The blogging industry plays a very important role in today’s internet-dependent world.
Bloggers can build communities, bring customers to other businesses, and provide endless informative content to millions of readers.
But what exactly is blogging?
Is blogging a business?
Yes, blogging is a business of sharing your thoughts, knowledge, and insights through online content – from articles to videos. Bloggers make money by displaying advertisements, promoting another brand, selling their own products, and more.
Bloggers’ main objective is to build their online reach and authority by publishing high-quality content. They can then leverage their reach to create awareness, interest, and sales for themselves or another brand.
Most people start a blog as a hobby. But after earning an average of $2,000 per month, most bloggers will consider turning it into a full-time business.
If you want to turn blogging into a career, check out my step-by-step guide on how to be a full-time blogger!
Okay – so blogging can be considered as a business.
But what exactly makes it a business?
Let’s talk about that for a bit.
How blogging is a business?
A business can be industrial, commercial, professional, or engaged in other money-making activities. Blogging can fit in three of those categories.
- Commercial – Promoting and selling products
- Professional – Offering consultation services, taking on freelance work, etc.
- Other money-making activities – Publishing posts paid by companies, offering subscription-only “premium” content, etc.
So, yes! A blog can be considered a business.
What kind of business is a blog?
A blog is classified as a digital publishing business. That’s because a blog operates mainly by publishing content on the internet, including articles, photos, and videos.
Most blogs start off as a sole-proprietorship business at first. As a blogger, you have full ownership of the business – handling all losses, debts, and profits.
However, some bloggers decide to form an LLC or Limited Liability Company, which legally separates your business and personal assets. The usual reason behind this is the protection of the blogger’s personal assets from the blog’s liabilities.
A lot of bloggers also adopt a business structure because personal income is taxed higher in a lot of countries. In some cases, blogs are turned into partnerships between owners who will contribute their money, labor, and expertise.
The good news, you don’t have to worry about any of that for now.
Just focus on building your blog first and writing articles about relevant topics. Trust me – no one will bother you.
After learning about the type of business a blog can fit into, what about bloggers?
What exactly do they do?
Let me tell you a little about what bloggers do and the role they play in the internet age.
What bloggers actually do in the blogging business?
The business side of blogging isn’t something you should underestimate.
Bloggers pretty much run the internet – producing the bulk of all online content published daily. They account for over 6 million blog posts per day, which amounts to over 2.5 billion per year.
Apart from publishing content, full-time bloggers also focus on making money through a number of sources. They can get paid commissions by promoting another company’s products, display paid advertisements, selling their own services, and more.
The list of ways how bloggers make money is huge. To save you time, I have prepared a list of 89 ways to make money with your blog. Check it out!
Now that we got that out of the way, let’s talk about the number of people who blog as a business.
How many bloggers are there who blog as a business?
Data reveals that over 30% of bloggers plan to start a blog with the intention to make money. Since there are 600 million blogs today, it’s reasonable to say that roughly 180 million blogs are built as businesses.
Take note that this is just an estimate. With countless bloggers starting and quitting every day, it’s impossible to calculate the exact number of full-time bloggers.
It’s safe to say that the number of bloggers grows or declines based on the state of the industry. That’s why I want to discuss the question that you probably have in your mind since you clicked this post:
Is blogging profitable and will be profitable in 2021 and beyond?
There are plenty of blogs that make at least $2,000 per month, while some easily make five to six figures. As long as there are people searching online for information, the blogging industry will continue to be relevant and profitable.
And for bloggers who do it right, it will be highly rewarding.
For example, a food blog Show Me The Yummy was already making over $46,367 monthly in 2016. There are also multi-million-dollar bloggers like Timothy Sykes and Jermaine Griggs of Hear and Play.
Long story short, yes – blogging is a profitable business if you know what you’re doing.
Alright, we’ve now established that blogging as a business is definitely profitable.
But it’s definitely not a walk in the park.
That said, let’s talk about the pros and some of the cons of blogging as a business.
What are some pros and cons of blogging as a business?
Blogging, in general, comes with a ton of great benefits for professionals, aspiring authors, and entrepreneurs. It can help advance your career, build your negotiation skills, achieve your dream lifestyle, and more.
You can check out my in-depth post about the benefits of blogging along with some examples you can borrow inspiration from.
When talking about blogging as a business specifically, here are the pros and cons you should be aware of:
Pros of blogging as a business
Cons of blogging as a business
Starting a blog as a business: Top five tips
Ready to build your first blog?
The process itself is easy, but you need to do a lot of planning to ensure its viability.
Below are 5 things you should include in your “master plan” to blog as a business:
1. Make passion your business
Choosing your blog topic isn’t fun, but it’s a crucial stage that can ensure (or doom) your long-term success.
Ideally, you need to pick an industry in line with your “Ikigai” – a Japanese word that means “reason to live.” It’s at the dead center of what you love, what you’re good at, what the world needs, and what you can monetize.
Once you’ve found your Ikigai, you need to identify the profitable niches within it.
This takes a lot of research and attention to detail. To help you with this, read my step-by-step guide on how to pick a great niche for your blog.
2. Decide your business structure
If you want to treat your blog as a business, you need to make it official and decide on a business entity.
Let’s go over the two most common options:
A lot of bloggers stick with a sole proprietorship. This means you’re the sole owner of your business and are responsible for all assets and liabilities.
In most cases, there’s no need for legal paperwork when running your blog as a sole proprietor. Just be sure to check with your local government if you need to acquire a business license.
Most states in the U.S., in particular, require bloggers to obtain a general business license.
Limited Liability Company or LLC
Although an LLC is slightly costlier than a sole proprietorship, it does come with a few advantages.
For one, an LLC will protect your personal assets if your business goes through a financial or legal rough patch. LLC businesses are also generally taxed lower than sole proprietorships.
3. Trademark your blog
Original blog posts are automatically protected by copyright. However, if you’d like your protection to be enforceable, consider registering your blog name and logo as trademarks.
A trademark can be anything that is used to identify a brand. This could be a logo, your blog name, symbol, or a combination of these elements.
To trademark your blog, you’ll need to contact or visit your local patent office.
4. Determine your capital
Hobby bloggers tend to spend around $100 on their first year. Full-time bloggers, however, may choose to spend up to $1,000-$2,000 upon starting.
This cost should cover the essentials for blogging as a business.
Of course, you don’t have to buy everything during your first month. Just focus on what you need during launch.
5. Build a content plan
Serial bloggers who own multiple websites often have a content plan – complete with categories and a list of topic ideas. A good strategy is to look for the top websites in your chosen niche to get an idea of what to write.
Here’s a goal for you: try to have 130-150 pieces of content within 18 months.
That’s a critical time period when you should be hard at work monitoring and optimizing your content strategy.