3-Year WAnniversary: 3 Lessons Learned
Last Update: Aug 30, 2022
Well, it’s now been three years since I joined Wealthy Affiliate. Within a week of starting here, I was ready to upgrade to premium without hesitation.
From the basic training to the expert classes, and the supportive community, I couldn’t ask for any more from a platform such as WA. Now that I’m a premium plus member for the last year, I love utilizing the resources and learning new skills to build my business.
It’s been a year since I’ve written my last post (then my 2-year WAanniversary). Although I want to be more engaging and help more often at WA, my time is much better spent on mastering the training, expert classes, and writing content for my niche website.
I’m still checking out posts and updates here and there, so I try to balance it out. That's equally important when you're starting an online business.
For this post, I want to go over three valuable lessons I’ve learned within the last year. I’ve known about them for some time, but they didn’t hit home to me until several months ago.
1. Choose Your Niche On Passion (Not Just Money)
In the past, I’ve always thought we should pick niches that are the best for making money. Or, let’s say picking a niche that consists of only high-ticket affiliate programs (i.e. $1000 or more).
Although that might sound reasonable, you don’t want to pick a niche that you’ll lose interest in quickly. If that happens, it’s going to be hard to write regularly on your website.
It’s why picking a niche is one of the first things covered in the OEC training- and it’s one of the most important decisions to make. Choose a niche where you can help others get "x, y, or z" or solve a problem, not based on the number of dollars you want to earn.
My sole niche, if I were to focus on money, would likely fall under the fitness and health category. Fitness and exercise, however, are something I would easily lose interest in when it comes to a niche website.
I love exercising, but it’s not something I’m passionate about. I don't consider myself an expert in fitness or someone who would write articles every single week.
My point is
Don't pick a niche based on how much money you will make. Pick a niche that you have a genuine interest in, one that you will love doing research on, and provide helpful answers to your potential audience.
My current niche website is something I relish and love writing about. In the long run, not only will it be a profitable online business, but I will also find fulfillment and satisfaction by helping my readers.
2. Writing Content Still Rules
I cannot say that enough when providing feedback for new websites, but writing content is the key to long-term success. The key to a successful niche website is high-quality, helpful content.
The basis of the WA core training is to write content. You do that by following best practices, doing it consistently, and basically, it's a “rinse and repeat” cycle.
My niche website will have an easier time establishing a presence if I write more posts. The more I write and how often I do it will determine whether my website will do well in the long run.
Writing has gotten much easier over time
Over the last 15 months, I’ve been writing every week (publishing 2-3 posts weekly). Even more, I’ve been able to write posts in less than an hour (i.e. 1000-2000 words). So I feel that my productivity has increased with building out the website.
It’s nice that WA has helped me learn how to write more effectively (and faster). We have some members (even our very own, Kyle) who have provided helpful training on how to write faster.
When you’re just starting out, writing content should be your top priority. When it comes to a logo, how a website looks, or your stats through Google analytics, all of those things are secondary.
If you’re not at a point where you’re earning revenue or seeing massive success, website aesthetics and stats should be put to the side. Those things do matter, but only when you have content that produces the right results for your website.
My point is
Make content the focal point for your online business. After publishing 100-200 posts on your website (and seeing the results you desire), you can turn your attention to those secondary things afterward.
3. Success Comes From Patience
Of all the lessons I’ve learned and want to share with you, this one is probably the most important one to take away. It may be the best piece of advice I’ll ever give.
Patience is something most people struggle with today. Believe me, it’s frustrating when you're not at a specific stage in your business.
We live in a world where people desire instant gratification (online and offline). Especially when it comes to making money online, instant gratification is something I see a lot (even here in WA).
The ones who are here for a quick fix
From time to time, I’ll see new members typing in the live chat things such as:
“Hey all, how can I make some quick cash here?”
“Can anyone help me make money within 30 days? I really need to make money soon. Please help me!”
It saddens me to see those types of questions, as that’s the wrong mindset to have at WA. For those who’ve been here for a long time, we know this place is not a quick fix for financial problems.
The ones who get started, but quit shortly afterward
Also, there are members who start their websites, but shortly afterward, they’ll quit and not come back. It may be weeks or a couple of months they’ve worked on them, but somewhere in between, that patience wore off.
Thinking about it, it really saddens me to see those instances come up. I think of how much potential was wasted because some people are not willing to be patient.
Maybe some of them will come back after a hiatus, but others will give up and quit altogether.
Around the middle of last year, I gave up on my first niche website after some time.
Basically, I lost a lot of interest in that niche. After that, I started a new one with a clearer direction and more passion for the new niche.
I did a full reboot- I went through the OEC training (went through all of the lessons within seven months) and have been building my website out slowly.
I’ve been writing content every week for the last 15 months. I’m seeing progress and feel encouraged; however, I’m not seeing the results I want to have (at least not yet).
I’ll admit I’m frustrated. Not seeing tons of traffic and rankings on Google can be very discouraging.
But, does that give me a valid reason to stop from this point on?
HECK NO- as my work is far from done. A lot of people would probably give up at this point.
Based on where I’m at (and the niche I’ve chosen), it may take a little longer.
Which is OK- because that provides me with opportunities for improvement. Also, to figure out what I’m not doing right.
For example, I might need to narrow down my niche audience. Or, work more on keyword research. The majority of the keywords I’ve targeted are not ranked as of today.
So I believe those are things I’m going to be focusing on in the coming year ahead.
Being patient eventually pays off
It’s not easy to stay patient, especially when it comes to building a business. We all want to have successful businesses, but it won’t happen in a day, a week, a month (or even a year).
In my case, I believe it’s going to take me a little longer. But who knows, maybe things will change in the next six-twelve months. My situation can be totally different a year from now.
Here’s a good example to think about:
If you started a business today, where you knew for sure:
- It would take you two years to make your first dollar,
- Then maybe in four-five years, it becomes a seven-figure business.
- From that point on, you can scale and grow bigger. The sky is the limit.
Would you move forward and keep going?
I hope you say yes, but I know a lot of people may not go for it.
For a lot of people, waiting two to four years is too long, so it's not worth it. Instead, they prefer instant gratification- they want it now.
But for us, I think it’s well worth going in that direction. Why would you not want to go down that path if you knew for sure?
My point is
Each one of us here at WA desires something better and to be successful in life. If that’s a blog that makes three-four figures a month or turns it into a six-seven figure business in the long haul, anything is possible.
But not everyone is going to see success at the same time. For some people, it may be six-twelve months, two years, or even five years.
Whatever the time frame is, understand that patience can help you find success at some point. Success will happen if you stick to it long enough and never give up.
If there’s one piece of advice I want to share this year:
Patience is an underappreciated component of success. It will prepare you for tomorrow, next month, next year, five years, ten years, twenty years, and beyond.
If you’re willing to be patient (regardless of how long it will take), great things will happen down the road. When you are patient long enough, you will reap the benefits and rewards.
The past year working on my niche website has been a struggle, but I’ve learned a lot of valuable lessons. I use them as learning experiences, and I’ll do a better job moving forward.
One of the best parts about WA is our community. So whenever you get discouraged or lose patience, make sure to check out the latest blogs from other members.
I can’t tell you how many times I get excited when someone writes a success post. If that’s the first big commission, or seeing an explosion in website traffic, great things are still happening in our community.
There’s a lot of uncertainty and negativity going on around the world. But there are also great things happening as well.
Whether offline or online, we need to focus on the positive things happening. Much of the negativity and bad news put out is noise and doesn’t matter to you as an individual.
Tune out at times and focus on your potential for success. If that means building a successful business in the long run, that’s something to be cheerful about.
Thanks to Kyle and Carson for making this platform even better. Thanks to Jay (magistudios) and our expert instructors for conducting the weekly classes. It is well worth watching these classes- the information presented is golden.
If you’re a new member, you’ve come to the right place. There’s no better place to start your dream business than Wealthy Affiliate.
Go through each lesson of the core training, take action when necessary, and make writing your primary focus.
Rinse and repeat- Trust the process- The training works.
If you found this post helpful, bookmark it whenever you’re struggling or need motivation now and here.
Until next year (or maybe sooner!),
Happy Anniversary Eric.
It's great to hear from you.
This is excellent advice.
Take care, my friend.
Thank you, I agree that the advice will help a lot- especially for new members.
Thanks again- much appreciated :)
Hi Eric, and happy anniversary. I love your post. It's honest and you've helped encourage many beginners who wonder if they'll ever make money online.
You have what every entrepreneur needs... long-term vision. That's what it takes to succeed online. There's no such thing as get-rick-quick.
You're working consistently to create content, which is the foundation of any online business.
I wish you great success,
OMG, I really enjoyed reading your article. It is so inspiring and just what I needed to be encouraged! Thank you so much!
Absolutely, Suzanne. That’s what it’s about- the long-term vision.
When you build for the long-term, the rewards will be much greater. It’s why I advise on being patient, as it does take time and effort.
Thank you for your comment- much appreciated.
Great,I’m glad to know you enjoyed it and got a lot out of it.
All the best to your online ventures :)
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What a nice and hopefull post.
To be totally honest: I love my niche, for my first website and for my second new website, but seeing some results after almost three years now as well (in November), I am slightly getting depressed.
Because I did invest a lot of time and energy (and money) in trying to be succesfull with this and earning a basic income, but I'm still far from it.
I will be the first to admit that in the first 6 months,let's say it like it is, I had to learn a LOT, so my focus was there instead of writing informative blog posts. So it was kind of normal not making a dime with affiliate marketing.
While still learning all the (yes for sure, great!) classes here, I got side-tracked to much though.
Things like joining Ezoïc didn't turn out well for my website, it totally crashed and took a month to get back on track with my traffic and people starting to trust my site again.
While I made about 200 dollars a month the time before I used Ezoic, it went down to almost zero and it took me a while to figur out that was because of Ezoic messing things up.
But I realise now: that was also a learning curve and I can't really blaim the classes and teachers for this, they just provide information on how to make money with your website.
Still: frustratrion, after frustration,the ezoic thing was just one part, lol!
While I forget about the positive things happening to me (I am starting to get free products and my traffic is going up again), I tend to lose my patience now after almost three years, you would think that I would at least get a basic income by now? To be totally honest, I thought that I would be a bit further by now.
While I'm usually the most positive thinking and persistant person on this planet, I do think that that is a long time though and that is why people are giving up.
I think that I will need to cut down on too much information showing up in my mailbox, from webgoeroes like Neil Pattel and just focus back on blogging, and blogging! Because it messes with my head and I'm loosing time and energy on all of it.
I hope you will get back on track soon again as well with your new passio website, good luck!
Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Those are things to take into consideration, and you’ve shown what you can do.
It’s good that you learned from those mistakes, as you can do better moving forward.
Very thoughtful to look over. Thank you very much for sharing.
All the best,