I received an e-mail today presumably from a visitor to my bbq blog asking me to share a few thoughts about blogging and the potential for earning an income from it. I am flattered to receive questions asking me for advice about such things. I don't consider myself an expert at all, but I did my best to reply with information that might be helpful based on my experience. A short e-mail morphed into blog-post-length, so I thought I'd share it in a blog post here in case it might help someone else.
I love blogging. I've been blogging on the internet since 2001 in various forms. I started with a plain old website and then switched to Google's Blogger platform. I tried to switch over to the paid Wordpress platform a couple of years ago because I like the templates and plugins available, but I don't have enough knowleldge to do it myself.
If I were starting over from scratch, I'd definitely use the Wordpress platform.
I have 7 or 8 blogs, but my bbq blog is by far my biggest and oldest. It's ironic, but my smallest blog actually was the most profitable. I had a blog about vermicomposting that was very profitable. I wrote about composting and gardening in my backyard. I also wrote about raising eisenia foetida red worms and sold my "extras". I had referrals coming from several sources including the local Worm's Way retail store.
|My wife and I at Martin's original location in Nolensville, TN|
I earn a steady income from my bbq blog, but it is not "big". I don't dismiss it though because over a period of years it starts to add up. I earn a little money that helps support my bbq hobby. The income keeps me interested enough in the website to continue writing articles for it.
There are ebbs and flows in blogging. As my readers have witnessed, I go through periods where my creativity declines and through other periods where I am writing content that is more engaging and interesting. My site has enjoyed a steady readership year after year and I have several hundred subscribers who receive updates from my site in their e-mail inbox. It continues to be the sincerest form of flattery to me. That someone would continue receiving my blog posts for a period of weeks, months, and years. I go through periods where more people unsubscribe to the blog than I'd like, but during other periods I have added new subscribers on a consistent basis.
If you like blogging about bbq, then go for it. Read other blogs about bbq and learn what you like and what others like. That will help you find your own blogging voice and position in blogosphere. I do not think it's realistic to start out with the goal of earning a significant income, but it is certainly possible. It is an endeavor like most things...you get out of it what you put into it.