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I can't get rich online and neither can you. Topics include why you won't get rich with your blog, ideas you wish you had thought of, and other Internet phenomena.

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You want to get rich with your blog? Maybe you think Adsense will let you retire? Sorry, it's not going to happen.

Archive: Affiliate Marketing

What Freelancer.com is likely to do with the Warrior Forum…

If you haven’t heard the news yet, Freelancer.com recently paid $3.2 million AUD (that’s roughly $3 million … and a steal of a deal considering that my estimations are that he shouldn’t be making less than $1 million a year right now, and Allen way under-utilizes the forum) to acquire the Warrior Forum from long time owner Allen Says.  You can read the official post from Allen here.

There’s been a ton of speculation about what Freelancer might do with the Warrior Forum, but a lot of the speculation seems to be downright silly or stupid from a business standpoint, such as just redirecting traffic to Freelancer and so forth (no one in their right mind would do that to such a big and popular forum already making good money).

So I put together a list of what I would do if I were Freelancer, and what I really think they’re going to try to do in two different phases.  Time will tell if I’m right, but I bet I am.  :)

What Freelancer.com will do to the Warrior Forum — Phase 1

We already know that they lowered the initial WSO (Warrior Special Offer) pricing — the main marketplace at the Warrior Forum — from $40 to $20 to list your special offers for sale in their market (still costing $20 to “bump” it up again after a few days usually when it drops below page 3 in their forum marketplace), and we also know that they changed the War Room (a special sub-forum section where people share tips and give freebies) pricing from $20 one time to $20 / year.

However, in phase 1 I think their next step would be to introduce their own WSO network option where instead of users tracking their affiliate sales on the WSO forum through other WSO networks like JV Zoo and Warrior+ (or larger non WSO networks like Clickbank, Paydotcom, etc.) where most of those networks collect a fee per sale, they’ll have an option where you can use an option straight through the Warrior Forum itself.

Why does this make sense?

Simple, because it will mean more money in their pockets, and they can stand out by having more control over reviews, ratings, refunds, etc. than the other networks, which would give a major incentive to new users to use them.

Can they eliminate the competitors like JV Zoo, Warrior+, etc.?

Not initially — it’d be dumb of them to try to force WSO listings to go through them vs. just offering a big incentive to do so.  They could piss off a large part of the community really quickly and risk the other networks trying to team up to drive the traffic outside of the forums altogether (something the other networks would be unlikely to do on a mass scale, but certainly could on a smaller scale with a handful of the vendors there).

So offering them as an alternative seems less intrusive and slowly builds their network.  This will appease a lot of the members and prevent any major lash back, but that’s where phase 2 comes into play…

Phase 2 — The Takeover of the WSO Marketplace

Phase 1 will start right off the bat with some changes happening within the first few weeks, while the other parts might take a couple / few months to start up.  After they start, phase 2 will happen anywhere from 6 months to one year later.

During phase 2 of this, Freelancer will already have their own competing marketplace in the WSO forum marketplace with a healthy portion of the WSO listings using them.  Those listings will have extra benefits of easier ratings, more trustworthy reviews, more seamless integrations, etc..

And this is where the phase 2 plan really starts…

At that point in time, it’d be dumb of them to allow JV Zoo, Warrior+, and the others to really partake in their playground.  It’d come off as less of a disruption if they kicked them out now vs. at the start, but they’ll have to go about it in the right way.

The best way to go about that would be to try to justify it for the better of the community, such as by saying that because of the reviews being abused by non-buyers or by the vendors themselves, they’re going to require that listings go through their own network so all of this can be verified for a better user experience (or something to that nature).

This will effectively be shutting down the other networks and giving nearly 100% control to their in-house network, which could mean massive profits for them.

But what will happen to JV Zoo, Warrior+, etc.???

For a short time, JV Zoo and Warrior+, who rely on the forum (despite what they may or may not admit) for their business, will try to act like that’s not a big deal and will act like they won’t need the forum, and they’ll do okay for awhile as they’ll have their band of loyal vendors that stick to them for awhile, but their lifeline will have been cut and without massive changes, they’ll likely die a slow and painful death.

The other networks that don’t rely on the forum will continue to obviously be just fine, though, and may even have a slight increase in activity during this time if everyone plays their cards right.

Could I be wrong???

Sure, I could be wrong (although I don’t think so), and there are a few possible moves that could change the above potential events slightly…  For instance, Freelancer.com could make a lowball offer to buy one of the other forum networks.

I think it’d be kind of dumb of them to do that unless it’s a dirt cheap price (which the owners will be likely to turn down and will try to fight it out), but they’d have the benefit of starting with a base of users.  However, unless it’s a dirt cheap price, they could easily get there themselves with controlling the entire forum to start with and being able to really push people into their new network if they create one (which almost certainly I believe they will).

Is it wrong of Freelancer to do this?

In short, no!  If you drop $3.2 million, you have a right to try to get your investment back.

Why do I think they’ll do this?

Simple — because I would do the exact thing above if it were me.  :)

Agree or disagree?  Let me know below!

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Best Free Keyword Generation Tool (and a Market Samurai Review)

Wow, now that’s one long ass title, but quite fitting nonetheless.  I always see people talking about what the best keyword tool is, and you’ll always get the typical responses:  the sheep who just spout out what they already heard elsewhere without using anything themselves; the affiliates of one product vs. another product trying to either make a quick buck or justify their promos for the tool; and the drowned out voices of those who are giving an honest opinion.

Since Keyword Elite and Micro Niche Finder turned down my offer of saying their tools are the best keyword tools in exchange for a measly $2,000,000, I’m going to take the route of giving you my honest opinion.  :)

Now, having said that, I already see some people assuming that I’m against Keyword Elite 2 and Micro Niche Finder — that’s completely not the case.  Both are pretty cool tools, but I’m going to focus on the free keyword tools for now as many draw from the same sources …. it’s just in how they display the results and what features they have that make all the difference.

So now, back to my honest review.

There are two main free keyword generation tools out there:

1.  Market Samurai

and

2.  Google’s Keyword Generator

Having said that, Market Samurai essentially pulls its results from Google’s keyword generator anyway, and Google won’t try to sell you other stuff.

Google’s keyword tool is pretty nifty, and if you enter in a few relevant keywords, especially more long tail keywords, you can get some very relevant results that will show you how many searches they get a month, how competitive it is to advertise there, etc..

I love this tool and use it all the time, especially because it’s web-based and very easy to access.

The only major downside to it is that they don’t really allow you to sort the results easily.  It’s still easy to see mostly what keywords are good and what ones are bad, but it’d be nice to offer more filtering features.

That’s where Market Samurai comes into play.  The interface I don’t like nearly as much as Google’s own keyword tool, but they do a nice job of allowing you to sort through the results, rank the results by order of traffic or competition level, etc..

Since the keyword tool on Market Samurai is free anyway, I say use it if you’re going through HUGE keyword lists.  They have some nifty filtering features that make it worthwhile.

However, since it’s desktop based, if you’re looking for a quick search and aren’t wanting to sift through hundreds of results, Google’s own keyword tool is just fine and easier.

Now, having said that, here’s my personal tip for finding awesome keywords:  focus on keywords that get AT LEAST 1,000 searches per month and have at least a little Adwords competition (meaning that at least someone finds value in that keyword).  Then see if domain names that are .com, .net, or .org are available with the keyword phrase in them (like [keyword phrase].com).  If they are available, grab one (ideally .com, then .net, and then .org in order of preference).

Then make the keyword phrase your page title (what appears at the very top of the browser on any webpage), and you should have a decent chance of getting ranked well doing just that.  Your chances will go up even more if most of the search results in Google don’t have the keyword phrase in their page title — to find out, do a search with the phrase in quotes on Google and check out how many sites have the keyword phrase within the page title (the blue link).  If not many do, you have an awesome keyword to go after.

Comments / opinions — please leave them below.  :)

My next two reviews will deal with traffic and leads, and both of those will have some awesome tips to get rich online … or at least make a little extra dough….

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You Know What’s Awesome? Abandoned Landing Pages

About three and a half months ago, I had this really nice landing page made for me and used it in a PPC campaign.  I ran that one for about a month, and then turned everything off and pretty much forgot about it.

Fast-forward to last week: I received a commission from that offer.  Turns out that my little abandoned LP was receiving a trickle of organic traffic.  Boy, am I glad I added Google analytics to that page.  I checked the page’s statistics to see what keywords were bringing the most people, did a little SEO with that data, and waited.

Two days later, my page was (and still is) ranking #1 on Yahoo for its primary keyword.  That’s with 0 backlinks too (page titles can make a world of difference).  That site proceeded to make me over $200 over the next few days, and I’ve decided to try and capitalize on it a bit more with some additional link building (directory subs, etc).

What can you learn from this?  Always put Google analytics code on your sites, even if you’re only going to use them for paid traffic.  I never expected to start ranking in that particular niche (it’s incredibly competitive), but now I’m holding the #1 spot for some pretty decent keywords.

Organic traffic is free traffic, and free money is always nice.

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Incoming Change of Tone

Back when I created this site, it was true: I couldn’t get rich.  That continued for months and months and months, so I kept updating with that theme.

Well, times change.  I’ve finally figured out enough to actually make money online, and my ROI has been quite good.  I’ve been making some nice $$$ on Facebook over the past couple weeks, and while I’m not ‘rich’, I am finally making decent money.  Some of my longtime readers might remember that I once set a goal to reach $50 per day in profit.  Well, I’ve met that goal and have blown past it too.

That leaves me wondering what I’m going to do with this blog.  I’ve got a lot of readers, so I don’t want to just get rid of it.  Maybe I should just post ambiguous earnings screenshots?

Singlesnet affiliate earnings

I dunno.  Maybe I should just change the tone of the blog from ‘I can’t get rich’ to ‘you can’t get rich’.  We’ll see.

I guess I should say this though:  Don’t expect me to become a fountain of good advice.  I screwed up for about seven months straight before finding something that worked, so I really don’t feel qualified to tell people how to do things.  All I can say is just keep trying stuff until something sticks.

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Doing a Little Offline Advertising

I’m going to be putting up 20-30 of these around campus today, so expect a picture-heavy post in the near future.  These flyers will serve two purposes:

  1. Get the word out about my new, Purdue-themed free blog hosting service.  You may be wondering why I created a free blog hosting service.  Well, each blog will have access to 15 or so themes (so far), and each one of those themes has a few Adsense blocks on it.  Adsense blocks with my publisher ID.  There are 36,000 students on this campus, and if even 0.5% of them sign up, I’ll have a lot of free content being created.  See where I’m going with this?
  2. Encourage people to sign up for that Vista Print business card offer, which incidentally pays me $12 per lead.

I’ll be placing them primarily in the Engineering and Management buildings.  If that works out, I’ll place some in other areas around campus as well.  We’ll see how this works out.

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