It’s pretty easy to get some search engine traffic to your website. This article is not going to be about acquiring traffic, but rather something 100 times as important. This is a very underestimated skill that defines whether you make $1 for every 1000 visitors to your website or $100.
The art of monetization is the difference between an internet marketing pro and (no offense), you.
Here’s the deal, traffic is cheap and easy to get, but what you do with the traffic is way more important than how you get it.
This is my ultimate guide to monetizing SEO traffic like a champion. If you follow this guide, I guarantee you will raise your conversion rates, and increase the value of your visitors. (without having to get any more traffic to your website!)
This might not be the most entertaining topic to read about… but it’s probably the most valuable skill you need to learn.
Everyone wants a $7 eBook that will teach them the “Rags to Riches, push-button million dollar a day method…”
1) I won’t sell you that shit. It perpetuates the claim that all marketers are scammers.
2) That’s not what you need (it might be what you want…), this guide is what you need.
Master Monetization And You Will Have A Real Push-Button System
Here’s why: if you can learn to influence someone’s actions you can get them to opt-into your list, you can get them to purchase your products, and you can get them to worship you.
Ever wonder why you made an “impulse purchase,” amazing marketing is the reason.
Today I am going to teach you how to utilize this skill to your advantage as a marketer.
Implement this method and instead of needing 100,000 pageviews to get a sale, you could make 10 times as much money with 1/100th of the traffic.
You can thank me later when you’ve doubled your revenue with these methods.
The Simplest Way To Boost Your Income: Learn Monetization Psychology
The easiest way for me to break down monetization is through levels. Basically there are beginner monetization levels, there are intermediate levels, and there are the INSANE (read: professional) monetization methods.
In the coming sections I am going to break the most common monetization methods, talk about when they should be used, and then end with some valuable insights when it comes to monetizing a website.
Just so you know, I turned this (2,000+) word post into a special eBook, with some bonus content, so if you want to download it for free just go through the social locker. Thanks! I’m sure you’ll think its worth a few seconds of your time when you read it! If not, all the really valuable stuff is in this post!
Beginner Level Monetization: Don’t Use These!
Monetization Method 1: Adsense
What It Is: An advertising platform put forth by Google, where you put some code into your website that displays image and text links. You get paid each time someone clicks on an ad, with your revenue depending on the amount the advertiser is paying for the clicks. (Called CPC or cost per click).
Thoughts: I’m sorry to have to be the one to break it to you… but adsense sucks. They take a large percentage of the revenue, they pay you based on quantity not quality, and they will ban you whenever they please.
If I see adsense on your website I either assume that you are an idiot.. or you are just extremely new to marketing. Why would you EVER use an untargeted advertising service to monetize your website.
Well, assuming you were at least smart enough to choose a valuable/profitable niche for your website, that means people selling products to your visitors are actually pulling in tons of cash… and at most you are going to make a dollar or two per click.
Listen, if advertisers are willing to pay for this CPC traffic 24/7 for months on end, they are very obviously bringing in an enormous profit.
Why would you be a stepping-stone for these companies, YOU should be the one making money here… but more on that later.
The only time you should ever be using adsense to monetize your website is if your traffic sucks, yet you are bringing in a ton of it. For example, if your website is about underwater basket weaving, there probably aren’t a lot of products you could sell or market to your visitors. In this case throw up a bunch of adsense blocks, optimize them through split-testing for optimal performance, and then leave that site for something more profitable.
But Brandon, you posted a screen shot of your $1,500 adsense month in the beginning of this (amazing) guide…? Yes, I’m currently using adsense on one of my sites because I’m split-testing it versus other monetization sources, and because I like to diversify my income.
Trust me, adsense is the lazy marketer’s way of monetizing a website… don’t be a lazy marketer!
Monetization Method 2: Amazon Affiliate Links
What Is It: If you don’t know what these are, basically Amazon has an affiliate program where people can promote links to products on the site, and if you can get someone to click on your link, a “cookie” is placed on their computer relating to your affiliate ID. Then if they purchase anything from amazon in the next few weeks, you get a percentage of the sale (usually 4-8% of the sale).
Thoughts: Ehh… this isn’t really the end of the world… but all those pre-made amazon affiliate mini-sites that people sell on the forums for like $27 are terrible.
Trust me, you aren’t going to rank a single page on those terribly designed mini-sites. It isn’t 2004 anymore, and Google knows exactly what you are trying to do with an exact match domain and literally hundreds of affiliate links for similar products thrown all over your website.
In a similar manner, amazon affiliate links just suck on their own. You get like 4% to 8% of a products price… now this can work if you have millions of pageviews. But you don’t have millions of pageviews: face it, if you did you wouldn’t be reading this guide right now.
Intermediate Level Monetization: Some Uses
Monetization Method 1: CPA and Affiliate Marketing
What Is It: CPA refers to cost per acquisition, and typically refers to an getting someone to give their information. This could be in the form of an email, or it could be getting someone’s address/telephone number/other survey information. Affiliate marketing on the other hand refers to marketing a product that isn’t yours, and getting a commission from the (buying) traffic that you send to a sales page.
Thoughts: At least with CPA and affiliate marketing you can actually make a significant income if you know what you are doing… unfortunately almost no one actually knows how to market a product.
In reality, that’s what it comes down to: being able to sell a product. Most people just post a (fake) review of a product and think that their amazing 5 star rating is going to convince people to purchase a product.
Well, hate to break it to you, but that won’t work. People can see right through your wall of bullshit and have no desire to purchase that product which you effectively convinced them was a scam.
Here’s what you should have done: write a tutorial to using the product, write about an actual experience that you had with the produce or service, and be REAL.
That’s what people want when they are searching for a product review… contrary to popular belief, when I search for a review of the new Samsung Galaxy S4 I don’t want you to bullshit me and lie to me, while blatantly trying to get me to purchase it through your link.
The majority of marketers fail at affiliate marketing and CPA because they don’t know how to effectively “pre-sell” a product.
Let’s pretend like you are trying to be an affiliate for some software. Once you get traffic to your website, you need to tell people what the product is, why YOU purchased it, whether or not YOU actually gained value from the purchase and if you would HONESTLY recommend it to them.
Now, that is just a review example, but that goes for all of affiliate marketing. You need to build trust at every step of the way, by having a beautiful well-designed website (that isn’t covered in advertisements), and projecting an intelligent and relatable feeling throughout your entire branding.
Screw up one step of the way by coming off as a scam artist, or a liar, and you have just dropped your conversion rates by a huge percentage.
Note: Obviously if you rank for “buy ugg boots” and you get 100,000 targeted visits for that term, you can make a boatload of money with a crappily designed website… but just imagine how much MORE money you would make with proper monetization.
Note 2: CPA marketing is similar to affiliate marketing in the sense that you need to pre-sell the offer with your own marketing/content.
Get people into a buying mood and guess what they will do…
UBER MONETIZATION METHODS: My Secrets!
These are the smart methods, I’m sure you have heard of these before, but I promise you that you have never correctly utilized them.
Learn to monetize your website through these methods, and you will be able to KILL IT, in any niche you choose.
Monetization Method 1: Email List Building
What It Is: Collecting targeted emails from your visitors through an email marketing service.
Thoughts: Email marketing is extremely misused and underestimated. You probably know the basics of email marketing, aka offering an incentive for someone’s email… and then spamming them forever with autoresponder sequences that read as if they were written by a 5 year old… right? WRONG!
An email is effectively your visitors way of saying “I am trusting you with my contact information, please don’t be an asshole…” and if you send them spam, you are being an asshole and they will unsubscribe.
If you don’t have the time (or don’t want to put the effort in) to create high-quality content to give away to your email subscribers, then just quit marketing right now.
Also, if you are offering an eBook to your visitors as an incentive for them to subscribe… don’t have it be some MRR or PLR (basically free content) crap. Do you think they are going to respect you for that? Do you think THAT is going to help you increase their trust in you, and make them want to purchase your products?
For instance, do you think it would help me to release a terribly written, crap eBook… how valuable is the free content you are currently reading?
Build up an email list because although you might have more traffic pouring into your site right now… you have no idea if that same traffic will be with you in 6 months.
If you get hit by a Google update, do you want to lose 100% of your income stream, or would you rather have some protection from search algorithm updates, and also be able to take your business with you anywhere at any time.
Think about it, even if I delete my website off the face of the internet, I will still have my entire email list — which gives me direct contact with my most engaged readers.
Some valuable insight: Always go for the long-term profits by providing amazing value to your readers… don’t waste your own time, or your readers, because you are actually lowering the value of your website and your brand by spamming people with useless crap. I’m trying to help you make MORE money, right?
Overall, email marketing is probably the most valuable element of any website.
Monetization Method 2: Make Your Own Damn Product
Yeah, that’s right, I’m actually telling you the best SEO traffic monetization method requires a ton of work. Bro, it does suck that you have to put in a bunch of effort in order to make BOAT LOADS OF MONEY… but that’s life.
Grow up, and start working on your own product. (This could be an information product, a membership site, a video series… anything, just make it yourself).
Here’s why this is so amazing: you aren’t controlled by someone else. No one is making money off your traffic/work (aka CPA or affiliate marketing), that means higher profit margins, and more exclusive leads.
Yes, this once again means that you actually have to put in a lot of work to make your product/service valuable to a potential customer, but once again, you are in the wrong profession if you are afraid of putting in some effort.
Insight: The best time to make your own product for a niche is when there aren’t many products available, when the competition suck at marketing (aka they don’t have much of a brand following), and when you are in a profitable niche. (remember, there isn’t much value in having an underwater basket weaving website, but a personal finance website on the other hand…)
Want to really rake in the cash, start a recurring membership service/product. That means you get to bring in money from a sale each and every month. Obviously you will have a churn rate (the industry term for turnover or people dropping out of the purchase), but its still the way to get the most money out of your customers.
Seriously man, if there’s one thing you take away from this information: think outside the entire box. Be creative with your ideas, come up with something new + innovative… make a product that people want, no, NEED. Force them to purchase from you and you will be an effective marketer.
Hopefully you learned a ton of useful information from this guide.
I turned this 2,300+ word guide into an amazing eBook with some bonus content that wasn’t shared here. You can download it for free by sharing the guide… I think all my work is worth a simple social share, right?
If you feel like you have learned a thing or two from this guide… then SHARE IT!!!
Please, it’s free, and if I do say so myself, its awesome. Let your friends know about it, they’ll thank you.
Thanks again guys!
Oh yeah, FYI, I run monthly contest/giveaways on PageRankWorld… right now it’s a free month of consulting, where I will literally give you a month of skype calls, emails Q&A’s, and a report/personal strategic report of your site.
Essentially I will help you make more money from your website, over the course of a month… for free, all you have to do to enter into this contest is get on my email list.