I have been reading comments and advice from successful bloggers, including the ProBlogger book (see my post about the book here) and one thing that seems to come across is that one should spend time in building one's blog's content and traffic before starting to try and make money. I haven't been blogging very long, but I think I'm beginning to see the sense in what they're saying.
I see so many blogs that are new or fairly new and they are trying to incorporate as many methods of making money on their blog as they can. I did the same when I started, because I thought that's what you did. But I didn't know anything about blogging and I've had to learn through experience - by actually doing it.
Knowing what I know now, if I started again, I would focus on creating a blog or blogs that had good content and gradually build up the traffic. Good content attracts readers and keeps them and a lot of posts help with your Search Engine Optimisation, providing a lot of content for the search engines to find. I think I would only have AdSense to start with.
The thing with trying different affiliate programmes is that you need the traffic coming to your blog(s) in order to generate income. If they're not generating income, you don't know if it's because it's a programme that isn't an income generator - for you, at least - or if it's just because you haven't got enough traffic yet. So you don't want to dump it in case it does generate income once you do have good traffic!
However, if you spend time concentrating on building up a good and interesting blog, and get traffic and subscriptions, then you can start to try out affiliate schemes and other income generators and you'll be able to tell whether they are worthwhile or not. In fact, you'll probably have been able to see them in operation in the blogging world before you even have to try them out yourself.
The difficulty is that if you start blogging with the idea that you want to make money from it - however much - then it's very hard to wait for a year or more while you're building your blog, not to have any means of making money from it, save perhaps AdSense, until you have good traffic. But in all honesty, if I started again today, that's what I would do. I feel I need to think of the long term. Blogging is not the key to instant riches, but in the long term it can provide a steady income, the scale of which depends on our effort and perseverance plus the ability to learn.
I would appreciate comments on this based on your own experience.