Making Money with Your Sailing Blog

Many of you have written about and have asked me about making money with your sailing blog. You asked whether it was possible (it is), and you asked whether we allow you to make money using your blog (we do). We allow Captain and Admiral level accounts to feature your own ads anywhere on your blog, enabling you to make money from it.

3 keys to making money from your sailing blog

There are three steps that you need to take to make money from your sailing blog:

  1. Write high quality, relevant content
  2. Promote your blog
  3. Monetize your sailing blog

So, this post is a start to helping you begin to make money and eventually earn a living from your sailing blog. I’ve written it in a list form with relevant links to some great content. Post a comment or email me if you have any questions.


1. Keep your content focused on your broad blog topic. If you tend to write about living aboard your boat, don’t suddenly write about politics. Your audience will abandon you if you are all over the place. Keep it consistent.

2. Don’t focus on making money. If you think about it, people want to build trust with you and they are there to read about your stories, opinions, or adventures on your sailing blog. If they are going to build that trust with you, they don’t want to feel like your always out to make a buck. Instead, focus on building a community and writing about topics that are relevant, focused, and that you care about.

3. Get a good blog theme. Good blog design is critical to engaging your visitors and to keep them coming back. Think about how much you like to visit ugly sites? You don’t  – nobody does. So why would your visitors want to keep coming back to your ugly site? They don’t. Pick a good, simple, easy to read theme for your blog.

4. Write product and service reviews. Have you had a good experience at a marina? A bad experience with an electronics manufacturer? Write about it! This is incredibly valuable to your fellow boaters. One of our bloggers does an excellent job at this (Marine Services Review). Writing about products and services you’ve used in the boating industry is a great way to make money blogging. Keep it objective or give your opinion where appropriate. Make sure you link to the products involved in your review and check affiliate marketing sites like Commission Junction for affiliate links to add to your blog. Note: Make sure that you follow FTC or relevant country disclosure laws.

5. Do a Top 10 List. For instance, Top 10 Gadgets for Sailors or Top 5 Navigation Suites for Trawlers. These types of posts tend to do really well and they are very easy to monetize with ads or affiliate links. They’re also very popular around the holidays when a reader might be interested in stocking up on boat toys for the holidays.


Many people write a blog post, publish it, and then say “where are all the people?” You need to put effort into promoting your blog posts. You have to do the work and you have to get your blog post out there. Do it every time!

1. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. This might be old news, but you still need to promote every post you make, especially posts about products or services. Make sure that you are posting your links to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and other social media sites.

2. StumbleUpon. StumbleUpon (SU) is a great site that will help you land some new traffic. Make sure you add your posts to SU.

3. Back links with good anchor text. You need to get others to link to your post. You don’t want just any link though, you want links with descriptive text about your posts. For instance, here is a link to a previous post that I wrote about tips and tricks to get started with your sailing blog. The anchor text tells search engines what your page is about. Reach out to your fellow bloggers and ask them to add a post linking to yours (and do the same for them).

4. Use Quora. Frankly, I’m new to Quora, a social question and answer website. However, its a great place to get back links from and to build a reputation. Make sure that you don’t just spam the site. Respond to posts with valuable information. There’s a ton of questions about sailing and living aboard so those might be topics to get started with.


1.  Google Adsense. This is standard. When most of us think of adding ads to our blogs to make money, we think of Google Adsense ads. I’ve used these. At some point, most of us have used these on our sailing blog. It’s a good starter ad. Just keep an eye on your stats. Track what pages are making money, which ones are not. Experiment with colors, locations, and ad sizes.

2. Alternatives to Adsense. Adsense doesn’t always work out on every page. Sometimes it can be great, and sometimes you’ll need to look at other networks to generate decent revenue from your ads. Check out other ad networks for your sailing blog like Adbrite, YPN, and others. Here’s a post with some details about these other ad networks.

3. Affiliate links. Unlike Adsense, affiliate links require action by your reader. They require more than a click. They require the user to make a purchase or do something like sign up for a mailing list. When they do, you make money. And often, you can make a lot of money. The largest hub of affiliate links is Commission Junction, who I mentioned above. A good strategy is to write a product or service review or comparison and insert the appropriate affiliate links into your post. Make sure you comply with FTC or your country’s disclosure laws regarding this type of advertising.

4. Sell a product or service. One of the most popular ways of making money from your blog isn’t by selling advertising space or using affiliate links at all. Many bloggers sell customized products, services, or advice. For instance, if you’re a live aboard sailing blogger you could offer important consulting services to those looking to start living aboard on topics such as provisioning, budgeting, and other issues that affect live aboards. What about writing a book or publishing a collection of your posts into a bound volume and selling it through your sail blog. Think about it.

5. Get paid to blog. If you are a good blogger, you can even get paid to blog. If you have a gift for generating social interaction on your blog or getting users to follow your every word, then your word is likely worth something. There are various services that will help you earn some money this way. I won’t link to them here, but a Google search will help you find them fairly quickly.

So if you’re interested in making money from your sailing blog, its time to join today and start earning a living as a paid sailing blogger. Register now!



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