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[MOTIVATION] How I made pennies in 2015

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by Eeter, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. Eeter

    Eeter Registered Member

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    This post will not be impressive. This report won't make your eyes glow with envy. These earnings won't tickle your private areas. None of that. You've been warned.

    This post is, however, feedback and hopefully some motivation for new comers here. If you're new, or you're starting to feel like what you're doing is going nowhere, this might be for you. Here it goes.


    The start

    I joined BHW a while ago. I spent a lot of time reading, lurking and not participating. I learned a lot, but as most of you know reading isn't even 5% of the battle. Gotta get into it, get your hands dirty and start something. Anything.

    About 3 years ago I picked a niche (electronics, won't go into specifics), picked a free Wordpress template, a domain, hosting and off I went.

    I created a 25 pages website that reviews about 10 products from the niche I had picked. I wrote articles between 500 and 1000 words long, added pictures, added links, added call to actions and directed it all towards my Amazon affiliate account.

    All in all I think I was done with the creation part of the website in a bit less than 3 days. It was my first WP site so I had to learn, and I had to write content about a niche I knew nothing about.


    Maintenance

    For a few weeks I was very excited. I logged onto my site every day, tried to improve stuff, change copywriting, add words, add pictures, etc. I was also very worried that my links were dead, so I tested them all about 10 times each to make sure they directed to the right product with the cookies.

    I also started "promoting" my pages. I setup Google Alerts that related to my niche, and each product I promoted. Whenever I got a decent article dropped in my inbox, I would try to reply with a helpful comment and a backlink to my site (took about 3 minutes every other day). I created aliases on disqus and yahoo. I also wrote 5 articles related to the niche and posted them on article sites like ezinarticles and others.

    In these few weeks I maybe created 10 backlinks on the web, in total. Nothing worth anything really. It was mainly groundwork, something people would do in 2 days just to be sure they have a few links before starting real promotion.

    I didn't create a facebook page. I didn't create a twitter page. I didn't do any social bookmarking (stumbleupon, digg, etc.).


    Giving up

    After a while I got bored. The niche didn't interest me at all, and results weren't showing. I completely put the site aside and worked on other stuff. Past from these 25 on-site pages and ~10 backlinks, I never created anything since.

    I also moved away from Amazon because it really wasn't bringing any significant results. I started a real life business, had other things to worry about, so I left it all untouched and running in the back ground.


    Finding my logins

    A couple months ago I thought about the site. I went on, logged in, and everything was still the same (obviously). I decided to add it to my Google Analytics page again, and check amazon. I had made some money, nothing impressive at all, but it did make money.

    In January I decided to have a look at the year of 2015 and how my site fared earning wise. As you'll see below, it didn't make much.

    6bab5de8fb5cea97b7c68a03db1cf379.png

    Here's the interesting part though. I have not worked on this site for 2 years. Setting it up took me about a week, because I didn't know anything and I didn't have any money to outsource. These $160 or so are essentially free money getting to me after spending a few hours working on something and never optimizing. A 5.10% conversion rate is actually pretty good all things considered!

    Think of how much I could have made had I continued the work?

    Think of how much I could have made had I made more links?

    Think of how much I could have made had I had more traffic?

    Think of how much I could have made had I written more articles?

    Think of how much I could have made had I started 3 more sites like this? Or 5? Or 10? Or 50?


    The point of all this

    I warned you that the earnings wouldn't be impressive, and that wasn't the point of my post.

    The point of all this is to show you that even though work might not pay off right away, it will at some point. Although you may think you're wasting your time, or that "5 articles are enough for now", or that "these few links will be enough", continue the work. Get to know your process, see yourself gradually become better and better at it while you create more opportunities for yourself.

    Own what you're doing, and keep the motivation high. People telling you you can't do it is hard to hear, but giving up on yourself is a deadly mistake. Do the work.
     
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  2. xlcrash

    xlcrash Senior Member

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    Agree with everything...
     
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  3. Natty

    Natty Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Brilliant post, profoundly inspirational!
     
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  4. Eternal1912

    Eternal1912 Power Member

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    This can be motivational for newbies OP :) I will start making amazon websites soon too
     
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  5. citizenmuj

    citizenmuj Registered Member

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    Thats great earning, considering the fact that you didn't do anything. ;) Great post
     
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  6. asap1

    asap1 BANNED BANNED

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    I could have been making a lot more then I am now but I got lazy.

    Don't get lazy. You wil regret it at some point when you realized what the hell you are doing.
     
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  7. AdamKaan

    AdamKaan Newbie

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    Hi, did you have previous technical experience of building websites and seo etc? I find it hard to understand how people manage to be newbies and do all the stuff you did in 3 days. I've been busting my guts off since October 2015, and haven't managed to do as much, I've averaged about 35+ hours a week on learning and implementing. I was a complete noob when I started and I still believe I am to some extent. I haven't made any money yet. I've made 3 websites, and social media profiles for them , some social bookmarking but no back linking yet. I'm a single parent with a part time job (that's why I'm doing this, it's hard to find more work to fit around the kids and domestics) so I can't afford all the software that most people use there seems to be a never ending list of them, for SEO, social media so on and so forth
     
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  8. Jaymien

    Jaymien Regular Member

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    That's basically what happened to me with Instagram. I was really sad 3 years ago for losing my main page (was a pretty big one at the time), and it was my main source of income, had so many plans and ideas, and I lost everything at the peak.. I was so unprepared and it was so unexpected that it destroyed all my motivation.

    I was so mad that I decided to quit everything, moved away and focused on everyday's life. (Yes, I don't really take losing well..)

    Two months ago I just wanted to check how the things were going with my other old accounts on Instagram and I found out that they had an overall growth of almost 80k followers.. while I was inactive..

    Instagram was a lot easier back then, and I keep feeling like an idiot looking back and realizing the possibilities I've thrown away. Now I realize that every single penny, every single follower, like or click is worth it. I even started a journey thread with a niche I've never experienced before, just so I can keep being motivated, and even if I can't achieve my goals right away.. at least I wont give up again.

    Wish the best of luck to you OP.

    Best Regards,
    Jaymien.
     
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  9. Sherbert Hoover

    Sherbert Hoover Jr. Executive VIP Jr. VIP

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    What you need to realize is, although it is only a little bit of money, you have created a source of passive income. That's the goal that most everyone on this website are trying to reach. Take what you've learned in those past two years, revisit the site, and continue to build. It clearly has the potential to make money, now what are you going to do to expand your horizons?

    Good job, OP. The fact that you made money puts you in the top 10% of people on Black Hat World.
     
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  10. Eeter

    Eeter Registered Member

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    I had prior knowledge in computers, if that counts, but I had never built a website from the ground up. Like I said I used WordPress and a free WordPress theme which is extremely simple to use. Now that I think about it, I don't even have a logo on that site. It's literally just content with a bit of formatting.

    Your situation is exactly the one I'm talking about! Keep going, keep working and it WILL pay off.
     
  11. christianbed

    christianbed Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Good post, OP.

    Similar situation here...about a year ago I made a review of a piece of woodworking equipment that I'd purchased, and threw an amazon link on it.

    Since amazon isn't my thing, I forgot about it. Six months later, I started getting sales through that link...Christmas was the peak. I've made hundreds from that stupid little review that I did just to be helpful to people who might be wondering how the unit works. This allows me to buy some nice bottles of wine / scotch once in a while without feeling like a profligate.

    When I first saw commissions, I had no idea where they were coming from because it was so long ago. At first, I was like...
    [​IMG]
     
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  12. AdamsSixEcho

    AdamsSixEcho Registered Member

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    "...giving up on yourself is a deadly mistake."
    Yep, I guess everyone needs to learn this on their own. I was so excited when I made my first two websites a half year ago.
    On the first site I worked really hard for 2-3 weeks, learned about a niche I knew nothing about and wrote 20+ quality content reviews. Pretty much just like you.

    Then I made a micro niche site about a topic that was more familiar to me. Tried to generate traffic through social media, then I just gave up and convinced myself that I just need to let them age for a few months.
    They made a few bucks since then (around $30), but I know that if I'd been more persistent they could have a good audience by now. So right now I'm working on them again with a different approach and different plans to monetize.
     
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  13. ChanzGrande

    ChanzGrande Elite Member

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    I find your post to be very motivational, and it has an authentic feel often missing from this sort of post. Sure your earnings wasn't that great, but you clearly articulated the reason - you stopped doing the work. You're absolutely wise to look at this as an opportunity for yourself even.

    No need wondering what would have happened if you took additional steps towards creating more of these sites. Even today - you have the baseline layout of the site, what type of contents to post, how to automate portions of it, and you have the capacity to make the 50 MORE of these starting right now.

    I encourage you to build out of this post and build it into a journey where you actually scale your already profitable enterprise. Sure the niches aren't appealing, but knowing what you know now - who cares? Just build 50 of these this year, and you will establish a $5000+ per year recurring revenue stream. I bet you could actually make up to 200 of these this year if you pool your resources, and really hit it hard - > That's up to $20k dollars - not bad to start off next year knowing you got about $20k coming into the hopper with no more effort required on your part.

    Thanks for your post even if you don't take it to the next level - it does show that we all hit our head against the wall of demotivating factors in business, and it shows that breaking down that wall has the possibility for huge returns.
     
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  14. KenTZ

    KenTZ Regular Member

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    Bumping because more people need to read this.

    It just boggles my mind at how easy it is to truly become your own worst enemy. :(
     
  15. Lamuks

    Lamuks Regular Member

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    I am still experimenting with everything, CPA, amazon, adsense.. but right now, exactly nothing seems to work for me, it may not be the right niche or niches, or just unlucky at times. With the addition of ad blocking software adsense seems like a waste.

    But this was motivational, I will keep trying.