The truth is, the vast majority of people who make an income blogging do so by being passionate about what they blog about. Are you passionate about what you blog about? You should be. Because your competitors are; every online niche -- ranging from biography to baseball -- has at least a handful of bloggers that actually love what they write about.
If you want to beat them to an audience, you are going to have to get ahead of the curve. Below are ten sure-fire ways you can do that.
1. Make sure your entire blog is search engine optimized. This means: using h1 headings, alt and title attributes, bountiful content, large amounts of internal links and meta description tags.
2. Promote your feed – it's your lifeline to potential returning visitors. Your visitors should have a way of easily accessing content to your site and, sometimes, they don't prefer to visit your URL. You should be using Google FeedBurner so that you can record feed stats, optimize with Google's ping service and monetize your feeds with AdSense.
3. Get external dofollow links to your blog. Don't point them all at the frontpage with the same anchor text. Make sure you get links from sites that are related – the mighty Google knows the difference.
4. Research different advertising options. Remember – AdSense is not always the answer. I have known long time bloggers who turned completely to services like ClickBank and Paydotcom (affiliate networks) and have increased their profits by ten fold.
5. Identify good ad placement spots on your blog. The eye often starts mid-left on the page, which makes it an ideal place for advertisements; but not all blogs are structured the same way. You may have design elements in your template that cause the eye to start in different places on the page. Experimenting with different ad placements is the only way to maximize their performance.
6. Feature an 'Advertise Here' page on your blog with traffic and demographic stats for potential advertisers. Some blogs get 90% of their income from private advertisers so you want to make it easy for them to contact you.
7. Never have blank banners on your blog. Run dummy ads if you don't have advertisers yet. Use the space to advertise that you are looking to sell ad space.
8. Take advantage of social networking mediums like Facebook and Twitter. No matter how little known your blog is, you should have a Facebook and Twitter page because some people prefer using these services to follow you.
9. Insert share buttons at the bottom of each of your blog posts. You never know when someone might submit something of yours, allowing your blog massive Stumbleupon or Digg traffic.
10. Frequently update your blog. You will never gain followers if you are a lazy, infrequent blogger. This is the single most important thing to practice if you are looking to make money blogging.
If you regularly practice the above methods, with determination (and maybe a little luck), you will be making a profit from your blog in no time. Stay driven, stay consistent and don't give up!