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Lifestyle blog - Need help getting traffic

vision_edge
Posts: 13
Joined: 04 Aug 10
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Lifestyle blog - Need help getting traffic

Hey Guys,

My name's Rob and I'm on about week 3 of my affiliate marketing venture. My goal is to build a "lifestyle" website about success, wealth, happiness, and pleasure to promote products as an affiliate.

I've had an interesting adventure trying to get started so far. Let me lay a few things out.
1. I'm using free webhosting from zymic.com
2. I am an affiliate for Clickbank, Amazon, AdSense, and CJ.
3. I "launched" my blog first on wordpress.org, then figured out they don't allow affiliate links and switched to blogger, then figured out the features are very limited, and finally realized I could host wordpress on my own host to use affiliate links.
4. I've posted links to my posts on digg.com with my blogger site, and now those links don't work (obviously). However google started to see my site before I switched.
5. Google Webmaster tools don't show my sites as being "crawled".
6. I have a separate host and separate site for the first product I'm trying to promote. I link to it from my lifestyle site, and I've also tried promoting it separately. The product site doesn't show as being crawled by google either.

LINKS:
Vision|Edge Lifestyle blog: http://www.visionedgelifestyle.info
clickbank product site: http://www.clickbankwealthformulanow.com

Questions:
1. Will I run into problems getting Google to crawl my lifestyle site after the switch from blogger? Any way to be proactive against it?
2. Based on your experiences and knowledge, is my lifestyle blog concept worth putting much time and effort into? Or is there another method out there that's similar that is "tried and true"?
3. Is it generally better to promote products from a single source, ie. my lifestyle blog, or better to promote products on their own with their own sites? Or both?
4. Would any experienced marketers care to peruse my sites listed above and offer any feedback for increasing SEO and conversion opportunities?

Thank you to anyone who spends some time to review this information. I'm insatiably excited about this project and aim to making a full-time living from it once I've learned enough and know how to achieve results. I've been following Eben Pagan and his circle of "friends" for over a year now, which is eventually how I ended up at affilorama. So far this seems to be a great community with a wealth of information for affiliate marketing.

PS. You may email me anytime at visionedgerh@gmail.com
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sonitin
Posts: 214
Joined: 26 Apr 07
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To answer your questions

Will I run into problems getting Google to crawl my lifestyle site after the switch from blogger? Any way to be proactive against it?

- Yes, if you don't do a 301 redirect. Please research on that.

2. Based on your experiences and knowledge, is my lifestyle blog concept worth putting much time and effort into? Or is there another method out there that's similar that is "tried and true"?
- I think Yes its every cent worth it.

3. Is it generally better to promote products from a single source, ie. my lifestyle blog, or better to promote products on their own with their own sites? Or both?
It depends on your end objective. I like to keep all related products on one site.

I had a quick look at your blog.
I suggest using permalinks, the color scheme isn't really good - it distracts from the content, make your affiliate links as nofollow, add some images to your articles, add lot more articles.
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vision_edge
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Joined: 04 Aug 10
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Hi Sonitin,

Thank you for your replies. I'll definitely do some research on a 301 redirect.

Could you elaborate a bit on why you think "its every cent worth it"?

My end objective is to provide high quality information and products that fit with the lifestyle of success, and ultimately make money.

What difference does using different permalinks make? And also which specific colors are you having trouble with?

Again, thank you for your input!
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PremiumMember
jmpruitt
Posts: 4723
Joined: 19 Jun 09
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Hi Vision, I agree with what sonitin said with a little more to add...

the life success niche is one of the most profitable. also you have a wide range of people interested so cross promotion of other niches is very easy opening up even more customers.

however you dont want to do all of that on one site. you want to target specific problems that people have with life success.

as marketers, we are not here to provide a product, we are here to provide a solution to a problem that the someone has. we happen to get paid when they buy that solution.


Gray text o n black with such a small font. I cant read much of it myself.

you are trying to go with a very general blog here and that is where there is a problem

when you said lifestyle success, i was thinking self help niche great. but you have a hodge podge of everything all thrown on one site. that doesnt really work.

you need a different site for life success, goal setting and that kind of stuff, the tv stuff should be on its own site, the make money online stuff should be on its own site..
each one of these are niche markets and you really need a site targeted to a specific group of customers.

then write a lot of articles about that topic. write at least 2/ week and post them on your blog then start building links to it.

permalinks will affect your seo. you need to optimize your pages for the keywords you want google to rank you forr in search results. your permalinks will be one step in that process. also, use the seo analysis tool in traffic travis it will help you know when your seo is all in place.
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Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 
sonitin
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I think James has replied to most of your original queries and to my short reply.. if you still have questions please post them :)
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vision_edge
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Joined: 04 Aug 10
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lol thanks paulturner... your value here is astronomical.

jmpruit,

Thank you for your detailed feedback.

I think my vision is not entirely understood, and from that point, our conversaion isn't as productive as it could be.

I understand you're saying there's too much of everything, and nothing real specific on my site. Please note that it very much is in a "work in progress" state and is not intended to be a final rendition on display.

My vision here is to include ALL THINGS that I believe are part of the successful lifestyle. This includes entertainment, self help, pleasure, financial success, etc.

My goal here is to build all the foundational layers of my site, which at this point it looks like it's all over the place, while at the same time learn how to generate traffic to it. By the time I've learned this, and while I've kept stacking the foundational layers, I will be ready for the next phase. Which is continuous additions to the different aspects, content, of the successful lifestyle. And products and promotions will be sprinkled in.

It sounds like you are saying to separate all my foundational layers into separate websites themselves. Is that correct?

Anyway, I hope this helps clarify my vision of what's to come.

As for the colors, how would white text on the dark background look? I can increase the font size too I'm sure. I'm still learning CSS :). Also, I have changed the reds to be a bit darker which helps some too.
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jmpruitt
Posts: 4723
Joined: 19 Jun 09
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You don't have to listen to my opinion Vision, and everything that I say is that. my opinion based on experience,and seeing a lot of people fail trying to do the same thing that you are doing. and having a few of those failures behind me.

I understand exactly what you are trying to do, and from experience, every site that I have seen who tries to do everything fails to succeed at anything.
I understand where you are trying to go but...

your vision doesn't matter. what you want doesnt matter. what your customers want and what the search engines want is all that matters and they both want a focused site not some hodgodge of mass information with no structure or direction.

you need to have a clear direction and navigation on your site. This could be accomplished several ways. a blog style site wont really work. you would need to set up a welcome page, categories for each group, and a logical siloing feature for your site. There is a lot of information on these in the free training here.

My personal experience is that you need a clear customer in mind and focus on that one customer and what they need. if you try to please everyone you wind up pleasing no one.

my best sites, i dont particularly like myself, but based on research, testing with my visitors, and tweaking until it worked, they do really well. my vision for those sites went out the window within the first month.

you cannot get rigid on what YOU want in this business, otherwise you doom yourself to failure.

what it comes down to is are you here to serve your customers or yourself? if you want a business that lasts, it better be the customer. How much research have you really done on what your customer base needs? who are your customers? from the way your site looks, you are just throwing everything out ther and hoping something works. it does not look like you have done any market research, just making a bunch of assumptions on what you think people may want.

once you answer those to yourself, you have to figure out how to sell your site to the people looking for that information. If you cannot sell people on your vision for your site, then it is all a waste of time. so far, you have not done that which is why you are not getting traffic.
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Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 
vision_edge
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This is sounding much better. I think you're able to see my vision and what is intended, but you have been candid with your criticism and that I love.

You're right, so far I have done limited research on the market and have gone from my own assumptions. I am trying to visualize customers like myself, and perhaps it's not effective.

Once again, thank you for your input. I was hoping you'd reply here after seeing your opinions elsewhere and seeing your site.

Next step - hardcore market research!
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PremiumMember
jmpruitt
Posts: 4723
Joined: 19 Jun 09
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Thats the ticket. i made the same mistake on my first few sites, so dont feel bad. Never assume that you know what your customers want. I recommend joining one or two forums. not only do you really get to know your customers that way, but if you take time to help them out with the little things, they will be willing to turn to you when they are looking for help with something bigger, and that will cost them money.
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Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 
vision_edge
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I feel lost.

I thought I was on the right track after taking your suggestions, and then I got a better hosting solution with email support, and now I feel stuck again.

I have lots of articles, and a few products, on my site, but I'm wondering if the site should be more focused for 1 specific product, or if something can work with multiple products on my site.

This would help me focus my market research a bit so I can just focus on getting traffic and making sales.

Any opinions about this? 1 product site vs multiple product site?
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robinjackman
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Great information sharing and thanks for that.
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vision_edge
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I feel like I'm much more on track now.

I have:
1. added many focused keywords for the make money online niche
2. Focused my front page around a single product launch
3. Have a working opt-in subscription box (looks like crap though, will need tweaking)
4. changed background color and text color of "posts" area. i would love some feedback on this change. how well can you read things now?
5. planning on adding a new "category" for reviewing the sponsored products. "Sponsor Reviews" is my first thought, however it seems like customers may view that in a less than positive manner. Perhaps I could call it something else like "Product Reviews", much simpler and less of a spotlight on the word "sponsors".
6. previous adsense space now filled with focused product ad
7. begun planning email campaign for my subscribers

I feel much better about this now. Hopefully I am on the right track and i'll start seeing some results soon.
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jmpruitt
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I dont focus on a specific product, rather I focus on a specific problem and offer
a couple of products that help to solve it. for example, in the self improvement niche, I have focused on building self esteem. i have a few self esteem courses, and building an opt in list where I promote more general related products.


anyway, enough about me, lets go back to your blog.

You dont want to be so salesy focus on helping people solve problems. look around this site. it is the perfect example of how to do the IM niche. you need to focus on helping people succeed, and offer products or services that will do that. however, you should focus on helping. especially in the im niche, ther is so much competition.

also, this is more of a personal preference, but I would not be posting other peoples articles so much. occassionally is fine, but you are building someone elses reputation in the niche, not your own. if you want to succeed in the make money online niche, you need to establish yourself as someone who knows a litte, but you DO NOT have to be an expert, and you should not pretend to be one.

When I started my blog and broke into the IM niche it was totally accidental. I was just sharing my personal experiences as I was learning. I had a few ads for training programs and services that I had used and talked about in my posts, and then i just wrote updates of my progress,, and what was going on with me, both personally and professionally and how it all tied in together. before long I had people following me without even promoting it except iin my sig file in the forums. it isn't my biggest money maker, (although it is quickly catching up and may soon become that once I build this list up.) but it is my most consistent money maker.

Over all I like the new layout better. Now the main thing is get your own content going on the site. Also, be more helpful share your own experiences. I know total newbies who have been online 2-3 months making 1-2k/ month just posting about what they are learning as they grow their niche sites.

You could do that too. you could use these articles from others as well, but use more of your own than others.
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Your Focus Determines Your Reality
 

This topic was started on Aug 04, 2010 and has been closed due to inactivity. If you want to discuss this topic further, please create a new forum topic.