Travelling around the world and making a living from documenting this journey is a reality for some travel bloggers. Whilst some travel bloggers make this dream lifestyle look like a doddle, a lot of hard work goes on outside of the infinity swimming pool photoshoots!
Introduction to making money as a travel blogger
Travel blogging is more than just writing about holidays you have been on! To be a successful and revenue-generating travel blogger, you need to be consistently putting out high quality content. It takes time to build an audience and to attract the all-important search traffic from Google that brings you relevant readers.
Don’t expect to be earning overnight but with some dedication there are lots of opportunities to make money from your passion!
Content, content, content
As mentioned above, publishing quality content is the only sure-fire way to grow your readership and earning potential. Content can come in many forms:
- Written content on your website
- Images/short-form video content on Instagram
- Images/infographics on Pinterest
- Short-form insight on Twitter
- Live streams on Facebook, YouTube and Twitch (see Travel & Outdoors category here)
- Videos uploaded to YouTube
Many successful travel bloggers will focus their content creation efforts on a specific niche such as family travel, travelling with a disability, 48hr city breaks, low budget travelling or luxury holidays. A key benefit of taking this approach is that if you keep producing content for that niche, you are offering more value for the same audience.
Building up a loyal following who know, like and trust you is a huge factor when it comes to monetising your blog and social media channels. All of the tips on how to make money as a travel blogger below will work best if you have a following.
Ways to make money as a travel blogger
Here are the money making methods we are going to cover in this article:
- Sponsored posts
- Affiliate marketing
- Paid brand campaigns
- Freelance writing
- Information products
- Licensing images
1. Sponsored posts for travel bloggers
One of the more traditional revenue streams for bloggers in all sectors are sponsored posts. As the name suggests, brands will pay you to promote their product or service on your blog as part of a content piece.
Each sponsored post brief is different; some companies will be looking to post pre-written content that reads much more like an advertorial whilst others will give you free reign to write in your own style with a simple, relevant reference.
Tip: remember that you are required to disclose that you got paid for that article / brand mention. Ask us if you have any questions on disclosure!
The amount you can charge for a sponsored post depends on a variety of metrics. These metrics include, but are not limited to:
- Domain Authority (Find yours here)
- Trust Flow (What is this? Find out here)
- Average Monthly Unique Visitors
- Relevance to your core and popular content
- Social media reach
- How much work is required to meet the brief
- Whether audio and/or visual work is required
- Preferential article placement e.g. homepage for a specific time period after publication
- Whether any product or service is offered as part of the package
Need help pricing your sponsored post opportunities and attracting brands to work with? Get in touch with us!
2. Affiliate marketing for travel bloggers
Affiliate marketing is a way to earn money from the product suggestions within your content. As a travel blogger, you are likely to be talking about services you have used. If the reviews are positive then it is likely that you are influencing others to purchase from that company. This is all tracked through unique links that tells the company that you sent the customer.
Forging a partnership with tens if not hundreds of companies to get a referral commission on each sale can be a lot of work for little short-term rewards. So, meet your new best friend: Skimlinks*.
Skimlinks is the market-leading tool to convert your normal external links to affiliate links. If you are using a major blogging platform, such as WordPress, you can simply add one line of code (you don’t need to be technical!) and all links that can be converted to affiliate links will be automatically!
Not sure what sort of companies pay for your referrals? Here is a selection to get you thinking about the opportunity:
- Feel Unique
The beauty of affiliate marketing is that you don’t need to create additional content to earn money. This is a simple way of making money from your current content and focusing 100% on the best products and services rather than just the ones that pay you an upfront fee to promote them.
Readers and viewers of blogs and social media accounts are used to #ad, *affiliated and other ways of expressing that you are getting paid if they take action. Publish it and be proud about it!
We can help you find the most-relevant and highest-paying affiliate programmes for your site. Just ask!
3. Paid brand campaigns for travel bloggers
Brands are increasingly aware that there is an opportunity to maximise their “traditional” media spend by working with influencers to amplify the message. A good example is a new TV ad launch from a travel brand that showcases their service that is then followed up with some real-life feedback and stories from influencers.
We, as consumers, are much more likely to by in to a narrative from a person that we know (or feel like we know) than a straight-up brand advert. This is where bloggers come in to their own with the value they can bring to a campaign!
These campaigns can include trips and events to immerse you in the product the company wants you to start shouting about. You can finally add #presstrip to your Instagram story picture!
How do you get on to these media plans? Well, the PR agency handling the campaign may get in touch with you directly. To give yourself the best chance of being considered for high quality campaigns, consider getting represented by a talent agency for bloggers.
Tip: make sure your contact page is linked to in your footer to help even the laziest of outreach executives get in touch with you!
4. Freelance writing
Publications who want to cover a specific event or destination will often use the services of travel bloggers to fulfil these briefs. It is expensive to send an in-house reporter to a far flung holiday resort to write up a single piece of content so a blogger who has recently been can be a great alternative.
You will be paid as a one-off commission but if the quality is what the publication expects, they are likely to be in touch again.
Tip: clearly list all of your recent trips that you are comfortable to write in-depth articles about for third party publications on your blog. Before you go, make it loud and clear on Twitter that you are going and are open to commissions. You never know who may be interested in your thoughts and words (for money)!
5. Information products
Most of the content you give away on your blog and social media channels is likely to be free of charge to access. Some bloggers have done very well out of information products that their audience have purchased from them.
Ideas on information products that travel bloggers can create and sell:
- A complete guide to [destination]
- Pocket guide to travelling as a vegetarian in Asia
- Video guide to editing holiday snaps
- How to fly business but only pay for coach
These products can be visual guides, written content downloadable as an eBook or PDF, video or audio content. Gumroad is a great to take payment and distribute the content through a single link.
6. Licensing images
Your pictures are ace, right? Everyone tells you how much they love your travelling photos. Now let them put their money with their mouth is with an easy plugin like Sell Media that allows them to buy the snap for their own use.
Whether people want the image for postcards or to use on their own blogs, making it easy for people to buy your images is an obvious and easy way to make money as a travel blogger!
We help travel bloggers to make money so you can focus on quality content creation. Get in touch to see what we can do for you!
*Affiliate link. If you sign up to Skimlinks through that URL, we would earn some revenue. This is an example of a very simple affiliate disclosure.