Seanology

Making Money Online – Information, Ideas, and Reviews

Monday
Nov 19,2007

I know I haven’t been posting here much lately and I have good reason. Besides the fact my 2 kids keep me busy at every free moment (which I wouldn’t trade for anything), I have been diligently learning the affiliate marketing game. In the coming days I will share with you the single greatest resource you can have if you are serious about making money with PPC online. It is simply the best and has helped me in motivating me to set my goals.

I feel that goal setting is as effective as it gets, if you don’t set goals your will never achieve them. And even more so, if you post your goals for others to see you have made a commitment even greater than to yourself to achieve them! With that said, here are my PPC goals for upcoming 6 months:

I think they might be a bit modest considering what I am currently learning, but I want to start realistically. Hopefully in a month or two I will update this post and completely revise my goals upwards

Working backwards to forwards, my goal is to reach $5000 per month net profit. I want to do this at the end of 6 months. So if I set a start date of December 1st for this goal, I want to make a $5000 profit for the month of May 2008. I also am going to assume a modest 50% ROI to begin and get that up to 75% by May 2008. While this sounds insane in the normal investing world, 100% ROI is extremely likely. This is based on my current knowledge which should increase as I learn more. Again, hopefully I can revise these goals upwards in a month or two.

Using my newfound knowledge for 14 days now these are the numbers I have been able to attain.

Total Conversions: $481.85
Total Cost: $288.32
Total Profit: $193.53 (a 67% ROI!)

At this pace without doing anything else (starting more campaigns, learning more, etc.), I should profit ~$340 this month. Of course, I plan on increasing this as much as possible!

So here are my goals broken down by month. Hopefully by May 2008 I will have reached my goal!

I would love to hear your goals too.  Please feel free to post in the comments!

Monday
Nov 12,2007

Following up on my previous post about creating profitable PPC campaigns using zip submits, I figured I would update you as to where I stand as of today. Here are my stats through 7 days (including today which just started):

Conversions: $177.10
Advertising Cost: $112.51
Profit: $64.59 (57.41% return!)

Now we’re talking! I have been able to get my ROI up pretty good in the past few days as I continually learn new tips and tricks. At this rate I would be profiting about $275 per month. But I feel this is just the beginning 🙂 . I have put together some PPC goals that I will be posting either today or tomorrow. By posting my goals, I will be committed to making them happen.

Thursday
Nov 8,2007

I have been burying myself into intense research the last few days to try and figure out how to make some money with Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising. There are plenty of ways to do this that I have discussed before such as promoting affiliate products. Up until this point, I only considered trying to promote offers that pay very highly, like $20.00 per sale or lead. I have now learned that my thinking was flawed and I should be thinking outside of the box. There is great money to be made one penny at a time with easier offers to convert.

This leads me to tell you about zip submit campaigns. Much like making money from email lists, you can make money from these campaigns as well.

What does “zip submit” mean? It means that you drive traffic to an offer for some sort of giveaway and get the user to simply submit their zip code. Once they submit their zip code, you get paid! It doesn’t matter if they complete the whole offer or not. These have such a high conversion rate since there is little fear in giving away your zip code (as opposed to your email address), but of course, they pay out low.

I have been running a campaign for the last 3 days on an offer to get a free digital camera. This is another great offer from Hydra Networks, my affiliate network of choice for these things. The offer only pays $1.15 for each zip code submission, so you have to be creative on how to promote it.

Here are my results for the first 3 days:

Conversions: $33.35
Advertising Cost: $27.86
Profit: $5.49 (19.71% return!)

So, I am pretty happy with this so far. I know $5.00 isn’t a lot of money, but a 20% return isn’t too shabby. This is without really refining my efforts yet (as I learn more). My goal is to get my return up to 50%. Meanwhile I will start more new campaigns every day to increase my volume and return.

Friday
Nov 2,2007

Anyone who is starting a business, or simply runs a small business, needs business cards. If you are on a tight budget, spending that extra cash for 1000 business cards might be too much. Well, how about some free business cards from VistaPrint?

VistaPrint offers some great prices on business cards, postcards, promotional materials, etc. But they are best know for their free business card offer.

I myself have business cards made from VistaPrint, although I paid for them as I wanted to make a custom design. I have to say I am happy with the quality and the price I paid.

After you have printed up your free cards, ask me how you can earn good money telling people about free business cards! 😉

Thursday
Nov 1,2007

In the spirit of John chow reporting his monthly blog earnings, I too have decided to share with the world my income. If you recall my September earnings report, you will remember that I earned a whopping $0.00 from Seanology.com! So, my headline is not at deceiving as if I earned anything it would be a 100% increase, right? 😉

For the month of October I earned $.65! Here is the breakdown of my record breaking month!

Adsense Earnings: $.22
WidgetBucks Earnings : $.43

In actuality, this total number really doesn’t matter. I plan on writing a post soon as to why I don’t care if I earn 65 cents a month or 65 dollars a month from this blog.

Of course, this blog is not my real earner. I have a bunch of sites that I manage which I have detailed in the past. A couple of those I have highlighted with a few experiments. I would like to keep you up to date on how they are all panning out so you see if I am successful or not.

The first of the two is my Tiger Army Experiment. In my first month of running the site (September), it earned me $1.67, for October it earned me $2.56.  The positive thing is that it is increasing.  I need to do some promotion to get this higher.

I also wrote a post on how to quickly increase your Adsense earnings which detailed that I added a search box to one of my sites.   It performed quite well for me adding $23.81 to my pocket.  Not bad for 5 minutes worth of work!

How are your sites doing?  Are you making any money yet?

Friday
Oct 26,2007

If you haven’t already heard about WidgetBucks, I will give you a brief overview. The topic of who they are and what they do has been covered in detail in the blogosphere. Basically, WidgetBucks is another ad network that you can add to your site to earn a little extra income.

The cool thing about WidgetBucks is that you are promoting products for sale, however you are getting paid per click instead of paid per action (purchashing the product). You can also earn money by referring people to WidgetBucks. New users get an instant $25 just for signing up!

Here is a WidgetBucks example:

WidgetBucks - Trend Watch - WidgetBucks.com

I am going to give this a try and replace the AuctionAds I have running on my popular website. I will post later as to why I am replacing AuctionAds, but basically because it is not performing well this month for me.

One last note, I signed up using a referral link of one of our readers 🙂 This means for everything I earn on this program, this person will get a percentage paid back into their account. All this for free because they read my blog and simply asked nicely if I would sign up using their referral link. It pays to read Seanology.com!

Thursday
Oct 25,2007

It seems as though Google is at it again! It has been widely publicized that yesterday major blogging and news sites (and others) received a reduction in pagerank. The speculation is that Google is looking for people that are selling text links on their sites, which they apparently frown upon. Here are a few major sites with noted changes:

  1. Problogger – 6 to 4
  2. John Chow – 6 to 4
  3. Washington Post – 7 to 5
  4. Forbes – 7 to 5
  5. Engadget -7 to 5
  6. Seanology 0 to 0 (at least I didn’t fall!)

The real question is, should you care? Well, if you are doing all the right things on your site then the answer is no. Pagerank is a made up number from Google that they control. What you should really be concerned about is if your site has traffic, return visitors, and if it is performing up to standards. None of this should be controlled by pagerank. Of course, DoshDosh has a great post entitled: Google PageRank Doesn’t Matter. Can We Stop Talking about it Now?

Has your site been affected?

Monday
Oct 22,2007

Here is a little update on my affiliate marketing experiment. As you might remember from my previous post, my first campaign didn’t go so well. So I tried to refine a few things and take another shot at it.

The key to being successful at this technique is constant monitoring. What might be working one day may not work the next. Why? Because competition is always changing. You could have someone bidding on the same affiliate domain, thereby increasing the bid amount you have to pay to have your ad shown. Or there could be increased competition on your converting keywords. In either scenario, you must constantly watch your metrics.

For this second experiment I chose to promote another Clickbank product using Adwords ( )while sending them directly to the affiliate offer. This particular product pays out $26.29 for each completed sale. That gave me a little room to try and play with keywords and such to figure out what would work.

So, what were my results? Well, in the end I lost money again! 🙁 However, I feel that it was really my own fault because I ended up neglecting the campaign due to other work obligations. But I was doing pretty well to start with. Here is a spreadsheet of what went down:

Adwords and Clickback Results

Those last couple of days I tried to experiment with increasing my CPC in order to get my ad shown higher in list. It ended up burning up a quick $18.00 with no return! It was then I stopped the campaign as I was not committing the proper time to managing it.

What I learned from this experiment is 1) You can DEFINITELY make money simply sending traffic to affiliate sites using Adwords (you don’t even need your own website) and 2) You must be committed to monitoring your campaign.

The one thing I do know is that you can greatly increase your ROI by having your own website landing pages. But of course, that takes time to build. . . I am going to do this for the next iteration of this series as I already have a domain name picked out and some ideas flowing. I just have to get the time committed to make it happen!

Friday
Oct 19,2007

Have you seen this site yet??? This had me on the floor laughing! It is a parody of two of the greatest online internet marketers John Chow and Shoemoney. Check out the hideous picture of their evil spawn!

The Birth of an Evil Marketer With Skills to Pay the Bills | ChowMoney.com

This is a great example again of viral marketing. Although the site is new, with a few big link backs on prominent sites (mine isn’t there yet 😉 ), this could become something relevant. Which of course means making money (or making cents in Chowmoney’s case!)

Wednesday
Oct 17,2007

If you have already been in the affiliate marketing game for a while, you already understand the benefit of collecting emails and creating campaigns for your interested members. If not, let me explain a little bit.

One of the best ways to make sales is to target exactly those people that are most likely to buy. Let’s say you have a site about vegetarian recipes. Maybe you create a newsletter that sends out a new recipe directly to subscriber’s mailboxes once a week. This is a service they are requesting of you and are glad to give you their email. So how do you capitalize on this? You provide relevant helpful offers to them as well in the newsletter.

Hydra Network Affiliate MarketingRecently I joined an affiliate network called Hydra Network. The beauty about Hydra Network is that they provide excellent offers that are suited especially for email lists. In other words, there are offers that you can include in your newsletters (and also websites and PPC campaigns if you wish) that convert well. Offers are constantly changing too, so there is always something new.

One thing users love is getting something for free. Here is an example of an offer to receive a $500 gift card for filling out some basic information and participating in surveys and sponsor offers.

Want great food free? (participation required. see below for details.)
Your choice – TGI Friday’s® or Chili’s®. $500 gift card.

Get a $500 gift card to the restaurant of your choice – TGI Friday’s® or Chili’s®.

Inner Concepts, Inc | 297 Kingsbury Grade #D | PO Box 4470 | Stateline, NV 89449-4470To receive the incentive gift you must: 1) register with valid information; 2)complete the user survey; 3) complete at least 2 Silver, 2 Gold, 2 Platinum offer; and 4) refer 1 unique household(s) that also complete these requirements. Purchase may be required. Please read website Terms & Conditions for details. Upon completion of all requirements, we will ship the incentive gift to you with free shipping.

GreatFood4Free is an independent rewards program for consumers and is not affiliated with, sponsored by or endorsed by any of the listed products or retailers. Trademarks, service marks, logos, and/or domain names (including, without limitation, the individual names of products and retailers) are the property of their respective owners. Copyright 2006 GreatFood4Free.com. All rights reserved.

Then all the user needs to do is submit their email address on the first page for you to get paid. It really doesn’t matter if they follow through with all of the requirements as your incentive is to get them to submit their email address. Upon completion of the first page, you receive $1.30 from each participant! So let’s do some quick math: if you have a list with say 10k subscribers and you send out this offer in your newsletter, I would say there is a good chance you can get 1% to fill out the form. 1% would equal a profit of $130.00! That wouldn’t be too bad for 5 minutes worth of work.