Can I Really Do This? An Update After 14 Months.

Last Update: May 02, 2019

It's late. I've been working, yet again, all night on my website.

I decided to take a break and update my expenses/revenues chart to see where I'm at. Last week I paid for another year of WA... my second year. Converting to CDN dollars, I'm now over $1000 in the hole from this all. That's just from membership fees and domain registration.

Anyone else here wondering if this is going to work (financially)? EVER?

I have 88 posts, approx 450 comments, get traffic of about 80-100 visitors a day (most from Pinterest, although organic is growing).

My husband has been really supportive of this idea, and I'm trying to stay positive and keep working, chipping away, moving forward as best I can. I have 2 very busy little kids though, so finding time and energy isn't always easy. If I can keep up 1 or 2 posts a week, I'm realistically happy.

I'm just not seeing the money come, and I'm not sure what to do. My conversion rate on Amazon is 11.4% (12 months average), so that's not too bad, but I'm still only at $215 commission total!

Anyone have some brilliant advice for me to get things turned around? Being $1000 in the hole, in order to keep going, I'm going to have to start seeing $100/month commission, just to finally break even after 2 years hard work! Not sure I can do that in this niche... even Halloween build-up has been not NEARLY as busy as I'd hoped so far!

www.kidslovedressup.com I'd love some advice from those of you who HAVE made it work.

Again, it's late. I'm feeling frustrated. And when I do that, I tend to blog about it here rather than complain to my (amazingly supportive) husband. You guys "get it", I think.

Thanks for reading, and g'nite!

** edited May 2019: This site is one I eventually "abandoned". It still makes me around $20 USD per month, 18 months after I last added anything. Which is great.

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furkan2665 Premium
Hi I just read your writing and I hope thing are going well for you.
after this writing, I really wonder how is your progress.
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MarlaineB Premium
Hey Furkan,
I started a second site in November and I'm getting somewhere with it, finally! First $100 commission month this month, actually. And I can see how it'll be growing. My first site (kids dress up niche) was just going no where, no matter how much work I put into it.
My hard part is finding enough time to work on it these days... full time motherhood is both busy and exhausting. :) But I'm feeling good about the direction my site is going, FINALLY.
How are things with you? Your boxing site taking off?
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furkan2665 Premium
I am glad that it is going for your second website :) Sometimes changing direction is necessary.
I am still struggling to get traffic. I made some mistakes and these resulted in traffic loss. It dropped to half but If I get 600-650 organic visitors I think I can reach my goals which is $1000 but right now it is just 50 visitors. I wish you good luck with your site : )
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furkan2665 Premium
I think 650 organic visitors is a realistic goal, right? According to your experiences what do you think?
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MarlaineB Premium
Hmmm... 600-650 per day? Or per week? I have no idea really about what's realistic for your niche, but content = traffic... the more content, eventually the more traffic... and more traffic = more sales.
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furkan2665 Premium
650 per day : ) I think I can achieve it since I can get into a lot of different things about my niche :) Yes thank you : ) you are right and have a nice day
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BIS Premium
Hi Marlaine - congratulations on creating such a comprehensive site. You've done lots of work on it. I can understand your frustration. Sending you some thoughts in a pm

Beverley
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MarlaineB Premium
You are seriously wonderful. Thank you so, so much!!
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laurenjean Premium
Hi Marlaine, I know how you feel. Our situations are very similar. Is Amazon your only affiliate program? Have you done WA Affiliate Bootcamp?
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MarlaineB Premium
Hi Laurenjean,
I did the certification course from start to finish, with this site.
I am pretty much all Amazon.
My hesitation with doing the Affiliate Bootcamp is that it's in the Make Money Online niche... and I want to be sure affiliate marketing actually WORKS before I try to sell it to everyone else, if that make sense! I'm no expert in it - and I'd like to be before I try to "fake it" to persuade someone else to start it up! :)
How about you?
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laurenjean Premium
Hi Marlaine,

I'm only through the first Phase of Affiliate Bootcamp and have only done one WA review and it's already made a difference - am getting so many more affiliate referrals .

I strongly recommend doing it. The Make Money Online niche is not technically my niche either, but I've worked it into two of my sites. (InspiringMompreneurs and LaurenKinghorn)

You could add just a page on your existing website - maybe linked to your about me page.

I would seriously look at other affiliate programs as Amazon does not pay high percentage commission, plus their cookies only last a couple of days so it takes a looooong time to build up enough traffic to make good money on Amazon sales.

WA pays nearly 50% commission with lifetime cookies. Nothing to sneeze at.

Have you been receiving requests to guest post on your site yet?
That's another great way of receiving income. You can charge people to guest post on your site.

Shout if you need more info on how to set this up.

All the best
Lauren
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ericcantu Premium
One thing that jumped out right away is the number of comments you have for your posts. Yours is a bit low at only averaging 5 per post. One of the things I do immediately when I publish a post is go to SiteComments and request 5 comments. I do the same in the Give and Take comments thread. This gives me 10 comments to which I'll reply to each, given me 10 more for a total of 20 per post right out of the gate.

Google loves engagement and this is an area where you can easily improve overnight :) People also love seeing engagement on a site they're looking through. When they see 20 comments they feel they are in the right place as opposed to when they see 2.

Personally, there's nothing wrong with taking inventory of what you're doing and deciding to move in another direction. It's not like you're scrapping an idea. It's simply a matter of taking the knowledge you now have and applying it in a different area. Have you tried the Affiliate Bootcamp? While amazon's commissions may not be what you'd like them to be, WA has an incredible affiliate program.

I bring it up because I've had great success with it. Granted, it's not an overnight thing, you'd be starting from scratch, but i know it's possible to start earning $1000+ per month in 8-10 months because that's what I've done.

Sometimes we just need a recharge of the batteries, right?
Maybe this post can help you. Whether you push forward with your current site or move in another direction, do so with focus and drive and keep moving forward :)
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MarlaineB Premium
Thank you, Eric! I appreciate your comments and advice!
How on earth do you find the time to get the 10 comments for others done before requesting 5 of your own on each post LOL? :) You must be blessed with the ability to go on little sleep, or are able to do this full time. If I can just get posts written themselves after my kids are finally in bed, sometimes that's stretching it, unfortunately. It IS very good advice though - and something to keep in mind going forwards.

I'm hesitant to start the MMO niche as I'm definitely no expert in it - I'd feel a bit too "fake" trying to sell what I'm not good at yet myself! In truth though, it seems that it's one of the ONLY niches that beginners are able to "make work".

I think I seriously need to consider starting fresh with a new niche, one that has a higher payout though.

I appreciate your taking the time to comment, and I wish you much success!
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ericcantu Premium
The SiteComments site takes no time at all. Back when I had no credits, I'd just comment on one or two sites in-between breaks. I did this first because I knew I'd need comments later, but really I was doing this to get inspiration from other people's sites. I wanted to see what other people were doing, and see what I liked and didn't like. When it came time to request comments, I'd already have the credits necessary. And even if I needed to write a comment or two, that literally takes like 5 minutes lol. It's even quicker on the give and take comments thread. I've always just kept with the schedule of 2-3 posts per week and with every post I make sure to get that engagement right away. Here's a couple other things you may already do that I've done to help build up that traffic over time :)
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MarlaineB Premium
Awesome, thanks! :)
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