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How I Increased My Food Blog Revenue By 3x in Just A Month Time.

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How I Increased My Food Blog Revenue By 3x in Just A Month Time.

In my earlier story, I shared about how my blog started getting 150K visitors a month, and if you have missed that story; you can start here. For the late comers,  My name is Surkhab, I am a food blogger at Evergreen Recipes and this is the second part of my post about my blogging journey. As I promised, here I’m sharing how I monetised my food recipe blog and also how I increased overall revenue from my blog by 3x.

My food blog income when using Google AdSense

Back in the days when I was getting only few visitors a month, I was using Adsense, like any other blogger who has just started out. But as the traffic wasn’t much, the Adsense revenue wasn’t good either. At least not what you call an earning, my focus was on generating more traffic to the blog as it would also increase the Adsense revenue.

Adsense not working

I was wrong, even when I started getting 3000 page views a day, I was making $3/day ( or 99/month) on an average, which means I would get a monthly check of $100 (which is the minimum threshold of Google Adsense to gt a check) only if one day in that month my Adsense could do more than $3 in revenue.

I learned my lesson in the first month itself, and it was that the traffic is not the only factor to increase your earnings. Most of my traffic was coming from Social Media sites (as I mentioned that in my previous post), these people are blind to ads or let me put it like this, they were clever. The other reason I think was that there aren’t too many advertisers for food/cooking topic.

Suggested read:

Understand your readers need to select best blog monetization technique

understand audience need

I went back to my popular posts and read the comments, observed the behavior of my reads, when someone shared my post of Facebook, I stalked them to see what kind of content they are sharing and are interested in. I did all kind of crazy things just to find out how do I monetize these people, and I learned one lesson, that is, they won’t click on Adsense and I need to look for something else.

It was time I had to explore more opportunities and rethink about the monetizing model of my blog.

During my crazy research , I also found that my readers were asking me all kind of questions like How to I get started, what spices do I need to cook  a particular food, which brand of an appliance I am using to prepare the recipes and many other questions. Initially I used to reply to their emails/comments and answer their queries straight away, but now I had got the solution to their as well as my problem.

This was the time I signed up for the Amazon Associate program, a service that pays you a commission every time someone buys something from Amazon via your link.

So, I am now putting links to the products I use in my recipes, which makes it easy for people to buy them online and I get a commission for it. I found that it actually converts better than Adsense. A $100 worth of product sold gives me a commission of over $3 to $4 which is not bad at all, considering most of the products range between $50- $100 and I just need one sale every day to compete with my Adsense revenue.

 

The other steep was to solve the other problem of my readers. I selected few easiest recipes from my own blog and put them in a pdf document and sold it for $1.99 to my list of 500 subscribers. I sold 4 eBooks on day one and it felt awesome, it was $7.97, which is almost 3 times than my Adsense revenue, that too for something which took no time to create, the content was already there on my blog, I just packed it into an eBook, making it easy for people to get started.

I stopped selling that eBook after a month and I am now experimenting with CPA, by offering a free download of my eBook after they fill up a survey. It is also working well,  I am working on a new eBook which will be a lot better and not a rip off of my blog recipes.

Not a millionaire stuff here but I am making 3x the money I used to make with Adsense. I am still running the Adsense Ads though, but the other two methods I tried was enough to motivate me to keep blogging and keep doing that with passion.

That’s all from my side, I hope you take home a lesson or two from this post. Think how you can analyze your site and find best ways to monetize it. Adsense is not the only option and traffic is not the only factor.

If you are a food blogger, I would love to know; how you earning money from your blog. Let’s find out what are the best working methods for other bloggers to earn money from their blog.

Article by Surkhab Khan

Surkhab has written 2 articles.

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{ 14 comments… add one }

  • Guru

    When did you start your recipe blog? Since when you started getting more visitors?

    In this article, you mentioned about that you got very few visitors during the early days.

    Even i am in that same situation, not getting enough traffic, started 3 months back.

    If you tell me how long it took to get decent traffic, it would be very much helpful.

    Reply
  • Renuka Redy

    Good motivational story…. Amazon is always substitute for Adsense income if your blog is product related…

    Reply
  • sangeetha menon

    Hi Surkhab,

    Thank you for sharing your experience and it motivates me alot.

    As you said , its important to know your readers and which strategy would work for your blog as well as the readers.

    I had planned to write an ebook, but somehow the idea was put in the back burner , but I think its high time now , as your post showd me the importance of having an ebook and subcriber list too.

    Pls keep writing your experiences.

    Reply
  • Millar Matthews

    Hi Surkhab, very nice article indeed. I think the key is to have patience and keep bringing ad making your blog popular. Once you have people coming to your blog then you are set. Very encouraging indeed.

    Reply
  • Abhishek Tavasalkar

    Hello Surkhab,

    You’ve put out this article very brilliantly. I doesn’t seems you’ve realized this.

    But tracking your readers behavior after they share your content and leave your site is called ‘Reserve Engineering’

    This really led you to create a solid base to increase your income (3 times), and at the same time give value to your readers.

    Your article is a great inspiration for bloggers who swear by Adsense. Affiliate marketing is the way to go.

    A very well written article. Have a great day Surkhab.

    Cheers…

    Reply
  • eric

    Hi, Being a girl, How do you know all this internet marketing things>? IS your husband also a blogger or internet entrepreneur?

    Reply
  • Varun

    Good to see that Bloggers are moving from AdSense to other stuffs like Affiliates and CPA. :)
    I’m also giving a try to Amazon associates from past few days and as of now its working really good.

    Reply
  • Prakash Kanyal

    Hi Surkhab,

    I have read your story from top to bottam, it was amazing and motivational.

    I have a question evolving in my mind , is it possible to put Amazon affilate links with Adsense?

    Please explain to me..

    Thank you

    Reply
    • Harsh Agrawal

      @Prakash
      Yes you can use Amazon or any other affiliate program with AdSense.

      Reply
  • Sanusi

    Good and Motivational Article,
    I always choose Affiliate ahead of adsense . because of big opportunity in affiliate when you sell one or two products it may cover two or four days adsense earning.

    It will be good to look into amazon affiliate they are great and trusted by many people around the world .

    Thank for this Article.

    Reply
  • Mahendra

    Hey Surkhab,

    It’s cool to see that alternate revenue model working out for you. I have had a chance to meet with one female food blogger from Noida, who is making great deal of money by video blogging on youtube. Heck, even people at youtube treat her like a celebrity to create more such people and empower youtube. So alternate revenue model is good but sometimes repacking what you offer and how you offer also works.

    and @Harsh, it’s great to see Shout Me Loud never running out of quality content. Keep up the good work.

    Have a great day.

    Reply
  • Anupum Pant

    Although mine is not a food blog, I face a similar predicament with adsense. I did crazy research on revenue models too…just like you. I always had the ebook idea in mind, but never thought I’d be able to pull it off. This gives me great courage! Thanks.
    Can you share how you marketed the ebook? Or was it through daily visitors, these copies were selling automatically?
    Another post on ebook publishing would be a great help!

    Reply
    • Surkhab

      Nothing Actually,
      apart from sending it to my list of 500 subscribers and then placing a banner on the blog.
      I did some experiments with the placement but then I came to know that I need to keep updating the eBook or bring another eBook to keep the sales steady as mostly all the visitors are regular ones and it odd to market the same book again and again.

      Will try to post about my eBook publishing experiment when I get time, (busy mom of a 1 year old kid here :-) )

      Reply
  • Raj

    Hi surkhab,
    Nice motivational article, i agree with the point that traffic alone is not enough for earning with adsense.
    I always hesitated to sell pdf articles but after reading your story may be i will consider doing it once again.
    Thanks for the post and happy cooking

    Reply

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