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  1. #1
    Newbie
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    Do You...
    Build your site around a sponsor or choose sponsors that fit your site?

  2. #2
    Full Member Travelin Man's Avatar
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    Yes...
    Travelin' Man

    "If you don't know where you are going, any road will lead you there." -- unknown

  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travelin Man
    Yes...
    Great answer!

  4. #4
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    hehe maybe i should rework the question . What do you normally start out with first. A sponsor, who you think will be profitable and want to build a site around or a site that you're interested in and then go from there with sponsors who would fit well.

  5. #5
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    Both

  6. #6
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Rather than focusing on a single merchant, I think it's much more prudent to focus on a category. Merchants can change.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  7. #7
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    Focus
    Focusing a domain on a single merchant will in many cases get you a better commission.
    That is not to say that you can't have several domains that focus on a category.

  8. #8
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Focusing is very good. Focusing on a single merchant is risky.

    Diversify your income streams. If you're earning all your money from a single source, you're at huge risk. I've known too many companies and people who had all their eggs in one basket and faced a hard time as a resut.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Ward
    Focusing a domain on a single merchant will in many cases get you a better commission.
    That is not to say that you can't have several domains that focus on a category.
    great way to diversify

  10. #10
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    Or you can just have 1 big humongous site with all kinds of categories

  11. #11
    Sinclair Oil Lurker Jones's Avatar
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    yep
    Quote Originally Posted by TrustNo1
    Or you can just have 1 big humongous site with all kinds of categories
    go for broke, man. just don't end up that way!
    [B][COLOR=Red]I look forward to Google's demise[/COLOR][/B]
    Look who is suing Google - [URL=http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=google+gets+sued]click here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q=google+gets+sued&FORM=MSNH&srch_type=0]here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=google+gets+sued&fr=FP-tab-web-t&toggle=1&cop=&ei=UTF-8]here[/URL]

  12. #12
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    A huge site is good, but don't underestimate the value of specialization. For instance, there are thousands of coupon sites out there. But there are only a few that specialize in particular areas. Those that are specialized get some very, very targeted traffic and most of them earn more than the average "all purpose" coupon site.
    Michael Coley
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador
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    The good thing about a big shopping site is you can also make specialized pages. You can make product pages, you can make a computer deals section/page, you can get targetted free/PPC traffic to those pages. You can add a new category/section anytime you want. You can do anything with them.

  14. #14
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    What Trust said. Malls =

    Plus, even if a whole category dies for whatever reason, there's still a large amount of site left.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  15. #15
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Right, but a specialized page on a general site doesn't have the same attraction that a specialized site has. For example, why are we here on ABestWeb.com rather than on an affiliate section of a general business or webmaster forum?
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  16. #16
    Sgt. Joe Friday frank3iii's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey
    ...Diversify your income streams....
    Agreed.

    Just yesterday I received two cease and desist orders in the same envelope. These were for very narrow niche sites (one product per site) where I had used the product name in the domain.

    The merchant had assured me a year ago (or so) that the manufacturer was very lenient on the use of the trademarded name(s). Times change.

    Oh well. I have a replacement in the starting blocks. I think it is always prudent to have replacements ready just in case.

    Every day was an emotional roller coaster before I started to diversify.

    The easiest way to diversify is to do it from the start. Like the others said, do a mall site first. Then when you learn what sells you can narrow your focus. Niche sites do very well if they are targeted well.

    Frank
    "Just the facts, Ma'am." Sgt. Joe Friday, Dragnet

  17. #17
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    How do you wrangle a raise from your merchant if your site can only sell her thang-a-ma-bob?

    And merchants get bought, change directions, decide to disallow ppc campaigns, etc. If you can build sites lickety split, you're fine. But for us A/R types who like to plan it, conceptualize it, improve and redesign it, work on my other creations in progress, A/B test, overhaul it, create tweak and tune a ppc campaign... and then launch it - there's too much risk on vendor-centricity.... by the time I'm ready to sell, the merchant has moved to another state... or canceled me for lack of sales...

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador
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    "The easiest way to diversify is to do it from the start. Like the others said, do a mall site first."

    I'm doing it first and last. What i look to diversify is the many ways to get traffic. Do what works for you. There are so many ways.

  19. #19
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frank3iii
    Like the others said, do a mall site first. Then when you learn what sells you can narrow your focus. Niche sites do very well if they are targeted well.
    Excellent advice, and probably one of the best reasons to have a mall or coupon site. It'll give you many, many ideas for other sites.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  20. #20
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    How do you wrangle a raise from your merchant if your site can only sell her thang-a-ma-bob?
    If you can sell a large number of thang-a-ma-bobs, it's not hard at all to get a raise. If you have a dozen different merchants you can sell thang-a-ma-bobs for, it's even easier.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  21. #21
    Domain Addict / Formerly known as elbowcreek Thomas A. Rice's Avatar
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    too many right people, I like all your answers.

    I focus on small niche sites, and do very well. Enough that I have approached several merchants for a commission increase, and received it with no difficulty whatsoever. A niche site that focusses on one merchant gives you power, because you begin to generate tremendous traffic and sales for that one merchant. It's not risky in the least, in that I have a couple dozen niche sites focussed on different merchants.

    I have several rather large 'mall' sites, that do generate sales as well.

    The nice thing about AM is you are not limited, it is all up to you and your comfort level. Build a mall site. Build a niche site. Build a merchant site, and recruit affiliates. It's all good.
    Following everyone else is a GREAT way to become average.

  22. #22
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    Build a mall out of all the merchants that really interest you because then you become very familliar with their product lines and have a master feed to draw from. Use that information to find things that really interest you and that you would like to promote. Build niche sites around those things. Mix and match your merchants around areas of interest. You can do this best if you have a master feed to draw from. You will be surprised at the target niches you can come up with. With a master feed, you can even annotate ideas such as these items would go well on site A but I can also fit them into site C and D.
    Comments are opinion unless otherwise noted. Remember, pillage first. Then burn. Half of all people in the world have IQs under 100. You best learn to trust ol' SSanf!

  23. #23
    ABW Ambassador AddHandler's Avatar
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    LURKER -- that should be your tagline

    "Go for broke, just don't end up that way!"

    That's a good one..

  24. #24
    ABW Ambassador erninator's Avatar
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    For me the mall site was the way to go. Each category/page can be as targeted as you want. You can add or remove merchants easily. Seasonal spikes and dips are evened out with a diversified mall site. Best of all is that you can test merchants, products and the competition. If something works, keep it. If not, delete it. If something works really well, go ahead and build that niche site for a particular subject, but not for one merchant only.

    Building a mall is like making a big snowball. Start small and keep adding to it a little at a time. Don't be stressed over acheiving overnight success. Be patient, build more pages and before long the momentum will build up.
    ~Ernie

  25. #25
    notary sojac Herb ԿԬ's Avatar
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    Cool
    I have some malls and some niche directories, but my newer sites are more narrow in subject where I can use the offerings (products) of two or more merchants to round out the site. If either merchant craps out on me the replacement is easy to find.

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