What I Have Learned in 6 Months of Affiliate Marketing
6 Months of Affiliate Marketing Blogging
At the end of 2019, I set a goal of building several streams of online income. I wanted to enter the digital nomad lifestyle and make money while traveling.
The best way to become a digital nomad is by earning an online income. The beauty of making money online is the freedom it gives you. You are your own boss, choose when and where you work and get to explore the world while doing so.
In my pursuit of online income, I have analyzed different techniques and strategies for making money online. Running an affiliate marketing blog has been my favorite method so far, and the highest paying.
This article will provide insights into what I've learned from Affiliate Marketing blogging over the last 6 months and everything I wish I knew when I started as an Affiliate Marketing blogger:
Choosing a Niche
6-Month Earnings Report
Growing an Email List
Make Excel Files
Why I Started Affiliate Marketing Blogging
Aside from my main goal of making money while traveling the world. Another major desire in starting an online business was not renting out my time.
When you rent out your time, your inputs and outputs are tied closely together. Your inputs are hours worked, and your outputs are the wages you receive as compensation. This means you can only make money when you are working. No chance of earning while you sleep or when you are on vacation.
Running an online business allows you to get a disconnect between your inputs and outputs. Set your business up so that it works for you while you aren't working. This is how longterm wealth is created.
I started Webbmozz knowing very little about how to make money online. I heard about affiliate marketing at a Robert Herjavic Entrepreneur event I attended in San Diego, 2019.
This sparked a deep interest in me, I studied marketing and finance at university but had no clue what I was going to do with it. After the event, I was hooked. Affiliate marketing gave me a side-project I could work on. I started doing some research, watched lots of Youtube Videos on Affiliate Marketing, then made a blog site on Wix.
Read about my first month running an Affiliate Marketing Blog.
Choosing a Niche
The next step was choosing a niche. I chose four topics that I was interested in in my daily life, these were Travel, Business, Finance, and Self-Improvement. From here I made a content plan for my blog posts and looked for relevant Affiliate links.
I found choosing a Niche a difficult process. It’s hard to know whether you are picking a niche that is too broad, too competitive, or too specific. To ease the process, I wrote out a long list of all my passions and interests which helped me to decide on the first 4 topics.
Over the course of 6 months, the website's niche has narrowed down into a more specific focus. It is now two categories; Travel and Business. With an overall mission of sharing our travel adventures and ways to make money while traveling.
Don’t let picking a niche become a big handbrake when starting an online business. Start broad, it will narrow itself down over time as you find out what truly interests you.
Early on in my Affiliate Marketing blogging journey, I heard that ’Content is Key’. For the best chance at success, you must create as much quality content on your website and social media channels as possible.
After 6 months of Affiliate Marketing, I still believe this is the most crucial factor in your online business succeeding or not.
For me, that meant writing and a lot of it. I needed to force myself to sit down and create. I knew that the more posts I could get out, the faster I could grow this website and reach my goal of making money while traveling.
Prior to beginning the site, I had minimal writing experience. I had begun journaling sporadically for personal benefit. Other than that, I didn’t really enjoy it and I definitely wasn’t good at it.
Over the past 6 months, writing has turned into one of my most loved passions. Now, I do not like going a day without writing something.
A new habit I have picked up is Morning Pages, I try to do these every morning and I find them extremely beneficial. It helps me to clarify my thoughts, expand on ideas, while truly expressing myself. Producing 3 pages of writing first thing in the morning also helps my motivation and productivity for the rest of the day.
So after 6 months, have I made money while traveling? Has my affiliate marketing blog paid off? Yes, it has.
After its first 6 months, the website has earned $660. These earnings were made while I worked my current full-time day job.
It took a few months before the website made any real money at all, but it has been a growing stream since month 4. I have put a lot of hours into building this site and there are many more to come.
6 Month Progress Report
Unique Users: 3428
Average Session Duration: 49 seconds
Google Clicks: 300
Keywords Ranking for: 630
Ever since starting the site, I have had a long-term mindset, aiming for income in the future. Making money online is hardly ever a get rich quick scheme. You have to be consistent and patient, but it is entirely possible to build income through an online business.
In six months I have received nearly 6 times that, and not spent any more money out of my own pocket, not a bad return on investment. I have also made a significant amount as a freelancer on Upwork and Fiverr.
Since receiving my first affiliate marketing payments I reinvested some of my earnings. I spent $90 to have the website redesigned and paid for $100 worth of content. I found quality freelancers to do the work for me at a great rate on Fiverr.
What I Wish I Knew When I Started Affiliate Marketing
Grow an Email List
Make Excel Files
Aside from writing, this has been the major focus for me in running an online business. SEO is the golden ticket to customers finding you online.
From the start, I had a focus on SEO, but have dived further into it over the past few months and it is starting to show some results.
For new websites, SEO is frustrating as the results don’t happen right away. It wasn’t till month 3 that I ranked for my first keyword, but I now rank for 630 keywords according to Ubersuggest. Give these a read if you want to learn more about SEO.
Grow an Email List
Over the past 6 months, I have built a subscriber list of 75 people without investing any time in gathering emails. I have not yet tried to drive my readers down a funnel to increase the chance they sign up. I have not yet sent out any emails to the subscribers.
I am only now learning the power of email marketing. I used to think it was annoying and spammy. Especially seeing big pop-ups fly into the middle of your screen, and you can’t exit until you give up your details. When in reality, it is an awesome resource for you to interact with your most loyal readers.
It’s also one of the best ways to drive free traffic to your website. Every time a new blog is posted you can notify all of your subscribers through email.
Every person on your mailing list has monetary value to your business. They may not be paying customers right away, but, every email you send them is a new chance to convert them into a sale. At some stage in the future, they will likely buy something from you or something you recommend.
I am in the process of upskilling in Email Marketing, I am working towards an online certification to help grow my business. I wish I had pursued email marketing earlier as I know how much it can boost an online business.
Build an email list as soon as you start an online business. Create a signup bar or pop-up on your website to encourage readers to join. GetResponse is a free tool that I use to get readers’ emails and manage my email list.
Make Excel Files
Make an excel file for all articles. This makes it super easy to find URL’s when you want to add links to your articles. It speeds up the social media marketing process a lot. On the file, add columns for SEO data like target keyword, current SERP rank.
I also have a file for all my affiliate marketing programs, it includes hop links, total earnings, payment schedules, and more. These files make the process of running an online business more efficient and help me to make money while traveling.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself for monetization early on. If you do, you are setting yourself up for failure. There are so many ways to make money online, you just need to remember to stay patient and consistent.
In your first 6 months as an affiliate marketing blogger, it is crucial to focus on creating lots of content and driving traffic. Trust that the money will come later.
Ensuring the quality of your content is the key to monetization in the future. Google and internet users do not reward unuseful, unthoughtful content so provide your readers with something of value.
For anyone starting an online business or blog, Wix is perfect for you. 6 months ago I created an affiliate marketing blog on Wix.
I am still really happy with their service, but, I have found that Wix websites are limited in their design capabilities. After a few months of a simple website, you may want something more elegant and advanced.
In month 4, I reinvested some of my earnings and paid $90 for a freelance Wix Designer on Fiverr. He redesigned the site and while I was happy with how it turned out, I still wanted it to look more modern and cutting-edge.
There are two ways around this. One way is to start with a WordPress site instead of Wix. WordPress offers far more flexibility when it comes to designing a website but I found it harder to use than Wix.
The second way is to learn how to code. Coding gives you the ultimate freedom to create a website or online business, and its a great skill for any digital nomad to have.
For the next 6 months of my Affiliate Marketing blogging journey, I will keep a major focus on publishing content. Content is key if I intend to further establish this website's authority and grow its organic search traffic.
I also plan on doing a large marketing push to reach 25,000 viewers in one month. This will allow me to join MediaVine which is a great way to monetize your online business.
SEO and Email Marketing are two other key focus points for me over the next 6 months. I believe these are two of the best ways to help me build a long term passive income and make money while traveling.