Laptop displaying logo of WordPress and dollar sign, concept on how to make money with WordPress

When they developed WordPress, Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little aimed to make blogging easier. The first version came with templates, an easy-to-use admin interface and other features designed to help complete newbies launch their blogs. A year later, Mullenweg and Little introduced the ability to use WordPress plugins to maximize functionality.

Over time, WordPress transformed from a simple blogging platform into one of the world’s top content management systems.  Today, WordPress powers more than 40% of all websites, making it one of the most valuable tools for website development.

Themes, templates, plugins and other features make it easy to start your own WordPress website or set up your own online store, making the CMS ideal for all types of monetization. You can even set up affiliate review sites, sell digital products, make money with Google AdSense or flip websites for profit. Discover how to make money with WordPress even if you don’t have a technical background.

Monetizing a WordPress Blog or Website

Suppose you’re looking for a new way to make money. In that case, a WordPress site is all you need to succeed with affiliate marketing, profit from display advertising or generate revenue from sponsored posts. Here are three ways to monetize a WordPress website, even if you have no experience as a WordPress developer or web designer.

1. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a revenue-sharing model that makes it easy to profit from your online assets. Instead of developing your own products and services, you promote other brands, so there’s no need to invent something new or try to develop the perfect product idea. Affiliate marketing is also a low-risk way to make money, as you don’t have to invest in product development or pay employees.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Find a brand you want to promote.
  2. Sign up for the brand’s affiliate program.
  3. Once approved, create a WordPress website to promote the selected product or service.
  4. Get paid every time someone clicks your affiliate link and makes a purchase. Unique affiliate links have embedded tracking codes, making it easy for brands to calculate how much they owe each promoter.

You can even make money without selling any products. For example, encourage people who visit your WordPress website to sign up for top-paying affiliate programs. Explain the benefits of signing up for each one to increase your earnings.

The WP SitePlan affiliate program offers a 10% commission for every referral, making it ideal for anyone who owns a small business, works as a freelancer or operates a digital agency. If you work with any of these groups, maximize your revenue by encouraging WordPress users to sign up.


WordPress Website Maintenance Checklist

To get the most out of your WP website, you’ll need to conduct daily, weekly and monthly tasks. Download our comprehensive checklist to learn to learn exactly how to maintain your own WordPress website!

WordPress Websites maintenance checklist image.

2. Display Advertising

Display advertisements combine text, images and links to draw attention to a company’s products and services. If you create websites, you can generate additional revenue by integrating display ads into each one. Google AdSense is the best example of a display advertising program, but there are other options, such as Yahoo Advertising and Microsoft Ads.

Follow these tips to maximize your earnings from online ad networks:

  • Research your competitors. Pay close attention to where they have display ads on each page.
  • Focus on the customer experience. Display advertising is one of the best ways to make money with a WordPress website, but you must prioritize your customers’ needs. Don’t trick customers into clicking on ads or place ads where they might obscure helpful content.
  • Make decisions based on user behavior. If users spend most of their time in the middle of a page, putting all your ads in the header or the footer doesn’t make sense. Instead, place ads where users are most likely to see and interact with them.
  • Make data-driven decisions. The major ad networks give you access to detailed analytics, allowing you to identify your top-performing pages and better determine user intent. Use that data to make decisions regarding ad placement.

3. Sponsored Posts

If you’re already making money online, sponsored posts are a great way to increase your revenue. A sponsored post highlights a specific product, service or brand. For example, someone with a food blog might monetize WordPress by doing a sponsored post for Campbell’s.

Earnings from sponsored posts depend on several factors, including traffic and the content’s alignment with your audience. They could be as few dollars or more than $1,000 per post.

It’s critical to consider the user experience. Making money is essential, but you shouldn’t do it at the expense of loyal audience members, so look for sponsors with value to offer your readers.

For example, if you have a blog dedicated to kitchen gadgets, a post about shoes will likely come out of left field. However, readers might appreciate an in-depth review of an air fryer or tips for using a slow cooker to save money on meal prep.

Once you secure a sponsor, ensure your exclusive content meets their criteria. You may have to mention the product a certain number of times or show the product from several angles. It’s also critical to disclose your relationship with the sponsor.

Selling Products and Services

WordPress is highly flexible, so it’s ideal for running an e-commerce business, promoting your services or selling digital downloads.

1. E-Commerce With WordPress

You could build an e-commerce store from scratch, but why do that when you could use WooCommerce? The WordPress e-commerce plugin allows you to get your site up and running in just a few simple steps:

  1. Install the plugin.
  2. Add details for your e-commerce store.
  3. Choose your industry.
  4. Select the products you want to sell.
  5. Choose a theme.
  6. Configure your payment and tax settings.
  7. Add other marketing tools, such as Google Listings & Ads or Mailchimp, for email marketing.
  8. Upload your logo and choose other personalization options.

Once you have an e-commerce site, selling digital and physical products is possible. Maximize your earnings by following best practices for product selection and marketing. It’s easier to earn money if you offer high-quality products to a carefully selected target audience.

You also need a WordPress website that loads quickly and makes it easy for users to find what they need. For example, page speed optimization can help you avoid losing customers due to slow load times.


Shopping cart on laptop keyboard with boxes, symbolizing WordPress eCommerce profits


2. Digital Products

A digital product is an intangible item delivered via the Internet. With an attractive WordPress site and some premium plugins, you can sell the following items:

  • E-books
  • Digital courses
  • Software
  • Audio files
  • Video files
  • Fonts
  • Spreadsheets
  • Templates
  • Vector graphics
  • Games
  • Mobile apps

It’s easier to earn money if you have tools for graphic design, email marketing and file management. You’ll also need some way to collect payments, calculate the correct amount of sales tax and ensure customers retain access to their purchases.

3. Service Offerings

Making money is even easier if you provide a service, as you don’t need to worry about sourcing products or managing inventory. Attorneys, tax preparers, accountants, and other professionals use WordPress to connect with potential clients and promote their services to a wider audience.

You don’t have to be a professional service provider to take advantage of WordPress monetization. Here are just a few ways to make money online:

  • Copywriting
  • Graphic design
  • Public relations
  • Social media marketing
  • Editing
  • Sound mixing
  • Translation
  • Software development
  • Auction listing services

WordPress Website Maintenance Checklist

To get the most out of your WP website, you’ll need to conduct daily, weekly and monthly tasks. Download our comprehensive checklist to learn to learn exactly how to maintain your own WordPress website!

WordPress Websites maintenance checklist image.

Membership Sites and Premium Content

Once you install WordPress, you can restrict access to some of your content, creating even more opportunities to earn money. You don’t need to set up an online store or experiment with different advertising programs. All you need to do is offer exclusive content.

1. Building Membership Sites

If you have a membership website, people pay a fee to access articles, webinars, videos, courses and other digital materials. You can offer weekly, monthly or annual subscriptions or charge a flat fee for lifetime access to the content.

WordPress makes it extremely easy to create this type of asset. Instead of writing code from scratch, you can use plugins to get a site up and running within hours. MemberPress, WooCommerce Memberships, WP-Members and bbPress are some of the best plugins for monetizing WordPress with a membership site.

One of the best ways to make your membership successful is to focus on delivering value. Loyal members are likelier to buy new products when you release them and recommend your site to others. You could churn through new members month after month, but it’s better to prioritize customer retention.

2. Premium Content Access

You don’t need advanced technical skills if you monetize WordPress with premium content. Simply use a Premium Content block to restrict access to text, photos, videos, and more. You can use these blocks to create multiple membership tiers or deliver premium content to customers’ email inboxes.

Leveraging WordPress Development Skills

If you have experience with WordPress, you don’t need to sell products to earn money. You can create themes and plugins or offer WordPress consulting and maintenance services.

1. Themes and Plugins Development

As of 2022, WordPress had more than 60,000 plugins in its official library. Additionally, as of March 2024, there were nearly 12,000 free themes. That only includes some of the paid WordPress themes offered by developers.

WordPress users are always looking for new ways to customize their sites despite the number of available products. Enter developers who want to make money by monetizing WordPress. Once you create a theme or plugin, you can promote it in the following ways:

  • Create a dedicated website.
  • Ask tech journalists to review your products.
  • Post about your themes and plugins on social media.
  • Submit your work to online directories.
  • Email your subscribers to let them know about the new release.
  • Start an affiliate program.

2. Consulting and Maintenance Services

Offering WordPress consulting and maintenance services can take your revenue to the next level. To promote your expertise, attend industry conferences, participate in webinars and focus on growing your network. Every time you give a presentation, you can connect with people who may need your services.


Laptop with tools emerging from screen, concept for WordPress white label monetization


White Label WordPress Solutions

White labeling is the practice of rebranding another company’s product or service to make it appear as if you’re offering it. For example, you can take content written by someone else and market it as your own.

1. White Label WordPress Maintenance

With white-label WordPress maintenance, you can sell maintenance services without providing them yourself. WP SitePlan’s maintenance package includes core, theme, plugin updates, regular WordPress backups, performance management, and other services to help your customers keep their WordPress sites up and running.

2. White Label WordPress Hosting and Page Speed Optimization

WP SitePlan also offers white-label WordPress hosting and page speed optimization. Our hosting packages come with world-class security features, dedicated resources and a 99% uptime SLA promise, making it easy to delight your customers. Page speed optimization makes every WordPress site load quickly, preventing customers from losing business due to slow speeds.

3. White Label Website Designs

You can even offer white-label website design services, enabling you to generate additional revenue without hiring designers or doing the work yourself. Our parent agency, Lead to Conversion, has a USA-based design team with extensive WordPress expertise. They focus 100% of their efforts on designing WordPress sites that are both functional and visually appealing.

Building and Flipping WordPress Websites

If you prefer building websites to managing them long-term, flipping might be the best way to earn money. Flipping involves building or buying a website, adding value, and selling the site to someone else.

For example, you could create a site about the best shoes for people with plantar fasciitis. You could publish articles and buying guides, insert display advertisements, or create a directory of podiatrists specializing in plantar fasciitis treatment. Once the site has plenty of traffic, you could sell it to someone interested in maintaining it.

To increase a site’s value before selling it, implement these tips:

  • Build quality backlinks
  • Publish long-form content
  • Diversify your traffic sources
  • Add multiple revenue streams
  • Build a strong social media presence
  • Grow your email list

Make Money With WordPress and WP SitePlan

As you can see, WordPress offers almost limitless opportunities to grow your business. If you want to avoid selling products or offering your own services, partner with WP SitePlan. Call (855) 906-0204 to learn how to start making money with WordPress.


WordPress Website Maintenance Checklist

To get the most out of your WP website, you’ll need to conduct daily, weekly and monthly tasks. Download our comprehensive checklist to learn to learn exactly how to maintain your own WordPress website!

WordPress Websites maintenance checklist image.