Paid Reviews Guide – How to Make Money (+Burning Questions)

Paid Review Good Or Bad For Blog


When we talk about making money via blogs, there are some easy ways like AdSense, other ad programs, affiliate marketing, direct advertisement sales, and also paid reviews.

With the evolution of blogging, companies are realizing the importance of getting their word out on blogs. Some of them sponsor giveaways, some buy direct ads, and some sponsor paid reviews.

Paid reviews are very effective because each review will presumably stay on the web as long as that website exists. So for an advertiser, this is very good. And for a blogger, it’s a great opportunity to earn more from their blog.

Paid reviews are something that many people know about and usually ignore. They don’t realize there’s a lot of money in doing paid reviews.

If you have a niche blog on any topic, chances are high that many people will contact you to review their product on your blog.

In your journey, you will receive a ton of email regarding review of the products. Some of the emails will be like these:

Now the big question is…

Should you do the review for free or for paid?

This question gets more tricky when you get a paid request for a product that you wanted to review as it is. However, what you need to know is, this is an opportunity to also get paid upfront for hours of work you planning to put into something.

Here are a couple things to remember when doing reviews: Free or paid.

If the product which you have been asked to review is relevant to your niche, don’t be afraid to do a review.

If you find the product useful for your reader base, and you feel that other users are going to get benefit out of this product, grab a sample copy of the product and review it.

Also, if you feel that there’s a product out there in the market that you think is worthwhile, you can just go out and do a review; don’t wait for an advertiser to come to you.

Note: You can also see if the company has an affiliate program that you can join.

Is This Product Free Or Paid?

Should You Do A Free Review Or A Paid Review?

If the product which you have been asked to review is relevant to your niche, don’t be afraid to do a review.

If you find the product useful for your reader base, and you feel that other users are going to get benefit out of this product, grab a sample copy of the product and review it.

Also, if you feel that there’s a product out there in the market that you think is worthwhile, you can just go out and do a review; don’t wait for an advertiser to come to you.

Note: You can also see if the company has an affiliate program that you can join.

Is This Product Free Or Paid?

Sometimes a possible advertiser will contact you and tell you about a free version of a product.

Whenever you are asked to do a review of a product, make sure you check to see if there’s a paid version of the product. If yes, don’t be afraid to ask for money to do the review. After all, you will be generating business for them.

In my case, whenever I get asked to do a review of any web service or product, I always check to see if there’s a premium version of the product. But if there’s only a free version, and that product seems useful, I’ll review it for free.

In most cases, paid reviews are done for three reasons:

  1. Backlinks
  2. Traffic
  3. Exposure

Backlinks

If you have a blog with decent domain authority, chances are high that many advertisers will contact you to do the review while providing a link back to their site.  Since you have an authority blog and are in the same niche, such backlinks mean a lot.

Traffic

High traffic is another thing that people look for when soliciting paid reviews. These advertisers are not targeting backlinks; instead, they are more inclined to get targeted traffic so that they can make more sales.

So if you have a niche website and you are driving targeted traffic from Google, you could easily attract advertisers who want to buy reviews from you.

Exposure

Suppose I create a new product and people don’t know about it. The easiest way to inform people is by buying some cheap, paid reviews on some popular blogs and websites related to the product’s niche.

This will create brand awareness, and people will start learning about the product. This is similar to buying a banner ad, but it’s more effective because the product is discussed in-depth.

Should you do a paid review or not?

The short answer is, yes!

There is nothing wrong with paid reviews, and it infact help you to make money upfront. Though you need to be vigilant about the products that you are reviewing on your blog.

You should try the product before buying, and if possible try other products in the similar category. This is also your chance to learn about a complete new category of products.

Doing this will help you to come up with the most authentic review possible, and hence your users would reward you with loyalty, and sales that happen post that.

Make sure you ask the advertiser for a sample product so that you can write an honest review.

Here are 6 tips to write Paid Reviews:

1. Know product details

The first thing to know before writing paid review is the product, company, their terms, and conditions etc. All these things give you a brief idea about the review which you will be writing on your blog. Read reviews about that product and if possible give that product a try, this will make you sure that you are selecting a right product for writing review.

If it’s a software, the best way to write a review is by downloading it and trying it yourself. This way, you can know about possible advantage and the problem with the software. When you are writing a review, make sure you do mention pros and cons of a software. Else, despite writing an amazing review you will lose on trust part.

2. Confidence

Accept the paid reviews only after you are confident about the product. There is no point in selling the product which is not worth or not useful for your readers. Trust is the most important part of blogging, single bad suggestion to your readers might result in losing your readers and followers. If you are confident that the product is useful, you will surely write a killer paid review.

3. Useful for your readers

Blogging is not only about making money online, it is more for sharing the information useful for your readers. Thus, while writing paid reviews make sure that you write for readers not only for money. Like if you have a technology blog, accept reviews about useful websites, gadgets or technical services rather than going for garments or any other relevant products.

Also Read: How to Write Articles for Your Readers

4. Include your opinions

Many bloggers generally copy the contents and features of the product website and write reviews about same. But if you want to write paid reviews effectively, you need to give your opinion about the product rather than copying from other’s blog. If you think that product has few disadvantages, write it in your review. After all, the review is all about sharing a true opinion.

5. Involve Readers

When you are writing a paid review make sure you don’t write a typical review which starts with features and ends up with same. Your paid review must be interactive with your readers. Don’t just finish the review with your views, ask your readers to provide useful feedback. Your readers would surely show interest while commenting if you keep an open end in your reviews.

6. Add Review summary using Schema plugin:

Reviews are very useful for getting traffic from search engine and with new schema data, you can add rate the software, tool product you are reviewing and you can show it in star. Below is an example of one of the review article from our blog, where we have shown star rating:

review star rating

Now only it will help you to get more CTR, but it will also help you to increase the trust. Be honest while giving the rating and do remember, best rating goes only to outstanding products. You can use WP Review pro, which is one we use here at ShoutMeLoud. Using this plugin, you can also add a review summary box around your content.

This is great for readers to quickly read the review of the content & also to get more CTR. In case if you don’t like the color of review box in the above screenshot, do not worry! You can customize the look & feel of the review box.

In my opinion, there is no harm in doing a paid review, but make sure you review only those products that are related to your niche and you have personally used.

Do you accept paid reviews? What criteria do you use to decide if you should do one or not? Let me know in the comments below.

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Authored By
A Blogger, Author and a speaker! Harsh Agrawal is recognized as a leader in digital marketing and FinTech space. Fountainhead of ShoutMeLoud, and a Speaker at ASW, Hero Mindmine, Inorbit, IBM, India blockchain summit. Also, an award-winning blogger.

22 thoughts on “Paid Reviews Guide – How to Make Money (+Burning Questions)”

    1. Thats true Sushant, but again for quick bucks, some new bloggers forget to verify the legality of product they review.

  1. George Serradinho

    I have not done any paid reviews yet and I don’t know if I actually would, I guess it depends on who approaches me and what kind of product it is. Thanks for breaking it down for us and maybe I will write a post about me accepting paid reviews.

    1. And in case if you do, also mention the Disclosure about it’s a paid review. Or create a Disclosure page.. 🙂

  2. Rajesh Kanuri @ TechCats

    me personally love to do paid reviews at my blog and at the same time I prefer to be honest.. referring a wrong product to my readers will damage my reputation.. so I will be careful in choosing the reviews.. recently I have rejected a couple of paid review offers although they offer a decent amount..

    1. Thats so nice of you Rajesh, and maintain your principles. Because sometime.. Lots of money are involved in paid reviews and people fall for the trap.
      So better use or verify if product is good for your readers or just a waste..

  3. I have tried Paid reviews but I never get good products to review so never reviewed a bad product. Still waiting to have some good review products that can give some extra bucks for my pocket

  4. ProVamsi @ India365

    “Nothing for bloggers But holes to pockets for companies.”
    @ Aravind, awesome man. I started laughing loudly, instantly after looking at your comment forgetting the fact that that I’m in my office. Every body started looking at me strangely for five minutes after that. Things are ok now. Excellent timing man.

  5. Yes Harsh, paid review is one good option for make money blogging, we have gain much knowledge about the products so that we can write one nice review.

  6. i have often read that paid reviews do not get well with readers…may be because reader knows the blogger is doing this for money and he is not completely honest with his opinions

  7. The key thing here is sometimes the product provider or the sponsor for the review might ask for good reviews, whereas in reality the product is completely rubbish. Bloggers need not feel the urge to unnecessarily praise a product just because they are getting paid to review. A nice way to put the defects up-front is to address them as room for improvement.

  8. Dana @ Online Knowledge

    Yeah, paid review is one of many normal ways to earn money. My biggest earn still from paid review until now.

  9. I think its nothing bad in talking about good product and reviewing it on your blog. I don’t agree with Tushar as if your blog visitors see the implementation of an application or tool on the blog about which you had given a good review then they will definitely buy that application or product.

  10. I used to accept paid review which has related content with my blog, also I’ll write based on what I experienced, what I saw and what I felt.

  11. i don’t think search engines really likes paid reviews, perhaps a blogger should take that into account before going into paid reviews…

  12. I reviewed several products for free in my blog. Which gets around 3k visitors and 4500-5k page views per day. But, Writing reviews kills my time. So, I decided not to write any free review. I have planned to charge $100 for a review article with a single dofollow link to the product page. It it OK? Expecting a short and quick suggestion from you @Harsh 🙂

  13. Jaswinder Kaur

    Very informative Post, especially for those who want to earn money from different Online Ways!

    I have never tried Paid Reviews and even don’t want to do in future also.

    The Best way for me to Make Money Online through Blogging is-Affiliate Marketing and I love it!

    Thanks.

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