The one thing that we have found since we started this website is that we seem to get the same questions asked time and time again. These were the same questions we used to ask when we were struggling to make it. Now I can see how futile those questions were but back then we just wanted answers.
We knew that something was holding us back. Was it the keywords we chose? Did we choose the right niche? Was there a better niche that we could have gone with? How long should it take for our keywords to rank? How long before we can start seeing the money come in?
Basically what we wanted to know was – what were we doing wrong? I even remember that we sent an email to James Martell (our mentor at the time) with that very same question.
We know now that what we were doing wrong was that we were providing very little value. We had plenty of traffic at the time but when our readers arrived at our site, they didn’t stay for very long because what we had to provide wasn’t worth reading. When we finally had that sorted out, we were on our way and many of the questions we had also disappeared. We no longer needed to ask them because we had finally figured it out.
You really don’t need to ask these questions either. You may think you do because you desperately want to make it, so you cling to the hope that just some tiny little snippet of information will finally make the difference between the mediocre and the outstanding for you. But when it comes down to it you really only need to do 3 things:
1. Choose quality products to promote.
2. Write excellent reviews that are extremely helpful to the reader.
3. Get traffic to your site – and yes that means backlinking.
That’s it! There’s nothing special about it but for some reason everyone (including us in the past) gets caught up in all the little things and getting caught up in the little things is what is going to set you back time and time again because it usually involves a whole lot of time wasting.
The analysis factor during the period when you are trying to make it is huge. What I mean by that is that a good part of your time is spent analyzing facts and figures as well as analyzing other peoples facts and figures. I can only just imagine how many people have analyzed our websites to see why we are making it. I know the thinking behind doing that but it doesn’t work. I know it doesn’t because it didn’t for us. We would constantly check out other peoples successful sites. We figured if their site was set up in a particular way then we should set our sites up in that way. And because they were focusing on a particular niche then we should focus on that niche. And if they were using a particular plugin then we should use that plugin. And if they were promoting their site using Facebook, then we should be promoting our site using Facebook. And if they were adding 10 posts a day then we should add 10 posts a day. And on and on it went.
It was all just one big time waster….nothing more, because it got us nowhere. In fact, it just kept setting us back because we would invariably start another website or spend time on an existing site changing the format completely. These are time wasters because they don’t involve any of the three steps listed above. We had websites already so we didn’t need to create new ones and the layout on our sites were fine – changing them wasn’t going to suddenly make us more money. Remember – it doesn’t matter if you have the best looking site on the web, if you don’t have any traffic, no one is going to see it, so no one is going to buy the products you are promoting.
This was a never ending cycle. If we had simply focused on one website and those three steps we would have been making money a lot sooner. But that’s all in the past now and we don’t want to dwell too long there and I can see that I am rambling on again instead of getting straight to the point which is answering our frequently asked questions so let’s get to it.
Your Questions Answered…
We get a lot of questions but these are the most commonly asked:
Have you been hit by the latest Panda update?
A few days ago we received an email from a reader telling us that there had been another Panda update. We had no idea, but then we don’t frequent forums or other peoples blogs too much these days so we are kind of secluded from what is actually going on out there.
If it affects us then we will know about it pretty darn quick because we will see our sales drop. So we aren’t going to worry about things before they happen and staying away from forums etc means that we can focus on the more important aspects to our business
But in answer to the question, at this point in time, we haven’t been hit by any of the Panda updates. Perhaps it is because of the style of backlinking we choose. It is one of the strongest forms of backlinking in our opinion. But I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, nobody really knows what Google is thinking so who knows what is going to happen in the future.
If we get hit we will let you know. We aren’t going to bother hiding it.
How long does it take to rank a keyword in the top 3 in Google?
This is one of our most commonly asked questions. Most understand that it can vary but they just want an average figure to focus on.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to answer. You could have a keyword rank within 10 minutes of posting the page or it might take two years. It ultimately depends on the competition for that keyword. If there is no competition then you will rank quickly. If there is a lot of competition then it will take a while.
And then of course backlinking comes into play. If you don’t do any backlinking then you will probably never rank for it. If you do a lot then you might rank in a couple of months or it could take a lot longer if the keyword is quite competitive.
We also don’t know how much effort you are going to put into this so we have no way of knowing how quickly you are going to rank for a keyword. One person might rank for a keyword in 3 months and another might rank in 6 months.
Which niche converts the best?
Every niche converts. It’s not about the niche, it’s about the individual product in that niche. Every niche is going to have good products and bad products. Your job is simply to pick the best products – products that you yourself would be happy to buy.
Do you recommend promoting electronic products?
We personally don’t. Apart from the fact that they only pay very low commissions, they also change constantly. So you might have a review for a particular laptop or a camera for instance that does really well and then suddenly it is superseded with a newer model. In our view, it’s too much work to keep up with it all.
How many Amazon products do you currently promote now on your blogs?
We don’t know the answer to this one of the top of our heads and we really don’t want to waste time finding out. We don’t keep track of the products we promote. We just keep fixing up reviews and backlinking. We no longer look at our stats – we just don’t want to waste our time doing it.
All you really need to know is that you can potentially make a full time income from just one page on the internet. A few more pages is better because you don’t want to put all your eggs in the one basket and not all pages will generate a full-time income, but it is definitely doable with just a handful of product reviews.
How many keywords are you currently ranking for?
Same as the answer above. We don’t check our stats often enough to know the answer.
How long will it be before I make any money?
The ultimate question of course. We all want to know how long it could take to start seeing some income come in. Again it’s a tough one to answer. There are so many variables to take into account including:
- the products you choose
- the quality of your reviews
- how much backlinking you do
- the competition
Most generally see some sort of income start to trickle in around the 3 month mark but it could be sooner or it could be later. It generally starts to build and then suddenly hits a plateau. At this point, most people hit the wall so to speak. They have put so much work into it all only to receive a few hundred dollars a month. It is around this time that people start to doubt the process. They think that they must be doing something wrong so they start looking for other methods to make money or they build another website thinking that they chose the wrong niche. This is the start of the Cycle of Doom that can be difficult to get out of.
Do you create a website based on just one product?
We have one website based on one product but personally we don’t recommend it. The reason we don’t is that at any time the product may go out of stock for extended periods or worse yet, the company may decide to no longer manufacture it. If this happens your site is basically useless and all your hard work goes down the drain.
Do you use domain names that are based on a product name?
We have only one website that uses the product name as the domain name but again we wouldn’t recommend it. It’s risky using a product brand or name because at any time the company could ask you to take it down. If you are going to do it, make sure that it doesn’t become your only source of income.
I have a number of websites but am not making much money. How many more do I need to make a full-time income?
You only need one website to make a full-time income. The more websites you build, the more work you will have to do. Building website after website doesn’t work. It just creates stress as it is impossible to manage multiple websites effectively.
This is covered fully in this blog post – The Affiliate Marketers Cycle of Doom.