Is it really possible to earn a full time living from Adsense? While the answer is absolutely “yes”, I would like to explain why this is a bad strategy and business plan. Google Adsense is a great tool that you can add to your arsenal, but there are three main issues with relying on Adsense for a full time income. For starters, unless you are extremely lucky, it will take you several years to achieve this goal. Secondly, putting all your eggs in one basket is never a good business move, especially with Google Adsense. And third, there may be far more profitable ways to earn a full time living online than just through Adsense alone. With that said, let’s get into this in a bit more detail.
What It Takes To Earn A Full Time Living With Adsense
In order to truly earn a full-time income with Adsense, we first need to determine what a “full time living” is for you. Just for the sake of this article, let’s take the average yearly income in the United States which is around $43,000 per year. To some of you, this may be way more than you need and for others, it will not support your current lifestyle from whatever full-time job you have. However, I think most of us would be very happy with over $40k from a “passive” income source (I’ll explain why I put “passive” in quotes a little bit later).
So, if we want to make $43,000 per year that is approximately $118 per day or $3,540 per month. How do you achieve this?
Well, first I’ll give the answer you don’t want to hear and then I will give a more direct answer. The answer you don’t want to hear is “it depends.”
…I know – worst answer ever. I hate hearing that.
The reason “it depends” is because every niche will earn a different amount from Adsense. If you get in on a super high paying niche like weight loss, you may need far fewer visitors to your website than one that talks about toothpicks. That’s because you earn a percentage of the revenue anytime an ad is clicked on. Since the prices of ads fluctuate wildly depending on the exact niche your site or blog is about, this plays a big role.
Another reason “it depends” is because with some niche topics, you’ll see a far higher click-through rate (CTR) which is just a fancy way of stating how many people click on your ads. If you have a website that targets kids, for example, you’ll likely see a higher click-through rate as kids generally don’t realize when they are even clicking on an ad. On the other hand, a site about affiliate marketing, such as this one, will experience a very low click-through rate because those researching affiliate marketing tend to know about Adsense and prefer not to be “conned” by clicking on an advertisement. And finally, it also depends on how many pages people browse on your site. If they only read one page and leave, you will be displaying far fewer ads in total than a site which people browse on average 5 or 10 pages per visit.
But now for the direct answer. If we take an average site in an average niche with an average click-through rate, you should realistically expect to be receiving around 10,000 visitors PER DAY before you will likely be earning enough to make a full time living with Adsense alone. Pretty insane, right? Right. I didn’t say you’d like the answer, but I don’t want to “wow” you with false expectations.
But don’t stop reading here. A bit further below I will show you some better alternatives.
Earning A Full Time Income With Google Adsense Isn’t As Passive As You Might Think
Google Adsense is technically passive income. When you create a new post on your blog and include Adsense ads, that blog has the potential to make you money not just once, but over and over again, even while you sleep or go on vacation. That page and the ads are there forever, or until you take it down. I have pages on many sites that earn me income every day and I haven’t touched them in years. So yes, Google Adsense is passive income in that regard.
However, those of you who have been making websites for a while know how difficult it is to obtain 10,000 visitors per day to your site. Most bloggers and website owners never see anything near that. In order for a website to consistently bring in 10,000 visitors per day it has to be something better than just a blog or website. It has to be amazing and it has to be a dominant site in a very popular and competitive niche which is updated constantly. If you start a website or blog today, it could take you 5 years working 40hrs per week to see that kind of traffic, and even then, you might never see it. Again, it all depends on your niche, but there’s no question obtaining 10,000 visitors per day is a huge undertaking. That makes Adsense a little less “passive” than most people think.
How To Properly Use Adsense To Diversify Your Online Income
Now, instead of focusing on using Google Adsense as a full time income source, what about an extra $5,000 or $10,000 per year? Now, this is much more obtainable, plus you aren’t putting all your eggs in one basket.
You see, Google is known for basically dropping Adsense publishers without notice. You get an email that says you violated a policy and that’s it. Your account is closed and it’s all over. As evil as you might think this is, they aren’t the only ones doing it. Companies with affiliate programs do it to affiliate marketers all the time, suppliers and drop shippers will stop creating certain products, advertising policies change… That’s just how it is on the web. So you always, always, always want to diversify as much as you can. Earning $10,000 might not seem like much on the surface, but you can easily make much more than this either through affiliate marketing or by selling your own products and services on your site. If you can have 4 different revenue streams making you $10,000 per year, isn’t that better than making $40,000 from just one source? Yes, it is. Diversification is key!
Ok, but how do you diversify your income source? I’m glad you asked!
Affiliate Marketing Is A Better Strategy Than Adsense For A Full Time Income
Seeing as though I run a site teaching people how to make money with affiliate marketing, I may be a bit biased here. I admit that. But let me tell you, my business is on par to make well over $200,000 this year and Google Adsense consists of about 10% of that. It’s just the cherry on top.
With affiliate marketing, you have much more leverage. If Google Adsense drops you, there are very few competitors you can go with to earn the same level of income. However, with affiliate marketing, most niche topics have dozens of affiliate programs you can use. Plus, on many affiliate products and services I promote, I receive 50% and even 75% RECURRING monthly commissions for any sale I make. Adsense is a drop in the bucket compared to what I make through affiliate marketing.
Sell Your Own Products And Services For The Best Chance To Earn A Full Time Income Online
I personally love affiliate marketing because once I make a sale, my job is done. I don’t have to supply any customer service, I don’t have to deal with employees, shipping, sales tax, returns, warehousing, payment processing systems, etc. I find that affiliate marketing provides the least amount of hassle for the highest return possible.
With that said, the people truly making a killing online are those who sell their own products or services. When you do that, you get full control over everything from pricing to how you obtain your site traffic to even having affiliates like me promoting your stuff and making sales for you. Done right, it can be unbelievably profitable in an extremely short period of time.
What can you sell? It could be anything from an e-book to professional consulting services to providing local services in your specific geographic area. If you’re going to take the time to create a blog, maybe it’s better to simply grow your own business instead of promoting Google or Amazon or someone else’s business. Making a 50 cents per click from Google Adsense is nothing compared to what you can earn selling your own stuff and you will need far fewer visitors to make a full time income from it.
Use All Three!
Of course, the ideal business plan would include a nice array of everything posted above. There is certainly nothing wrong with Google Adsense, especially when combined with affiliate marketing or selling your own products. The point of this article is to give a realistic expectation. Earning a full time income with Adsense is something that will take a long time. The fact is, most people do not have the time nor patience to spend years working on a website before it pays back enough for you to quit your day job. And you know what? I don’t have the patience, either. That’s why I focus more of my attention on affiliate marketing rather than trying to earn a full time income with Adsense. Affiliate marketing is WAY faster, WAY easier, and WAY more effective than relying on Adsense.
So, is it possible to make a full time income with Adsense? Absolutely. There are plenty of people that right now. However, I think a more diversified and targeted monetization plan is better suited for the vast majority of internet marketers out there.