Web 2.0 is one of those jargon terms that is thrown around by almost everyone online. No group are more fond of discussing the pros and cons of Web 2.0 technologies and websites than Internet marketers (I'm encompassing affiliate marketers, SEOs, and anyone else who tries to make money online in this group)
Now we could sit here all day and discuss what Web 2.0 is, but that won't be of any use in terms of actually making money. Instead, today we are looking at WHY affiliate marketers should use Web 2.0 sites, such as Squidoo and Hubpages. This blog post is the first part of a two-part miniseries - in part 2 I'm going to show you some of the most powerful "hidden" Web 2.0 strategies that you can use in order to get more links and boatloads of traffic.
If you're a member of AffiloBlueprint (and you've reached the SEO section) then you'll know that Web 2.0 websites play a vital role in link building and traffic generation. Okay, they aren't the only way of building links to your website, but if you can use Web 2.0 sites effectively then you can make some serious progress.
Before we look at the reasons why you should be using Web 2.0 sites in your affiliate marketing campaigns, here is a list of my favorite Web 2.0 sites:
- Ukritic (this is a new one, and actually allows you to directly place Clickbank links into your articles!)
There are more Web 2.0 sites out there, of course (I mean I haven't even begun to list the thousands of free blogging platforms you could use) but these are my top sites for affiliate marketers.
If you haven't already got accounts with the above, I suggest you go and sign up now. All of them are free to sign up, and it won't take you more than a few minutes for each.
Why Use Web 2.0 Sites?
1. Build REAL Backlinks
Web 2.0 sites are great for building real and effective backlinks to your main website. Although the PageRank of your Web 2.0 properties may not be very high (remember that the high PR figures you see quoted are for the homepage of a Web 2.0 site, not for the individual members' pages) you can use highly targeted anchor text. Contrast this with many article directories, which place a limit on the length of anchor text you can use.
Other benefits from using Web 2.0 sites to build backlinks are:
- Freedom to place links wherever you want on the page
- More links allowed when compared to article directories
- Sites such as Squidoo and Hubpages provide "link modules" which allow you to quickly build up lists of your links. This can save lots of time and allow you to link multiple Web 2.0 properties together.
2. Earn Residual Revenue
One thing that all of the websites I listed earlier have in common is revenue sharing. There are a huge number of Web 2.0 platforms that allow you to create content and then earn a split share of revenue generated by Google Adsense clicks, Amazon product sales, and even things such as eBay auction sales.
There are quite a few affiliate marketers who are against using revenue sharing Web 2.0 sites, as you don't get 100% of the earnings you generate. For example, you may only get to keep 60% of the profit you make through Adsense clicks. However, this is completely missing the point!
You want to use Web 2.0 sites to drive traffic and backlinks to your main website - if you can earn an extra $100 per week from revenue sharing then that is $100 more in your pocket for no additional work. Sure you would earn more from Adsense or Amazon Associates if you created self-hosted websites, but then you would have another bunch of websites that require backlinking and detailed management to work. Instead, by using the revenue sharing model of Web 2.0 sites you can generate a nice extra income that will continue to grow as you add more content (whilst also growing your backlinks and traffic)
Okay, you're unlikely to ever become rich from the money you make on Web 2.0 sites. However, every little bit helps - you could soon find that you are earning enough to pay for your web hosting, or enough to get cheap content on a website such as iWriter. I know of a few people who are making at least $500 per week just from the revenue sharing models of various Web 2.0 sites, and they are only working part time. The secret is that your earnings will continue to compound over time - you won't line your bank account overnight, but the amount you earn will steadily increase over time.
3. Generate Referral Traffic
My favorite reason why affiliates should use Web 2.0 sites is to generate referral traffic. If you haven't learned from the Google Panda and Penguin updates, it is foolish to rely solely on Google rankings to drive traffic to your website. By building a large empire of Web 2.0 sites you can generate lots of referral traffic that comes to your website independent of your main site's Google rankings.
Some of my own sites don't really rank well in Google (due to niche competition, lack of backlinks etc) However, these sites often receive a huge amount of traffic from Web 2.0 properties I set up for the purpose of driving visitors. Remember that sites such as Hubpages and Squidoo often have massive, targeted communities of users who browse those sites looking for information. These are potential visitors who could reach your site without you ever needing to rank in the search engines.
Web 2.0 referral traffic + a strong newsletter sequence = lots of cash, without Google or other search engines.
In part 2 of my Web 2.0 miniseries I will show you the EXACT methods I use to generate referral traffic from sites like Hubpages and Squidoo (including placement of links, calls to action and more) You can use this in conjunction with Mark's awesome AffiloBlueprint method to help take your affiliate marketing to the next level, and to help you make even more money.
So to recap, there are three main reasons why I strongly believe all affiliate marketers should use Web 2.0 websites:
- Firstly, it's a great way of building strong backlinks to your website that will help push you up the search engine rankings.
- Secondly, you can earn handy extra cash through revenue sharing (although this won't make you rich, the more Web 2.0 properties you make, the higher your earnings will be)
- Finally, Web 2.0 sites can bring you a lot of referral traffic that is totally independent of Google.
Keep an eye on the Affilorama blog for Part 2 of this miniseries where we look at the insider secrets of unleashing the power of Web 2.0. I'm going to share some of my favorite tips and tricks that you can use to make more money with Web 2.0.
If you liked this post, or if you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.
If you want a full "over the shoulder" guide to building profitable niche websites (as well as more Web 2.0 tips and tricks) check out Mark Ling's awesome new AffiloBlueprint 3.0 course. I've built a few sites using this method, and all I can say is that it works wonders. You even get a powerful Wordpress theme to help you build money-making affiliate sites easily. Check out AffiloBlueprint 3.0 for yourself here.