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  1. #1
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    I hate that Affiliate marketing does not really work for the small guy?
    Hi,

    I have several sites I have left dormant (for months, years) because the upkeep was way to much.

    In terms of hours spent on a site and the return monetary wise, was how shall we say like banging ones head against a wall expecting something good to come of it.

    For example, one of my sites auto-workz.com was picked up by the search engines had a decent run then puuff... magically disappeared never to return again. So what should I do with it ?

    auto-workz is not the only affiliate site of mine now in need of maintenance, I had good success with another which I also kept up to date (database wise) and in its best month sold over $14,000 for one merchant and $22,000 overall for that month. (What did I get in return for what I thought was a great success, silence but that came with a check) still trickling a few bucks a month. So again what should I do with it ?

    Oh yea, that Betty Mills site, good for a couple hundred a month then...

    My question to Affiliate Managers is, having spent dozens of hours at the rate of 0.17 cents an hour where is the incentive to produce non-spam, maybe even informative sites.

    Not to put all the blame on just affiliate programs. My main site (which got me started in all this) and is still going strong, is also seeing a decline in google adsense revenue (first 2 years over a thousand a month, currently just over a hundred) what the frigg happened?

  2. #2
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    How about building a site that is actually useful? Sites that like are at the mercy of the search engines, and search engines don't like them.
    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

  3. #3
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    I hear you Michael, and I apologize for my whinny first post. I realize that site and some others I have are pretty useless but what to do with it? I just don't have the time or motivation to make them useful. How about I give control and host the site for someone just starting out in affiliate marketing. They can learn the craft of marketing without investing any money, and if successful maybe I could get a small say 15% cut of the profits in return. The site is listed in the search engines and as far as I know not black listed for anything, it just needs a fresh start.

  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I wasn't suggesting making those sites useful. I was suggesting making a useful site, like the idea I mentioned here. There are thousands of ideas like that, from which you could build a useful site. I just gave that one as an example.
    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

  5. #5
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    So what drop it? get rid of it.

  6. #6
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    So amazing-bargains.com posts coupons, hardly earth shattering. That is your interpretation of useful?

  7. #7
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    So amazing-bargains.com posts coupons, hardly earth shattering. That is your interpretation of useful?
    Thousands of webmasters, bloggers, and forum members have posted about Amazing-Bargains.com on their sites. Dozens of newspapers, magazines, TV shows, and radio programs have mentioned Amazing-Bargains.com. Thousands of people come to Amazing-Bargains.com every day. Hundreds of people have sent me emails thanking me for Amazing-Bargains.com. Over a thousand merchants have approached me, wanting to have their coupons and promotions listed on Amazing-Bargains.com. It's been successful (and consistent) enough that I've been able to do this full time for over 7 years. Yes, I would say that many people consider it useful.

    P.S. I've split this out from the main thread. We've gone off topic enough that it warrants its own thread.
    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

  8. #8
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    So amazing-bargains.com posts coupons, hardly earth shattering. That is your interpretation of useful?
    heheheee. i should've seen this coming. but i'm on vacation and partying with Uncle Scooter and wasn't feeling all jaded today.

    primate, further evolution is needed, on your part, before you can "see" another human being's efforts to help guide you (which you did request), just might be something other than competition for the next banana.

  9. #9
    Affiliate Manager adambha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    primate, further evolution is needed, on your part, before you can "see" another human being's efforts to help guide you (which you did request), just might be something other than competition for the next banana.
    Witty. Apropos.

    ...and it just made me smile.

  10. #10
    Pimp Duck popdawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    primate, further evolution is needed, on your part, before you can "see" another human being's efforts to help guide you (which you did request), just might be something other than competition for the next banana.
    ================================================================
    Been away, now I'm back. Not as much, but I'm back & starting from scratch. Where I was, was fantastic. Where I am now, less so. Things have changed, become harder. So have I. Game ON!!!
    ================================================================

  11. #11
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Amazing-bargains also has had the daylights promoted out of it. Not meaning that negatively. But I remember a lot of effort put into promotion in years past (and probably is still ongoing), which must have greatly expanded its reach. Press releases, traffic-building programs, etc. all add up.

    A lot of people say they do a lot of unspecified "work" on their sites, and it turns out being for naught because at the bottom of it all, they still have an "if I build it [Now with loads of Work(TM) included!] they will come" mindset. They put their efforts in the wrong place. Work is NOT MAGIC--if you don't aim your efforts right, you're wasting your time.

    When all the other factors (good merchant, non-saturated product type, etc.) are in place:

    I've found that usually whatever site I promote is the one that makes the most sales, compared with similarly-situated nonadvertised sites. Even a fairly small investment has made a difference at times, and not always in a way that I can determine exactly just how it's doing it. But the correlation is consistant: Unpromoted sites tend to wither, while advertised ones start growing.

    I have several sites I have left dormant (for months, years) because the upkeep was way to much.
    You say you've ignored your sites for up to "years." That tends to have a predictable set of things that'll need doing:

    First thing I'd do is go through 'em with a weed whacker and get rid of all the dead merchants, dead products, etc. that will have accumulated. Dead merchants are like lead anvils, and any site that you haven't whacked them off of isn't going to rank (except when there's a glitch in the algo, which can cause those pages to show...and Murphy's Law seems to make sure that it never shows the pages with live stuff when there's dead merchants' crap that can be shown instead!).

    Then I'd pick some proven-winner products (the ones that sold great when traffic was coming, and which have merchants that are still alive with program active) on one or 2 sites, and promote the h*ll out of those pages. Not those sites, those *pages.* Make sure to link promoted pages to the rest of your site in the nav, so any rank increases can spread around and maybe help some of the other pages. Use PPC if you've got the knack for it, but don't ignore other methods.

    Keep doing that for all the products that are really worth the effort. Do cost-benefit analysis on EVERYTHING you're thinking of doing any work on! Don't spend even one calorie's worth of effort on anything that doesn't meet the ROI test. And--importantly--don't just figure your financial costs, make sure to calculate an acceptable cost for your time and effort as part of the ROI calculation! Consider it as if your time actually costs = whatever you want to make per hr. Make it good. Then put effort/money only into stuff that will pay that and give you a profit on top of that to boot!

    Forget bothering with any effort at all for the items you know are duds, those things that dragged your overall earnings down to 17c/hr. That's a shockingly atrocious figure and nowhere NEAR where it ought to be! Leave the low-ROI stuff to Google's irrational whims, or just delete it if it's dragging down the high-paying stuff. But don't waste any real effort on known rubbish. Caveat: YOUR bestsellers will probably NOT be what's on the "bestseller" list of any merchant. Things on those lists are usually bombarded in competing affiliates, giving everyone about 1/2000th of the pie. Better to have 1/2 of a slightly smaller pie that only you and maybe one other dude know about.

    If you promote the good (high return on both investment and effort) stuff, and ignore/delete the duds, your earnings/hr should greatly improve.

    As for SE rankability--Don't worry if the Big G free money-printer is an uncooperative POS. Big deal. When it's not cooperating, use the Yahoo printer that accepts money. That one works fine. It's just ridiculous for anyone to say a Sales Site that converts "doesn't work" because G doesn't like it or buries it. All I have to do is toss a $100 into Yahoo and it comes back as $400 every time I do it!!! That's the very definitition of a site that works.

    If your sites actually don't work--as in, when traffic comes, they don't convert it well--of course that needs to be fixed before embarking on any major promotions. Test any pages you're thinking of promoting, with some minor PPC runs.

    It's amazing how the memory works, too...good to retest before assuming anything. Stuff you barely remember may be the winner, and vice-versa. Plus, markets change through the years. So it's always good to do a test run before going full throttle on any promotion.

    My main site (which got me started in all this) and is still going strong, is also seeing a decline in google adsense revenue (first 2 years over a thousand a month, currently just over a hundred) what the frigg happened?
    Just a short touch on this, since the post is long already.

    By going strong, I assume you mean traffic-wise. And since you're using AdSense as its primary revenue, I'm guessing it's some kind of content site.

    So to increase AdSense revenue, I'd say to talk about something more lucrative. The hard part is to avoid mentioning anything on the same page that accidentally brings up ads that *aren't* lucrative! AdSense has an uncanny way of seizing on every unlucrative phrase that's mentioned even in passing.

    It's likely that what happened is that topics that are less-than-lucrative in terms of click fees have crept in and finally took over. Try guiding it toward subjects where people are bidding out the wazoo. You may not be able to get 100% high-ticket bids (I don't know how much leeway you have to change the subject matter and still keep the traffic), but you should be able to "happen to" get some higher-ticket stuff on there at least to some extent.
    Last edited by Leader; March 29th, 2007 at 08:38 AM.
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    So amazing-bargains.com posts coupons, hardly earth shattering. That is your interpretation of useful?
    Brilliant. The site has made more than all of your sites and your daily income for likely a year or more, and yet you still ridicule him for trying to help.

    It's obvious you've been in whine mode since you've been here. My earth-shattering interpretation of you is that you're on the edge of quitting, but just need that extra little push.

  13. #13
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    "I hate that Affiliate marketing does not really work for the small guy?"


    unfortunately, there is some truth to that.

    i am aware of affiliates giving up this business after their nosedive, because they can't stand the ups and downs.
    i am also aware of gurus who went on to barely making a buck.

    the thing is, there's not only you in this field. there's plenty of us.

    and there are plenty of ways too of others hacking at your earnings, from parasites, to rogue affiliates, to merchants themselves.


    the bigs eats the small.

  14. #14
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    this small guy, a one man show, finds that it works. in fact, i can't think of any business with it's potential that has a lower barrier to entry. affiliate marketng is perfect for the little guy. as my business has grown enormously over the years, i'v also been able to remain a one-man show. how can that be if it's not good for the small guy?

    don't let losers convince you that their misery is justified, they just want company.

  15. #15
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    [QUOTE=primate]I had good success with another which I also kept up to date (database wise) and in its best month sold over $14,000 for one merchant and $22,000 overall for that month. (What did I get in return for what I thought was a great success, silence but that came with a check) still trickling a few bucks a month. So again what should I do with it ?QUOTE]

    Sounds to me like you did have success, but were surprised that sites need to be maintained.

    It also seems that you believe AM managers were supposed to comment. While $22,000 might seem like a lot to you, it may have been a drop in the bucket for the company overall. Personally I'm happy if they send the check promptly and let me run my business.

    I'm just one person working part-time at this, and I'm amazed at what can be accomplished, with minimal start-up costs and almost no financial risk.

  16. #16
    Classic Rocker Mack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    don't let losers convince you that their misery is justified, they just want company.
    I'm going to go through this forum and extract all of your great quotes. I'll write an e-book called "Wisdom Through Donuts" and sell a million copies. I'll even let you be my first affiliate and run my PPC campaign (after I steal all of your quotes).

  17. #17
    Affiliate Network Rep Kim Salvino's Avatar
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    Hi Primate,

    I send out quite a few commission checks to some "small guys" each month. The checks...well, they're not quite so small...

    I'd say your statement would be closer to accurate if you added "who is looking to get rich quick with minimal effort" to the end of it. The bottom line is you get back what you put in.
    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    I have several sites I have left dormant (for months, years) because the upkeep was way to much...
    ...auto-workz is not the only affiliate site of mine now in need of maintenance
    I think both Michael and Leader have given you some exceptional advice. You'll need to decide if you want to invest the time and move forward, first and foremost. These people are successful; they know what works and what doesn't. That's what is so great about ABW - you ask for advice and someone is there to help. Acknowledge them for attempting to help you out and then do what you will with their advice.
    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    My question to Affiliate Managers is, having spent dozens of hours at the rate of 0.17 cents an hour where is the incentive to produce non-spam, maybe even informative sites.
    How about being able to sleep at night, knowing you have earned commissions that are rightfully yours? How about the self-pride that comes from giving something your all and being happy with the finished product?

    In my opinion, the ultimate incentive comes when you have provided something of value to your site visitor. The money will follow. There are at least a dozen ideas I have off the bat to monetize your auto-werkz site, but none of them will work without a little elbow grease. (Auto parts (foreign/domestic), Product reviews, a rating system for visitors, maybe a page on sprucing up your car before trade-in with recommended featured products, a page on passing emissions tests, changing a flat tire, etc.) But what do I know, I'm a check-selling gal.

    I wish you the best of luck with whatever you decide to do. I suspect you've just hit a speed bump in the road. The choice to pull over or speed up is yours...

    Take care,
    Kim Salvino, Client Services Director, Performance Horizon Group
    Reach me at kim.salvino(at)performancehorizon.com or on (443) 617-4036

  18. #18
    ABW Ambassador
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donuts
    this small guy, a one man show, finds that it works. in fact, i can't think of any business with it's potential that has a lower barrier to entry. affiliate marketng is perfect for the little guy. as my business has grown enormously over the years, i'v also been able to remain a one-man show. how can that be if it's not good for the small guy?

    don't let losers convince you that their misery is justified, they just want company.
    i too am a one-man show who has steadily grown over the years. but yesteryears are different than today. there's more sharks in the water. i cannot say that my situation would be the same for others.

    then again, if there's something to be complained about, i ain't the guy who just sits still. some may call this whining. some may call this being a loser. but i call it a part of doing business. that's one reason how i stayed this long.

  19. #19
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leader
    Amazing-bargains also has had the daylights promoted out of it. Not meaning that negatively. But I remember a lot of effort put into promotion in years past (and probably is still ongoing), which must have greatly expanded its reach. Press releases, traffic-building programs, etc. all add up.
    I've done some promotion, but virtually all of the growth and continuing success has been through word of mouth. None of that would have happened if people didn't consider it a useful site. When I started it, there were perhaps only half a dozen other coupon sites (and I didn't know about any of them). For bargain shoppers, a site that consolidates coupons is very useful. I expend a considerable amount of effort keeping the site useful, by staying on top of coupons/bargains and adding new features.

    I really don't want the focus to be on me, though. There are tons of other ideas for making a useful site. I think affiliate marketing is simple enough that even a primate can do it. But just throwing up a datafeed-based site is going to be very hit and miss. You're at the mercy of the search engines, and search engines despise low-value, duplicate content sites. Sure, some people are able to be successful with it for a time, but it's not a good long-term plan.
    Michael Coley
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    "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela

  20. #20
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by primate
    So amazing-bargains.com posts coupons, hardly earth shattering. That is your interpretation of useful?
    OMG, it is an ICON site that everyone knows. I see you are brand spankin' new, so we should let you slide on that silly comment. Why is your name PRIMATE by the way?

    "A mammal of the order Primates, which includes the anthropoids and prosimians, characterized by refined development of the hands and feet, a shortened snout, and a large brain. "

    Bizarre. Take some advice from the evolved people here, you can learn a great deal.

  21. #21
    Newbie affilio's Avatar
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    I think some affiliates need to learn a little more about SEO before that start complaining that they're not getting any traffic and that "it" isn't working.

    For instance: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q...2F&btnG=Search

    That query will show that you have only 9 pages outside of the supplemental index on Google. How many pages are in your site? Hundreds? Thousands? Well guess what - Google is only going to show 9 of them unless someone provides an extremely specific search query.

    Why? Probably because your descriptions are either very short (pulled in from the title?) or not there at all. Some pages - like this auto-workz.com/atv-parts-accessories.htm - don't have anything at all for keywords and descriptions.

    "But meta tags aren't important anymore". If that's what you think, you're totally wrong. No, they aren't going to make you competitive, but without them you'll be doomed.

    There are tons of other things you could do to improve your search rankings, but with something fundamental like this needing work, I'm not going to provide a full report on all of the other stuff. Take care of this first.
    Last edited by Haiko de Poel, Jr.; March 29th, 2007 at 01:41 PM. Reason: removed link

  22. #22
    Member Welshie's Avatar
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    Primate,

    It's all about research & metrics.

    Test something see if it works if it's not, try something else. Keep trying till you get a winner. As my dear sweet Grannie always says, a poor workman always blames his tools. So test something else - if you're not making enough $ from a program, call your AM and find out what is working. You're both in it to make $.

    Competitor research - if you aren't converting and you don't rank see who is and do it better.

    There are many people on this site who work hard every day to come with a winning recipe - but, they need to maintain it. A little bit of oil goes a long way to success. Imagine a fashion designer making an outfit 20 years ago and never making anything else...same deal in affiliate marketing except things change quicker.

    Ping me and I'd be glad to help...I haven't got access to the email here yet (newbie), but I'll email you back when I do.

    Ceri

    Donuts...everyday you put a smile on my face. Lemme buy you a drink ...

  23. #23
    Newbie bizzer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Welshie
    Donuts...everyday you put a smile on my face. Lemme buy you a drink ...
    Go for it!....

    May I suggest Dunkin's?

    ps: Donuts: you do have a way with the pen that I would die for!!!

  24. #24
    Ride It Like You Stole It CowgirlUp's Avatar
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    I have had several commercial sites that were sattelites of brick and mortor business that were entirley informational in nature with paypal to pay your "store" invoice instead of mailing in a check. One of these sites was only 1 of 6 of it's kind in the world (it's a niche of taxidermy that's too disgusting to talk about) and we would have loved numbers like those. Granted those #'s would be almost pure profit but still....we had practically no competition at that time.

    My site has made a grand total of .58 cents this last month and I'm tickled pink. I'm new, have no idea how to properly affiliate, but I believe in the content and purpose of it so I work my yaya's off at it.

    Wish I had a site that doesn't need maintenece to bring me numbers like that!
    Be the change you want to see in the world ~ Gandhi

  25. #25
    general fuq mrbshouse's Avatar
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    I love post like this that ***** about commissions then complain about dropping adsense revenue....gee did your commissions drop when you threw adsense on?

    auto-wurks? 9 pages in google and 704 in yahoo and nothing in MSN do you think that maybe you need to look at why google & MSN don't like your site? You may even want to consider how easy it is to navigate i had no idea where to start when i hit your index.

    You seem to be very good with data driven sites....try to focus on a smaller target and your theme will be stronger.

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