Is it possible for a free member to make any money just using the free starter membership? It doesn't matter to me personally, because I'm already premium and committed to that. I'm just thinking in terms of how I present the free starter membership to potential referrals.

So here's a possible scenario:

  1. Person signs up for a free starter membership.
  2. They decide on a niche.
  3. They do some keyword research (up to 30 searches).
  4. They create a free website like: theirniche.siterubix.com.
  5. They set up their website and build out their main pages, as shown in the free lessons.
  6. They decide NOT to upgrade to Premium.
  7. They continue blogging on their free siterubix website.

Would that website eventually start to show up in search results and potentially earn affiliate income for that person?

I'm just wondering whether it would work similarly to how a free Blogger or Wordpress.com website would rank. I think it would, but I'm curious to know what everyone else's take on it is.

Don't get me wrong, I know that the premium membership and having your own domain is where it's at for maximum success. I'm just wondering if the free option is in any way a viable option for anybody?

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mijareze Premium
I think the potential is there to rank/make money depending on the niche but having a .com is better.
Ed
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Loes Premium
Siterubix for a free member is just for hobby sites. You can't add any plugins. The training is not complete. So it's suitable for people who want to make a travel report or a hobby collection.
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WilliamBoyle Premium
I have come across WordPress.com a few times in this post. Is not WordPress.com the paid version instead of WordPress.org which is the free version WA uses and other hosts? I guess you could try to find a way to rank a sitrubix domain but in the end, it wouldn't be worth it. WA owns your siterubix domain. It may be good for testing plugins and themes etc so you don't break your main domain. I have never come across a siterubix website in any Google search ever. This was a very good question and goes to the heart of the matter of 2 free websites for the starter membership. IMHO
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MarionBlack Premium
Yes wordpress.com hosts websites for a fairly hefty fee. They also have free subdomains which is what IMc was referring to.
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Josh From Oz Premium
I started 2 of my current sites as .siterubix.com sites and the reason I moved them over to their own domain is because they were getting traffic and sales. But... I was premium, so I could add plugins and do more with them then I think the starter member can do. I also have a siterubix site that I use solely as a website which gets traffic from pinterest only. Not organic traffic. So they definitely have their purpose. But without the proper training (Premium), I think a newbie would struggle to get them ranked.
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Marcus1978 Premium
Thanks Josh.
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MarionBlack Premium
I don't think anyone can really make money until they do more of the lessons than the free membership includes. A bit like pushing [you know what] uphill with a pointed stick.
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Marcus1978 Premium
This was definitely my impression when I went from Starter to Premium back in January 2015. I remember thinking, "Okay, so the only real way forward is to upgrade to Premium. The free starter membership is just to try WA out to see if you like it. Then you have to make a decision, stay or go."
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JeffBoivin Premium
Thanks to bring this point Marcus, Thanks to all of the members for your point of view that your suggested . Cheers, Jeff
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seesy62 Premium
I don't even consider them as websites, they are junky punky experimental subdomains that you could have a thousand of under your own domain.
They hardly rank and Google won't even display ADsense on them. Some search engines even warn clients before logging on such sites.
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Marcus1978 Premium
Okay, thanks for the information.
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tclough Premium
Member nathaniell has had success with getting a free site to rank.

http://onemorecupof-coffee.com/can-free-sites-really-be-successful/

I guess it can be done.

Tom
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Marcus1978 Premium
Thanks. I noticed that it was actually a guest post by Dom on Nathaniell's site.
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IMc Premium
But you'd need to know what back linking he was doing etc. Or if it really was all white hat.
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Marcus1978 Premium
Good point, IMc.
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tclough Premium
Right you are Marcus - thanks!
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Rich908 Premium
Kyle mentioned that you can earn income on siterubix but advises to have your own website. I use mine as a dummy run to practice on
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Marcus1978 Premium
Good plan.
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RobinHudson Premium
good questions Marcus! For me it's always important to tell the truth and it looks like you're after it. You can present something honestly and then let it go, knowing you did your part to give the person an option for the kind of life they want.
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Marcus1978 Premium
Thank you, Robin.
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IMc Premium
Probably not because Siterubix doesn't have the authority of say wordpress.com, tumblr, weebly, etc.

Google 'parasite site seo'. This is when people set up a site on a subdomain Eg your site.wordpress.com and rank it by blasting a lot of spammy links at it.

They are piggybacking on the authority of the main site and then taking advantage of the fact that a site like wordpress.com has millions of incoming links so you can get away with sending loads of spammy links to your site.

There's a guy called Charles Float who's stuff is worth reading for ranking these types of sites.
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Marcus1978 Premium
Ahh, I see. Thanks.

So the selling point of the free siterubix website is more that it is a way to practice? A free member can have a go at setting up a website, see how it all works, then if they want to move it to a domain later they can do that.

Or can I still sell them on the idea of being able to set up two free websites, but just not mention the fact that they might not rank well?

Of course, it goes without saying that my hope is that they will upgrade to Premium, but I'm just thinking of the best angle to ease them in at, if you know what I mean?
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IMc Premium
They're for practice. And they are two free websites. So nothing misleading about that. But have you ever seen a siterubix site in SERPs? ( Unless it's for a totally obscure keyword Eg you could rank a phrase like 'pink weightlifting dolphin ornaments' with a Siterubix site.)
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Marcus1978 Premium
Thank you.
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WilliamBoyle Premium
Yes, I know what you mean Marcus, but even though it's not mentioned I think they are more like practice sites. Been looking at the bounce out rate here with new refferals. Could it be WA was over hyped? Like, "build a website in 30 seconds"? Really?!
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Marcus1978 Premium
Yes, William, the building a website in 30 seconds is clearly nonsense. I wrote about this a while back. Let's face it, "building a website" to most people means a fully functioning website with content and everything, but that's not what you get after the 30 seconds. You have the empty shell of a website that still needs filling with stuff.

If I was to offer my services to build websites for a fee, they would expect more than just an empty site with no content on it, wouldn't they?

It's like saying you'll build someone a house, but there's no plumbing, electricity, furniture, or anything else. Just an empty shell. What use is that to anyone?
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WilliamBoyle Premium
Marcus, totally agree, I believe WA could do a much better job in explaining the website shell thing. New members see this, it's like a gotcha thing...not to mention it's totally ridiculous!
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Marcus1978 Premium
The thing is, it's a comparison between WordPress and the old slow way of creating a website with HTML code. But the people who come to WA will either have no previous experience of creating websites or will have played around with things like Blogger and Wordpress. So the whole idea that after a few clicks you have a bare website ready for filling with stuff, surely it's not really going to impress them? Surely hardly anyone is coming to WA having just spent ages struggling to build a website with HTML?

It's a bit like saying to someone these days: "I can get you a phone that you can use to browse the web". They would be like: "Yeah, so?"
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