Wanda and Paula from AffiliateBlogOnline.com
Dear readers, today I am very excited to share Orangecopper’s Latest interview with the Wanda & Paula – Two friends who successfully operate the AffiliateBlogOnline.com hugely popular in the Amazon Affiliate marketing niche and successfully earning more than 10K USD every month only through the Amazon channel.
I am glad to see that they have taken out time from their busy schedule to craft awesome and info-rich answers to my questions that will help our readers to learn a lot about monetizing your blog with Amazon Affiliates.
Tell us about your team (Wanda n you) and about your main blog AffiliateBlogOnline.com. How did you both start the blog and how does it feel to work together as a team towards the same goal?
We have been working together as a team for a number of years now and started with a few different businesses. We work extremely well together and have never had an argument in the 10 or so years we have known each other…that’s pretty hard to achieve when you are not only good friends but business partners as well because usually, at some point you are going to disagree on how things are going to be run in the business. For some reason, we seem to come to the same conclusion on most things so it all tends to run smoothly. We also both love working online so it doesn’t feel like work to us. I think this is critical to making this business a success. Too many people come into the business simply to make money working from home but they don’t really enjoy it so success doesn’t come easily to them.
We decided that internet marketing was what could give us the freedom we really wanted so all of those other businesses we started have fallen by the wayside now. We were selling physical products at one point and it was a lot of work for little reward. Plus having a bricks and mortar business ties you down and you can’t just get up and go when the mood takes you – there are products to be packed and mailed, customers to be looked after and you can’t just shut down the business because you want to head off overseas for a couple of weeks. We both realized that it just wasn’t what we wanted out of life and internet marketing sounded so appealing….work from home and make money while you sleep…how good is that!?
So we decided to finally become serious about it all in 2008 and made it our goal to become super affiliates. I’m not really sure what the definition of a super affiliate is so we are not even sure we have reached that status yet, but we are earning enough now from our internet business not to have to worry about working for anyone else. It’s a good life and we intend to stick with it.
We started Affiliate Blog Online some years back now but we realized quite early on that the content we were adding wasn’t really up to scratch. Our thinking back then was to just get as many articles up as possible and stuff in as many keywords as possible in the hope that we would make money. It didn’t really work for Affiliate Blog Online or any of our niche sites for that matter. So at one point we decided to totally trash the site and start from scratch. We had around 200 posts on that old site so it wasn’t an easy decision to make but it had to be done. It was definitely worth it in the end.
Kindly explain the ABO business model and how do you successfully monetize the content you share with your readers for an income online.
Funnily enough we really don’t have a business model for our Affiliate Blog Online website and we don’t really monetize it all that well. It was never really meant to be a money making blog as such. We simply created it initially to share information about what we were doing to reach our goals. Even today with the big following we have on the site, we don’t really push too many products or plaster the site with ads like many other money making blogs. So if we simply had to rely on Affiliate Blog Online to make money we would probably have to go back to full-time work as it just doesn’t make that much. Maybe it will one day as our following increases but we aren’t trying too hard to do that at this point.
We also have a spin-off site amazonianprofitplan.com where we promote our eBook outlining in complete detail how to make money promoting Amazon products. We were so tired of buying eBooks that only tell you part of the plan and you have to continually buy more products to get the full story. So we decided to write the eBook on how we make money online and it is a fully detailed and comprehensive outline, and there is no up sell, readers get all the information they need to know about making money with this method in the one eBook.
Do you have other niche websites, if any please share more information on the strategies you adopt to make an Amazon based business model a successful one when there are so many other websites selling and promoting the same products.
We have over 20 niche websites however not all of them are making a lot of money. At one point, we were working on all of them at the one time. That was a big mistake and never got us anywhere. We were also adding poor quality content and that didn’t help either.
We realized that it really wasn’t working for us. It was five years of writing content and building websites and back-linking but we weren’t making much money. So that’s when we decided to stop and seriously look at what we were doing. I’ve always liked the quote “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got.” This was us in a nutshell – we kept doing the same things but it wasn’t working so why were we continuing to do it? It was madness really.
When we stopped and analyzed our business model we realized a number of things. Firstly that our content really wasn’t worth reading. It wasn’t terrible and it wasn’t duplicate or spun content but it really wasn’t all that helpful.
Secondly, we figured that we were spreading ourselves too thin. Not only were we working solidly on 20 different websites but anytime we saw an eBook with a good method for making money we would buy it up and try and implement it. So we had so many things on the go that we never really had time for anything and nothing got the attention it really needed.
And thirdly, even though we were getting traffic we weren’t really converting very well.
So to rectify each of these problems we did three things:
- We started to write quality content that would really help our readers…long well researched reviews and articles of around 800-1000 words or more. This made a massive difference to our conversion rates.
- We stopped working on all off our websites and focused on just one niche website and on that one website we only focused on a few pages at a time.
- We started linking to good quality Amazon products. Prior to that we were linking to merchants from other affiliate networks. We made sales but not a huge amount. When we changed to Amazon links our sales rocketed.
I see a lot of positive energy and life in your posts and comments, how do you manage your blogging activities, SEO etc and yet still stay totally pumped up with loads of energy?
I think we manage our business by staying focused on only a few things at the one time. It is so easy to get caught up in new methods for making money online and want to start different projects but that didn’t work for us in the past and we don’t want to go down that route again.
We want to be working less not more so we avoid a lot of joint ventures and interviews and similar activities because for us it isn’t all about the money. This business is more about the freedom that it can give us. We see a lot of successful internet marketers who spend more time on their business than they would in a regular nine to five job. I don’t see the point in that. Sure the money is nice but what’s the point if you are working day and night.
So for us it is about taking more time out for ourselves rather than spending all that time working (even if we don’t really see it as work) because it leads to a more balanced lifestyle. So when I drive up to Wandas place for the day to start work I know that we won’t be spending hours and hours staring at a computer – we will spend part of our working day meditating or going for a walk or listening to motivational tapes or doing a bit of Qigong. In other words we spend a lot of time on ourselves as well as the business.
I guess it all comes down to loving what we do and the enjoyment we get from seeing the success it brings to others who follow our method as outlined in our eBook “Amazonian Profit Plan”.
If a newbie was to start an Affiliate business online, what would be your suggestions and advice to them? Could you please describe in brief what does it take to build a successful, income generating affiliate business.
Our advice would be to only focus on one thing at a time. When we started out we kept building website after website. If we had stopped at the first one and kept at it we would have made money much sooner. There was nothing wrong with our first website but we never really gave it time to succeed and we thought that since it was only making a few dollars after a few months it meant that it wasn’t going to be a success so we moved on to the next one. This was a never ending cycle for us until we got to 20 or so websites.
If you stick with the one website and just one method for making money then you will see success a lot sooner.
This is our strategy now in a nutshell:
- Build one website only.
- On that website add five quality product reviews choosing really good quality products from Amazon.
- Work like crazy getting GOOD QUALITY back links to those five product reviews.
- At the same time, add quality informational type content to build up your site – one or two articles a week.
- Don’t give up.
If you were to name 1 factor that you might have wanted to correct when you started blogging and 1 factor that has helped you becomes successful, what would they be?
The one factor we would have wanted to correct is to not build anymore than one website until that first one was a success. If we had stopped at the first one we would have been making money a lot sooner.
And the one factor that has helped us become successful would have to be changing our philosophy to providing quality content.
Would you like to share any future plans or updates that you are planning in the near future?
We are currently in the process of developing a review site that focuses on affiliate products. We have purchased a lot of eBooks and software tools over the years to help with our internet business but when it comes to finding quality reviews for those products it can be difficult. So our new site Affiliate Reviews HQ (affiliatereviewshq.com) will offer high quality affiliate product reviews that are of real value to our readers. We want it to be the place that internet marketers go to when they are ready to buy a theme, a plugin, eBook or any other affiliate tool but want a good solid review that helps them with their final decision.