Making money from forums?
December 18, 2012 Promotional Tips
Over the past few years, and recently, I have had many people muse over the question, how do you make money off your forums? I know many people run their forums just as hobbies, or because the genuinely love to run the community, and I was the same when running many of my forums. This is fine, and works well for many people, but forums, like many other websites have costs to keep them running and improving. As it is many people’s hobbies to run the forum, they often put in money from their jobs or other sources, and don’t rely on money earned from the website as a way/method of improving and financing their forums. I mean forums have a lot of costs, there is:
> Web Hosting
> Staff Wages
and I could go on and on. I have owned many paid and free software forums, trust me, I know about the hard yards.
What if there were ways you could make some money off all of your hard work and the hours you put into your forum?? Well keep reading if interested as I will outline a number of ways to successfully make money off your forums, and continue to do so in the future. All of the methods are covered in the Premium Promotion Secrets eBook along with many more.
> Advertisements: Offering paid advertisements can be one of the greatest ways to make income from your forum. The more active and better stature/reputation your forum has, the more money you will earn from these ads. You can run ads in a number of ways, including:
- Text Links
- Newsletter/Email Promotion
And there are other ways. I’m not talking about saturating your website with advertisements, but placing some tactical ads that gain you money and don’t detract from you website that much.
> Adsense: Most people have heard of adsense, but for those who haven’t, it is a service run by Google where you display their ads on your website, and you recieve a certain amount of money per view and per click of the ads. For really active websites, this can work well, but make sure you read the TOS.
> Services: Offering paid services can be a great way to gain money for your forum. The services have to be things people can’t get themselves, things that they can’t get for free, otherwise people won’t buy them. Example services could include:
- Graphics & Design
- SEO Services
- Posting & Commenting Services
and there are heaps more different and unique services you could offer to your members for a range of prices to earn money.
> Products: Similar to services, selling a product related to your forum can be a great way to make money. Make sure the product is again, something that people can’t get for free, something useful.
> Donations: I believe all forums should have a Paypal donate button on their homepage. There are a lot of forum users with a bit of money willing to donate some cash to forums that they enjoy and like. Google “Paypal donate code” or “Website donation code” and you will find many different ways to integrate it into your site.
> VIP Memberships: The VIP membership is an awesome way to reward members for giving/donating to your forum. For a fee, members receive the VIP benefits. The key here is making sure the VIP membership is something greater than the basic/normal memberships. People won’t part with their hard earned unless they are getting something good in return. So think about it and make sure you have something relevant and interesting for you VIP members.
> Offer Subdomains: Most big/good forums should have their own Top Level Domain (TLD) and Web Hosting. These two features would allow you to sell your subdomain to people to run their websites on. For example, a subdomain of Promotion Secrets would be http://subdomain.promotionsecrets.net. Thus people get to use your name and hosting to run their website.
> Offer Emails: Most webhosting companies allow you to host email addresses and thus this could allow you to sell custom email addresses with your domain. For example, you could have KMRock@promotionsecrets.net or Johnny@promotionsecrets.net and use these as your email.
> Sell Your Forum: Successful and big forums can sell for thousands and even tens of thousands if big enough, so good money can be made if you decide to move your forum along.
> Forum Sponsorship: You may have seen on big forums that another company has sponsored the forum. This is similar to advertising, but usually the sponsor seeks something more than just the advertising link/banner on the forum. A forum sponsor is a major part of the forum and as such is integrated into the forum framework, mentioned in posts etc.
So here was a few ideas and ways you can make good money from your forum. Good luck and start making some cash!