Making Money Without Even Trying

Traffic and sales patterns on the net never cease to amaze me. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try you just can’t get something to work, even if you keep tweaking it and keep turning the dials. On the other hand when you have enough going on in your affiliate business, there are times you can make money without even trying. I love it when that happens.

As an example, I’ve been working on a system that gives a better focus to my ppc marketing where I can just find a good traffic source, then find an offer, plug in a few keywords and there’s another campaign working. About one out of every six or seven of these campaigns really make any money. But the other day I had one that I just knew would work. If you’ve been in affiliate marketing for any length of time, you know those ideas I’m talking about, the ones you are sure will generate lots of income.

Well, I worked on this ppc campaign for several day and sent over 2,000 clicks to the merchant at 5 cents per click or less and didn’t get a single sale. I was shocked to say the least because in my mind, it was a near certainty this campaign would work. But it didn’t generate even one cent of revenue. However, the same day I decided to let this one go, in came a sale from an old site on air compressors I hadn’t touched in more than a year. My commission for doing nothing was $40.

This is bizarre because stuff like this happens more often than you would think. Having enough niches out there generating a trickle of traffic to each site brings in additional commissions from furniture sales, chandelier sales, home decor, fitness equipment, travel and more. Probably 3 or 4 times a year I get a check in the mail from ReserveBranson.com for between $30 and $50. It’s not a lot, but it’s really nice when you’ve forgotten about it and you’re not expecting it at all. We usually take that money and go out for a nice dinner or something and celebrate that we just got paid for doing nothing.

Of course, you do realize you’re not really getting paid for doing nothing, it just seems like that. Over the last 4 to 5 years I’ve built up enough sites in enough niches that these unexpected, make money for doing nothing sales and checks are showing up more frequently. If you keep persevering in your affiliate career, this will eventually happen to you as well and you’ll get a check in the mail someday you weren’t expecting at all.

No matter how much money I go on to make in affiliate marketing, it will always be a beautiful thing when an unexpected $35 check shows up in the mail.

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Give Your Affiliate Business The High Five!

The following is a guest post by Jim from theNetFool.com. He writes a popular blog that is all about how to make money online, especially in a down economy. So check it out if you are interested!

Affiliate businesses are all over the internet.  Lots and lots of people are now profiting from doing business across the internet… whether as wholesalers, retailers, or affiliate marketers. Unlimited income can be earned from affiliate marketing. As an affiliate marketer, you and the product or service merchant share in the revenues from any sale or visit that you originate. There are several ways by which an affiliate marketer can earn from his business:  pay per click, pay per sale, and pay per lead. An affiliate marketer can do any one or all of these types of affiliate marketing to earn loads of money.

Not all affiliate marketing programs are guaranteed to be successful… and affiliate marketing is not all about the numbers. Oftentimes, affiliate marketing is advertised as an easy way to make profits. Being “easy” does not mean that you just let things be, and just do the minimum that is required of you. An easy and, more importantly, efficient way to earn from affiliate marketing is to do it strategically. Give your affiliate marketing business the Net Fool “High Five” with these strategic marketing tips on making money on your online business:

  1. Choose your affiliate partner carefully. 
    There is a huge amount of money to be earned in the internet – both legitimate and illegitimate.  You would not want to besmirch your site’s reputation by affiliating your site with a merchant that is bogus. Make sure that the affiliate program you are joining is reputable. Go for those programs that have customer service centers or affiliate support programs. It would also be good to be able to actually talk to a representative from the company offering the program to ensure that you are dealing with a real company and with real employees.
  2. Review your 3 Ps.
    There are 3 Ps in marketing namely:  product, price, and promotions. Your affiliate program should be for a great product that is reliable. It should be a product that is actually proven to deliver what it claims it can do or result in. The price range should be reasonable, although not necessarily cheap since large ticket items would most definitely have expensive price tags. There has to be an incentive for your site visitors to click on a merchant’s link. A promotional link versus a static link would enjoy more clicks.
  3. Write relevant articles.
    This works like public relations. Articles that do not directly sell the products that you are advertising but tell readers about the advantages of purchasing such products in general terms will tweak the readers’ fancy and would most likely prompt them to click on the links. And, since your article was able to convince the reader of the benefits of the product you are selling, the chances of that particular reader buying are higher.
  4. Choose a tiered affiliate program.
    Tiered affiliate programs give you more earnings in pretty much every circumstance. Aside from earning from the products sold from those linking from your site, you also earn from the earnings of the recruits of your recruits and so forth.
  5. Opt for higher commissions.
    Commissions from affiliate marketing programs differ depending on the type of program you choose. Revenue sharing can be anywhere from 10% to 75%. That’s a lot of in-betweens. To maximize your income earning potential, choose marketable products that have higher commissions.

When looking to affiliate yourself with any of the programs in the internet, keep in mind your High Five. Instead of wasting your time joining all affiliate programs that come your way, rationalize your affiliate marketing activities. These strategic marketing tips can help focus you on programs that really deliver and give your affiliate marketing business’ earning potential a boost.

-The Net Fool

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Big Plans Gone Bust?

Bummer DudeHave you ever had really big plans for something in affiliate marketing and then had it completely go south on you? Have you maybe even been making some money in a niche and started to make plans to ramp it up and all of a sudden your revenue drops like a rock before you get the chance to scale?

If you’ve been doing business as an affiliate for any length of time this may have happened to you, maybe even more than once. It happened to me in the apartment rentals niche about a year ago as I was planning to ramp things up considerably based on some very good results I was having with Apartments.com. I was making in the area of $200 to $250 per month producing leads for them at $10 each and getting one of those leads for about every 50 clicks I sent their way. Then they redesigned their landing pages about a year ago and I now produce a lead for every 200 clicks sent their way.

I’m not sure what happened there, but I was no longer able to send traffic directly to an email form that actually produced the lead. Apartments.com changed their landing pages to include a small email form on each page of an individual apartments set of pages and the conversion rate dropped by 75%. Couple that with the fact that my traffic had dropped by a little as the season changed, and I went from making an average of $225 per month promoting apartments to about $20 to $30 per month making it hardly worth the effort to continue to work in this niche.

The larger plan I was seeing was to develop a big site devoted to apartment rentals for a specific niche of renters all over the nation. In looking at Google Analytics stats for my apartment sites I could see that there is an overwhelmingly higher percentage of renters in a very specific market and I had plans to exploit that to its fullest. While that idea is still on the back burner of things I would like to do in affiliate marketing, after the bust, the steam kind of went out of my idea. But the good news is, Rent.com has just revamped their affiliate program and is now paying 20 cents per registered visitor and $25 to $70 per confirmed lease, so the big plan for an apartment rental site is a little closer to reality once again.

So what’s the whole point of this discussion?

Don’t play the single affiliate program game and get yourself stuck in the position of relying on only one source of income from one or even two programs. While I took a $200 per month hit a year or so ago, it was just another day in the life of an affiliate marketer. Sometimes I do look back at all the things I’ve made money from and thought if I could only get these at the level they once were, all at the same time I’d be making $6,000 or $7,000 per month. Yes, that would be great, but what I’m really thankful for is the programs that have been in place to cover for the ones that all-of-a-sudden decided to take a dive.

You will go for a ride on the ups and downs of affiliate marketing if you stay with the game long enough. The best thing to do is have a diverse selection of niches and programs to work with that will act as shock absorbers when the ride gets bumpy. Check out my Make Money Online page for the variety of networks and programs I use to earn a living.

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The Character Building Qualities Of Launching Your Own Internet Business

This is a guest post from Richard Adams at No More Compromise

Starting your own Internet business isn’t just necessarily good for your wallet – it can also be an experience in personal development of the best possible kind in which you develop new or existing qualities.

Here are just a small sample of the character-building benefits you may experience as a result of starting your own business…

1) Resilience

More often than not it will take weeks if not months for a new Internet entrepreneur to start earning money online. *Significant* figures can take even longer so one’s ability to stick it out and to refuse to give up despite the lack of results is a real test of whether you are likely to succeed. As Thomas Edison said “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up”.

2) Self Confidence

You’ll only manage to keep chipping away at building your business for so long unless you have real confidence in your own abilities to succeed online and the fire to make it happen.

3) Discipline

This is where a lot of people come unstuck. They’re passionate and confident, but when it comes down to it, they can’t actually motivate themselves to do what they know they need to do. It’s just too much hassle. It’s easier just to make a weak excuse and flip the TV on.

Successful entrepreneurs are different. They *make* themselves work. The *find* ways to motivate themselves. And they’re proactive at getting things done and seeing the results.

4) Willingness To Listen

Advice, both from other experienced marketers on what they think you should be doing, and from customers on what they’d like to see from you, provide real direction for your business if you’re willing to keep your eyes and ears open. This sort of feedback and constructive criticism can make a huge difference to your bottom line.

5) Strong Work Ethic

Very few people become successful in any area of life without significant hard work before they got there. So get used to it, and get on with it. There’s no way round it.

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Make Money Online With These Money Makers

Make Money OnlineIf you haven’t noticed, there’s a new link at the top of Affiliate Confession leading to my Make Money Online page. This page covers nearly every affiliate program, affiliate network and even some individual systems I use to make money on the web. I don’t go into every individual affiliate program, because there are several in a few networks such as CJ. In fact, there are 27 different merchants I’m an affiliate of through CJ and at one time or another I’ve probably made a little money with roughly 75% of them.

I get several questions asking me what I do, or how I make money, or what affiliate programs I’m a part of, so to hopefully alleviate some of those questions I decided to put up the new page. I go into a little explanation of most of the programs I’m involved with and provide a link to that merchant. Unfortunately, one of my better merchants, TripAdvisor.com, no longer is accepting new affiliates. A couple of months ago they must have increased their payout because I started earning nearly double what I had previously earned without actually doing any more work or getting that much more traffic. Maybe they decided to pay their present affiliates more and not take on additional ones for right now.

It will be interesting to see what happens to my CJ income since eBay has switched over to the eBay Partner Network and now runs their own program. eBay was my biggest earner at Commission Junction to the tune of about 60% of my earnings there. But the EPN is looking real good at the present time and I’m seeing some very nice commissions reported so far. I also like that EPN is updating commissions early in the morning for the previous day rather than CJ taking 1 or 2 days at times for an update.

Anyway, check out the money makers page to see the merchants and affiliate programs that have been working for me. I’ll keep the page updated as I add new ones.

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