I still remember it like it was yesterday – my first niche site and what I did wrong that now seems to stupid…
…but, the thing was, back then (more than a decade ago) I didn’t know any better.
Stupidly I thought that all you had to do was throw up a site about some subject, populate it with articles, and people would come.
And, hopefully, they’d buy on my recommendation.
Remember the movie ‘Field Of Dreams’? And the misquote “If you build it, they will come” (actually, the correct quote is “if you build it, he will come“)
That’s exactly what I thought at the time. In fact, I was so concerned about launching this site that I spent weeks agonising over its layout, header image and content before I pressed the Publish button.
I really thought that, as soon as I hit that Publish button, hordes of people would come and start reading my articles.
So, what really happened?
I published, then sat back, and waited.
Every few hours I’d refresh my traffic stats, expecting to see growing numbers of visitors.
Guess what really happened?
Apart from the inevitable ‘bots, not one person visited my first niche site. The only visitors were Google, Bing, Yahoo and so on (well, at least I was grateful the search engines were trawling my content).
That’s when I started to realise that the ‘build it and they will come‘ concept, where you throw up a niche blog and get indexed by Google and people magically find your articles, just doesn’t work. At least, in the short term.
There IS a strategy for making niche sites like this work. It goes like this…
Now, don’t be scared by that list. It’s all a lot easier than you might think, just as long as you take it step-by-step.
In fact, none of this takes much effort – if you spend 30 minutes a day on your niche site, you’ll soon be getting visitors and, eventually, sales.
I don’t claim to be an expert in doing this, I learned it from people who are experts at Wealthy Affiliate.
Wealthy Affiliate has a great set of tutorial videos aptly named “Building Your Own Traffic Producing Website“. It’s part of their Online Entrepreneur Program that you’ll get when you sign up as a member.
You can sign up for a free trial here: Get Wealthy Affiliate’s Online Entrepreneur Program Free
Take my advice: don’t do what I did and try building your first niche site based on information you’ve gleaned here and there. You’ll just fall into the ‘build it and they will come’ trap that everyone else, including me, has done.
Instead – get tutored by experts who have actually done this and made it work. I’ve been a member of Wealthy Affiliate for more than seven years. Why? Because their tutorials, continuing support and advanced tools like Keyword Research, are way more valuable than the small, monthly, outlay.
And you can get a taste of everything you need by actually building your first site: Build Your Free Website
If you’re going to do it, do it right. Don’t make the same, stupid, mistakes I did!
Today’s free training is:
In my last post here, I covered how to comply with the European regulations about General Data Protection on your blog.
Unlike the blog situation, if all you have is a squeeze page or landing page on a website, which may not even be your own (for example a Leadpages or Autoresponder site), then how to comply with GDPR has other ramifications.
As I’ve said before, I’m not legally entitled to give you advice on this and all I can do is sum up what I’ve read from people who have taken legal advice.
Let’s look, first of all, at the difficult way and easiest way to obtain someone’s consent to send them emails.
Obviously this introduces further complications viz:
Note: you cannot show a ticked checkbox already. It has to be unticked and the user has to be able to tick it to give consent.
GetResponse has decided to comply with GDPR by providing the ability for you to include this checkbox when you use one of their landing page templates.
The simpler way is to use what is called the ‘clickwrap’ method where you make the consent statement part of the clicking the Submit button process.
This is called ‘implied agreement’ because, simply by clicking the submit button, the user agrees to receive information from you.
Note: you have to tell the user what type of information they will receive from you in order to comply with GDPR on your squeeze page
This is a summation of the legal argument from the people at PageFair:
If a purpose is sufficiently specific and clear, individuals will know what to expect: the way data are processed will be predictable.’ The objective is to prevent ‘unanticipated use of personal data by the controller or by third parties and in loss of data subject control [of these personal data]
Basically, what you ask people to sign up for has to be specific, transparent, and predictable. People have to know what they’re signing up for — and sign up anyway.
Someone might not expect, for example, if they sign up for a free PDF to start getting daily emails and promotions from you.
Now the legal eagles amongst you might say this is skating on thin ice, and I’d agree with them.
But, consider this…
…the main thrust of GDPR is:
a) to protect the individual’s rights to the use of their personal data
b) to enable them to withdraw those rights at any time
c) to enable them to delete personal data you may hold about them at any time
If all you’re doing, on a squeeze page or landing page, is collecting someone’s email address (and, perhaps, their name) then you make it simple for them to withdraw their consent and delete personal data by allowing them to unsubscribe at the bottom of every email message you send.
This is what Aweber, who are sticklers for email compliance, have to say about this:
Another rumor floating around is that you need to add checkboxes to your signup forms in order to be GDPR compliant. Some are even calling these “GDPR-friendly signup forms.”
This is false. Checkboxes are not required, and are completely optional.
Nowhere in the GDPR does it state that you need to add checkboxes to your signup forms.
What it does say, however, is that you need to clearly communicate how you will be processing subscribers’ personal data, whether using a descriptive sentence or two, or using a checkbox, if you so choose.
Remember: you’re not a big company collecting personal data which may or may not be passed on to marketing departments or third parties to use. You’re just collecting an email address to send out useful information.
So, as long as you tell the person who is signing up what they can expect from you, there is implied consent when they hit the submit button. So here’s what I’m putting on my opt-in pages and pop-up forms:
Yes, I want to receive Peter’s incredible free resources, offers and training messages
And if you want to make doubly sure you have their consent, here’s what to do…
One way to ensure that you have people’s consent to receive marketing messages from you is to enable double opt-in for subscribers.
When they opt-in to your list the first email they will receive in the Inbox is a message requesting confirmation that they want to receive information from you.
Here’s a sample from Aweber:
This is the standard Aweber text. However, it doesn’t give more explicit information about what the new subscriber is about to receive.
Here’s a more informative confirmation as suggested by YourWriterPlatform:
You’ll see that Kimberley is much more explicit about what the subscriber is going to receive. You don’t have to do this but it may help if someone ever challenges the consent they have given for you to send them information in your messages.
If you want to play safe, double opt-in is the way to do it.
For the moment I’m sticking with single opt-in.
Because I’ve found that, with double opt-in, a lot of gmail users (and there are a LOT of gmail addresses used for opt-ins) don’t receive the confirmation email because it lands under their Promotions tab and they may not see it.
So, I’m keeping to single opt-in and skating the legal thin ice by covering myself with the implied consent on the squeeze page coupled to the stats that I have about my subscribers.
Both Aweber and GetResponse are fully GDPR compliant in the way they handle subscribers data, meaning that you can easily see the date a subscriber signed up and the form they used. This enables you to confirm that a subscriber did, indeed, consent to receiving your emails should there be any disagreement.
I strongly suggest that you use similar wording to mine in a footer in all your email messages.
Here’s mine and feel free to copy it and reword it for your own needs:
Reminder: This is NOT unsolicited mail
You are getting messages from me because you requested information about one of my educational videos or training products. As always with non-spam newsletters, you are free to unsubscribe at any time and you and your personal data will be removed from this list. There is a link to use at the bottom of this e-mail.
That would be a shame as you will no longer get free updates, tips and news from me if you decide to leave. And, as a subscriber, you can always reply to this email (yes, I’m a real person) whenever you need help.
Add me on Facebook: https://facebook.com/peterjcomeau
Contact me on Skype: petercomeau
By adding these to the footer of all your emails in your autoresponder (and I suggest you set up a Template to automate this) you are covering yourself against Spam and GDPR complaints with every message you send.
When I first started looking for a step-by-step plan to get rich, I was sadly disappointed that there was no-one who was prepared to tell me ‘do this, do that, get rich’.
I couldn’t understand why not? After all there were plenty of people online who were rich, or at least were telling me they were wealthy beyond dreams.
What I came to realize, after years of following this, that and the other training programs, is that most people who are claiming that they have the ‘secret’ to getting rich online only give you part of the answer.
The reason why they do this is obvious, in retrospect. By giving you part of the method, these canny marketers can then follow up with more and more ‘partial’ trainings that, hopefully, build up the complete picture.
One big problem then occurs – we call it ‘information overload’.
You end up with a hard drive littered with ‘partial’ training programs, possibly from different people, and your brain goes all fuzzy when it tries to put them all together.
And the result? You end up doing nothing.
Information overload means that, no matter how much ‘training’ you receive, you are incapable of actually making any progress because it just all seems too complicated.
Step-by-step means exactly that. You take the first step then, once you’ve crossed the starting line, take the next step, always following a clear path to your goal.
Of course, you have to set your goal in the first place. And, no, it’s not just ‘get rich’. Your initial goal has to be something definable and that you can envisage achieving.
Without a clearly defined goal, you could spend a lifetime planning how to ‘get rich’, but never, actually, take the steps to get there.
It’s highly important that each section of your step-by-step plan to get rich is something you really believe is achievable. It’s no use dreaming of becoming a billionaire if you don’t know how to make your first million. Or, indeed your first 100 grand.
And few of us really believe, in our heart of hearts, that we can make a 100 grand that easily.
So set your initial sights lower. Plan to make $10,000 first of all. Or even set your target as $1000 if you’ve never made even a dollar online before.
Then, when you’ve achieved that first target, and proved to yourself (and your friends and relations) that your step-by-step plan to get rich really works, you can set the next higher target – scale the system up and follow the path to your dream income.
None of this is difficult, providing you start with a step-by-step plan and a defined and, more importantly, believable goal.
That goal, and that plan, will be different for everybody. Because we’re not all the same. Which is why the marketers peddling their ‘partial’ get-rich-quick schemes cannot possibly give you the solution all-in-one.
And that’s why, if you’ve already tried to earn money online, you’ve failed to make it.
So your step-by-step plan to get rich must be tailored to you. It must take into account your current abilities, your short-term (as well as long-term) goal and your mindset.
By ‘mindset’ I’m not talking mamby-pamby nonsense about Law of Attraction or anything like that (there is some validity to the Law of Attraction, but it’s not what you and nearly everybody else thinks it is).
It IS so important that your mind is in the right place, both at the beginning of your training as well as how you develop confidence throughout your training. Without confidence, you won’t feel like going forward and are more likely to give up too easily – which is almost certainly why you have failed before.
It doesn’t take much to instill confidence – just a helping hand. Which is where coaching comes in.
Now, I know you may well be thinking ‘but, Peter, I can’t afford coaching’. But what if I could show you how you can get one-on-one coaching PLUS the training you need for a few tens of dollars a month – would that interest you?
It should do. I’ve a few places opening up for this opportunity right now. So hop on a call with me (it’s free) and let’s discuss your current situation, where you want to be in a year’s time and formulate a step-by-step plan to get you there.
You can schedule a call with me by clicking here. And I look forward to talking with you.
Do you know that the six richest people in the world now own more wealth than the bottom 50% of the world’s population? And here’s another breath-taking statistic – the wealthiest 1% of the population collectively have more money than the other 99%.
Because of the widening gap between rich and poor, the wealthy are able to spend billions on ridiculous extravagances.
For example Jeff Bezos, the Amazon founder, is spending $42 million on the construction of a clock designed to run for 10,000 years. The Sultan of Brunei owns 500 Rolls Royce limousines. Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, owns a collection of fully restored World War II fighter planes.
And, of course, the wealthy know how to become wealthier by making shrewd investments. Paul Allen bought the Seattle Seahawks for $200 million in 1997 – today this NFL team is worth a reputed $994 million.
What about you? If you had wealth beyond measure, with what extravagance would you indulge yourself? I’m sure you could think of something – your own island, like Richard Branson or a luxury super-yacht with gym, two swimming pools, hot tubs, disco club and luxurious apartments like Roman Abramovich.
This is, for most of us, the stuff of dreams. How about turning some of those dreams into reality?
I’m not suggesting that you can become a billionaire overnight but, with a sensible investment in yourself and your future, you can realise enough income to enjoy many of life’s luxuries.
Set your goals just a little lower, say for a new home or that expensive car you’ve always wanted, and all the things that you’ve set your heart on can become a reality.
Actually it’s remarkably simple and, each and every day, thousands of people are taking steps to invest in themselves and their future.
I’m talking about starting your own online business. It’s easier than you imagine and costs very little to get started – far less than any bricks and mortar business.
I’ve done it, I have trained others to do it and now you can do it too. All you have to do is schedule a call with me and I will map out an action plan for you. Or, if you want to know more in advance, download my new book ‘It’s Not Rocket Science’
This will also interest you: Read my Step-by-step Plan To Get Rich
Why choose affiliate marketing to kick-start your online business?
Most people who start looking for ways to earn money online begin by searching for terms like ‘best way to make money online’ or ‘how to start an online business’. They may even ask ‘how to make money fast?’ or ‘make money online for free’.
The reasons people search for terms like this is either because they are desperate to earn extra money or they are fed up with their day job. And turning to the internet to ask these questions is practically their only option. Because, unlike other professions, very few folk know of anyone who has actually succeeded running an online business.
The fact remains that there are a few people who are obviously making money – and a lot of it – using online methods. And it is also a fact that there are a lot of ‘marketers’ who put on a brave face but are actually struggling to make even a few dollars online.
You may well have heard that online sales of physical products, digital products, courses and education, increase by a staggering average of 23% every year. This growth does not look like slowing down anytime soon, and the financial transactions that these sales represent include a parallel increase in sales for advertising channels and commission earning affiliates too.
But how can you get a slice of this action for yourself? And which piece of the pie should you be looking at when you are just beginning?
After all, the usual Google search terms I’ve mentioned above give a long list of possible money making methods, including online surveys, building websites, writing content, and even something called ‘no-risk matched betting’!
But are any of these what you had in mind to kick-start your online business?
I don’t expect so. Most people seriously looking to earn online want to build a business that will provide a passive income stream, not just trade hundreds of wasted hours of their spare time for limited dollars.
Having said all of this, an interesting trend emerges when you look at the early online efforts of many of today’s top earners. A huge proportion of them (including myself) got their start by learning affiliate marketing. And what is affiliate marketing? It is simply marketing someone else’s product online in order to earn a generous commission on every sale.
And why choose affiliate marketing? For various good reasons, including the fact that you don’t need to have your own product, you don’t need your own website, you can get started very quickly, and you can also begin either for free, or for a very low investment of under about $20.
However, there is another reason to choose affiliate marketing as the place to begin your online business – one not usually recognized or valued. This reason is that, even though affiliate marketing itself is a simple system to learn, the activities you engage in while you build each affiliate marketing campaign actually expand your skill set as you progress.
This means that – unlike writing articles, filling out surveys, or even building websites – by learning affiliate marketing you will be exposed more and more to the key ingredients of long-term online success; skills like social media marketing, advertising strategies and relationship building. In other words, choosing affiliate marketing is a sound way to launch a potentially great online career.
Start learning to be a successful affiliate by scheduling a free strategy session with me today. I’ll show you the quickest way to get started and what it takes to build a 6 figure income in your first few months…
If you’re considering earning money online you may well be stumped by a very real initial hurdle: where to start?
Whether you currently have a ‘day job’ or are looking to earn some money in your spare time, or simply want to improve your standard of living, you’ve probably heard of people who make a full-time living simply by running an internet business.
You may even have been so excited by this idea that you’ve started investigating these claims. If so you’ve almost certainly come to the conclusion that nothing in your life up until now had prepared you for the unique skill of learning online. What’s even worse is that you can’t even seem to find out where to even begin to make a start.
So what is the easiest way to start an online business? (And it is important here to stress that it is a consistent income-earning business we want to build, and not just how to make an occasional $20 for one-off online tasks, such as selling on eBay.)
The answer to this, whether it is for an online or offline business, is that we need something to sell and someone to sell it to.
That’s it, in a nutshell. That’s all there is to it!
If that sounds too simplistic to you then that is simply because you don’t know, yet, what that ‘something’ is that you should be selling and who that ‘someone’ is that you should be selling to.
‘Yes, but surely,’ I hear you object, ‘you also need to advertise, or how will your customers know to buy from you? And how do you know what they really want?’
Of course these are very real considerations. But we are looking at the easiest way to start an online business, and in this easiest of ways we are going to avoid much of the complications that a business normally involves. Let me explain.
Imagine you live in a warm climate, and your friend’s father has an ice cream delivery round. He has recently bought a bigger truck and is looking to add more regular customers to his round. He mentions to you that he will pay $5 for every new customer you can sign up for his business. He even has professionally produced advertising flyers designed to attract new customers, and he can let you have as many as you want.
For a few minutes you think about the work it would take to spend your weekends walking around countless neighbourhoods putting these flyers into letterboxes. Then suddenly you remember another friend of yours who has a large community newspaper round, and you offer to pay him 2c per flyer to put these into letterboxes along with the papers he is delivering anyway. He agrees, and it turns out to be a win-win-win situation.
As an ‘affiliate marketer’, you are simply the middle man who is connecting potential buyers to a seller. You do not need to create your own product to sell because you are selling a product for someone else. You also do not need to know lots of customers yourself, because you can use the services, for a small fee, of someone who already has an existing relationship with a large number of potential customers.
Frankly speaking, that is why starting out as an affiliate marketer is the easiest way to start an online business.
All you have to do is connect the dots. And to help you do that I’m happy to prepare an action plan with you…
What they are really wondering is this…
Is Affiliate Marketing a scam or a legitimate business opportunity?
So, what’s the answer?
It’s a two-faced answer to a two-faced question. It can be a scam. Or it can be a legitimate business opportunity.
What do I mean by this?
There are plenty of business opportunities being offered every day, most of which purport to show you how to make a small fortune (or even a big one) using affiliate marketing.
If you don’t know what affiliate marketing is, it is where you promote another vendor’s product or training and get paid a commission every time someone you’ve sent to the sales page actually buys.
Frankly, it is the fastest way of starting a lucrative online business. Because, as an affiliate, you don’t have to create your own products, your own sales pages or deal with product fulfilment and customer complaints etc.
And that’s where the problem lies.
Because it so easy to begin as an affiliate, affiliate marketing generates lots of vendors who peddle products that appeal to the ‘get-rich-quick’ crowd.
And there are plenty of ‘get-rich-quick’ mentality affiliates who try to sell every product under the sun, whether it has any value or not.
It is these vendors, and their affiliates, who give affiliate marketing and its training products a bad name. And provoke many people to call anything to do with affiliate marketing a scam.
Not everything about affiliate marketing is bad or scammy. There are many ethical and long-lasting business opportunities open to you as a budding affiliate.
You just need to know how to find them.
First of all, just jumping into affiliate marketing without any training is not going to get you anywhere.
Imagine if you were starting your own retail business – and trying to do it all on your own, without any help. Do you think you would succeed?
Of course not. The chances of succeeding in any business without either having a partner or a mentor, as well as hands-on training, are as close to zero as makes no odds.
Yet that is exactly what most new affiliates try to do. It’s not surprising that 97% of them never make a dime online!
I’ll let you into a secret. I spent the best part of ten years trying to crack affiliate marketing by doing it on my own. And had very limited to practically no success.
It wasn’t until I realised that I couldn’t possibly do it all myself, without someone showing me whether I was doing things right or wrong, that I began to make some headway.
I got myself a mentor, plus the focused training I needed, and that’s when my online business really began to take off.
I don’t suggest that you go out there and start searching for coaching and training. I’ve found, to my cost, that a lot of coaching and training programs just end up confusing you.
Which is why I’m offering my help.
No, I’m not going to directly coach you myself. But I can help point you towards programs that I’ve used myself so that I know that they will help you become successful.
To find out what those are just fill out this short survey and let’s have a chat about the opportunities open to you. It won’t cost you anything and you’ll come away from our call with an action plan you can use to get started immediately.
Starting an online business sounds like an intriguing idea, even if it seems like a mysterious undertaking for most. But is it something that the average person would actually be wise to consider doing, or is it just for the geeks and superpreneurs among us?
It may surprise you to discover that starting an online business is relatively easy for the ordinary person, and for some very sound reasons.
Firstly, in terms of economics the ‘world of work’ is undergoing dramatic and irreversible changes these days.
Up until a generation ago, although technology might replace an individual human job (such as a switchboard operator), it also enabled a firm to scale up and grow, resulting in an increased need for employees overall. In other words, technological advances increased the productivity of the workers, but it did not eliminate whole sectors of the workforce.
Today, however, things have changed.
Automation has truly made many traditional occupations entirely redundant, and sometimes retraining for new work opportunities is impossible. Higher education is also changing towards an online delivery model in place of face-to-face teaching. In view of these trends, starting an online business is a smart way to hedge against future corporate downsizing and lay-offs.
Another obvious benefit of starting an internet business is to cash in on the swing towards online shopping, and away from traditional consumer purchasing behavior. And of course it’s not just about shopping – so much of people’s lives and communication relies on the internet that, as a marketer, getting online means getting in front of your audience in the most effective way possible.
As an entrepreneur, the decision to shape your business using an online platform is one that will minimise the usual risks of starting up. For example, the capital needed to get to operational stage with an online business can be as little as about $200, compared to the huge conventional costs of retail shopfitting, signage, purchasing inventory, leasing and other brick-and-mortar expenditure.
A ‘virtual’ business can be almost free of overheads, as well as avoiding many of the other structural limitations that go with physical stores. You can literally run your online business from anywhere in the world, using a laptop and internet connection.
Running an online business is a flexible sideline that almost anyone can learn to do.
Successful online businesses have generated liberating levels of income for people of every age bracket, background and academic achievement, and can be begun while still working or studying fulltime.
In light of today’s social and commercial trends, and in order to generate your dream lifestyle in the future, starting an online business is your quickest route to financial freedom.
Find out the right way to start your own online business, today, by having a chat with me about the opportunities open to you right now…