Make More Money Online By Diversifying Income Streams

by Robb Sutton

Scouring the web…you are going to find everyone’s 2 cents on how they think you should make money on your blog. While there are a ton of great ideas out there, there is also a lot of crap that you have to sift through to find the good stuff…and many times…the people talking about making money online actually do not make a cent. They are just trying to make money online by talking about making money online. Kind of redundent and not credible if you ask me…but if it is your cup of tea…go for it I guess. Anyways…after that short ramble…I am going to tell you how I actually make money online and it is through a simple business principle of diversification.

Make More Money Online By Diversifying Income Streams

As a blogger, you have a lot of different outlets to bring in income. In all reality, you have more options than brick and mortar businesses as you can adapt and change on the fly with very little overhead cost associated with that change. For that reason, you are seeing a lot of bloggers start to make a killing by staying on top of trends and backing their blog with solid business models. So let’s take a look at how you can make money on your blog…

  • PPC campaigns – Adsense, etc.
  • CPM – Pay per impression campaigns
  • Direct Advertising Campaigns
  • Affiliate Revenue – Get paid a percentage for promoting a product or service
  • Our Own Products – Electronic, Hard Goods, Services

Now…these are not the only ways you can make money on your blog, but they are the most popular as they typically give you the biggest return on your time investment. Most bloggers tend to lean heavily towards one method or only use the one they got to pick them up a couple of bucks. Guess what?! I believe that is a bad thing and I am about to tell you why.

Why You Do Not Want To Be Reliant On One Income Stream

When you are reliant on one type of income stream, you are crippling your chances of success if something happens to that method of making money online.

  • With PPC campaigns…payouts can fluctuate.
  • With CMP’s…you can lose advertisers or rates can decrease.
  • With Direct Advertising Campaigns…you can lose advertisers or rates can decrease.
  • With Affiliate Revenue…you can hit a soft spot in the economy or run out of products to promote.
  • With Your Own Products…you get a nice initial wave of income, but you have to create more products down the road.

Each of these circumstances can drastically change your business plan or just be a minor bump in the road. As you take a look at your blog, you need to ask yourself one quick question.

What would happen to my revenue if my #1 main income stream went away tomorrow?

If that question sends you into a worrying tailspin and makes the color leave your face, you need to take a objective look at how your blog is generating revenue and start to diversify your income streams.

Why Diversification?

My plan from day one when I started blogging was to build up as many income streams that work as possible. By having multiple sources all bringing in income, I am not reliant on one source of dollars coming into my sites. There have been times when companies dropped their affiliate programs or I needed to put my own products on hold that I was not worried about the bills because the rest of the streams picked up the slack.

When you start to take an objective look at really successful blogs online, are they reliant on one income stream or multiple? 9 times out of 10, you are probably interacting with all of their streams (or at least most of them) and do not even know it! By mixing in as many of the methods above as you can (use only the ones that work of course…and you figure this out by testing them), you can increase your chances of success for the long haul and not have to worry if something doesn’t quite go your way one day. A Personal Example

On, I have my own products, direct advertising, affiliate revenue and PPC campaigns that all pull their weight to achieve the ultimate goal…make an income online.

  • Ramped Riding – eBook that makes you a better mountain biker
  • Adsense – PPC
  • Direct Advertising
  • Affiliate Revenue – Heavily product based through reviews
  • Sale of Goods – All of that product I review has to go somewhere!

Each day, these income streams interact with my readers in a non-competing atmosphere (ex. I don’t promote other “Riding Tips” eBooks because I have my own.) that creates results.

I also diversify the methods in which my readers interact with my money making avenues by providing on page resources and a quality newsletter to back it up. By diversifying your income streams and the methods your readers interact with those income streams, you are creating a system that will work on its own.

Now…Look At Your Blogging…

Now, you have seen a glimpse into how I do it…how do you? It is time to take an objective look at how your blog makes money. Are you doing everything you can to insure your success? Or are you just winging it and hoping for the best?

Successful blogging from a monetary standpoint takes careful planning and testing. Far too many bloggers just publish articles and hope for the best. If you really want to make a living online, you have to attack it with a solid plan and proper testing. Once you have found one that works, continue fine tuning it while you get another revenue stream up and running…

Side Note: If you haven’t already, you MUST HAVE  an email newsletter on your blog to really see success over time. Sign up with a service like Aweber and get started with your newsletter today. It will make the difference from being successful and just another blogger who didn’t make it. Invest in your future.


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Dev | Technshare May 27, 2010 - 8:15 am

Wow.. Awesome post buddy and great tips too. !!
“what if your one income stream went away tomorrow”.. exactly right bro. Diversification is very important to one who is making money online…:D
Thanks for sharing this great post.

Rhys May 27, 2010 - 8:16 am

Agreed. In my spreadsheet that I track everything in, I have a “% of income” column, and try to make sure any one revenue stream is less than 20% of total income.

Is quite nice at the moment, as there’s only one red mark at the moment. It’s also my best performing month ever 🙂

Richard Scott May 27, 2010 - 3:32 pm

Excellent post. I have companies send me products for review, but then I always send them back. I need to use them for selling or promotion or contest give-a-ways. 🙂 Your bike site is sweet. Good job on setting up a variety of topics, reviews and ways to make money. Always an inspiration.

Mike Crimmins May 30, 2010 - 1:01 pm

This post is really making me look at the different income stream I’m using. I’m working towards my own product, but I could probably tighten up my plans in other areas.

Jasmine Henry from J Station X June 6, 2010 - 7:35 pm

Not only does it help to diversify the income stream, but to make them as unique as possible. For example, everyone uses PPC ads as a source of revenue and so the probability of you raking in the cash is slimmer. Though if you choose to make money from doing paid reviews, that can be better in the long run as with a blog with fairly modest traffic, advertisers can pay you for your opinions which won’t dry up and as long as your traffic stays the same or improves, it can be long-standing. And on top of that, your opinion is unique to anyone else’s so there’s no way the client can pay someone else for the review that only you can give them.

Bridging The Blogging Gap Between A Hobby And A Business | Robb Sutton dot com August 24, 2010 - 7:52 am

[…] ways to promote growth in those areas.You will have to look into producing your own products and diversify income streams.You will have to listen to the needs of your customers (readers and subscribers) to start filling […]


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