Blogging is something that started out as a simple way to enable any mortal (not just the big dogs) to share opinions, express points of view or communicate news and events online in an easy and affordable fashion.
However, in the beginning many people did not even know what a blog was and least of all that it was something with actual potential for profits.
Almost 90% of the early bloggers just did it as a hobby or to satisfy their personal passion for a topic or a cause, so you would see a lot of blogs with a lot of followers that were not actually making nor looking to make money, in part because they did not intended to do so in the first place.
However, those bloggers and a whole new wave of them opened their eyes to a blog's full potential from an economic standpoint, and that is where it all started as a business model in class of its own.
Nowadays blogging is in many ways better than a simple website, but probably what makes a blog more powerful and unique is its inherent ability to connect dynamically with visitors in the form of RSS feeds, blog archives and such, particularly if you are working in a platform like WordPress.
A blog can actually help you establish a very close relationship with your readers and make them your friends and then your costumers, but in order for that to happen there are several things you must do:
First, it is important that your blog looks professional. The days of the simple Blogger blog with default templates are over, unless you are a very well established blogger where that probably will not matter.
But if you have yet to establish your web presence and relevance, you need all the help you can get, and that means that you have to make the best first impression you possibly can, because people are just getting to know you, so you want them to think … this is a great website (or blog) !.
Websites and blogs alike are getting better and better from a design standpoint and they are increasingly offering more and more ways for visitors to connect and interact with them thus capturing the loyalty of their readers.
If you have a simple blog with no visual appeal and no way for your readers to connect with you, you might get a few bookmarks and maybe gain some popularity, but in the end you will lose the opportunity to keep many of your visitors as your loyal followers and potential paying costumers.
Secondly, you will want to provide good content and internal linking within your blog so that your readers find many reasons to stay and keep navigating through your blog. For example, you must have a place in your sidebar dedicated to recent posts or maybe the most popular posts.
This entices your reader to see what is new or what articles are the best ones, thus keeping him or her longer in your territory and increasing the potential for a profitable transaction to take place.
In a nutshell, the best way to make money blogging is to start strong with a professional look, good organization and good content, while being aware of what to do and what not to to avoid the common pitfalls in the blogging business.