How to Make Money With a Gardening Blog – [BLOG REVIEW]


Would you like to earn a full-time income by blogging about your hobby, too?
Many of the blogs I review on this website generate serious money - month after month!
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In today’s Blog Review, we’ll be taking a look at how to make money with a gardening blog. The blog post I’ve picked for this review is Build a D.I.Y Lighting System on You Grow Girl by Gayla Trail.

Gayla Trail is a writer, artist and photographer. She’s the author of five books about urban organic gardening and her work has been featured in O Magazine, New York Times and Organic Gardening Magazine. She started You Grow Girl because she felt there was a lack of representation of young, urban gardeners on shoestring budgets in gardening media.

The result is a blog that promotes “exploration, excitement and a d.i.y approach to growing plants without the restrictions of traditional ideas about gardening.

At the end of this post, you’ll know exactly how you can earn money with your very own gardening blog.

 

The Gardening Blog At a Glance


  • Name: You Grow Girl
  • OwnerGayla Trail
  • Address: http://yougrowgirl.com
  • Started year: 2000
  • Alexa Global Rank: 1,007,757
  • Alexa US Rank: 217,887
  • Backlinks: 674
  • Top 3 Traffic: United States / South Africa / India
  • Top 3 Keywords: cardoon / pink peppercorn / growing sweet potatoes

YouGrowGirl Overview

The First Impression


The very first thing I notice when I open the post is the square photo of tomatoes on the right hand side of the website. It really draws your attention of your eyes, and this is most likely done on purpose. Because if you click on the link, you’ll land on the website for Gayla’s own seed shop.

Selling your own products can be very lucrative, as all of the generated revenue goes to you. As opposed to being an affiliate, where only a fixed percentage or dollar amount lands in your pockets. Even though running an affiliate business can be lucrative, selling your own products has great potential of earning you even more.

While scrolling down the page, we can find more banners for Gayla’s seed shop. This gives the visitor more chances to see the ad, which might increase click-through rate (CTR) as long as the creative is attractive and targeted enough.

YouGrowGirl Tomatoes

The Money is in The List


Right below the tomato banner is a single-field form, where you’re supposed to enter your e-mail address and sign up to a newsletter (or to “Get Weekly Inspiration”). When you sign up to a newsletter, you’re added to what’s called an e-mail list.

Basically, you’re giving the blog owner permission to send you e-mails. This can also be very lucrative, as it gives the blogger a chance to promote products and services to you repeatedly, and over a longer period. It helps the blogger build a relationship with you, and “warms you up” before they start promoting products to you. This typically results in a higher conversion rate. (CR or CVR)

There’s also an opt-in form at the bottom of the article, right below the author image. Placing an opt-in field close to your author image builds trust, and clearly tells the reader that the e-mails will be coming directly from you, and not a 3rd party or spammer.YouGrowGirl OptIn

Making Sense With AdSense


At the bottom of the right sidebar is yet another banner, but this one is not pointing to the seed shop. It’s actually served from Google’s own ad network called AdSense.

I definitely approve of the way Gayla places these ads. Ads from a network should in most cases be viewed as a last resort to get some monetary value out of your visitor. It should never interrupt the flow of the user experience and lure your visitors away to your competitors until you’re absolutely certain that you cannot convert them yourself.

Ad networks should be used as the safety net when all else fails. They should catch that reader who has browsed so far down your sidebar that you’re certain they’ve missed or ignored all your other promotions.

This gardening blog does an excellent job implementing that strategy!

(Excuse the Swedish in the ad. I view it on my PC, after all.)YouGrowGirl AdSense

High-Quality Content


Gayla provides the reader with lots of helpful tips, which is essential to making money with a blog. You need to keep giving value and actually solve a problem for your readers.

This particular post is 1669 words, which is great! You should always try to keep your content lengthy in order to help Google find keywords on your site. However, don’t add words just to have them there. Make sure that your words serve a purpose. Sometimes it’s better to keep your posts shorter, if you’ve made your point within those words.

Always focus on the reader when you’re writing your posts. If it’s difficult for you to read or understand, it probably is for your reader as well.

Gayla also shows the readers what parts she’s been using to build her Lighting System, and even suggests cheaper variants that work just as well. (This is a prime example of helping your readers)

The one thing I’d want to change is the length of the paragraphs. Splitting up the paragraphs and making them shorter would vastly improve readability and, very likely, time on page.

 

Linking Like A Pro Affiliate


The post contains several Amazon affiliate links. They’re not randomly scattered across the article, but actually placed in strategically relevant places. The links she posts are relevant to the subject she’s currently addressing. As an example, see the following screenshot:

YouGrowGirl embedded link

As I mentioned, Gayla tips the reader about parts that are cheaper, but work just as well as the ones she’s used. As she does so, she includes an affiliate link to Amazon through which the reader can purchase the component.

YouGrowGirl affiliate link

Throughout the article, I’m counting 7 affiliate links. In my opinion, it’s a little bit on the high end. However, Gayla may have reached another conclusion by running A/B tests on her blog. (I recommend always doing this, by the way)

The Gardening Blog Package


So we’ve taken a real life example to learn how to make money with a gardening blog. We’ve analyzed an established blog in the gardening niche, to find out how that specific blog makes money.

To recap, these are the 5 strategies used by YouGrowGirl:

  • Links to Gayla’s own store. (owned products)
  • Opt-in fields for an e-mail list.
  • Affiliate links to Amazon.
  • Google AdSense banners.
  • High-quality content.

The most important strategy on this website is definitely the content. Without the content, I would’ve never found Gayla’s blog on Google. Google probably wouldn’t have ranked it as high as they did, without a proper content strategy in place. Whether it’s intentional can be discussed, but the fact of the matter is that the content is there and it worked.

So, now you know what strategies to use. It’s your turn to get your gardening blog to earn some money!

Let me know in the comments if you need any help or have any questions. I’d be more than willing to help out!

To your success!


Would you like to earn a full-time income by blogging about your hobby, too?
Many of the blogs I review on this website generate serious money - month after month!
>>> Click Here to Learn How with My #1 Recommended Training Platform!

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