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 Paid membership definitely is a way to make money from forums but also implementing Google ad words or partnering up with an affiliate program like Go Daddy could make some money on a forum as well. If you pick the right topic and the right company to go along with that topic, eventually as the forum grows a company might approach you to advertise directly on your forum. Say if you have a Panasonic TV forum if it grows big enough maybe Panasonic might approach you to advertise.

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I'm a niche affiliate content marketer and as with any website or forum advertising should be fairly limited, not intrusive, avoid popup ads and in the end you must have considerable traffic and forum engagement.

 

Your bounce rate should be below 10, people should spend time on the site/forum and your chances increase. Also, the ads themselves must be something you would want to click on. I've tried hundreds over the years and ones that match the content work best because people arrive at the site/forum for a specific reason - they're looking for something, usually information so ads that are close to the site content work best.

 

Example: you have a poltical blog with a forum that is well traveled, has a fairly low bounce rate (<10) and engagement is heavy. A couple of ads somewhat related to news/politics/current events work best but some people are attracted to phones, tablets and other very popular products. Those types of ads have higher clickthrough rates.

 

I have a PR 7 political blog and my Adsense ads do best because they match up well with content. If I write about the auto industry I'll get car ads and they seem to be appealing as they've generated income. I have a fly fishing site and car ads appear there also and do well. Go figure. Some ads just look more appealing and generate a click.

 

Without the traffic and engagement no ad will have a good clickthrough rate. Build it and then build it out and out over the long-run with good white hat SEO practices and the results will be positive.

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  • 5 months later...

I think it is possible to make money from forums just depending on your activities. Like postloop offers such ways of earning from your posts and other companies. You can also post your ebook among other products on forums and see if they get customers. 

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  • 5 months later...

Making money from anything online be it blogs, forums or whatever comes down to the amount of traffic the site gets. Ads for forums don't generate lots of revenue because most of the time it's the same users who visit the forum. That means once they view an ad, the likelihood of them repeating the exercise is very low.

 

I think affiliate programs stand a better chance to make good cash for a forum if the products being promoted appeal to those whom the forum targets.

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I think your going to be severely disappointed if your goal is to make money with a forum. 99% of the people out there with a forum do not make a dime, including myself. And 98% of the people that do make money could make more money if they got a job at Mcdonalds.The days of throwing up a website and making money are long gone. If your going to make a forum, make it because you are passionate about it. And if you do make money it will be the icing on the cake!

 

Greg

Edited by Soulwatcher
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Is it appropriate in this forum to use your Google Adsense address in your signature? I heard that some forums let you do this but I am not sure about this one. I do not have a Google Adsense account yet so I am trying to get some info from wherever.

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I don't have a problem with it, but not sure you would get many clicks. 

 

You'll also want to check and see if it violates adsense's TOS as they are very strict.

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I don't have a problem with it, but not sure you would get many clicks. 

 

You'll also want to check and see if it violates adsense's TOS as they are very strict.

Okay thank you so much Nathan on the info for using Adsense in your signature. I am going to check back in the TOS to make sure it is appropriate.  

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  • 3 years later...
On 1/8/2013 at 1:32 AM, KMRock said:

I have always thought and seen a lot of debate and conjecture about this issue, and as such, decided I would voice my thoughts about how to make money from forums.

 

What are your opinions on how you make money from your forums?

 

What a nice topic to voice out cause actually one of the reasons Why I am here also is that I would like to earn some extra income using some forums. I am a newbie and I am not earning even a single cents in forums but reading some of the replies here make me motivated that Yes as long as you have the idea for your forums and if your forums is well important and informative to the viewer you can earn from it and I am looking forward for that day! 

Thank you 

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 From all the forums that i have been in. The main source of income for them is mostly through paid membership. Additional income might come from adsense. They could also link their forums their affiliate links for additional income. 

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I think forums can make you good money, if you know how to use them. When you have a forum that has high traffic, you rank very well on search engines.As pointed out ad sense would work here, but I also think you can use your forum for affiliate marketing especially if you have high traffic.You may have the problem of conversion. This can be solved by making sure your forum attracts  quality traffic. It has to be a forum where people get help and valuable information. Out here there some amazing forums that are a rich resource for information and have been around for quite a while. I'll bet they make good money.

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One thing that worked well for me on a past website was integrating the forum navigation with the website navigation, and then having a lot of content for people to consume. I was able to build a community around the content, which drove a large percentage of repeat traffic.

I then monetized the website with Google AdSense. I did make some money from showing ads in the forums, but the most profitable (revenue per page view) was in the content section. So, in my case, the forum became a traffic driver, that helped create traffic for more profitable parts of the website.

The key to this working is integrated navigation, where it is easy to jump between the forums and the rest of the website.

Edited by WisTex
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One way of earning from your forum is link it with Google Adsense. Ads will be visible in your forum and will pay a corresponding amount. Another way is to sell a service or product on your forum, just like what SEO Clerks by Ionicware is doing. If there's a reward system for the members of your forum, you can also consider requiring a membership fee. But, I think the most profitable part is having affiliates that can boost your forum traffic and have a significant sales.

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Forums are one of the best methods to make money, Adsense pays well if you are accepted and you have a high traffic your earnings may rise fast. Still, there must be a lot of work invested in the creation and maintaining a good forum.

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5 minutes ago, wallet said:

Forums are one of the best methods to make money, Adsense pays well if you are accepted and you have a high traffic your earnings may rise fast. Still, there must be a lot of work invested in the creation and maintaining a good forum.

Really?  I never had much luck with adsense on forums, just doesn't seem targeted enough. 

I've thought about using Amazon for products related to the niche though...

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The revenue you have from AdSense on a forum highly depends on the forum and site layout. For one site that I ran (with forum and content sections integrated, one theme for the entire website), the ads in the sidebars and the banner in the header worked out well. But since the forums were integrated with the content website, convenient navigation to related content was in the sidebars, so it drew eyeballs to the ads in the sidebars, hence more revenue. Most forum layouts are not very conducive to ad revenue.

Edited by WisTex
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