This online business model really is so simple that anyone can do it and I think everyone should when they are starting out online. I didn't say it was easy - I said it was simple 🙂
Affiliate sites - Why should it be your first online business model?
Simply because it will teach you everything you need to know as you add other online opportunities to it.
It will teach you:
- How to set up a web site - domains, hosting, making simple changes, how to manipulate graphics and more. By the time you've set up your first affiliate site you'll know more than 95% of your friends, family and business associates. If you decide to market your services to local businesses you'll be confident and ready to provide that very lucrative service.
- What niches are popular - both online and offline. It's amazing the marketing knowledge and psychological triggers you'll learn about people and why, when and how they make purchases.
- How to rank in the search engines - no matter what you decided to do in the future and what other businesses you start or services you want to provide, getting those valuable page 1 search results is the key to traffic and being found online. 'Build it and they will come' just does not work if people can't find you. If you're not on page one for your search terms you won't be found.
- How to build buying traffic - this one goes along with #3 but there are hundreds of other opportunities to drive people to your web site. You don't want just any visitors though, you want buyers. It's much better to have 20 visitors to your site a day that want your product and convert at 25% (4 buyers) than to have 1000 visitors a day that only convert at .1% (1 buyer) or possibly even less.
When I talk to people about affiliate sites and begin to discuss the steps involved I often get blank stares and "that sounds like a lot of work". It does seem like a lot of work and a huge learning curve - however, the payoff is huge also. Yes, it may take you 40 hours to set up your first site and it may only make you $2 or $3 a day. However, that's $2 to $3 a day you didn't have before and it keeps going that way without any additional effort on your part. Plus, you've mastered knowledge and skills that will enable you to build the next one in 20 hours and make $5 to $6 a day.
Before long you're making two to 3 sites at a time and have 20-30 making $5 to $10 a day - each and every day of the year, or even better - begin to outsource the entire process while you move on to your next project.
What would the next project look like? Might I suggest using the valuable skills that you've mastered to help local businesses build a valuable online customer magnet and market their own services.
Start with niche affiliate sites though - if you make a mistake on your own $5 per day site it's not going to be a big problem to fix. Make a mistake on a $5000 offline client contract that you've negotiated and it's going to be much more painful both to your bottom line and to your reputation in the community.