If you love the realm of sports but have a knack for writing, there's no better way to pursue your passion while making money than by starting a sports blog.
Yes, you can actually earn from a sports blog! Not only is blogging a lucrative career on its own, but combined with the sports industry it can be powerful. That's possible because the sports industry reached a booming $500 billion estimated value in 2020. So keep your doubts at bay – you certainly don't have to be a renowned sports news reporter or even the team's star linebacker to make money from and be a part of the sports industry.
Sports blogging is profitable because people are eager to follow their favorite sports blog online. Should you make the effort to compile the best information and deliver it in a punchy way, you will see your hard work pay off. There are plenty of ways to earn from sports blogging – affiliate marketing, display ads, and sponsorships – to name a few. Along the way, if you get big enough, you could even land a few free game tickets or get invited to industry events. How cool would that be?
The world of sports blogging is so large that there are many opportunities to get involved and share your enjoyment for sports. Whether it's football, basketball, baseball, ice hockey, gymnastics – there are thousands of fans wanting to learn more about it and join an online community. A sports blog can be bullseye-specific, sharing only the latest sports news from each game or covering the best tactics to win at badminton. Since sports blogs cover such a huge range of topics, it's important “to go long” – aka go niche!
Keep reading to learn more about choosing a niche below as I share my tips and advice on how to start a sports blog and profit from your passion.
Table of Contents
How To Start A Profitable Sports Blog Business
Pick A Brand & Domain Name For Your Blog
Like any good sports team, the name of your brand and blog needs to stand on its own and be worthy of rooting for. Okay, it's not that big of a deal what you choose as your domain name, but it does have an impact on your audience and your SEO rankings in Google.
Pick something short and relevant to the type of content you plan to share on your sports blog. Your target brand and domain name should ideally be something that aligns with your goals for your sports website. Take some time to choose, but don't get caught up on this step. Here are a few sports blog name ideas to help you get out of the gate. That said, avoid keyword stuffing and choosing a name that will be impossible to rank among competitor sports websites.
For example, the domain FootballSportsBlog.com is a bad choice because it's generic, lacks identity, and is likely already taken by a huge competitor. SportingMadams.com would be a better domain and brand name for a sports blog because it is relative and original with a reference to women's sports.
You could go even more specific if you pick a niche that focuses on one sport, one league, one team, and so on. So instead of writing all about sports you could go deeper and write about sports > lacrosse > women's lacrosse > local/national teams > athletes. You could even start a sports blog reviewing only women's lacrosse equipment and gear. By picking a niche, you cater to a targeted audience which will in turn boost your rankings while turning a profit.
If you write to appeal to the masses, you will have a difficult time seeing the fruits of your labor. Instead of “Go big or go home”, in blogging it's more like “Go niche or go home”.
One example of a high-quality sports affiliate website with good branding is SportsFeelGoodStories.com. As you could guess, this blog features only the feel-good stories including honorable sportsmanship, good deeds, hall of fame, and more. There's also the option to not go domain-specific, but just simply get creative. BellyUpSports.com is a good example of this. Three friends teamed up to write about their passion for sports – all categories – and the feedback they received was that they'd go “belly up” so they decided to turn the criticism into their brand name and said, “Game on.”
Build The Blog
Once you have a game plan in mind for your domain and brand, you can then begin to build your sports blog. Typically, this step shouldn't take very long so you could have it up and working within a few days.
- CMS (website builder)
Your domain is going to be the first building block for your sports blog. Without it, you can't get your content indexed in Google or other search engines which will allow it to rank. Your URL will be what displays at the top of search results (i.e., mysportsblog.com) which is what users will click on to land on your sports site.
The next step in building a blog is choosing a hosting provider. The host is who will securely store your website on their servers. There are two hosting services I'd recommend considering – Bluehost and Kinsta.
Bluehost powers millions of websites at a low monthly price ($3-9/month). They are able to do so because they host websites on public shared servers, which typically slows down connection and site speeds. Then there's Kinsta, which boasts managed hosting plans at a higher monthly price ($30/month and up) but not without a whole range of benefits like faster speeds and better connectivity and security.
Let's put it this way: If Bluehost and Kinsta went head to head in a match in terms of security and speed – Kinsta would probably come out on top with a higher score.
The third step of building a sports blog is choosing a website builder like WordPress, Wix, Weebly, etc. However, if you want to seriously pursue sports blogging and earn money from it, then the clear winner of all the CMS' will be a self-hosted WordPress.org sports blog. Check out my video below for a detailed explanation covering the three main reasons why WordPress.org is the best website builder for starting an affiliate blog.
How To Grow Your Sports Blog
Growing a sports blog on your own is fairly challenging. Unlike a sports team, you're a solo player trying to do it all the best way you can. I have been growing and scaling blogs for over ten years, which is why I advise you to build your blog with these steps in mind.
Get Free Traffic From Google
Without SEO, it'll be nearly impossible to get your sports blog to rank. That's why you should optimize your growth opportunities by investing your time (and potentially money) into keyword research. There are many free keyword research tools to play around with at first. But if you want to mine for golden keywords, paid plans will offer more insight and terms.
Once you have keyword research down pat, you can begin shooting out content. Writing and publishing articles consistently on your blog is key for growth. Like practicing outside of ball games is essential for athletes to improve their skills – writing and publishing content is what will sharpen your blogging skills and make your sports blog reach new heights.
Networking & Social
The other component of growing a sports blog is getting involved in the community at large. That means investing some time to join social media handles to grow a presence online. Social media is a powerful tool to help build your blog. Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, LinkedIn – these are all opportunities to connect with your fan base and target audience.
Twitter is especially impactful for sports blogs because you can fire out mini updates and content related to sports. You could even live tweet during a game to keep fans updated. Not to mention, Twitter is the best platform to use to connect with leaders in the industry – even athletes are active on Twitter and are often willing to tweet back or engage with fans.
By doing so, not only will you stand out as a resource for sports news and updates, you will attract new audiences to join the ranks in your community. This opens up even more opportunities for backlinks to your blog (which signals to Google that your sports blog is worth reading) which in turn will make your sports blog all the more optimized to earn money.
How To Make Money From Your Sports Blog
Unless you're just a true fanatic about sports, one of your end goals is probably to monetize your sports blog at some point. To do this will take time and lots of trial-and-error. And like any good game, there will be both highs and lows. But remember, it's about getting back up each time you fall. So how do you make money with a sports blog? There are three main ways to earn money from an affiliate website.
Affiliate marketing is the golden ticket when it comes to scaling earnings on your website. With affiliate marketing, you essentially earn commissions each time a user makes a purchase through any of your affiliate links. To include such links on your sports blog, you'll need to join and use sports affiliate programs. These programs allow you to earn a few bucks per every referral purchase from your website.
Affiliate marketing works best when you have review articles on your blog because users who land on these pages have what's called “buyer's intent.” So if you write an article about the best football helmets for youth, you could make money each time someone clicks out and purchases through your links. That's the basis of affiliate marketing. It doesn't sound like much, but when you add 50,000 users to your site each month, you'll see those links really start to rack up change.
Another way to bank from the traffic on your blog is to join a management ad service. Basically, put ads on your sports blog. The industry is used to seeing ads all the time – so don't worry too much about aesthetics unless you are purposefully wanting to boost affiliate link commissions over display ad earnings.
What's great about display ads is that it's mostly passive income. So you can earn form your sports blog while evening watching your favorite game. This passive income system is exactly how I am able to enjoy “one more cup of coffee” in the mornings without feeling guilty about it. If you're curious to learn more, my Mediavine income report reveals exactly how much display ads earn me each month.
Another way that bloggers make money is through sponsored partnerships. With a sports blog, this might be tricky. It's certainly the less reliable source of income as there are fewer resources to help you navigate the waters.
Nonetheless, landing a few sponsored gigs every once in a while can seriously boost your sports blog authority and earnings. If you have the numbers, you could sell ad space on your site to sports teams, leagues, and businesses selling sports-products. Some brands might even contact you to write a detailed review of their latest gizmo or gadget!
There isn't a limit to how much you can charge, but there aren't any guiding resources on where to start, either. Each sponsorship will need to be reconsidered on a case-by-case basis. As you grow, you can charge more for brands to reach your audience.
Why Sports Blogging Is An Evergreen Business Opportunity
Sports blogging is going to keep growing as the industry grows. New teams will rise and fall, new athletes will break records, and new businesses will pop up selling sports merchandise and services. There are many reasons why you should start a sports blog right now and it's because there's an opportunity.
Sports have been around for millennia and they're not disappearing anytime soon. That said, there are hundreds of creative ways to get involved in sports blogging. From covering major and minor leagues and sharing the latest news, to strategizing about the best player techniques and moves, there are dozens of sub-topics to play around with. So what are you waiting for? Get your hands dirty and start your sports blog today. Hut, hut, hike!
It's Time To Take Action!
You've read this far. What's holding you back?
Earning consistent income from a blog is not some kind of crazy, pie in the sky dream anymore. Millions of people start and run their entire business from a laptop.
The secret is out. The trail has been blazed. Just follow the steps and make it happen.
Do you want it bad enough to make it a reality? Stop reading and start doing. Here's how to build a blog and make money, even if you have no previous experience.