How to setup an affiliate website

How to set up an affiliate website in WordPress

So in my last post I talked about purchasing an expired domain to gain some SEO advantage over the competition. In today’s post I’ll talk about how to set up an affiliate website using WordPress as the content management system.

If you read my last post, you will know I purchased a promising expired domain, with a good backlink profile. Now it’s time to activate the domain and install WordPress on it and start creating content.

I will show you exactly how I setup my fresh WordPress installation to optimize SEO, usability and security. There are also couple important legal notifications that are pretty much required on every website, especially if you intent to use affiliate marketing on the site.

How to setup an affiliate website

If you are new to affiliate marketing or blogging it can be really overwhelming to even set up WordPress. Just think about how hard this stuff was a decade or two ago when content management system really weren’t a thing. You had to know A LOT more technical stuff just to get a website up and running.

Even though setting up WordPress can seem complicated it really isn’t. You just have to know what to do. WordPress being as popular as it is, means there are a ton of free tutorials, themes and resources. Too many actually.

The problem is with finding what is important and what is not. You can spend hours and hours reading about plugins and end up more confused than you were when you started.

The steps I’m about to show are very simple, but every one of them is important and hours of research has been put behind them. So without further ado, let’s get to it!

1. Installing WordPress

Naturally we will start by installing WordPress on our domain. I will not walk you through this as there are plenty of tutorials that show this step-by-step depending on where you host your domain.

Most of the larger hosting companies these days offer a one click WordPress install, since it is the go-to CMS for most bloggers and casual webmasters. If you are on a hosting service/server that requires you to do it manually you probably won’t end up reading my material any ways.

On the other hand if your hosting service requires manual installation through FTP and you don’t know how to do it, just chance your service provider. The internet has evolved sot that you don’t need to know or even understand all the technical stuff anymore. Sure, it can help, but creating a successful, profitable website is completely doable without prior technical knowledge.

I use Wealthy Affiliate as my hosting service currently, since they offer a very easy and fast user interface which allow me to focus my efforts on the stuff that really matter like SEO, content creation and research. So it’s a resource thing really. I would love to know more about the tech stuff but currently I simply don’t have the time.

Fortunately I grew up in a time where I had to create my first website in raw HTML and know how to use FTP. But that just means I’m getting old I guess :).

2. Choosing a theme

The first thing we’ll do after installing WordPress on our domain is choosing a WordPress theme. There are couple things I look for in a theme.

Firstly it has to look clean. By that I mean I don’t want tons of columns, widgets and changing pictures. Of course this depends somewhat on the site and what it’s geared towards. But especially on a blog I want everything to be super clean and simplistic.

The reason for this is that simple and minimalistic themes load faster, which is increasingly important for ranking in searches engines. Simple layouts also work better in mobile devices. They generally show the reader only the main column content and a simplified menu. That’s why you want anything worth reading be in there.

Secondly, a theme has to be modular. By this I mean I have to be able change the header and footer layouts, the widgets, colors and fonts. The reason for this is that changing a specific part of your website layout can be a real pain in the ass. You don’t always get that with free themes but I prefer modularity when possible. Sure you can always edit the CSS but that requires extensive research and you risk losing your modifications on every theme update.

You can of course change your theme any time you wish in WordPress. There are some risks however and the larger your site gets the larger and more likely the risks get. Things like broken links and misplaced content are known to happen, so always back up your site before installing a new theme.

For my expired domain project I chose a theme called Shuttle Corporate by Shuttle Themes.

Shuttle corporate theme previewTo be honest I just browsed through the themes featured in Wealthy Affiliates website installer and went with this one as it seemed clean and pretty simplistic.

I’m not 100% sure with the direction of the site and this seemed like something that go with a simple blog or with more of a business/authority site.

Just as I’m writing this WordPress 5.0 rolled out and it has a completely new feature called box editor. It seems like something I could use to create a whole layout instead of a theme. I have to do some research and I promise to write more about it in the future!

3. Removing test post and page

WordPress publishes a test page and a test post when first installed. It goes without saying these add no value to your website, so remove them. You can find them – not surprisingly – under the posts and pages tabs in your WordPress interface.

Removing test post and page in Wordprss

You then just hover over them with your mouse and choose Trash. And it’s done just like that! Now repeat on the post/page.

4. Installing Plug-ins

Next it’s time to install some important plug ins. These are the ones I know I’ll need on every site and install them straight away. I use other and without a doubt you will as well. Just be aware some plug-ins can slow your website down and just having too many in general is a bad thing.

You need to go to the Plugins tab in your WordPress interface and click on the ‘Add new‘ and search for each plugin manually.

The plugins I install on a fresh WordPress are:

  • All in one SEO Pack, an SEO optimization tool. This one is important and comes pre-installed on every WA WordPress site.
  • Comment link Remove, This removes the links from comments people leave on your posts. After reading a lot about backlinks I’m convinced you shouldn’t have any unintentional outward links on your site even if they are NoFollow. Different themes handle the comment section differently so this plugin is great for making sure your comments aren’t spammed with unwanted links.
  • Cookie Notice This plug-in shows a small popup banner that notifies users about cookies. It’s function is to makes sure your site complies with the UK and EU Cookie and GDPR regulations.
  • EWWW Image Optimizer Compresses images without losing quality. Very important for fast load times, which is an important ranking factor.
  • Pretty links Helps to mask long and nasty looking affiliate links.
  • WP GDPR Compliance, Like cookie notice, this one is required because of the EU GDPR regulations. Asks a permission to store comment contact details. Also, makes it possible for users to request any data stored about them.

 

Wordpress plugins on a fresh install

You can spot from the above screenshot there are couple other plug-ins installed, like Redirection and YouTube. These are something I might use on that site but they are not something you have to have installed.

Redirection is great for redirecting moved content as Google doesn’t like 404 errors. The YouTube plugin gives some options to your standard WordPress video embed features.

Finally, you will need to activate all the plugins. You can do it individually on every plugin or just activate everything and update as a bulk action.

5. Set up All-in-one SEO

So now that we have our plugins installed, it’s time to set up All in one SEO. Go to the All in one SEO general settings page.

All in one SEO general settings

For now, we are going to leave everything as is, except for two things. We are going to add a home title and a home description. These are important because they are essentially your calling card in the eyes of the search engines and their users. So make a snappy home title and describe what your site is about in couple short sentences. Try to make it intriguing.

all in one seo home page settings

The other item we are going to edit is the Keyword settings. Just enable it and let it do it’s magic. No need to edit other attributes here.

all in one seo keyword settings

 

6. Set up GDPR Compliance plugin

Next I will setup the GDPR Compliance plugin. This one won’t affect your rankings but it’s important from a legal perspective. The GDPR regulations of the European Union dictate all websites that have users from within the EU to inform what user data is being gathered and stored, how that data is being stored and contact information for removal of said data.

The GDPR legislation is meant to offer protection of personal data and privacy. It has caused a lot of hassle to all businesses in the EU but the goal behind is noble. Think of it what you will, but if you have visitors on your website from within the EU, you need to have this setup to have all your bases covered from a legal standpoint.

The other option is to blog traffic from EU but that would be stupid as that’s a good third of internet users who seek information in English.

Setting up the plugin is pretty straight forward. Just go to your installed plugins and scroll down to the GDPR compliance plugin and click settings.

WP GDPR compliance settings

Activate the WordPress comments fields. This will ask any comment for a permission to store their contact information.

Next go to the Settings tab and activate the Request User Data page. It will create a page called Data Access Request. You will find it under your pages section, it will not be visible by default so go to the page and change the visibility to public.

GDPR request user data

That’s it for the GDPR!

7. Set up the Comment link remove plugin

Finally we will setup the Comment link remove plugin. Like I said before this is important for controlling the outward links of your website that could lead to negative SEO results.

If you use a theme that allows to remove the comment link option you might not need this. On the other hand if you decide to change your theme later on you might activate the comment links by accident and this plugin would take care of that.

If you already have a site with comments, you can use this plugin to remove the links from them as well.

Remove comment link plugin settings

Go to the QC CLR settings tab in your WordPress interface and in the General Settings choose

  • Remove WEBSITE field from comment form
  • Remove hyper-link from comment AUTHOR bio
  • Disable turning URLs into hyperlinks in comments
  • Remove HTML comments globally
              •  

There’s no need to touch the other settings. Save changes and you’re good to go!

You’re good to go!

The rest of the plugins I introduced in this post don’t need settings changed for now besides being activated. You can edit their settings as you see proper when you learn more about this stuff and have a better vision about your website and content.

That’s it with the basic settings and plugins! Now it’s time to start creating some incredible content. You should start with creating a Privacy Policy and an about me page like shown in the Wealthy Affiliate training.

The first level of the training is completely free by the way and full of great information. You just need to create an account, they don’t even ask for your credit card so there are no strings attached.

I’ll continue by creating some content on my expired domain and I still have my Keyword Golden Ratio project to work on as well. I wonder where I’ll find the time to run all three websites :). So wish me luck and check back soon for updates!

P.S. I’m sure I left some important stuff and steps out so don’t hesitate to ask on the comments section below. I promise to answer as soon as possible!

 

 

 

 

Should you buy and expired domain for traffic

Should you buy an expired domain for traffic?

As I’m waiting for my keyword golden ratio niche website to start ranking in the SERPs I’ve been reading about expired domains. The question in my mind is, should you buy expired domain for traffic advantage? Let’s find out.

One of the oldest tricks in the book in online marketing has been acquiring expired domains with powerful backlink profiles. The idea is to leverage the “link juice” and domain authority for building a new money site or acquiring several of such domains to build a private blog network (PBN for short).

The idea behind a PBN is to point powerful backlinks to your existing money site with complete control over things like anchor text. This is considered a gray hat/black hat technique by Google and will certainly lead in severe penalty or complete sandbox and deindexing if you get caught. And this can include every domain in the network.

PBNs aren't safe

That’s why I have no interest in using expired domains for building a PBN and I can’t encourage anyone else to do it either. I just wanted you to know this is one of the most common ways to use expired domains and you are bound to bump into information and marketing about PBNs if you look more into expired domains.

So once more, just so we’re clear: Private blog networks are highly frowned upon by Google and you should not risk using them. Still, many experienced marketers swear they are the way to go if you want to dominate the first page rankings. But if you hear about PBNs for the first time right now, you are definitely in the position to leverage them safely.

I’m still at the beginning of my online marketing journey and someone with more experience might be face palming hardly right now for me even thinking about using expired domains for SEO and traffic advantage in 2018. My research shows the topic is highly controversial even between very experienced marketers these days.

Some say that a deleted domain loses all its link juice as Google disavows any incoming link once the domain expires. Some say this is simply not true and that expired or dropped domains work just as well as before and give you an enormous advantage in building a new site versus on a fresh domain. Especially now as the time it takes for new sites to acquire trust and start ranking in Google seems to be getting longer and longer.

I like to do my research, but when my research is inconclusive I like to take things to my own hands, do some research and testing of my own to find out how things work. That’s what I intend to do with expired domains and I promise to share my results with you!

Let’s start by looking at what expired domains actually are.

What are expired domains

Just like the name suggests, expired domains are domains that have been expired. Meaning that they had been registered before but the owner decided to let the domain expire and did not renew the registration.

Should you buy an expired domain for traffic?

The reasons for this are many. Maybe a company that owned the domain went bankrupt, maybe someone got tired with blogging or simply didn’t have time and decided to let it go.

Some times a domain can get expired simply because the owner forgot to renew it. Even though that’s unlikely since the owner will receive several notifications and most registrars will keep the domain in backorder for a month or two to give the original owner a chance to redeem his/hers property.

This still happens when people and companies have so much online property and limited time to process all the daily information they receive from those properties. Make sure that you are not one of these people and always keep your domain registrar contact information updated.

 

TIP: It’s generally a good idea to use your best personal email to receive domain expiration notifications straight to your smart phone.

There are some more worrisome reasons that someone looking to acquire an expired domain should know. The domain might be a part of a previous shady activity and it might already be deindexed. The owner simply let it go because it has lost it’s monetary and SEO value.

This is why it’s extremely important to check the history of a domain even if you are not especially looking for an expired domain. If you just come up with a good domain name and it happens to be free, the chances are high that it was registered at some point.

There are tools like Wayback Machine that have snap shots of the domain dating all the way back to the 90s. You can usually spot a spammy site easily.

The other thing you should check is the backlinks of the domain. If there are thousands on a free expired domain, I would steer clear. It’s a clear signal that the domain was subject of artificial link building that can lead to penalty.

If an old domain has several thousand high quality, natural backlinks it’s probably too valuable for anyone to let it just expire for free.

Just the fact that the domain was used before doesn’t make it worthless (or worthy) it depends on what it was used for. So don’t panic if you find your domain was used 10 or 15 years ago.

Why use expired domains

Backlinks

The idea in using expired domains is that they can have significant domain authority and good backlink profiles. Some old domains can have some very high authority backlinks from large companies, archives or news sites. In case you didn’t know backlinks are links pointing to your domain.

It’s not clear how much Google and other search engines value backlinks these days. Some say recent algorithm changes have dropped the value of backlinks close to zero and it’s the on-page SEO, quality of content, social signals etc. that matter the most.

Yet there are some very experienced and successful SEOs and marketers that swear backlinks still matter the most. They have some pretty damn convincing data to back that claim too.

One thing that is sure is that it’s the quality of the backlinks that matter. Wrong kinds of backlinks will hurt your rankings and the right kinds can pull a page from the bottom of the top 100 search results to the first page.

This becomes obvious if you do some research on backlink profiles of first page search results in competitive keywords.

Previously all backlinks provided “link juice” to your domain/site but since it was extremely easy to manipulate this with artificial backlinks they changed it so that only more authoritative domains related to your niche will give your rank a boost. The anchor texts of the links also have to be natural and not keyword stuffed.

This is why PBNs can be so powerful but since the whole point of devaluing unrelated backlinks was to stop artificial manipulation, Google doesn’t like any kind of artificial link building.

So ideally the backlinks should be naturally received from more authoritative domains related to your niche. The problem is this never happens naturally. Especially on a young site, unless the content as absolutely phenomenal. That’s why gaining backlinks always involves some effort, time and sometimes money.

Domain age

Domain age affects how much trust search engines give trust to the website. A domain that has been registered and had a website hosted on it for ten years will obviously be trusted a lot more then three months old website.

The problem here is that the domain age apparently resets to zero when a website gets deleted or the domain expires. That’s at least the official story but I have read some experiences that suggest otherwise. Some people seem to have had considerable ranking advantage on a recently expired domain that had a website for several years before. This might be due to backlinks and returning visitors but it still makes you wonder.

You can find great brandable domains and niche ideas

One reason I love to go through expired domains is that you can find some great brandable domains you wouldn’t come up with yourself. The fact that there are hundreds of thousands of domains to choose from means you won’t run out of ideas very soon.

Talking about ideas, expired domains are also great from niche ideas and research. I’ve come up with some pretty interesting niches that I would have not come up on my own in a million years.

Where to find expired domains

There essentially three ways to acquire an expired domain. You can buy one directly or from an auction before expiration, you can backorder one or you can simply buy one for the normal registration fee if it’s completely expired.

The ones in direct sale or auction are not really expired since they many times have a website on them but sometimes it’s just the domain. Either way it’s still owned by someone and not really expired. These can be very valuable and I thought I should mention them. They are not what I’m after right now.

The ones that are in backorder are expired domains that the original owner has a change to redeem. If they decide not to get it back the fastest buyer can grap the domain.

The thing about backorders is that it can be pretty hit or miss. You can’t know when the domain will free up for registration and the fastest will grap it. That’s why there are services that are specialized in this. They have automated software on fast servers that keep at it at the time of expiration. You can’t really compete with them manually apparently so it’s wise to use them if you really want a domain in backorder.

So where to look for expired domains?

The best free resource is Expired Domains.net. They gather and publish all the information you need for finding good expired domains. They list expired, pending delete and backorder domains.

Their membership is completely free so I suggest you register right away because you will get access to a lot more comprehensive listing with more metrics for analyzing the results.

There are other services like DomCop and Freshdrop. For free services Expired Domains.net is by far the most comprehensive. You get so much information that you have to start by learning what everything in the result table means. Sure there are short explanations on every metric but if you are a new to this stuff, expect to do some Googling.

I plan to write a post soon on the most important metrics as there really is too much stuff to discuss for this one post.

My test

So do they really work? When in doubt, the best way is to try it yourself and learn from the process! That’s why I decided to get an expired domain with a decent link profile and build a WordPress site on it.

I’ll be documenting my results here and I will share them with you later on so make sure to check on me from time to time!

Like stated before, I’m not interested in PBNs for the quite obvious risks and possible future penalties, so my aim is to just build a pretty basic niche website and see if the history of the site has effect on the ranking speed and position.

I will be aiming for low competition and KGR keywords and it will be interesting to see if this site gains traffic faster then my other niche website I’m using to test the KGR terms.

The domain is actually in my professional niche of environmental sciences, so I have some pretty good ideas for content and I’m fairly confident I can bang out a dozen medium length, high quality posts fairly quickly.

My plan is to publish the content in the coming weeks and then I’ll just let the website sit for a while and hopefully start to pick up some organic traffic. At that point I might outsource some of the content creation efforts since I feel I’m spreading my resources too thin with three websites at the moment.

I can’t justify paying for content creation just yet since my online business is not bringing in enough money to have me convinced it’s going to work on the long run. It’s something I’ll definitely look into once I have a steady online income.

I plan to reinvest every dime I make online for the foreseeable future. Either in content, education or software and marketing. I figure this will grow my business at a much faster rate then doing everything manually. But I have to know I can do it on my own first!

Do they still work?

That’s what I aim to find out. I will update this part once I have some data on the results. For now, I will show how I found a domain for my first test site.

I began by just scrolling the domains list until something sparked my interest. I stumbled upon something to do with the environment or maybe renewable energy, can’t really remember exactly. As I mentioned I’m an environmental engineer by profession so this got my interest.

I decided to do a search on the term environment.

Environment keyword results

I then sorted the results by the ABY metric, which is the oldest date in archive.org and exported the domain listing 25 results at a time through the import function. I wish there was a function to import the whole table or at least a few hundred ones but I didn’t fin one?

Import function

I then pasted the results to DomCops Open PageRank tool. Google gave up the PageRank data in 2016 and since then it’s been hard for webmasters and SEOs to compare domains efficiently for free. They have had to use paid services like Moz, Ahrefs and Majestic.

Open PageRank is free and can give a quick gauge on the potential of a domain. It’s a great tool for comparing large volumes of domains like we have here to find the most potential ones. You still need to do some more work but this helps to narrow it down. Or that is my logic at least, can’t really vouch for this just yet but feel free to try it yourself.

You can just copy paste the exported data from Expired Domains.net to Open PageRank.

Open pagerank import

I then list the results by PageRank and pick the ones that have PR of 3 or more. After going through hundred or thousands of domains I noticed that finding dropped domains with PR over 3 was rare and finding ones with PR over 4 and a healthy backlink profile and history was exceedingly rare. The ones with higher PR are probably too valuable for anyone to let them expire.

PageRank results

Once I had a bunch of “high” PR domains I looked at the amount of backlinks they had. ExpiredDomains.net shows this info as well. If the domain had several thousand backlinks I ditched it. It’s highly unlikely the link profile would be natural and there’s no way of easily checking all the links for free. Several hundred backlinks was a no no as well, especially on younger domains.

I found a good domain name that was registered around 2000 initially. It had only 16 backlinks and a clean looking history. I made sure of this by checking it with the WaybackMachine. It belonged to a small American environmental consulting company and the site had mainly contact information.

What really struck gold was the backlinks. 3 of the 16 links were from pretty damn authoritative domains with the domain name as anchor text. Two of the high value ones were dofollow links as well. I checked the backlinks manually with Ahrefs free backlink checker.

After thinking about it for a minute I decided to register the domain and install wordpress on it. I’ll start creating content on it as soon as I get this post finished, so I think it’s time to call it a day!

Conclusion

Well that’s it for now about expired domains. I hope to have some interesting info to share with you sometime in the future.

Thanks for reading if you made it this far. I bet you have a bunch of questions after my ramblings so please don’t hesitate to drop a comment, I promise to get back to you as soon as possible.

I will be updating this post once I have some results or more info to share. Might be three months or might be a week so please bookmark for future reference! I promise to add an email list soon to anyone interested receiving updates.

For now that’s all!

 

 

 

 

Wealthy Affiliate Black Friday deal if you are already a yearly member?

It’s that time of the year again, Black Friday is here! If you are a Wealthy Affiliate member you will know there has been a great Black Friday deal almost every year.

But how about the Wealthy Affiliate Black Friday deal if you are already a yearly member? Are you paying for nothing? Well no. The offer is just as good as if are a free or monthly member.

If you are not a yearly membership yet and are already familiar with Wealthy Affiliate the time to take action is now!

The offer is only runs runs between November 23rd, 2018 (Friday), through November 26th (Monday). So act now and click the link below!

>TAKE ME TO THE DEAL<

 

If you are not familiar with Wealthy Affiliate or the yearly membership let’s look at how it works!

What is the Wealthy Affiliate black Friday deal?

 

Wealthy Affiliate Black Friday deal if you are already a yearly member?

The Wealthy Affiliate black Friday deal is a special offer on the yearly membership of Wealthy Affiliate. Wealthy Affiliate is an all-in-one online platform for affiliate marketer.

They teach you how to create an online business using the content creation and affiliate marketing principles. It essentially involves creating a website or several websites in specific niches, creating content around that niche on low competition keywords to gain organic traffic through search engines.

You then market relevant offers in that niche to using affiliate links. If a reader of your website/blog clicks that link and makes a purchase you will receive an affiliate fee. Simple as that, check the previous link for more info.

What’s included in the Premium offer?

The yearly membership has everything listed in the table below under the monthly Premium membership below.

 

The Black Friday special offer will include some bonuses as well. Kyle has hinted there will be some great improvements this year on the platform and there are at least four bonuses included on the special deal:

  • A “Secret Sauce” live class with Kyle
  • Something called the Secret Sauce, White Paper (not really sure what this is, probably a cheat sheet of the live class)
  • 5 weeks of live training about creating a niche website in 2019, this is not included in your normal training.
  • A beta access to a new are for yearly members, not surprisingly called Yearly Members.

 

What if I’m already a yearly member?

If you are already a yearly member at Wealthy Affiliate when you purchase the Black Friday offer, you will pay the $299 and add an entire year to your membership.

So if you for example paid your yearly membership fee this July, the Black Friday offer will continue you yearly membership to July of the next year.

How about an existing monthly member?

If you are a monthly member you will be pro-rated on your monthly billing cycle. Meaning they will reimburse for what ever you have left of your monthly payment during the time of the yearly membership purchase.

So you won’t lose any money, that’s the important part.

Not sure yet?

Check out this post by Kyle for more info on what’s to come and why you should really take advantage of this incredible offer!

I don’t have time to write more about this right now and the counter on the offer starting is just an hour away and I want to share this offer with you as early as possible!

If you have any questions this post or Kyles post didn’t answer, please don’t hesitate to ask! I will get back to you as soon as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is the point of working all your life?

What is the point of working all your life?

Feeling stressed? Feeling burned out? Wondering what is the point of working all your life? I really don’t think there is point in working all your whole life so let’s look at what you can do about it!

Here’s the thing. People these days are stressed with working life. This is a fact. They are also stressed with life in general. There are several reasons for this that I will get on to shortly but it’s painfully obvious that working life is putting a big strain on most peoples life when you talk to people.

Sure there are people who absolutely love their jobs. They usually work in a field that is their passion and they dedicate their lives to their careers. That is one of the big choices you have to make in life if you don’t want to feel like working your life away. Dedication to career. There simply isn’t enough time to have a fulfilling, full-time career (not just a job), a family and time intensive satisfying hobbies.

Sure they can be managed simultaneously to some extent, but something is going to wind up half-assed. Think of the stereotypical family with a stay-at-home mom and a distant father that only comes home from the office to eat his dinner and sleep (these days the roles can obviously be switched, but you get the example).

The father might actually love his career, but this kind of situation will without a doubt lead to resentment from the wife and the kids towards the father. In the best case scenario the stay-at-home parent is happy with the situation and there won’t too much resentment between the parents but either way they both have to compromise between career and family.

Now if both parents go to work (in jobs they don’t like) when the kids are young and try to have hobbies of their own somethings gotta give. Either the parents find a way to compromise or they end up splitting up due to resentment. The tragedy is that this can lead to even more stress as you now likely have a shared custody situation which makes planning life that more difficult. Especially when the new partners come into the picture.

But I digress. Let’s look at some of the reasons and factors why people hate working these days so much to figure out if there’s actually any point in working your whole life.

The demands of work

The reason most people can’t truly enjoy their careers is that the working life is too demanding to have a balanced life without stress.

Even if you like the field you are in, the working hours probably take most of your day, leaving you only few hours to have quality time doing what ever it is you love doing. That is, if you have the energy.

Studies show that over working is more common and even expected in many positions these days. Also, digitalization has lead to a situation where many employees are expected to answer emails and calls with their smart phones even from their home, outside office hours. Especially if they are looking to move forward in their career.

Work is too demanding in general. It’s very common there is too little time to complete all the tasks required by your job. Many positions are not filled when an employee retires and the tasks are assigned to other employees due to financial reasons.

Introduction of the work and workplace to new employees in many companies is either nonexistent or inhumanely short. This can lead to extreme stress even on the most diligent worker. Studies show that it takes on average three to six months to get accustomed to a new job. Sometimes even longer if the job is exceptionally demanding and complicated.

What is the point of working all your life?

If you are not given enough adjustment time, this can lead to extreme stress and sub par performance which can unfortunately lead to getting fired. In the worst case scenario you might end up with a burn out.

Working hours are also too long. The average American works about 40 hours per week, as does most Europeans. This is the typical 8-hour working day on week days. The problem with these averages is that they don’t take in to account all the overtime people put in on their spare time without compensation.

Of course there are also people working 50, 60 or 70 hours a week. And the sad part is many of them do this at two (some even three) different jobs and still barely make by since the minimum wage these days is not enough to live or raise a family.

To most people even 40 hours is simply too much work to truly enjoy life. It means you have to give up on something important to you and choose to rest every now and then. A six-hour work day or four day work week of around 30 hours would be much more humane in many fields.

But wouldn’t that lead to decrease in productivity? Actually, in experiments conducted in Sweden, they found out that shorter work week actually yielded superior productivity in jobs requiring lots of thinking and creativity. The obvious reason for this is the fact that thinking and creativity are highly dependent on motivation and low fatigue.So in intellectual work (which most positions are these days) more hours don’t equal better results and productivity.

In many countries the holidays are very short. I remember reading that the average American has about two weeks completely of from work each year. Here in Finland we have around 5 weeks, which still feels too little most of the time. It’s OK for the summer but in all honesty you should have a week off every couple months to keep your sanity.

Holidays are short in many countries

Combining work and family can be tough. Especially in situations where both parents are career oriented. If both parents are working long days, the family life can get very stressful very fast. Both parents will have to pretty much accept the situation and compromise by giving up most of their leisure activities.

It’s no wonder divorce is very common these days, especially after having children. It’s also natural for every adult to strive for financial security on their own. This requires work experience and you can’t really have long absence from work in your resume if you wish to attract the interest of employers.

All I do is work and sleep

I got the idea to write this post from the fact that recently I have felt is all that I do is work and sleep. And maybe catch some chow every now and the.

I’m still working full time in a rather demanding specialist position while I’m reading and learning everything I can about SEO, marketing and the whole online business in general. Naturally I’m also putting what I read into action by working on this website and couple other ones.

This has led me to feel all I do is work and sleep. It has also led me to lose productivity both in my day job and in my online business. I simply don’t have the resources to keep working 100% on both all the time.

The whole reason I started this whole online endeavor was to eventually work less. Not to quit working, but to work less. I truly feel like there is no point in working your whole life for somebody else, especially if it takes most of your time and energy.

I hope in few months I’ll be able to either quit my day job or at least do it part-time (if my employer allows is). I accept this is a transition period that’s going to require hard work without instant gratification. I will not give up, that’s the one thing I’m good at, but I will have to be honest with myself and accept it’s going to be thought to work two jobs effectively.

The thing is, we are individuals. Our stress coping skills, activity levels, passions and life goals differ vastly. What is the perfect fulfillment of every life goal to one person is the other persons absolute hell.

It’s just stupid how most people try to force them into the same mold that is seen as the golden standard by the society even though there are more options available in the free world than ever.

 

 

From a societal point of view it would be perfect if you had a decent pay check, so you can pay your taxes and keep the economy running by consuming all sorts of crap and useless commodities you think you need, because someone said so.

It would also be perfect if you had a few kids because in most western societies there are more old people and not enough young people and children to take care of them by paying taxes or direct fees to companies that run old folks’ homes and hospital. Since, as you know, that’s where old people end up these days when they can’t function on their own anymore.

And it would be perfect you worked as long as possible as hard as possible, since any down time will make you a burden to the society.

People want to fulfill their true passions through hobbies if their career and family isn’t what they truly strive for and love to do. There just isn’t time. Things like pets, music, sports, gaming, creating online businesses etc. can be very time-consuming.

The problem is that if you don’t have the time to do your true passions you will end up feeling resenting all parts of your life.

The stereotypical example would be a person who works a full time job in a profession that doesn’t give him/real satisfaction and decides to have children against his/hers own true desire out of social pressure from the spouse, family and the society in general.

Then the person has to give up on their true passions in exchange of things seen as chores. Sure, you can grow to like or even love the situation but let’s be honest, we all know people who are barely clinging to sanity in a situation like this. This might even be you.

These kinds of situations are where divorces and mid-life crisis’ live.

You have to do something

I sometimes (OK, constantly) fantasize about winning the lottery and quitting my job and my online business and even cutting out all my existing ties and responsibilities, just to chill out and relax. Deep down I know this would be very bad for my confidence, health, relationships and to everything that really matters in life.

You see, the thing is, you have to do something. You need a purpose to get out of the bed and get going. The problem is that to many, going to work isn’t a meaningful purpose. It doesn’t give the sense of accomplishment and joy that working on something you love can give you.

Procrastinating your life away is really not the answer. Just ask any depressed young man stuck in their home in front of a computer wasting their life away.

The obvious reason for most people for working their whole adult life is quite simply financial necessity. You have to pay the bills and eat something after all.

Alternative to working 9 to 5

Unless you have the potential to become a rocks star or the next Elon Musk I suggest you find an alternative to the 9 to 5 rat race as soon as possible. I’m sure you are not interested in working your life away for somebody else since you are reading this article.

Information technology is the career of the future. The money is in the internet. There are few ways you can learn to leverage the internet to earn an income.

You can become a YouTube content creator. You can learn how use crypto currencies to make money. You can offer writing services to bloggers and magazine.

The thing is that all those require active work pretty much constantly. I strive for somewhat passive income. There isn’t such thing as truly passive income, but there are differences in how much you need to invest time for maintenance.

For example in YouTube constant fresh content can make or break a channel. You have to keep in the feed or you will lose views and rankings.

That’s why I chose SEO (Search Engine Optimization) based content creation/blogging combined with affiliate marketing as the business model for my online business.

If you got interested in the alternatives to working a typical 9 to 5 career or full time in general, check out my Niche website journal, my Wealthy Affiliate review and this post about internet marketing as a career.

 

 

Conclusion

So what is the point of working all your life? There isn’t one. The point of life is to help others and enjoy the world without causing harm to other people, animals or the planet. If your job isn’t true to these goals there really isn’t any point in working all your life.

Doing nothing isn’t the answer either, so find something you love and helps other people and work hard on it. That’s the point of working all your life. It just won’t feel like working.

If you have any questions or just need some friendly advice, don’t hesitate to drop a comment. I answer every single comment I get.

Till the next time!

How to register your site in Google

How to register your site in Google

Today I want to share this quick tutorial on how to register your site in Google to anyone new to running a website. I’ve been creating a niche website that‘ve been documenting here on IHateWorking.net.

I made an amateur mistake in not registering my site with Google search console, I simply forgot. That resulted in most of my content not being indexed and ranked after several months.

After registering my site with Google and submitting my sitemap everything clicked on to place and my content started ranking in Google.

The thing is I already knew how important it is to add your website or property to search console because I have couple other sites (like this one). There are just so many small things involved in starting a new website it’s pretty easy to miss a step if you don’t use some sort of check list.

This mistake happened to be a big one. Fortunately the site is still very incomplete, so it wasn’t that big of a deal.

There are almost 400 pages created on the internet every minute. That’s why it’s impossible for Google and other search engines to keep track and index all those sites instantly. So it’s up to you, the webmaster, to do your best attract the attention of the search engines.

In short, registering your website with Google by submitting your up-to-date sitemap to Google search console will ensure that Google has all the information it needs to rank your website and pages in their search results.

Let’s start by looking at what Google search console actually is.

What is Google search console

What used to be called Google Webmaster tools is now known as the Google search console. The Google search console is a free service provided by Google. It allows you to track and administer your websites Google search result visibility.

Your site will be shown in Google results even if you don’t use search console but it takes a lot longer to get indexed. Especially on young sites.

Other benefits of using search console is that you will know that Google sees your content the way it’s meant to be. So sites that are supposed to be indexed are done so correctly and the sites you don’t want to have indexed aren’t shown in search results.

It also allows you monitor your site health for broken links, other errors and things like mobile functionality of your site. Google doesn’t like errors so anything that shows up should be addressed as it will in all likelihood affect your ranking negatively.

Other important features are related to how Google search sees your site. You can get information on what search queries or keywords are producing traffic to your site, are some keywords producing more traffic than others, backlinks pointing to your website etc. Great stuff for SEO.

As promised, next I’ll show you a quick tutorial on how to set up your website with Google search console.

How to register your site with search console

1. Create a Google account

This is pretty straight forward, I’m sure you already have one. If you already have one associated with your website for example in Google Analytics, use the same. This way you don’t have to verify the property several times and you have everything under the same account.

Create a Google account

2. Login to Google search console

This is pretty self explanatory. Login using the Google account created in previous item.

3. Add your website as property

Once you are registered and logged in search console it’s time to add your website or sites as property that you own.

Open the property menu on the left upper hand corner:

Click add property (don’t mind the Finnish in some of the pics)

 

add property in Google search console

 

Add your website URL. It’s important to use the correct extension since http:// and https:// are regarded as different properties. Add all variations of your URL. Http, https, www. etc.

 

 

Add property url

4. Verify your property

Once you have added your site as property it’s time to verify it. There are few ways to do this as explained here.

I like to use the HTML tag. If you are using WordPress, just install All in one SEO plugin and copy the HTML tag generated in Search console to the field found in General Setting tab of All in one SEO.

5. Create an XML sitemap of your website

Now that you have search console set up, it’s time to head over to your websites admin area and create an XML sitemap. If you are using WordPress I recommend using the All in one SEO plugin with the XML sitemap extension.

6. Fetch sitemap on search console

The all on one SEO pack should automatically update your sitemap with search console when everything is in working order. It’s wise to check at this point everything is working by manually fetching the sitemap on search console.

Select your website from the property list and click on the Sitemaps tab. The will be a field where you can enter the URL address of your sitemap. By default, it’s your website URL /sitemap.xml.

Enter sitemap url in search console

 

7. Check for errors

Once you have your sitemap set up it’s good to wait for couple of days for Google to index your whole site. Once that is complete you should check out the Coverage tab and Mobile Usability tab for any errors.

 

 

The coverage tab will show pages marked as ‘noindex’ as errors but you don’t have to worry about them if you have set the to noindex intentionally. If there are any errors you should figure them out.

Any errors on the Mobile Usability tab are also important to correct since Google gives increasingly more importance to mobile device experience. So make sure your website is smart phone friendly!

8. Done!

Congratulations! Your website is now registered with Google and you can check out interesting stuff on how your website is performing on Google search and what parts of your content are being linked to and producing impressions and clicks.

Enjoy!

How to get your web page to the top of google

So you have some great content and you want that content to rank on the first page of Google? That’s the whole point of SEO. Besides submitting your sitemap as shown in this post, there are some general guidelines to consider.

These are just quick tips I have shared before. After all this is a topic whole companies are based on and can’t be covered in any real detail in one post.

Write long high quality content.

The bare minimum these days for first page content is around 1500 words. Essentially the longer the content the better. This does not mean you should ramble about random stuff, it has to be related to the topic, valuable, interesting and compelling to the reader.

Easier said than done, believe me, I know.

Find low competition keywords

Especially, if your site is new/young (and I’m sure it is, since you are reading this), it’s important to focus on low competition keywords. You won’t stand a change in competitive keywords with a new site these days. So use your resources wisely.

Writing a high quality 3000 word information post on a low traffic keyword might seem nuts but think of it as an investment. Ranking those low competition keyword will result in traffic and website authority that will make it possible to compete for better keywords later on. It takes time to build a successful internet business.

Learn about SEO. Then learn some more.

Things like keyword density, LSI keywords, backlinks, page titles, meta descriptions etc. all matter when it comes to competing on the first spots of search results. It’s not rocket science, but it’s important to know this stuff if you want to succeed, so educate yourself!

If you do everything “correctly” SEO wise, write some excellent piece of content on a relatively low competition keyword and manage to get few backlinks there’s no reason why shouldn’t be on the first page of Google with your keyword.

Don’t over think the SEO. Write naturally and make sure the critical parts are OK, search engines will take care of the rest.

What ever you do, don’t pay for backlinks or automated SEO software (I don’t mean keyword research tools etc.) These are almost always shady and can potentially get your rankings or even get your site sandboxed.

Things you should include in your content, when possible:

  • Keyword in: meta title and meta description, permalink, one picture name and alt description.
  • Keyword at least once in content. Never over stuffed in the content, write naturally
  • Internal links pointing to other content on your site
  • External links pointing to authority sites
  • Embedded relevant YouTube video
  • Share content in Google Plus

In short Google likes it when you use their services like YouTube and Google+ and likes when content follows their guidelines.

Conclusion

There you have it. A quick tutorial on how to register your website with Google by registering with Search Console and submitting a sitemap.

Hope you liked the tutorial and the quick SEO tips. Please drop a comment if you have any questions. I’ll be posting an update on my niche site journal soon, so please check that out as well if you find my ramblings useful.

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

How to create a niche website in 2018

How to build a profitable niche website in 2018 – Project journal

Update 29/10/2018

More time has passed since the last update than I’d like to admit. I’ve been busy with other commitments and we just got a dog! While exciting, it’s definitely not progressing my internet business.

I’ve actually been trying to publish this update for two weeks already and I keep changing the date constantly as I never seem to have the time and energy to finish what I started.

I haven’t managed to create new content for the niche website, so I’m going to keep this update short. I have not been procrastinating completely though. I overhauled the layout of the site and updated every single post with some SEO stuff I’ll explain shortly. I managed to create some content for this site as well.

I also fixed a big mistake that was detrimental for my content getting ranked. I had forgotten to submit my site to Google Search Console. I wrote a whole post about it, that you should probably read if you’re not familiar with Search Console.

I got the SEO tips and the reminder to submit my sitemap to Search Console from this great training at Wealthy Affiliate. I actually did every single step pointed out in that training to all posts on my niche website. More about that later on.

Site layout

I think I mentioned before the site was looking very rough with essentially just written content and not much thought put in to the layout. I just focused getting content on the site. Layout is more important to user experience than getting indexed.

That’s why I think it’s important to focus more on the content in the beginning of a new site and focus on the appearance once you start receiving traffic. Search engine spiders don’t care if your site is ugly if everything is working correctly otherwise.

Not that much has changed compared to the previous layout really, but I changed the theme to something even more basic and got rid of the extremely amateur header graphics.

I also got rid of all redundant menus and widgets. The layout is now very simplistic, which I prefer. Simple themes load fast, work well with mobile devices and look modern. I think the whole Internet has shifted towards more content centered layouts. When you browse a site with your smart phone, all out see is the content text after all.

Niche website layout

You don’t need fancy backgrounds or animations if your content is interesting. Things like pictures, diagrams and videos are important but they need to be clear cut and sit well with the content.

More and more users are using the Internet on smart phones and usually the mobile layouts won’t even show animations or all menus and widgets. So the less stuff you have on the screen outside of your content the better I think. This makes the desktop and mobile experience similar and you can be sure your mobile visitors won’t miss anything important.

Since Google is giving more importance to mobile device experience these days I think a simple design is the way to go. I personally hate sites with too much distracting information on the screen

SEO Stuff

So as I told you in the introduction I did some SEO optimization on all my posts. I read about these tips in this training at Wealthy Affiliate. If you are not a Wealthy Affiliate member you can create a trial account without even registering a credit card. I’m not 100% sure if you can access the training with a trial account though.

I definitely recommend you check the free trial and Wealthy Affiliate out anyway. You can read my review of the service here. I would appreciate you drop a comment if you can’t access the training, so I can provide correct information to other readers.

In case you can’t access the training, it’s about ranking your new content as fast as possible. The training is called “21 minute ranking method” as a reference how fast content got ranked in Google after indexing on the example site. The results will vary a lot depending on the age, rank and authority of your site but the principles will be the same.

21 minute ranking method

Here are the main SEO points of the training, that affect the ranking of your post or page in Google after indexing:

  1. Include keyword in the meta title
  2. Include keyword in the meta description
  3. Mention the exact keyword in content at least once
  4. Mention the keyword in one image alt tag
  5. Include related internal links to your other posts/pages
  6. Include related external links to authority sites
  7. Embed a related YouTube video

Once you have included those everything on the list on your content you should share the content in Google+ using the meta title and description. Google likes it when you use their services.

After that you should resubmit your sitemap in Google Search Console to signal Google you have fresh content that needs to get indexed.

The last tip is to get some interaction on your site in the form of comments. You can accomplish this by leveraging social media or using Wealthy Affiliates comments services if you don’t have a solid reader base already. Google appreciates reader engagement and comments add to the word count of your post/page.

That’s about all the details I can give you. For more details you have to check out the training yourself, it’s definitely worth a watch.

What’s next?

I have also done some keyword research and I have one great keyword lined up for the airsoft niche site. I plan on writing a post on it as soon as I get this update wrapped up.

I’m not sure how long it takes to post another update. 3 weeks is starting to seem like a realistic time window. I hope that some time in the near future I will have some traffic data to share.

Currently many of niche website posts are ranking in Google somewhere around page 5 or so, so it’s going to take some time to get those rankings up. Wish me luck!

As a closing I would like to share this KGR related keyword research video tutorial by Doug Cunnington:

Till the next time!

If you wish to follow my journey please bookmark my site and follow me on Google+ and Twitter to receive all the updates!

Update 30/9/2018

So having a full time day job, chores, hobbies and other commitments AND trying to write two different blogs and doing research has turned out to be quite a handful. Who would have thought… I can’t even skimp on sleep because I become totally useless when sleep deprived.

I had to deal with reality and accept the fact that I need some downtime as well. I can’t be doing something productive CONSTANTLY. As I just started to finish up this post, I realized two weeks have passed since I last had the time and will to work on it. Oh well, that’s life I guess.

How to build a profitable niche website

I know there are a lot of people pitching constant productivity as something you should strive for in life. But I say fuck that, you have to live a little every now and then!

The bad thing is that I can’t fully enjoy my down time (watching Netflix, going for a beer with friends etc.) when I know there are things to be done. Fortunately I have made some progress and I apologize for this random rant. Just had to get it off my chest somewhere and this is my site after all, you know? But let’s get to the point!

So it’s taken me a bit more time to get new content on my niche project site than I anticipated. The good news is that I found some good KGR terms! And what’s even better is that most terms are so called “buyers keywords” and I found good products to market. One problem is that everything isn’t from Amazon and at least one of the vendors doesn’t seem to have an affiliate program. Might have to contact them separately and see if there are any options.

Since my last update I’ve manged to release three posts. I was planning to write couple posts, get some comments going and make this update well over two weeks ago, but it seems time is working against me.

In my defense the first post is over 3000 words and the two other around 2000 words and all took quite a bit of research. It really slows the writing process when you have bounce between Wikipedia and Amazon pages and try to come up with your reworded version of the information.

All-in-all I’m at my goal of one post / week. Someone might think this seems low, someone else might think it’s a lot. To me it’s just realism. If I can’t make this whole affiliate marketing thing work at this rate, It might not be the thing for me. I plan on keeping a steady pace however, as I figure long term consistency is the key, just like with everything else worth pursuing in life.

New posts on the niche site

So as I said before I found couple great KGR terms. I will share them with you in a second but would like to ask you something in return. Please don’t copy my information and try to rank for the same keywords.

I know this might be pointless to ask this on the internet but please take into count that I’m not making any real money yet. I’m sharing this to help others out.

The other reason why I ask this is that I don’t know if this KGR stuff really works and if many people start compete for the same term it might skew the results. So please keep this in mind as you read on and start doing your own keyword research.

So let’s get to the keywords and posts.

Best WW1 Airsoft Guns

I found the keyword for this using the Google autofill once again. I can’t remember where I got the idea to check for different eras in my airsoft niche. E.g. Vietnam war airsoft, ww2 airsoft, ww1 airsoft etc.

From those examples everything else was pretty competitive but to my surprise the term WW1 Airsoft guns had 90 local searches / month according to Keywords Everywhere. The allintitle results showed over 106 exact matches, so it wasn’t a KGR term.

However autofill suggested the term best WW1 airsoft guns which had zero monthly searches on Keywords Everywhere and Jaaxy but the fact remains that if Google suggests it, someone is looking for it.

The allintitle results showed three results, all easily outrankable. I also checked out the top results for the term WW1 airsoft guns and realized there were a lot of forum posts and I figured I could probably outrank most of them with decent amount of work. A quick recap of results is shown in the picture below. The funny looking language is Finnish in case you are wondering.

Best ww1 airsoft guns search results

So I created the post titled Best WW1 airsoft guns. The post ended up being around 3000 words long with several product suggestions and affiliate links. LSIGraph didn’t return that much useful LSI keywords so I just wrote naturally and I trust that Google will see the relevance of my keywords within the post.

It turned out a bit hard to find products to promote. I want to promote only products I know are high quality but WW1 replica airsoft guns are kinda rare to come by. I managed to find couple decent models from Amazon but everything else is from retailers that don’t have direct affiliate programs.

So I don’t really know how I might monetize the post better but I plan to worry about that only if the post starts to produce content. At this point it’s about pushing out fresh content on the KGR term to start getting rankings.

American made airsoft guns

The next term I wrote a post about was American made airsoft guns. It had zero local monthly searches on Keywords Everywhere but showed an Avg of 48 on Jaaxy. The term was once again brought up by Google auto-fill. The allintitle results turned out to be 4 results, all from forum posts. Should be easy to rank then.

I’m not sure how well the KG ratio works when using Jaaxys Avg monthly searches with the allintitle results. With the 48 Avg and 4 allintitle results the ratio is 0.083 which is well below the 0.250 upper limit so I might as well try, especially since the competition doesn’t seem that tough.

American made airsoft guns search results

Ended up writing a 2000 word post with several Amazon affiliate product links.

Blank guns for under $100

The next keyword was a bit different. I ventured out from my main niche to things that might be related somehow to the niche. After some random tries is stumbled upon a term blank guns for under 100. It showed average monthly search results of 140 in Keywords Everywhere and 32 Avg in Jaaxy.

By the way, I’m noticing a big discrepancy between Jaaxy and KE here. Just goes to show that keyword research tools give educated guesses, not absolute facts. They all have different ways of determining the search amounts so combining several sources is always a good idea.

The allintitle results showed 7 matches, that once again didn’t seem that tough to compete with. With the Keywords Everywhere monthly volume of 140 the ratio is 0.057.

Search results for the term blank guns for under 100

In case you don’t remember, anything below 0.250 is good to go. So this was pretty golden. A KGR term with actual traffic. That’s why I decided to make the article a bit longer from the get go. I plan on adding a lot of stuff if I start receiving traffic.

The initial article is around 2000 words but I faced the same problem as with the WW1 replica guns. I didn’t find any affiliate programs for blank guns since Amazon doesn’t sell them. If I start receiving traffic I have to try to figure something out. Now the products I recommend are legit but not through an affiliate program.

The other problem is that it’s not really a part of my main niche, which is airsoft. But I figured replica guns is a close enough term that Google might not see my site completely irrelevant. We’ll find out later on I guess. This keyword had the best KGR ratio and traffic so far, so I couldn’t pass the opportunity really.

That’s it for now! Stay tuned for updates. I really haven’t had the time (oh damn you time, damn you) to catch up on research and education so I plan on focusing a bit more on that side for the next couple of weeks. I still aim to produce at least one KGR post on the niche website, but it might take a while to update here.

So no good links and resources to share this time, but I’ll try to dig up something juicy for the next update. I promise! 😉

Please drop a comment if you have any questions or suggestions. I would also love to hear if you like this type of content. I would also love to hear it if you think this is the worst piece of content since the birth of the Internet. All feedback is welcome! Any tips and ideas from more experienced marketers are also more than welcome!

Update 09/09/2018

All right folks is time for part 2 in my niche site project journal! I have done some more research and created my first piece of content centered around the keyword golden ratio by Doug Cunnington I talked about in the first part of this series.

I have chosen the niche and have researched for some keywords and as promised I will share the process with you.

So without further ado let’s get to the point!

Choosing the niche

After some initial research I have decided to use my existing airsoft niche site at BestAirsoftGuns.net. I started creating the site as a part of the Wealthy Affiliate online entrepreneur certificate training. I pretty soon decided I wanted to focus more on the work from home / make money online niche and focused more on creating IHateWorking.net.

I also realized airsoft guns is a surprisingly small niche with some tough competition, even though my initial research suggested otherwise. The keyword research method using only Jaaxy they teach at Wealthy Affiliate doesn’t really give all the necessary information you need to asses the competition.

I have found seemingly great keywords with Jaaxy with the QSR <30 and SEO over 90. Yet a simple manual Google search shows that the first page is filled with authority sites and niche sites targeting that exact term. Most of them have several thousand words of content and tons of comments. To make outranking them even harder the domains are several years old and have a ton of back links. That’s why I think it’s important to do more keyword research than they teach at WA.

Before reading about the keyword golden ratio I thought it would be very hard to rank for any posts in the airsoft niche with reasonable amount of work and pretty much forgot about the site for few months.

The thing is, search engines take into account domain and site age and that’s the biggest reason I decided to keep using it. My content should rank a bit faster than with a completely new domain. I also know a lot about the sport so it’s easy to create content.

My current research has not shown that great possibilities for traffic so I’m treating this project as more of a proof-of-concept. If I can bring in traffic with very low competition terms in few months, I know I can replicate this with other niches.

I already have couple other niches brewing up that seem to have a lot more potential. I just don’t want to invest time and money in creating even more sites before I’m certain about my approach.

Keyword research

Finding KGR terms is not that easy. I decided to focus on zero competition terms suggested by Google autofill. This might mean I shouldn’t expect too much traffic but I have read that sometimes even keywords that have seemingly low monthly search volumes can rank for many unexpected keyword combinations. That can add up and bring surprising amounts of traffic.

So if I find a term related to airsoft that Google autofill suggests and the allintitle: results for that term are zero, I’ll go for it. SOMEONE is looking for the term and it might rank for other terms as well.

I also try to implement as much LSI, or latent semantic keywords in the content as possible. You can find great free tools for researching LSI keywords here.

Just remember to write naturally. Don’t go stuffing LSI or any other kind of keywords into the content if it doesn’t sit there naturally.

First KGR post

So the first post where I am applying these KGR ideas is about biodegradable airsoft BBs. This is a term that both Keywords Everywhere and Jaaxy show less than 10 searches for month.

On the other hand the allintitle: search returned zero matches, so it should be fairly simple process to rank for it.

The term of course was suggested by Google. There would be no point to try to rank for a term I just came up with and potentially zero traffic. Now I at least know that someone, somewhere has looked for the topic in the past.

I used the LSIgraph free service to come up with a bunch of LSI keyword that I mainly used as headings. Some are included in the text as well. Here’s a screenshot of some of the results:

LSI keyword research resultsI didn’t spend too much time on the content creation. I aimed for around 1500 words with the LSI keywords included and at the end included an Amazon link to a product I recommend.

I’m not worrying about conversions at this point as I can hone the posts if they start producing traffic. At this point my main priority is finding keywords, create content around them and get them online and indexed.

As you can see the site is very crude. I simply haven’t had time to make the layout better and more professional looking. And I have no intentions to invest too much time to that side until/if I start receiving organic traffic. I’m also pretty much a complete newb when it comes to web design and I have no artistic vision. I’m an engineer for f***s sake 🙂

Fortunately your site doesn’t have to be pretty to rank in Google. It has to function well however. That’s why I’ll be making sure it complies with Googles mobile friendly guidelines and loads fast and correctly with all devices.

Other stuff

Once I had the initial content published I set up the all-in-one SEO details in WordPress. I just put the main keyword as the title and included it in the description.

I shared the content in my Google+ (feel free to follow me, I will return the favor) and asked for comments at Wealthy Affiliate to increase the likelihood of search engines to take note of my new post.

I’ve also kept up with my research for new ideas. You’ll be doing yourself a favor by checking out these two posts:

More great info on the keyword golden ratio from humanproofdesigns.com

Great advanced keyword ideas by Glenn Allsop at Detailed.com

 

Wrapping it up

That’s it for now. My next step is to create at least couple more KGR posts before I will post another project journal update.

I’d love to hear any thoughts from you so please drop a comment if you have questions or anything to share.

I would love to hear some critique as well if you think/know I’m doing it all wrong. I’m doing this as a shared learning project, so any insight from more experienced marketers is always welcome!

The beginning 05/09/2018

Recently I have been doing some research in niche websites and have decided to focus my online efforts in creating a successful niche website. So if you are interested in learning how to build a profitable niche website in 2018 you might want to stick around and follow my progress.

I will be focusing on the niche site for a while and have decided to keep a project journal here at IHateWorking.net. This serves two purposes really. It keeps me accountable to myself for getting things done and provides valuable information to anyone interested in creating a niche site.

So, for the foreseeable future I will be mainly focusing in journal style updates on the progression of my niche site. I plan to share all the information about how I do SEO, select post topics and products, create content and get traffic and conversion. If I succeed – and I have all the intention to do so – this journal will become a pretty honest step-by-step guide to creating a niche website in 2018.

For the foundation of my niche site I will mainly follow the instructions shown in the Wealthy Affiliate Online Entrepreneur Certification training.

For content creation and SEO I plan to incorporate the Keyword Golden Ratio that Doug Cunnington from  NicheSiteProject.com has outlined.

What is a niche site?

If you are a complete novice in the online marketing world, you might not be familiar with the niche site concept. In essence, it just means a website that is built around a certain topic, a niche if you will.

Since competition online is though these days, search engines look for relevance of blog posts with the rest of the website. That´s why it’s important to narrow the niche down enough to be able to rank the site in Google with decent amount of work.

So for example your niche might be tennis gear and apparel. The competition is probably pretty tough for that so you could narrow it down to tennis rackets or even composite tennis rackets or what not. You get the point.

How do you earn money with a niche website?

So what is the point of creating a niche website? In all honesty it’s making money. Some might be sites created by enthusiasts from the passion to the hobby but most are made for marketing purposes.

Probably the most common type of niche website is one created for marketing physical products from Amazon. Niche websites utilize the affiliate marketing model.

Essentially you refer customers through your niche website reviews to Amazon or any other vendor with an affiliate program. If the referred customer makes a purchase, you receive a piece of the pie. It’s that simple really.

Affiliate marketing is very profitable for the companies since the basically outsource their marketing in a very effective way. It’s even more profitable for the marketer, since you don’t need large investment to start making profit as an affiliate marketer.

It’s actually possible to make money without any investment (except for time of course). Something that really isn’t achievable with typical business models.

Can the niche be anything?

Well yes and no. Yes, if you don’t care about making money with the site. No, if you wish to create some sales and income.

Despite what some gurus and places like Wealthy Affiliate say about it being possible to create a successful niche website in just about any niche, it really isn’t true these days. This is one of the very few things I don’t like about Wealthy Affiliate by the way. I don’t think they stress it enough how important choosing the right niche is.

Sure, it can be more fun to write about stuff you know about and it makes content creation a lot easier. But would you start a regular brick and mortar business based on something you just happen to like without doing any market research? Yeah, I wouldn’t either. It’s no different with niche sites.

You need to do your research and choose a niche that has the potential to generate traffic and sales. Generally this requires a few things. Firstly the competition for the niche has to be low or at least decent for a new site to stand a chance.

Secondly, there has to be a profitable market and a decent amount of products to choose from. The products should also be in a price point that is likely to convert in to sales that produce decent affiliate fees. So something not too expensive but not too cheap either as you would be earning literally pennies from a sale.

Thirdly the products need to be something people generally buy online. Sure if it’s in Amazons inventory, someone will probably buy it online no matter what the merchandise. But it would be much better if the products were something most people are comfortable buying online. In general people buy big appliances and things like furniture from their local stores and small appliances and tech online from the best deal. There are exceptions of course but you probably won’t achieve many conversions marketing sofas.

What is Keyword Golden Ratio

The Keyword Golden Ratio or KGR for short is a metric used to evaluate the competition of a low search volume keyword. It was developed by Doug Cunnington after combining some ideas from “some very smart people” as he puts it himself. You can read all the details from Dougs post that I linked in the beginning of this post.

In short the Keyword Golden Ratio must be below 0.25 and it is the ratio of Google allintitle: results divided by the local monthly search volume. The local monthly search volume also needs to be below 250.

In essence KGR terms are keywords that are being searched for in Google but don’t have enough matching search results.

This of course means the competition for such terms is not very tough and creating content around that term will get you ranked in Google almost instantly. That is the theory at least, we will see about the facts later on.

Generally speaking KGR terms are always long tail keywords. There are certain formats that work the best for niche marketing like Doug outlines in this video.

So I will be mainly targeting keyword phrases in the following format:

(what is) the best [product name] for a [specific task or user type]

So using our previous example: What is the best tennis racket for intermediate players

The thing about KGR terms is they won’t produce huge amount of traffic. This is obvious when you look at the formula. It dictates the local monthly search volume needs to be below 250.

The little research I’ve done already suggests it’s very hard to find KGR terms with even 100 monthly searches.

But there lies the magic. They are easy to rank terms that convert well. Receiving organic traffic to high competition keywords requires tons of work and site trust. It’s next to impossible (apparently) with a new site with little content.

The competition won’t be as tough either as most marketers are greedy and go for higher volume keywords. But it’s pointless if you can’t beat the competition.

How I plan to do keyword research

My main keyword tool will be Googles own auto fill. As shown by Doug Cunnington in the Keyword Golden Ratio masterclass, Google will happily show you what people are searching for if you give it a change.

You don’t necessarily need expensive research tools if you are willing to do a bit of manual work. Some folks would rather automate this process but I actually enjoy keyword research more than content creation and plan to do it mainly manually.

This means looking for ideas for long tail KGR terms in the Google auto fill results or in Googles related searches.

For faster analysis of Google results, I will be using the Keywords Everywhere free browser plug-in, that shows average monthly search results right away.

I will also use the Jaaxy lite keyword tool that’s included in my Wealthy Affiliate subscription.

For the time being I won’t probably utilize AHrefs and SEMRush that Doug highly recommends for doing some more advanced keyword research. They are both rather highly priced and I might decide to use them later on, but for the time being I will try to achieve results with the tools I have available right now.

Conclusion

That’s about it for the day folks! Keep tuned for updates on my progress. I promise to share all the little secrets I learn along the way. I have dedicated almost a month for pure research and it’s time to take that knowledge and put it in to use.

If you decide follow my journey I promise you I won’t disappoint you. If I fail after giving it my best I will be completely honest about that as well. This way you’ll be able to learn about my mistakes with me. I hope. No. I KNOW it won’t come to this however! I’m determined to succeed with this.

That’s it for now. I will probably post my first real journal update later this week once I find the time. I have actually already started doing my keyword research and I will be using a niche website I started building a few months ago, but gave up on. It’s easier to rank sites that have already been online some time and indexed by Google. But more about that in the next post.

If you wish to follow my journey please bookmark my site and follow me on Google+ and Twitter to receive all the updates!

 

How to start a business for free online

How to start a business for free online

Looking to start an online business? Don’t have a dime to spare? Let’s look at how to start a business for free online!

Here’s the thing, you can start making money online without investing a cent. Now I’m not saying it’s easy. I’m not saying I have done it myself. But I have read people doing it and I do have one great idea for anyone willing to try.

I want to make it completely clear this is not the way I started my business myself. My business is still (as of writing this post) in its infancy and it’s just starting to produce traffic. I’m still holding on to a day job, so I have some cash to spare and I have invested few hundred bucks in to my online business.

But if you are in a situations where you have some time to work on an online business but can’t really invest any money on it just yet I might have solution for you.

I’ll have to warn you, it takes work. It always does. And when there’s no money involved there usually a bit more work involved. That’s just how it goes in life. If you can’t invest money, you have to invest time.

How is it possible to start a business without money?

Yeah, I know it sounds crazy. That you could actually start a business without investing a dime?

Because of the internet, it’s possible. Of course establishing a real registered business is going to include some paperwork and fees. The great thing about making money online is the fact that you can start making income before you have to worry about that stuff.

Here’s the thing. Any conventional business takes a crap ton of money to get started. From a coffee shop to a machinery to a IT consulting firm it takes thousands and thousands to get everything going.

You need facilities, machinery, employees, computers, cars, inventory and god know what else before you have made a dollar.

This is not the case with online business. It’s about selling information or marketing other companies products as an affiliate and getting an affiliate fee.

A tablet with online marketing process graph

One way to start making money from scratch is to get affiliate referrals through free to register channels like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram etc. Any place that allows you to share content for free with you followers.

Once you have made enough referrals to earn $50 or so you can reinvest that money to buy a domain and start creating content.

Since Wealthy Affiliate offers everything you need to run an online affiliate marketing business, I will use them as an example for using this model.

You could in theory replicate this by promoting almost anything from Amazon products to customer leads to companies. You could then reinvest that money to either buying a domain on some other service to create a niche website or maybe just buy some direct traffic to an offer.

The ways are many but this is the one I’m familiar with so It’ll have to get the point across.

Step 1: Register at Wealthy Affiliate for free subscription

The first step would be to create a free account in Wealthy Affiliate. You automatically join the built in Wealthy Affiliate affiliate program.

The free subscription allows you to complete the first chapter of both trainings in Wealthy Affiliate and also to host two free .siterubix sites. These are possible, but hard to rank in Google so you could in theory make money with them for free as well.

You also get to do 30 keyword searches on Jaaxy lite. This is enough to get you started in content creation if you use it wisely.

The wealthy affiliate starter membership

I wrote an extensive review here, so you might want to check that out so you know what you are getting yourself into.

Registering for the free account doesn’t require a credit card. Just you email and they are not aggressive with the marketing so it really isn’t a big deal to register to check it out.

If nothing else, check out the free courses to get some ideas about how to make money online.

But for our current objective, I have something else in mind.

Step 2: Get at least four referrals to Wealthy Affiliate

You see, as of writing this, you get $11.45 for every referral that upgrades to premium. That means if you can get 4, just 4 referrals, you will make enough money to pay for the monthly premium subscription.

How do you get referrals if you don’t have a website with traffic?

Well you have to get a bit creative and it probably takes some work.

There are plenty of free channels to use these days like Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc. If you have a channel with any kind of following that could solve you problem.

If you have no accounts and no followers, then it’s time to start working. Create something that interest people of socialize in YouTube channels.

You could even employ real life marketing. You could market the service to you friends, family or colleagues. I know this can seem a bit awkward, so make sure you know the service and trust it so you can recommend it with clean conscience.

But that’s how you get started without ANY money. If you have even a few bucks to spare you have much more options.

Step 3: Invest you affiliate fees to a monthly subscription

So you have now referred four people to WA that have gone premium. Great. The next step is to invest that money to go premium yourself.

As a premium member you affiliate fees are doubled, so you need to refer only two people that go premium to pay for you monthly subscription.

Going premium allows you to complete the training the teaches you a lot about making money online. It’s not the be-all-end-all solution, but it’s a model that works. You should focus on learning one thing at a time.

The premium membership also includes the keyword ressearch tool Jaaxy lite version. Which gets us to our next step.

Step 4: Buy a domain and do keyword research

Once you have you premium membership set up follow either the Affiliate Bootcamp or the Internet Entrepreneur Certification and choose a niche.

At this point it would be wise to invest $13.99 – $15.99 to buy a domain for you own site. You could accomplish this by getting one extra referral if you really don’t have cash to spare. This is a once a year fee so it’s actually dirt cheap.

Once you have you niche and domain figured out it’s time to activate you site and install WordPress on it.

After that it’s time to start creating content and follow the training.

To create meaningful content that can rank in Google, you need to do keyword research with Jaaxy lite which is inluded in you premium membership.

Jaaxy allows you to do unlimited amount of searches, so it’s time to get creative and start coming up with keywords that are related to you niche.

Step 5: Get referrals from other sources until you site start producing traffic and money

You now have you own website set up and you have created a bunch of posts on low competition keywords.

Since it takes time for a new site to start ranking in Google, you will need a source of income while you are building you site.

This means you have to keep getting two more referrals to WA every month to cover most of you expenses as you get $22.5 per referral as a premium member.

If paying $49 a month is too steep for you I’m guessing you don’t have a job. This means you probably have more than average amount of time (I get there are situations where this isn’t true) to dedicate to creating content and building you business.

Otherwise, I honestly recommend getting a job while working on you online business. It takes time and you must have other expenses as well.

This means you might achieve better than average results but don’t expect to start making any money at least before the 6-month mark. Give it a year if you want to be conservative.

Step 6: Profit!

So you now have you own site, you have enough content to start ranking in Google and you are receiving traffic to some profitable keywords.

It’s time to find a way to monetize you site! You could drive traffic to Wealthy Affiliate if you are following the Bootcamp or for example sell Amazon products related to you niche. The ways are many.

At this point you should be making enough money to cover you hosting and membership costs at Wealthy Affiliate.

At this point the sky’s the limit. Just keep creating high quality content to scale you business up. If you wish to continue with Wealthy Affiliate you can. You get a great hosting service, a keyword research tool and a great community to share you problems with.

Conclusion

There you have it. A way to make money online for free.

I’m not going to lie to you and say it will be easy. To succeed with this you would have to dedicate some serious time marketing WA memberships through other channels. It’s not as easy to get people to convert to premium membership as you might think.

It also requires you to create high amounts (several per week) of high quality posts if you wish to start making money at the 6-month mark.

I’m going to go as far and say that it would be easier to get a part time job to cover you expenses than to try and pull this of. If you growing business depends on the affiliate fees, you whole business is extremely vulnerable.

So get the resources, start working hard and succeed! This is just an idea.

 

 

 

 

Wealthy Affiliate web hosting review

If you are a blogger or an internet marketer or thinking about becoming one, you need a hosting service for your websites.

Wealthy Affiliate is an all-in-one online resource for marketers that includes a state-of-the-art hosting service aimed specifically for running WordPress based niche websites for marketers.

I wrote an extensive review about Wealthy Affiliate here. However the hosting service is so packed with features and the price is very competitive that I decided it needed a review of its own.

So without further ado, let’s get cracking and see how well the Wealthy Affiliate hosting service stands up to the competition!

What is a website hosting service

In case you are new to internet marketing or website hosting I thought it would be good to write couple words about what exactly is a website hosting service. If you are already familiar with this stuff feel free to skip to the next paragraph for the review.

There are millions of websites on the internet. Every single one of those websites are located on a host. A host is a server (or actually a series of them) where the actual physical data of the website is located.

A website hosting service is a service that sells or rents server space to host your domain and website content. Just like the name says, duh :).

Domain suffixes are many

Hosting services have many more important functions like database support, data backup in case of physical storage failures. This means you don’t have to have physical backups on your home computer if the service is up to par.

Modern hosting services also make sure their security is up to date so you don’t have to worry about getting hacked on the server side as long as you keep your websites up to date as well.

Most hosting services also offer tools like email boxes and forwards, integrated content management systems and domain registration services.

So in essence a website hosting service can be just rented server space with database support where you upload your site files manually.

Most of the popular ones you want to use as a marketer include lots of tools. Wealthy Affiliates web hosting service is no different on this so let’s check out some of the features!

Features of Wealthy Affiliate web hosting

The Wealthy Affiliate web hosting service comes packed with features just like most of its competitors. Let’s start with the basics:

Number of websites:

Wealthy Affiliate membership includes hosting for 25 of your own domains plus 25 FREE websites. The free domains come with a .siterubix domain and are great for testing or for hosting small personal sites not aimed for public distribution.

Be aware that the free websites don’t rank very well in search engines compared to paid domains (though, its possible to rank them) so they really serve best for testing.

You have to naturally pay the registration fees for your own domains. The registration fee is $ 13.99 – 15.99 / year. There are no up sells and the registration process is very simple and fast. There is 30 GB of server space included for your websites. Nothing to complain here.

One of the great things about the domain registration service is that it looks for alternative domain names and suffixes if the one you want isn’t available.

Domain search example

The whole Wealthy Affiliate service and its tools are fully integrated. This means you can actually do keyword research with Jaaxy (lite version included) and see if the exact match domain for a keyword is available. You can then register the domain with couple clicks. This is a feature especially marketers and anyone knowledgeable in SEO will appreciate.

Speed:

As the internet is evolving, research engines are giving more and more importance to user experience. Site loading speed is one of the not so obvious, yet one of the most important factors for positive user experience. People hate slow sites and for that reason, Google hates them too. Search engines appreciate good user experience.

That’s why it extremely important to use simple page design, compressed pictures and avoid using too many plug-ins on your site. But even if your site is optimized to the perfection, it doesn’t matter if your website is hosted on a slow server.

SiteSpeed offers faster WordPress experience

Many cheap web hosting services that seem good on paper otherwise are cheap because they are located on slow and cheap servers. Speed costs money you see.

Wealthy Affiliate uses Amazon hosting servers that are located on the latest and most powerful server in the world. The average page load time in WA web hosting is only 1.3 seconds. This is excellent by anyones standards.

Server uptime:

These days most hosting services have pretty stable server uptimes. Because even few minutes of website downtime can cost a company thousands, hosting services do their best to keep all the websites hosted on their servers up and running.

While most hosting services have gotten the downtime to few hours per year, Wealthy Affiliate offers full website redundancy. They accomplish this by having a constant mirror of your site in case of server failure or maintenance. If your actual site goes down, the mirror is swapped over instantly.

This is something that should not be taken lightly. Like I said, any downtime on a successful marketing site can mean the loss of thousands of dollars in revenue. This kind on website uptime is really unparalleled and state-of-the-art technology. The fact they have included this in their modest pricing is incredible!

Security:

All domains purchased through Wealthy Affiliate web hosting SiteDomains service have privacy protection included. This is something you usually have to pay extra $10. It protects your personal information from identity thefts, spammers and your competition. This is something you want to use these days no matter where you decide to host your site.

WordPress is a great platform for bloggers and marketers as it requires close to zero technical skills to publish content. It is however notorious for getting hacked, because bloggers and webmasters forget to keep their WordPress and plugins up to date and hosting services have had issues with WordPress security on their end as well.

Wealthy affiliate site security

This is something you don’t have to worry about with Wealthy Affiliate. The whole hosting platform is built from the ground up with the aim to offer the best WordPress platform around.

The company really knows WordPress and its security issues. This means they are able to prevent spam and hacking completely.

Backups:

One great feature of WA hosting is daily backups. This means if you manage to delete something valuable on your site or whack everything up while running an update, they can help you return a fresh backup copy of your site.

Wealthy affiliate hosting features

Cons

The WA web hosting is geared towards marketers building niche websites using WordPress content management system. It’s without a doubt the best and most comprehensive service for THAT use.

If you dislike WordPress for some reason, you will lose a lot of the functionality of WA web hosting. There might be better services available for you that allows you to choose your content management system.

Experienced webmasters who like to write their own code and have the possibility to trim and tune ever small little detail on their site, databases and servers, might find WA too integrated. It’s geared towards simplicity and time efficiency, not technical versatility.

Then again if you are an experienced webmaster you probably won’t end up reading this review.

Pricing

“Yeah so Wealthy Affiliate website hosting seems all fine and dandy Jukka, but it must cost an arm and a leg, right?”

Well, here comes the best part. It’s actually one of the cheapest (serious) hosting services. There are cheaper ones but they don’t really offer the speed and security that a successful site or a blog requires these days, so I won’t count them.

The monthly subscription of Wealthy Affiliate costs $49. This might seem a bit steep at first glance especially if you are looking to run a single blog or site. Do take to account the price remains the same even if you are running the full 50 websites (except for the annual domain registration fees).

But there’s more! If you take the yearly subscription the price drops to $359 / year which equals $29.90 / month. Talk about a big discount.

But wait there’s even more! If you want to get the subscription for super cheap, you can usually get the yearly subscription for $299 during the black Friday weekend. This drops the monthly cost to $24.90.

BUT WAIT! THERE’S EVEN MORE! Actually there really isn’t. I just like being dramatic and I’m not very good at selling. I’m sure you can tell :).

Or actually there is. You can actually test Wealthy Affiliate for completely free without even giving any credit card information.

 

Wealthy affiliate pricing

Wealthy Affiliate web hosting compared to other popular services

Let’s compare Wealthy Affiliate web hosting service with some of the popular premium WordPress hosting services marketers use:

Webhosting comparison table

As you can see, the WA web hosting is pretty far ahead of the competition when it comes to the features and bang-for-the buck.

It has the biggest amount of websites, fastest hosting, most bandwidth and unlimited email accounts just to name few of the perks.

Conclusion

The Wealthy Affiliate web hosting that comes as part of the Wealthy Affiliate premium subscription is the best hosting service for marketers or anyone looking to build fast sites with easy to use interface. With all the tools from keyword research to marketing training it really is a no brainer to go with Wealthy Affiliate.

If you are a marketer or a blogger looking to build sites without all the hassle then I can recommend Wealthy Affiliate wholeheartedly! Let them take care of the technology so you can focus on your business. Time is money after all! Nothing takes take fun out of running an online business like battling with technology.

If you have any questions or comments please share them below and I promise to answer them asap.

Till the next time!

Is internet marketing a good career?

Is internet marketing a good career?

You have probably heard or read about people making good money with internet marketing and might be wondering is internet marketing a good career and something you should consider for yourself.

If you’re thinking about becoming an internet marketer, you should know these realities of the business.

Internet and it’s ever growing user base has made it possible to make money online anywhere in the world by marketing online.

Even though the competition has gotten tougher, the potential to make money online is better than ever.

But it’s of course not a walk in the park to be a successful internet marketer. Otherwise everybody would be doing it.

Let’s start by looking at the realities of internet marketing and what kind of money can you expect to earn as a successful internet marketer.

The realities of internet marketing

There are a bit over 4 billion users in the internet today and the numbers keep growing as technology and infrastructure advances even to the farthest corners of earth.

The competition in internet marketing has gotten tougher compared to the early days of internet. But so has the opportunities as the user base has exploded and companies have realized the potential in affiliate marketing.

The internet is growing globally

Affiliate marketing is by far the most common way marketers make money on the internet. In essence a company gives the marketer fraction of the profit when they refer a buying customer.

Large online stores like Amazon have realized the potential of affiliate marketing and both the companies and their affiliate marketers have made fortunes using this model.

This is why you can market almost anything these days online. From sports apparel to information products. Or from coffee beans to airsoft guns.

Unlike you might expect a successful marketer doesn’t have to be very experienced with technology. Things like coding are not necessary to be successful in marketing

Content management systems have evolved to the point that anyone who can use email and a smart phone has all the necessary know-how to begin creating a marketing site. Experience and know how in information technology is of course useful and makes the process easier.

What really is important for a successful internet marketer is the ability to write or create other compelling content like YouTube videos. If you are not a natural writer, don’t worry about. It’s a skill that can be learned like everything else.

In marketing simple and easy to understand language is more important than perfect punctuation. To make revenue with your content you have to earn how to sell. This means creating trust with your readers by offering honest and useful information.

The potential to make a career in internet marketing is possible to anyone willing to learn the ropes and work hard for it.

Treat it like a real business

Here’s the thing. To be really successful in internet marketing, you need to treat it like real business. You can’t just work on it every now and then when you feel like it.

A bulldozer moving land

It takes consistent hard work to build a successful money earning business.

It means creating high quality content every single week.

It means developing your site and content constantly and making sure everything is up to date, content and software security included.

It means keeping up with legislation so you don’t end up committing crimes by accidents.

But if you manage to do all that and create a successful online marketing business. There are A LOT of pros. Let’s talk about them first!

Pros

You get to decide what to create content about

When you run an online marketing business, you of course get to decide what you wish to market in your content and what your content is about.

The word choice with arrows pointing to all directions

Many people don’t realize how important it is for their well-being that someone else is not telling them what to do.

When you are your own boss you can choose to create content only about things that interest you.

You might be someone to whom it’s important to write about ethical or spiritual topics or you might be someone who just wants to talk about sports. It doesn’t matter, you are the boss.

You can market almost anything these days and the only thing that matters is that your content is interesting to at least SOME people. Once you have traffic to your site, it’s only a matter of finding a way to monetize it.

Now don’t get me wrong. Some niches are more profitable than others. It can require quite a bit of imagination to monetize some weirder niches but usually it’s possible.

You get to help people

A successful marketer offers solutions to problems. This means the content you create as a marketer is actually meant to help people.

There are few things in life that offer more sense of accomplishment and satisfaction than knowing you have helped countless of strangers all around the world with your information. And you get to make a buck while doing it!

Work anywhere with an internet connection

I’m writing this post sitting on a beautiful rooftop terrace in Pärnu, Estonia. I’m from Finland myself.

I’m sipping on a cold cider with my small traveling laptop on my lap top. Our residence doesn’t have WiFi so I’m writing on hard drive and I will share the internet connection from my phone to post this later on.

Rooftop terrace at Pärnu

You see, the technology has evolved to the point that it’s possible to go online almost anywhere for a very affordable price.

This makes it possible for an internet marketer to work from anywhere in the world with very small investment.

Your main tools are all online so all you need is an internet connection to update and communicate every now and then.

So if you are someone who likes to travel or wants to change scenery every now and then, this is a great advantage of running an online business. Complete freedom of location.

Small investment and passive income

This is a huge one. When you start a successful internet marketing business your typical income structure will be quite different from a normal job or a brick and mortar business.

In a typical job or business you either get paid a fixed salary every month or by the hours of work you put in. The point is that you get compensated for your work quite fast, for one time.

You then work some more the next month to keep your job and earn a new paycheck. I’m sure I don’t need to open this up more to you and you are familiar with the concept.

In a typical brick and mortar business you take a large loan to be able to rent or buy an office and inventory etc. (these of course depend a lot on the business).

You typically start making money quite fast if you have done your research but it takes a long time to start making profit because of the large debt.

When you start an internet marketing business it takes next to no investment. You need a computer and an internet connection, but since most people have them anyways and both can be acquired dirt cheap these days, it’s not a big deal.

a 25 cent coin

The only thing you really need to invest in is a hosting service and probably some education if you want to succeed.

After that comes the hardest part. You will need too work on the business producing content FOR MONTHS without expecting any revenue.

Yes, you read that correctly, months. Some times over a year.

This is because search engines like Google don’t give authority to new sites. They won’t rank your content until you have enough of it and your site is being constantly updated for long enough.

But once your content starts to rank in Google and you start receiving traffic, the magic starts to happen.

Suddenly the articles you wrote months ago are producing traffic and you start receiving revenue from work you did months ago!

And the best part is just coming!

The work you put in month ago will potentially earn you revenue for months or years to come on complete autopilot! That’s the holy grail of internet marketing, passive income.

Once your site has matured enough for the search engines to rank the content, all the new articles you write will rank much faster. Instead of months some times almost instantly.

After that the income potential grows exponentially. It’s only a matter of how much high quality content you can put out.

This is usually the point it where it becomes wise to outsource at least some of the work or hire writers. That way your business will grow rapidly.

So in a way your work and revenue is cumulative in internet marketing. It takes perseverance, tenacity and faith to keep working on your business every day while not earning a penny in the beginning.

But if or when you succeed (and you will if you really want to) you will get compensated exponentially for all the work you put in growing your business.

Cons

So as you can see there is a lot of good stuff going for internet marketing. It’s of course not all bells and whistles so let’s look at some of the cons of working as an independent online marketer.

Independent work

For some people this can be a pro but to most it’s a con, especially after a while.

You work alone. You don’t have colleagues to shoot the shit with or you don’t get immediate feedback about the quality of your work from a supervisor. So it gets lonely.

You have to able to write or produce quality content otherwise (video, maybe audio) to be successful in internet marketing.

A man standing on an empty large parking lot

This means you are pretty much on your own with your experience and talent.

You also need to do a lot of research on your own. No one is going to search low competition keywords for you or give you good topics or ideas for content. So once again, it’s completely up to you.

This is the price of freedom. You get to decide about everything, but you are also responsible of everything. Including failure.

You are on the mercy of internet corporations and legislation

The internet is an ever changing entity. The search engine algorithms are also constantly changing. This means the things Google uses to rank your site today might not apply tomorrow.

Every time Google has made a large update to its algorithms many marketers have lost their positions on the first page of Google. This means they are also losing revenue.

Usually they have achieved their first page rankings with completely approved methods but as Google changes they way it determines page relevance to the search term it can effect rankings severely.

That’s why it’s important to focus on producing high quality relevant content instead of building backlinks or stuffing your content with keywords. Everything else should come naturally.

The other thing marketer have to be constantly aware of is legislation. Not just in their home country but globally.

World map with legal symbols over it

The internet is a global entity and most legislation concerns companies outside of their jurisdiction as people can visit websites from all over the world.

Good example of this is the recent GDPR legislation of the European Union. It affects any company on the internet that might have visitors from the EU. So pretty much the whole internet.

Failure to keep up with the global legislation as a marketer could get you in to big trouble so you have quite a lot of studying to do.

Fortunately places like Wealthy Affiliate keep their users up to date with the legal stuff and even give out pre written disclaimers.

It takes time to start getting income

The fact is that you can’t start making money instantly with internet marketing.

In theory an experienced marketer might be able to pull that off with paid traffic but since you are reading this you shouldn’t expect that.

It can take over a year of constant work to start seeing significant revenue. Some make it faster, others slower. It really depends on the niche and how hard and smartly you work. Everyone has different results.

It takes time to get revenue in internet marketing

So if you are unemployed and in dire need of cash, just becoming an internet marketer is not the right solution for you.

Instead, you should get a job to pay the bills and start learning and creating content so maybe after a year or so you can quit the job.

It’s easy to fail if you don’t have guidance

Internet marketing is not rocket science. However there are certain rules you need to know to become successful.

If you don’t educate yourself and just start working randomly, you might end up putting in the same amount of effort a successful marketer has, without seeing any results. Effectively wasting your hard work.

A disappointed man with a sign saying sorry in the background

That’s why it’s extremely important to invest in an education. Just like with any other career, you can’t expect to learn everything for free.

Things like keyword research, web hosting, content creation and legislation all are pretty simple when someone shows you how to do it right.

Trying to do it all on your own becomes a tedious task that can end up badly with a lawsuit in extreme cases.

My number one recommendation for learning internet marketing is Wealthy Affiliate. I wrote a thorough review about the service here.

Wealthy Affiliate banner

It’s basically an all-in-one service for marketers with the price tag of a high quality hosting service (which is included). You would have to invest in a hosting service as a marketer anyway, so it really is a no brainer to go with WA.

Conclusion

Phew! If you made it this far, thanks for reading and please drop a comment on your thoughts about internet marketing as a career.

I do think it’s a profession that offers great freedom and the pros far out weight the cons. But don’t be fooled and think it doesn’t take work.

If you are willing to accept that and ready to put in the work I suggest you get started right now. Taking action is the first step to success!

If you have any questions, please ask and I will do my best to answer them.

 

 

I don't want to go back to work

I don’t want to go back to work

Today I’m going to write about a little bit of a different topic and more from a personal point of view: I don’t want to go back to work. I want to share my thoughts about going back to work in case it might help someone else dreading returning to their job.

I’m on my summer holiday from my day job and I have been working on my side business here on I Hate Working. The summer has been crazy good here in Finland so far. We have had actual sunshine and warm temperatures after two cold summers.

I’m enjoying every second of it and really don’t want to go back to work. Fortunately I still have couple weeks of holiday left.

Just the thought of endless days at work during the dark winter months makes me physically nauseous. It feels like a different world compared to the one I am living in right now.

This takes us to my first tip.

Don’t think about work until you really have to

When you are on a holiday or some other break from work, it really doesn’t help to think about work. You probably can’t (or shouldn’t) do anything to contribute to your job so it’s no use to think about it at all.

Sure it can be tough to not think about work, but if you actively try to avoid it you can be pretty successful. Returning to work after a break is probably going to suck as much regardless how much you think about it while away.

Don't think about work until you really have to

Worrying about it the whole time you are away doesn’t make it any easier, it actually makes it harder. You are enforcing a negative though pattern you have associated with your job. So once you do return to work, all that built up anxiety is going to make it even harder.

So focus on relaxing and doing things that make you happy. You deserve it!

Avoid everything related to your job

Like I said, just the thought of my day job and winter makes me physically nauseous at this point as I’m enjoying the freedom and summer so much. It makes my stomach turn.

That’s why I’m doing everything in my power to not to think about my day job.

This means I avoid going to the part of the town where my office is situated at.

It means I avoid reading the local news as I work in public administration and the news are full of stuff associated with my work.

Avoid everything associated with your work

I have actually taken this so far that I have almost stopped following the news all together during my holiday. Not just the local ones. News are full of stuff reminding of my work, if not directly then indirectly.

News are full of negative and stressful stuff and I really think it’s good take a break from them also every now and then. Even though I do think intelligent people should follow the news and be aware of what’s happening in the society locally and globally.

I also avoid socializing with people from my work place. If I bump in to some one, I say hi, but I refuse to talk about work related stuff.

I also avoid giving professional advice related to my work to people and tell them I’m on my holiday.

So I try to avoid anything that reminds me of my day job really. This way I get a real break from work and my mind get’s to refresh.

Like I mentioned before, dreading returning to work is complete waste of time. You could be using that time to enjoy yourself or do something productive, like building a business or educating yourself on something useful.

I know some of my colleagues check their work email every day during their holiday and have their work phone with them. This is something I can’t understand. It’s like you never left the office in the first place.

Things that help me go back to work

The biggest thing that helps me go back to work is to know that I have a contingency plan. I’m building a business to work for myself.

Even though I’m on my holiday, I have dedicated time almost every day to work on my online business. This doesn’t feel like working though. It gives me a great feeling of accomplishment and makes me happy knowing I’m pushing my business forward every day.

If I were to stop working on my business during the holiday, I know I would feel hopeless returning to work. It would seem so much more permanent as I would know I’ve lost the momentum in building my online business. It’s very important to work on your business every day to get things rolling in the beginning.

During my holiday I also spend time doing other things I love. I hang out with family and friends, I play music, I lift at the gym, I walk in the nature, I go swimming, I travel.

Things that help getting back to work

Doing as much of these things as possible, now that I have the time, helps me remind me there are other things in life besides work.

During the winter it feels there’s just work and chores. It’s easy to get depressed and stressed when you lose sight of what life is really about.

It’s about the good times in case you missed it!

Knowing these things will be there even when returning to work makes it that much easier. You have to remember that work is just one small bit of your life, not it’s purpose.

Why I don’t want to go back to work

The biggest thing that makes me dread returning to work is the stress. I work in an expert role and have quite a lot of responsibility.

There is always something that’s gone wrong from someones point of view. Lot of the stuff I do includes many parties and the end results rarely pleases everyone.

This is something that gives me quite a bit of stress. Many times I get complaints even when I did everything right. Fortunately I rarely get any complaints from my own organization. It’s the customers and associates.

I know logically I have done my work well but emotionally I feel like I have failed because of the constant negative feedback.

Why I don't want to go back to work

I also think I´’m not in the right line of business. I became an engineer because I’m technically gifted. I understand very easily how things work. Be it machines, processes or regimes.

Working in the public administration means I’m making decision about peoples life in a profession I don’t care for too much. It includes a lot of legal stuff and bureaucracy I’m not really interested in.

The last thing I don’t like is the lack of freedom. That’s why I’ve decided to work for myself. I love to travel and having full time desk jockey job means I only get to travel couple times a year.

If you are in a similar situation you should really think about what exactly are things that cause you not to want to go back to work. Then do you best to change that.

If you really hate the thought about going back to work it might be time to think about quitting your job. I wrote a post about how to do that correctly. There are other options so don’t lose hope!

Conclusion

There you have it. My reasons and tips for not wanting to go back to work. I hope they offer you some home help. Tell me what you think about them in the comments section below. I promise to get back to you!

So what are your reasons for not wanting to get back to work?