Know if your PC is infected with Viruses, Trojans or other Malware

August 18th, 2017 | Posted in Computers, Malware, Uncategorized

The reason why most computer malware are so deadly is because many users fail to recognize whether they have been infected or not. Had they detected the infection at an earlier stage, the damage caused could have been greatly reduced. As each virus is programmed differently, it becomes difficult to identify a virus outbreak. However, there are some general symptoms that make it easy to detect an infected computer. Here are some of them:-

1) Programs won’t start or crash suddenly: If some system programs like the task manager or registry editor have suddenly stopped working or crash randomly without any visible reason, it is more than likely that your computer has got some form of worm that is attaching itself to various programs and thus, corrupting their code. A virus modifying registry entries to prevent these programs from running could also cause this.

2) Unusual Network Traffic: If even after closing your browser and other applications that may use the internet, you see that your computer is still downloading or uploading anything, then your computer is possibly infected with some form of spyware that is either downloading other viruses to your computer or is uploading your private information to a remote computer. In case you use a wifi connection, it is also possible that your neighbors are using your network. If that indeed is the case, you need to make sure that wireless network is properly secured.

3) Internet Connection not available or is slow: If suddenly, your internet connection has stopped working or has become extermely slow, it is possible that a malware is the cause. However, problems with your internet service provider could also be the cause of such issues.

4) Annoying Popups or Redirection to Strange Websites: If there has been an increase in the number of annoying popups while browsing the internet or your web browser redirects you to a different website from the one you wanted to visit, a virus or adware might be the cause.

5) Computer won’t boot: If your computer has suddenly stopped booting, it is possible that some malware has modified your computer’s system files. In such a situation, re-installing or repairing your operating system might be the only solution.

6) Slow Computer: Some viruses are designed specifically for this purpose. Malware programmers achieve this by designing viruses that increase your CPU’s usage level to 100%. If on running the Task Manager, you find that your CPU’s usage is constantly at 100% level, a malware might be the cause.

7) Programs start automatically: Some viruses and adware automatically start strange programs on your computer in order to show unwanted advertisements or simply to frustrate users.

8) Unusual File Associations: Some viruses change .exe or other file associations which prevents these files from opening. Some viruses also do this to automatically start themselves when a file of a particular type is started.

9) Security Software Disabled: Most malware disable antiviruses and firewalls to prevent themselves from being detected. If only a single software stops working, it might be a specific software failure issue. If it is a general trend and almost every security software is facing this issue, a virus infection is most likely.

10) Weird Behaviour: If your computer automatically starts sending emails or opens strange applications randomly or does things different from its “normal” behaviour, your computer is most likely compromised by malware.

Most malware infections can however be avoided by using a powerful antivirus software and following some best security practices.


Effective Tips To Choose An Effective Website Development Professional

August 16th, 2017 | Posted in Uncategorized, Web Design, Web Development, Webmasters

The experienced web development company is going to have a really important role in making the brand name of a company more visible and increasing online reputation. Brand success on the internet does rely a lot on the experience of the web developer. Business managers from all around realize the importance of website development and try to find those companies that can actually bring in the best results for clients.

If you look on the internet, you will quickly realize the fact that there are dozens of web design firms that look great and that you can choose from. Locating one that you can trust is not easy. You will always need to consider the following in order to find an experienced website development Sydney professional.

Receptiveness

Contrary to what you may think right now, the most important fact when choosing the company is how receptive it is. Most of the web developers these days are capable of delivering the work that you need but just those that are highly receptive are going to be able to actually understand what you need.

As an extra tip that is connected to this topic, try to avoid those firms that delay replies, especially before a contract is signed. This is just a sign that long term responsiveness is not going to be what you actually need.

Is There An Advisor On Staff?

Those companies that do offer the best possible web development service will always have an advisor that is capable of understanding requirements and that will advise clients about changes that may be necessary for a site to be more effective. A web developer that does take the time to analyze the wishes of the client and that does recommend some modifications based on past experience is always going to be preferred and should be considered.

Previous Projects

You have to be sure that you analyze the previous projects that were done by the considered development company. That will show you exactly what quality can be offered. If possible, get in touch with past clients. See how work went and see if there were problems you need to know about.

Talking With The Actual Developer

In most situations the person that you talk with from a considered company is not actually the web developer that will get the job done for you. That is definitely not great. You do want to be able to get in touch with the web development team so that you can actually end up faced with a clear understanding of who the work is done by.

Consider Legal Aspects

This is the last thing that should be considered as it is really important. Ask who will own the website code. That counts because it will highlight dependence on the considered firm. If you do not own the website code, you will be forced to keep coming back to the firm whenever a change is needed. If you do own the site code, you can make changes and work with other professionals whenever you want to switch firms.


3 Cloud Storage Services that are Perfect for Any Virtual Business

August 14th, 2017 | Posted in Computers and Technology, Uncategorized

Get the best cloud storage technology for your virtual business

Are you a start-up that’s generating documents and files at a rapid rate? Here, we explore some of the best cloud storage services for virtual business owners.

One of the main benefits of operating a virtual business is that you can keep your overhead costs incredibly low when compared to an office-based business. However, to ensure your employees can work productively, benefit from the best technology and access data efficiently, you need to invest in the right cloud storage package.

Below are 3 cloud storage services you should consider:

Box

 Box enables you to store all your data online and access it from any device in any location. Currently, you can also store up to 5GB, which is ideal for virtual businesses that use mostly Word and Excel documents. However, businesses that regularly use files that take up much more memory like PDF docs or photo files like TIFFs may find this limit too small. Fortunately, it is possible to upgrade to a higher memory limit and larger file-size upload limit for a fee.

A faster way to check all your tasks

The Box’s Virtual Data Room allows workers to keep up-to-date with new document uploads and edits, which enables them to check who is doing what without having to waste time sending e-mails and waiting for responses. This is even faster – and more efficient – than asking someone how a project is progressing and then having to listen to a long-winded answer!

Carbonite

The Carbonite Server Backup facility allows a virtual business to back up all of their data. If they suffer any data loss or downtime, they can restore their data without any fuss. Carbonite’s mission is to ensure that virtual businesses can benefit from simple, hassle-free restore processes by allowing them to back up their data and access it as easily as possible.

Consider the Pro version for the most secure encryption technology

The Carbonite Pro version automatically sends files to a cloud network and encrypts them with Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology. This version also continues to restore files after you stop working, while still enabling you to access them at any time.

OpenDrive

OpenDrive is another popular cloud storage system that allows virtual business owners to use an innovative cloud management system. OpenDrive provides virtual private networks and backs up computer files that have been linked to an account. Businesses can sync files effortlessly and access their data whenever they need to.

With effective online backup in sophisticated art data-centres, businesses can keep their data secure with state-of-the-art technology. Share all your files with an online office suite and user management system so that all of your workers can instantly access and share new data and information.

Cloud storage can take a lot of weight off your shoulders

Performing your own back up and data restore can take up a great deal of time and resources, which is why it pays to use a professional cloud storage provider that provides the best facilities and latest technology.


5 Innovative Cloud Applications for Busy Entrepreneurs

August 12th, 2017 | Posted in Computers and Technology, Uncategorized

The working world is a very different place to what it was ten or even five years ago. Over four million people choose to work from home, making cloud applications a must-have item for the small business owner.

Cloud-based apps ensure you’re fully connected when you’re on the road or grabbing a coffee with a client. Gone are the days of carrying around a hefty Filofax and stack of business cards. All you need nowadays is a smartphone and wifi connection. An estimated ninety per cent of internet users worldwide are already using the cloud for a variety of business uses.

We’ve curated the best five cloud applications for busy entrepreneurs who are looking to streamline their processes. Read on to find out which ones could suit your business.

CRM

Salesforce: Salesforce offers eight different customer management applications. The simple, easy to user interface streamlines customer details, making it easy to access history and other information. The data can be accessed from a variety of devices and on a choice of operating systems including Linux, Android, OSX and Windows.

You don’t need to download any hardware or software and video training is offered, so you can start working with Salesforce straight away.

Salesboom: You really have nothing to lose with Salesboom, as it offers a no obligation seven day free trial. Salesboom works with small, medium and large enterprises managing online lead management, customer service, support service and sales force automation. It works on a wide range of operating systems including Windows, Android, Apple iOS and OSX.

Finance

Sage One: Choose from three different Sage One cloudware services, including Cashbook, Accounts and Payroll. Sage One Cashbook is the ideal solution for entrepreneurs, helping you manage your accounts and taxes efficiently. Sage One Accounts is perfect for smaller businesses that may not have a dedicated accounts team, but still need a trusted solution for account management. Sage One Payroll is great for small and medium businesses to gain greater ownership of their pay roll system, but who may not have the resources to employ a pay roll department.

All Sage One systems are HMRC compliant, so you can have peace of mind that you’re doing everything by the book.

Outright: There are two different Outright solutions: Plus and Standard. Already over 100,000 people are using Outright to manage their accounts. Outright supports more than 4,000 credit cards and banks as well as eBay, PayPal, Freshbooks, Shoeboxed and Harvest. Both versions of Outright offer a free trial.

Conferencing

GoToMeeting: GoToMeeting is part of the GoTo series of packages that also offers GoToWebinar and GoToTraining.

GoToMeeting offers high definition video conferencing, enabling your employees to collaborate on projects from around the world or hold client meetings all without leaving the office.

You have the flexibility of recording any meetings and the innovative ‘Show My Screen’ feature allows users to pass control of keyboard and mouse over to correspondents, for speedy collaboration.

The flat fee pricing structure means GoToMeeting is easy to budget for, making it an integral part of your business.

Communications

Skype: There are seven different Skype packages available, including the free service, Unlimited Single Country, Unlimited Europe and Unlimited World. Choose the package to suit you based on your client needs and where you see your business growing.

Skype can be used on a smart TV, mobile phone, tablet or computer and lets you see the body language and facial expressions of the person you are talking to. Sometimes that can be more telling than the words they speak!

Storage

Box: Box offers four different options: Starter, Personal, Enterprise and Business. You can access your files, photos and any other data from your choice of device, including smartphone or laptop. Over ten million people trust Box to keep their files safe.

The Business and Enterprise solutions allow you to create and share folders across devices, so you can work on documents with colleagues and not have to worry about whose device you are saving your files too.

There’s no denying that life as an entrepreneur is hard. However, we are fortunate to live in an era where there are apps and programmes at our disposal to help us grow our businesses.

New apps and technology to make our lives easier are released daily, many of them with free trials. Make sure you give your business the best chance of success by taking advantage of these trial periods so you can find the best apps for your business.


Hands-On with Push Button SEO for WordPress

August 10th, 2017 | Posted in SEO, Uncategorized

One of the coolest thing about the WordPress platform is the huge number of plugins available to make your job easier. From spam protection through to SEO (and everything inbetween) there is bound to be either a free or paid plugin available. In fact, SEO plugins are some of the most popular WordPress plugins out there. If you’ve been using WordPress for a while then you will probably have tried a few different SEO plugins – some are bad, some are good, and some are even better.

In today’s Affilorama blog post I’m going to be giving you a hands on look at one of the newest SEO plugins available. It’s called ‘Push Button SEO‘, and has been developed by a guy called Brian Johnson. What I’ll be doing in this blog post is showing you some of the different features of Push Button SEO. I’ve installed the plugin on one of my personal WordPress blogs, and deactivated any other SEO plugins I had setup previously.

At-a-glance SEO analysis

My favorite feature of Push Button SEO is it’s very simple graphical representation of how well your posts are optimized for on page SEO. You can enter the main keyword you are targeting for your post or page, and then see how well your content has been optimized for that particular keyword. This is very handy, as it means you don’t have to crunch any numbers

Let’s see an example of this in action. I’ve got a post on my blog that is targeting the keyword “gold investment guidelines”. So what I do is enter this keyword into the “Primary Keyword” field of Push Button SEO, and then I press “analyze”:

As you can see, Push Button SEO then returns a graphical representation of my on-page SEO for this post. I’ve got an orange bar that is half full; this tells me that there’s quite a bit of room for improvement here. But what if I want to get more in-depth information? To get Push Button SEO’s full page report I simply click the “Report” tab.

Even more graphical representations here in the in-depth report, which is once again useful for quickly informing you as to what needs work. I can easily see that my URL is matched properly (this is because my post is /gold-investment-guidelines – an exact match for the keyword “gold investment guidelines”)

My META Title, page headings (h1, h2, h3 tags) and internal linking are all good. My META description and outbound links are letting the page down, according to Push Button SEO. A good META description will encourage visitors to click through to my website from the search engine results, and having outbound links optimized for anchor text gives your page more credibility and weight with Google.

This kind of graphical analysis really does make proper on-page SEO much more simple and accessible. In my humble opinion, a lot of people are put off doing proper SEO because they find it confusing. With this plugin, there really is no excuse.

Suggestions, suggestions, suggestions

Take another look at that screenshot above. Beneath the fancy colored bars are a list of suggestions for simple SEO improvements. This is usually pretty simple stuff, but done correctly will have a good impact on your rankings and site optimization.

Embedding a video in your main content, for example, is always a good idea (especially if you embed a video from your own YouTube account, as this will increase your view count) as this will keep visitors on your page for longer. If you can keep people on your site for longer then your bounce rate will decrease, and a lower bounce rate will see your site being rewarded in the search engines.

Push Button SEO also offers a keyword suggestion function. This is a quick and easy way of finding additional keywords to target in your post. Having used this function quite a few times, I’ve got a feeling that the keyword suggestion tool is very similar to the free one you find on Ubersuggest.org – of course you do get the added convenience of it being built right into your WordPress editor window.

Mind your links

Internal linking is a very important part of proper on-site SEO. Building strong links throughout your website acts as a kind of glue that holds the whole thing together. You can also use internal linking to boost the ranking of a particular page (for example, if there is one page on your site that you really want to rank highly, build anchor text links from other pages to it) as well as for indexing new pages.

Push Button SEO has a useful internal linking function that allows you to assign certain pages as “SEO Targets” – pages that are the most important – and then quickly insert links when making new posts/pages. Here’s how to do it:

Let’s say that I want my “gold investment guidelines” page to become an SEO Target. From the “Links” tab of Push Button SEO, I just check the box that says “Assign as SEO Target”:

Now whenever I make or edit another post or page, I have a quick option to add an internal link to “gold investment guidelines” from within the post editor:

That’s a useful time saving feature, as you could create a list of a few pages you really want to rank well for and build lots of internal links to them. One little tip – make sure you vary the anchor text for your internal links, as this creates a more natural link profile.

You can also use Push Button SEO to add links to authority content. This is good SEO practice, as the search engines seem to reward websites that actively link to informative and authoritative pages – sometimes helping your competition out can actually be beneficial for yourself.

To do this, click the “Authority” tab and enter a keyword you want to find authority content links for (in this case I’ve searched “gold investment”)

You can preview the content snippets, and then add any authority links you choose with a simple mouse click. Adding authority content is a great way of boosting your website’s credibility, and adding to the overall user experience.

Content Curation 101

The final tab of Push Button SEO we have left to explore is the “Content” tab. From here you can pull in  images, videos, blog links, and news links and add them into your own posts. This kind of thing was made popular with Web 2.0 platforms such as Squidoo and Hubpages, where you could easily pull in other content and incorporate it into your own pages to add more value for readers.

To use the image function of Push Button SEO you will need a Flickr API key. Fortunately, you can apply for one of these for free, and all the details of how to do this are actually present in the plugin settings.


Make Handsome Profits With These 5 Craft Supplies Affiliate Programs

August 8th, 2017 | Posted in Affiliate Marketing Tips, Uncategorized

This is another suggestion from fellow Affilorama staff, Melissa. She is definitely on a roll, and having gone through the research for this niche, spot on in suggesting this niche. The handicrafts niche is timely, trending, and full of money-making potential. Why I hadn’t thought of doing a Niche of the Week on handicraft affiliate programs escapes me.

Meh. Just probably didn’t think anyone would make money off recommending a website to buy quilting patterns and such from.

Well, this should teach me not to underestimate any niche — because you can make money telling people where to buy craft supplies online.

I have a whole slew of statistics and numbers to show you. Let’s start with the State of the Craft Industry report by the Craft & Hobby Association:

  • 72% of crafters are women.
  • Their median age is between 35 and 44.
  • 42% have children.
  • Nearly half of crafters (47%) have 10 years of experience or more.

It makes sense, it really does. Just think of the rise of Etsy — a place for people to sell their handcrafted clothing, home decor, and art. (It’s also a marketplace for craft supplies). There are more than 20 million users on the site and 1.4 million active sellers. And the social media network Pinterest (think of it as a digital corkboard for design inspiration, craft tutorials, infographics, recipes and more) is huge, too, with its membership expected to hit 47 million people this year.

Plus, there has been a steady increase in fabric, craft and sewing supplies stores since 2008. According to Statista, the industry is now worth USD $4 billion.

I could go on and on, but I’ll let MisterArt.com sum it all up as to why the craft supplies niche is worth putting up a site for:

Craft Keywords

You’ll need to be creative to find good keywords to target in the craft supplies niche. There’s a good mixture of high-, mid-, and low-competition keywords in this niche, but you need to be specific to get your target market. Otherwise, you’ll run the risk of getting traffic that may be interested in getting craft supplies online, but are not really looking for the specific craft supplies you recommend.

Try for long-tail keywords. If the affiliate program you’ll join will allow you to use brand names as keywords, then look into them. Be as specific as possible. “Craft lace” will get you high monthly search values but high-competition keywords. “black craft strip lace” will get you lower search values, but also lower competition.

You don’t really need to focus much on buyer-intent keywords in this niche. Information keywords will get you plenty of traffic to your site just the same. You can target keywords by writing reviews on specific craft supplies, which works better for some projects than others. Or, you can write about your own creations and show how you did it, then list what materials you used with your affiliate links. This works much like those food blogs where blog owners share their recipes with a link here and there of the things they used. Tutorials for crafting, especially for costume-related projects, will carry you a long way, but it should be something you have some experience with or at least feel passionate about.

The Craft Affiliate Programs

This is yet another niche that does not have any affiliate programs through ClickBank. There are a handful of craft affiliate programs in the ClickBank Marketplace, but they belong to specific crafts, not the craft supplies niche.

So, as always, I went looking for craft supplies affiliate programs online. Now, these 5 options I think best represent the diversity of affiliate programs for this niche. But they are not the only ones, and they are not necessarily the only good options. There are plenty more out there, but the ones I’ve chosen for you are a great way to get your feet wet, so to speak, when starting on this niche.

CreateForLess.com

CreateForLess.com has all the crafting supplies you need for your scrapbooking. sewing, quilting, and beading projects. Ir has a section for kid’s crafts, too. Prices range from a few dollars to about $20 or so.

Affiliates receive a 7% commission for each sale, and bulk orders can get you bigger commissions. Affiliate cookies last for 45 days and you need only apply through Commission Junction to promote CreateForLess.com.


Shopping Cart Affiliate Programs: Not Just for the Shop Owners

August 6th, 2017 | Posted in Affiliate Marketing Tips, Uncategorized

It feels at times like I’ve covered all the niches and sub-niches there are, but something catches my attention, or in this case, someone says it outright, and voilà! Another niche to look into and write about.

Such is the case for this week’s Niche of the Week.

I was staring at a blank Word doc, thinking about what to write for the coming week’s NOTW, when another Affilorama staff member, Melissa, bless her, says to me: Have you done a feature on shopping cart affiliate programs? (Editor’s note: Hi folks! I’m Melissa.)

I hadn’t, but here it is now. Grin.

Shopping carts aren’t just the carts we push around at the store. They also include the electronic setups where the items we want to buy from an online store are placed until we “check out” and pay. Shopping carts are essential if you want to sell anything online, making them a crucial e-commerce tool.

E-commerce covers business-to-business marketing, online shopping and online marketplaces. It is a multimillion-dollar industry that continues to grow year after year. It’s easier than ever for someone to set up an online shop and start selling. You don’t even need a significant amount of startup capital thanks to dropshipping.

This has given rise to various e-commerce platforms that offer shopping carts, buy now buttons, store hosting, and various tracking for inventory and sales — in short, everything you need to set up an online store.

If you already run a successful online shop, or you’ve always wanted to run one, you can use these affiliate programs to boost your income.

Keywords: All About Shopping Carts

There’s a decent amount of competition in this niche, as seen in the Competition column in our keyword research results. The obvious target keywords are “shopping cart,” “shopping cart software,” and the like. All of them have high monthly search values alongside equally high competition.

Keywords in these niche are mostly keywords with buyer intent: “best shopping cart,” “ecommerce packages,” and “get shopping cart.” You’ll also see interest in “free” keywords, like “free shopping cart.” They have good monthly search values, but there’s not so many of them in this niche compared to others. Probably because there aren’t that many free shopping carts available.

You’re going to need to dig a bit deeper to get some viable keywords in this niche. Ubersuggest.org can give you good variations. However, you should really consider related keywords that you can write about in blog posts and articles, like “setting up your online store,” “successful online business.” or “what you need for your online store.” These are keywords that are related to the general e-commerce niche, but you can write an article about them that includes and refers to shopping carts. They will also help establish you as an expert, leading your readers to trust you.

Shopping Cart Affiliate Programs

As always, I checked on ClickBank’s Marketplace first before searching online. There were no shopping cart affiliate programs. However, I did come across an interesting WordPress theme that will turn your site to an e-commerce website. It’s related to what I’m looking for, but not related enough to include here.

So, I went online yet again to look for shopping cart affiliate programs. Some of the good ones re as follows :

Shopping Cart Depot

Shopping Cart Depot offers a whole slew of services that helps online store owners run their businesses. The shopping carts are designed to help you sell not just physical goods but also services and digital products. That means the site has tools for recurring billing and subscriptions, as well as inventory management.

The affiliate program pays affiliates 10% commission on all referred customers. Just sign up on Shopping Cart Depot’s affiliate page to join.

E-junkie

Some of you may have heard of E-junkie: It’s an affiliate network similar to ClickBank. You can sign up as an affiliate and promote the products on the network.

Like ClickBank, the site offer e-commerce solutions such as shopping carts and buy now buttons. You can promote E-junkie and get 20% recurring commission for up to one year of the referred user’s membership.

X-Cart

X-Cart provides small and large businesses alike with e-commerce solutions ranging from an SEO-friendly catalog, to a newsletter feature for marketing. It’s like a one-stop shop for entrepreneurs looking for a good e-commerce package.

X-Cart manages its own affiliate network and pays affiliates 15% recurring commission for each customer referred that signs up for the program.

Shopify

Shopify is a popular e-commerce provider. On top of shopping carts, the site offers store design templates, online marketing tools (including a Buy on Facebook feature), web hosting, analytics, and a lot more.

Shopify affiliates can earn money two ways: first, you can opt for a 20% recurring commission for each customer you refer who signs up for the service. That’s 20% of the bill — including transactions. That’s more than $35 per month for each customer. The alternative is an upfront payment of 200% of the customer’s subscription fee, or up to $358 per sale.

CS-Cart provides a comprehensive shopping cart package, including an eBay add-on and a cloud storage option. The site also offers multi-vendor software for the daring entrepreneurs who want to create their own marketplaces.

BlueSnap manages CS-Cart’s affiliate program. After signing up with BlueSnap, you can start promoting CS-Cart and earn 15% for each license purchased through your affiliate link.

Shopping for Links

Link building is challenging, but it’s a crucial step in getting traffic to your site. Knowing the various link building methods, and having a link building strategy in place helps a lot in transitioning from site building to traffic generation. Make sure to have at least a rough draft of your plan before you build the site so that when the time comes for building links, you won’t get stuck.

Content Strategy

Long gone are the days when an e-commerce store could just stick up some product descriptions and call it done. If you want your online store to thrive, you need to think about content — even before you start thinking about link building.

Content strategy is about planning and managing the content you publish on your site. You can’t just sit down and write something when the mood strikes you. If you want successful content that turns readers into loyal customers, then you need to do proper research on your topic, be creative on how you present your content , and publish regularly. You can do blog posts, videos, and even infographics related to trends in your niche, shopping guides to help people select products, information about sales promotions, and of course, information about shopping carts and e-commerce software. Then, you can spread your content via email newsletters and social media to help get the word out and encourage people to share links back to your site.

Link Indexing

This is an oft-forgotten link building method, probably because you don’t really have to do it often. You can gather the backlinks you’ve created, and after a certain point, run them through sites link Pingler.com and get them all indexed.

Don’t let any good backlinks you’ve made sit and wait to get indexed. You can help speed up the process, which means you might see changes in your search engine results sooner than later.

Press Releases

Businesses often have special offers to help increase sales. They also have product launches, and other sales events. You can write press releases sharing these information, with a link going back to your site. These backlinks have an advantage in that they’ll bring consumers eager to buy right to your site.

Shopping Cart Affiliate Programs: In the Bag or Back on the Shelf?

Shopping cart affiliate programs go in the bag. Definitely! The commission might not seem a lot, but e-commerce packages usually costs hundreds of dollars a year — and sometimes more than $100 a month! A 10% commission for a $300 package gets you $30. Some of the commission are recurring, too, so you earn as long as the member you referred is subscribed to the service. Give your customers some good resources to help them thrive and you’ll have commissions rolling in for a while.

You have to watch out for the competition though. Be ready with your link building and marketing strategies. Having a solid content strategy in place is a must: High-quality, creative content can get users to your site, and get them to keep coming back.

I would recommend this niche to people new to affiliate marketing, but I would suggest they build a site that focuses on e-commerce as a whole. There’s only a few truly great shopping cart affiliate programs you can promote, and you can only write so much about them. I would include some web hosting affiliate programs too, and maybe some email marketing affiliate programs as well. These are all related to creating an online shop.

But I would start small by focusing on any of these affiliate programs, then add more later on.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s Niche of the Week! Please share it using the Share buttons below.

Would you go into the shopping cart or e-commerce niche? Are there any niches you think are better than this? Leave a comment and let us know!

Affiloblueprint includes a link building strategy to help you get more traffic to your site. Check it out!


Play To Earn: Online Game Affiliate Programs

August 4th, 2017 | Posted in Affiliate Marketing Tips, Uncategorized

For this week’s Niche of the Week, I am going back to something I love to do online. Something I wish I have a lot of time to do: play online games.

I love RPG games, and I also like a fair share of casual games. I wouldn’t say I’m a “gamer,” but I do like some enough to buy them. So, while playing the new Sims 4, I thought to myself, is there any way to earn money from playing games?

Of course you can. I’ve covered this before when I did that post on Diablo III. But I’m looking at casual games, those games that don’t require any serious commitment and don’t have any solid community. Like those games on Miniclip.com.

Casual games are typically simple games, usually made through Flash or Shockwave. BigFishGames.com wrote on its blog back in March that around 150 million Americans engage in casual games.This statistic translates to high revenue for the mobile gaming industry. In fact, the mobile gaming industry earned an estimated $25 billion in 2015.

There’s definitely money in this niche, but how easy is it to tap into this market?

Tricky Keywords

Yes, that’s right. Keywords in the online gaming niche are tricky. You can target “online games,” even “free online games,” and get good traffic. But these are people looking to play, not necessarily pay.

This is the first challenge you’ll need to overcome in the online games niche: targeting the right keywords. I would probably use specific keywords referring to games. Like “missing objects online game” or “buy missing objects online game.” You can check out Ubersuggest.org for variations, but go for the more detailed or long-tail keywords. They will bring less traffic, but at least you know you’re targeting the right gamers for your site.

You can try using the name of the game itself, but be sure to check with the creators or merchant first to make sure they allow their affiliates to do this.

Online Games Affiliate Programs

ClickBank’s Marketplace has a lot of affiliate programs on strategy guides and guides to various games, similar to the WOW strategy guides that Mark promoted on his WOW site a few years back.

Not what I’m looking for, unfortunately. I’m looking for gaming sites that have an affiliate program. So, I visited various online gaming sites to see which ones deliver in that regard.

Big Fish Games

The creator of popular games like Peggle and Criminal Minds, Big Fish Games has been around since 2002. The company has successfully transitioned from PC games to mobile games, and now has over 450 mobile games and a whopping 3,500 PC games.

The Big Fish affiliate program offers affiliates real-time reporting, content delivery tools and 70 percent commission for each game purchased through their affiliates.

R2Games

If you prefer strategy and MMORPG, then you’ll love R2Games. The site has plenty of strategy and adventure RPGs, mixed in with a couple of the usual casual game genres.

The program offers 35 percent commission per sale. Signing up as an R2Games affiliate is easy. Just fill out the form on the affiliates page.

FlyOrDie.com

Despite the novel website name, FlyorDie.com offers its subscribers the usual array of board and dash games. You can play for free on the site, but subscribing as a Premium member removes the annoying ads. You also get to join game tournaments.

As an affiliate, you will enjoy a 30 percent commission for each sale. Their affiliate program is through RegNow.

Playrix

The games in Playrix are similar to Big Fish Games, and like Big Fish Games, it has games for computers and mobile devices.

There is no mention of how much commission affiliates earn, but it’s probably within the same range as FlyorDie.com, as they are both in the RegNow network.

Get Players to Your Site

And now we come to the challenging task of link building and inbound marketing. This, like content creation, can be outsourced to professionals. For a fee. If you have the resources, then go ahead and outsource. Still, make sure you have at least a basic understanding of how SEO, link-building and marketing work so that you will be able to monitor the link-building work being done on your site.

Outsourcing or not, make sure to have a link building strategy in place. You can hand this over to the person who will do the link building for you. At the very least, you have a guide to refer to when it’s time to drive traffic to your site.

Blog and Forum Commenting

This particular method is time consuming, but the effects are long-term, making the effort well worth it. There are plenty of gaming forums you can frequent to interact with fellow gamers and offer recommendations.

It’s a great place to learn about the online gaming niche, too. You can find our what games have a lot of followers, and which keywords are frequently used in relation to specific games.

Link Indexing

This is important to link building, but is often overlooked. You’ll be tracking the links you’ll be making, so might as well make sure they are indexed too, by submitting them to sites like Pingler.com.

Content Strategy

You would think that having a site about online games, you won’t need to bother much with content. But you do, because there’s plenty to know about a game. Like a good strategy on how to get past a difficult level, for one thing. A review of a new game is something gamers frequently look out for, too.

Content strategy is about having a game plan for your site’s content, from research until the content is published on your site. Having a game plan gives you time to think about the kind of content to present on your site in between updates.

Online Games Affiliate Programs: Child’s Play?

With all that competition, the online games niche is definitely no child’s play. This is a niche that requires careful planning and strategy. All niches do, but all the more for this niche because: one, there’s plenty of gaming sites there that will most likely have similar content as yours. So you need to be creative on the content you will publish on your site. Two, you need to be smart with link building and how you drive traffic to your site. Don’t just bring people into the site, bring people that are interesting in playing and subscribing to games.

So, no, this niche is no child’s play. The commission you’ll get are good. But if you’re looking something more substantial than a few dollars a sale, then this is not the niche for you.

But if you have a site about games or gaming, and have not monetized it, then take your pick from the above. It’s never too late to start earning from your website.

I hope you enjoy this week’s Niche of the Week!

Found some great online games affiliate info here? Share your findings. 🙂

Would you be interested in going into this niche? Are there any niches you want featured here? Just leave a comment and let me know!

Want to start your own affiliate site? Affiloblueprint shows you how. Step by step!


Work That Playlist: MP3 Download Affiliate Programs You Can Earn From

August 2nd, 2017 | Posted in Affiliate Marketing Tips, Uncategorized

This Niche of the Week post is the result of a research I did to answer a question that was posted on the Comments section of my post on music affiliate programs : Are there profitable partner programs for free mp3 downloads?

Right off the bat, I wanted to say there aren’t, except for ones that I already featured on that same post. But I wanted to be sure so I went looking for affiliate programs that deal in free MP3 downloads.

MP3 Music Download Keywords

I found that there are good keywords that you can target in this niche. Most are in the low to medium competition. The only problem is a large number are “free” music download keywords.

If you try make the same keywords into keywords with buyer intent, the competition shoots up. One way to get around this is to target the name of the specific song, album, or music artist. The competition will still be high, though.

MP3 Download Affiliate Program

The ClickBank Marketplace has hundreds of products belonging to several different niches. That certainly includes MP3 downloads, but not MP3 music downloads. Instead, you’ll find downloads for hypnosis, lullabies, and affirmations — pretty much everything except current music.

I came across the following while looking at affiliate programs in the MP3 download niche: danosongs.com. For only USD $49.95, you can download 77 MP3 tracks that you can use as background music for your videos, presentation or web apps.

This is not the MP3 download I had in mind for this week’s niche, but it is an MP3 product. If you have a site about content creation, then you can promote this product on it and earn 30% commission for each sale.

Another product I came across in my research is RelaxingMusicSource.com. This is another site that offers MP3 downloads, but for relaxing music. The affiliate program is offered through ClickBank, though I am not able to locate it in the Marketplace. Affiliates receive a 70% commission for every sale.

There are so many relaxing music/hypnosis affiliate programs in ClickBank that it might be worth featuring them in another post. For now, let’s check out the few MP3 download affiliate programs I was able to find.

eMusic

I’ve featured eMusic before in my post on music affiliate programs. eMusic works the same as iTunes, allowing you to browse through the music collection and download as you please. The only difference is that eMusic is a paid membership where you get a specific number of music downloads a month, depending on the type of subscription you have.

The affiliate program has not changed. It is still through Commission Junction, with a commission of USD $6 for every new trial member you refer.

iTunes

Possibly the most popular music download website right now, iTunes has an extensive collection of popular music that can be downloaded for a fee.

I’ve covered iTunes too, in the same music affiliate program post. The terms cover minimum threshold but no mention of how much affiliates earn for each referral. Affiliates are welcome to sign up to the program through the affiliate page.

Be Loud, Be Heard

Building links to your site and getting traffic to it is no easy feat. It’s a necessary, formidable task. Having a few notes on what you’ll do when you reach that point in your affiliate marketing project can make the entire process a little easier.

To that end, here are some methods I think are worth pursuing for a website on this niche:

Social Media Marketing

I like to think of social media marketing as a modern take on “word-of-mouth” advertising, where people comment on or pass around information about a product. But in the digital age, instead of everything being spoken, it’s posted on public pages where everyone can read it. So even months or years later, those endorsements can still be found.

Thousands, even millions, of people check social sites like Facebook and Twitter daily. Make sure to tap into this traffic source by creating a Facebook page or Twitter account for your site. Build followers and page likes. Share interesting articles from within your niche, or your site’s own articles.

YouTube Marketing

YouTube is the biggest, most popular video-sharing site right now. It’s a great website to promote MP3 download websites. You can create teasers of the tracks that can be downloaded from the MP3 site you’re promoting, lasting about 30 seconds to a minute. Then place your affiliate link, or a link back to your site, in the video’s description box.

It sounds easy, but there’s a catch here. YouTube is tough on protecting copyright, so make sure to get permission from the vendor or merchant before doing this. Yes, there are people who can get away with uploading entire songs (complete with incorrect lyrics! ) on YouTube, but these accounts are eventually caught and closed.

Make sure to cover your bases, and think of other ways to promote on YouTube too: like sharing a quick, entertaining video on what music is for you, talking about where you get your music from, or creating a playlist of songs for a specific mood or theme.

Reverse Engineering

This method is great for catching up with a competitor website and leveling the playing field, so to speak. Use an SEO application like Traffic Travis or AffiloTools to find the websites where your competitors have built their backlinks. Then, build backlinks on the same sites.

This doesn’t necessarily mean your site will be ahead of the competition (you still have to worry about on-page optimization, social signals, and other factors), but it does help even it out. And it can get you ahead if you are able to add quality links to the ones you’ve already created.

MP3 Download Affiliate Programs: Save Or Delete Permanently?

This is not a niche that I would build a site for. The commissions I could earn do not justify the work involved in setting up the site, driving traffic to it, etc. There’s also that problem with keywords: there are not a lot of keywords with buyer intent in this niche. Still, if this is something that you’re interested in and want to try, go ahead. I suggest you have a good content and link building strategy written down before you go at it.

If you already have a music or music-related site that you want to monetize, the products on this niche are a perfect way to branch out.

I hope you found this week’s Niche of the Week useful in your research. Please share this post using any of the Share buttons below!

I love reading comments, and respond to them whenever I can. Comments, suggestions… leave them below!


10 Alternatives to Clickbank

July 30th, 2017 | Posted in Affiliate Marketing Tips

If you’ve listened to much of my training, when it comes to showing you how to find affiliate products to promote quite often I personally refer to the Clickbank Marketplace. The reason I do this is because Clickbank approves virtually everyone (unless you are from Nigeria or some other country outside their approval zones), and they have an amazing selection of products to promote with high commissions.

The other reasons are because most of the money that I make comes from Clickbank and also because they are extremely reliable with their on time payments, and I’ve built up a good relationship with them over the years.

However, in this blog post I want to share with you a list of other alternatives for you to consider as I don’t want my own bias to prevent you from seeing that there is a whole world of affiliate offers to promote outside of Clickbank.

I think joining all 10 of these will be overkill, but billions of dollars in transactions are being made every year through these other networks, and many have fantastic offers that are not available at clickbank.

I have several affiliate millionaire friends who earn the majority of their income outside of Clickbank, and you may find some of these networks very useful to join.

In no particular order, here they are:

1. Rakuten LinkShare

Rakuten LinkShare offers affiliate programs from big brands, but you have to apply to promote them and it’s not always easy to get accepted. Best for those with some experience already.

​ Rakuten LinkShare has a lot of physical products to promote, including some big-brands. It’s not the fastest to sign-up to, or the simplest to navigate, but there’s a lot of helpful guidance as you go.

You have to sign-up with each individual advertiser before you can promote their products. This draws out the process, but also demonstrates that higher-quality is important here.

One of LinkShare’s strengths is its deep-linking feature. You can read more about what deep linking is here.

You can find more information comparing Rakuten LinkShare and Clickbank here.

2. CJ Affiliate by Conversant

CJ Affiliate by Conversant is easy to use and full of useful stats. There’s a large variety of product types to promote. 

CJ Affiliate is like Rakuten Linkshare in that you have to apply to individual advertisers, which takes more time than the instant acceptance of many other networks (such as ClickBank).

However, it’s usually not too difficult to get accepted by most advertisers here; you just have to be a legitimate marketer with ethical practices.

It’s easy to filter the products here by category, serviceable area, language, currency etc… This makes it very convenient for you to find the best products to promote quickly and painlessly.

CJ Affiliate has a very large variety of products to promote. If you’d like to know exactly how to use CJ Affiliate by Conversant, check out the guide in our free lessons here.

Learn more about how CJ Affiliate compares to ClickBank here.

3. ShareASale

ShareASale is another well-known affiliate network with a lot of product options.

It’s simple and easy to sign up for ShareASale, but it’s not the most straightforward platform for navigating the available features. Search for merchants using the “Merchants” icon at the top, then “Search for Merchants”. You can then filter via keyword, category, or a mixture of information in an advanced search.

It’s not easy to get started joining affiliate programs. You have to verify that you own your website before you can join any of them, which involves placing a key in your website’s header tag.

A bonus with ShareASale is being able to add products to your “basket,” which means you can save information about merchants or products that you’d like to apply for, review, or export later on.

There is quite a wide variety of both physical and digital products on this network. Find out more about how ShareASale directly compares to ClickBank here.

4. Market Health

Market Health is best for affiliates looking to promote physical products in health-related niches. Newbie friendly. 

Market Health is an affiliate network with a broad variety of health products. Some of the categories include general health, weight loss, colon health, men’s health, cosmetics, health and beauty, skin care, sports nutrition and others.

It’s super easy to sign up, and the site is extremely straightforward to use. You can browse by product category, you can look at their featured products or you can sort by country/language.​

If your website topic is anything to do with the health niche, then this could be a really great network for you to use.

Check out the full lesson for more information on Market Health and how it compares to ClickBank.

5. Neverblue

Neverblue is a CPA network with a great reputation, but it can be difficult to get accepted. 

Neverblue is a very well respected CPA, or cost-per-action, network. This basically means you get a commission when people go and perform an action, such as signing up or entering details into a form.

Neverblue connects people who want traffic and leads with those who can direct it their way. Neverblue has an incredible reputation. Everywhere I’ve looked, people are very happy with the support and communication, as well as the commissions and integrity.

The trickiest thing about Neverblue is getting accepted. The site is very careful about the potential for fraud and will do a check on everyone before accepting them. In saying that, if you’ve got nothing to hide, just be honest and you’ll be fine.

The site offers a wide variety of opportunities to choose from, and it’s known for paying correctly and on time.

Find out more about how Neverblue compares to ClickBank here.

6. Affiliate.com

Another CPA network, less prominent than Neverblue but still reputable. 

Affiliate.com tends to prefer intermediate to advanced affiliates, so if you don’t have much experience yet you’d probably be best to try one of the other networks first.

To sign up with the site, you have to fill out an affiliate application, which the site will review within 2 business days. You’ll get a call to confirm all of your information and be assigned to an affiliate manager.

At this point in time, Affiliate.com claims almost 2,000 live campaigns in a variety of categories, so there’s definitely a large selection to choose from.

Check out the free lesson to see how Affiliate.com directly compares to ClickBank.

7. JVZoo

A digital product network like Clickbank.

JVZoo is very similar to Clickbank in that it’s a network for affiliates and sellers based around digital products. It’s easy to navigate, and, just like with Clickbank, you can check out the marketplace to get an idea of the products you could promote before you’ve even signed up.

There are a lot of less-than-ideal affiliate programs on this network however. Some have terrible grammar mistakes or poorly-executed sales pages.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t succeed with JVZoo, it just means you have to carefully filter through the products before you decide to promote something on your site. This is true of any network, but especially important here.

I like how Nathaniel explains it in his review, “Can You Make Money on JVZoo?,” so check that out if you’d like more information about this network.

Go to the full lesson to see how JVZoo directly compares to ClickBank.

8. PeerFly

A high-quality CPA network, which prides itself on being custom-built.

Peerfly is another CPA affiliate network, once again with high-quality offers and a great reputation, but you do have to apply and be approved.

This verification process is a really good thing, even if it takes a little more time and effort. It means that if you do get accepted, you’re in good hands.

The cool thing about PeerFly is that the software is custom built, so you’re unlikely to experience downtime or other hosting related issues.

You can apply to be a publisher from anywhere in the world. PeerFly has a convenient payment options. You can even opt for weekly payments, so you won’t be waiting around to get your commissions. The site offers PayPal, Payoneer, check, wire, or ACH transfers if you live in the US.

You can also access your stats on your phone via the mobile stats page.

Find more information about how PeerFly directly compares to ClickBank here.

9. Amazon Associates

An enormous variety of products to promote, but low commissions.

Everyone has heard of Amazon. It’s a big player in the e-tail and internet marketing games, and as an affiliate you can take advantage of this huge network.

This is probably one of the broadest networks that you could promote from, with something for nearly any niche. It’s also extremely easy and straightforward to start promoting products.

The well-known name of Amazon means that there’s a strong level of trust associated with buying from this network. This works in your favour when you promote the products here.

The downside here is that the commission rate is tiny, you have a much smaller window in which to convince people to buy (only 24 hours) and it’s hard to get approved by the network. Ideally, you need a website which already has a healthy level of traffic to get accepted, and to make it worth your while.

You can find more information or sign up for Amazon Associates here.

Check out the full lesson to see more about how Amazon Associates compares to ClickBank.

10. eBay Partner Network

Huge variety of products, but you need a website with quality traffic to succeed.

eBay Partner Network is a very similar story to the Amazon Associates network. There’s a huge amount of products available for you to promote, and you get the added advantage of eBay’s credibility: People know that it’s safe to buy from eBay.

It’s hard to get accepted into this network unless you have a website with a lot of quality traffic, which is fair enough, as you need that quality traffic to earn a decent commission here anyway.

You can learn more about the commissions you can earn from the eBay Partner network here.

Check out the full lesson to learn more about how the eBay Partner Network directly compares to ClickBank.

So what should I choose?

Depending on your individual marketing requirements, you could choose one or more of these networks to promote from.

If you’re looking for digital products, Clickbank is actually one of the best networks. It has high commission percentages and a wide variety of products to choose from, many of which are good quality.

If you haven’t found what you’re looking for with Clickbank previously, I’d try using the gravity filter to find the best niche and products for you before giving up. You can find a guide on how to get the most from Clickbank here.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for physical products, rather than the digital products of Clickbank, the best options are:

If none of the above are calling to you, or you just have more of an interest in CPA marketing, the best two networks to apply for are Neverblue and PeerFly.