The motivation for this post is that when I was first starting out, I spend way too much time trying to find personal accounts of people who had “been there and done that,” trying to get a glimpse of whether or not internet marketing was a realistic opportunity for building a passive income stream.
So here it is: my review of my life as an online marketer, with all the pros and cons, ups and downs involved.
The Internet Marketing Business Review
Firstly, I guess I’ll start with the dream.
My aim, above all else, was twofold:
- I never wanted to get another “normal” job.
- I wanted to work on my terms: any time, any where.
Today, I’m happy to say that I’m living that dream. My work online allows me to work on my schedule, which frees me to pursue extra hobbies and give back to those less fortunate.
Right now, as I write this post I’m volunteering for 3 months in Mexico staying in a small beach-side town. That would never be possible with a normal 9 to 5!
Getting Started and Initial Challenges
Honestly, the most difficult part of building my affiliate business was getting started.
Before I wrote a single post, I’d been thinking about starting a website for years. I’d even bought a few domains and invested in developing sites on those domains, only to give up and decide earning money online was next to impossible, something akin to winning the lottery.
Then, one day I decided I was just going to try it out. I started out slowly, with a single site, and quickly became frustrated when I wasn’t seeing any traffic after a few months.
Then I joined Wealthy Affiliate, which offers affiliate training and other resources, and if it weren’t for the encouragement I found in the community there, I probably would have given up again.
But, I stuck with it, and learned that having a lull for the first few months of any new site is completely normal. Getting through those first few months is what separates those who will succeed from those who don’t.
It’s tough, I’m not going to lie. The work itself isn’t difficult (anyone can write a blog, right?), but for me it was the psychological aspect of pushing through when I wasn’t seeing results and my friends and family were telling me I was crazy for even trying.
(Those same friends still spend 60+ hours a week in a cubicle!)
My first site was around the 6 month mark when things started to improve.
At first, I noticed an uptick in organic search impressions. Then came an increase in traffic to my site. From there, I was able to learn how to convert that traffic into sales.
Since my primary product at the time was a subscription based service, the relatively small amounts of money (I remember being super excited about my first $10 sale!) started to add up.
I realized that not only were my initial sales turning into repeat customers, but that every new page I posted was working together with ones I’d written 6 months before.
Whereas when I first started thinking in terms of earning a few hundred dollars a month, I gradually began to think in terms of adding a few hundred dollars a month to my income. In effect, I realized that once I hit a base level (in terms of site age, size, content, etc), I could effectively give myself a raise every month!
Day To Day Life
Finally, I want to talk a little bit about the day to day life of being an internet marketer.
As I mentioned earlier, the biggest benefit in my mind is the complete freedom it provides. Regardless of whether you want to sit on a beach or spend more time at home with your kids, you’ll have the option to choose your own hours and location.
That said, you should know that being successful with internet marketing requires that you think of it like any other job.
While most people have a false idea that passive income means you don’t have to work, you should know you will be spending lots of hours in front of the computer, and how productive those hours are is up to you.
Especially since the results of your work often don’t materialize for a few months after you’ve put in the time, it’s easy to fall into the trap of “but I already did it,” or “I guess it could wait until tomorrow.”
You need to plan ahead and be diligent about how you use your time in order to be effective.
Conclusions and How To Get Started
So there it is, my internet marketing business review.
Overall, making the decision to become a full time internet marketer was one of the best things I ever did.
While there are challenges to getting going, I find that those challenges have largely gone away over time. I think that’s partly because I’ve adapted to how this world works, and partly because I have multiple projects at various stages of development. The revenue from older sites allows me to push through with the newer ones.
Becoming successful takes time and a fair amount of hard work. That said, affiliate marketing is a business that you can build in your spare time, at whatever level you feel comfortable with.
More hours upfront = faster growth.
It’s that simple.
If you’re ready to get started with internet marketing, I highly recommend you sign up for an affiliate marketing course to help you navigate those crucial early days of your business.
As I mentioned before, the one that worked for me was Wealthy Affiliate, which you can even start for free.
The dream is possible. You just have to take action and get started!