Hey there friend, Becker here…
As promised here is another post from
one of the newest team members at Source
I'd like to introduce you to Dan Anderson.
While Jake from our last post is a master
of testing and client SEO, my man Dan here
works primarily in the affiliate side of things.
And boy does he work. Dan is currently
averaging $85,000+ a month just from
affiliate SEO, making him one of
THE guys to listen to right now…
And this is all part of where I want
Source Wave to be.
Unlike other SEO brands who bring in SEO
"analyst" who do not make a DIME actually
doing SEO, I am bringing in the best of the best
who make hundreds of thousands living and
breathing this stuff.
I try not to curse on here, but fudge theory and
screw anything less than pure cash earning
At the moment, for free on Source Wave, you
are getting lessons from 3 guys (Myself, Jake,
and Dan) who are bringing in well over 300k
a month combined in SEO.
Long story short, we are taking over the world
of SEO and our sole goal is to bring you along
and help you reap in the success in whatever
way you choose (client, affiliate, services etc)
Affiliate SEO Is DEAD!
Hey guys, Dan here and I'll start this off by introducing
myself and telling you what I've been up to.
I've been doing SEO off and on for a couple years now, and I've
done a variety of things with it, including clients and affiliate marketing.
Now I just do strictly affiliate stuff.
Don't get me wrong- clients are a great way to make money(especially if
you get high-end ones as emphasized by Becker).
I know lots of people who are successful at this.
I honestly just started having too much success with my own affiliate sites
and started getting rid of my clients which were not paying me very much money.
The good news is affiliate SEO is more alive than ever.
My income this year has been larger than ever- and increasing as the year goes on.
I'll give some basic pointers below.
But first, here's a screenshot of my biggest affiliate account showing the money I've earned in roughly the past 6 months:
I just took this screenshot in the middle of July (you can see the
year-to-date on the right for this one account), and all in all
I've made around $350k(including other aff accounts) so far
this year with my biggest month being just over $90k.
Around 8 months ago I was making about 10k/month so my
income has only been increasing as I rank more sites.
At the moment, this money comes from around 12 money sites.
Sorry it's hard to show the date of the screenshot for this particular
account without giving away my offers.
(If you need more proof ask Becker, he will probably send you
cat pictures as a response though)
I will be posting more here in the future so you guys will
have to tell me what you want to hear about.
Let me know what you are struggling with and what is preventing you
from making more money doing affiliate stuff or if you are just getting
started and need direction.
Do you want me to cover:
- Monetizing sites?
- More details on ranking?
- Keyword research?
- Finding expired domains?
- Outsourcing different aspects of it?
Just leave your ideas in the comments.
For now, I will not be showing any of my sites as I don't
really have any little dinky ones I am comfortable exposing
(I'm sure you can understand why).
Today I am just going to keep it simple with a few words on doing
affiliate stuff right now and also my opinion on the recent update.
Essential Tactics For 2014 Affiliate SEO
I wish I had some crazy secret to tell you, but I do not have any magic tricks.
I pick good keywords, build High PR links, and monetize the site.
Of course, there are plenty of details on all of these things that you need
to know- and that is what I'm here for- but just realize that you are
in the right place for SEO information and that people making money
from affiliate SEO are simply rinse-and-repeating this process
over and over in a way that is profitable.
I do not want to sound redundant on the blog but if you are struggling
with making money from SEO in general- it is probably because you
have not taken enough action.
I remember being a beginner and I did not know what the heck I
was doing but I just kept making more and more sites- I probably
made around 50 of them(all crap) before I actually got good and
started making a full time income from this.
You can read all day long but you will never have a full understanding
of it unless you are in the trenches every day busting your ass.
With that being said, some of the biggest things that allowed me to get
to this level were:
Investing In A Blog Network
There is nobody killing Google these days without a blog network. (Here
If you are short on a budget- just start small.
When I was starting out in SEO, I wasn't making a lot and would go
around getting some lower power PR 0s, 1s, and 2s and then an just
occasional 4 or 5.
You can easily make 10k/month in affiliate money off of a network that
costs 1-2k- heck you can even make more than that.
If you're a complete newbie that may seem like a lot to invest but I personally
would maybe invest $200-300 bucks at a time buying 3-4 sites when I had the money.
It may hurt in the beginning but it really is the only way to do SEO right now.
Promoting High-Paying Offers
AdSense is just not where it's at these days and I personally
do not mess around with Clickbank.
Neither do I know any successful search affiliates that do.
Back in the day I would also try to promote signups to dating sites for $1.
Needless to say this was never profitable.
You may have already heard of these sites but if not, just go to offervault.com
or odigger.com and start looking through all of the offers they have that pay
anywhere from 20 to several hundred dollars per sale
(There are a lot, heck there is a Russian Bride CPA offer that pays BIG!… If
only I could find some decent keywords for that =D )
Having A Linking System That Works Over And Over
Pretty much all I do for links is this:
-15-40 High PR Links(depending on the kw)
-100-200 Web 2.0s on the more competitive kws(definitely does help and is
necessary in some cases- but PR links are far more important)
Moving forward I am going to be trying some other things such as
building out full-blown social profiles for my sites- because sometimes
if you are going after a competitive keyword your site will just "stick" on page
2 even after all of your PBN links have been built- but I have not been using
this at all with my current sites.
I am sure these other extraneous signals are getting more important, though.
I used a lot of spun content for backlinking a lot of my current sites but am now
actually only using unique for all links(I think it is the safer way to go moving forward).
My anchor text profile usually looks like this:
1 exact match link for each keyword/page
4 almost-exact match links
30% Topic (related to the general niche but without including keywords)
30% Misc (Click here, website, etc.)
Of course, I try to put all my optimized anchor text on PR sites.
I do not use GSA or any types of links that are not removable on
money sites- in the current algorithm this is a death wish.
So there are some quick notes to help and reaffirm what you have
already seen here on Source Wave. Pretty basic stuff and nothing crazy.
In the next post, I will address a specific area in more detail.
In the meantime, I'm going to talk about the big topic of the day- the
new update and how it effects us.
You may have already read about this in this great post by Jake
I figured I would give my take on it as well.
The New Update: How Does It Affect Affiliates?
So sometime in the last few months Google
released a new update(I do not keep up with all
the update names as I just watch my sites) that is
causing an uproar in the SEO community.
Let's just call it the Google "Sandbox".
It is basically causing people to want to punch their
dog because now when you make a new site and
start hitting it with PR links, you tend to see stuff like
this(an inconsistent, small-ranging, back and forth dance- let's call
it the "midget" dance):
And this(sites "rockbottoming" and then coming back up):
In the past, these two "dances" were never really seen to
the extent that they are now- but they have appeared on
virtually every site I have created during the past few
months(I would say since March).
In addition to these weird dances, it is also taking longer
to rank a site now. I'm not sure exactly how long this new
timeframe will be to hit the #1 spot, but I don't expect it to
be much longer than 1-2 more months than normal.
The top Serpfox graph above is actually from a new site(~2 months old)
that is sitting around number 10 right now- if Serpfox had bigger report
history I would able to show you it coming up- but you can tell it's a new
site anyways because of how it is dropping down into the 300s and coming back up again.
So, the key points to know about the update are that:
-You will see weird dances as shown above
-It will likely take longer to rank your site than normal
Just keep these in mind as you read the rest of the article.
So What Is This Update Targeting Exactly?
While I have not figured out a way to get around this new
update- and I doubt anyone has- I can say that it is for sure
targeting at least one thing: DOMAIN AGE.
Any site I ranked before this new update, and took care of, stil
l looks like this(ranking with just pr links):
In fact, just as an aside, I ranked the above site with
about 20 pages of horrible spun content on the money
site (do not do this! ) because I was feeling lazy and
wanted to get a bunch of content on it.
The main page I wanted ranked and it hasn't changed since
this new update- and yes I have since replaced all the content
But I just say this to give you some encouragement that Google is
not the superpower you may think it is, and in fact, they may
actually be getting dumber at detecting SEO sites(read below).
But back to the main point- Google has changed nothing as
far as High PR links being the bread and butter of SEO right
They still signal authority and trust to Google and bump your rankings
up and up- exactly as before. Even with all these dances your new site
will get up to the top of the second page or on the third most of the time
within 2 months.
When the new update came out every single one of my establsihed sites stayed
right where they were- in fact, I only first noticed this "Sandbox" when I went
and made a new batch of money sites.
So Let's Talk About Age:
The "age" that is important to Google(and us) is not when your money site's domain
was registered- or even when it was first indexed- it is actually the time when you
start building powerful links to it.
I know this because I had around 5 domains laying around which I had registered
back in January, I had put content on them and indexed them each with 1 pr 0 link.
I didn't do anything else with them because I was lazy and had a lot more active sites to work on.
Then about 2 months ago I started building a variety of Higher PR links to them- these sites are
still "sandboxed" in the sense that they are slower to come up in rankings and they
do the midget dance shown in my graph
However, absolutely none of these domains (old registration/index date) do the
rockbottom dance- only the ones that were registered and indexed within the past
3 months do this.
I could go into details about why I'm sure these two dances are distinct thing
s that Google is doing on sites in separate situations(you can just read above to get
the gist of it) but it's not even important to know as far as making money,
so let's just get on with it…
All of this tells me that Google is really looking at age- and making the "authority building"
process for a site require a little more time.
And This is a VERY Good Sign- Because It Means…
It appears that Google still doesn't know how to do sh** about blog networks.
Instead, they are resorting to other what I would call "desperate" tactics to
discourage SEOs- namely just delaying the time it takes for a site to rank-
but also rockbottoming your site for a while which I suspect is
almost like a "fake penalty" made to discourage people.
If you have an old site that is still ranking- they still respond to pr
links in the exact same way.
If you use an expired domain as your money site- they still rank as before.
It is only when you use a brand new site that you encounter these weird
new debacles- and I'm confident that new sites will still rank to the
top 3 if you just wait it out.
And as with every update, people start running away from SEO left and right
leaving us with less competition.
In one of my niches there were some guys killing it with mass spam links, ranking
above me for anything they wanted- and one of the other updates Google released
around the same time(targeting spam as they periodically do) wiped them out-
I haven't seen them since.
Plus my sites ranking with just pr links moved up into their spots.
So just know that nothing has changed as far as PR links being the
core of SEO- it will likely just take a little longer than normal(if you are
using a brand new domain).
And of course, follow the on-page advice given in the last post on the
blog- and the fact that other signals(i.e. social) are likely more
important now and in the future(I am definitely going to get more into this myself).
With that in mind, here are the 2 crucial things to know about
handling your linking these days:
Before I was aware of this new "Sandbox" update I would see my sites
go down into the 300s and what would I do?
Remove all the optimized anchor text links on my PR sites- which is
the wrong move.
In the past if you had a site do this it meant it was over-optimized or had
another form of penalty- and removing the links
and then re-adding them in a less-optimized fashion would bring
back your rankings quickly.
However, if you see one of your sites go down this far now, and you remove
the links, your site will be harder to bring back up (tested this and confirmed).
So just completely expect this new "rockbottom" dance and do not react to it- I've
had sites down in the 300s for as much as 3 weeks and then they come right back on
page 2 like nothing happened(I left all the PR links in place).
Point #2: Dial-Back Your Link Velocity(Imperative For Brand New Domains)
In the past if I had a keyword that would rank with 20 high pr links I would
build about one link every other day and the site would rank in 2 months.
For any medium competition keyword that is worth money- you're not going
to rank that fast now with a brand new domain.
So there is no point building out your entire anchor text profile and using up all
of your links/PBN sites at that pace- this leaves you with a potentially unnatural
drop-off in your link velocity and your site is not going to rank that fast anyway.
What I am doing as a rule of thumb is cutting my standard link velocity in half-
so now I will have 20 links being built out over a period of 80 days-
rather than 40 days(1 link every 4 days).
Extra Tip: Use An Expired Domain As Your Money Site If Possible
If you are creating new sites and want to avoid most of these
issues- just get an expired domain from Godaddy auctions and
use that for your money site (not an already expired domain but
the regular auctions where you get it and it maintains its WHOIS
Now, a lot of people find doing this hard because using expired domains
that have already had natural link-building done on them can be fickle
with how they rank in your particular niche.
Sometimes you can build 5 pr links to them and they start ranking very highly-
then you build 5 more and their rankings disappear completely(this was the
case before and after this update- its just an expired domain thing).
However- realize that when it does work it works really well.
I have heard a lot of frustration on forums about this but have never
heard anyone address the real issue.
The Real Issue Is Something You Can't Entirely Diagnose
And Control(the link profile of the site)- The Solution Is To Go
Through A Quantity Of Domains.
I am sure Becker has a guide on here about finding good expired
domains to use as money sites, I won't go into every detail but
basically you are looking for a site with:
-Branded links/not about a specific topic(names of people, music bands, radio stations, abbreviated organizations, etc.)
-Lowish amount of links(typically 500-1500 in Majestic)
-All natural links(no spam)
Finding a site with the above metrics is pretty much all
you can do. At that point, you typically have to go through
about 5 of them until you get one that works.
I'm personally on the hunt for about 10 of them right now
because I know only 2 of them will probably work for a
massive keyword I'm salivating over.
However, keep in mind that buying a batch of branded
domains like this is not a waste of money because for any
sites that do not work as your money site- you just throw
them in your network and use them as a PBN site to build links from.
I give this last tip because I think it is becoming more of the
way to go in the future with this new update.
So that's it for now- mainly just a rant off the top of my head.
Tell me what you want to hear about in affiliate SEO in the comments below and
I will get into it in more detail in my next post
ALSO: Becker left a guide on the best place to buy, find,
and rent PR links. Hit tweet in box below to receive
this bonus content!