Aside from Google AdSense, affiliate marketing, and direct ad sales, you can also earn money from your blog through paid reviews, in which you charge a certain fee in exchange of reviewing products or services.
With the emergence of blogging, brands now realize the importance of gaining online visibility. Many of them are buying direct ads, sponsoring freebies, and pay for bloggers to write product reviews.
Advertisers prefer paid reviews because they will stay on the web and continuously gain traction as long as the blog exists and the blogger will not delete the post. For bloggers, this is a profitable way to earn more revenue from their website.
However, not everyone is in favor of writing a product or service review in exchange for a fee.
Some bloggers feel that this practice goes against their integrity and credibility, while other bloggers find it acceptable as long as you clarify that the post is a sponsored content.
But before we discuss if paid reviews are good or bad for your blog, let’s explore why brands are willing to pay for reviews.
Why Brands Are In Favor of Paid Reviews?
Businesses, especially those with significant online traction, pay for reviews mainly because of three reasons:
Many brands who don’t have sizeable advertising budget need exposure for their new products or services.
The easiest and most affordable way to achieve this is to partner with a popular blog or website related to the brand’s niche.
For example, if a rising cosmetic brand needs to introduce a new line of lip gloss, the company can sponsor a product review in a beauty or fashion blog.
This strategy can create brand awareness, and the target market can start learning about the new product. This is more effective than buying a banner ad because the product is comprehensively discussed.
Huge surge traffic back to the brand’s website is another benefit that brands are looking for in sponsoring content. Attracting high traffic will give brands more opportunities to convert visitors into sales.
Hence, if you have a niche blog and you are directing highly targeted traffic from search engines, you can easily entice advertisers to sponsor reviews from you.
Backlinks are valuable in off-site SEO, especially if the links are coming from blogs with high domain authority. This is why many advertisers are looking for niche blogs for paid reviews that include backlinks. Blogs with high authority can provide valuable backlinks especially if the advertiser and the blog are on the same niche.
Why Accept Paid Reviews for Your Blog?
Many influential bloggers are now charging as high as $5,000 to review a product. On the other hand, there are also influential sites who are not accepting payments for their reviews.
Bloggers who are accepting paid reviews charge a certain fee because it requires time and efforts before you can really write high-quality reviews.
You need to thoroughly test the product, take excellent photos, edit those photos, write the review, and promote the post to your readers.
Once you sit down and examine how much time you need for your blog, you will soon realize how precious your time is.
Charging a certain fee for reviews can also eliminate time wasters and freeloaders, which can eat up a lot of your time and energy.
As your blog becomes popular, you will get regular requests for product reviews.
Unfortunately, many of these requests are from people who want to get value for nothing. It is best to avoid brands who are expecting bloggers to spend hours writing a product review and get nothing in return.
Full-time bloggers need to earn a living, and they earn cash through paid reviews. They simply can’t pay bills using free products or hotel stays.
Why NOT Accept Paid Reviews for Your Blog?
Meanwhile, some bloggers don’t like to charge for reviews because they want to preserve their credibility or they are really passionate about their niche.
Take note that people are naturally skeptical, so your readers may choose to unsubscribe to your blog if they discovered that you have received money to write a review, then wrote about how amazing it was to use the product.
There is also the issue of being honest about a product or a service. Of course, accepting payment to write a review will usually convince you to tone down on the negative aspects of the product right?
Persuading your subscribers that you are telling the truth when you really are can be easy.
But what if the product is really not that good?
Perhaps you should take a look at your main reason behind your blog.
Have you started the blog to make money?
Or are you genuinely passionate about the niche and you love to tell your subscribers about awesome and helpful products?
Many bloggers are accepting paid reviews but they also support startup brands who don’t have the same advertising budget as the big players.
Should You Accept Paid Reviews for Your Blog or Not?
Remember that a paid review is somehow similar to an affiliate marketing post. You write about a product or a service, then your readers may choose to visit the links if they find your review helpful.
However, you should first try the product or service before you write a review. This is why asking for a sample product or free trial of a service is crucial so you can write an objective insight.
It’s not necessarily bad to accept paid reviews, but ensure that you only review products or services that are within your niche and you have personally tried.
The decision whether to accept paid reviews is in your hands. After all, you are the best person to judge if you will charge a fee, and if yes how much based on the value of your blog and your influence to a niche market.
And don’t forget that there are still many strategies to earn revenue from your blog such as Google AdSense, sponsored posts, and banner ads to name a few.