Writing for Your Wealth

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Why Google Adsense is a Perfect Way for Writers to Make Money

August 14th, 2008 · 13 Comments

The first dollar I ever made online came from Adsense (the first 93 cents came from Amazon, but that’s a different story), and Adsense continues to make up a large portion of my overall income, so this blog post is undoubtedly biased. You’ve been warned. Let’s get on with it!

Google Adsense can be a winner for anyone who wants to build wealth and enjoys writing.

You may eventually move on to other programs or sell ads directly to merchants (easier when your site grows big and gets a lot of natural traffic), but Adsense is a nice way to get started. In addition, it has a few other features that make it perfect for writers.

I will be the first to admit that it’s not going to be a cash cow for every site (but don’t believe people who tell you that you need millions of page views a month to get respectable payouts from Adsense), and the key to making it work well is to choose a consumer-oriented niche, even if that means starting a new site from scratch, rather than simply adding ad blocks to your existing blog. In addition, I recommend avoiding niches that attract the young and the tech/web savvy (folks who live and breathe the Internet and can find products they want to buy without being guided by your ads, thank you very much!).

But I’ll go more into choosing niches another time. Today I want to talk about some of the reasons I think Adsense is a fantastic way for writers, in particular, to get started building wealth-generating assets with their words.

First off…

Adsense works fantastically with content (text!) based sites

If you love taking pictures, drawing comics, or displaying artwork, you might have a challenge monetizing that sort of content with Adsense, but for those of us who enjoy writing, the program is tailor-made.

The more pages filled with words you have, the more opportunity you have to make money.

Of course, there’s more to it than that, but a love for creating content is a prerequisite for doing well with this program. And you don’t have to tell a writer that it’s quality content that ensures lasting success (both with Adsense and for a website in general). For us, doing research and creating valuable articles is a given.

Creating good, quality content (the kind that people what to create links to naturally) comes easily to writers. A lot of us have perfectionist tendencies, and the very idea of putting out junk is offensive. If you’re going to stick your name (or even pen name) on something, you want it to reflect well back on you, because writing is a part of who you are and how you identify yourself. It’s what you’re good at, and you know it (and you want others to know it too!).

This makes you the ideal candidate for creating the sort of website that does well with Adsense.

Writers enjoy researching, teaching, and sharing their opinions

For those who genuinely enjoy teaching and sharing new ideas, there will always be an opportunity to draw an audience on the web (and if you can draw an audience, you can make money with Adsense).

It’s amazing how many blogs don’t say anything new. They either rehash what’s already out there, or they just copy snippets of other people’s posts (sometimes they copy the whole thing). Sometimes their “blogs” are straight and simple spam.

Why on earth would anyone want to read a blog like that? Why on earth would anyone think a blog like that would do well in the long run? (Aside from the fact, that the owner probably read some ebook that promised them vast Adsense riches for following just such a strategy.)

Sure, due to the author’s intensive search engine optimization efforts, you might land on sites like that now and then, but you’re not likely to go back. I sure wouldn’t.

That’s because we want to learn from the thought leaders, not the me-too-ers.

Writers enjoy reading, researching, and forming their own opinions. It’s hard for writers not to be idea makers.

Why? Because we’re readers, first and foremost, and you can’t read a good book without getting a whole passle of ideas romping around in your brain. What you read, what you experience, and who you are go into the pot together, and out comes a stew a bit different from what any other chefs have created.

You don’t have to tell us to tackle a niche from a unique angle or to add our own story to what we’re writing about. It comes naturally.

By applying your need to teach and share new ideas to a website, you can create a site that will rise above the others. Sure, you’ll need to put some time into marketing it (with the zillions of sites online today even brilliance will go unnoticed without a little help), but once the ball gets rolling, you’ll get others talking about your site and sharing it with their friends.

This will create the stream of visitors you need to start making a significant income with Adsense, and, you’ll find that by building a site this way, you can monetize it lots of other ways as well. But I’m fond of Adsense for one more reason…

Adsense is perfect for introverts

Not all writers are introverts, but there sure are a lot of us. We’d rather read a book than go to a party, and we ignore the ringing phone, hoping someone else will answer it. Dealing with other people is taxing, and we need time alone to recover. We may function perfectly well in a social situation, but inside we’d rather be somewhere else, pursuing our dreams instead of babbling about the weather with people we probably won’t see again.

What does this have to do with Adsense?

It’s simple: Adsense lets you make money without dealing with customer service.

In fact, you’re not accountable to anyone–you don’t have to talk to anyone at all. Simply place the script on your websites, and collect your check (or direct deposit, as the case may be) at the end of the month.

Some of you will go on to sell ads directly to merchants (and cut out the Google middleman) or perhaps create a product of your own and have a fleet of affiliates working under you, but the point is… you don’t have to. Adsense gives you the freedom to write the content you want to write, on subjects that interest you, without selling anything and without dealing with anyone, if you so choose.

For the introvert, it’s the ultimate job freedom.

For writers who dream of getting out of the 9 to 5 or “firing” their clients, building up a site and monetizing it with Adsense can get you there.

And for those who say not to hitch your wagon to another company’s destiny, I’ll repeat what I noted above: if you use your words to build a quality site, Adsense will by no means be the only way to monetize it. If you prefer to, think of it as a stepping stone, rather than the end-all goal.

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Tags: Blogging for Bucks

13 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jade Craven // Aug 14, 2008 at 3:11 am

    Really, really interesting post.

    The thing that got me was ‘Adsense is for introverts.’ I am quite introverted and many forms of monetization don’t feel right to me. These include donations, turning my content into e-books. I don’t want to feel like I’m forcing any decision onto my readers.

    I am fond of Adsense because it means less dealing with people. I understand this will effect my monetization options in the future. My site is new and most traffic is from social media so I am yet to test out the long term viability of my niche. :)

    It will be an interesting ride.

    :) Jade

  • 2 Frank C // Aug 16, 2008 at 6:05 am

    I’ve found that writing for Adsense is a balancing act.

    You have to provide acceptable content, meaning content that isn’t a randomly generated bunch of words that come out as nonsense. Visitors hate this and Google hates this. You could get your account banned and deindexed from Google for doing it.

    But, to get the best payouts, you can’t be too good either. You can’t answer the reader’s question. You have to leave them hungry for more and, if done right, that hunger will lead them to click an Adsense ad 10-20% of the time.

    For example, one of my earliest sites has very good content, a lot of traffic and very low Adsense earnings. A newer site has very mediocre content, fair traffic and very good Adsense earnings. Many times I find myself intentionally not writing well or leaving key details out just to help encourage advertising clicks. It can be tough to do, particularly in areas I like, but it earns money so I do it.

  • 3 Lindsay // Aug 16, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    Jade, I too feel I could be making more if I were more into creating and selling products or hardcore promoting affiliate links, but I’d definitely rather keep true to myself and maybe be a little less successful. I’m just thrilled that the web gives us introverts a way to make a nice living, because I’d probably hate life in the corporate world, heh.

    Frank, I usually find it’s the make-money-quick types who fill pages with spam, and that’s definitely not a long-term strategy for building wealth (or even a particularly good short term one :P ). I don’t think most writers would even consider that route.

    I haven’t measured earnings based on the quality of my articles, but I wouldn’t personally leave anything out because I’m hoping for an ad click. I don’t really want people clicking because they are looking for more information but because, after reading my article or review, they’ve realized the Hot Springs Jetted Whirlpool Tub 5000 is something they’re interested in buying.

    That’s just my stance on it all though!

  • 4 MoneyEnergy // Aug 16, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    Hi Lindsay, very interesting – probably no one else has made explicit that adsense is for introverts:) but that’s certainly true, too. I’d be interested in keeping in touch on niche blogging, I’m just getting into that now. We can share cashflow tips!:)

  • 5 Frank C // Aug 16, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    Just to clarify, I like writing for eBay affiliate, EPN, a lot more than I do Adsense. There I can do a good product review or buying guide or other informative post and get good click-thrus and earnings. Plus I can choose to display the product I’m writing about, competing products or complimentary products very easily.

    Adsense is much more tricky to write for because you don’t have a lot of control over what’s displayed and you can cause your earnings to drop if people visit but don’t click thru to the advertiser because your article answered the question they had.

  • 6 Lindsay // Aug 16, 2008 at 11:54 pm

    Hey, thanks for clarifying, Frank, and sorry if I sounded a little holier than thou there. I certainly have my share of less than brilliant articles out there. In the beginning, in particular, I was focusing more on trying to make money than helping people. It took me a while to realize I’d actually make more money by doing more of the latter. ;)

  • 7 Online Dividends // Aug 21, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    Adsense is for introverts bc we don’t go out and sell our own ad space.. Google does it for us.

  • 8 Erosion Control Service // Aug 25, 2008 at 5:07 am

    Just wondering – I don’t see any ads on this page? Where’s the adsense ads?

  • 9 Lindsay // Aug 25, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    ECS, I’ll be writing more about what kinds of niches do well with Adsense (think consumer oriented–product/service information, reviews, etc.), but “how to make money online” sites aren’t among them. ;) I have Adsense on my home and garden sites though!

  • 10 Katie // Sep 2, 2008 at 11:25 am

    Great article and excellent blog. I will be coming back to read more for sure.
    Thanks!

  • 11 Miss Melinda // Sep 4, 2008 at 1:51 am

    This is a really interesting article! I am an introvert as well and I tend to use Adsense, although not always. There are so many helpful tips in both the blog post and the comments, I’m so grateful to have read this! Thank you! :)

  • 12 CCGAL // Oct 5, 2008 at 7:24 am

    This is one of the best articles I’ve seen on Adsense. Your writer’s voice is clear and sincere, and left me feeling I’ve just met a kindred spirit online.

  • 13 Toni B // Dec 6, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    Thanks for writing this article. It was not only informative, but inspiring. I was pretty discouraged and thinking that I couldn’t make a good income with a blog for people new to web design and maintenance, but your confidence and love for what you do came through so clearly in your writing, that I’m ready to give blogging another try.

    Thanks.

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