Hey there sea changers… Many of my recent posts have discussed how to get yourself started with an online business however one thing that is often asked of me is how to ‘make some money' from a blog that is already up and running. So with that in mind, let's have a look at my 7 ways to monetize a food blog this year.

Monetize a Food Blog - header

This is especially common in the niche we are discussing today in that many out there start their website simply listing their favorite recipes, or recipes for a particular diet or lifestyle etc. then wonder what they can do to make some extra money from their endeavors. So with that in mind, welcome to my post on how to monetize a food blog.

Before we begin however it is important to note that you may not want, or need to set all of these up right now. Some may not be viable for your site and some may not be accessible if your site is new, or not generating a lot of traffic as yet – but you can certainly keep these options in mind as your site starts to grow.

Monetize a Food Blog - social media stripe

So grab a drink, a notebook and let's see how we can make some money…

Note: This post is assuming that you have a working a website, blog or social media account within the food niche (or any niche for that matter really) and are looking to generate income from within it. If you need assistance with the development of an affiliate marketing or online business website, click here.

1. Affiliate Marketing

Our first method, affiliate marketing, is the process of earning commissions based on the promotion of food related products that are sold directly via the vendor. In this case, you can utilise your website or social media account to provide information and solve problems in regards to food, cooking, diets, appliances or just about anything else used by your readers.

There are a good number of food affiliate programs available in a number of lifestyle choices and/or dietary needs (vegan, keto etc.) as well as cooking styles such as BBQ etc. that can be found via a simple online search. For example, if you were looking to find affiliate programs to help you monetize a blog centred on the Paleo Diet, then simply type “affiliate: paleo” into your search engine:

Monetize a Food Blog - paleo programs

From here you can search through and find programs that:

  • Relate to your niche/problems that you are solving.
  • Have quality products – your brand can be severely damaged if you promote poor quality product.
  • Have solid payment and customer service arrangement.
  • Pay decent commissions.
  • Have good testimonials covering commission payouts and quality of product.

How is revenue earned?

As mentioned above, the trick here is to attract readers to your site via the provision of information and solving problems – which in the food niche, is probably what you have already been doing. I mean recipes are the ultimate problem solver aren't they? So, within the food niche, this can be undertaken via the inclusion of:

  • Recipes – “10 best recipes for that luxury dinner party” or “5 recipes for a children's birthday party” and so on
  • How to‘ posts and lists – such as “How to feed a family of 4 in 10 minutes”
  • Products rankings and comparisons of food preparation tools from different companies etc.
  • Process information outlines – e.g. discussing food preparation regimes etc.
  • Tips, tricks, hints and other general information.

Money is then earned by placing affiliate links to merchant/vendor sales pages within these posts. If your website visitor then chooses to make a purchase (such as your recommended food blender for example), they click on the link for redirection to the vendor site which processes and manages the sale, delivery and customer service requirements. Commissions are then paid to you as the website owner based on that sale.

When to action

Affiliate links can be loaded to a website as soon as it has been setup or a post written. Some affiliate merchants however will not accept you into their programs until your site generates a certain amount of traffic. Others, such as Amazon, will accept you immediately but on a trial basis which is terminated if you do not drive at least 3 sales to their site within the first 180 days.

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You too can start your very own online business here that can make you money from anywhere in the world!!

2. Multi Level Marketing

Multi-level marketing (MLM) programs are the mainstay of the ‘party plan’ world of products such as Tupperware, Mary Kay and Amway etc. and have recently become more popular within the food niche. Traditionally, the food side of things has been aimed more at the supplements market however recently there has been a few more pop up that are actually selling real food.

From the point of view of someone looking to monetize food blog content, MLMs provide access to products that can be marketed via post types as discussed in the Affiliate marketing section above. The basic premise of a MLM program is as follows:

  1. You join the program, either via referral from another person (known as your up line) or directly through their website.
  2. You promote the products of the company via your website.
  3. As you make sales, you offer incentives to your customers to sign up as a member of the program (there are different names for this but they all mean the same thing).
  4. That new member is then placed ‘underneath’ you in a hierarchical arrangement (known as your down line).
  5. You, and a number of levels of your up line, then gain extra commissions for everything they sell as well.
  6. If they manage to refer their customers into memberships, they also become a member of your down line allowing you to make up line commissions as well.

I think it has to be made clear here that MLM is not an easy platform to make money in and many require minimum monthly sales and recruitment targets in order to qualify for commissions. Not to mention that less than 1% of those that join the program make enough money to earn a living however if you are passionate about the product or company and have access to a good email or customer list, then there is definitely some money to be made.

Monetize a Food Blog - cooking 2

How is revenue earned?

If you use them in their basic capacity, MLM programs mirror affiliate marketing platforms in that you make a commission on every sale that you refer to them.

It is however the secondary aspect of these programs – and where the multi-level influences come from – that can really boost your revenue earning capabilities. As above, once you can build a downline then commissions are not only earned on the sales that you make but those that are made by your down line as well.

If this is something that you were interested in adding to your current website, there are however some things to check out before you join the program:

  • Some programs will not allow you to sell via your own website or social media – or online at all.
  • Others will only let you sell via a website internal to the program – i.e a personalised version of their main website.
  • Many require you to make minimum purchases per month.
  • Some charge cost to join the program.
  • Many pay commissions on a portion of the sales price only.

When to action

MLM programs can be joined at any time and generally will not be concerned with website traffic numbers. As mentioned above however, check their sales rules and regulations before attempting to implement their products onto your site.

3. Sell your own products

Of all the niches, this one is probably one with the greatest range of opportunities to sell your own products via your food blog. This process requires a little more work than some of the options above as you will need to purchase your products, create and affix your labels and manage orders and shipment but many food bloggers make some great money in this fashion.

Depending on the type of blog that you have there are so many options here that you could explore including the sale of:

  • Recipes – Ebooks, books, once off, lists and so on
  • Ingredient bundles – there is a guy round where I live who sells ‘spice bags' that contain all of the spices needed to make various Indian curries. They are packaged in single serve arrangements with a recipe to feed a family of up to 4. This could be managed for anything you can think of.
  • Starters kits – pastes, mixed herbs, pastas, bread making ingredients etc.
  • Tool kits – This could include all of the tools/utensils needed to make your own pasta, or pizza or cook meat in a smoker and so on.

There is so much more here but I think you get the picture. Alternatively, you could also choose to do down the ‘white labeling' path and purchase ‘brandless’ supplements from a vendor, add your own label and then on-sell them via your website (or platforms such as Amazon etc.). Some vendors will affix the labels that you send them and then manage the packaging and shipment for you (often referred to as dropshipping). This will cost you less to set up but obviously you will make less on the sale once they take their processing fee.

To find brandless items to sell as your own, you can again simply undertake some online searches. Again, as an example, let's look for whitelabelling opportunities within the Vegan niche. With this example, a search for “white label: vegan” found the following (a search for “Vegan: Private label” may also work here too):

Monetize a Food Blog - vegan whitelabel

Hmmm, there are a few vegan cosmetics sites here as well – maybe something you could branch out into if you are in the vegan food niche.

How is revenue earned?

This method mirrors basic retail operations where you:

  1. Create or source your products and add labels.
  2. Write about the products, their benefits, uses and problem solving capabilities.
  3. Provide links where customers can purchase them via sales pages on your own site or marketplace sites (Amazon, Shopify etc.).

As I have touched on above, the disadvantage here over affiliate marketing is that you will need to do all of the work in regards to packaging, shipping, sales and customer service. However on the plus side, you do hold the ability to set your own price meaning you can increase and decrease as demand or costs rise and fall.

When to action

Obviously this method can be organised at any time that suits you and your website. Some actually create their websites with their own products ready to sell. The only real influence here would be to ensure that any foodstuffs you are planning to sell have a good shelf life so that you are not stuck with stock whilst your site takes off.

Tip: One method that can be very effective in driving online traffic and sales is via the implementation of more traditional sales methods such as kiosks and market stalls etc. As people see and try your products, they can purchase from you there and then be directed to your website for future sales.

Get Away From the Rat Race and Work From Home

Anyone wanting to build an online business can get started using Wealthy Affiliate because it has all the tools you need!

You too can start your very own online business here that can make you money from anywhere in the world!!

4. Build a social media following

One problem that many face when dealing with the online sales of food and recipes is the struggle to clearly demonstrate two major intangibles – aroma and taste. Think of any video or TV show you have ever watched with a celebrity chef. They spend a lot of time explaining how the food should look as it is being cooked as well as the aromas they are experiencing. So if you are selling anything to do with food, then social media can assist you in this manner.

It has the power to reach thousands and allows you to target specific segments if you choose the correct platform. In terms of a food blog, if you are looking to set yourself up as an expert within the niche, then programs such as Instagram, YouTube or Pinterest will be your go to option.

This is great for visuals such as pictures and/or videos showing you working with food as well as using the utensils or appliances that you are discussing within your posts. And, if you are able to build a following you may even get noticed and be paid gazillions to use certain brands within your pics and videos – this takes time, but it does happen…

So… if you are handy with a camera then this does make a lot of food bloggers a good income via the following process:

  1. Take amazing photos and/or videos of your cooking exploits.
  2. Upload these to Social Media (Instagram and YouTube are popular within the food niche).
  3. Gain a good following because your photos and videos are so good and your food looks so amazing.
Monetize a Food Blog - stripe2

How is revenue earned?

In the main, funds are earned via the addition of website, affiliate or sales page links within your social media posts. However, as your following starts to grow, you can then become what is commonly known as an ‘influencer'. Influencers then earn their cash via:

  • Product placement.
  • Wearing, using or reviewing products in their social media or website posts.
  • Linking or adding hashtags for various companies on their posts.
  • Adding advertising banners to their social media (as above).

Note: This is a highly competitive market – especially within the food niche – so your social media management will have to be well managed and generate a huge following and interaction. That said, and as mentioned above, this can be an extremely lucrative income generating stream for food bloggers.

When to action

The advantage here is that social media is free however building a following takes time meaning it is never too early to get started – so start taking photos now and get them uploaded.

5. Placing ads on your site

Should you not wish to actually sell products on your site, or wish to give your website a bit of a ‘push', then placing advertising on your pages and posts can be a good way of making some passive income if your website has some decent traffic. The trick here obviously is to have enough advertising on your site to make some income, but not so much that your site just becomes annoying or worse, unreadable. There are a number of ways that you can make money from advertising on your page, including:

Pay per click ads

Pay per click ads are placed on your site or within search engine results based on the interests, internet use/search history, search behaviour and/or location of the reader. These can be utilised in one of two main ways dependent upon whether you are selling products via any of the methods listed above or not:

1. If you are not selling products on your site then you can try Banner ads. Banner ads are placed on your website and are shown to readers as they view your page and posts. You, as the owner of the site can generally determine how many ads are incorporated and what they look like (in terms of size etc.) but not on what types of ads they are. You are then paid a commission each time a reader clicks on the ad.

2. If you are looking to sell products via your site with any of the methods listed above, then you can try keyword advertising. In this case, links to your site are displayed at the top of search engine results pages based on the searches undertaken by the reader. If their searches match your chosen keywords (e.g. “vegetarian recipe ideas”), then your site will be placed at the top of search engine results.

This option really only works if you have saleable options on your page as unlike banner advertising, you will be charged a fee every time a reader clicks on the link to access your site – anywhere between $0.01 and $100 depending on the popularity of the keyword and competition. Once they do click on it however, they are directed straight to the page of you choice (usually a sales page) where their chances of purchase are much higher.

You can also load these ads onto your YouTube channel for extra exposure and earning capacity. Companies that manage this form of advertising include:

  • Google Adsence – Google's website ad product.
  • Microsoft Advertising – Bing and Yahoo service.
  • Infolinks – Offers both website ads and in post ‘text' ads – these are where they place ads within your posts on relevant keywords – keyword ads are usually double underlined.

Selling page space

These ads work in a similar fashion to pay per click ads however in these instances you are actually selling space on your site for more permanent advertising. These ads pay a higher commission but do not change based on the online behaviours of your readers. Companies offering this type of advertising include:

Social Media Advertising

This can also be a good way to increase traffic to your site and sales pages as well. Social Media platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest will allow you to place advertisements to boost your online presences and drive sales.

Monetize a Food Blog - recipe 2

How is revenue earned?

This one is simple – each time a reader clicks on your ad, you either get paid or redirect a reader directly to your purchase (money) pages to increase your chances of sales. If I am being honest, these advertising processes are generally a set-and-forget type scenario as they really do not generate any real income until your site starts to generate serious traffic.

As an example, on one site I placed 3 banner ads from Google Adsence once it reached abut 200 monthly viewers and it made about $1 per month. However, for another (currently running at about 3000 views per month), I paid $25 to place my site at the top of search engines and generated an extra 2000 clicks per week resulting in an extra $230 in sales.

When to action

Generally, the advertising brokers will not accept your site unless there is some traffic generated to it. I started at 200 monthly viewers but it is really up to you when you start. My main recommendation however would be to really consider where you want to have ads placed on your site – especially if it is new and you are still tweaking the set out.

6. Email lists

Email lists are one of the most effective means of generating revenue for you and your website. This is because once you have the ability to send your readers a direct email, you are able to then promote products, promotions and special deals directly to them without the need for them to search and locate your site. In general, you will need to do the following (in extremely abbreviated steps):

  1. Set up your email autoresponder and email list. Common Autoresponders include Aweber, iContact and Mailchimp.
  2. Add an ‘optin' to your website with an incentive to join (many sites give away products – in this case it would be a couple of free recipes or spice kits etc. – for free in return for their email address).
  3. Send emails to your list with extra information, bonuses and sales offers/promotions.

Note: It is critical that you only send emails to those who have ‘opted in' to your email list via your website or social media. Unsolicited emails are known as SPAM and generally not accepted or appreciated by those who receive them and can do your website and brand irreparable damage. Autoresponders will also cancel your service if they think that you are spamming.

How is revenue earned?

Revenue is not actually earned via the emails as such rather provide the opportunity for higher sales due to the ability to market directly to your reader list.

When to action

Most seasoned online marketers will tell you to wait until you are generating a decent amount of traffic before setting up this type of marketing. This is usually for two reasons:

  1. The cost of the autoresponder software – If you have a new site that is not earning any revenue then this might be a cost that you don't really need at this point. There are however some free ones out there with limited functionality.
  2. You don't yet have anything to offer – With so many websites and social media platforms out there, readers are becoming more and more hesitant to give out their email address information for fear of receiving yet another raft of emails. Unless you have a pre-prepared product such as a recipe book, meal program to match dietary lifestyle choices or training materials you may not have the necessary means yet to lure someone to sign up.

That said, as with all other traffic reliant revenue raising methods here, if you feel your site is ready for it, give it a shot.

Monetize a Food Blog - cooking

7. Offering coaching/assistance

Online coaching is a booming industry and one that you can certainly use to monetise your food site. Within a food blog, this can include:

  • Use of particular herbs and spices.
  • Overarching nutrition.
  • General cooking.
  • Recipe creation.
  • Food and wine matching
  • And so on.

Online coaching is generally offered via website posts, banners, popups or via your email lists with offers one on one or group coaching or mentoring.

How is revenue earned?

Revenue is earning by way of once-off training or recurring membership within your coaching program.

Note: This section refers to coaching and mentoring programs that you personally undertake with your readers and not affiliate marketing links that you may have to the coaching courses of others.

When to action

I once saw a post in an online Facebook marketing group that went like this:

“Hey guys, can anybody tell me how I could promote my new course on FaceBook marketing?”

Online coaching is all about credibility. Unless you are already an expert within your niche/field (especially within this niche where you are dealing with the food – after all, we know how ‘picky' people can be in this area) then it is probably not feasible to set up an online coaching course if you are just starting out in your business.

You need to have good quality content, high levels of knowledge and the runs on the board. However if you do have that expert knowledge at your disposal (such as years of experience as a qualified chef for example) then this could be what sets you apart from the rest.

Monetize a Food Blog - recipe


So there it is. Some fairly solid methods that you can utilise to monetize your food based website. As always, keep in mind that making money online is a long term process so just because you have some of these revenue earners on your site, it doesn't mean that you will see any immediate income. As always, patience is the key.

Have you tried any of the above methods? What worked well for you? What didn't work so well? Please share below.

Do you need some extra assistance with the right ways to monetise your food based site or do you need help in creating your very own affiliate marketing website?

If you are looking for a comprehensive training platform that can give you step by step tuition with the tools to develop and host your very own website, help to identify a good niche, content or keywords, assistance with managing affiliate programs, 24/7 support and access to some of the best affiliate marketing minds on the planet, then click on the graphic below to access your free starter membership – no credit card required.

Want to know more first? Then click on the following link to read more about Wealthy Affiliate.

Until next time

Have fun


Note: If you make a purchase from this page, there is a very good chance that I make a commission from it – these commissions do not increase your sale price. This may include sales made via Wealthy Affiliate.


Introducing Wealthy Affiliate, My #1 Recommendation for Setting Up Your Own Online Business

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When I started, I knew I wanted to work online, but had absolutely no idea where to begin! You see I had watched friends of mine run a sales party to sell essential oils and someone asked if they could just sell them online?

Then, as I sat on the bus heading into my office job, I started to wonder if I could do just that, sell essential oils online.

Anything to stop having to catch this bus to and from work every day right!

The trouble was, as I mentioned above, I had no idea how to even start.

So of course I started to look around online and found all these courses! They all promised me riches then took my money but left me with no riches!

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So I did that, joined Wealthy Affiliate that was it, and the rest as they say, is history!

But it doesn’t come without work!

That is the key here! I began on their starter membership and did the training! I then joined as a member and did some more training!

Each night after work, I would do a little more, then a little more.

And to cut a long story short, after 10 months I realized I didn’t really like writing about essential oils, so I sold the site for about $2000. But I had learned so much that I started another – about fishing and camping!

Then, after 18 months (by which time it had earned me close to $10k), I was offered $17k for the site, so I sold it too.

Now, through my travel blog, I’ve been able to fund my passion for travel and explore different places around the world.

In the past few months, I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to some amazing destinations, including Bali, Los Angeles, Dallas, Vancouver and Las Vegas.

The success of my travel blog has allowed me to fully fund my travels and explore new destinations with my family.

Steps to Creating a Successful Travel Blog - Me at Whistler

Try the Wealthy Affiliate as a Starter Member and Build your First Hub!

As you start your journey, Wealthy Affiliate is there for you with the most comprehensive training package I have ever seen – And as I have mentioned, I have used a few in my professional career trust me.

To get you started, Wealthy Affiliate has recently introduced the Hub.

The Hub

The hub is an AI based niche and website creation tool that will get you up and running with the foundation of your OWN business in just a few minutes. This includes:

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Wealthy Affiliate Review 24 - Hub screen

The hub makes the website creation process simple which allows you to get started on the training with a solid base and understanding of the processes.

All you need to do is choose your subject – which is known as your ‘niche’ – and follow the steps on the screen.

Oh, and as you run through the training below you may realize that what you created above is not exactly what you want. That’s ok, you can just create a new hub!

Wealthy Affiliate Training

Then as you continue your journey, the Wealthy Affiliate Hub is there for you with the most comprehensive training package I have ever seen – And I have used a few in my professional career trust me.

Above we discussed the use of the Hub to set up a website. Once you have done this, you will be able to access the “Step-by-Step Core Training”.

This is available to all members including starter members and will give you everything you need to know to continue to create your online business.

Wealthy Affiliate Review 24 - step by step core training

Member Training

There are also Live weekly classes taught by REAL industry experts on a range of topics like artificial intelligence (AI), SEO, YouTube, WordPress, PPC marketing and more.

wealthy affiliate master training

Great, What Else Does Wealthy Affiliate Have To Help You?

So, let’s keep this short, Wealthy Affiliate is a one-stop-shop platform that provides:

  • The Hub – this is the starting point and uses AI processes to assist you in determining your niche and creating your brand.
  • Complete training programs to assist with the development of your own affiliate marketing website in your own niche.
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  • AI Content article design and content creation
  • Domain name purchasing (you get a free domain when you upgrade to the Premium membership).
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The platform has been active for over 15 years with the original developers and owners, Kyle and Carson, still extremely active in its day to day operations – especially as they rollout their AI capabilities.

wa first two steps

You Can Try it Yourself For Free

Now of course I can tell you all about how Wealthy Affiliate works (because it does) until I am blue in the face. But every other program out there – including the shams and scams – will tell you the same thing!

So how about you just try it for free yourself. The Wealthy Affiliate Starter membership is free to join and gives you access to everything you need to get started – all without the need to spend a cent!

With the starter membership, you get:

  • 1 Limited Business Hub
  • 1,500 AI Word Credits
  • Try the AI Author Platform (BETA)
  • 1 Practice Website
  • Jaaxy Starter
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  • Core Niche Training (8 Classes)

And of course I will be there to help you every step of the way as well!

Look, in the interest of transparency, whilst Wealthy Affiliate does offer a free starter membership, this is designed to give you a look around, have a practice and see if it is worthwhile for you – which is a really great option.

However, as with all new businesses, you will need to make some investment so if you are serious about making money online , you will need to upgrade to a premium membership as this will give you access to all the tools you need in the one spot to succeed!

Afterall, every business needs tools to grow!

So How Much Does This Really Cost?

Wealthy Affiliate does not use upsells once you join – but as I mentioned in the video, to succeed here you will need to invest in a membership. There are a couple of options that provide access to all the tools, training and assistance that you could need – and a free domain as well.

Wealthy Affiliate offers a trio of membership tiers, as detailed on their pricing page.

You can opt for the Starter membership at no cost, the Premium membership for $49 per month or the Premium Plus+ membership for $99 per month. That’s the full extent of it – and you can absolutely build your website without having to spend another cent.

You won’t encounter any unexpected additional charges or covert fees and as a Premium member, you’re equipped with all the essentials to initiate, develop and expand a thriving online enterprise.

Those who opt for the Premium membership are provided with

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And for those of you who want to make a serious investment into your future, there are some yearly options as well below to give you peace of mind that you have a whole year ahead of you to get stuff done!

And Don’t Forget the Personal Coaching

Once you join, not only do you get plenty of assistance from me, but you also have access to expert coaching, support and mentorship from real industry experts.

I mean, you can have access to all of the top-tier affiliate marketing training in the world, but inevitably, questions arise, particularly during the initial stages.

With an exceptionally dynamic and engaged community that boasts over 2.7 million members, Wealthy Affiliate offers an environment where you, as a member, can fully immerse and leverage this network.

You’re never alone; you have the collective wisdom of an entire community at your fingertips, ready to assist at any moment.

Plus, there’s always-on, rapid-response website support to handle any technical queries you may encounter.

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Wealthy Affiliate Works: Real Results From Real People

As I have mentioned a number of times, Wealthy Affiliate has helped me make real money online though its training and tools.

I have made money each month as well as a sale for $17,000.

But again, those promoting other programs will tell you the same thing!

So let’s get away from me and see what others are saying:

To start with, Wealthy Affiliate has a 4.9 out of 5 Star TrustPilot rating, which is a remarkable accomplishment in any industry, let alone the online business industry.

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And here are some of those reviews:

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And this is what people are saying within Wealthy Affiliate as well:

home page - success at WA

So, Let’s Make a Decision!

Let’s be frank, you have read this far so why not go all in, click on the button below to get started on the way to your very online business.

And once you are in and have had a play around with the hub, look for the little envelope on the top right and there will be a message from me. It is of course automated so respond to let me know you are there and we can start this journey together.

(oh, and the profile is mine so you can find me that way as well)

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See you there


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