my journey by islamstar90

VIEWS: 5 PAGES: 10

									         My Journey Through the Wonderful World of
                   Passive Online Profits


                                                      Table of Contents
1 About Me...........................................................................................................................................2
2 About This Report............................................................................................................................. 2
3 Your Own Website.............................................................................................................................3
4 Affiliate Marketing............................................................................................................................4
   4.1 Rosalind Gardner's “Super Affiliate Handbook”.......................................................................4
   4.2 Clickbank...................................................................................................................................4
      4.2.1 Clickbank Dormancy Fees and Harvey Segal's “Clickbank for Newbies”........................4
      4.2.2 Clickbank Email Notification of Sales for Affiliates.........................................................5
   4.3 Other Affiliate Websites.............................................................................................................6
5 Google Adsense.................................................................................................................................7
   5.1 Adsense $100k Blueprint...........................................................................................................7
   5.2 Adsense Revenue-sharing Sites: Hubpages and Webanswers................................................... 8
6 Keyword Research & Traffic Generation..........................................................................................9
   6.1 Market Samurai - Free Videos................................................................................................... 9
   6.2 The Challenge - Free Videos......................................................................................................9
7 Warrior Forum................................................................................................................................. 10
8 What I've Learned............................................................................................................................10
Hi!

First of all, thank you for taking the time to read this report.



1 About Me

I've been dabbling in the world of Internet Marketing for five months now.

I was a typical computer programmer. I discovered the joy of programming at a very young age. I
never paid much attention to any ads, offline or online, or any form of financial management,
beyond “it pays the bills”. Tell me what software you need written, or which program bugs you
need to get fixed, and I'd get it swiftly done. Running businesses? Marketing? Advertising?
Managing my own finances? I was completely oblivious to all of that, and did not care much for
them.

My turning point came when I decided that I enjoyed programming as a hobby but not as work with
stressful deadlines and my clients' ever-changing demands. Indeed, my work was killing the passion
I had for programming. In addition, I felt that there had to be some way to earn money online,
working from home, instead of slogging away everyday in an office cubicle. Thus began my
journey through the online world in search of possible passive profits.



2 About This Report

In my initial stages of learning, I suffered from information overload. Without a mentor, it was truly
a challenge to sift through all the “work-at-home” and “get-rich-quick” schemes proliferating the
Internet.

I wrote this report to share some of the most useful products and websites that I've discovered,
based on my own experiences as a young and hopeful 20-something, completely oblivious (at the
time) to the world of both offline and online advertising and marketing. I believe that these are
some of the most informational and inspirational products available currently, and I hope by sharing
these, other complete beginners can choose one technique that they're most comfortable with and
focus on it immediately, instead of dallying around wondering which technique is “the best” and
end up learning and learning but never taking action.

I have not made millions. Not even thousands. In my first three months, I barely made anything.
But I have finally seen some bit of success in the past couple of months, which I hope to expand on,
and hopefully my experiences will inspire some of the beginners who have yet to earn anything.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this report are affiliate links, meaning I will earn a commission if
you purchase a product through the link, but they do not in any way affect the contents of this
report, nor do they affect the price of the products you purchase.

You are welcome to distribute this report, provided the content (including all the links) remains
intact and unchanged in its entirety.
3 Your Own Website

To earn online successfully, you will typically need to have your own website. You could potentially
sign up for a free blog at one of numerous free blog sites such as blogger.com, but you would then
be limited under their terms and conditions, which might well prohibit some forms of marketing.

With your own website, you are pretty much free to do whatever you want with it. Getting your
own website involves three steps:

    Deciding what your domain name should be (e.g. http://www.thisismydomain.com).
     While you can change your domain name later on, it involves a bit of hassle, so spend some
     time deciding on the best domain name for your site. It's best if your domain name contains
     only letters which make up the entire main keyword that the site is about. If the domain is
     not available, you can try adding prefixes such as “the”, “about”, or suffixes such as “site”,
     “info”, “review” to your desired name. You can also insert hyphens in between words (e.g.
     “this-is-mydomain.com”), but it is typically advised that you refrain from using more than 2
     hyphens, as it may have negative effects with search engines.

    Purchasing your domain name with a domain name registrar such as Namecheap or
     godaddy. I personally use both at the moment for various sites. This can range from just $2
     to $10 per year. There is some debate whether or not domain name extensions (e.g. “.com”,
     “.org”, “.info”) matter, but the general consensus is that they do. Even if search engines do
     NOT take them into consideration when ranking sites, people are naturally accustomed to
     trust “.com” sites more and are more inclined to visit such sites when they see them in the
     search engine listings. For this reason, “.com”, “.net” and “.org” domain name extensions
     are typically preferred over others such as “.info” and “.biz”.

    Purchasing a web hosting service. Domain name registrars typically offer web hosting
     services as well, but it is commonly advised that you should separate your domain name
     registrar from your web hosting service. This prevents a single entity from “owning” your
     site and potentially causing issues down the road (e.g. making it difficult for you to switch
     hosts if you decide there's a need). A typical web hosting can be as low as $3 a month, or
     upwards of $15 a month. The main difference is typically your bandwidth: the more
     expensive plans usually offer higher, more reliable bandwidth, meaning that if your site gets
     a sudden influx of visitors, it will not crash under the load. Nowadays, one of the most
     popular hosting services is Hostgator. I personally use it, and can recommend it. It offers
     reliable service, with great customer support as well.

One of the most common content management systems used by marketers today is WordPress.
Once you have your own website, you can easily install WordPress with a few clicks of the mouse
button if your web host uses the cpanel interface (which Hostgator does). Becoming familiar with
WordPress, or whichever content management system or blogging platform you decide to use, is an
important step in building up your own website.

If you're new to WordPress, you might be confused by the terms “WordPress.com” and “self-hosted
WordPress”. WordPress.com is essentially a free blogging platform, much like blogger.com. On the
other hand, “self-hosted WordPress” refers to the content management system software that you can
download to install on your own website. If your web host does not feature a cpanel interface, you
can download the software from the website WordPress.org. Otherwise, you should not need to deal
with either WordPress.com or WordPress.org, but should understand the differences anyway when
you hear people discussing them. I've written a more verbose explanation in a Hubpages article
titled “Understanding WordPress.com vs WordPress.org”.



4 Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing was a term I frequently came across in my initial foray into the online working
world. I read many reports, both free and paid, on affiliate marketing. It sounded great; you get paid
a commission, sometimes as high as 75% of the product price, simply for promoting other people's
products (usually through a link)! It sounded like an amazing source of passive income, and it is.


       4.1     Rosalind Gardner's “Super Affiliate Handbook”

       I highly recommend Rosalind Gardner's “Super Affiliate Handbook” as a starting point for
       any affiliate marketer. At a whopping 200+ pages, it contains a wealth of information you
       need to know about affiliate marketing as a complete beginner. Even the sales page of the
       book alone contains useful information on affiliate marketing. Although the price of the
       book might seem a bit steep, I've found it to be one of the best investments in my internet
       marketing journey.

       It's worth noting that many of the ideas stated in the handbook were written in 2002, yet
       remain true today. There's no denying that some of the statements in the book are a little
       outdated (Rosalind does update the book from time to time, but technology moves quickly!
       In 2002, Google was not quite the behemoth it is today), but the basic facts it presents are
       still highly pertinent nearly a decade later, thanks to Rosalind's insistence on “white-hat” or
       ethical marketing techniques, which I strongly believe in as well. You can learn much by
       reading the book and understanding just how much effort affiliate marketing takes, both in
       the past and in the present. I personally found the book to be truly inspiring. It was not the
       first book I'd read on affiliate marketing, but I would say it was the most illuminating.


       4.2     Clickbank

       One of the most popular affiliate companies is Clickbank. It offers digital products (i.e.
       ebooks), with a guaranteed 60-day money-back guarantee. If you have your own digital
       product to sell, you can sign up as a vendor and put it up on Clickbank. Affiliate marketers
       will then pick it up for promotion on their own websites or other places such as email and
       social network sites (provided you have an actual useful product with a convincing sales
       page).


              4.2.1 Clickbank Dormancy Fees and Harvey Segal's
                    “Clickbank for Newbies”

               You can sign up with Clickbank either as a vendor (you only sell products) or an
               affiliate (you only promote other's products), or both. Affiliates with Clickbank can
               earn commissions as high as 75% of the product price. All of this sounds great, with
               one small caveat. As with many other online payment systems, you need to reach a
               minimum threshold (usually $100) in your account before Clickbank will pay you by
check. You could be excited after your first successful commission of, for example,
$30 in your Clickbank account. However, you can actually lose this entire $30 (you
could lose it if the customer wants a refund, but that's a different scenario) through
“dormancy fees” charged by Clickbank. Under the “Dormant Accounts” section in
Clickbank's “Accounting Policy” page, the following is stated:

         "Accounts with a positive balance but no earnings for an extended period of
         time are considered dormant. Dormant accounts are subject to a charge of $1
         per pay period after 90 days of no earnings, $5 per pay period after 180 days
         of no earnings, and $50 per pay period after 365 days of no earnings.”

As a beginner affiliate, earning your first commission usually involves a bit of hard
work and a little luck. Your next commissions might not occur for months after that,
which might make you feel jaded when you lose your entire first commission
because you did not manage to sell anything after that. For this reason, if you're just
starting out with Clickbank, I recommend having a look at Harvey Segal's free report
“Clickbank for Newbies (...and oldies...)” on how to ensure this does not happen to
you. It also offers other general information on Clickbank (e.g. how to select a
product to promote, sales leaks, link cloaking). I can personally say that it works, and
is most definitely at least worth the free read.


4.2.2 Clickbank Email Notification of Sales for Affiliates

If you are a new Clickbank affiliate, you might not be aware that Clickbank does
NOT email you when you successfully make a sale. Only vendors will get that
privilege. In the past, Clickbank did use to notify affiliates of sales, but they decided
to terminate that service, possibly due to their growth in popularity and bandwidth
concerns. There is, however, a way to get Clickbank to notify you via email, if you
have your own website. It can be inspirational to open your email inbox to receive
such notifications when you're a new Clickbank affiliate, instead of having to
obsessively check your Clickbank account daily. You can easily disable the
notification after the novelty wears off. Follow the following steps to get Clickbank
to notify your website whenever an affiliate sale or refund is made. Your website will
in turn email you, based on the provided script.

    1.    Decide on a secret key (up to 16 digits and letters only in ALL CAPS
          ONLY).
    2.    Copy the PHP script in the box below to Notepad or some other text editor.
    3.    In the PHP script, change the field
          “ENTER_YOUR_SECRET_KEY_HERE” to your chosen secret key (make
          sure the quotation marks remain).
    4.    In the PHP script, change the field “ENTER_YOUR_EMAIL_HERE” to the
          email address where you wish to receive notifications (make sure the
          quotation marks remain).
    5.    Save your edited PHP script to a local file ending with a “.php” extension.
          e.g. “cb_mail.php”.
    6.    Navigate to your website's control panel (or FTP program) where you can
          upload your PHP file. Upload it to the root domain of your site. (e.g.
          http://your-website-here.com/cb_mail.php)
    7.    Log in to your Clickbank account.
    8.    Click on the “Account Settings” tab at the top bar, and click on “My Site”.
           9. In the box labelled “Advanced Tools”, click the “Edit” link.
           10. You need to request access to the instant notification feature. Read through
               the necessary details if you want, then click Save.
           11. In the text field labelled “Secret Key”, key in your secret key.
           12. In the text field labelled “Instant Notification URL 1”, key in the full
               website address of the file you'd uploaded earlier. e.g. http://your-website-
               here.com/cb_mail.php
           13. This script works with Clickbank Instant Notification version 2.1. Choose
               that version.
           14. Click the “Save changes” button, go back to the Edit screen and click “test”.
           15. Check your email for the test email. Be sure to check your spam folder.
           16. If you do not receive the test email, review the above steps: check your
               secret keys to make sure they match in steps 3 and step 11, check that you
               correctly keyed in your email address in step 4, check that the URL address
               you keyed in in step 12 is correct, and try again.
           17. If you decide you no longer want the email notifications, simply clear the
               “Instant Notification URL 1” text field and save your settings in your
               Clickbank account.

       PHP script (cb_mail.php):

       <?php

       function cbValid() {
           $secretKey="ENTER_YOUR_SECRET_KEY_HERE";
           $pop = "";
           $ipnFields = array();
           foreach ($_POST as $key => $value) {
               if ($key == "cverify") {
                   continue;
               }
               $ipnFields[] = $key;
           }
           sort($ipnFields);
           foreach ($ipnFields as $field) {
               $pop = $pop . $_POST[$field] . "|";
           }
           $pop = $pop . $secretKey;
           $calcedVerify = sha1(mb_convert_encoding($pop, "UTF-8"));
           $calcedVerify = strtoupper(substr($calcedVerify,0,8));
           return $calcedVerify == $_POST["cverify"];
       }

       if (cbValid())
       mail("ENTER_YOUR_EMAIL_HERE", "ClickBank - " .
       $_REQUEST['ctransaction'],"Product: " . $_REQUEST['cprodtitle'] .
       "\nPublisher: " . $_REQUEST['ctranspublisher'] . "\nAffiliate: " .
       $_REQUEST['ctransaffiliate'] . "\nTransaction: " .
       $_REQUEST['ctransaction'] . "\nAmount: " .
       $_REQUEST['caccountamount']);
       ?>




4.3    Other Affiliate Websites

While Clickbank is the leading company for marketing digital products, Commission
       Junction and Amazon are highly popular for affiliate marketing of physical products.

       Before you sign up with any affiliate company, make sure you read their terms and
       conditions, understand them, and do not abuse them unintentionally. The text may be
       overwhelming, and many people typically skip through such legalese when signing up
       online, but it is necessary to comprehend and review, especially when you're trying out some
       new marketing techniques for promoting affiliate products.

       There have been instances of Amazon affiliates (or “Amazon associates”, the term preferred
       by Amazon) having their accounts closed thanks to them trying out rather creative marketing
       technique involving frames, which was against the Amazon “Operator Agreement”. Be on
       the lookout for any unexpected caveats as well, such as the Clickbank Dormancy Fees
       mentioned above.



5 Google Adsense

Apart from affiliate marketing, Google's advertising network can be a viable online passive income
source. For the uninitiated, Google Adsense is an advertising platform where Google will pay
publishers (who can sign up for the program for free) for placing ads on their websites. Google
Adwords is the sister of this program, whereby advertisers pay Google to have their ads displayed
by Google. In short, advertisers sign up for the Adwords program and pay Google a certain amount
whenever someone clicks on their ads. Publishers sign up for the Adsense program and receive a
commission from Google whenever someone clicks on the ads they display on their sites.

It is actually possible to earn a stable income through Adsense alone. Like affiliate marketing
through your own websites, you will need to choose a particular niche to focus on for your website
(that way, Google's contextual ads will be relevant and visitors will be more likely to click on your
ads), and drive traffic to your site, typically through search engine optimization (SEO) techniques.


       5.1     Adsense $100k Blueprint

       One of the best Adsense products I've come across and have personally had some success
       with (well, actually, to date I've had the most success with this product than any other online
       marketing product!) is the Adsense $100k Blueprint. It comes with a detailed .pdf file; the
       first half outlines the important aspects of keyword research and what keywords you should
       be focusing on, as well as how to layout your content. The second half details the step-by-
       step plan you should follow to be able to rank high in search engines and drive natural traffic
       to your site. The product also comes with complete proven WordPress templates where you
       can just plug in your Adsense publisher id and your own necessary pages.

       If you're unfamiliar with Adsense, you should know that Google is very strict with potential
       spammers and abusers of the system, and is very quick to dispense a lifetime ban on
       accounts. This is why it is important to ensure that any websites you implement Adsense on
       does not go against Google's terms and conditions, and this is why I find the Adsense $100k
       Blueprint a great product: it does not promote anything shady which Google could have a
       problem with in the forseeable future.

       If you do decide to follow and implement the blueprint, I highly suggest you first sign up for
the forum, at least for your first month (the forum has a monthly recurring billing but the
product itself is a one-time payment), as it contains more details and offers you might
otherwise miss out on. For instance, if you are familiar with WordPress, you might have an
idea of what WordPress “pages” versus “posts” are and how they should be laid out, but the
blueprint actually suggests a fairly unique layout which you could miss out on if you'd just
skimmed through that particular section. It is explained with further clarity in the forums.
You can clear any other doubts you have by posting on the forum.

A note: Just as with most other legitimate sources of online money-making, this is not a get-
rich-quick scheme. It involves genuine effort, at least in the initial stages. After that initial
stage, though, you can mostly sit back and reap the benefits. Do not give up too quickly!


5.2    Adsense Revenue-sharing Sites: Hubpages and Webanswers

Instead of plopping Adsense ads on your own website, you can also participate in Adsense
revenue-sharing sites such as Hubpages and Webanswers. Such websites will display ads on
the content pages you submit to the site, and you will earn a portion of the ad revenue
(typically 60%) while the site keeps the rest. It is typically easier to rank such websites in
the search engines, as they are older and more established compared to a brand new website.

Out of all the Adsense revenue-sharing sites available, however, I personally prefer
Webanswers. This is a Question and Answer site, similar to Yahoo! Answers, but with an
Adsense revenue-sharing component. There is an undisclosed “quality score” attached to
your account, which you want to be as high as possible. It takes into account the length of
your posts (answers should typically be at least 3 sentences long), grammatical structure as
well as spelling.

The unique thing about Webanswers, compared to other revenue-sharing sites, is that it will
display ads on the entire site on your behalf, not just on the pages you participated in (i.e.
your posted questions or answers). This means that as a new user, without having to perform
any promotion of your pages at all (which you would have to do on sites such as Hubpages),
you can immediately start earning within a day of participation (provided you already have
an Adsense account!). I personally earned $0.42 on my first day there.

The earnings are admittedly not particularly high: potentially less than $100 a month if
you're not very active (though top earners have reported earnings of $700 monthly; see this
page for a sampling of daily earnings across users on the site), but it counts towards your
Adsense account, and could inch you ever closer to your first Adsense payout (you need a
minimum of $100 in your account before your first payout). Having your earnings locked in
Adsense or elsewhere for a long time can be a psychological barrier to your progress in
earning money online. I've found that to be a motivating factor for participating on
Webanswers. In addition, I actually enjoy answering the questions on the site, and see the
earnings as a bonus.

The number of ads displayed around the site depends on your activity level; when your
activity drops, so too will the number of ads displayed and consequently your earnings.
However, in addition to this active income, you do have a chance at earning passive income
as well. To maximize this passive income, you will want to post in categories where the ads
are high-paying (e.g. health-related or financial/tax-related categories), and where the
questions are typically what a user would naturally put in as a query in search engines, or
questions which contain highly searchable keywords. For every “awarded answer” you get,
       you will receive 60% of the revenue of the ads on that page. You can promote all your
       “awarded answer” pages, just like you would a Hubpages article or even your own website,
       to drive traffic to them and possibly raise their rankings in search engine listings. Do it right,
       and you will have successfully established a source of passive income stream.



6 Keyword Research & Traffic Generation

Whether you choose to monetize your site with affiliate marketing, Google Adsense, or other
methods such as pleas for donations, Chitika ads, selling your own products, etc., keyword research
and traffic generation are two common and critical aspects to building your own successful passive
money-making site. There are many traffic generation tools which are covered in the “Adsense
$100k Blueprint” mentioned previously, which I have not listed here. I do recommend having a
look at it if you're new to traffic generation and search engine optimization.


      6.1     Market Samurai - Free Videos

       Google Adwords keyword tool is great for keyword research, and I've actually found it to be
       pretty sufficient for my own needs. However, Market Samurai (you can signup for a free 12
       day trial) offers many impressive features, in addition to their keyword research tool (which
       itself is derived from Google Adwords keyword tool, but offers more useful advanced
       filtering options). This includes a monetization module where you can easily search for
       affiliate programs based on a keyword.

       If nothing else, the 100% free videos accompanying Market Samurai (click on the “Dojo”
       tab at the top of the main page, then on “Market Samurai” to access these videos; you don't
       even need to signup to view them!) are well worth a look. In particular, check out all the
       videos listed under “Keyword Research” and “SEO Competition”. They contain great and
       extremely useful information for beginners. I would highly recommend you check out those
       videos, even if you do not wish to use the product itself.


       6.2    The Challenge - Free Videos

       A website which I personally found to be a goldmine of information – and completely free –
       is The Challenge website, fronted by Ed Dale. Initially, it was called “The 30-Day
       Challenge”, wherein members were challenged to create their own niche websites and earn
       their first income online by following the information in the free videos, without any initial
       investment apart from perhaps web hosting.

       Over the years, the challenge has evolved, and is no longer limited to just 30 days (burnout
       was common when so much information was packed in just 30 days). All the videos are
       completely free, and will take you step by step from keyword research, to setting up your
       own website, to driving natural search engine traffic to your site through an offpage-
       network, to monetization of your site. If you do not enjoy reading wordy books like
       Rosalind Gardner's “Super Affiliate Handbook” (and even this report; I realize I like to
       ramble on and I apologize), and prefer seeing videos instead, then you'll definitely enjoy
       “The Challenge”! As the tagline of the site says, “there is no charge for awesomeness”.
7 Warrior Forum

Saving the best for last: this forum deserves its very own section. If you haven't done so already, go
take a look at Warrior Forum; lurk around for a while if you must. When you're ready, cough up the
small investment required to access the “War Room” in the forum. The Warrior Forum is the best
forum on internet marketing that I've come across, and its private War Room will most definitely be
one of the best investments you've paid for your online money-making business. The amount of
helpful (many of them free!) information in there is simply outstanding. Just do your due diligence
(the forum is after all accessible to everyone, including not-so-ethical marketers); the community
usually weeds out the bad apples quickly. If you want honest, updated reviews of Internet marketing
products, this is the place to go.



8 What I've Learned

From my venture into Internet Marketing, I have learned the critical importance of having multiple
revenues of passive income streams. I have also become more savvy at managing and planning my
own finances as well as running my own businesses. All these are, in my opinion, priceless bits of
information I might never have had a chance of truly delving into if I had just remained stuck in my
comfort zone as a programmer.

Now, I believe my main mistake in the beginning was to focus on too many things at once. I would
try out one product, get impatient halfway after not seeing results, then jump to the next product.
Happily and luckily enough, I actually saw some success in nearly all of those things I explored
eventually, but at a much slower pace than if I had focused on just one at a time. I would strongly
advise any beginners to simply decide and focus on a single marketing technique at a time. If you
see success, run with that.

What I've shared in this report are the products and websites which I've found to be the most helpful
and what has actually worked in my journey through the online world of passive money-making. I
hope they will be inspirational and helpful to other beginners. This is more than enough information
to get started on your first passive money-making website. All of the information and products I've
shared here are ethical (or I believe it to be), meaning I can sleep soundly at night! If you're a
beginner, do beware of scams and less-than-ethical money-making schemes, which might even
work in the short term but will eventually crumble in the long run.

Do not fall into the trap of endlessly reading books, watching videos or even participating in forums
to get more information and never taking action, or worse, spending all your time researching
whether that next big product is legitimate or a scam, or is completely unethical! Hint: if it sounds
too good to be true, and if the sales page barely mentions anything about what the product does or
how it works, and instead focuses on the cushiony lifestyle the product creators are enjoying, run
far, far away.

If you don't do anything, then you won't earn anything. That much is guaranteed. There is a vast
amount of information out there, and there comes a point when you simply have to say “OK that's
enough; it's time to take action”. Once you decide to take action, unsubscribe from any mailing lists
which could distract you with endless product offers, and simply focus.

You WILL get there if you put in the effort and do not give up too soon.

								
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