Traffic is the #1 thing you need to make a blog worth doing. But how much blog traffic do you really need and what is considered a “good level” of blog traffic? Let’s find out…
Starting something new, like a blog, is often really exciting. But once you’re a month or two into the process and you have no traffic, your enthusiasm can start to wane.
But it shouldn’t. This is why so many blogs – around 98% – fail within their first year. The people behind them just give up too quickly. They forget that growing a blog naturally, without buying backlinks and hiring writing staff, takes time.
How long? I’d say a good 12-24 months before you’ll see anything resembling meaningful traffic levels. But this is fine. It is all part of the process. Good things come to those who wait (and know how to do proper keyword research).
Google Doesn’t Like New Sites
People talk about the Google sandbox like it is a real thing. It might be. I have no idea how Google runs its search engine – nobody does. But one thing I do know is that Google doesn’t like or care for new sites. You have to pay your dues before you’ll even get a sniff from Google.
And how does one pay their dues? You write good, well-researched content that is A) useful, B) easy to read, C) original, and D) serves a purpose. This is why knowing your niche and understanding how to do keyword research is so important – the two things go hand and hand and are directly related to the success of your blog.
If you do points A to D well, and your keyword research is on point, there’s no reason why, after 12 to 18 months of diligent work, you couldn’t be getting anywhere from 10,000 to 20,000 visitors a month to your blog. But this is all dependent on you knowing what you’re doing, understanding your niche, and putting the hours in.
I’m also assuming here that it will be YOU not a team of writers doing the vast majority of the work too. If that’s the case, 12 to 18 months is a good timeframe for getting from zero to 10,000 to 20,000 visitors a month. Does this apply to all new sites? Of course not; plenty of sites grow much faster. But most don’t.
How Much Traffic Is Considered Good?
The amount of traffic your blog generates and how it is monetized will depend entirely on your business model. If you’re just running a straight-up nice blog and are looking to run ads and do affiliate marketing, the more the merrier – there isn’t any upper limit on what’s good. The more traffic you have, the more money you make.
But, again, it all depends on your site’s business model. Are you running ads? Or are you just doing affiliate marketing? Perhaps you’re looking to sell a product or a course? Again, different sites will have different traffic goals and conversion metrics.
For instance, a blog that sells its own products could be more profitable than an affiliate blog that has 10X its traffic. How? Because the blog that sells its own physical product has better profit margins, it needs to sell less to make more money, than an affiliate blog where you’re just getting a percentage of every sale.
I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that most people reading this will be interested in running a blog that runs ads and does affiliate marketing. That’s what I do, for the most part, and it is where the vast majority of my experience resides. So let’s break down some traffic metrics for this kind of site and look at what you can expect.
Different Traffic Levels For Blogs (And What Happens When You Hit Them)
All blogs gain and grow their traffic at different rates but there are a few milestones you’ll hit along the way, and once you hit these milestones certain things start happening, doors start opening that were previously closed, and money becomes easier to generate.
- 0 – 1000 a month – No ad networks will touch you and your affiliate links won’t get enough clicks to make any money. This is the bottom of the barrell. But the good news is there’s only way to go – up!
- 1000 – 5000 a month – You’re still too small for ad networks, but your affiliate commissions might start picking up now. You’re on your way.
- 5000 – 10000 a month – Much the same as before. Expect slight increases in affiliate commissions. You might be making $100 to $500 a month now from commissions.
- 10000 – 20000 a month – You can now start thinking about running ads.
- 20000 – 50000 a month – You can now start running ads on your blog. At this level of traffic, Ezoic is your best bet.
- 50000 – 100000 a month – Welcome to the major leagues! Your blog is now probably bigger than 90% of the blogs on the internet. You’ll be making decent money from affiliate commissions and likely a decent wedge from advertings too.
- 100000 – 250000 a month – This is where things get fun. All the hardwork is paying off and you’re now making a decent amount of money a month. Don’t quit your day job yet, there’s still more work to be done.
- 250000 – 500000 a month – This is where you start to hit “life changing money”. If you’ve done everything correctly with your affiliate marketing, you could be making anywhere from $3K to $10K a month and around $5K to $10K from ads. Welcome to big school.
- 500000 – 1000000 a month – This is where you blog goes from hobbyist site to authority site. It is now time to use ALL that cash you’re making to hire some people to do what you’ve been doing these past few years. You can now start your next site and pay for it with your existing site. You have f***ing made it.
When You’ll Start To Make Decent Money With Your Blog
If you know what you’re doing, and you’ve chosen your niche well, there’s no reason why you cannot start making money right away using affiliate offers and PPC traffic. I don’t tend to do this, however, as I’ve never been much of a fan of ads or paying for them.
You can run affiliate marketing on your blog from day one. You do not need traffic to do this. Just add the links and wait for the traffic to come. With ads, things are different. Most ad networks like Media Vine and AdThrive won’t touch your blog until you’re doing 100,000 visitors a month.
If your blog gets fewer than 1000 people on it a month, you won’t make much money – ads aren’t worth it and the clicks on your affiliate offers will be too low to make any meaningful money. Unless, of course, you’re promoting super high-ticket items, although I don’t recommend this.
How Much Traffic Do I Need To Run Ads On My Blog?
This leaves you with one of two options: Ezoic; this ad network will generally let most sites on with 10,000 visitors a month; or, Google Ads which you can install and run from the get-go, although I really wouldn’t bother – you’ll be making next to nothing with it on low traffic.
My advice would be to forget about ads until you’re doing at least 30K visitors a month. If your traffic is lower than that ads just aren’t worth it – you’ll only be making $200 – $300 a month TOPS off 10,000 to 20,000 visitors a month, so it just isn’t worth it. Not when ads slow down your site and make it look like dogshite.
At this point, between 1K and 30K a month visitors, just focus on building out your content, growing your site as fast as possible. It does get easier. In fact, I always find it much harder to get a site from 1K to 10K than from 20K to 50K. There is a certain snowball effect that starts to kick in once you have some momentum with links coming in and Google taking more notice of your blog.
Consistently is key when starting a new site. Commit to doing three or four articles a week, more is better though. And forget about making any money until your traffic is up around 50,000 visitors a month. And even then, it might not be enough to quit your job. In order to make the big bucks – upwards of $10K a month – you’ll need over 500,000 visitors a month.
But do not be put off by these numbers, just do the work, build up your asset. The more hours you put in, the more money you’ll make in the long run. If you can get to 100,000, that is a big step forwards and at this point, you should be making some pretty decent money. Once you get here, now’s the time to think about bringing on additional content writers, and get things really moving.
RichardI run multiple blogs and e-commerce stores for a living. I've been doing this since 2014 in a range of niches from tech to music gear and vaping products. This blog is where I share all my wins and losses, so other people don't have to make the same mistakes I did
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