Passive income. Throw it up there, monetize it, sit back and collect checks. Sounds nice, doesn’t it?
Honestly, I think everyone’s dream is to continue to make money without doing any additional work. To rid yourself of financial troubles without ridding yourself of your time. To free yourself to a life of happiness.
But can a blog itself accomplish this? Is passive income from blogging actually possible?
Yes and no.
Passive Income Isn’t Exactly Passive
Before we can determine if income from blogging is passive, we must first understand what passive income actually is. While the definition will vary depending on who you talk to, it’s largely agreed that passive income is income that will continue to come in with no work whatsoever on your part.
Now, let’s take a look at how blogs actually earn money. For most people, the big bucks are earned promoting products through your email list. Other monetization methods include selling sponsored posts, ad revenue, or selling your own services.
Here’s the problem. Most of those monetization methods aren’t passive at all.
You can set up an autoresponder to promote products automatically, but you’ll still have to respond to emails and periodically check to see if your links are all still working.
You could sell sponsored posts, but that still requires you to respond to potential buyers and thus, check your email daily.
You could outsource your services, but you’ll still have to take the time to pay the outsourcees and answer inquiries from potential customers.
The only truly passive income from blogs comes from advertising revenue. And most of the time, that revenue is not sustainable.
Your Traffic Isn’t Guaranteed
In order to make money from ad revenue, you need traffic that comes to you, without you seeking it out.
For most people, the bulk of this will be from search engines. Forums, blog comments, and high-ranking guest posts will also send you a steady stream of free, long-term traffic.
Unfortunately however, these sources aren’t guaranteed to send you traffic forever. Not at all – and they won’t. As time goes on, newer and better sites will pop-up while your blog remains stagnant. Those new blogs will take over your rankings, and your vital traffic will slowly but surely diminish.
Your rankings will drop in Google. Websites with links to your site will go offline. Every month, fewer and fewer people will be visiting your site, even if your content is ‘evergreen.’
So no, you can’t just throw up a few blog articles and expect them to make money for you for the rest of your life. It simply won’t happen. That’s why I get so pissed off when I hear marketers selling some BS “system” that claims to do exactly that.
I’m not saying that you can’t make money off of old articles. You will. I’m not saying that your income won’t grow over time. It will. What I’m saying is that blogging itself is not passive. It is one of the farthest things from passive income that I can possibly imagine.
That being said, there are a few things you can do to create real passive income from your blogging – but not from the blog itself.
Realistically Creating Passive Income From Your Blog
1. Create A Kindle Book
Kindle is one of my only income sources that I can truly consider passive. While you make a lot more from Kindle if you’re actively marketing your books, Amazon does a good job at getting relevant books in front of interested buyers.
This is a system that actually allows you to create passive income because your book will ALWAYS be for sale on Kindle and Amazon will ALWAYS be trying to sell it to people. That’s not to say newer and better books won’t come onto the market (they will) but if you take a unique angle you’ll always be making sales.
Here’s where your blog comes into play. It’s not a bad idea to take some of the best posts on your blog, re-write or even just re-organize them, bundle them together, and sell them on Kindle. This is being done all the time and the content sells.
Here’s the truth. People will always pay money for convenience. You bet people will opt to pay $2.99 for 40 pages worth of content all in one place, rather than taking the time to find 40 different blog posts on the subject.
If you want to learn more about Kindle publishing, I highly recommend checking out the course I’ve created on the subject. This course covers everything there is to know about succeeding on Kindle. From choosing profitable topics to setting your books up in a way so they sell with no marketing whatsoever, this course has got it.
2. Invest Your Blog’s Income
Stock dividends are the ultimate form of passive income. You put your money into the stock market, and collect a dividend check every single quarter. You’re essentially getting a guaranteed pay-raise every 3 months. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty awesome.
It blows my mind how few people are investing when it’s so easy, so cheap, and there is such little risk.
Rich people use their money to make more money. Smart bloggers grow their income by spending as little as possible and investing the rest. So why isn’t everyone doing this?
I’m honestly not sure. I think there is a lot of fear behind it all – put your money into the market, and there’s a chance you’ll lose it. Perhaps people think that they need tens of thousands of dollars to begin. Perhaps people think that investing is challenging, requiring a lot of financial or economic knowledge.
All of those excuses couldn’t be further from the truth.
Many people (including myself) invest into something called index funds. These are essentially funds which tracks all of the stocks in a specific index.
They are safe they are so diverse. If 10 stocks drop to zero, that’s fine. There are 490 others rising in value. No economic knowledge is required – someone else will manage everything for you for an incredibly low fee. Buying is easy – simply transfer money to your brokerage account and click ‘buy’.
There are no excuses. Investing is safe, easy, and profitable. It’s incredible that more people aren’t doing it.
Minimize your expenses and invest your money. Before you know it, you’ll be able to quit your job to blog full time. Eventually, you’ll achieve financial freedom and can live solely off of your investments.
Update: I have created a course on this as well! Click here to check out my money management and investing course, Achieve Financial Independence And Retire Early!
The next time somebody tries to tell you that income from blogging is passive, stop and ask yourself – is it really? Chances are, no. If it is, it’s probably not sustainable as new websites will slowly pop-up and steal your visitors.
Instead of blogging for the goal of creating passive income, aim to make as much as possible while working as little as possible. Focus on the 20% of actions that result in 80% of your income, and outsource areas that aren’t worth your time.
Passive income isn’t possible from blogging on its own, but that’s ok. You can create it anyway.