I have never been a fan of glaring “pay-per-click” and online advertising on personal sites because I feel it takes the focus away from the somewhat personal nature of my blogs. But I do believe that you have every right to ask for donations to support your work, particularly if you put in a lot of effort into it and generate a good product. Your users get to determine if you are doing a good job and they can make a donation if they like.
Now, I used to find it a bit corny to explicitly put a button that said “Donate” on my page, because, all said and done, I really had no expectations when I started work on Suffusion. Moreover, the “Donate” button seemed to me to have undertones of begging. Eventually, though, a few people offered to “buy [me] a drink” and that is when I thought about finally biting the bullet and putting in a link. I eventually put in a “Buy me a coffee” button on Aquoid.
Why a coffee? I will be the first to admit that coffee only helps me to stay awake when ingested in extreme doses. For those who don’t know me well, I can get by with around 30 hours of sleep in a whole week and not show any side-effects, all without coffee. I can also get by with 80 hours of sleep a week – I am that weird, but that is a story for another day. The other options were a Pizza (unhealthy) and a Beer (I am a teetotaler). Though now that I think of it, I could have put in a picture of hot wings – something I love. Anyway, the coffee was merely symbolic and had no bearing on what I was really going to spend the contributions on (though I assure you it isn’t for nefarious activities 🙂 ).