Who am I?
I’m just like you.
My name is Stone. I’m married with two daughters and like most of you reading this post, I would love to be financially independent and retire early (also known as FIRE).
All the financial podcasts out there suggest a place to start is to find a second income stream that requires minimal effort once established. Blogging seems to fit the bill⸺but where to begin?
In the past, I dabbled with websites and blogs, especially in the days before social media. Back then I used Google’s Blogger platform and created posts to update my extended family on my travels.
I recently had the urge to write again, but I wanted to do it right this time, learn about search engine optimization (SEO), and how to earn income from my content.
I researched the best way to get started and what tools to use. I wanted to use WordPress this time around because it is the world’s most popular content management system powering 34% of all websites on the internet.
My goal: generate an income stream from my content that allows me to live and work from anywhere. Sound appealing so far? Then read on…
I knew I had to learn Affiliate marketing; however, I was wary of all the scams out there. Scams that claim to teach you affiliate marketing and leave you high and dry.
Google and Youtube are filled with cheesy click funnels that lure you in with the promise of giving away get-rich-quick secrets for free, only to tell you you have to pay thousands more to have the best chance of success.
Just open Youtube right now, and you’ll probably be met with a paid ad featuring some guy on the beach taking a selfie video that starts with, “Guys, how would you like to make $10,000 a day and you don’t have to do anything? Click the link below for my live training that starts in a few minutes.”
There is usually a countdown timer for a FOMO effect to prompt you to act now. The “training” isn’t live but pre-recorded. It is designed to upsell to a high-priced masterclass or self-paced program once you are well into the video and emotionally invested.
I can’t remember who said this, but I think it sums up all the internet gurus.
“Nobody will share their secret to get rich unless you are their way of getting rich.”unknown
What is Affiliate Marketing?
“Affiliate marketing is an advertising model in which a company pays others (e.g., bloggers) to advertise their products and services and generate sales. Affiliates place ads or market the products or services on their website, app, or blog. Commissions are paid on leads that convert to sales.” ~ Investopedia
You may have heard of cookies. These are little bits of text sent to your web browser when you visit a site. It helps that site remember you.
The links the company gives an affiliate to promote products are unique to that affiliate. So if I have a link on my site for a coffee maker on Amazon and someone clicks it and purchases, I’ll get credit for that sale because of my unique link and earn a commission.
But what about people that don’t buy right then but come back later and purchase? This situation is where cookies come in.
In the case of Amazon, if the user comes back within 24 hours and completes a purchase, I’ll still earn a commission as Amazon will remember that user from the cookie. On a side note, with Amazon, you get a commission on whatever they purchased in the cart that session (not just that one item) which could be quite a nice payout.
While Amazon’s cookie duration is only 24 hours, other companies have 30 days or even longer durations. A commission is paid for any sale if a user returns within that time.
So What is Wealthy Affiliate?
Wealthy Affiliate (WA) is a company that specializes in helping regular people make affiliate income. Membership provides ongoing self-paced and live education, a website platform (SiteRubix), WordPress hosting with free SSL, domain registration, and access to the entire Wealthy Affiliate community. If you have a question, you will get an answer very quickly.
New bloggers will learn the ins and outs of creating content that people will search for and build up a successful high-traffic site.
You need great content to show up on the first page of Google search results. That is the essential first step. Once you have some traffic, you dive into placing affiliate offers on your site to create an income stream.
The great thing is that Wealthy Affiliate has everything you need to get started and supports you from beginner to expert. You can immediately launch one website with a free membership (no credit card required).
The free Core Certification and Affiliate Bootcamp course will help choose a niche topic with low competition on Google, Bing, or Yahoo. The more specific the niche, the greater chance a blog will stand out in search results.
Wealthy Affiliate’s Credentials
These people put in the hard work, and it’s paying off, whether it’s in recurring income, achieving 300 sales referrals and earning a trip to the Affiliate Conference in Las Vegas, or selling a successful high traffic website for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Free Plan vs. Premium
Test the waters without the risk. Practice building a website, be a sponge and absorb all the knowledge you can from the WA community and the free training. Start building up your site through regular, frequent quality posts on topics within your niche.
With the free plan, you get 1 website to create. On the Premium plan, you can have up to 10 websites hosted by Wealthy Affiliates. There is also a Premium Plus plan which supports up to 50 websites.
As you can see below, the value is fantastic.
Once you are a part of the Wealthy Affiliate community, I’ll be available along with all the other members to answer any of your questions. You will get a 61% discount on the first month of Premium membership when you sign up (only $19 for the first month).
So Let’s Explore all the Cool Things you Get with Wealthy Affiliate
The Online Entrepreneur Certification covers everything at a high level but with enough detail to get you started on the right path. When you complete it, you will have your content niche decided, and your website will be up and running. You will even have live affiliate links and may even be earning some money at this point.
Affiliate Bootcamp dives deeper into getting those affiliate links live and converting your visitors into customers once you send them over to the affiliate’s website. Many people start with Amazon as it is pretty easy to be accepted into their program.
The access to fantastic training increases exponentially if you sign up for Premium Plus. You get access to 100s of great classes like these from top members.
Don’t just write a random article. Leverage your free access to Jaxxy to do targeted keyword research to pick a low-competition keyword that you can sprinkle throughout your post so that it ranks on the first page of Google’s search results. You can guarantee that the most eyeballs will see your article.
QSR, for example, tells you how many websites Google indexed with the same keyword phrase. The lower the number, the less competition for you to rank on page one. Traffic gives you an idea of how many visitors your site would get if you rank. Avg gives you the average number of searches for that keyword per month.
There are so many tools to manage your website. Two features I love are Site Feedback and Site Comments. Request and get feedback on your site from other WA members. Unbiased feedback will help you evaluate your blog to improve your user experience.
Site Comments are a great way to get comments on your posts. Google will treat your content as higher quality if you have evidence of engagement with your audience. For every two posts that you comment on, you can request one comment for your post. It’s a great way the community helps each other out.
Many experienced members share their expertise and give back by answering the questions of other members.
The more interactive you are, the higher your rank will be on WA. The site even has an internal blog for users to post their journey (like a journal) for others to learn from. It’s not required but helps foster the sense of community that exists with Wealthy Affiliate.
I know this opportunity is something you have wanted to try, a way to create side income or eventually leave your 9 to 5 job altogether. You will never climb the mountain if you don’t take the first step. Give it a try risk-free. There is no way you can go through the free training and not learn something valuable.