If you want to be a successful freelance writer, you must have your own self-hosted blog or website. It is no longer a choice if you want your prospective clients to take you seriously. The good news is that investing in a domain and web-hosting is relatively inexpensive and you can choose from a wide range of options. The annual fee for a domain is as little as $10 and you can buy web-hosting for just $1 a month! (I recommend two companies: Hostica.com and ZNetLive.com)

Once you set up your blog, you can start to make money from it almost immediately. One of the most effective and often overlooked ways to monetize your blog is to create a resource page. A resource page is a separate page on your blog that has links to products and services in your niche preferably that you have used yourself and found useful.

So, how does setting up a resource page make you money? Simple! Use affiliates links for most of the items in your resource page. Using affiliate links means you will be paid a commission each time someone purchases a product or uses a service that you recommend on this page.

Once you create your resource page, provide an easy way for your readers to go to your resource page. The best way is set up a link in your navigation bar at the top of your blog or in the sidebar.

Use these five tips to maximize the effectiveness of your Resource Page:

  • Include only the products, services and links in your resource page that you have actually used yourself and found useful.
  • Add short and balanced reviews of each product including your experience and recommendations.
  • Include some free products and services in your list of resources that are likely to be helpful to your target audience.
  • Arrange the links in your resource page in different categories. This will make it easier for your readers to quickly find the product they want.
  • Try to make your resource page as attractive as possible by including graphics, and if possible, audio and video clips.

Later on, you can monitor the number of clicks you get for each link. This can help you to identify items that aren’t getting any clicks and you can choose to replace them with links to other products.

Benefits of a Resourceful Resource Page

  • Unlike other tactics such as Pay-per-Click marketing and banner ads on other sites, using your resource page for affiliate marketing is free.
  • Your resource page is an unobtrusive way to monetize your blog since you are not forcing anyone to view it or hard-selling any of the products in it.
  • Your readers will appreciate it because all the products and services they may need are conveniently located in one place and your recommendations are based on your personal experience.

Before you set up your resource page, visit the resource pages of a few other successful internet marketers and bloggers and check out their list of resources. For example, check out Aneeta’s resource page, which she has arranged in three categories: http://howtotellagreatstory.com/resources-for-storytellers/

Affiliate marketing using links in the resource page of your blog is a discreet form of marketing, which adds to its effectiveness. Though, it is not commonly used in the blogging world, it can be surprising lucrative. Make sure, you set up your resource page and keep revising it regularly.

(1 May 2013)

Rohi Shetty is a medical doctor, Vipassana meditator, writer, editor, translator and blogger. His short stories and articles have been published online and in print.

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