I’ll admit that I am a wannabe personal finance blogger. The first domain name I ever bought was targeting the keyword phrase “personal finance.” It is a crowded niche and I couldn’t select a definitive unique selling proposition.
If you read a lot of personal finance blogs like me, you probably noticed the number of them that monetize with Google AdSense. There are ads on almost every one.
How can this be when so many “make money online” gurus tell us to avoid monetizing with ads?
Personal Finance Keywords Make Money
As you can see the top three keywords are perfect for personal finance blogs. In fact, the majority of the top 20 keywords in this infograph are personal finance related keywords. Google must love personal finance blogs–they are making them some cash!
In most niches, the cost per click for keywords related to the content of the site is so low that it really does not make much sense to use Google AdSense. However, in the personal finance niche it makes perfect sense even with a small amount of traffic. Check out one of the popular personal finance blogs ( Get Rich Slowly, The Simple Dollar, The Consumerist) and notice the kind of advertisements that pop up in the sidebars. If the ads don’t represent the infograph above, then clear your browser’s cache and history and refresh the page (sometimes ads can be give to you based on your browsing history not the content of the page).
Personal Finance Bloggers Who Monetize with AdSense
ChristianPF Monetization with Bob Lotich
ChristianPF is the leading personal finance blog in the Christian niche of the personal finance blogging community. He has been able to recruit additional bloggers as contributors to create content. These recruits gain credibility and visitors to their own sites, most of which have a Christian focus to personal finance as well.
One of the best ranked posts on ChristianPF is the epic article, “How to Make Money with a Blog.” It has nearly 2,000 links and 900 Facebook shares, 72 Tweets, and 52 +1s at the time of this posting. In it he shares some great tips for monetizing with Google AdSense.
Consumerism Commentary by Flexo
Maybe best known for the Consumerism Commentary Podcast, Flexo and his crew focus their monetization on the AdSense revenue from their site. You can see the number of ads on their site. It may be a bit distracting as a reader, but you can’t deny the data in the infograph above. Personal finance keywords make money.
Who Else Uses Google AdSense?
Search around on the personal finance blogs and you’ll see how common it is. Start with the Yakezie Network, the top personal finance blog network, and do some exploring. You’ll notice that many of these blogs use AdSense, including:
Personal Finance Bloggers Who Avoid AdSense
Man vs. Debt with Adam Baker
Maybe the best example of a personal finance blogger who avoids Google Ads is Adam Baker from Man vs. Debt. Baker has a large audience of online entrepreneurs and was able to dabble in various other niches in his young career as a blogger. He is loved by both the travel community and the minimalist bloggers. Recently he has had various successes with product launches and teamed up with Corbett Barr to develop The Hustle Project.
His next big thing will be to open up again his membership site, You vs. Debt, which seems to be a great success.
I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi
A the opposite end of the spectrum of personal finance strategies but in the same arena for blog monetization strategies is Ramit Sethi from I Will Teach You to Be Rich. Ramit is a popular author, but he doesn’t make his money off of the royalties from his book. His real money comes form his products: Scrooge Strategy, Earn 1k, Negotiate a Lower Rent, Find Your First Profitable Idea.
Making Money from Google AdSense
In so many ways using AdSense seems like the most effective form of passive income. You create content, get traffic, and make money on ad-clicks from your visitors. Of course, it is much more challenging than that. You need a lot of traffic to make a significant amount of money from ads on a blog. However, the advantage that personal finance bloggers is that one click might make ten or even one hundred times more per click when compared to the pennies you make in some niches.
Think strategically about whether Google AdSense is right for you and your niche. Sign up for Google AdSense yourself and get an idea of how much you would pay as an advertiser for your keywords. If you’re talking pennies, then focus your efforts on other monetization strategies.