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February 3rd, 2010, 02:13 AM #1Affiliate Marketing For Freaking Idiots!!!!
I wanted to start a thread for 2010 that TRIES to give newbies ( Especially what I like to call " Affiliates on Traing Wheels" a REAL Starting Point to begin their Quest into the endless riches that every affiliate marketer who has ever tried enjoys!
All of the answers are already here at ABW, but going through all of them and picking the best of the best just makes my brain hurt...
These are ONLY my opinions ( disclaimer ), but I've been around for a day or two and will share some tips that I believe are CRUCIAL to getting started....
One of the things that you don't hear much about here is how the "Super Affiliates " make their money......
And there are a ton of them on this board that are making REAL BANK!
When you talk Super Affiliate, you are normally talking about an individual or two in an organization that is a Pay Per Click PROFESSIONAL.....
Some folks REALLY know what they are doing.
Very few of them got there without losing a ton of bucks first...
Trial and Error....
My point is, that most new affiliates don't have the cash flow to play that game...
So .................. ????
Where do regular folks start?
You have a GREAT URL.....
Building content all of your waking hours...
You've become an SEO star...
And there are 18 people visiting your site everyday...
Kind of hard to make a living from 18 visitors.... or 1800 -
Press Releases ?
Organic Traffic.. ?
What do you guys and gals REALLY want to know ?????
If you ask the right question.....
I'll do my best to give you a " Well Thought Out and Intelligent Answer...."
February 3rd, 2010, 03:28 AM #2
I want to know how long it took to get your first commission (if you are ok with answering that) and how long you have been in affiliate marketing.
This information is particularly valuable to new affiliates i find starting out - because it is pretty clear that it is the hardest in the beginning...
February 3rd, 2010, 05:54 AM #3Originally Posted by andyparks16
I started out with a credit card and learned PPC,,,,,,
Added content as fast as I could.
Learned a little SEO and started to make a living....
Started making more than I was spending......
February 3rd, 2010, 10:34 AM #4
- Join Date
- January 18th, 2005
> "I want to know how long it took to get your first commission (if you are ok with answering that) and how long you have been in affiliate marketing." <
This could be very confusing and misleading for "newbies," if they rely on information from those of us who started in past years when profiting from "affiliate programs" was somewhat easier.
I started in the 1990s, and probably earned my first performance-based advertising payment within 3 months.
But at that time, most of my revenue was from CPM advertising, where advertisers paid me up front to have their ad appear on a specific page on my site for 3 months. By 1999, I was earning more than $10,000 per month in CPM advertising from a site with only about 100,000 visitors per month. After I sold that web site in 1999, most of my revenue (from other sites) was from PPC/CPC advertising on my sites; by 2001 or 2002, most of my advertising revenue came from "affiliate programs."
From 2000 through 2003, I earned meaningful advertising revenue (thousands of dollars per month of net profit) from a "mix" of my own web sites (with traffic drawn from SEO & PPC) and direct-to-merchant PPC (DTM-PPC) search advertising. I have spent many thousands of dollars on unsuccessful PPC campaigns (including both DTM-PPC as well as PPC used to attract traffic to my own web sites).
After 2004, most of my DTM-PPC campaigns failed to generate profits; my most successful DTM-PPC in 2006-2007 turned upside down in late 2007 when the merchant made major changes to its web-site design, causing the conversion rate to plummet.
That's an important lesson for "newbies" to understand: change is constant, and strategies and tactics that someone claims were profitable last year might not work this year.
It's also critically important for "newbies" to understand that in the past few years, many merchants (including Amazon) have added prohibitions on "direct-to-merchant PPC" activity, substantially limiting that already-difficult "opportunity."
It's also important for "newbies" to understand that there a wide range of strategies and tactics used in "affiliate marketing," including some tools with quite "immediate" results (e.g. PPC) and others which require many months of patience (e.g. SEO), before learning whether the effort was successful. I have had web sites that didn't earn any advertising revenue at all until 2-3 years after I launched the sites (but then influenced multiple transactions per month for a year or longer); I have had web sites that generated advertising revenue within 24 hours after launch.
Finally, "newbies" need to understand that there are many, many factors that determine success or failure -- and even the best experts don't fully understand all these factors. Occasionally, it can seem "easy" to generate profits from PPC or SEO, but over time, competition brings many new levels of complexity, and any particular effort can switch from "highly profitable" to "entirely unprofitable" overnight (literally).
February 3rd, 2010, 11:32 AM #5
- Join Date
- November 25th, 2005
Nice post Mark!
This subject is far too complex to clear up in a single thread.
Heck, some people have devoted entire forums to share this kind of information... wait a minute...
My contribution to the thread: newbies should search for and read the posts by a member named Donuts
February 3rd, 2010, 01:27 PM #6Originally Posted by andyparks16
February 3rd, 2010, 09:57 PM #7
February 4th, 2010, 05:28 PM #8
My advice is to build for the long-term. Build a good website on a good domain name. Be the best website in your niche. The best visitors are return visitors and people who were recommended to your site(s).
There are all sorts of tricks and games that can be played for short term profit (or loss), but they generally stop working just as you figure out how to make them profitable. Sometimes you need to do these things to keep your business afloat, but never lose track of your long term goal of building quality sites.
People who spent time playing the PPC game are finding they have built very little long-term value as the PPC game is now becoming more expensive and more difficult with the higher standards, slaps, and bannings that the search engines have been using to limit the type of sites that can advertise with them.[URL=http://www.investeverymonth.com]InvestEveryMonth.com[/URL] - Build Wealth
February 4th, 2010, 05:30 PM #9
My biggst piece of basic advice is to get a good analytics program (such as Google Analytics) on your site ASAP so you can see exactly where your visitors are coming from, what they are doing, and how long they spend on your site.
Watch these stats as you make changes. You will find that the smallest change (changing one word, adding a line break, changing fonts, colors, layout, pictures, etc...) can sometimes make the biggest difference.[URL=http://www.investeverymonth.com]InvestEveryMonth.com[/URL] - Build Wealth
February 4th, 2010, 05:46 PM #10Originally Posted by OICUAM2
February 4th, 2010, 05:52 PM #11
By the way Mike............
2000 - 2003 were some good times...
I was the National Sales Mgr. for DoItYourSelf.com ....
RFP's flying into my email box....
5 - 10 quotes a day....
Ad Agency's were paying top dollar for exposure...
Then in a matter of hours ....
February 8th, 2010, 08:37 PM #12
Originally Posted by vicjg
- Join Date
- February 6th, 2010
- miramar, florida
February 9th, 2010, 01:07 AM #13
As a newbie my question would be how much traffic would a website need to make 2k monthly income.
February 9th, 2010, 01:12 AM #14
Ok, I have a question.
Say someone has a few websites, and they all suck trafficwise (but are getting better), this someone spends lots of time writing *good* content, doing social media, keeping up to date with SEO and linkbuilding, and optimizing content but is still not earning anything.
This someone has a few bucks to invest into this endeavour. What would be the best way to invest this little stash--outsourcing content writing, setting up new sites, learning ppc, paid directory inclusions? All of the above or none of the above?
What would be the first thing you would do if you had a little cash to spare?
February 9th, 2010, 01:43 AM #15Originally Posted by lintlin
Make sure that you don't ask someone with a niche that is close to yours ( no one likes to share their secrets if it means it could create competition ) and make sure you have a no compete signed in one form or another.....
Get a mentor with a proven track record that will teach you the ins and outs of generating SALES ( not just click thrus or leads ) on the net...
$500 would not be an insult...
$1000 would get you some un-divided attention.
I've gone to bed and woken up to far more than $1000 of losses overnite due to stupid moves in the past...
It will make you money right off the bat to eliminate a part of the learning curve.
I have two content sites and many, many ppc sites...
I don't even try to build traffic on my ppc sites.
Not worth the time and effort for me...
I work on landing pages and conversions....
Find you someone that will sit down with you.
Help you to set up:
How to choose your search terms.
What to bid.
How to build quality landing pages.
It goes on and on........
This will save you $1000's and get you on track making money fast.
February 9th, 2010, 01:46 AM #16Originally Posted by mick.import
You know as well as I do, that that can't be answered...
I think that any niche that can build a couple thousand organic page views a day should be able to convert enough of that traffic to make a decent living...
If you can drive enough micro targeted traffic to your site, it may take a fraction of that...
February 9th, 2010, 01:28 PM #17
Thanks, Jimmy, I will look into that!
February 9th, 2010, 01:45 PM #18
February 9th, 2010, 03:38 PM #19
Originally Posted by mick.import
- Join Date
- February 6th, 2010
- miramar, florida
I stopped wondering about that when i had 400 unique visitors and zero sales and realized: Okey Dokey..this will take a while, so hunker down and make it interesting. Some Google Adwords helps it get it going, even though this bidding thing can get expensive.
February 9th, 2010, 04:12 PM #20
Ya know what BOGGLES mt brain sometimes???
Is that people ( some VERY smart ) think that starting an affiliate business is any different than starting a bricks and mortar company.....
If you want to do it right, you still have to have some capital to be successful...
February 9th, 2010, 04:32 PM #21
Originally Posted by RemodelingGuy
- Join Date
- February 6th, 2010
- miramar, florida
February 9th, 2010, 08:33 PM #22
I didn't expend any capital when I started. I didn't even register a domain for my site until my third month as an affiliate. (It was originally just a page on another site I had until then.) My fifth month as an affiliate, I surpassed my earnings in my regular job.
Affiliate marketing is pretty unique in that you CAN get into it without a large monetary investment.
February 9th, 2010, 09:36 PM #23Originally Posted by MichaelColey
What year was that ?????
In 1997, when I got started, it was easy to register a domain, get a host cheap and start bombarding the SE's with " Stuff " ...
I had investors at my feet wanting to get in on the new Cash Cow called the Internet...
I was the National Sales Manager for DoItYourself.com on the side...
Affiliate marketing wasn't even a word yet....
Could you do it today?
February 9th, 2010, 10:08 PM #24
Much harder today.
As for how much traffic and sales, it depends on what the topic is and what the conversion rates are.
Would I spend money to hire a PPC advisor? Probably not. Do I want to play poker on a daily basis in a game that has changing rules and higher entrance fees each week. Probably not. I know there is money in poker and PPC for people who focus on it and have a good run, but it isn;t a long-term solution. It rarely is a short term solution as most people lose money in both poker and PPC.
P.S. If you have a good site with a good product or service, PPC is a great way to advertise with very measurable ROI. However, if you are playing the PPC game sending traffic to landing pages with dime a dozen affiliate offers.... it is a hard game to play... and some search engines are starting to kick all affiliate types out of the game... plus, you aren't building any long-term value... other than how to play a difficult game you probably won't be allowed to play for much longer.[URL=http://www.investeverymonth.com]InvestEveryMonth.com[/URL] - Build Wealth
February 10th, 2010, 03:23 AM #25
I had a long drawn out reply to that OICUAM2 ....
I deleted it...
I TRULY Hope you guys don't think I am being surly or a wannabe know-it-all...
I'm the first to tell you that I am learning things on a daily basis....
But, if I were to get into this business today.....
.... everything I told lintlin, I would do and know I would be many steps ahead of the game.
She said she had some capital to put into her business.
That always helps..
For those that don't have capital, want to build quality, content rich sites, and are looking to the future to make cash, my advice would be much different...
I am being re-paid evey minute of the day, 365 days a year for the effort I've put into my content sites over the last 13 years....
OICUAM2 said ... Would I spend money to hire a PPC advisor? Probably not.
You have to find the right advisor....
I'm tellin' ya man....
If you can pick the brain of a winner and jump into the game with some ZEST, you're on you way!
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