Welcome to aaron chua make money blog

Hi, welcome to my blog. In this part of my world, I talked about how to achieve financial freedom by learning how to make money online through creating sites and earning from them.

Below are some current and past make money projects that details my learning journey.

My current experiment in making 50 amazon site niches. If you have not been following this challenge, best place to start is this resource page for the amazon challenge, that lists all the articles that I have written so far.

My experiment in making 1000 a month through adsense in 9 months.

If you came here looking for low cost startup ideas, here are 140 startup ideas that you can browse through.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

How to make 1000 per month in adsense with 1 site

This is will be my journal as well as step by step guide on how I intend to create a new authority site and take it to USD1000 in adsense by end of June 2011. It is definitely a very realistic timeframe and I hope that whatever I have written here will help somebody who is struggling with adsene in general. That being said, I am not the expert. There are better adsense gurus out there such as Griz and Court and Mark and the xfactor guy.

I have taken sites to USD1000 using adsense programme before so this is not new to me. In fact, my passive income goals for 2011 is to take 10 such sites to 1k, which will net me a 10k per month passive income. A year ago, this target seems so far away but now, I feel that it is within reaching distance because I have the knowledge and resources now that I do not have 1 year ago. Hopefully, you can be as successful as well.

Ok, back to the topic of how to make 1k per month in adsense.

Here is how I would go back doing it. This is not the only way but is the way that I found to be effective for me.

Step 1: adsense niche selection
After dabbing in countless niches over the past year, I realise not all niches are created equal. By this, I do not mean just in terms of money making potential. Rather, some niches are just difficult to expand on as a useful adsense site.

For example, a product based site should not be an adsense site. Not only can a affilitate site make more money but is more useful for the searcher as well. If you are searching for an ipad cover, you want to go to a site that offers you the chance to buy an ipad cover. You do not want to go a site that rambles on about how useful is the cover, where can you buy it etc. I rather put an affilitate link in my ipad cover article after reviewing a couple of designs. That is what a product site should be offering. So, my criteria for choosing an adsense niche has been narowed down to the following:
  • information based
  • have new products being introduced constantly (will explain why later)
  • the niche must have high CPC in general (over USD1 per click)

Step 2: Set up the site and post a couple of articles on it

After you have done your niche selection, pick a couple of easy keywords to start with. If you do not know how to analyse competition for your keywords, check this article on how to build authority site. In it, I described a simple way of doing so.

Step 3: Build 100+ backlinks
With the keywords selected, write the articles and post them up. The next step will be the challenging part where most will give up. It is time to build backlinks. I recommend post runner as one of the best backlink system out there. It is a network of blogs owned by different people so you get a wide diverse range of places to promote your articles. For experience, if you want a strong site, you need at least 100 links so be prepared to get busy. Write the guest post articles that promote those you have written for your site and post them to the postrunner system. This might take 1-2 months.

Step 4: New post that target new products
After the 100 links, your site should start to gain a little trust from Google. If not, you might need to wait 1-2 months more. Anyway, it is time to start writing for your site again. This time, we will write only about new products that have been introduced in our niche. The reason is simple. New products have little competition in the search engines so it is easier to rank. There are 2 benefits to doing so:
  1. Once these articles start to rank on the first page, your site will gain more trust from Google. The more pages you have that is ranked, the more trust your site will be. That is how authority sites are built and is the approach that is advised by Griz.
  2. You will also start to see traffic very early on if the new products can generate interest. This means that you can start to make money much faster compared to targeting lucrative keywords that have lots of competition. You can still do so but it means you will need to wait for a long time before seeing any results.
That is why in my niche selection, I only go after those niches that have new products that I can target constantly. In fact, I make sure that there is a couple of sites that will provide me with such information so that I don't get stuck on trying to find new products. I just go to these sites and write an article about whatever is new. If the new product has been featured on mass media, even better as it will likely generate traffic if you can rank for it.

Step 5: Backlink your most profitable articles until they are number one
Once you have finished the articles, allow them the site to just sit there for a month. After that, analyse which pages generates the most traffic. That will be your winners and it is time to backlink them until their keywords reach number one.

That's it.

I am using the above step to build a new site that will give me 1k by end of June 2011. I have already selected the niche and I have already at step 4 with it. Currently, the site has 25 articles and each article makes between USD3-5 dollars on average without me doing any backlinks for them. My intention is to finish up the 100 articles first, which will net me about USD300-500 per month and analyse the data to see which keywords to backlink. Once I have backlinked my most profitable keywords, the entire site should yield me USD1k.

So, I will be reporting back here on the progress of this site every month. (Btw, this is not a main thing for me. I am starting this new site to see if my approach is sound. I have other more important projects that are making me money now so treat this as an experiment.)

Currently, here are the stats for Dec (until Dec 21). The numbers in brackets represents last month's figure.

adsense: USD55 (USD8)
adsense impressions: 1,100 (140)
articles live: 25 (5)

So, overall, the site is off to a good start. The numbers might be low now but I think the growth will be good. Let's find out if that is the case. See you in the next update on my experiment to take a new site to USD1000 in adsense by end of june 2011.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

What are long tail keywords How to backlink long tail keywords

A short post (Edit: not really short) today as one of my reader (out of 2? LOL) emailed me some questions on long tail keywords which I thought would be better answered via a post that can benefit anybody who might stumble upon my blog.

The question was "I read your blog on targetting long tail keywords which can potentially get more traffic into my website way more quickly and was wondering if you can share more on what are your traffic getting methods and giving so many different variations of long tails, how you backlink them."

So the topic at hand: long tail keywords. I have briefly mentioned them in my previous articles on how to select keywords for your blog and how to pick keywords that generates passive income, but I am not done so in a thoughtful and systematic way so here we go.

What are long tail keywords?
If you have read Chris Andersen's book on the longtail, you will know about this concept. Basically, it says that aggregating your longtail demand can add up to quite a substantial revenue given that the cost of generating these long tail demand is low in the digital age. This concept holds true for online marketing. While the main phase keyword will always generate more traffic, they are not enough to give you the 800 to 1000 visitors a day that is needed to make a significant income for any site. These numbers can only be achieved by generating lots of long tail keywords that surrounds your main keywords.

Importance of long tail keywords
Besides giving you more traffic, why is long tail keywords important? One of the main reason is that long tail keywords are usually buying keywords. For example, people searching for 'ebook reader' are not necessary buyers as they can be people looking for information about ebook readers in general. However, someone who types in "where to buy cheap ebook reader" is going to serious in buying one. So, if your site generates lots of longtail keyword searches that contains buying intentions, your income will most likely increase as well.

Another benefit is that long tail keywords are easier to rank. That will give you two bonuses. Firstly, the more pages you have that are ranked, the more trust Google has in your site, which increases your overall authority. Once you have become an authority, going for more competitive keywords will be a much simpler task. The second bonus is that you might hit upon something that brings you significant traffic even though it is a long tail. I have had instances where a 5 word long tail produces about 40-50 hits on my site.

How to generate long tail keywords
Now that you understand the importance of long tail keywords, the next thing is to generate them. This is where a lot of different strategies can be used. This is how I do it but there lots of different ways. If you have a unique approach and will like to share them, please leave a comment.

Keyword tools: I used all the usual google keywords tools: including google adword tool, google suggest and google insight. Among the three, google suggest is really useful. I like to add these operators to get more longtail keywords that have buying intention:

"for": this to get a list of keywords that tells you who is the receiving user of the keywords e.g. "ebook readers for kids"

"under": this will give you a list of prices that users are willing to buy

"in": this is a location based keyword that is really important if you targeting geo based ads

"w": this is a funny one. by adding a w and a space between the w and your keyword, google might give you a list of question based keywords such as "where to buy ebook reader" or "who sells ebook readers" etc

Long post: when you site has certain trust and age, long post such as this one can really give you keywords that you never thought of. If you are making money through adsense, then it is worthwhile to hook your analytics and adsense account so that you know which long tail keyword triggers high paying ads.

How to backlink longtails
Once you have include lots of longtail keywords in your content, it is time to watch the analytics. One of my adsense site that generated over 1k in earnings have thousands of long tail being generated every day. Trying to backlink all of them will be impossible. Here is my criteria in choosing which keywords to backlink:

High potential: if a long tail is in page two and is generating consistent clicks (1-5) or traffic (10-30) per week, it is worthwhile to backlink them until they hit number one

Containing my main keyword: if a bunch of long tails has a common keyword that I want to rank, I would give them at least 1-2 backlinks since they will help my main keyword

High CPC: if a keyword generates a high CPC such as above USD5 or even USD10 per click, I would backlink that. It might help to trigger even more of such high paying ads.

In summary, long tail keywords are really important to any SEO efforts and for making passive income. If you master this, it will be easier for you to build any site and start to earn money from it within a short timeframe.

Btw, the vacation has been great so far. My lovely wife and I have spent 3 days in Holland (Amsterdam and Den Haag) and we are now currently in Belgium. In the coming days, we will spending a couple of days in Luxembourg, Munich and Prague. It is super cold right now but I am enjoying myself. It also gave me a taste of how my dream life will be. Traveling and making money online while doing so. This is a great way to live! I did some calculation and figure out I need to make 30k a month to be able to live our dream of traveling all year around. This is a 5 year target that I have set for myself which is entirely doable.

In fact, in the coming posts, I will be talking more about how to really scale my online business models beyond adsense and amazon. If you are read the book entitled "what get you here will not get you there", you will know that jumping from one state (say making 5k a month in passive income) to another state (say making 50 or even 100k a month) requires a total shift in how you do things. If you do not change with the different states, you will probably not be able to get to a higher ground. Personally, I am used to different business models since I am from a startup background so applying that to my online business should be very interesting for anyone who wants to really grow their passive income.

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Tips to earning USD1000 with Amazon within 6 months

In my previous post on making USD500 with Amazon, I thought that my total earnings for Nov will be around that number. The good news is that it exceeded my target by quite a few hundred dollars....

What happened during the last few days is that my traffic really picked up and I was getting USD60-USD90 days. All that added up to increase my Amazon earnings quite significantly. Now, I want to set another target for myself.

USD3000 per month by end of June 2011. Let's see if I can hit that as well.

For new readers, Amazon is not my only source of online income. I started with Adsense much earlier and have already reached a full time income with that. Amazon was the new challenge I set for myself and I am happy to see that I have progressed in my understanding on how to make money with it. Once I hit the 3k target, I might move to a new form of monetization to learn new stuff. It is good to diversify your online earnings in case anything goes wrong with one particular approach. That being said, beginners should not juggle too much balls at once. My recommendation is to master one monetization method first before moving to the next.

Now, on to the new meat of the post, which is to share some of the things I have learned during my Amazon challenge.

Tip 1= Product selection is everything. Unlike adsense which pays you for every click, you need to people to buy for Amazon. Picking products that will accomplish that is the hard part. You will need to experiment with quite a number of products from different niches before finding the one that can convert. You can either do this through Hubpages or free hosted sites. I prefer the latter although it is more work because I gain another site that I can control for backlinks...

Tip 2= When testing your niches, always go for long tail first. These are easier to rank and will let you know in the fastest time possible on whether that niche is worth developing into a full site. If a long tail can bring you traffic that converts, you know that main niche will be very profitable. Why do you think Griz always target long tail first when developing any sites?

Tip 3= Amazon sites convert better when they are prettier. Unlike adsense when you need to be more ugly to draw clicks, people tend to buy more if your site looks to be more like a professional store. I tested a few themes and the better looking ones always draws more sales.

Tip 4= Authority sites can make more money in the long run. Majority of my Amazon earnings just come from 1 site. It was earnings peanuts before Nov but once it gains the all important trust from Google, the kind of growth is quite scary. Not only that, the potential for expansion seems to be limitless as you can always add in new product keywords to draw more traffic and sales.

Tip 5= When building authority sites for product niches, remember to go for both product specific keywords such as kenwood smoothie maker and general evergreen keywords such as best smoothie makers. The former can be ranked easily and helps your site to gain trust from Google through its ranking as well as to help you to make money faster. The latter is to let your site be more passive in the long run so that you don't have to worry about the buying interest for a particular product model slowing down.

Tip 6= Search out communities for your niche to fish out new product keywords even before they are on Amazon. If you are the first, the position will not be easily eroded if you have a strong site and have send some backlinks to these new product keywords.

The above is not a step by step guide to earning money from Amazon. Dave from making money on the Internet is the guru in Amazon and I suggest that you read his blog for specific instructions. What I have written are just my own personal experiences. Hope this will be useful to you and good luck in making money with Amazon.