Internet marketing exists as one of the more obscure ways to make money online in the sense that seemingly very few people ever make a return – or do they? I’ve been involved in internet marketing for roughly 3-years now, and although that’s not a huge length of time I’ve been able to build up a successful niche website to the point of it bringing in over $5k /month.
Yes, a single niche website with a marketing budget of $0 putting $5000+ USD in my pocket every month is completely possible. Not just for me, but it’s possible for you as well.
November 2016 actually brought in just shy of $6500 USD, if you really wanted to get technical.
I’m not saying this to brag, or gloat, because in all honesty $5k/month is not a lot of money to a lot of people; but why I’m telling you this is for 1, to get you enticed (hey, I’m honest), and 2, so you know that something is possible.
What isn’t possible is this, or anything even remotely close to it, happening overnight. If that’s what you’re looking for, I’m sorry but it just isn’t possible short of winning the lottery.
Anyways, let’s go through how I went about doing things, so you can get a good idea of how not to 🙂
Lots of Time
Internet marketing takes A LOT of time to see any kind of worthwhile return. Don’t get me wrong, there are exceptions, but they are very few and very far between. Most people will say that it takes 6 months before you see anything, but I think the average is closer to a year in all honesty. Luckily, internet marketing doesn’t take a huge investment before you can get going, a domain name costs about $10/year and hosting can run as little as $10/month depending on where you’re at.
I’m not joking when I say that it’ll take lots of time, there’s a huge amount of information that you have to learn and lots of skills which you have to become proficient at. Personally, I spent a good 2-years learning, doing things wrong, and learning some more before I ever saw my first dollar.
Thinking back, it probably only took me that long because I tried doing things my way, had I followed the instructions and training which I had access to at the time, things no doubt would have come together sooner.
You’ll have to learn things like:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- How to write content
- Finding good keywords
- How to use WordPress (or another CMS)
- How to effectively use social media to reach your audience
- How to perform competition research
Sounds like a lot, right? That’s because it is, and I didn’t even list everything, those are just some of the more important points! This is the primary reason why it takes a long time to get going with internet marketing, there’s just so much to learn – like running any business, really.
Anyways, moving on!
When I first jumped into IM, I signed up with a website called Wealthy Affiliate after clicking on a banner ad and thinking “oh, this seems interesting.”. I then spent about 2-years subscribed to their premium level doing basically nothing with it, not taking advantage of what I had access to. I definitely learned a bit here and there, but I never really dug in and got serious, yet I thought I thought I was serious about actually making some money… Ha!
It’s pretty funny when I think about it now. But wow, I wasted a lot of time.
After a while I decided “hey, this isn’t really working” and almost gave up entirely. Then better judgment kicked in and I realized “maybe it’s just MY way that isn’t working.” I was a complete noob after all, a very stubborn noob.
A Fresh Start
So, I decided to start fresh, but this time actually following along with the training over at WA and doing things the right way… Instead of just going off and doing whatever. Maybe the fact that I had already been doing this stuff for a while at that point helped, but I’m serious when I say that site made a whopping $11 in its first month. Ok, so that might not even be enough to cover a month of hosting, but it was significantly more than I had made with niche sites up until that point. So, I was pretty inspired, to say the least.
I kept on the way I was going, continuing to learn everything I could from the training at Wealthy Affiliate, as well as from some smaller SEO gurus and the like. It must have been working because during the second month my example site made even more, 100% more! Yes, that’s an entire $22, now we’re talking!
Month 3 jumped to $147 and month 7 was just shy of $1400. Here’s what that year looks like via Amazon’s reports:
I know, you’re thinking “well, that’s not very much!”, and you’re kind of right in a way. But, it’s $3200 that I didn’t have in my pocket prior and you would be surprised at how much of a difference that can make!
Fast-forward another 3 months (to month 15), and that’s when this site finally broke that $5000 in a month milestone. $5430.77 if you want the exact amount. It was around this time when I decided that this whole internet marketing thing probably wasn’t a scam and that you probably could make some alright money when the proper strategy is implemented right.
Here’s what the past year (since Jan 2016) has looked like up until now. I’ve blocked out December 2016 for now as it’s only December 2nd as of writing this.
Again, I failed for two years trying to do things my way and I can confidently say that without some kind of training or mentorship, internet marketing is a very daunting process. The same month that I decided to actually take some advice and did things the right way, was the same month I saw my first bit of revenue.
There’s a lot that could be done to refine the earnings of this site, like working on increasing the conversion rate for one, and these are all things I’ll be tackling as we transition into 2017. For now, Amazon is no doubt happy about the $1.2-million+ in revenue that I’ve brought in since Jan 2016, and I’m definitely happy with the $40,000+ in residual income, half of which has come in the past 4-months. Once 2016 is done it should be more like $1.4-million in sales and $50k in commission, or thereabouts.
Just because I’m happy doesn’t mean I’ll become complacent, however, because that’s when you plateau and stop growing – which is definitely not what you want to do. From this point, I’ll continue scaling the traffic of my niche site and growing it on different social media platforms.
You could have a similar outcome, assuming you’re willing to learn a little bit about things like SEO, web design, writing content, as well as investing a crap load of your time and effort. No one said that internet marketing was easy, just that it’s possible 🙂
That’s all, just a bit of proof that it’s possible to make money in unconventional ways. Most people won’t even know what you’re talking about when you mention a niche site, but they’ve more than likely been on one.
When you feel like you’re about to fail is usually right around the same time that you’re going to succeed. Just something to keep in mind.
Do you have your own productive website? Thinking about starting one but don’t know where to begin? Let me know in the comments!