5
Oct

BANS Is For Sale For A Mere $500,000

Owners of Build A Niche Store just got word that the eBay affiliate store builder is going on the auction block. Yes, BANS is for sale. Actually it’s already up for auction at Flippa.com and you can own it for a Buy It Now price of only $500,000. Or if that’s a bit too steep for you and you think you can get it for cheaper through the auction process, the opening bid starts at just $200,000. I’d sure like to collect an affiliate fee on that sale.

Not only is BANS for sale, but everything related to BANS including N1Way (which was honestly a bit disappointing) and 27 related domains in various stages of development go along with it. It does seem kind of odd that the developers just came out with the new ebook or e-online-whatever, The N1Way or The Number 1 Way To Make Money Online only 3 months ago and they are now selling the whole show. Actually when you see that the total revenue generated from the ethingy N1Way was only $16,926.59, it’s not quite as surprising.

It’s a pretty interesting read at the auction page to look at the profit generated from BANS and all the domains that go with the sale as well as how the profit from BANS took a serious nose dive late last year and into this year. Profit for 2008 was $267,985 and profit so far for 2009 is right around 20% of that at $54,009. In reading the auction page you see the revenue drop off beginning in July or August of 2008 where they state:

At this point BANS was starting to get a bad reputation as being used by spammers so we re-developed the sales presentation and user forum accepting a significant cut in revenue so that it would have a legitimate shot as a long term project.

It was about that time that several people including myself started seeing some of their version 3.0 BANS stores getting deindexed by Google. I’ll take part of the blame for that in that I was putting up too many stores and not having enough time to fully develop them, while a lot of the blame goes to eBay affiliate spammers who used BANS for hundreds or thousands of garbage sites with no content and only auction listings. The general consensus was that Google didn’t like this and identified something in v 3.0 that was a footprint and removed many, many sites from its index. Some of my eBay affiliate income has returned since taking a big dive around the end of 2008, but it’s still not where it was at its height of around $1,000 per month.

While BANS is for up for auction, it in no way changes what I’m doing with it. Since the glory days, I’ve continued to work on a couple of my sites with one taking up the majority of my BANS related time. Getting backlinks and working on a blog added to my primary store has made somewhat of a difference and that will be the direction I’ll continue to head in for the time being as far as BANS relate affiliate revenue. I also have several other sites with eBay auctions and the good news is that my Quality Click Pricing Report last month was significantly more than twice the actual revenue earned. As long as that holds, I’ll have nothing to complain to eBay about its new click pricing model. If it doesn’t, well then, it will be suspect.

BANS will still continue to be a great product regardless of who owns it as long as you develop your stores and treat it like a business.

Popularity: 38% [?]

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30
Jun

Bulid A Niche Store – No Further Development

Build A Niche Store (BANS) users received an email yesterday covering a few things and one was letting us know that the current owners will no longer be further developing the product. They feel that as far as they’re concerned they’ve taken BANS as far as they intended to. In fact they probably took it further than they intended. But that doesn’t mean BANS is dead or that it is going to disappear in the future. That just isn’t going to happen because as long as you own BANS you can still build stores with it and if the developers sell, (they’ve had inquiries) well, then it will just get better.

A second thing covered in the email was basically a schooling for those that have built BANS stores, or any niche site, with either no content or unrelated and non relevant content. Speaking of the model of affiliate marketing that only the committed will make money at, they said:

If you don’t truly know the model (the requirements of the model) how can you successfully develop sites to profit from it?

This has always been a shortfall for BANS.

It’s always been just a tool – some of you have loved it, some of you have outgrown it and some of you have abandoned it.

With no direction, the idea of the “quickest path to success” is the one that many followed which meant the rapid development of poorly chosen, poorly planned, poorly built, poorly marketed and poorly managed sites.

The result of that process is inevitable – regardless of platform.

If you can’t see that you’re wasting your time.

That’s what I’ve been saying for the last year and a half here at AffiliateConfession.com even though when starting out building my BANS sites I played into the build-a-ton of sites mentality. Now, there’s nothing wrong with building a ton of sites if, and only if, you can develop them properly. Unfortunately in many cases that isn’t what has happened with many who have purchased BANS. As mentioned in the email example above, many have looked towards the “quickest path to success” with BANS and it has turned out to be no path to success at all.

Which brings me to the third part of the email where the developers are announcing a new product they’re releasing soon that will teach people the number 1 way to make money online. In fact, that’s the name of their website and where the new product will be released from when it’s ready. The url is TheNumber1WaytoMakeMoneyOnline.com. There’s not much to see there right now, but you can download a free pdf file that covers what will be in the guide.

When the guide is released it’s only going to be $24.95 and although it’s probably more geared to beginners I’m still going to get it because there’s always something to learn and I trust the guys that developed BANS because I love the product and the developers have never been about hype so I know they’re new guide will not be about hype.

There’s such a need for a straightforward product like this because there’s so much wrong information available about how to make money online today. And there are so many people who need to hear once again that there’s no quick path to success. I probably need to hear it again as well and for only $24.95 I trust it will be a pretty inexpensive lesson.

Popularity: 17% [?]

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11
May

How Much Content Should Your BANS Store Have?

I haven’t written much lately about Build A Niche Store, but I still do come across those stores that have little or no product descriptions and absolutely zero articles for content. And since I’ve been working quite a bit on my gold coins BANS store I thought I’d discuss how much content you should add to your store and a couple things you can do to get better rankings and more traffic.

Besides product descriptions of at least 2 paragraphs for each and every one of your products pages you should treat your BANS store as an on going project and continue to add pages to it on a fairly regular basis. I changed my philosophy back several months ago as did many BANS users, because of sites getting deindexed, in that the general consensus had been to build as many stores as possible and add content as you could. Now, I wouldn’t recommend working on more that one or two BANS stores at a time until you can add at least 30 or 40 pages of content to each one along with appropriate descriptions for each page that features auctions. You also want to get 30 or 40 articles to start off with placed in article directories for those all important incoming links.

Now, don’t think you’re going to get away with picking up a few articles from an article site and throw them on your store along with nonsensical product descriptions and poof, you’re done with that store. I’ve never been one to advocate the easy way of affiliate marketing and anything other than serious treatment of your content by giving your niche audience the quality information they’re looking for just isn’t worth doing.

Once you have your 30 to 40 pages, the same amount of articles and relevant product descriptions, congratulations, you now have the beginnings of a BANS store. I’ve read on the Build A Niche Store forums that some people have put up 10 or 15 pages of content on their sites and now they can’t think of anything else to add to their site. If you can’t think of more than 10 pages of content to add to your BANS site then either you need to change your niche or, more than likely, you need to expand your thinking.

On my gold coins BANS site I currently have 78 pages of content in several sections such as alternative investments, buying gold coins, the financial bailout, gold bullion, rare gold coins and more. These are all subjects related to gold coins that will eventually draw in the kind of visitor that could possibly be interested in either collecting gold coins or investing in gold coins. It’s not really that hard coming up with stuff to write about related to your niche. Just go to Google News or Google Blog Search and search for the top keywords in your area of interest. You’re bound to find lots of ideas for content and articles for article marketing.

As you continue to build your BANS store, the more relevant, quality content you add, the more your site begins to look like quality site to the search engines and your visitors. As far as some of the other things you can do to get better rankings are remove auctions from your home page and start a blog on your BANS site. I’ve seen my site completely disappear for some top keywords in just a couple of days when turning on home page auctions and then have watched that totally reverse itself in the same amount of days when flipping the switch again. I don’t have a clue why this happens, but Google just doesn’t like to see BANS sites with auctions on the home page, so get rid of them.

Also, blogs normally only take a few days to appear in the search engines and the gold coins blog added to the BANS site, while it only has 8 posts, it is indexed and starting to get traffic. The blog covers some things related to gold coins and other economic news and gives me an outlet to rant about the current state of financial affairs in this country while giving people access to alternative investments in gold if they choose to do so.

Yes, building a quality BANS site is still a lot of work, but having a successful affiliate business is all about work and quality these days. There are certainly smart and easier ways of building your affiliate business and a BANS store, but there aren’t any short cuts to easy money any longer.

Popularity: 27% [?]

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5
Mar

February 2009 Affiliate Income Report

In every affiliate’s career there are good income months and bad months. February was a bad income month for me for a couple of reasons. I spent another $800 on 100 articles for content and article marketing and did some advertising that just didn’t pay off. Also, the eBay Partner Network was way off for me this month.

One of the ppc campaigns I ran this past month, that was one of those, “This will definitely work” campaigns, has drained me of over $200 without a single conversion. Almost the same thing happened with Facebook as well when I spent about $120 to earn a mere $36. Luckily the merchant getting traffic through the ppc campaign has a 45 day cookie so it might just pay off. The reason I spent so much on that campaign is that a single conversion could erase all the losses because were talking about $2,500 products with a 10% payout. Hopefully it will be worth it because with pay per click marketing, things can turn around in a single day.

So in effect, I spent about $1,100 this month that brought zero return so far. The articles however are producing some decent seo results for one of my BANS stores and if nothing else, this site should produce some decent Adsense revenue once I add it to all the content.

Total revenue produced last month was $2,825.57 with expenses of $1,317.14 that gave me a net income of $1,508.16. Everything breaks down as follows:

Google Adsense – $1,319.10
Commission Junction – $225.56
EPN – eBay – $186.99
Meal Planner Ebook – $187.00
TripAdvisor – $110.59
Private Advertising – $105.00
AzoogleAds – $288.00
Amazon.com – $187.58
Neverblue – $27.00
Other Affiliate Programs – $188.75

Total Revenue – $2,825.57

Total expenses – $1,317.14

Total Income – $1,508.16

You never know what’s going to happen month to month. All you can do is keep plugging away and focus on the things that work and trash the things that don’t. Forward is the only direction to go in the affiliate marketing game. Remember, things can turn around in a single day, or even just a few hours.

Popularity: 12% [?]

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26
Jan

Sound The Alarm, BANS Is Dead! Oh Really?

Occasionally I see blog posts declaring the death of Build A Niche Store (BANS) and receive comments on the blog here predicting the same. Many times when this happens I head over to the BANS forums expecting to see Hiroshima type devastation and read about all its users calling for some of Obama’s stimulus handouts. Funny though, that just doesn’t seem to be the case.

What I do find is BANS users complaining somewhat about Google’s unfairness (who doesn’t complaining about that?), but an equal or larger amount of users gleeful about new records their network of stores or usually just one or two stores are setting month after month. At least once a week some new user testifies about making it into the $1,000 per month club (Not a real club, just a serious achievement users like to point to) or some other record such as $2,000, $3,000 or $4,000 per month. Apparently BANS users making $500 to $4,000 per month don’t realize it’s no longer a good way to make money.

Where there is a problem with BANS there is a problem with just about anything else you do on the Internet. Saying BANS is dead because of what is happening to a few users is like saying WordPress is dead, or Amazon is dead, or Azoogle, Neverblue and Pepperjam are dead. Just because some affiliates spam forums, build horrid looking sites, misrepresent products or steal commissions and gets caught doesn’t mean whatever affiliate programs or tools they’re using is dead. It means those affiliates need to get into and understand, really understand the game or get out and work in a cubicle or go flip burgers for a living.

On the other hand, yes, BANS is dead. It is dead for those that put up crummy sites that have nothing but auctions, pages and pages of auctions with no content. It is dead for those that build one site with nothing but auctions and expect to get accepted into eBay’s affiliate program. It is dead for those affiliates that create 20 sites that have 1 paragraph on the home page and nothing else. It is dead for those that build a site with every category and try to make it look just like eBay. It is dead for those that build sites with 30 different categories totally unrelated to each other. How anyone can believe they can throw up, in other words, barf out, a BANS site with zero content and make money is beyond me. Have you not been reading the news that Google wants relevant and useful information in its index?

Get a grip, how do you feel when you run across crap sites when you’re looking for something? And you want visitors to your equally crappy BANS site to spend more than 1 second window shopping at your Expensive-Watches-With-No-Content-And-An-Ugly-Header.com website. Am I missing something here? Google certainly isn’t.

If you want to build a business on the net and are committed to putting together a quality portal with information for visitors in your particular niche then Build A Niche Store is still for you. However, if you just want to make a quick buck and plan on creating a network of spammy BANS sites to match your splog network, please, don’t clog up the system.

Popularity: 12% [?]

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