So What Is The Best Way To Make Some Money?

 

marketplace

This question is one that I am asked by many people, probably thousands over the years, it just gets asked over & over again-the answer is kind of obvious, but a lot of people don’t like to accept it, they like to carry on thinking there are secret methods, clever tactics, powerful software and genius marketing angles which the successful people all know and keep to themselves.

And to an extent there is some truth in this, we all know that having something desirable, valuable for sale is essential, and that you must then present this item, or service to the right audience, in the right way in order to gain sales. Simple right? Once you have this all in-place you merely rinse & repeat.

Sure, but the devil is definitely in the details. People I have worked with and helped in the past all knew this basic principle. You know it, it is just obvious! But, sourcing the products, preparing them for sale and then being able to advertise to the right customers is damned hard. Otherwise everyone would be successful, we would all be retired and simply counting our money!

Fact number 1:

Work is involved – it takes work, effort, time and energy to begin, set up and maintain a sales system.

Fact number 2:

It requires knowledge and learning to understand what people are looking for, discovering what people want and then offering this to them-so many people come at this from the wrong angle and try to convince people to accept something they build, or make without first researching if anyone wants it!

Fact number 3:

Resources & money are needed to set things up – you absolutely need certain items and conditions, systems to be set up and available. You need to obtain either inventory, or human resources, or the means to deliver your service/s or products. Even if you are ‘Drop Shipping’ you still need to present your items; and you need to find good sources of wholesale products! 

So, for the vast numbers of people who don’t have the necessary skills to build their own sales system, a website, an online means to present their goods or services and then promote them to the right audience/s-the only solution is to purchase the skills of others. This is fraught with risk, because you don’t necessarily know the true capability of services. But this is definitely how a lot of entrepreneurs operate. You do not need to possess lots of technical skills, you just need the seed capital to get stuff built!

Services like Plato webdesign for instance provide a full service for smart, switched on business builders who simply may not be aware of the online side of things! This company is remarkable, one that I have used myself on occasion when I have been busy. My own web building company also provides a ‘done for you’ option – Web Star Services we have helped plenty of business builders get their eCommerce or membership sites up and running. These are High End services, not your average suburban hack shop!

If you have money but no skills you still need to know what you are doing, but at least you can get things done – this is how a lot of my associates began. By investing in existing infrastructure you can build empires.

It can be surprising how little you need to to get started. A ‘done for you’ website can be built, managed, promoted and content created for around $20,000 – OR you can purchase an existing site. By buying into a working online business you escape all of the problems – but discernment is needed for choosing the right site!

There are no overnight successes, but there are quick results if you know what you are doing, choosing to have a build done for you by people who are skilled, this is the best approach if you can’t build yourself! SEO, Advertising & content Marketing are the avenues to online success, there are many channels available each one represents a different marketing opportunity-you need to rise above the obvious dimensions of these platforms and regard them as your tools for selling whatever it is you want to sell.

 

Affiliate Marketing What Is The Real Story?

Affiliate marketing combined with niche marketing is a dynamite way to commence your online business career. Why not learn 100% free from a legitimate organization that offers you also free website resources-it helped me a lot when I first began.

wish
Affiliate Marketing Training 100% FREE

The Real Facts About Affiliate Marketing

If there is one particular area of digital marketing which attracts the most attention, and also where many new players get their start, it has to be Affiliate Marketing.

There are literally thousands of eBooks, membership sites, training packages and products all aimed at educating people to ‘make money online’ via being an affiliate.

What exactly is it? It is as old as the hills, ‘middle man marketing’ is another term for it – at its most basic level being an affiliate simply means you are encouraging people to purchase products or services that you do not own, but you have a special relationship with the product manufacturer/creator, or service provider to receive a percentage of the sale value; a commission

When applied to the internet, this can be a very easy way to earn money. Well this is the theory anyway. Because you do not have to be a product creator, or supplier of services many new players in the ‘internet marketing’ game can participate fairly quickly.

Some reckon you do not need to build a website, or possess technical skills to succeed; however you greatly increase your potential for success if you do have a few resources to use.Plus if you really want to make some serious money, building your own affiliate empire is the way to go!

The main requirement for any kind of affiliate marketing is being able to present the product, or service to the most relevant audiences.

This is where an awful lot of people go wrong, this is where most of the ‘spam’ originates. Spam messages are the natural result of inexperienced people attempting to get people to buy something – but they do not know what they are doing, and they just throw ‘mud against the wall’ and hope some of it sticks(!)

 

 

The main difference between failed affiliate marketers, and those who make lots of money, is all in how they go about ‘targeting‘ their audience. This is the entire difference- if you can present the right product/service to the right people you will have a much better chance of making sales.

It makes sense doesn’t it? What is the difference between all of the messages in your ‘Junk’ folder, and those messages you actually click on to read?

Chances are those messages you choose to actually read are from people you either know, or you are aware of through some other process. Even if the message is asking you to consider buying something, you do not mind because you have established some kind of link or relationship with the sender. This basic difference is highly significant.

Those people who take the time and effort to think through how they will present their affiliate materials tend to do better. This is common sense, but it is astounding how quickly common sense is abandoned when it comes to online marketing!

Among the first successes I experienced in affiliate sales gave me a taste of just how powerful this can be. I happened to come across a site called ‘Affilorama‘ – this is put together by a chap from New Zealand named Mark Ling.

Mark is a genuine bloke, he is one of the better online ‘guru’ types out there. Mark’s approach is so honest and effective that his own father was able to retire early and enjoy a lifestyle without worry! This is true, you can read about it for yourself-(Google Mark Ling)

This is a legitimate product, it teaches you how to build simple product websites, use Google to build organic traffic and then semi-passively get commissions. I was impressed with the product and I had some success by following what it taught me. Plus Affilorama provide their own WordPress theme which you can use to compile niche sites. Free. That’s right this course and all the resources are 100% free and legitimate. What’s the catch? Well they offer you a ‘done-for-you’ version where Affilorama build out your affiliate sites and give you an almost guaranteed online income-this you pay for! 

I understand that this is still available, and it has been updated to suit today’s online conditions. I had no problem recommending Affilorama because these guys offer you the real deal, not hype or bullcrap. 

Prior to this first experience with internet-based affiliate malarky I was much like everyone else – I was deeply skeptical. It is entirely natural to resist hype, and to consider all of the banners and flashing text as being rubbish, of course! And much of it is to be avoided, but there is a genuine and much deeper level to all of this. I resolved to only speak the truth based on my own research and results. It is the only way to fly.

Oscar The Flying Dog Agrees With Me!

 

 

It was supremely satisfying seeing actual money come in from affiliate niche sites I built using Affilorama free WordPress tools, and following their instructions on their website. Hey if you put the work in and learn from the free course, you can make money. Simple as that.

So what is the ‘right way’? Like a lot of things in life if you approach it with good intentions and with the aim to help people it usually means you benefit-does that sound too ‘Kumbya’?, Well all it means is you put some effort into what you do.

It takes a bit of time to set things up, write some decent articles, build reasonable quality websites (WordPress), you can even use the free blog platforms like ‘Blogger’ & ‘Blogspot’.

If it takes a few months to do this, well that time is going to pass anyway, so you may as well fill it with doing profitable things, and put a little effort into learning new skills

If you inform people about information that is not widely known, and they also benefit from it, at some point you are going to generate good will, you will earn the trust of people. If you set about trying to impress or trick people, make false claims you will not succeed and you will also ruin your reputation. It simply isn’t worth it.

Always consider the ‘long game’, the internet is not going anywhere, there are plenty of opportunities for all-there is no panic! So approach affiliate marketing from the desire to help someone discover a good quality experience, none of us are ‘saints’ – in fact most of us aren’t!

Digital marketing can be a grubby, dog-eat-dog industry, but you do not have to play it like that. Those that succeed the most and for the longest are all good people who go out of their way to help. It’s true-the scam artists may have a few wins and succeed for a while, but eventually it bottoms out, I’ve seen this time and again. Resolve to be one of the good guys, and you will succeed in time!

If you have any specific questions, go ahead and drop me a line, I am happy to assist and shed light on anything you might be unsure of, remember niche marketing is just about putting some research into what you might already be familiar with, and like to do already. Find a niche you like and build a website, produce some good quality content.

Look, find out for yourself if you like – Affilorama offer a 100% free training program and you can get all the tools for free, even the hosting!

You don’t come across much that is free AND of high quality these days, and I can recommend Affilorama, they are a good bunch of people-if you want to take it further you can and pay for their ‘done for you’ options, but this is entirely up to you. I have done my duty and given you a 100% FREE resource that can change your life, the rest is up to you.


 

 

 

Why Use WordPress And What Else Can You Do With It?

learn wordpress

Why WordPress Is King 

If you have been online, and looked at website builders for any length of time, you could not fail to have seen that WordPress is very popular. Commencing in 2003 the version of WordPress which has evolved into a ‘content management system’ is driven by an SQL data base, an administration back-end that enables you to build a very broad range of website types.

New players often get confused about WordPress, and this is perfectly understandable because of the dot com platform which is also pretty good as a public blog creating platform. But for serious contenders, people wishing to own their own sites and develop a unique digital presence, the software version of WordPress, headquartered @ WordPress.org, offers a powerful, professional site building system which is remarkable in its versatility.

Alternative CMS’s

There are contenders in this very active field of website building platforms, and there are always options and alternatives that have their loyal followers; indeed it is sometimes practical to use different platforms for particular objectives. Joomla is one of such contenders, and Joomla has some significant features which make it very attractive.

I have used Joomla in the past and I have to say I am impressed. Also a content management system, and also having a large range of options Joomla is rock solid and highly scalable – it powers some big businesses out there. However, the technical demands for using Joomla are considerable, for non-technical people it is way out of reach. You do not need to be a coder, but the level of detail involved with producing websites is often time consuming, the learning curve is too steep, because of my IT training and experience I was able to achieve what I intended, but it took way longer than I would have liked.

Drupal is yet another offering, and once again this is a content management system, I also investigated this to build a site. Drupal has lots of themes and templates, it is powerful, secure, versatile but the technical skill level to build and maintain even a simple website is even more rigorous than Joomla. For people who are not particularly skilled with digital media the time factor is daunting to scale the learning curve!

All three content management systems, Joomla, Drupal and WordPress are ‘open-source’, meaning that the code making them up is completely open to everyone to use, edit, modify and even sell. All three systems are distinct communities, made up of people all around the globe:moms, dads, engineers, scientists, grocers, students, ordinary people 🙂 There are some others also available, and they also have their communities.

The Big Advantages Of WordPress

What makes WordPress more appealing than these other equally excellent open source web builders? Really it is the balance of:

  • The level of difficulty in learning how to use it, combined with the
  • Results you can attain, together with the
  • Time needed to achieve the final result

On balance WordPress outstrips the alternatives because you can build great websites much more quickly. This basic fact is the major reason. This is certainly why I normally choose WordPress for my projects, along with some other factors.

So what can you build with WordPress, just how versatile is it really?

If you take a quick look on the wordpress.org site you can see a list of well known companies who use WordPress to power their websites – from Disney to Adobe so you can see that serious business uses WordPress; these businesses could easily hire a professional website developer to build whatever kind of site they wanted, but they chose WordPress. There are other reasons, beyond efficiency of build time at play here. The big advantage in using WordPress is the fact it is fantastic out of the box with being optimized for the search engines, the site structure you can attain quickly with ‘permalinks’, the clean coding. WordPress is truly a ‘Sweet Machine’.

From simple one page sites, to huge corporate publications, to membership sites, eCommerce shops, personal blogs, all kinds of ‘niche’ based sites such as this very site, directories, city portals. Along with this core versatility there are thousands of php applications, called ‘Plugins’ that can be applied in combination to achieve different functionality. These additional functions can range from additional fonts, to complex directory systems, mapping, eCommerce shopping carts… The list is simply mind blowing, and many excellent ones are free – there is also a huge market for premium plugins that are sold along with frameworks and themes.

Huge WordPress Industry

There is a large industry around WordPress, and the ever growing community of users to provide innovative extensions and features. One of the biggest aspects of this industry are site builders. 

The core functions of WordPress allow for all kinds of building, the native ‘wysiwyg’ editor can be enhanced to provide a word processor style tool bar, this is fine for general site building. However, the demands for modern web pages have evolved, time is always a massive factor for project deadlines and commercial pressures – these site building tools allow us to generate attractive and functional pages even more quickly, they have a modular architecture, which means you can place entire divisions and blocks of content containers directly into the page.

Entire site systems have been developed, Optimizepress is a hugely popular platform which took the core open source platform of WordPress and shaped it into a massively useful tool for commercial use. I used the first version of Optimizepress (the clue is in the title) this was back in 2011 – the results it produces looks a little ‘dated’ now but can still be used. Optimizepress 2.0 was released in 2013 to much fanfare and acclaim. It seems many players use this for everything-you can build landing pages and fully featured ‘funnels’ and membership sites. But it is not cheap, and it is also pretty techy. I do not use this version, I looked around for other options and found a really great tool.

Thrive Themes are producers of WordPress based extensions, themes, site builders and content tools. I have used their content builder, not on this site because I am aiming for a publication not commercial pages; but certainly on a number of other projects. The big advantage with Thrive Content Builder is speed and the quality of results.

Learning how to use WordPress is one of the best things you can do for yourself, it allows you to develop all kinds of related skills, using hosting accounts, building pages, writing articles, networking with other online people, web development skills you can re-purpose through offering your services to business and people wishing to build an online presence, SEO skills… you could say that learning WordPress is a ‘gateway drug’ to the digital economy. The internet is crammed full of WordPress tutorials, the skill level is within most people’s reach. This is the big advantage of WordPress, it allows non-technical people to easily participate in the digital revolution, Liberty, Equality and Fraternity! Do yourself a big favor and get stuck into discovering WordPress, it will pay off in ways you probably can’t even imagine at this point.

Security Considerations

One of the big questions about using WordPress CMS is that of security. Being so popular, and because many inexperienced people tend to use it a lot of WordPress sites are ‘wide open’ to even newbie hackers, the big trick that is most often employed by these irritating and negative oinks is ‘brute force’ attacks. Bots are available to download which challenge the passwords on a WordPress site, automatically, and many people use ‘Admin’ for their main account – it is a simple matter of running one of these bots and within an hour the site can be breached, defaced or even deleted and all your hard work is Kaput. NEVER use ‘Admin’ as your main account name, and defending your site is a simple matter of implementing a free security plugin.

Let me put it this way, I have used WordPress actively since 2010, built dozens of different websites and I normally have at least 7 sites running at any given time, I have been ‘hacked’ once, and once only; this was before I was fully aware of what security options were available. What security plugin do I suggest? Wordfence, this is the only plugin you need, it is reliable, almost bullet proof and…Free, but you do need to set it up properly, and activate the firewall rules.

 

The Value Of Expired Domains

Gaining SEO Benefits From The Beginning

expired domains

Building a brand new website with a domain you dream up is a long, hard road. Of course it is great to have a fresh project and a totally unique brand name. The current state of play online is extremely competitive, there are business entities with enormous resources to throw at their online efforts – if you are a solo-preneur striving to build your empire it is a struggle.

One way of gaining a lot of SEO power easily is to search out expired domains. There is nothing new about this, but the methods now available can make a big difference, the really valuable domains are always snapped up pretty quick; but if you are diligent and apply some of these ‘free’ methods you might just grab yourself something that could change your life. If you can find domains with good all round metrics – NOT just ‘Trust Flow’ – it can mean your project gains favorable ranking, good news!

Dom Cop  is my favorite source of expired domains, also this is used by a lot of SEO people so you need to be on-the-ball. This recent video from Josh MacDonald goes through how to snap up good domains, process and eliminate the spammy crap and quickly spot the high-value ones. All using free tools, it takes a bit of work and attention but hey, the results can be literally life-changing. Check it out.

Building A Professional Website With Free Software

The secret weapon of many successful online entrepreneurs is ‘WordPress’ – the software content management system which enables non-coders to seriously disrupt the web development space, it is no longer the sole province of tech experts. The sheer versatility of WordPress is a game changer.

learn wordpress

A Fully Functioning Professional Business Website

Long gone are the days when having your business website coded by a designer/developer was the only option.

I am not talking about clunky free software that results in something that looks like it is from 1998, these days WordPress is a slick professional platform that can produce a very wide range of websites-very good websites indeed.

People always get confused about WordPress because of the dot com version that is widely known as a blogging platform. The WordPress I am talking about is the software version from wordpress.org – this has an SQL data base driving it and is hosted on private hosting accounts – this means your own rented piece of cyber real estate which nobody else can interfere with – it is the only way to operate in today’s digital business world.

Anyway, 25% of all websites on the internet today are based on the software version of WordPress, it is a content management system-which simply means it has an administration back end with which you manage your pages & articles, your content and styling is produced using a word processor style ‘wysiwyg’ editor, themes (a bit like templates) you can also apply CSS if you want to get adventurous (it is not hard) and a whole raft of software plugins which enable you to add all kinds of additional functionality. It is a sweet machine!

And no, you do not need to know coding to produce excellent quality sites, although if you do pick up a little CSS & know some basic HTML tagging it will help you, but absolutely not required. The page builders now available have made it even easier – but you still need to have some idea of what you are doing, where to position sections, and how to produce different results. ‘Divi’ type page builders are now everywhere. Beaver, Thrive, Pootlepress, SiteOrigin – you need to choose one you resonate with.

 

Here is a great tutorial which takes you through building a superb, very high quality website you can use for your own purposes, or build for a local business. The step-by-step approach is easy to follow and everything is covered, very thorough. You will have the confidence and skills to make your own beautiful WordPress site, you can include a blog section also. The tutorial is from my associate Josh from wpsculptor.com – Josh is very thorough and provides step-by-step instructions a toddler can follow.

There are many WordPress tutorials available on YouTube, finding out how to use this software is not the hard part, the hard part is actually taking action and having the patience and resolution to apply what you learn!

And This Is To Build A Professional Site Using The ‘Divi’ Theme, A Modern Theme That has a page building tool- I recommend getting the  Bluehost  hosting as opposed to Hostgator, they are more reliable and it is a faster system – I used Hostgator myself for a few years but it changed and the level of support is not good.

If you want the very best WordPress hosting available WP Engine is the way to go, this is for the truly serious developer and site owner seeking the fastest site speeds – I include it because some people want the very best, and this is about the best available, Bluehost is good, but WPEngine is better.

You can get the fabulous Divi theme right here – Elegant Themes have many other themes which are great for different projects, all for the one low price – I can recommend them, they also provide a lot of good user support and a very active forum where people report the problems they encounter – it’s pretty good!

A lot of people go to the Themeforest site and pick up all kinds of specialized themes – these are expensive and in my experience more trouble than they are worth, they are too complex and the coding is not always clean. You can gain professional results with Elegant Themes, but it is all about having options this is what identifies the professional operator, access to options that suit specific circumstances, online is never “generic”. Other good WordPress themes which I have used are:

  • StudioPress – GENESIS Framework, This is an actual framework that is designed to boost your site with very powerful silo-type structuring and some of the cleanest coding in the business. Google loves Genesis sites! You will need to learn how to build with Genesis but it is not difficult, it is a development on the WordPress system, this is seriously good.
  • Woo Themes – The Woo company is based in Cape Town, South Africa and they are the people who produce the very famous “Woo Commerce” eCommerce system used by millions of web shop owners. As opposed to using something like Shopify, or Volusion where you are committed to being a customer of their platform, you can be independent with “Woo” and own your assets, it is a personal choice. Anyway, they also produce a lot of WordPress themes which are excellent, some free ones, top quality and superb coding!
  • OptimizePress – this is the Go-To theme for a lot of internet marketing type people. This is also a framework style development, you can produce a dazzling range of results, from simple sales pages to very large membership sites. Chances are the gurus you are signed up with and the last shiny object you purchased was from an OptimizePress site, expensive but excellent versatility and quality.
  • Thrive Themes – Another European company, these guys are good. Their page building technology has changed the game for many web development businesses, mine included! They offer themes and plugins to enable you to produce a spectacular result, if you have some money and you want top results, Thrive Themes are brilliant.

I have included this section as way to help those people who may not be familiar with WordPress, it is the result of my own experience and using the products, I have included links to the companies mentioned, some of them are affiliate – but most are just plain links. You may not be aware, but an affiliate link does not add any charge to you at all – I never provide links to anything I have not used myself and found to be genuinely helpful & of high quality, there’s no point otherwise!

If you discover that you need help, or advice or guidance by all means give me a shout, I have been known to help people – it is no shame to seek out assistance it is how we learn and grow. I have been working with WordPress for 7 years now, I think it is still the very best way to learn about internet business – sort of like the ‘gateway drug’ of internet marketing, basically you can build whatever you need with it.