There are many different ways you can make money from your blog, and one of my favorites is Text Link Ads (ref link).
The system is simple enough. You add your site to their service, and based on the popularity of your site, advertisers buy links and you get paid half of what Text Link Ads brings in.
The advantages of a system like Text Link Ads are three fold as you get a central website for advertisers to find such advertising opportunities, advertising on your site that isn’t intrusive, and a fairly high income from the ads, depending on numerous factors.
The central hub for advertisers to find advertising opportunities is why Text Link Ads takes a rather large cut of each sale. You could sell text links on your own blog, but an advertiser might never come to your site for such a thing, but they will check out Text Link Ads, if they are looking to buy text links.
Non-intrusive advertising will put those with ethics at ease. There are no pop-ups or other such annoyances with text links. They are just regular links. They sit quietly in whatever position you put them in, and people can click on them or ignore them.
You can earn a lot from the advertising revenue attached the advertisements that Text Link Ads sell, especially if your site is very popular. For a Google Page Rank 4 blog with a higher than one million Alexa ranking can easily earn ten dollars per link per month, and with the ability to have up to eight links, that could convert to eighty dollars you weren’t previously earning. Sites with higher Google Page Ranks and lower (better) Alexa ranks of course make more money per link. Some blogs listed currently make upwards of three hundred dollars per link, though that is quite rare. The average seems to be around the twenty-five dollar mark, which becomes two hundred dollars if all eight of your advertising spots are sold.
No advertising system is without its disadvantages.
It won’t last forever because Google is a smart search engine company, and that is the largest disadvantages I see with Text Link Ads. With constant improvements to Google, the benefit to advertisers is going to continually be reduced, thus dropping the bottom out of such a system.
You might lose some of your Page Rank as it has been reported that Google penalizes sites that sell text links. This makes sense with the way Google works, as their Page Rank calculations are based on links and passing value through those links from one site to another, so really you are selling your Google Page Rank, and shouldn’t be surprised if your Page Rank goes down.
You may never sell a link. This is in part due to the huge user base on Text Link Ads, meaning much more competition. You have to stand out compared to other blogs in your niche, or advertisers will buy text links on their site, and not yours.
Is it for you?
Text Link Ads has to be one of the easiest advertising systems I have ever used. I picked where I wanted the links, and other than that, I didn’t have to worry about trying other positions, finding ways to maximize exposure, or other optimizations. The income generated off the links greatly outperformed AdSense on pretty much all of the sites I have tried it on. A word of warning though. If you want to use this system, keep yourself informed on what Google is doing in regards to text links, as it could greatly effect your site, and no amount of money is worth being knocked back down to a Page Rank of zero.