This guide to affiliate marketing for beginners comes from Michael Benkovich, who’s been making a living online since 2007 from a variety of projects including an anatomy course and even a carpet cleaning site. Throughout that time he has developed skills in everything from affiliate marketing to product creation.
Starting with simple projects a decade ago he managed to move on to larger and larger businesses, culminating this year when he sold his largest business to date.
This guide doesn’t cover any of the complexities of that process. Instead it gives you a clear roadmap for getting started and shows you exactly how you can make your first few hundred dollars online.
You’re gonna love it. Take it away, Mike!
Getting started making money online is as easy as following a few steps — steps that I’m going to outline for you in this how-to guide.
What you’ll learn is a step by step process that is all but guaranteed to make you a couple of hundred dollars per month via affiliate marketing.
The setup is minimal and once things are flowing it really is as close to passive income as you can get.
But before we get to that…
Who I Am And Why I’m Worth Listening To
To be completely honest with you, as Internet marketing gurus go, I’m a nobody. You won’t find anything about me on Google, I have no social media presence and no blog.
Truth is, for every Neil Patel, there are hundreds of anonymous people making a living online. The only difference is we have no personal brand and nothing to promote.
Why am I telling you this?
It’s simple! I have very little to gain by giving away my method other than the fun of sharing it. I hope that instills some trust in my advice.
The process I’m going to teach you is exactly how I got started 9 years ago. Since then I’ve traded my way up in business size. I moved from affiliate marketing to creating digital products. From there I launched my own agency then moved into creating software.
It all culminated this year when I sold my largest business to date and am now enjoying a mini-retirement.
In short, I’m nobody special and if I can do it so can you.
See? Here’s me with my 3 favorite things: hummus, falafel, and juggling.
Proof My Affiliate Marketing Method Works
Before I break down the method let me tell you how it came about and how I used it to trade my way up to larger projects.
In 2008 I first became interested in affiliate marketing. I attended a “make money online” seminar run by some sleazy internet marketer. The seminar was a total scam (nothing but upsells) but it piqued my curiosity enough to keep digging. It wasn’t long until I stumbled across a method that worked.
I know what you’re thinking… “Michael, why are you talking about 2008. The internet has changed and nothing that worked back then will work today”.
I deny that, and can prove it.
In April 2017 a friend asked for my help getting started in affiliate marketing. Below are his results so far by using this technique:
Nick’s Notes: This screenshot was taken in mid-December, so you can project out what the full-month might look like.
In less than 6 months his website was making around $200/month. Not bad for a complete noob who knew nothing about affiliate marketing.
You see, good marketing never goes out of fashion.
Imagine you did this 5 times to generate $1000/month. That’s what I did and it gave me the leeway and funds to invest in more significant projects and build a business.
Who Is This Method For?
Those looking for their first side hustle or just starting in affiliate marketing will find the most value here.
If you have advanced marketing skills or already have something in the pipeline with potential don’t get distracted with this. Keep chugging away and kick some goals with your current project.
If, however, you’ve tried and failed a few times or don’t know where to start then this guide is for you. It will help get ‘learn the ropes’ and get started with your first affiliate marketing side hustle.
Convinced? OK, Let’s Get Down To It
You’ll be building a small affiliate site that generates revenue via one product line. Specifically, you’ll create content around reviews and information on the product.
I call it a ‘niche product affiliate site’.
Unlike an authority site (huge market, like “weight loss”) or a niche site (niche within a market, like “lose belly fat”) a product affiliate site has a hyper narrow focus.
You won’t have to do much convincing for people to buy the product. Instead you’ll be the last link in the chain and will be driving buying traffic for people who already know about it.
The plus side is that the competition is low and conversions super high.
I’m going to run you through everything step by step. If you follow this guide I see no reason why you can’t be generating a couple of hundred dollars per month.
I’ll cover the following:
- Finding a market
- Finding a product to promote
- Validating the product
- Building the website
- How to come up with content ideas
- Marketing The Site
Do Small Affiliate Marketing Sites Still Work?
I understand the concern.
There’s a stigma around small sites and concerns that they’ll be punished by Google.
In my opinion small sites aren’t the problem. Crappy sites are the problem!
The real problem is that many people are simply too lazy to do this properly. They cut corners, do a bad job and then complain when they get punished by Google.
Don’t be one of those people!
I’m not advocating building low quality sites. I’m advocating building high quality sites with a very narrow focus and hyper targeted audience.
Google wants to deliver the best content it can to its users. Be the provider of that content.
For This Guide, Let’s Look at a Test Market
I would love to show you the actual site I’ve been working on with my friend, but I know that story ends with a boatload of competitors — and I’d like to stay friends.
For that reason I’m going to build the case study around a market that I’m not involved with.
1. Find a Market
Selecting the right product is the most important part of the process.
You need to select a product that’s in a market with high demand. I can’t tell you which market to enter but I would encourage you to select one you’re interested in. It will make the process more tolerable.
Start high-level before exploring the market for a product to promote. To do this, use Google trends.
Trends is an awesome free tool that will show you search volume over time.
After some brainstorming I came across the term ‘Nootropics’. Nootropics are supplements that enhance brain function.
The Trends data for the last 5 years shows an increase in searches. Last year was a little flat but there is still a huge demand:
This looks like a good market to enter.
Nick’s Notes: My interpretation of Google Trends is that it shows relative search interest over time, not necessarily raw search volume. But it makes it easy to see if interest is increasing or decreasing over time.
Consider The Piggyback Principal, in which you try to “piggyback” on the popularity of another product, service, or trend.
2. Find a Product to Promote
The next step is to find a product to promote.
Type the following into Google (or whatever keyword you found in Step 1):
- best nootropics products
- compare nootropics products
- top 10 nootropics
Spend some time researching the products that are out there. Add the most commonly mentioned products to a spreadsheet as you go to keep track.
Once you find a few products that look promising go back to Google Trends and compare them all. What you’re looking for is a product that has an upward trajectory.
For example, in the Nootropics market, I found ‘Mind Lab Pro’ whose data looks like this.
There is an upward trajectory in search volume for this product name. Very promising!
Double check the product itself has some direct demand by using Google’s Keyword Planner tool. This tool gives you data on exactly how many people search for a specific keyword.
Type in the <product name> as well as ‘<product name> review’ to see how much search volume there is. Here’s the data for Mind Lab Pro:
If you’ve never run an Adwords campaign before you will receive a range. In this case 1K – 10K. If you have active campaigns running (which I don’t) you will see a specific number.
I never fixate too much on exact numbers. If there are at least 1000 monthly searches that is more than enough demand to move on to the next step.
Nick’s Notes: Keep in mind the “Competition” score inside the Keyword Planner is for advertisers, not necessarily for SEO — though it stands to reason that “high” competition paid keywords are likely highly competitive in the organic listings too, and vice versa.
If you’re stuck, I also compiled a giant list of the best affiliate programs here.
3. Validate The Product
We’ve discovered a product that has plenty of interest, but that’s only the first piece of the puzzle.
Do some further validation on the product to make sure its worth your while to promote it via a website.
Make Sure There’s an Affiliate Program
Simply Google ‘<product name> affiliate’ and see what comes up. I prefer to promote products that have their own affiliate programs rather than one through a 3rd party website.
The exception might be if they sell on Amazon and you can use the Amazon Associates Program.
Nick’s Notes: I don’t have any issue with a third party affiliate network, so don’t let that deter you if the company runs their affiliate program through Shareasale, CJ, Rakuten, or others.
Make Sure the Payout is Decent
You don’t want to be making all this effort for $1 or $2 per sale. Try to find a product that is going to pay you at least $10/sale or more. For my friend’s site that’s earning $200 a month, he receives between $5 and $30 per sale.
Nick’s Notes: Unless it’s a really high-priced product, $10 per sale is going to be tough if you’re relying on Amazon Associates, due to the average 4% commission rate.
Make Sure the Product is Legit
The last thing you want to do is promote a dodgy product so I try to make sure it has a solid track record.
Jump over to Google and search for ‘<product name> scam’ and see what’s being said.
If it looks legitimate, has been around for a while and is well-reviewed then you’re good to go.
Check the Organic Competition
Your goal is to rank for ‘review’ and information type keywords related to the product. Head over to Google and search for ‘<product name> review’.
If you see a bunch of high authority websites ranking you may want to avoid the market. However, if you see a lot of other affiliate websites, the product’s own website or low quality pages then you’re golden.
Nick’s Notes: You can use the free Mozbar Chrome extension to help gauge the competitiveness of the top 10 results. In my conversation with Joseph Hogue on SEO for bloggers, he said if the average of the top 10 had a PA (Page Authority) of 25-35 or below, you’ve got a good shot at ranking for that keyword if you can write a great resource.
Here’s what the results for “mind lab pro review” look like:
The PA is the first number underneath the search results, and based on these results, it doesn’t seem horribly competitive. The average of these first 9 results is 24.67.
If your product doesn’t fit any of the above criteria then go back to the drawing board and look for something else.
For Mind Lab Pro everything looks good. We now have our product! Let’s move on to building the website.
Related: For more on building out authoritative review sites, check out my interview with Robert Brandl, the founder of ToolTester.net.
4. Build the Website
Now this is where the rubber hits the road and you start building things. If you’ve never built a website before, have no fear as Nick’s free tutorial will walk you through the process step-by-step.
The first thing you’ll need is a domain name, like SideHustleNation.com, your home “address” online.
Choose a Domain Name
I prefer to register a domain name that looks like the following:
In this case, it would be something like mindlabproreview.com.
Important Note: Some companies will not allow the use of their product name in the URL as part of their terms. (Check the affiliate program terms and conditions.)
If that’s the case it’s not a cause for concern. Try to come up with a variant that doesn’t infringe on the trademark. For example:
My philosophy is to shoot first and ask questions later. You can always buy a new domain and 301 redirect it if the company doesn’t like it.
I was once approached by a company to change the URL but was able to negotiate with them to keep it after convincing them of the positive image it portrayed to the company.
Nick’s Notes: You can actually get your domain name registration free (normally $10-15/year) when you sign up to host your website through Bluehost.
What About Google’s Exact Match Penalty?
Again, Google doesn’t want to punish good sites. They want to punish crappy sites!
EVERY domain name is an exact match for something. Focus on building a quality website and keep the keywords within the domain targeted to the content of the site.
The website is one of the most important parts of this side hustle, but I won’t go into the specifics of how to build the site here. Nick has a great write up on how to launch your own website cheaply.
That being said here is some additional advice when building the site.
Have a Logo Designed
Don’t use generic text for your logo. Instead, hop on over to Fiverr and have a custom logo created. It’s a minimal investment and will make the site look more professional.
Nick’s Notes: Definitely an inexpensive way to build trust.
I use the Avada theme as it allows virtually unlimited variations. My layouts usually look something like this:
Nick’s Notes: The library of free and premium themes is one of the best reasons to go with WordPress. After your Bluehost account is set up, they’ll walk you through a theme installation on your new site.
Don’t Go Crazy with the Affiliate Links
It can be tempting to splatter your affiliate links all over the site. Try to avoid this trap if you can as it makes the site look cheap.
Instead, place a few affiliate links in obvious places rather than everywhere.
This is the part where a lot of people get stuck.
That’s because they procrastinate over the little details. Remember there is no such thing as perfect other than in your own mind. An imperfect site launched is better than a perfect one unlaunched.
Nick’s Notes: Amen to that! Remember Reid Hoffman’s (founder of LinkedIn) quote: “If you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.”
5. Create Killer Content
Good quality content is the life blood of any website. Here I outline a bunch of ideas to generate content that will drive traffic.
You should ensure you only place very high quality content on the site. Don’t simply rehash some ‘me too’ content around the product. Make the review your own, give it a personal touch and a story to go along with it.
On a very basic level you should ensure your website has the following pages:
- Homepage – Review the product. Make this at least 2000 words and include images and video.
- About Me – Describe yourself and why you are writing about the product.
- FAQ – Source questions from forums about the product and place them here.
- Customer Reviews – Collate reviews from around the web, Rotten Tomatoes-style.
- Contact Me
- Blog or News
- Discount Coupon Page
5 Ways to Generate More Content Ideas
1. Buy the Product
If you are reviewing the product it only makes sense to go and buy it first.
This will give you a lot of ways to create further content by way of images and videos. On top of that you will actually be able to write a REAL review, which sadly most affiliate websites don’t do.
2. The “Alphabet Auto Suggest” Method
Use Google auto suggest and type in the product name followed by each letter of the alphabet. For example
- <product name> a
- <product name> b
- etc. for every letter
See what suggestions are thrown back at you. Create pages around the ones that look relevant.
Nick’s Notes: Check out UberSuggest and AnswerThePublic for more.
3. The “vs” Method
Type the following into Google:
- <product name> vs
You’ll be presented with a whole list of products to compare yours to.
Go ahead and create a page based around each of these and let Google do its thing.
In my experience these are the pages most likely to be shared on social media. Be sure to do a good job of them by using images, ratings, videos, and comparison tables.
Nick’s Notes: I’ve been using the free Table Maker plugin to build comparison tables.
4. The “Google Search Console” Method
If you’ve done everything right you should start to receive your first trickle of traffic after a couple of months. My next method for generating content ideas is to use Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools).
It will show you not only the traffic you are getting clicks on, but the traffic you may be showing up for and getting impressions on. Often times these will be semi-relevant to the content you already have on the site.
Go down the list and look for search queries you are receiving impressions for, but the ranking is very low. Then, create a page of content targeting that keyword specifically.
The keywords marked in RED above are good candidates. The site is not ranking well but the impression count is very high. That means there are a lot of search and even a slight ranking improvement should increase traffic.
Nick’s Notes: I was able to increase search traffic 24% just with some simple tweaks inspired by the Google Search Console reports.
5. The “Ask a Question” Method
Create a page on your website that invites people to ask you questions. You can add a special contact form on this page. You will be surprised at how often people will fill this out if they want more information.
Then, every time someone asks a question use the question to create a new page on your site, or add it to your FAQ page.
Nick’s Notes: You could even encourage people to ask questions via a live chat widget … which you could just set to offline when you’re not available.
6. Market the Site
By this stage you have a solid website up with useful content that Google will love.
Now, I firmly believe that the best way to attract visitors is through keyword research and quality content. If you create a high quality site Google will reward you in time by increasing your rankings as you receive more visitors.
That said, it never hurts to give things a little push.
To begin marketing the site do the following:
- Submit the sitemap to Google Search Console.
- Go to Fiverr and find a gig that will setup and pre-fill social profiles.
- Leave comments on several blogs in the niche.
- Make your posts easily shareable on Facebook and Twitter.
Remember we are just trying to do the basics here. Assuming your content is good and useful the site will rank in Google, particularly the informative stuff like the vs. pages.
Asking how to market a website is a little like asking ‘how long is a piece of string?’ I could go on for days and go through common link building methods, but that’s a little beyond the scope of this post.
If you would like to know more please leave me a question in the comments and I’ll be sure to answer it as thoroughly as possible.
Timeline and Roadmap
My recommendation is to continually add your content and marketing over 3 months. The simplicity of this method means that you won’t have to spend a lot of time on it.
In my friend’s case he worked on the site for 4 months for no more than 2 hours per week. Since then he has spent less than an hour per month on the site adding content based on questions received via the “Ask a Question” method above.
If you follow the outline above you will have a revenue-producing asset within a few months.
As a guide this is the traffic volume to his website from April until today. You can see he now regularly receives over 100 visitors per day.
So there you have it folks! This is a tried and true method for building a successful niche product affiliate site. It won’t make you millions but it’s a good method to get started on your path to success.
What do you think?
Do you have any suggestions, comments or concerns about what I’ve outlined above? If so please share your thoughts in the comments and I’ll be sure to answer them.
57 thoughts on “Affiliate Marketing for Beginners: Earn $200/Month with this Stupidly Simple Step-by-Step Guide”
what if I have scored from Moz 30 / 100 (so is easy) but for first page, I have Amazon at first and second place, then couple blogs and Etsy page, is this niche hard?
I don’t really have enough information to determine if it’s a difficult niche. Generally, I wouldn’t consider what you’ve described to be anything too difficult.
I thought this was really good. Very easy to understand and a quick read. Great for anyone who wants to do affiliate marketing.
Fantastic post. Thanks for all the good info. I’m excited to think on this a few days and see where my brain takes me!!
After you got all that down, all that’s left is driving traffic to your site. Sadly SEO takes a while and social traffic is unreliable. Do you have any tips?
Hmm. Be patient or get better at social. :)
what about vlogs? I’ve done a few practice videos and friends have asked me to continue. I’m showing ebay and other online store products by virtue of price comparisons, selection, etc. Same process for finding affiliates?
SEO does take a while but this is why your keyword research is very important. If you provide good quality content around keywords with minimal competition the rankings will come in less time.
Unfortunately, as with anything worth doing there are no quick fixes. You just gotta get in there and do it with faith that it will turn out well in the end.
You could always target purchase intent traffic using low CPC keywords on adwords. That way you’re at the top of of the SERPs within minutes at pennies per click. You landign must be very clear and deliberate in what you want the user to do though i.e. take some form of action. Might want to check out CPA marketing also.
Great walk-through. Would think this strategy would also be a good way to market your own Amazon FBA products. A little more mfg and logistics work but you get all the proceeds from sales. Just a handful of these organic sales from your site each month can rank your products for organic sales on Amazon.
You might want to include a link to some page explaining Google Search Console set up for a site.
Great post with great info thanks for that.
Do you focus your efforts usually on digital or physical products?
You gave your friend’s example, could you tell how many pages of content he had on the website for December figures?
And an idea of how long each article is. Like 1,000 words or 5,000 words or so?
I appreciate the kind works Eddie :)
Most times I’ve done this I’ve promoted a physical product. Not for any particular reason other than I usually find these fit all of the criteria.
Digital products (such as the ones sold through Clickbank) can have high commissions but this also breeds a lot of competition with people using similar methods to the one I’ve described. That can make it harder to generate traffic. But, of course, if you can manage it the pay off will be higher.
My friends page has 28 pages of content. 90% of his traffic comes from the ‘ review’ keyword to the homepage and 2 blog pages. Just so happens 2 of his ‘vs’ pages receive a lot of traffic. He is not #1 for any keyword. What I’m trying to say is it’s achievable without going crazy!
The article length varies. Some are over 2000 words other are only 300 words. It’s always changing though. For example, one of his ‘Ask a question’ pages received about 150 visitors last month with only 300 words. As he is ranked in position #5 he will go in and expand the page to a longer word count in an effort to improve the ranking.
I do like #5. The “ask a question” method. I’d like to see how this really works. Anyone else doing this? Good informative post.
It’s hit and miss. Sometimes it will achieve nothing and sometimes you’ll find a diamond or two.
For example, last month we published a page generated using the ‘Ask a question’ method and it’s received 150 visitors already. That’s showing some serious promise of a page that by itself could bring in $XX per month for the site. That’s the hit! We have posted 6 others that drive almost no traffic at all. Therein lies the miss!
When it comes to this sort of stuff that’s how the game is played :)
Excellent. Thank you for sharing. I had two questions:
1) You mention “Collate reviews from around the web”. Could you please explain that a bit more? Are you attributing the reviews or linking to them? Or how are you quoting, summarizing, or aggregating them?
2) Finding product ideas is the tough one for me, especially that give a $10+ payout per referral sale. Do you have other tips or is there more information about that in another SH episode?
Hi David, why not look at say flexoffers who run affiliate schemes for all sorts of products and look for products or services that appeal to you or your personal experience.
Maybe you will find a handful of suitable products to promote
Thanks for the kind words and taking the time to ask a question.
1) Think of a movie page for RottenTomatoes or Metacritic where they simply list a short blurb from each reviewer, their individual scores and then an overall score. Try to recreate something that achieves that effect. I don’t link out to the reviews but will add the URL to each in plain text.
2) I understand this can be difficult. My solution is, like any skill, you have to practice, practice, practice! Set yourself a task today to find 10 markets that show growing demand in Google trends. Just the broad market, eg. running. For the next 10 days, each day find 10 niche’s for 1 of the markets, eg. ultra marathon running. After 11 days you will have over 100 niche markets to explore for products. Go from there.
Rik gives good advice in that you can find a network and look through the products there. The downside of this is that many other affiliates do the same thing so those products can be tougher to generate traffic for.
Come to think of it, that’s probably why I like to promote products with their own affiliate program. The competition is inherently lower due to the low exposure of their program.
THanks for the awesome tutorial! I have a couple of questions:
1. I’m in Canada and trends look very good for the product I’m thinking about. I could more easily promote a Canadian affiliate link with my network, but I don’t want to miss out on the American traffic. Any ideas?
2. Can I have more than one affiliate link for the same product on my site? Eg a link for people who want to buy off amazon (say because they have prime) and another that links to the manufacturer or some other affiliate for people who want to buy direct (or don’t care where they buy from). My concern is that more people will want to buy from amazon but the commission is lower.
Love the attitude!
1. Is there nowhere to promote it within USA? The US is going to bring the lions share of traffic for most products so I’d prioritize promoting to them above anything. If you prefer the Canadian network because the payouts are higher/you have a relationship with them/whatever then you can Geo target your affiliate link. That will send Canadian traffic to your CA link and American traffic to your US link.
2. You could try testing which links generate more revenue and then decide which ones to include. Amazon might have a lower commission but if they convert higher you still might be better off using them. If your traffic is low it might take you a while to get any statistical significance though.
Michael, great article–lots of good solid ideas to get my affiliate (& my rear end), up and at it!! Also, love those falafels too! I am in the process of building a website that will have approximately 8-10 products offered over time. The products all come from the same niche. Do you think this type of site can have good success as well, or do you think just focusing on one product per website is the way to go?
I look forward to your thoughts on this. Thanks to you and Nick!!
Thanks for the comment Donna.
A site with 8-10 products would produce a better asset and likely more revenue in the end if everything is done right. If you have a bit of knowledge, the right attitude and a little previous success then that would be my recommendation.
My guide is more for those who don’t know where to start and are just looking to get a few points on the scoreboard.
I’ve read this post and I truly appreciate the information and honesty you have provided. The problem I have is that I’ve done ALL of this and more and yet I have a hard time generating traffic. I think that is one thing that is never emphasized in these posts and don’t genuinely express that it is just that (traffic) and lots of it, that brings in any kind of interest, little own an income. I don’t know what else I could be doing at this point besides not continuously working at the marketing, but I am. If someone could shed a little light on this because this post makes it sound so easy so I wonder what I’m doing wrong or what is the information that is missing in these posts? Either way thanks for the candid guidance!
Hi Makayla – I know it can be frustrating starting out but you’ve already taken the hard steps! You’ll get there.
Is your site the one linked to in your comment? If so it’s a nice site but a little different to what I’m describing here so it’s a bit hard for me to give too much guidance.
Do this well and refine your process and there’s no limit to how many sites you could juggle to get a decent passive-ish income.
Great info and definitely helps some feel like the entry level is a lot closer than they thought.
Thank you for your lovely comment Skyler. I also appreciated your subtle mention of juggling (my favourite thing)
Hi. Great article. But doesn’t one need to have a email list to promote?
Sure! Having an email list is a valuable asset. In fact, the next stage in the building of this site would be to have some sort of optin form to build emails.
Remember, this is a method for those who are just starting out. The advice is actionable and very specific. Of course you can always do more but I tried to keep the focus narrow so as not to overwhelm people with options.
Thanks for the in depth article. I’ve been online for over 10 years and learned some new tidbits to try in my next hustle. Quick question: What about having an exact-match-domain name? I’ve heard that Google is now penalizing these. Thanks!
Mike touched on this a bit in the article, explaining that the “exact match penalty” targeted low quality sites that were overly-reliant on their seemingly-relevant domain name for rankings. Everything is an exact match for something so if you build a great resource, it shouldn’t be an issue. (For instance, I get a ton of search traffic for “side hustle nation”…)
Oh, okay – Thanks Nick! Missed that! Good to know.
The product you mentionned “Mind lab pro” looks like a recurrent product that a single person would buy. What about products that are being bought just one time? Do you approach them differently?
do you actually run an adword campaing or not
Nope and I wouldn’t bother with that for this type of site. Strictly SEO
Cheers for this one guys! A side hustle to add to my side hustles! Now to pick a niche….hmm…
cheers for keeping my brain ticking anyway gents, even though I may now be up all night with keyword-insomnia! Much appreciated!
This is some really meaty tips! I like your honesty and the fact that you seem to do things a bit different than most. I guess it’s a matter of testing to see what works for you. On a lighter note, I’m still grappling with some cognitive dissonance here. I can’t believe you don’t have any social media presence and yet you are doing well online.
Howdy Sheeroh! Sorry for the late response as I have not checked in on the post for a while.
Thank you for the kind words. When it comes to social media I find the cost vs benefit simply isn’t worth it for me. It’s a time sink and distraction from doing other far more rewarding things with my time.
Thank you so much for sharing this, Michael! It’s totally gotten me inspired to start. Could you clarify what you mean with this step: Go to Fiverr and find a gig that will setup and pre-fill social profiles. Does that just mean get someone to create a FB/Twitter profile for your site, or is it more involved? Thanks again!
You pretty much have it right although its more than just Twitter and FB. Many people will create 30+ accounts for you for just $5. You wont use most of them but I have found the links from the accounts have a benefit when things are just getting started without having to resort to too many nefarious SEO tactics.
I was seeing a huge mountain ahead and then I read your post. Many thanks for covering basic principles (for you!) so clearly. Some Qs if I may:
1. My site is called smallbizjuice.com. Does it make sense to change it to smallbusinessxyz.com given I’m targeting small business long-tail KW searches? Or is it a better strategy to create a mini-site for each product I want to monetise like you suggest in your article?
2. What Ahrefs difficulty score corresponds to MOZ’s 25-35 or below?
3. How should I split my time between article writing, backlink generation and social promotion?
4. What activity should I most prioritise to build backlinks?
Apologies in advance for being so needy!
Hi Eddie! You have a nice looking site there I’d keep doing what you’re doing.
I don’t know you but just from your comment I think you’re over thinking things by asking such specifics. In other words don’t get bogged down on the details. Get to work, try as many things as you can if you have some success then double down. That’s why I like my method if you’re just getting started. It simplifies things.
For example. How should you split your time as asked in question 3? I have no idea! What have you tried, what worked so far? You’ll know the answer better than any one else.
Good luck :)
Hai, thanks Micheal for the interesting post. really an eye opening to me. I’ve done niche sites before without much success.
Just curious, how do you come out with ideas for the site contents or blog post? do you work around the product keywords??
Read the whole article! I give several examples in the second half. :)
This is so valuable. Thank you for all the detail.
One thing you didn’t mention is adverts on the site. Would you add adverts to increase revenue or do you find it turns people off?
If you would add them, would you wait to hit a certain level of traffic before adding them?
If you see this, I’d value your thoughts. Thanks!
Thanks for your helping me to get on my feet. I hope that you and yours are doing very well.
Great article. I have one question: When you find a product to build the site around, is it a general product, or a very specific brand of the product? Like do I build a site around reviews of hammers, or reviews of one specific hammer? Thanks for the help.
You could go either way, but I think what Mike is recommending here is for your first site, to make it just about one specific hammer.
Thank you for the clarification.
So, I’m a hustler based on Indonesia, South East Asia, and I’ve been wandering if this article, or even any article in your website are relevant here in my region. Please help me, I really like your content but I doubt it’s applicable here. Sorry for bad English.
Quick question about the “interesting content”.
Do have a recommended schedule/timeline for how often a person should be adding new content?
I know most bloggers recommend adding content daily/weekly (minimum) in order to drive followers to their sites.
I just want to say think you for this opportunity.
Thank you Michael, I really appreciate your honest and straightforward article. It really simplified things for me and I may just give this a try now. I’ve wanted to try this for years but didn’t know how to start or where to begin. Many thanks!
Great post! Just confused, how do you make profits on your affiliate website? Do you put a link to buy right on your page or how does that work to link your website to buying from the company?
Yes, you’d use a special tracking link provided by either the company or a 3rd party affiliate network to link to the retailer’s site.
Interesting but I’m a complete newbie,I don’t quite understand the whole stuff is there any way you can make it more easier to me because it’s so complex
seeing it for the first time, and having no pre knowledge of it it’s a bit difficult getting it.
How do you access google trend if you are not a google admin?
I don’t have a blog, YouTube channel, or any other type of website presence with which to market my link. How do I go about driving traffic to my site?