As a full-time affiliate marketer this is something that has been on my mind for many months and after a lot of testing with 41 websites and perseverance I have finally worked out that those one page affiliate websites or just websites that have been built to promote one product are slowly going to fade away.
Yes you heard me right if you are one of these affiliates your days are definitely numbered.
You Need To Evolve Or You Will Perish
If you are starting out you need to read this post and take it on board as it will be your online bible into the future and if you have been around for a while and have a few sites then you need to read this now and act…
It is going to take more than just one or two websites for you to quit your day job and if you aren’t prepared you should consider your life to be destined in the 9 to 5 rat race.
Check out our post on The Future of Affiliate Marketing
There isn’t going to be some new technology released that is going to change marketing as we know it that type of technology is already here.
But what is going to change is the way you market your websites and yourself (you will notice how I said websites) the days of only having one website and using that to market to the masses are coming to and end whether you have a keyword specific domain name or not it is time to start looking at the bigger picture and adjusting your strategy to meet this new challenge.
Over the past 12 months I have been testing out different ways of promoting my money sites and here is what I have realized…
When I first started out as an affiliate marketer I would check out Clickbank and then find a product I wanted to promote then register a keyword rich domain name and then build links to the site usually reciprocal and that did work and I was making a decent living online. In actual fact it just seemed to easy to do this and all without pay-per-click marketing as well.
Yes I do know SEO and yes I do use it in every piece of sales copy that I write, however that is no longer enough. Every new site I created seemed to do just a little less than the previous site and even with keyword research and aged PR links pointing to the site it was getting harder and harder to get the rankings I need without using pay-per-click. When I talk about rankings i am talking on average a top 10 in Google™ for every money page I built.
I then changed tack slightly and started to use more pages on my money sites and writing articles and to point one way links back to the site as well as reciprocal links and this seemed to work fine in lifting my rankings but even this seemed to fade away very fast unless I kept writing articles and updating the content which can be very time-consuming.
I then decided that I need to add a blog to my static HTML site that would allow my users to add content for me and this also worked fine but as the fad also moved away from the software or service I was promoting so did the user comments and my free site updates.
How To Evolve Without Having To Start Over
Take a look at the domains you already own remembering that older is better when it comes to domain names then see if any of those domain names are brand-able and I will use this site as an example AffiliateXFiles this was not my site originally it was used to market an e-book affiliate program for close on two years it is known on the internet already and trusted. I was lucky enough to notice that it had expired and had the know how to acquire this before anyone else could.
Why would I do this firstly I believe it to be a brand-able domain name secondly it is already know in both affiliate and internet marketing circles and my site is about affiliate marketing. Secondly there were hundreds of forum and blog posts that were still actively pointing to the domain name so I had a ready-made site.
Okay so once you find from your existing domain names something that is brand-able and will work you will start from there, what I will say however is do not delete your existing sites and I will get back to that later.
The very next thing I will do is find all the relevant or what Google considers relevant to my topic and I do this by going to Google Search™ and in the search box I type this (~affiliate marketing) it will bring up in the title of the pages everything that Google considers relevant to affiliate marketing I now have my topics for the site.
When you do this you will see that there is not only affiliate marketing but Pay Per Click, Affiliate, Pay Per Click Marketing, Associate Marketing and Link Marketing which are now all categories of this site.
And to give me even more relevant topics to write about I use another tool that is free from Google called the Wonder Wheel which will dig down even deeper into Google to tell you what other sites are linking to from this search term.
Update 2011: (The Google Wonder Wheel is no longer available as a search option)
I think you are starting to get the picture that small websites are something of the past and if you start building these bigger more information packed websites you are going to be around for years to come. Using this site with the theme of affiliate marketing I have a platform to launch any campaign that is related to marketing products online web promotion, software or services.
I have users commenting on numerous posts across the site giving me new content daily so if I wanted to go on holidays I can just log in daily approve the comments and my site is being updated for me and all for free.
So What Are The Tools To Use To Create These Sites
I personally use WordPress blogs for all my sites now firstly for ease of use and the popularity with the search engines. However there are a few other things you need to consider when building these sites you need to have unique content to post to your blogs this is essential if you want to be an authority site in the market place.
As well as that you need a strategy for link building and I will say forget about reciprocal link building unless you have a very relevant and good PR site to do it with. The link building I am speaking about is one way links which are created by writing high quality articles for my site and also for doing guest posts on other blogs and websites that have a good standing.
No, this is not paid links in any form, this is simply writing a relevant quality article that benefits the website and its users where I receive a link back to my blog for my efforts, this is totally white hat.
You Need To Diversify For Success
You need to have a minimum of 6 of these sites which I believe you can handle on your own for starters so that you can effectively market many different products across a diverse range of niches so for each new site find a brand-able domain name and build a site that can be leveraged into not just one part of say the health industry but every part of the health industry from fitness to nutrition and weight loss, woman’s issues and so on.
You need to be building a solid network of sites that will carry you through for the years to come and as an example of this and how it works I also have a computer security site that is four years old and it has many pages and promotes a wide range of computer security and repair software.
For the first two years it was a real struggle to get it off the ground but once I added the next 80 or so pages I started to notice something very strange and that was product vendors approaching me to promote their products on this site.
And when I say promote their products I was being offered 100% commission for the first 25 sales plus bonuses this is the difference between having an alright site to a super information packed authority site.
If you have any questions about affiliate marketing you can visit our post called Ask Your Affiliate Marketing Questions.