Making Money Online – Information, Ideas, and Reviews

Sep 29,2007

In a follow up to my post Quick Tip to Increase Your Adsense Earnings, I went ahead and implemented an Adsense search box on my best performing Adsense site. Since I put it in an area near the bottom, the only people that would be using it is probably ready to leave the site anyway, so why not get a click or two from them?

So how is it performing? Take a look at the screenshot and you will see:

Adsense for Search

Since I have put it on, I am averaging $.27 per day. I know it’s not a lot, but I’ll take an extra $8.10 per month for a simple 5 minute change any day!

Sep 28,2007

Here are my favorite keyword tools to use when starting any online campaign. There are also some great paid tools, but I will cover them in a later post. For now, enjoy these:

Free Keyword Tools

Google Keyword Tool
The Google keyword tool is great because it is free. It shows you historical trends on selected keywords over the last 12 months. It also has the ability to analyze a particular site or page and tell you what the best keyword combination would be. You can also get estimated costs per click when using Adwords.

Overture Keyword Selector Tool
This is the original keyword research tool. It does provide lots of valuable information and variations on the term you provide, however it is so widely used that it makes it hard to use as an advantage over your competition.

Digital Point Keyword Tool
This tool uses both Overture data as well as free Wordtracker data and compares them side by side for you.

Microsoft Labs Keyword Forecast Tool
This tool displays trends on a particular keyword as well as shows you demographics on who is searching for these words.

Keyword Map
An interesting tool to use to see how keywords are related

SEO Company Keyword Tool
A simple interface to show you search queries volume and related information

SEO Book Keyword Suggestion Tool
Quite possibly the most comprehensive free tool available. Try it out and you will see!

Do you have any other suggestions for free keyword tools? If so, please leave your favorites in a comment

Sep 27,2007

Yesterday I decided to start a campaign promoting a product from Clickbank. Clickbank is an affiliate network that specialized in digital products such as e-books and software downloads.

If done right, you can make a lot of money marketing these products. BUT, it’s not easy! You have to learn the in’s and out’s which can take months. I have been reading and reading and decided it was time to take action.

I basically followed the plan laid out in Google Profits. This is a great comprehensive step by step guide as to how to use Adwords to drive traffic to a Clickbank product. The great part of this system is that you don’t need a website to start. So basically, anyone can do this. But like anything else it takes patience and time to become successful.

My plan is to try out 3-5 products until I find one that is working for me. I picked one yesterday and started promoting it. I got some great keywords and a good click through, but did not get a sale 🙁 I have concluded based on my campaign that this product is not converting.

I ended up spending $29.72 and received 172 clicks with no conversions. Tomorrow, I will move on to another product! Typically 6-8 out of 10 will not be profitable, but once you find the profitable one it can be very lucrative. Stay tuned for more updates!

Sep 26,2007

Just so you know, I am not just talking about making money online, I am making money online. I have been dabbling with Google Adsense now for about a year and a half with Adsense earning sites like these. Some become successful, and others make me just a few pennies.

Well yesterday I posted my best day ever with earnings of $48.32. While this does not make me rich (yet) it is motivating enough to make me want to continue to push forward. If I kept this up, it would equate to $1500 per month. Not too bad. I know there are plenty of people out there that are becoming Gazillionaires with Google Adsense that might think this is peanuts, but I am pretty happy.

What happened yesterday that made my earnings increase? Well, from what I can tell a network of sites that I have about a particular topic is simply paying more. There is about the same traffic, but the eCPM has more than doubled. Up until 2 days ago the eCPM was averaging somewhere around $7.00 for this topic, but yesterday it capped out at $19.09. Will it continue? I sure hope so!

Meanwhile, why don’t you sign up for Adsense and start making sites of your own? 🙂

Sep 25,2007

Building an effective landing page is one of the keys to success in PPC affiliate marketing. You can have the best campaign in the world, but if your landing page is ineffective, you will not convert your sales.

In the next week or two I am going to build a complete campaign using Adwords to drive traffic to a site with effective landing pages. I will chronicle the steps I am taking along the way to let you know how successful I am. Meanwhile, step one in the process is to build the pages that will sell my product.

Here are a few essential steps you should take when building your landing page to ensure the highest conversion and ROI (Return on Investment).

Page Layout

  • Make sure your page is laid out to show the most relevant information above the fold. This means it should be in the viewable area you see immediately without having to scroll down.
  • It is also good to use lots of graphics. Graphics and pictures sell products!
  • Branding is important too. Place your company (or affiliate) logo to ensure the customer they are making a safe purchase.
  • Be sure to have a Privacy Policy linked in the footer.

Content and Writing Style

  • Use keywords that are relevant to your campaign. Place these near the top to further comfort the customer that they are getting exactly what they are searching for. It is a bad idea to use deceptive keywords just to get people to click on the ad and come to your site. These people will just leave anyways and not complete a sale which inflates your cost per click.
  • Make forms easy to fill out. Do not add unnecessary fields. Try to capture the least amount of information possible to get your customer to continue.
  • The headline is the single most important piece of copy on the page. It should correspond exactly to the offer you are driving.

Call to Action

  • Use persuasive copy to encourage your visitors to complete your offer.
  • Create buttons that have direct instructions. Instead of saying “Click Here”, try to say “Get Your Free Ringtone Now!”

These are just a few of the most important essential tips for your landing page. Creating a landing page is a continual process. The best thing you can do is test, test, test! Sometimes changing one word or one color can make a huge difference.

Here are a few more resources to getting you on your way to a great converting landing page:

Article on SEOmoz

20 Guide lines to create successful landing pages

How to create a Landing Page that complies to the Google AdWords guidelines

Sep 24,2007

Here is a quick tip to increase your Adsense earnings. Add a Google Search box! One of the types of advertisements Google offers is called Adsense for Search.

To place a search box within your site:

  • Log into your Adsense account and click on Adsense Setup
  • Select Adsense for Search
  • Select the options of how you want the search box to look and whether you want it to search just google, or your site, or both.
  • Copy and paste the code into your site!

Here is a search box that I created. I prefer not to use the Google logo as to make it appear blended in the site better.

The best place to use this would be somewhere below the fold of the page. If users get down that far in the page and are ready to leave your site, why not have them give you a little revenue on the way out?

Sep 23,2007

Beginners are overwhelmed at where to start when making money online. I hope my blog eases that anxiety a little bit by providing tips and tricks to help you take your ideas to fruition. However, I cannot possibly cover every topic in the book and there are way more successful people out there than me.

If you want to learn from the best, then I suggest you frequent these site:

John Chow dot com – John is self proclaimed Dot Com Mogul, and he has the stats to back it up! He earned $17,828.61 last month alone just from his blog. But that doesn’t even take into account his other ventures like The Tech Zone. John provides great resources and insights into making money online.

Shoemoney – If you don’t know who Shoemoney is, it’s time to start reading his blog! He is the affiliate king. He has been capitalizing on ringtones since he started and recently created and sold off AuctionAds. His blog is a great mix of information, humor, and personal thoughts.

Digital Point Forums – The authoritative site for everything to do with the web. Have a question? Ask it here and you will be sure to get answers. They have great resources for affiliate marketers, Adsense experts, web design, business and more.

These are a few of the essential sites to get you started and motivated on your way to making money online. I read these websites daily.

Sep 22,2007

It is well known that submitting your site to directories can benefit you by creating backlinks. Since the explosion of blogging online, directories have been created that cater only to blogs. Below is a list of directories obtained from the Google Directory exclusively designed for blogs along with the Page Rank of each blog. Not all are free, but they are worth checking out. I am going to go through these one by one and add Seanology to them in hopes to get more people reading my blog!

Lists weblogs by category. Users are invited to post reviews.
Blog Toplist
Categorized and sorted by popularity.
Blog Universe
Directory of weblogs as submitted and categorized by the site owners. Weblog, podcast, and video log directory.
Human-edited directory.
Research Blogs
An annotated list that can be used by researchers and academics.
The Ageless Project
Web logs by birthdate. Includes screenshots of the front page of each blog listed.
Kmax Blog Links
Alphabetical list. Links to weblog related resources. Top 20 ranking of the most popular and frequently updated weblogs.
Blog Watch
Categorized directory with latest post excerpts.
Listings by country and category.
Quick Blog Directory
Organized by category.
Alliance Of The Anonymous
Lists members who have posted the organization logo on their blog.
Allows users to rate listings in the directory.
Start4all: Weblogs
Startpage with links of webloggers. This page contains bloggers all over the world with interesting stories. Also links of famous webloggers and weblog tools, media, portals and meetings.
Delightful Blogs
Reviewed for personality.
Blog Ratings
Allows users to post and read ratings and reviews of sites organized by topic. Part of the Ratingz network.
Sep 21,2007

Book CoverSuccess is a Choice is the title of a book I read many years ago by basketball coach Rick Pitino. The title couldn’t say it any better: success IS a choice. You make choices every day that affect how successful you will be. If you make the right choices, you will succeed. And even if you make the wrong choices, you will learn from them and continue to make better choices.

The single most important lesson I have learned so far to be successful, whether it is with making money online or anything else in life is to JUST DO IT! I know it sounds cliche, but it’s true. I spent many days thinking about starting this blog, wondering what I would write, and wondering if people would read it until one day I made the choice to start it. It is in that moment of decision that success is attained. After all, success is a journey, not a destination.

Often times people make excuses because they feel too overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. Sometimes you need someone to point you in the right direction and give you a boost of encouragement. That’s why I am here. If you have any questions, want some guidance, or want to bounce off some ideas, please leave a comment.

In the online money-making world the key to success is knowledge. Knowledge is king. The more you know about how things work, the more money you will make. And don’t for one minute think this is easy. As with anything in life it requires passion, persistence, and hard work. Hence another reason I started this blog. By writing every day about the topic of making money online, I am immersing myself into a committment. Statistics show that if you write about what you learn you retain more in the long run. So, my blog is not only a learning tool for you, but a learning tool for me too.

Are you ready yet? Get up and do something RIGHT NOW that will take you one step closer to your goals!

Sep 20,2007

In order to make money on a site, you need to get traffic. Today I will continue my series of posts explaining the exact steps that I am taking to try and make my Tiger Army website successful.

After I redesigned the site I went ahead and started to submit the site to the search engines. Of course, I started with the big 3 and submitted using these URLs:

Once I took care of those 3, I went ahead and added to a few other well know directories and search engines such as:

Once I was done with these submissions, I went ahead and added a link to each of my other sites that are related to music and entertainment. I have a couple of these types sites, so they all help each other when they are linked together and are relevant.

Lastly, I posted a message on the Digital Point forums requesting a link exchange with my music site. Quite often there are people out there that are willing to exchange with you since they are in the same boat as you.

Next, I may spend some money (under $10) and hire someone to submit the site to a bunch of directories. The value of directory links is declining, but it is still good for building links which most search engines like.

Oh yeah, one more thing is that the previous owner added a link to the Tiger Army Wikipedia page. This will also help drive people to the site.