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  1. #1
    Member pokerturkey's Avatar
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    April 18th, 2005
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    Your Success Story - Inspiration needed!
    Hi everyone,

    I apologize if this has been done before, but I was wondering if anyone would like to share stories about their successful transformation from wage slave to an independently wealthy webmaster.

    I'm new in the field and I'm getting tons of skepticism from my friends and family. They think I'm crazy spending time working on websites on my free time. Wait until they find out I plan on quitting my job to work on my website full time.

    But I need courage and inspiration my friends! Tell me your stories!

  2. #2
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Don't listen to your friends or family. Your free time is your free time, and if you enjoy working on websites, so what?

    I did not experience any skepticism from anybody. However, I was working full time, and started a little six-page website back in August 2000. I stumbled upon affiliate marketing by accident. Somebody had written to me asking where they could buy something I talked about on my website. When I went searching for the item, I hit on a site with an "Affiliate Marketing" link and thought, "Cool Beans! I can do this website and even make a little money too."

    It started out as just a hobby. My first sale garnered me a $2.00 commission and I was hooked. Long story short. I kept building my site, and quit my job in March 2003. Wow! Can't believe I've been free for over two years now. I'm making more money per annum then I ever did working for somebody else. Took three vacations last year. This year spent $3000 having my favorite sofa recovered, and another $8000 having tile put down in my house. Paid cash for everything. Except for a mortgage, pretty much debt-free. No car payments. Less than $1000 in credit cards.

    So, tell you friends and family to spend their free time doing what they enjoy doing, and you keep on with what you're doing! You'll show them once you have enough money in the bank, that you don't have to work for somebody else any more.

  3. #3
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    i've been webmaster of a couple sites since the late 1990s, but they were really labour for love sites, no real money.

    then last january i jumped off into the affiliate world. typically i make over 10K/month, with a couple times being in the 23-25K/month. this is with a few hours of work at night on the weekends, yes i still have my fulltime job but ditching it by fall so i can do this fulltime.

    the 'extra change' has definitely been good. went off on a 'money is no object' vacation earlier this year, and about to seal a deal to own my first bit of real estate

    i'll be moving back 'home' (country) too later this year, and my sister keeps asking me where i am going to work .. she just doesn't get the whole concept of me working on 'my sites' and paying the bills off that. LOL

  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I've been full time for over five years. Here's a little bit about the successes I've seen:

    http://forum.abestweb.com/showthread.php?t=55859
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Jane's Avatar
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    Well your friends probably think you should spend your time hanging out and entertaining them. On the off chance that you never make any money at this you are at least spending your time learning new things. A lot more interesting than playing poker or watching another dull movie.

    Watch what happens when all the checks start rolling in. Your friends and family will start asking you to teach them how to do it, or worse yet expect you to do it for them.

    Even my dog has her own web site. She didn't quit her job cause she never had one, but she can buy her own food now.
    Last edited by Jane; May 29th, 2005 at 09:44 AM. Reason: addition

  6. #6
    Member pokerturkey's Avatar
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    *sigh of relief*

    This is fantastic guys! Thanks for sharing your stories! I will revisit this thread often whenever the html starts to get blurry....

    Do you guys/gals attribute your success to:

    1. Natural talent
    2. Being at the right place at the right time
    3. Out working the competition
    4. Your dog

    In other words, do you think other people can be as successful as you or do you feel that you owe your success to a unique talent or circumstance that may not be available to the average joe?

    Tracy - Being debt free sounds so good. That really cheered me up.

    Michael - I loved what you said about staying home with your son. Spending time with family is a big motivation for me.

    t5 - I can't believe you are waiting to quit your job when you already have a $10k income! Your job must be freaking awesome. Are you the bouncer at the Playboy mansion?

    Jane - You're right, I think a lot of times my friends just wish I would hang out with them instead of working on this pipedream. So, what kind of site does your dog have?

    BTW, If you guys don't mind, may I ask the name of your website so I can check out what a successful affiliate site looks like? If posting links are not allowed in here, feel free to PM me.

  7. #7
    The Thin White Duke PreacherMan's Avatar
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    April 22nd, 2005
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    Here's my story so far:

    I lost my job in May of last year and subsequently had a lot of free time on my hands. While building a website for my brother's garden design business in September I discovered SEO and I was hooked. I learned tons and tons of SEO in the coming months.

    My initial goal was to build a site so I could make a nice bit of cash from Google Adsense and through my learning and research I stumbled across affiliate marketing. So last month I added a store to one of my sites (totally dynamic using datafeeds). The store also runs Adsense. 1 and a half weeks after the store went live I started to receive a nice amount of traffic from Yahoo and the clickthroughs started to happen. The next week after that Google started to send me very targeted traffic. My free time learning SEO had defintely come in very useful.

    This week I have made my first OK amount of money (enough to pay rent and feed myself) with commissions and Adsense revenue combined. You can not imagine how happy this makes me. I did nothing all week and I made money! Also this week I added 4 X the number of products I originally had in my store so theorectically my earnings could multiply by 4 very soon.

    This last year has been very risky for me. I had to survive on savings pretty much and now they have depleted a lot. When I discovered SEO in September I knew I was onto something. I subsequently turned down a nice paying job because my heart was elsewhere and I knew I would not realize my dream if I took it. I needed to dedicate myself 100%.

    The best thing that could have happened to me is that I lost my old job. I wouldn't advise anyone to give up their job for affiliate marketing because it is risky.

    This month has been successful. I really hope that it grows from here because it has become my job now. I really have all the guys and gals here at ABestWeb for helping me realize my dreams. Ok back to work ...

  8. #8
    Affiliate Addict Robert484848's Avatar
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    January 18th, 2005
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    Smile
    PokerTurkey
    Affiliate marketing can be a lot of work but also very rewarding. If I did not love to build web sites I dont think I would be in this business.
    You might not realize it yet but you have already taken a step in the right direction, you found A Best Web! This board has helped me more than any thing else in growing my business.
    Keep working on your site, be patient and read ABW every day.
    Good luck and welcome to ABW
    winning is a habit unfortunately so is losing

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador Jane's Avatar
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    My dog of course sells things she knows about, pet supplies. The best things to start with are things you know about, or things you want to learn more about. Some things you do will work out well and others may fail. That is how you learn as you earn.

    Posting links to your own site is allowed, but I think you will find most people don't like to post their sites here. The one main thing you need to succeed is traffic. Decide what products you want to promote and do a search. You will find plenty of affiliate sites. Whoever comes up first in Google is probably doing well.

  10. #10
    Full Member markschok's Avatar
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    I wish I'd found ABW much earlier on.
    I started a hobby site quite a few years ago and got maybe a couple of cheques a year from it. Since joining ABW about 2 years I've learned A LOT, started a mall type site in Nov last year which has gone from strength to strength in my eyes but I realise it's probably pretty small fish compared to some guys in here. Commisions for the mall site in May have reach about 900 / $1500. Still working a j*b too doing this in my spare time.
    my advice would be;

    Read everything you can at ABW
    But don't spend to much time reading, you need to get building web pages
    Learn SEO
    Work on niche sites and mall type sites
    Find a niche you are interested in and build a site for that.
    Learn HTML JavaScript PHP+MySql RSS XML - DONT PANIC
    Work out what you can sell the best and what's going to make you money
    Work out how to make a little money, then multipy
    Don't try any dirty tricks, don't get tempted by the darkside

    Well done on finding ABW early on. It really is the best place to be, and Great Luck

    P.S. one more tip. While you are still working a J*B, find a nice desk job with internet access ;-) .

  11. #11
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pokerturkey
    Do you guys/gals attribute your success to:

    1. Natural talent
    2. Being at the right place at the right time
    3. Out working the competition
    4. Your dog
    You hit some of the right things. A lot of it is under your own control.

    I think the biggest part to "natural" talent is what you put into it. You might think that professional sports players have a lot of natural talent. They do. But they put an incredible amount of time and effort into it as well.

    Being in the right place at the right time is important, too, but you have a lot of control over that as well. I was one of the first coupon sites out there, but that was because I saw a need for it and couldn't find anything that filled that need. What do you see a need for?

    Work smart and hard is really important. If you find a really good concept for a site, you'll have a lot of competition. How are you going to distinguish yourself?
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  12. #12
    Member pokerturkey's Avatar
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    Cool... more awesome advice! This is such a friendly forum. I wonder if being self-employed and independently wealthy makes people more friendly in general....

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador erninator's Avatar
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    I also had to ignore the skeptical family and friends for the first year of building my mall site. I always heard, "Are you still on the computer?". Now it's a daily rush to the mailbox to count the commission checks. Four years ago I made beer and pizza money. After 2 years the website bought all the groceries and now it pays all the bills, feeds our retirements funds and pays for a fabulous two week vacation.

    Affiliate marketing is my second home business so I'm not looking forward to quitting a J-O-B. Primarily I design custom homes and have been successful doing that since I was 15. I began affiliate marketing as a back-up income in case the first business experienced a downturn in the construction industry.

    Luckily I could build the site by investing a couple hours each day. Learn what works and do it again. Learn what doen't work and don't repeat your mistakes. Add a little patience and you'll be amazed at what you can acheive.
    ~Ernie

  14. #14
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    A couple of hints
    AM is a great occupation. I had jobs I liked and jobs I didn't like. Had real world businesses too. Employees, rent, insurance, taxes, regulations, and long hours. No more.

    A couple lessons I've learned and rules I try to abide by on each new web site:
    1. Build sites about something you understand. Both the products and the market. Follow the example of Jane's dog.
    2. Build sites about something that turns you on and keeps you interested. Some webmasters seem to be able to sell anything. But for me, I need to be interested to make a good sales pitch.
    3. No matter how interesting or fun a subject is, be careful of building a site that requires too much maintenance and work to keep it updated. I have a couple that dominate my time. They make a little money, but I wish I had used a different concept when designing them to be more hands off.
    4. I don't have any big portals or shopping sites. Just a collection of niche sites. That works for me. I'm always working on a new one.
    5. Have fun. Plenty ways to do that such as building interesting sites, learning new stuff, and best of all, Cashing Checks.

    Jane said:
    Watch what happens when all the checks start rolling in. Your friends and family will start asking you to teach them how to do it, or worse yet expect you to do it for them.
    That never happened to me. My friends and family just don't get it, even though I've tried to explain it many times. They still think I'm just some kind of bum playing on my computer. It drives them crazy trying to figure out how I live without a "real" job. So their skepticism has morphed into confusion.

  15. #15
    Lone Ranger muddyboots's Avatar
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    I've been doing it full time for almost six months. I started experimenting a few months before that. It was a convenient time for me to leave my position as president of a small ad agency and take a shot at this. It has worked very well for me. It provides a similar income after six months of hard work, ups and downs, and allows tremendous flexibility. I start most days at 6 am, checking the business from the night before. Then I hike up in the mountains with my two german shepherds while I contemplate the day's work. Then I do it. If the weather's too nice, I skip it and engage in outdoor activities. When I rains, I slave over a hot keyboard.

    I think it's important to experiment. Test ideas. Don't overthink things. Don't let others discourage you. We've all been made fun of when that first $10.49 commission comes in (that was my first one on a gift basket).

    Marketing is common sense. Build sites that are designed with the consumer/visito in mind. Don't think too hard about the search engines, think about what works for consumers.

    Have fun. Live well. Enjoy.
    Dennis Duffy
    Slavin' over a hot keyboard for nickels & dimes ... and nobody understands what I do.

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