15 Inspiring Ways to Monetize Your Website in 2020

Promoting your business with a website is great. People can see who you are, what you do, and what services you offer.

It is a great way to get your name out there and, these days, most people turn to the internet to research companies before making a purchase. Having an online presence is somewhat of a necessity.

If you have a website of any kind, manage a blog, advertise your arts and crafts, or promote any other form of business, you could be missing out on a golden opportunity to make money. Your website is more than just an advertisement for your company, it is actually a viable gateway to generating several additional income streams for yourself.

With so many options available for advertising, affiliate marketing, and more, there are ways to make money simply by having people visit your site. It is worth capitalizing on these methods.

If your site is one that gets high traffic volume, the rewards can be quite lucrative.

There are people who have made an entire business just from their website traffic and advertising revenue. So how do you get a piece of the pie? Read on.

We will lay out some of the ways that you can incorporate advertising and use other available methods to net yourself a tidy sum.

1.Use Ad Networks
picture of an ad network

One of the most common ways to generate money from your site is by earning advertising dollars. Ad networks place ads on your site, and every time a visitor clicks on it, you get a small percentage after the ad network takes their cut.

The king of all ad networks is undoubtedly Google Adsense. You can sign up with them for free, and once approved, ads will begin to appear on your site in strategic locations.

You don’t even have to worry about designing or placing the adverts; it is all done for you. Google will select the ads and place the ads directly on your site.

Earnings can be tracked via Adsense’s useful dashboard, which will give you a handy breakdown of earnings and show exact performance stats for each ad placed. Adsense places a lot of CPM and CPC ads (more about that in a minute) and places a selection of banner ads, display ads, mobile ads, video ads, and search result ads.

Adsense is actually the oldest ad network around. But don’t take that for granted; there is an approval process to go through to be able to use Adsense, which is governed by some specific guidelines.

Most sites will be approved. However, if you are one of the sites that happen to not make the cut, fortunately, there are many other ad networks from which to choose.

Some of the other popular ad networks, in no particular order, are:

These listed ad networks will give alternate options to Adsense if you do not get ad approval or would rather use an alternate network for whatever reason. There are no limits on earnings with clicks ads, and the more traffic you get, the more you can potentially earn.

Some terminology you will come across when setting up your ads include:

  • CPC – Cost Per Click–what it costs the advertiser for someone to click their ad.
  • CPM – Cost Per Mille (or Cost Per Impression)–a flat-rate cost per 1000 impressions or views.
  • CPA – Cost Per Acquisition (or Action)–the cost of gaining a conversion or of a visitor performing an action(e.g. an email sign up or software installation.)

2. Sell Ads

image of Sell Ads


Instead of using Adsense or a similar network to place your ads (who all take their fee before paying you), you could always choose the option of selling your own ad space directly.

This option works well if you can show high traffic to your site, thereby making it desirable to the advertiser. If you can show that you are well positioned at a specific niche, this will be even better for you.

With this method, you get paid by the cost of ad placement, not by ad clicks. This makes it somewhat of a no-risk proposition for you.

However, for advertisers to continue placing their promotional content with you, they will want to see some kind of traffic.

The downside of this method is that you have to find advertisers willing to place their content on your site, and earnings can fluctuate quite a bit. However, with earnings for each ad averaging quite a bit higher than Adsense ads, many feel that it’s worth dealing with the fluctuations.

Companies like AdClerks and Adsella can help you find advertisers, but if you have some sales ability, you can approach companies yourself and sell your ad space directly to them.

3. Affiliate Marketing

image of Affiliate Marketing

This is one of the best money generators available for website owners.

Affiliate marketing has steadily increased in popularity year after year, and according to statistics, is still showing an annual 10% growth. With numbers like that, it is no wonder that this is such a popular platform for marketers, businesses, and website owners.

Simply put, affiliate marketing is where the affiliate (you) earns commissions on sales of a company’s products or services. This can be a physical product that is shipped to the buyer, or it can be a service like downloadable courses or training videos.

There are a few different structures available for affiliate marketers, and they can be defined by PPS, PPL, or PPC. Here we go with the abbreviations again! 

  • PPS – Pay Per Sale–the most prevalent model in affiliate marketing, and most obvious one, is pay per sale. Your site visitor buys a product from your website or via one of your links, and you earn a commission–all without the effort of buying or shipping the product yourself. Pretty nice!
  • PPL – Pay Per Lead–this one is a bit more complicated and typically requires the purchaser to visit a vendor website or similar and perform a specific action. This could be filling out a form, signing up for email alerts, or registering for a promotion. Once the purchaser has completed the action, you, as the affiliate marketer, get paid.
  • PPC – Pay Per Click–this model focuses on the act of redirecting potential purchasers or customers from your website, the affiliate website, to the merchant’s website. This can be an online store or some other means of marketing their products. As an affiliate, you will be paid based on the increase of traffic to the merchant’s site.

If you have read any of my articles, you probably know that this is one of my favourite methods of monetizing a website.

There is literally an endless amount of choices of things you can become an affiliate for. One of my favourites is the Clickfunnels Affiliate Program.

To learn more about affiliate marketing, be sure to check out the list of my favourite training courses.

4. Ask For Support Donations

image of Support Donations

If you don’t ask, you don’t get, right? This is one method that is often overlooked, but it is worth considering–especially if your site is attached to some sort of good cause, humanitarian effort, or is just the provider of useful information to your visitors.

If your website traffic is a decent volume and you have a good follower base, then it is worth asking people to contribute to your website’s expenses. If you are providing real value, then your site visitors may be more than happy to throw a few dollars your way just to see your site remain active and online.

Most people know that managing a successful website costs money and time, therefore, it can be worth highlighting that fact on your pages and providing users with a way to donate some money.

It’s relatively easy to set up. Paypal even has dedicated “Donate Now” buttons that you can place on your site specifically for donation collections.

Once people donate to your cause, you can use 100% of the money to pay your web host, fund a new project, or cover any other expenses that are associated with keeping your website online.

5. Sell Services

image of Sell Services

There has been an increase in recent years of the amount of freelancing platforms available.

These platforms connect people selling their knowledge or services with customers willing to pay money. While these platforms are certainly helpful in building your customer base they do take fees.

Places like Upwork, one of the biggest freelance platforms, try to keep it reasonable. They charge 20% of overall fees up to the first $500 billed to each client. After that, it’s 10%.

All money is held in escrow until scheduled tasks are completed and then released when the job is approved. This is useful as it protects both the buyer and seller financially: the buyer gets to view and approve the job or task, and the seller knows when they are getting paid.

However, you may decide that you are more comfortable selling your services directly to your customer base.

If this is the case, then you can utilize your website in a number of ways to promote yourself. Catalog pages, embedded video, and promotional pages with purchase links can all be used. You get to keep 100% of the money, and your clients get to deal with you directly.

This works especially well if you can provide some kind of knowledge base or teaching material. Educate customers in the effective use of SEO, or show them ways to improve site traffic, for example.

6. Sell Your Products (Online Store)

image of Online Store

If you are more crafty than tech, then product sales may work better for you.

Instead of selling knowledge or training, maybe you are a whiz at wood whittling or are an aspiring artist with a range of gorgeous watercolors. Crafts and artisan creations are in high demand, so there is definitely an opportunity to turn your creations into profits.

Whatever your artistic talents, there is bound to be a market out there for them. Sellers are making money for everything from handcrafted silver jewelry to paintings of people’s pets–the opportunities are limitless.

Online marketplaces like eBay or Etsy are available to help you easily market your wares, but these all charge selling fees and commissions. So what about setting up your own online store?

The Woocommerce plugin is probably the most common software that is currently in use to set up your own online storefront. The main plugin is free, and there are a lot of optional paid add-ons and extras that you can opt to use depending on your needs.

Download and install the plugin, set up your products and descriptions, link your payment gateway, and voilà! You are ready to start selling.

The benefit of managing your own online store is that you get to keep 100% of the payment for your products. There are no fees or commissions going to a third party.

7. Write and Sell eBooks

image of eBooks

Are you a budding Ernest Hemingway, or can you weave a plot like John Grisham? If that’s the case, maybe you should write a book.

Once you’ve completed your masterpiece, you can market and advertise it via your website, and take money from sales.

If you do not want to do it all yourself, you can add marketing links on your site to direct visitors and potential buyers to Amazon.

Their self-publishing program offers much in the way of assistance to budding authors. One of the nice things is that after their costs, you are free to set the sales price of your book at whatever you want.

For example, if Amazon’s publishing costs are $3 you can set your sales price at $8 and net yourself $5 for each sale. Not bad! They will even help you design a snazzy cover for your book so it looks appealing to prospective buyers.

Whatever your literary talents, there is a market not just for novels, but also for manuals, guides, training material, travel brochures, and just about anything else you can think of.

This market is only limited by your imagination. If you can write it, you can sell it.

8. Members-Only Paid Site Areas

image of memberpress

Your site is your own to design and promote as you choose. With that in mind, there are great opportunities for monetizing your website based on the level of content you provide.

If you have detailed content for a specific topic, you may want to think about restricting access to certain areas by creating a “Members Area” that can be set up with fee-based access or subscriptions.

There are lots of plugins out there that will walk you through setting your site up with a members section. Here are just a few of the many plugins from which to choose:

These plugins will help you determine the areas and pages you want to keep as “members-only” access and will link to your chosen payment gateway. Paypal and Stripe are widely used, and several other gateways are supported by the listed plugins

9. Sell Your Site

image of flippa

When looking for ways to monetize their website, most people overlook the obvious option of selling the site itself. But it is a more common practice than you may think.

Some website designers make a living creating a nice niche site, building a bit of traffic, then selling it off for a profit.

You will need to decide if you will build or buy initially.

Will you build a website from scratch and build traffic? Or buy an existing site cheap and improve on traffic?

Both methods are viable and have a couple of advantages and disadvantages. At the end of the day, it really boils down to your personal preference.

Once you have your site, you will market and promote it to build your audience and traffic. The more traffic you have, the more money you will be able to make when you sell your site.

Several websites specialize in providing a platform to sell or “flip” websites. Here are some of the more popular ones:

  • Flippa
  • Webuywebsites
  • Empire Flippers
  • Bizbuysell
  • eBay
  • Sedo

10. Fees For Sponsored Posts

image of Sponsored Posts

If your website is in a specific niche or your posts consistently point to a specific product or service, then you may find that you are approached by a company or advertiser that would like to sponsor your content. Advertisers use tools like Ahrefs to weed out sites with high domain authority and propose a deal.

At first glance, this is a great way to monetize, with posts being sponsored for varying dollar amounts and being paid on a monthly or annual basis. Depending on the volume and quality of your website’s traffic, you could demand some nice sums of cash for each post or link.

Even if your site is older and not so active, advertisers may still make an offer if there are a lot of relevant backlinks contained in your pages. This helps with their own website’s SEO and is worth it for them to spend money on.

What could be better than being paid for content that you already wrote that’s just sitting on your site? 

Well, buyer beware! While this one seems like a no-brainer and an easy money maker, there are some large drawbacks to using this method. The biggest issue with monetizing your website in this way is that Google doesn’t like it much.

The search engine giant can easily find sites promoting sponsored content by their advanced algorithms and can penalize you for having certain types of links embedded in your pages. So while sponsored posts may make you money, they may hurt your rankings and reduce your overall traffic.

11. Email Marketing

image of Email Marketing

When creating a website most builders will add a “sign up” or “subscribe” button for their website visitors. This is typically to build a list of followers that regularly engage with your site and to keep them updated on news, events, new blog post releases, or whatever else it is that you want to share with them.

Well, did you know that you can put this list to good use by monetizing it?

If you have a good number of subscribers on your list, then this can be a viable option for you. The downside is that this is somewhat of a long-term strategy, and there can be costs associated with sending a high volume of emails.

The upside is that you can pick from different monetization strategies using this method.

Maybe you direct your users to click on an email link and get a payment based on Pay Per Click (PPC).

Perhaps your email is to promote a specific product and drives your users to the product description and purchasing page for one of your affiliate products. Once they buy, you get your commission.

Whatever model you use, this is a nice way to use your website traffic and subsequent subscribers to generate an income stream. If you focus on the continual growth of your list, then you have the opportunity to continually grow your profits and commissions using this method.

12. Set Up a Job Board

image of Job Board

If your site caters to a specific niche or industry and you have positioned yourself as an expert in your business, then creating a job board can be a great way to generate income from your website. There are a wealth of dedicated job boards, themes, and plugins available to choose from, so select one that suits your needs and install it on your site.

The monetization options are pretty straightforward: you can charge for potential employees posting jobs, you can charge job seekers a membership fee to access the site, or you could make it a subscription-based service with a monthly fee. Choose whatever works best for you.

Very specific niches will probably work best for this option.

There are always people looking for jobs, and there are always companies looking for good employees. But remember, you will be going up against some huge players like Indeed.com or Ziprecruiter.com.

There are literally hundreds of job boards out there from local to international, so it may be a challenge to get ahead of the field.

That being said, if you can offer value on a very specific and targeted niche, then a job board can work well and be very lucrative.

If you would like to set up a board, take a look at some of these options:

All of these provide job board functionality to varying degrees, and some have additional options and add-ons that you can buy and utilize as you need them. Once you have connected your payment gateway, you will be able to charge your fees for job postings and searches as you see fit.

13. Create a directory

image of directory site

Similar to the idea of creating a job board, this website monetization option works very well if you cater to a specific industry or niche. If your website traffic is substantial and your visitors are all seeking information about a certain industry or service, then a directory can be useful and a great way to garner fees.

Think about services like Angie’s List or Thumbtack. These sites have made a whole business from listing other businesses. And you can too.

You can set up your directory site using whatever criteria you wish. Region or city? Industry or size of business?

Whatever the specifics are, the point is that your website users will pay a fee to be listed on your website’s directory. This way they can leverage some of your traffic and turn visitors into their own lead source.

Potential clients looking for services will have a database of your users and experts to select from and contact. You could even charge them a members fee to browse the directory. Win-win!

14. Offer Private Coaching

image of Private Coaching

Selling your services via your site or completing freelancing gigs were covered earlier in the article; however, private coaching is a little bit different and can be a very lucrative option. Using your website to promote your services, you can offer packages with varying levels of expense and interaction for private coaching or consultancy services.

Watching tutorials or online videos is all well and good, but there is an increasing market for customers who want direct contact and the personal touch of being able to consult with an actual person.

Consulting, training, and business coaching are all sought after skills. Once you determine how much or little to charge, this can be a good money-spinner.

Decide what services you will offer, then advertise them via your website. You could provide support online or via chat or messaging services, or provide one-on-one consulting services for an hour a week via Skype or Facetime. The options are endless, and the profits can be large.

If you are an expert in your field, you can charge top dollar for your consulting services. The only downside is that you may be limited to how many clients you can avail yourself to. However, the profits from this particular monetization method should help negate any issues.

15. Become a Lead Source

image of lead source

Once your website traffic is high and you have a good number of users, you may be able to become a lead source for other businesses. Companies are always on the lookout for ways to generate more business, so selling them your information may be an option.

If your business is about home improvement and you have a list of signups or candidates who have shown an interest in your services, then that list would be useful to suppliers of building goods, or to a kitchen designer perhaps. The opportunities for lead generation services are almost limitless.

Be careful of data protection rules and if you promised “no spam” to your users, then it may not be quite ethical to pass on your subscribers’ information. But if done correctly, this method can pay quite nice dividends.


It will take some time and effort to incorporate monetization methods into your website, but as you can see from this list, there are many options to choose from.

Some are quite easy to implement; some are a little more complex. Start with some options that you feel comfortable with, and go from there.

The important thing is to incorporate something. Your website is a valuable money-making tool, so you don’t want to miss opportunities to generate income streams from it.

As you become more adept at utilizing some of the easier methods, you can think about adding some of the more creative monetization methods and improving your profits.

If you have already implemented monetization methods on your own website, what have you found works best for you?

Leave a Comment: