Two Years At Wealthy Affiliate Today!
I logged into Wealthy Affiliate this morning and I big notification comes up saying congratulations - you have a new badge for being at WA for 2 years.
Can it seriously only be 2 years? It feels like I have been a part of this incredible community for at least double that amount of time.
I wish I could write in this post everything that I have learned but that would impossible. In honor of this awesome milestone I will just share a little bit about my journey since joining WA and what being a member here has given me.
If you are new here this will show you what this platform can help you achieve if you take everything here with both hands and work your ass off. And this is key - you will have to work your ass off if you want what I have now.
In 2011 I gave birth to my baby girl, my first child. I was working for myself, from home doing bookkeeping. I didn't really enjoy it but I was good at it and I had enough customers to pay my way. I was doing ok.
For some strange reason I believed I was Superwoman and that I would be able to continue to work from home with my little girl on my hip and keep up with my work load. Delusional? Yes probably. I can still hear my mom trying not to giggle when I told her I would keep working just like I was, take a quick break to pop out my baby and keep my baby at home with me while I worked.
By the time she was a few months old I could see that it would not be possible. I realized that if I wanted to continue to work I would need to put her in a creche. I was heart broken and I put her in a creche to get by.
Suddenly I wasn't happy with my life. I suddenly hated bookkeeping. It was boring and I was angry. I didn't want to put my daughter into a creche so I could go home and work my ass off doing something I now hate... to pay her creche fees to enable me to work.
It also became clear that although I may be living someone else's dream of being able to work for myself from home, I wanted more. If you do bookkeeping you are stuck at an hourly rate and let's face it - there are only so many hours in a month. I had a child now and I didn't want a cap on what I could earn.
I wanted to save money for her for university, I wanted to buy our own house, I wanted to put money away from her... and if I stayed doing what I was doing I would never be able to earn more.
It all felt so wrong and I made a decision to change.
I decided to open up an online baby store, nothing was going to stop me. And nothing did. I got someone to design me a website, I bought stock and away I went.
I loved it immensely but I hit challenge after challenge. I won't go into all the challenges I faced, I met each and every one head on.
One of these challenges was that when I had my online store built for me I thought YAY... ok now I just have to wait for people to arrive and start buying right?
(I can actually hear all the oldies here giggling in pity...)
Oh how naive I was. I thought as soon as you put up a website people find you. OMG how wrong I was.
My website was built in 2012 and I had no idea how to use the damn thing. I didn't know how to upload a product. I didn't know how to change a thing. I knew nothing.
Now don't think for one minute that stopped me. I figured out Facebook marketing very quickly and I managed to make all my first sales on Facebook. I tried to get my Facebook fans to go to my website to buy things but they just wouldn't and I couldn't understand why.
So for nearly a year nobody bought a thing on my website and that was devastating. But I did make sales in other ways and I did grow my business.
As soon as I had my website I was searching online constantly trying to find a place that could teach me how to do things. I just knew there had to be an easier way.
I did learn a few things here and there online but I also learned a lot of the wrong things which I thought was right. It was a case of 1 step forward and 2 steps back for a long time.
I did manage to start getting traffic to my website and I was making sales on my website very slowly.
And all this time I was still searching for something, something that would give me the key to everything.
On 25 June 2017 I came across an article written by someone online about this absolutely incredible website that would give me all the information I will ever need to grow an online business (yeah right, I have heard this BS before) so I went to have a look expecting another rubbish website and what did I find?
Wealthy Affiliate! I was skeptical for about 20 minutes but through the things I did manage to learn over the years I could see Wealthy Affiliate for what it was. I must have been the fastest Premium sign up in the history of WA...
Yes I had access to the first course but I wanted to see it all and RIGHT NOW! Geez did I get my credit card out fast!
I was so excited I didn't know what to do with myself. I had found the key I had been searching for, I had what I needed to grow my business.
I shot through all the courses sucking up all the information I could. I launched another 2 websites.
One online marketing blog because I just love working online, I love sharing what I know. The other is a blog about my addiction because I am an alcoholic and a drug addict in recovery.
Those two websites I set up partly to practice on and partly as a hobby. Both of those 2 websites now earn me an income every month. Not a massive income, but they pay their own way plus some.
Now what happened to my online store?
After finding Wealthy Affiliate I found an easier way to make money online than grafting my ass off with an online store with my own stock. Buying in stock, storing it, marketing it, packaging it and then shipping it... well that is a LOT of work. (It was so much work that my two children were sitting in creche from 8am to 5pm every day.)
Wealthy Affiliate showed me how to make money without doing any of that.
The result is that 8 months after joining Wealthy Affiliate I made the decision to close my online store, flog all my stock, and change my website to a mommy blog instead.
I have to be honest here and say it was such a leap of faith for me. I took everything I had worked so hard for and let it go, taking a jump into the unknown. I put all my energy into making a full time income as a blogger.
The result of this? Yes I made it!
There were some hairy moments and there have been many late nights working hard on my websites.
I am a happier person, I don't have to rely on anyone else (product suppliers, couriers etc) for my success. The only person standing between me and my business is me and that is the way that I like it.
My journey working online started shortly after my daughter was born, and it was her that really sparked this off for me. My children are the reason I need to make this business work. Everything I do is for them.
They have now been at playschool only in the mornings since March last year (instead of staying till 5pm so I can work) and they are home with me in the afternoons. Yes I often get some work done in the afternoon when they are home and yes often I work on the weekend while my husband takes them out....and late at night.
I am still working like this because I have goals I want to meet. I am going to make my website so huge and popular that I can name my price for advertising on my website, no matter how obscene. I will have so much traffic one day that I just have to write one post and add one affiliate link in to meet my monthly expense... yes I know that is a lot but that is where I will be.
Then I will take my kids to Disney World and start having some real fun.
Here is my 3 month traffic report for March - May 2016 which is just before I found Wealthy Affiliate.
And 2 years later the same 3 months as before....
Now here comes the big question - do I really NEED Wealthy Affiliate anymore? Can I get by on my own from here?
I don't think I need Wealthy Affiliate so much anymore, the thing is that I am making a full time income and I spend the majority of my day on my websites creating content and marketing it.
I am quite confident I could leave and continue to succeed. So why am I still here?
That is easy for me to answer and there is more than one reason.
This community literally changed my life and for that I will be eternally grateful. So for that I want to continue to be a member to show my gratitude and loyalty, plus I would like to be able to help others to achieve the same.
Yes my time is so limited but perhaps there is something I can do to help someone else change their life.
Like writing this post today, maybe another mom reads this and realizes she CAN do the same as me.
Then I am not so big headed to think I know everything, of course I don't. There will always be something new I can learn that can help me improve my business. The internet is an every changing thing, there is always something new happening. I believe that to stay at the top of your game you must keep up to date with what is happening.
Kyle and Carson are always updating everything here and keeping us all informed.
Besides my referrals to WA and the training I publish here cover my monthly membership fees plus a bit to spare.
I don't think I will ever leave Wealthy Affiliate, the support, the community and the up to date training are just too valuable to me.
Here are some blog posts that highlight some of my challenges and successes along the way during these 2 years:
Ok those are not just a few blog posts, those are a load of posts.... but those are all the highlights and struggles that I have had over the last two years that I have shared on this platform. Maybe if you are starting out it can give you an idea what to expect.
The point here is that I have been here 2 years and Wealthy Affiliate changed my life (and that of my family) in a huge way. You can have this too.
I see so many new people arriving here asking how long before they start making money. It is not that simple. Making money in this way requires hard work and dedication.
As you can see from my blog posts I made my first sale in 4 months and by 8 months in I started doing this full time although I wasn't making a full time income. I would say that now 2 years in I am making a nice enough full time income online.
The amount of money I make varies month to month. Some months are tight, others are comfortable but I am not making a killing yet. But watch this space, because I will be soon :)
Happy Sunday Peeps!