My Roadmap to Success

Last Update: January 11, 2017

I've been an Internet Marketer since 2005. I've worked full-time 100% for myself since 2008. It's been over nine years since I started working for myself.

During this time, I've developed my own strategies to building a full-time Internet Marketing business from scratch. I've always had these ideas in my head, but only recently have I put them "on paper" here at Wealthy Affiliate.

I've decided to create guides that share my experiences and walk you through the steps I take when deciding to launch a new website. This Roadmap is designed to help lead you through my guides and get you well on your way to building a successful online business.

The guides here cover everything from how I pick a niche to how I come up with content for the site, to how I monetize the site and make money from it. Like I said, these are the EXACT strategies I use every day. I know first hand that they work. :)

*A fair warning first.*

These steps will take at least a few weeks to complete. I know it sounds like a lot right now, but you're building an Internet Marketing business from the ground up. You have to invest some time up-front. Your work and efforts will be seriously rewarded in the long-haul.

I highly recommend first reading every single link and training in here. Don't do any work or start anything just yet.

Just read.

Try and understand the processes behind making money as an Internet Marketer. Take notes if you want, but just don't do anything.

After you've read everything first, circle back around to Step 1. and start doing the actual work. Some parts may be over your head right now, but that's OK. It'll come together after you've started building. And if you're stuck, you can leave a comment at the bottom of this guide. I'll be more than happy to help!

Reminder: Read everything first!


(Guides marked with a ★ are Premium level guides!)

Finding a niche is the very first step in creating your website. You very well can't create a website without an idea first.

If you're not in the right niche or it's a niche you have little to no experience or interest in, all of you hard work will be for nothing. We need to first find the right niche for you.

I'll start with the four criteria I follow when picking a new niche...

1. The niche has to be a topic that I can update often
2. The niche has to be something that personally interests me
3. The niche can be expanded to an authority style website
4. There has to be a way to tie products into my posts

Keep those criteria in mind and read through my first training below.

My Top 5 Niche Picks

With this guide, I'll walk you through the thought processes I use when picking out a niche. I'll also give you 5 examples of niches that I would personally pursue, complete with explanations of why these would make good niches, trend graphs (and how to create your own!), and example posts I would create for these niches.

One thing about niches, your first niche will most likely not be your last niche.

It's very easy to get hung up on this stage and struggle to make progress with your business. Read through the training and write down 5 ideas of your own. From there you can narrow down to which one really stands out to you.

There's also room to pursue more than one niche. As a Starter you get 2 free SiteRubix websites and as a Premium member, you get of your own domain names. While it will double your work load, you can pursue 2 (or more!) niches at once. Be prepared to write if you go down this path!

Start with My Top 5 Niche Picks training and write down the ideas you come up with!

10 Hot Niche Picks for 2016 & 2017

If you need a few more ideas, I have recently researched and looked into 10 additional niches that I like for the upcoming months.

These are more current niches but they will show you how I'm using trends to find topics that other people are searching for online.

Here's where things start to get fun.

We're now going to take your niche idea and turn it into an income producing website. That's why you're here right?!

However, before your site starts to make money, we need to lay down the foundations. There are two things you have to work on here.

  1. Your website
  2. Yourself
Your website is obvious. Yourself, less so. You do need a bit of discipline here. Websites aren't static environments. You're going to need to develop habits that get you writing, creating content, and meeting new people.

Your website will never truly be "finished" meaning there will never come a time where you have nothing more to write about for your niche. This holds especially true these days as Google LOVES recent, noteworthy content. It's best to prepare yourself mentally to get ready to work!

This brings me to the first Premium guide I've created here...

Starting from Scratch: The Strategies I Use to Build & Maintain Successful Websites

This training is going to help you lay the foundations for your site.

I cover niche picking again in more detail, how to decide on a domain name (including my secret tip for finding high quality domain names!), how to write pillar articles, how to create content that people want to read, how to create content that converts, and so much more.

I run through the entire training with TWO of my own niches to help you visualize what makes a website. You'll definitely want to take notes through this one! As you read through each page, try and apply my strategies to the niche you've picked in Step 1.

Here's the link again:

After you read through that training, it's time to start working on your website with Kyle's level 2 certification course...

Building Your Own Traffic Producing Website

Take my strategies and your niche, and start physically building your website. Kyle has 4 certification courses here that will walk you through the process of getting your website up and online.

I have two final guides for you.

15 Reasons Why Your Site Isn’t Listed In Google, Generating Traffic, or Making Money

Up first is my newest *Premium-only* training.

I've been spending the past few weeks in chat taking notes.

I wanted to narrow down the biggest issues people were having with getting their websites listed in Google, generating traffic from higher rankings or making money.

Over those weeks, I’ve come to find there are 15 mistakes that pop up more often than others.

This training is designed to point out each mistake, let you know why it’s a mistake, and how to correct it so you can see those rankings, visitors, and sales.

Here are the 15 problems I cover. Don't forget, each problem is discussed in-depth and a solution is offered!

  1. You haven't setup Google Webmaster Tools, Analytics, or Authorship
  2. You haven't built and submitted a sitemap
  3. You're accidentally stuffing keywords
  4. You only have a few base pages created
  5. You have fewer than 10-12 articles
  6. You don't have a posting schedule
  7. You haven't reached out to other sites, blogs, or communities
  8. You're rewriting sales copy
  9. You're rehashing old information
  10. You're focusing on money rather than quality
  11. Your posts read like sales pitches
  12. You're waiting for Google to do something
  13. You're stat checking every 5 minutes
  14. You've "finished" your website
  15. You haven't given it enough time
You're lucky to be receiving this now because you'll be able to identify any problems you might have BEFORE you run into them. After your site is up and running, take a read through this guide and make any necessary changes.

Give yourself a headstart and read this one immediately:

The Diamond Traffic Program

Finally, we have Kyle's Diamond traffic program. This will be your last stop. Kyle has composed 4 separate guides in his program that will really have you start generating some serious traffic with your site. You can find that here:

The End?


I said it early on in this message, but it definitely needs to be repeated. Expect to spend the next couple of weeks working on your website. You're building a business from the ground up. It'll take a fair bit of time and effort. You're a paying member here at Wealthy Affiliate. There are thousands of trainings, a number of tools, and plenty of support at hand. Make use of them!

One last thing: always remember that every single member here (myself included!) started in the EXACT same position you're in now. Perseverance breeds success.

  1. Complete access to every resource listed in my Roadmap
  2. Complete access to EVERYTHING offered at Wealthy Affiliate
  3. Complete access to ME! Ask me questions and get my professional advice!
  4. Complete access to everything you would need to create and grow a full-time business online

Click here and kickstart your online business as a Premium member!

The beauty of Wealthy Affiliate is the ability to connect with professional marketers at any time. If you have any questions at all, or need anything answered, cleared up, or you just want to chat, leave me a comment below!

I'm here to help and will be happy to assist in any way possible.

Welcome again to Wealthy Affiliate and see you around the site!


Join the Discussion
Write something…
Recent messages
Thanks for the Info. At present I am not in a position to spend money before earning as I have to support my daughter and grand daughter financially.
So I have a few questions for you.
Is it not the right place for me. if so i dont want to waste my energy and time on this. If i can start for free and start paying as i earn money Yes I can do it. Please advise me so that I wlll decide wat i should do 2day. THank you. Tc stay blessed always
rohit1770 Premium
Hello Surekhaji,
Do you live in India? If so, its now free for us and you can start as a starter member without paying any charges. When your sites start earning, you can take up the premium membership. Its really good and I am sure you will enjoy being here..
DianaJ2 Premium
Thank you for the information presented here. Yes, it will take some time for me to get the ball rolling as I work a full-time job; so it means that WA will have to be done in my spare time. I may have mentioned that I am new to internet marketing and will have to take it one step at a time. From what I've seen, WA is the best I've ever encountered. Wish I found it a long time ago!
MariaJ2 Premium
This information is awesome! Thanks for putting it together.
Lucindarella Premium
Thanks, this was helpful.
bijanamid1 Premium
Thank you, Steve. I will start to work on my website right away.

Do you know anything about Divi?
Steve, as usual, awesome training!!!

I am getting to work right away...
Pashley59 Premium
Great information. I will utilize the information.
Great information Steve Thank you
Edag Premium
Thanks Steve
Idalia Premium
LKerkhove Premium
Kerkhove.linda Thanks a lot ,I know without your help &golden; advice it should not work out for making my awesome website. Thank you Steve & Kyle for supporting .
LitaW Premium
This is great! Thank you Steve!
Avecita Premium
I'm going to get working away on this. The guides look excellent at first glance. I'll get stuck in! : )
JimForbes Premium
Bloody brilliant, thank you very much.
hey am just getting started so i think i have to first learn more about the basics before thinking of upgrading to premium.
I am interested in the upgrade to premium but I can't afford at the moment. Should I wait until the day I can afford or is the any way I can can stared even if it is a lower account
Robert-A Premium
You have two free sites with free domain name and free hosting so of course you can start building a business for yourself.
There are limits of course and the main one will be that you can't use the contact functions.
What you need to do is contact people who you believe have helped you in a positive way and exchange email addresses so that you can continue to ask for help.
Once you have funds to upgrade then you will at least have something to show for your hard work and can continue with your efforts.
If you don't do this and try all by yourself you will find it hard.
This is just my personal opinion and only you can decide what's best for you.
Enjoy your Tuesday.
Robert Allan
HelenpDoyle Premium
Mali, I just hopped over and read your profile and am now following you.

One comment here is, if you can't afford it now save up and wait for November. In November WA has a 'Black Friday' special of a lower premium fee. And if you take it up your annual membership will always cost just this amount.
i believe that is true. and i think that is what am going to do. thanks for sharing this post
Csess Premium
Thank you Steve,this and everything you've provided to me has been extremely helpful. I'm working on training.reading,listening and watching.going over your first week's emails. My time is very limited so i want to be as prepared as i can be . I will be bombarding you soon with questions once i develop my plan more.
LBrown2 Premium
Steve, the article is great! It does answer some of my questions about my niche and websites. Thanks!
Jasmine27 Premium
Thanks this is helpful.
ciera1988 Premium
Very helpful. Thanks!
AnthonySimo Premium
wow Steve....thats a lot to take in for a noob such as myself...but i will have to admit it answered a few of my questions but at the same time it raised a few more...but i'm getting thru it and appreciate all your help bro
Thank you so much, very helpful, = )
Anneika Premium
Thanks, Steve I work observe hours not to mention I work the night shift with that being said I am not sure how I lucked on to this site but I have never felt so empowered by You Kyle and the rest of my fellow entrepreneurs. If I have ever felt before I could succeed before with you guys I truly feel like I will be this time. I will continue to learn and work at this until I find that niche that will send me forward. Thank you so much!
TerriD1 Premium
Thanks, Steve. I am slow going at this. I want to really absorb what I am getting training in. I will be following you a lot. You, Kyle and so many others have already given me so much encouragement.

Thanks you.

Terri D
Mohamed313 Premium
thanks man
tvegavega Premium
This is one of the most informative posts on this site! I have bookmarked it for future review. I'm sure I will be referring to it often. I can't thank you enough for sharing this very important information! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Dreamnova Premium
I started to build my website but now I want to go through this roadmap before I do anything else to my site. I want to be sure I've covered all my bases. Thanks for the great info.
Mailun Premium
Okay. I read this. I will read everything first... How many hours wil this take?
Before start building the website I need to do research about my niche?
oxygen4oz Premium
All the answers you're seeking are in the training courses. You build your site as you learn along, little by little. I's a long process and it only depends on you how fast you're progressing. How many hours? Countless!!! Yes, you do need to research your niche before building the site; the niche is like a section in a big library where your site is a book; you need to know what shelf exactly your book belongs in that library. Welcome and Good Luck! If you want to get anywhere with your learning, you will have to become Premium in order to gain access to all the valuable courses. I'm pretty cheap when people are asking me for money in exchange for a virtual gain, but there is a lot of bang for your buck in that training. The way I see it, even if I don't make a penny with my website (hope that won't be the case), the knowledge I gain is still worth my money. The decision is all yours!
Mailun Premium
Thank you for the answer. So , i can work on this 10 hrs /week... Sometimes more... So it will take me 6 months? The niche i had chosen isn't that dificult... But i want to have knowledge before i start anything ... 47$ /month is big money for me... It is good for someone with a lot of free time . But i am single mom, work 50hrs/week and have 2 kids who are very active at the gym... And have a household to run... That is also why i want to begin as a starter. Just want to learn the course first before becoming an active member.
oxygen4oz Premium
You will only have access to Course 1, Lesson 1 and 2 if you don't become a member. However, it is not my place to tell you what or how much you should be investing. I was just stating the facts and sharing my personal experience, in hopes it will help you.
Oma07 Premium
I have read this, now time to look at the links. Then reread the entire road map. Then implement it in to my site.
JamesMichel Premium
All right. I'm ready to work. I finished the read through. Now its back to the beginning for implementation. This work you have done is a great start for me, I can only begin to imagine what you got out of it as you built it (the teacher always learns the most)!
Well done. And Congratulations!!
Mailun Premium
And how are things going now James Michel?
JimmieShiner Premium
Wow! Incredible instruction Steve. I've got a lot of work to do but I'm ready for it. Thanks again
cutt2242 Premium
Thank Steve for the info.
Robert-A Premium
It doesn't matter what link you click on within WA if you are logged into your own account because your own Affiliate Link will be on every page anyway no matter what other persons training/lesson you land on.
Try it and see!
have a nice day people.
Hi Steve, thanks for the training. Question; why is it that when I click on any of your links embedded in your training I would end up with a video where Kyle is introducing the premium membership? Maybe I am missing something.
It just means that it's a premium-only post. You're account isn't premium, so it's telling you to upgrade. That's all.
1happyme Premium
When I signed up I upgraded to premium for the first month - just to try it out and to get the best start possible.
But I cannot see any advantage. Please explain Steven.
ramonalee Premium
Thank you, Steve. I have a website that I want to transfer and can use the tips.
Thanks Steve, Good Stuff but back to Affiliate Bootcamp.
dmitryrose Premium
Thanks Steve, very helpful stuff :)
craigglewis Premium
Hi Steve, thanks for all the assistance thus far. You have provide a lot of helpful info :) Now off to build a site :)

laurenjean Premium
Awesome - thanks Steve! Especially enjoyed the 15 Reasons my Site isn't listed on Google. I think I should print these out and paste them above my computer for easy reference. Now, to get to work!
Thank you this is definitely helpful.
Helen123 Premium
Really interesting !! There are a few things that I need to do but I think thats because I've not got to those 'lessons' yet, the site map is definitely a new one to me, I don't even know what one of those is, but ... I bet theres a lesson on it somewhere, so Ill go off and do that now. thanks !
jefurs Premium
Well I've tried that, I'm going to try this. I'm just getting into this slowly. Finally went yearly to commit myself seriously and now ready to start learning this business. I'm exited about making this work for me too.
shay57 Premium
I 've already upgraded to premium on 11-11-15 I will definitely be visiting this page I am stuck on lesson 1 course 3 creating pages for your website sent a question to the community waiting for reply
AriefWibowo Premium
This is amazing article! I will follow your roadmap! Thank you and TERIMA KASIH!!
FMuiruri Premium
thank you!
Mar4Wealthy Premium
Hard work is what it takes to be successful and
Mar4Wealthy Premium
I appreciate your emails as its loaded with great content
This is great Steve, I need to upgrade though to see all your training which I do plan on doing. So thanks for the help.
AmyGarbacz Premium
Making my way through the process. Thank you for the information, support, & guidance.
manifestator Premium
.Thank you,gracias,obrigado,bedankt,grazie,and many others ways to say it.
LKnox1 Premium
Thanks, Steve. Excellent information. I appreciate it!
RBersani Premium
Thank you Steve
chrisart80 Premium
Thanks for sharing this vaulable info, Steve... I look forward to apply it in my own business !!
Shalorod Premium
Thanks for the info. I did not understand some of it, that's how new I am to this. I have been working on the lessons and website for a while and I am stuck with seems like two simple things but I cannot get them to work. I am having trouble linking my website to comments to get feedback. I have tried copy paste but no luck. Any ideas as to what I am doing wrong. Next, I have given feedback on several websites but my history shows no credits earned and no comments approved. Can someone please help me. I have been fussing with this for 2 weeks.
Mahalo, Loke
hotboxdeals Premium
most comments have to be moderated first. Maybe the person has not approved it yet. Sometimes, It takes others a little longer to get a response. Go to the page you want feedback or comments to. Click your link at the top and copy and then come back here and paste it. It will show up as the link you want us to see. I usually get mine from actually being on my site and just do copy and paste.
Loudu Premium
thanks for all the info sure it will be useful
AleishaM Premium
Thank you for the valuable information. This is really helpful and eye opening.
kingoflotto Premium
thanks for sharing your knowledge...
AchuthanN1 Premium
Excellent job Steve. This is really very helpful for beginners like me and for many others too.
Alrehawi Premium
rich of experiences ,it will be one of the best guides.,thank you .
hotboxdeals Premium
I have just saved this as one of my favorites, I am going to print this off and have my layout in front of me. Thank you for posting this. I cant wait to read your tutorial, Its very exciting to try something different Ive been a robot for way too long Its my turn to enjoy life. I will take alot of insight to what you have produced and work it into mine
Beezo1122 Premium
Hello hotboxfeals. I read your post and learned that a post can be saved into a favorites section. Now I just need to know how to do it. Thanks for making me aware of this function.

sepdonau2 Premium
Thank you Steve for narrowing steps for beginner like myself. Without you I wouldn't know where to start first.
ChekLiong Premium
Thank you Steve for your effort to put in so much training information for us to read and follow up. However as a newbie I would rather go step by step to finish one training then going to the next training. Too much information at the beginning really confuse me and do not know what to do next. I think for me important thing is first to complete the Get Started Here and then need your guide to move on to the next training lesson.
sepdonau2 Premium
Certainly agree with you.
Very interesting read, time to take action
JamesJJr Premium
Appreciate the info I will be using it.
lycefair Premium
Thanks Steve, I will keep it handy for reference for myself
mattmike Premium
wonderful information, much needed by me. Thanks Steve, Deanna
abloba Premium
Thanks Steve for your help.
Thanks Steve this is great guide.
Thanks for sharing your knowledge Steve, it really helps a lot.
Thanks Steve appreciate your Guide lines.
Thanks Steve.
MerikeM Premium
Just created my website 2 minutes ago. Great advice here to keep in mind while going! Thank you.
Dear steve just you think when i got premium it deduct only 19$ it correct ..if so not it will deduct full amout for one year and i should create a web site also..then how i eran money and how i deposit for my account..plese explain me..these things still i dont have clear idea for this and im full time work in IT i can handle it..that 19$ per one month then how much i should pay for this
See you soon ..
Thank you..
I am so new to your site Steve, I am just starting to realize and appreciate what a Godsend it/you are in the face of many many previous, futile, attempts to make an income on line. My level of belief is starting to rise. Skepticism is dissipating lol.
Rymach22 Premium
Great thank you Steve!
GSM Premium
Awesome. Thank you Steve.
marcelg Premium
Hey Steve, thanks! I like how you've laid it all out here.
Thank you for the inspiration...but we all need help getting started before we know enough to upgrade to premium. Getting to first base is a crucial step before premium....Roosky
NemiraB Premium
Great post, I am lucky, that I found it:) Thank you:)
Tomkins007 Premium
Thanks great post :)
DeeMac Premium
Cheers Steve for your very informative post :)
You are a genius, Steve.
mruiz0884 Premium
Your professionalism on this topic is very apparent. I like to look at material from different perspectives. Thanks again!
Thanks for sharing this piece, it is very helpful and gives me some insight as to what to look for as I continue to create my websites.
Thanks again Steve :)
Free2BMe Premium
This is simply awesome! Thanks for this roadmap to success.
veteran Premium
Very informative article Steve. Thank you.
AshleyNegrau Premium
Nice article, very helpful.
chowie Premium
Hey there Steve! Your 2014 Roadmap to Success is absolutely awesome. Thank you so much for your generosity in sharing what you know and helping us achieve our IM goals.
silver53 Premium
this is very good, excellent advice.
pyrenees1982 Premium
My friend Steve, you have described the process as if you are inside my "brain", making sure that these information are properly galvanized in the right spots. An excellent teacher(my opinion) is one whose student(s) could say.. I have no doubt understood the subject matter, sir. Steve, you are "the Man". Thanks a lot.
That is exactly what I'm doing at this time is read and learn as much as I can. You are such an inspiration and encourage people to take a next step into online business fearlessly!!! Maybe it's just me :))
Thanks a lot Steve, I'm taking every thing step by step like you instructed thank you
So, I did read parts without stars. Very clear. Inspiring. Helpful. Thank you for investing your time. Time is all I can invest at this point and I am willing to do it.
cocoboheme Premium
Thanks for taking time to share that with us.
Tavit Premium
I cannot tell you how inspiring this is and how relieved to know that there are instructions and people available to help on any level. Bless you.
Channy27 Premium
Thanks you so much Steve.
Thanks Steve, great advices.
janicebowles Premium
This is brilliant, thank you Steve.