Setting Up Your First
Research is the essential first step of all marketing and selling, both online and offline. There is
no point in offering a business service that no
one needs or creating
a product for which there
is no demand. Establishing that there is a demand and therefore money to be made is the
driving force behind market research.
OW TO FIND A PROFITA
In online marketing, this equates to positioning your business where the
re is money being
spent. It is also necessary to establish a channel of contact with those who are spending so that
they can spend with you.
The majority of internet users are not online to spend money, although statistics indicate that
the number of peopl
e who are searching the web looking to buy something is rapidly increasing.
Nevertheless, the majority of internet users are online looking for information. To do this, they
use one of the major search engines, overwhelmingly Google as they control more th
an 70% of
the global search market. When this searcher uses Google, they type in a search term that best
describes what they are looking for.
For instance, if they are looking for information about “
gold and silver
”, this would be the
search term. This is
the results page they are presented with when they do so:
On this page, you have two different kinds of results. At the top left and down the right
side, you have the advertisements placed through Google. These are from advertisers who have
products or services to sell.
If you had a website that sold a product in this market, you too could advertise. To grab a spot
on the all
important first results page would cost a fortune. This probably puts it beyond your
budget or if not, your a
dvertising campaign would have to be spectacularly successful if you
were to make any money.
In the screen shot above, there are natural search results on the left hand side of the page,
beneath the ad block. These are sites that Google places there becaus
e the algorithm that
drives their searches sees these sites as being the most relevant to the search term used.
What this means is that the owners of the websites have put a large amount of time, effort and
probably money to get their site into one of thes
e top positions. Once again, this is likely to be
beyond your resources, particularly in the early days.
There is therefore one inescapable conclusion to be drawn. There is plenty of money being
spent on this market
there would not be so many advertisers
if there wasn’t
there is little or
no chance that you would get your hands on any of it if you targeted ‘gold and silver’.
What you need to do is go down a level to a smaller, tighter section of the overall market where
competition levels are not quite
so hot. This is often known as a niche market
you need to do is go down to a level of the market where competition levels are not quite so
hot. This is often known as niche market research.
A niche is a sub
sector of a major market where competition levels are reasonable enough for
you to make an impression and therefore some money.
To begin the process of isolating a niche, start with a market idea in mind. Weight loss is one
massive market but there are doz
ens of other like ‘make money online’, ‘photography’, ‘travel’,
‘music’, ‘health and fitness’, etc.
Take a look at Yahoo and look under the main category headings for many more market levels
After selecting a market, the next part of the research
process is to find a suitable niche within
that market. But remember, that market must be where money is being spent if your marketing
venture is to make any sense. Common sense is a good starting point for this decision. As an
example, it should be obviou
s there is money in the travel market
because web users are
always willing to spend on their vacation.
However, it is far less obvious that internet users are going to spend their money on TV related
or cooking stuff as there are a ton of these materials a
vailable for free.
Never forget that if you’re still not sure whether there is money in a market, run a Google
search to look for advertisers. Advertisers only spend money if there are marketing it. The
presence of ads there tells you there is money in the
market. Having found a market, the next
job is finding a niche within it.
When you are trying to narrow down to a niche, you should initially focus on two specific
Firstly, you have to find a niche where there are people
looking for information and spending
Secondly, you must establish that there are search terms that people use when looking for
information that you have a chance of featuring on the top 10 natural search results for.
Being able to do this is a funda
mental of online marketing. You must get your site on the front
page of the SERPs, when people are looking for what you have to offer.
For instance, if you build a site that focuses on travel, you want that site on search results pages
where people are loo
king for travel details.
When your site is near the top of the first travel results page, many searchers will come to your
site because they are interested in the information you offer. If however your site appears on a
dog training results page, you would
have no visitors even if you had the number one slot.
When your site appears near the top of a relevant search results page, you drive targeted
visitors to your site. When they see your site, you have an opportunity to make money.
There are a few different tools that I recommend you use to narrow your market ideas down to
a niche within that market.
To begin with, use the Free Google Keyword Tool to get some general ideas about possible
niches. I’ll continue with the travel mark
et ideas so this is my basi
c search terms:
This tool provides a list of 100 (800 if you have a google account) of the top search terms that
people have used to search for information in a specific market recently, using Google
There are plenty
of niche possibilities in this list. You could therefore carry any of these terms
forward to the next stage of the research process. However, for the purposes of illustration, I
am going to focus on the #12 result, ‘last minute travel’.
To take the research one stage further, I turn to the free google keyword research tool. What
you need to do is find a list of at least 15
20 travel related search terms that show a reasonable
number of searches every month.
After you’ve found a re
asonable amount of search phrases you need to check the number of
competing websites for that keyword phrase. To check this, run a Google search with your term
enclosed in quotation marks. (“Keyword phrase”)
Although it depends on the niche, any keyword wi
th less than 100,000 competing results is a
good one to use in your own marketing, with anything less than 50,000 being very good, and
less than 30,000 competing results being an excellent result.
Using the free google keyword tool, you should be able to b
uild a list of 15
20 suitable keyword
terms for your chosen niche idea. Assuming that you can, you have a viable idea to carry
forward to the next stage of the research process.
If you want to shortcut the keyword r
esearch process, there is a tremendous research tool that
you should definitely try. It is called Market Samurai and it effectively compresses all the work
you’ve done into a 10 minute job.
It’s got a lot of really advanced research and Search Engine Optimization features that will make
your research so much easier and quicker. There’s a free trial available too, so you have no
excuse not to
try it out
! The program also has a very expansive knowledge base where you can
learn a great deal more about keyword research. You receive the link when you register for the
Monetizing Your Blog
So far, you have found what seems to be a
viable niche. You’ve also established that there are keyword
terms with which you can send interested visitors to your website. Sending visitors to your site is of no
use if you cannot make money from them. Analyzing the moneymaking potential in this niche
therefore the next step.
There are many different ways of making money from your visitors. The main ones I recommend though
for network marketers are:
The first option, and easiest way to start producing revenue on your website is through Googl
program called AdSense. You sign up for a free account, and Google will place ads related to your niche
on your website. Every time a visitor clicks on one of these advertisements, you earn a percentage of the
advertising revenue generated.
age of this approach is that your site visitor does not need to spend money in order for you
to generate income. The disadvantage is that each click is likely to earn you .50
$1.00, which isn’t very
much. But it’s a place to start.
second option is to promote and sell products and services as an affiliate. In this scenario,
you promote a product or service on behalf of the product creator, manufacturer, wholesaler
or retailer in return for commission for every sale you refer.
antage of this is that the product already exists. This means that you can start selling
straightaway. Furthermore, there might be an affiliate support network in place that provides
ready make promotional materials, and you don’t have to
worry about produ
ct creation either.
The downside of affiliate marketing is that the product or service you are promoting is not
unique. There might be hundreds of other affiliates promoting exactly the same product or
service. There is therefore more competition to fight
Nevertheless, especially for the complete beginner, affiliate marketing offers a very simple and
You can find a list of various affiliate products on Clickbank
Once your website has begun to generate a decent amount of
traffic and subscribers
maybe want to purchase resell rights to
products. This is basically the same thing as being
an affiliate, but it’s an excellent way to
really crank up your commissions.
In order for this to
ypically the company you are affiliated with will require a recurring reseller’s fee,
must open up your own m
erchant account, and that you own the product you are promoting.
The upside to th
is that you earn 100% of the sale, minus the merchant and resellers fees. This is
compared to 30%
40% commissions on most products, in an affiliate program.
The downside is that if you can’t bring in the traffic to their campaigns,
you can go broke pretty
quickly paying all those recurring fees, and getting very little sales.
The last income stream that I recommend is a Network Marketing business, especially if the
product is closely related to your website’s niche.
This strategy can provi
de you with most leverage out of all of the strategies. As a quick
disclaimer for those who are thinking about chasing your friends and family. Remember, this is
about the NEW internet style of network marketing. For those of you who think pyramid
r scam, let me give you 4 names.
Sir Richard Branson
Each of these billionaires are involved, one way or another in the network marketing industry.
So unless you know something that they are their teams of lawyers
doesn’t, I suggest you
question your assumptions.
So why network marketing? Simple, leverage. In order to create true wealth, time freedom, and
a business that isn’t dependent on your personal work, you must have leverage. In your
business, you always hav
e to be asking yourself,
“How can I get someone else to do this for me?”
“How can I scale this?”
Network Marketing allows you to leverage thousands of people for very little investment, and
very little effort once you understand how to build a network mar
keting business using the
internet. Network Marketing is a long
term strategy that can help maximize your efforts.
These are by no means the only ways of earning money from your website, but for the majority
of online marketers and
network marketers, they are the most popular options. Also note, that
they are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
You could for example advertise an affiliate product and feature Google Adsense on the same
site. This is a strategy that is very common as i
t offers a balanced approach to making money, a
sort of ‘best of both worlds’ approach.
On one side you have affiliate products where it is more difficult to convince your site visitor to
take action (they must get their credit card out) but every sale gen
erates $10, $20, or even $30.
On the flipside, every click on your AdSense ads generates just $.50 or $1.00 but there should
be more of them because clicking ads costs nothing.
Publishing Your WordPress Website
Everyone knows blogging can be profitable,
but many people seem to think it’s too technically
challenging. They worry they won’t be able to install the script, or that they won’t be able to
figure out how to use it once it’s been installed.
Fortunately, blogging is much easier than you probably
think. Installing WordPress can be
completed in two minutes or less if you know what you’re doing, and five minutes if you’re
completely new to the internet. (Seriously! It’s that easy.)
Admittedly, it can be challenging to install WordPress from scratch.
You have to configure
databases and use FTP. The whole process can take fifteen minutes or more if you aren’t really
experienced. And if you do anything wrong, you’ll be pulling your hair out for hours trying to
figure out what it was!
Of course, if you us
e a neat little tool called Fantastico, you can have it installed from start to finish in no
time flat. No messing around with databases or any of that. Just fill out a few fields and click a button
and you’re done!
rst thing you’ll need to do to be able to use Fantastico to set up your WordPress blog is to
locate web hosting that actually has Fantastico available.
Fantastico is a script that runs on the cPanel platform. It allows users to install scripts on their
mains with just a click or two. It can install WordPress, as well as several other blog platforms,
forums, and much more. Not all hosting companies have it.
One hosting company that does have Fantastico is HostGator (
They are very inexpensive, and they have cPanel and Fantastico. Use the coupon code
“wordpress” to get one month of their “Baby Croc” plan for a penny!
If you aren’t sure if a hosting company offers Fantastico, be sure to conta
ct them before you
sign up. Most hosting companies have toll free numbers for their sales department, and many
also have live chat available if you don’t want to call. Just ask them if they use cPanel and
u have hosting, you’ll need to set up a domain name for your blog. You can choose to use an
existing domain name, or buy a new one for your blog. If you have a website, you could put your blog in
a subdirectory, or you could get a completely new domain for
Many hosting companies require you to have a domain name when you sign up unless you want to
purchase one through them, so you may want to do this before you locate hosting.
is one of the most reliable companies for buying a domain
name. If you search for “NameCheap coupon month year” on Google (without quotes) you’ll find a
coupon that will let you get a domain for less than $10. They have a new coupon every month.
If you al
ready have a domain name, you might want to get YourDomainBlog.com or something similar.
Remember you can always install it in YourDomain.com/blog if you don’t want to spring for an
When you sign up with yo
ur hosting company, you should receive an email that gives you instructions
for logging into cPanel on your server. You can contact your hosting company for help if you can’t find
the login information for cPanel.
Once you log in, locate the link for Fanta
stico. This will appear in different locations on different hosting
companies. The link may look something like this:
On the left side of the Fantastico screen, you will see a list of programs you can install with it. Under
“Blogs”, locate “WordPress” an
d click it.
On the next page, click “New Installation”.
Next, you’ll need to fill out some information:
Use the drop down menu at the top of the screen to choose the domain you wish to install WordPress
on. If you want to use the domain solely for yo
ur blog, leave the field underneath the drop down (Install
in directory) blank. Otherwise, enter the name of the directory you wish to install it in.
Next, add a username and password. This is what you’ll use to log in to your blog admin. I suggest NOT
ng “admin” as your username, because this is what most people use. It will make your blog easier to
hack, which is obviously not a good idea.
Your admin nickname is the name that will appear as the author of all the posts you make. If you are
branding a sp
ecific name, you’ll probably want to put your name there instead of using “Admin”.
Enter your email address next. This should be a valid email address. No one will see it. It will be used if
you ever forget your password, so make sure it’s an email address
you’ll always be able to access.
Finally, enter your blog name and description and click the “Install WordPress” button at the bottom of
On the next page, you’ll get a button that confirms the name of the MySQL database that will be created,
well as some basic information about your blog. Click the “Finish installation” button, and you will be
taken to a page with a link to log into your blog.
Click the link to visit the admin page and log in to verify WordPress installed correctly.
If you did
n’t click the link to get to your WordPress admin, it will be located at the following URL:
Note: there is an underscore between wp and admin, like this wp_admin.
If you forget your username and password, you can request your password be mailed to you. WordPress
will send your username and password to the email address you ente
red when you installed it.
Once you’ve found out of the installation was a success, it’s time to make a few tweaks in order to set
up an effective blog. Don’t skip the next section, because a WordPress blog isn’t set up well by default. If
you skip the nex
t section, you may find your blog doesn’t rank well in search engines and gets very little
There are a few things you need to do to your blog before you start posting if you want to ensure the
most possible tra
ffic and the best results for your efforts.
First, look near the bottom of the menu on the left side of your WordPress admin. Click “Settings”. Look
for “WordPress address (URL)” and “Site address (URL)” and enter www before the URL.
In other words, change
This will log you out of your admin panel, and you’ll have to log back in using the same username and
password you used be
Click “Settings” again. Underneath the “Settings” section, click “Permalinks”.
You’ll want to change the default permalinks structure to something more search engine friendly.
You might want this to be:
To create the first, with only the post name, enter this:
ou want it to be like the second, including the categoty, enter this:
Next, you need to install a couple of basic plugins. These plugins are very important if you want to get
good rankings in the search engines and to get good traffic.
The Google Sitemaps plugin creates a sitemap which can be submitted through Google Webmaster
Tools. This sitemap make
s it easier for Google’s web crawler to find all of your pages.
Submit your sitemap here:
One SEO Pack
You’ll want an SEO plugin, because WordPress is not naturally SEO
friendly. It doesn’t have native
support for customizing the title of the page, description, keywords, etc.
One SEO Pack is the most popular SEO plugin. It adds several extra features that will help your blog
rank better in the search engines.
I highly recommend using Akismet on your blog. It comes installed with WordPress, and it helps block a
lot of the spam comments you might otherwise get.
This plugin used to be free, but now it requires payment. It’s still worth it, but if you don’t want to pay
for the plugin, there are other spam blocking plugins that work relatively well.
This plugin gives you a widget for your blog’s sidebar that shows the people who left the most
comments on you
r blog. This lets them get more traffic, so people post comments more often.
Google seems to be giving a lot of weight to sites that get a lot of social attention, so it’s a great idea to
encourage people to comment.