8 Ways to Lose Money Online With Pride

8 ways to loose money with pride

Regular readers will know that Skelliewag runs no ads or affiliate links. I’ve never made a cent of direct income from this site, but I have lost money as a direct result of it. The money I lose each month is a modest double-digit sum: something I have no regrets or anxieties about.

There are countless blogs and websites devoted to making money online, yet it seems strange to me that there are no sites devoted to doing the opposite: losing money online, and doing it proudly.

In this post, I want to outline 8 ways you can begin to see that losing money online isn’t all bad. In fact, it might not be given the credit it deserves.

Best 8 ways

Treat your blog or website as a hobby. Perfectly normal people pay hundreds of dollars a year to take dancing lessons, go sailing, or learn to cook. For most of us, blogging/running a website is just as rewarding as any of these tasks. Those people taking sailing lessons probably aren’t expecting to make money off it: their rewards come from the act itself.

Hosting might cost you $100 a year. A domain name maybe $10. That’s not so much to pay for an enjoyable hobby.

Appreciate an ad-free space. Most corners of the web seem to be ad-supported these days. You can’t enjoy content without someone trying to sell you something. Now, I recognize that these ads can be helpful, but most of the time they aren’t. I’m often more than willing to put up with ads when I like the content (particularly if I understand why the blogger/webmaster needs to advertise), but there is something very refreshing about an ad-free space — both for readers, and for you.

View your losses as overhead, contributing towards future earnings. Most blogs don’t start earning worthwhile money until they have a large, established readership. In some cases, creating an ad-free website or blog can help you get to this stage quicker. You can then start monetizing only when it’s worth it.

Give your earnings away. If you’re like me, you probably feel a little bit guilty for not giving (or not giving enough) to the less fortunate. Deciding that you will give your blog or website earnings away can be a good way to assuage this guilt by doing something good. It’s easier than giving away the money you already have, because your direct online income is a bonus on top of that. An entrepreneur in the Third World will get much more use from your $5 AdSense earnings than you will, after all.

Give your earnings to your kids. I know several parents who’ve expressed some worry about the time spent on blog or website-related tasks which might otherwise be spent with kids. Giving your earnings to your kids, either as pocket money or in addition to it, can be a good way to get them involved in your blogging and make it fun for both of you.

View your blog or website as building the worth of your personal brand. A web designer with a big online following is more likely to be hired than a similar web designer without one. I wouldn’t hesitate to say that you can expect the equation to hold true across most professions. Creating a popular online presence will present you with a myriad of opportunities: many of them allowing you to make money through other means.

Hugh McLeod, who draws “cartoons on the back of business-cards” at gapingvoid, said recently: “One of the smartest moves I ever made was to figure out that making money indirectly off the cartoons was far easier than trying to make the money directly. If I could teach gapingvoid readers just one thing, that would be it.”

Concentrate on the other rewards you get. For me, there are plenty of things to love about blogging, and I’m not sure I’d give any of them up for money. Interacting with readers, having strangers sit down, read and enjoy your words, getting interesting emails, and making connections with very different people from different places in the world have all been rewards you couldn’t put a price on.

It makes honesty easier. If you’re not making money with your site, you can link to a book on Amazon, or any other product or service, without it being an affiliate link. Both you and your readers know that with every product or service you recommend or review, you’re doing so because you genuinely want to share it (or provide an honest opinion).

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I should end by saying that there is nothing wrong with making money online. However, this post is written for those of you who, like me, have chosen to (or are unable to) make a direct income off their site, and might appreciate a voicing of some of the reasons why.


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