How to Sell Ads on Your WordPress Blog (Step by Step)
Do you want to sell ads on your WordPress blog? Selling ads on a blog or website is one of the most common ways to make money online. In this article, we will show you how to sell adds on your WordPress blog and explain the different types of ad options available to you.
What Do You Need to Sell Ads on Your WordPress Blog?
First, you need to make sure you are using the right blogging platform. There are two types of WordPress blogs, WordPress.com which is a hosted blogging service and WordPress.org also called self-hosted WordPress. See the difference in our comparison of WordPress.com vs WordPress.org.
WordPress.com have their own WordAds program and only allows third-party ads if you sign up for the business plan.
On the other hand, you can run ads on your self-hosted WordPress.org website out of the box.
If you don’t yet have a WordPress.org website, then follow the instructions in our guide on how to start a WordPress blog, and you will be up and running in no time.
That being said, let’s take a look at what kind of ads you can sell on your WordPress blog.
Types of Ads You Can Sell on Your WordPress Blog
There are different types of ads that you can sell on your WordPress blog. One ad type may work better than the other depending on your website’s topic, audience, and overall traffic.
You can also choose to combine different ad types to create an effective monetization strategy for your blog.
1. CPC or Cost-Per-Click Ads
Cost-per-click ads are the most common type of ads displayed on the majority of websites. Ads are sold on a per-click basis which means you are only eligible to get paid when a user clicks on the ad.
The reason this ad type is so successful is that it works effectively for both publishers and advertisers. Advertisers get traffic to their websites which they can use to generate leads or increase sales. The publisher is able to get paid for sending traffic.
Advertising programs like Google AdSense allow you to easily sell cost per click ads on your website. Once you sign up with the Google AdSense program, your website will become available to Google’s enormous network of advertisers.
For more details see our guide on how to properly add Google AdSense in WordPress.
One downside is that if you have low traffic, or your ads are not placed at strategic locations, then you may get a very low click-through rate for ads on your website. However, many website owners quickly overcome this by optimizing their ads in WordPress.
2. CPM or Cost-Per-Thousand-Impressions Ads
CPM (cost per mille) or cost-per-thousand-impression are ads that are sold based on how many times they are displayed. This means you get paid for displaying ads on your website whether users click on them or not.
CPM ads often fail to generate the same amount of revenue as you would generate with cost-per-click ads alone. However, they can be a significant source of income if you have a high traffic website, and you don’t want to place ads too close to your content.
Advertisers are particularly keen on buying CPM ads on websites with a high reputation among their target audiences.
3. Flat Fee Ads
Flat fee ads allow you to sell ad spots on your website for a specific time-period. You can price your ads based on how much traffic your website generates on an average.
This type of ads provide more impressions and clicks to advertisers and allow website owners to know exactly how much they will earn at the end of the period.
Advertisers usually purchase this type of ads on websites with higher traffic matching their target demographics. You can sell ads directly through your website by creating an ‘Advertise Here’ page. Alternatively, you can also join programs like BuySellAds or DoubleClick by Google.
4. Affiliate Ads
Affiliate ads can also be called action based ads. Basically, you send traffic to an advertiser’s website, but you only get paid if a user completes an action. This action could be anything like making a purchase, downloading software, creating an account, etc.
Affiliate programs provide you a unique URL with your referral ID. You can then use this URL to create banners, graphics, or add links directly in your articles.
The benefit of affiliate ads is that you get paid substantially higher than what you would get paid on a cost per click or cost per mille ad.
You can sign up for affiliate programs of different products and services that you want to promote. Each product, service, and affiliate program comes with its own commission rates, terms, and conditions.
For example, WPEngine’s affiliate program allows you to earn on each new sign up you send their way. Your commission will be based on the user’s entire first month payment or fixed $200 whichever is higher.
You can easily manage your affiliate links in WordPress using ThirstyAffiliates. You will also find plenty of tools and plugins to boost your affiliate marketing.
Setting up Banner Ads on Your Website
After looking at the different ad types you can come up with a monetization strategy that works for you. Don’t worry if you are still not sure which is the right choice for you.
Most website owners use multiple ad types and then prioritize them based on their earning potential.
Once you have chosen a monetization strategy, you are now ready to add banner ads to your website. WordPress has several really good ad management plugins that you can use.
We recommend using AdSanity, it is one of the most beginner-friendly ad management plugin for WordPress.
First thing you need to do is install and activate the AdSanity plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.
Upon activation, simply go to Adsanity » Create Ad to create your first ad.
AdSanity allows you to create any kind of ad. You can create a self-hosted ad, local ad, or add the ad code provided by an ad program like Google AdSense.
If you are running a local ad, then you can upload a banner image and graphics. If it is a third-party ad, then you can go ahead and enter the ad code.
Under the publish meta box, you can also schedule the ad to run for a specific period or allow it to run indefinitely. Don’t forget to click on the publish or update button to save your changes.
AdSanity allows you to display ads anywhere on your website using widgets and shortcodes. Simply go to Appearance » Widgets page and drag and drop the AdSanity single ad widget to a sidebar.
For detailed instructions, see our article on how to manage ads in WordPress with AdSanity.
We hope this article helped you learn how to sell ads on your WordPress blog. You may also want to see our guide on more ways to make money online using WordPress.