Google and You

How Important is Google?

If you’re going to build a Website to make money online, you’re going to need traffic.  If you want to get free traffic, you’re going to need help from the search engines.  The largest search engine, in terms of number of daily searches, is Google.  Therefore, it stands to reason that you should at least give some thought on a regular basis to Google and how your relationship with that particular search engine is going to affect you and your Website.

google seoObviously, having your site rank highly in Google’s search results for keywords that are important to your business can be helpful.  If you’re interested in that, you’ll be able to find thousands of articles on this site and elsewhere that cover that topic.  Optimizing your site for Google rankings is a lot of work, especially if you take backlinking into consideration, which involves finding ways to get other sites to link to yours.  Google tends to regard backlinks as a “vote” for a site, and the more backlinks you have, the more importance the search engine will assign to your site, at least in theory.  That last part is a big problem.

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Really Cheap Information Products – Don’t Fall for This New Trick

Watch Out for Really Cheap Information Products

Over the years, I’ve purchased a lot of information products.  These might include ebooks, training courses, video courses or even software.  We’re talking about tools and information to help me improve my online business, or perhaps show me a new way to make money online.  As someone who reviews such products on a regular basis, I see sales pages for such products all the time and I receive offers via email on a daily basis.

really cheap information productsIn general, I try to evaluate whether a particular product is worth the money they’re asking for it.  If Product X sells for $27 or $47 or $97, I try to decide whether it’s worth that, in terms of the information provided or in terms of its earnings potential.  After a while, you can sort of gauge whether or not a particular product is offering sufficient value to justify the price, and often the value exceeds the price.   Recently, however, marketers have changed their strategies by introducing really cheap information products at really low price points, often in the $4-$7 range.  That’s a sneaky trick.

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Product Reviews – Sometimes, Honesty Isn’t Good Enough

Product Reviews – Is Honesty Good Enough?

This is my second blog post about product reviews in the past two weeks and it’s part helpful information and part rant.  I’ve written before about how creating a blog that features product reviews as a prominent part of your content can be a great way to draw visitors to your site as well as a great way to make money online.  You write about products that people are interested in buying, you review them honestly, and your visitors can decide if they want to buy them or not.

product reviews - trust is imporantIt’s possible to make money from reviews of products that you like as well as products that you think are terrible.  If you like it and think it will benefit your visitors, then by all means, provide a link that will make it easy for them to buy it.  If you don’t like it, and let’s be honest – not all products are great, then you can provide your visitors with a link to an alternative product that will help them.  You can say something like “I don’t think this product is all that helpful, but if you’re interested in a similar product, you might want to try this one.”  This system works great most of the time, but sometimes, even honesty can get you in hot water.

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Product Reviews – Honesty is the Best Policy

Why Write Product Reviews?

If you’re looking for a good entry point into making money online, one great way to do it is to write product reviews.  Consumers love product reviews; they like to read about a product before they buy.  If you shop at Amazon regularly, you probably check out the reviews before you buy.  Sites such as Yelp or Trip Advisor get a ton of traffic because people are interested in seeing what other people have to say about something they’re thinking about buying.

product reviewsProduct reviews offer a terrific way to make money in just about any niche.   You can write product reviews about just about anything, pointing out the pros and cons of any product.   If you like the product, you can recommend that the visitor buy it.  You can also, for their convenience, provide an affiliate link that will take them to some merchant who will sell it to them, and you’ll get a commission out of that.   What if you don’t like it?  Then you should explain why you don’t like it and then offer them an alternative that you like better, along with a link to buy that product instead.

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Bonus Products – Where Something is Usually Nothing

Don’t Let Bonus Products Distract You

If you do anything at all in the world of affiliate marketing, you’re going to encounter bonus products from time to time.  These are additional products that are offered with the purchase of a software or information product, and are generally offered either by the creator of the product or by affiliates who are promoting them.  They are seen as adding value to the product as a whole, and are generally regarded as something that a seller “must” do when offering a product for sale.

bonusBonus products can be a distraction, however, and as a buyer, you definitely want to pay attention to what the bonus products are and whether or not they can help make your purchase worthwhile.  More often than not, they’re simply a distraction, and as a marketing tool, bonus products are an effective distraction that often covers up deficiencies within the product itself.  In this post, I’ll go over the concept of bonus products and show you a few examples of what I’ve heard called “bonus bloat” in action.

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Keeping Focus When You Work Online From Home

Keeping Focus is Important

keeping focusI’ve written extensively about working from home, and for a good reason – I’ve been doing it for a dozen years now and I think it’s a great way to have a career.  You are your own boss, and you get to decide what you’re going to do, how you’re going to do it, and when you’re going to do the work.  These are all good things for independent-minded people, but the transition can be hard for those accustomed to regular scheduling, as keeping focus can be difficult for those who are new to the “do it yourself” thing.

When you work a regular job, you ordinarily won’t have a problem keeping focus, as you have other people, such as your supervisor, pretty much insisting upon it.  If you manage to stay on task and get the work done, you’ll stay employed.  If you don’t do your job or become easily distracted, you’ll quickly find yourself out of work and you’ll soon see someone else doing your job instead of you.  So how can you manage to make money online while keeping focus?  I’ll offer a few tips.

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Stock Photos and Where to Get Them

 Why You Need Stock Photos

There are a number of things you need to consider when creating a blog, and one of those is the blog’s visual look.  You can have the most important things to say, but people get bored with a page that has nothing but text on it.  For that reason, you want to spice up your pages a bit with some graphics or some photos.  Unless you take the pictures or design the graphics yourself, you’re going to have to acquire some stock photos somewhere, and that can get expensive.

stock photos technologyHow expensive?  That depends.  You can spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars for a single photo, depending on the source.  Obviously, that can add up quickly and spending $1000 per blog post for photos is something that’s well outside the budget of even the most well-heeled bloggers.  What you don’t want to do is what a lot of people do as a shortcut – simply do a search of Google Images, find something you like, and copy it and post it into your Web page.  That “free” photo could cost you a fortune.  How so?  Images are copyrighted, and in many cases, the people who own those stock photos will sue.

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Free Blogs – Should You Use Them?

Free Blogs Have Good and Bad Points

There are always expenses to be paid if you’re going to work in affiliate marketing.  If you’re going to make money online, you’re going to have to spend some money to get there.  There’s no way around that, but there’s nothing wrong with looking for ways to save money if you can.  One of the ongoing, nagging expenses of working in Internet marketing is having to buy domain names and pay for Web hosting.  Free blogs could solve that problem, as you wouldn’t have to buy a domain name and you wouldn’t have to pay for hosting.

free blogsOf course, there are some drawbacks to using free blogs, and those drawbacks may or may not be important to you.  Some people feel that they should start with free blogs and then, when they start to earn some money, they can move to paid hosting and their own domain names.  There are pros and cons to using free blogs, and in this post I’ll talk about the advantages of using free blogs and some good reasons why you may wish to avoid them.

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Information Overload? You’re Not Alone

Dealing With Information Overload

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When you first get started in trying to make money online, it can be very easy to get overwhelmed with information overload.  There’s a lot to learn in Internet marketing, and there’s also a lot of conflicting information.  The area of Internet marketing is also sufficiently broad that there’s no set way of doing things.  Plus, if you join a couple of marketing forums in order to learn about marketing in general, you’re going to find a lot of disagreement about just about any topic.  It can be pretty frustrating, and not just for newbies.  It can be tough for experienced marketers, too.

information overloadWhen you’re first starting out, you’ll have to learn the basics about how affiliate marketing works.  What’s an affiliate link?  Whats an advertiser?  What’s a publisher?  Then you’ll have to learn about marketing niches. Then you’ll have to learn about how to monetize your site.  Do you run ads?  Post text links?  Do you collect email addresses to build a mailing list?  If so, how do you do that?  And how do you build a Website, anyway?  What is WordPress?  The questions and answers can be overwhelming, and that’s where information overload sets in.

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Affiliate Marketing Help – Go Where the Help Can Be Found

Finding Affiliate Marketing Help

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A lot of people seem to think that affiliate marketing is easy, or at least an easier way to make money online than other things you might do.  I don’t know that it’s really easy at all, but it is fairly straightforward.  All you need to do to make money is find people who have a problem, find a solution for it, and find a mechanism that presents the solution to the people with the problem.  For most Internet marketers, that means building a Website, putting content on that site that offers the solution to a problem, and making sure that people who are looking for that solution can find you so that you can make money from them.

confusedWhile affiliate marketing is straightforward in the abstract, it can be rather difficult to pull of in reality.  Building a Website requires skills.  Designing one takes skills.  Maintaining a Website takes skills.  Then you need to create some content, and do it over and over.  You need to find something to sell and find a way to sell it on your Website.  Finally, after all of that, you need to figure out a way to make the public aware that your site exists so that they can find it.  Needless to say, a lot of people are stymied by all of this and are looking for affiliate marketing help.  The problem is that many of these people are looking for answers in the wrong places.

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