If you’ve just launched a website for your trade association, it’s a great time to be excited. It can mean new avenues for engagement and income streams for your trade organization. But monetizing your website isn’t always the easiest or most organic thing that you’ve tried to do. Instead, it helps to have a strategy and think through different ways that you can cultivate online revenue streams.
Through experimentation and a willingness to test the waters, you’ll quickly develop an idea of what works and how profitable the return on your investment of time and effort really is. Here are four strategies that can help you monetize your site.
SEE ALSO: 5 Ways Your Association Can Boost Non-Dues Revenue
The right web design can help make advertising unobtrusive for users yet effective for advertising partners. By partnering with the right kinds of advertisers – companies that offer products and services with your market in mind – you’re actually creating value for your readers. Advertising can be a profitable revenue stream that doesn’t require you or your team to do anything more than you’re already doing to maintain and publish your site. Advertising can appear on the website itself, in your newsletters, or through pop-ups as visitors read different articles on your site.
Readers are hungry for more content. From exclusive discussions with some of your top writers to webinars with experts in your field, today’s online video technology makes it possible to offer paid experiences to your membership with ease. Many consumers actually place a high premium on these kinds of offerings, since they’re getting access to the expertise or insights of interesting people without having to invest a significant amount of time and money traveling to a seminar or conference. Over time, this can become a major component of your business plan. Options for webinar software to accomplish this in a seamless, professional way is available for a reasonable cost that will fit nearly any budget.
Affiliate revenue is a fee that you’re paid to sell items for other brands. It’s different than advertising, which focuses more on dedicated real estate on your website to what is clearly an advertisement. With affiliate revenue, you’re doing more handselling and perhaps even endorsing the product to your users. Affiliate fees range from just a few percent for major retailers like Amazon to as much as 90% for digital products found through marketplaces like Clickbank. Remember with affiliate revenue that you’re staking your brand reputation on the products and services you recommend, so stick with items that will really speak to your customers and that you’ve personally reviewed for quality.
Paid post opportunities
Another popular way to monetize a website is by offering people the opportunity to contribute a sponsored post or paid guest post. Not only can this help you flush out your content offerings, but it’s a great way to build relationships with key brands in your field. Some of the opportunities to consider include allowing companies to syndicate white papers on your site and contribute targeted sponsored posts on a key issue that they’re facing. The cost for sponsored content can vary, from $50 to thousands, depending on how much you charge.
Figuring out the best ways to monetize your site and building that into your launch plan is smart. It will help ensure that you see a real return on investment as soon as possible from your site and help accelerate the speed at which your revenue grows over time.