your blog, I suggest this eBook by Victoria Pruett called Make Money Blogging at any level.

She has successfully grown her blog about life on her homestead to making over $8,000 a month!

She has updated her income several times so I have noticed that it says a different number depending on where you look on her blog but the last email she sent me she told me $8,000 and that was months ago! So it is most likely more now.

A large portion of her income comes from ads! She goes into detail in her ebook.

Affiliate Links

Adding affiliate links are links that take your reader to a product by someone else and if they purchase that product you receive compensation for that sale.

So, for example, the eBook above that I mentioned is an affiliate link. I read that book and really found it helpful, so I signed up for Victoria’s affiliate program.

Now if anyone clicks on that link and purchases her eBook through my link, she will pay me for that sale.

I have heard of other affiliate programs that pay out differently and not only on purchases but that is definitely the main way to earn an affiliate commission.

Amazon

Amazon is a great affiliate example. They were able to grow so big off of affiliate sales. Bloggers put links on their blogs to products off of Amazon and when a reader clicks on that link and makes a purchase then that blogger gets a cut of that sale.

Here is a great resource to learn some awesome tips for making money with Amazon! I had the pleasure of being a test reader for Dale for this ebook and I am so glad I had that opportunity! It seriously is packed with awesome tips and tricks to making the most of Amazon’s affiliate program.

She has some amazing insight and it is definitely worth the small investment for all of the time you will save and shortcuts she gives you to get right into making money with affiliate marketing.

I thought I knew it all and I have even purchased and taken Michelle Gardner’s Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing which is also a great course but it does come with a price tag.

Although since Michelle makes over $100,000 PER MONTH on her blog she does know what she is talking about!

But even after reading everything I have read over the years and taking many courses (course junkie remember) Dale’s ebook Amazon Affiliate Affluence was packed with new and helpful information!

mom blog from home

Sponsored Posts

A sponsored blog post is when you receive payment for posting a blog post on your blog. Either you or the sponsor can write the post that you will then put on your blog. I personally haven’t dabbled much in the sponsored posts area so I suggest checking out McKinzie’s post on How to Make Money Blogging with Sponsored Posts.

Products

Adding your own products to your blog is another way to earn money off of your blog.

If your blog is all about baking cakes, then you could create a course or write an eBook that combines all your knowledge into one convenient place. People will pay to get the quickest answer.

Just like the affiliate ebooks I previously mentioned. I would rather pay $20-$50 bucks and get the answers right now that I know will work than search through all of their blog posts trying to piece it together myself.

Your readers could read all of your blog posts and try and put the pieces of the puzzles together on their own but if you offered an easy and convenient course or eBook that will walk them directly through it, most people would just pay the $10-$100 to get the answer now.

It depends on how in-depth you make your course or eBook as to the price you want to sell it for.

I have seen courses go for hundreds of dollars. If it is your first one, then I would suggest to not make it too big and not have it cost too much.

Just to test out your audience and see how they respond. You could even ask them what they think about some different course ideas and also how much they would be willing to pay for it.

Get some feedback and maybe offer them a discount or a free copy for their feedback!

Once you have gotten your feet wet with adding one or all of those options then you can focus on using your email list to your advantage and selling to them.

You can make sales sequences for them to go through to warm them up before trying to sell to them.

You can also create a sales funnel for them to go to. Those are all things you can focus on later once you have gotten the first step done.

Focus on adding ads, affiliate links, sponsored posts and/or products to your blog and start treating it like a job and before you know it, it will be a business bringing in an income for you!

4. Consistency

Here is what will set your blog apart from Hobby Blog to Business Blog. Just like I have said before you have to make it a priority. Part of that is staying consistent.

It is important to not only stay consistent to show Google that you are a serious blogger but it is good for you to stay in a routine with your blog.

If you take a long break in between working on your blog you will come back to it and be completely lost where you left off. You will end up spending all of your time catching back up on where you left off.

Then if you go another long break again you are once more in the same boat of trying to remember what you were going to do next.

Stay consistent. Make a schedule and stick to it! This will improve your productivity and efficiency.

Summed up

Those are the 4 super simple ways to turn your hobby blog into a business blog!

What kind of blog do you have?

I would love to feature your mommy blog on my blog! Get Featured Here!

Happy blogging!

Vanessa

Make Money on Your Blog by Creating Your Own Products

Make Money on Your Blog by Creating Your Own Products

There are so many different ways to use your blog to bring in an income. One of those ways is to create and sell your own products.

You can use your blog to showcase your products.

Maybe you already have products you make that you want to share with the world or maybe you have a blog and want to create online products to put on it.

Either way, the possibilities are endless!

Make Money on Your Blog by Creating Your Own Products - Mom Blog From Home

Make Money on Your Blog by Creating Your Own Products - mom blog from home
Make Money on Your Blog by Creating Your Own Products - mom blog from home

Mom Blog From Home may earn a commission for purchases made after clicking links on this page. Learn More.

You can sell a physical product or a digital online product.

Physical products would include things such as a t-shirt, an ornament, wall décor, furniture, clothing, etc!

Digital online products would be things like an ebook, a course, a PDF, a file, a worksheet, a chart, a guide, a booklet, and so on! Literally, the possibilities are endless!

mom blog from home

Here are some ideas of products you can create and use your blog to promote.

List of possible products

Tangible products

  • T-Shirts
  • Wall décor
  • Furniture
  • Dog clothes
  • Baby clothes
  • Baby bows
  • Blankets
  • Jewelry
  • Endless options!

 

Digital Online Products

  • Printables
  • Calendars
  • Guides
  • Charts
  • Courses
  • Ebooks
  • Coaching
  • Training
  • Teaching

Endless options!

The list just keeps going. If you can imagine it, you can create and sell it on your blog!

mom blog from home

So, why would you want to create your own products? Here are some pros and cons of creating and promoting your own products instead of someone else’s.

Pros

  • Express yourself
  • Set your own price/choose your own worth
  • Creative outlet
  • Create your own brand of products
  • Digital or physical
  • Run your own specials, discounts, and giveaways
  • Be self-sufficient

 

Cons

  • You have to put in more work
  • You have to handle all transactions and refunds
  • You have to handle unsatisfied customers and bad reviews
  • “one man show”
  • You are in charge of promoting your own products

 

Pros outweigh the cons

In my opinion, the pros outweigh the cons by far! So, you have to put in a little more work? So, what? The fact that you are the one that is creating your own products that you are promoting on your own blog is an amazing feeling.

That said, if you are new to blogging you may not be ready to sell your own products just yet. So, promoting other products that you believe in is still a great way to bring in an income.

mom blog from home

Sell your own online products

However, selling your own online products is where the bigger bucks come into play.

You can make pennies with ads and you can make dollars with affiliate marketing but selling your own online products puts you in charge of how much you make.

With affiliate marketing, you don’t have to create any products but the highest you will probably make per sale is 40%. Maybe 50% if you are lucky!

However, selling your own online products you are able to make 100% of the profit! All you have to do is pay for the hosting of your online products but that’s it! And there are probably ways to host it yourself for free with a plugin or something.

I have my own digital online products and they are hosted on Teachable and I have to pay Teachable monthly and per sale, but it is a small amount. I get almost all of the profit per sale.

But this way I know that my online products are handled with a trusted company that is going to be secure for my readers and myself.

It is a bit different if your products are tangible. There are more factors involved in that such as materials, tax, and shipping. But you are more likely to sell your product to more people if you are able to reach a new online audience.

As for online products, there is less cost and physical work involved since you don’t have to physically make anything. Here is why I like to use Teachable for my digital online products.

Why I Chose Teachable

Set your own price

You are able to set the amount you want to sell it for!

Maybe you feel your knowledge is worth $100 per sale, then you can put that as your price! Maybe you think that it’s worth $10 and you hope more people buy it at a lower price. That’s your choice as well!

Run sales and promotions

If you choose to sell a digital online product and you go through Teachable, they have an option to offer a discount on your products.

This makes it easy for you to run sales for your online products. You can offer a discount as a promotion, a prize, or a holiday special! You are not always able to do that when promoting someone else’s product.

It would be something that you would need to ask permission on first from the creator of that product.

There are different options you are able to choose as well on how you want to offer that discount on your online product.

  • You can choose if you want a percentage or flat rate discount.
  • Choose whether there is a specific end date or have it end after a certain number of units are sold.
  • There is an option to set different codes to offer different discount amounts. So you could set one code to give readers one amount or percentage off and another code to do a different amount or percentage off.

Then depending on what your criteria are, certain readers would receive the higher discount code and some the lower discount code. This just gives you more options on promotions you want to run.

mom blog from home

Affiliates for Your Products

Plus, you are able to offer your own affiliate program and have other bloggers sign up to promote your online products!

This way not only can you make more money selling your own online product you can make sales from your affiliates too!

When you sign up for Teachable you can set up a “school” where all of your courses are.

From there you can decide whether you want to make a reader who is requesting to be an affiliate, an affiliate to your entire school and all of your courses or just an affiliate to one certain course.

Secure

One of the main reasons that I love Teachable is that I know it is safe. Some of the biggest names in the blogging world use Teachable.

Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income, Melyssa Griffin from melyssagriffin.com, and of course Suzi from Start a Mom Blog all use Teachable.

Pat Flynn - Teachable

Those folks wouldn’t just put their names on any product. They use and promote Teachable so I know that is the best option for me as well!

More Than Just Courses

You may be thinking that Teachable is just for courses. It actually can be used for more. You just have to think outside the box just a little.

Courses

First, yes it does work for courses. You can set up a curriculum and have your readers go through your course.

eBooks

Second, you can have it just be for your eBook. Maybe you want all of your teachings to be all on the same place and make it easy for them to find all you have to offer.

You can set up a “course” that is titled as an eBook and then once they purchase and log into that “course” it will consist of one lesson and that contains a PDF file of the eBook.

Now you can keep your eBooks and your courses altogether in one spot.

You can even go a bit further and have a welcome video thanking them personally for purchasing your eBook and instructing them on how to download the PDF file containing the eBook.

Opt-Ins

The third option is you could use it for free opt-ins for your readers. I offer a Free Pinterest Image Course in my Teachable School where I show students how to create Pinterest Images for their blogs.

This course is free so it is a freebie that I offer on my blog.

When a reader enrolls in the free course they are now synced and added to my email list with Convertkit. Then the reader is able to log in to my Teachable School and take the free course!

Then lastly, another option that I use Teachable for is my Feature Plans. I have an option on my blog to get featured on Mom Blog From Home. There are different package options to choose from such as if you just want to have your blog bio and image featured alongside other mom bloggers then it is free!

If you want to have access to other perks like our Private Facebook Group, your feature going out to my email list, adding a product link, or even adding an affiliate product link then you can purchase one of those packages that contain those perks.

The reader will be taken to my Teachable School and they will make the purchase from there. Then they will open the “course” and it contains a PDF will all of the information on how to submit their information for their feature.

It walks them through how to join the Private Facebook Group and even gives them a special “Featured On” image so they can add that to their blog!

This is a way I can use the platform that I have my other courses on too and keep all of my online products together in one place for my readers. It is also thinking outside the box and using it for more than just courses!

Integrates with most email marketing providers

Teachable integrates with most email marketing providers so you can keep everything tracking altogether. If a reader signs up for one of your courses and you are worried that you don’t have them added to your list because they didn’t sign up through an opt-in, then don’t worry!

Since Teachable integrates with email services then it will sync and add that reader that purchased your product from Teachable to your email list!

I use Convertkit as my email provider and it syncs perfectly with Teachable.

Then I have it set up within Convertkit to tag the subscriber with what online product they purchase so I don’t bother that reader with information on any specials running for that online product because they already purchased it.

This just helps keep my list organized and easy to track which readers have purchased which online products.

mom blog from home

How to sell your own products

There is an array of different platforms you can use to sell your own products whether they are tangible or digital. Here are some of those platforms where you can sell your own products.

It depends on the product that you want to sell and your own preference as to which platform to use. For instance, if you like to handmake crafty things then I would suggest Etsy. Etsy is geared more towards the crafty/artsy/ DIY crowd.

If you want to sell digital products such as an online course, then, of course, I would suggest Teachable.

It really is up to you and which one suits you best. Here are some things to think about before choosing one.

  • Do they charge you monthly, per sale, or both?
  • Do they accept all major credit cards?
  • Can they help handle returns and exchanges?
  • Are they a secure site that your customers will feel comfortable using?
  • Is it user-friendly on both your end with setting up the store and your customers end on buying the product?
  • Do they help you with SEO and getting customers to your site?

Imagine how you want your store to look and make sure that is what that particular site will be able to offer you.

Everyone has their own style and what comes easily to one may not to another. Do your research and find what works best for you!

Where to Start

Here is a guide to help you get started on which products to create and where you should host them!

mom blog from home

Like I said before, creating products may not be for you at this time if you are a new blogger. You can focus on promoting other people’s products and just be an affiliate.

But, I do suggest later on to start creating your own products and making more money per sale.

Don’t forget to make sure whether you are an affiliate or you are creating your own products to add them to Pinterest and help get traffic to those products!

Learn how to drive Pinterest traffic to your blog or products right here!

Happy blogging!

Vanessa

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