Monday, May 17, 2010

monetize your blog?

Since moving my blog to this place, I've been invited to consider "monetizing" it; that is, to somehow earn money by adding links to commercial sites (such as Amazon and Ebay) and getting money -- we're talking cents, probably -- everytime someone clicks on these links from my blog.
Sweetie says I could actually make a little money doing this. "Lots of people read your blog, after all."

But would they then click on an icon for a commercial site? Not necessarily.

More importantly, would I -- someone who has a troubled relationship with retail to begin with -- want to encourage more conspicuous consumption by adding such links to my formerly non-commercial site?

I'd like to hear from readers who've "monetized" their blogs. How has it worked for you?


lynnef said...

talk to Kent P. He monetizes. I ignore that part altogether.

alex wetmore said...

I don't like making money off of my friends who read my blog. I think any earnings would be tiny anyway.

Daniel Yuhas said...

I do the Amazon link thing - whenever there's a book I want to talk about (or a book I'm in) I'll link to a "refer this book" page instead of the regular Amazon. It's pretty inconspicuous that way but certainly not lucrative - I think I've made maybe thirty bucks of play money over the last two years.

bikelovejones said...

I think the more I consider this, the more likely I am to avoid monetizing. It feels out of line with my values and my concerns about unchecked consumerism; and well, don't we all shop enough as it is anyway?
I'll keep my blog ad-free.
Thanks for your thoughts.

Kent Peterson said...

Yep, I made the monetize move years ago and I've always tried to be totally straight up about it. I try to make very clear where I have some financial stake in something and I think readers appreciate that.

But I'm always about having things of interest on my blog and I'm absolutely fine and totally expect that a vast majority of folks will do what lynnef does and ignore that part altogether. But the money end of things does let me do work I enjoy and value (like working at non-profits or small bike shops) and still be able to get out for somewhat grand adventures. As you well know, Beth, I get by with a lot of help from my friends.

Knowing you, I really think you are more comfortable and at peace with a non-monetized blog and that's great. I will continue with my model of giving away a vast majority of my writing, pictures, thoughts and stories but providing various ways for people to send some monetary support my way if they choose.

I'm not making a Stephen-King-load of money (or even a FatCyclist-load of $ off my blog) but it helps fund the adventures and keep the whole thing going. On the rare occasions where I start to build up a bit of a surplus, I find a good cause like Mercy Corps, Livestrong or some down on his luck friend to send a few bucks to. I like to think it does some good and it least it keeps me from feeling like Gordon Gecko.

And BTW congrats on your super commuter status. Those Planet Bike folks couldn't have picked a better role model.

bikelovejones said...

Thanks! Being selected as a "super" commuter was a lovely surprise and I had a nice chat with the folks at Planet Bike.

I am happy with non-monetization (izzat a woid?) so far. There are other ways for me to keep body and soul together.

Looking forward to hearing about your upcoming great Divide exploits. Happy riding!