Making money on the internet surprising hasn’t changed much for me in several of the niches I dabble in. I’m still making as much if not more than I was making last year, or the year before that. Google AdSense still produces the same CPM’s. Affiliate sales of services and products I promote are still converting very well. But that part depends on your content and method of presentation.
Direct Ad Sales Decline
One place I have seen a decline is in independent ad sales. There are a few possible reasons for this, but it might also be a general change of tactics.
- Many advertisers that used to buy ad spots on sites have opted to use tools like Google AdWords instead of testing less reliable CPA rates from a single source unless that source has already proved useful to them via a CPC campaign within a 3rd party source.
- Its probably becoming more important to convert than get that extra backlink to a product. Backlinks and branding is always going to be important but right now, simply staying afloat during hard times is more important than growing a business. Its not the time to take chances. Not to mention there are ways to build your backlinks without putting any money into it.
- Most direct advertisers don’t normally have the time or technical knowledge to install their own referral tracking software. Third party PPC campaigns provide those kind of analytics automatically along with various “goals” which can be setup to track conversions.
Opportunities By Slimmer Margin
Zac Johnson posted a couple articles about the economy this past week. One of the greatest points he makes in this article: It’s Not a Slowdown… It’s an Opportunity! is:
“There is always a new opportunity to make money around the corner. As online marketers, we have low overhead, minimal (if any) staff, can work out of our homes and whip out million dollar ideas with passion.”
Stocks (as he also posts about here: The Fall of the The Stock Market and Web 2.0!) are not a reflection of a good marketer and the potential making money online has to offer. A marketer can pick and choose what they promote. If company is offering something that is valuable, you can bet an entrepreneur in that niche is going to do their research and make affiliate income off of it.
Niche Experts Are The Winners
There aren’t any taxes on knowledge. The most successful people at online marketing are also experts in their niche. They probably became experts from experimenting and researching. Their expertise helps them when creating:
- Websites (blogs) around that niche in which they can push out affiliate products.
- Great sales pitch articles that teach as well as sell something
- Being active in the community you’re in and building your own community within that. Then increasing your own brand awareness from there to continue growth.
Online marketers feed off successful products. Products that are useful. Products that even in times of economic crisis, people will still try to find a way to buy. The margins are bit slimmer of what everyone spends their money on, but that’s no reason not to try and find what those products are. Again, being an expert in your field will help you to determine this.
So, what to do now?
- Fine tune your sales pitches.
- Track proper analytics so you’re putting your efforts in the right places on your own site.
- Provide quality information up front to help the buyer.
- Promote more than one quality product so you’re not putting all your eggs in one basket.
- Produce pillar content to build your brand and promote an awareness of your knowledge in your niche.
Kondratieff Waves – A Predictable Economy?
I learned about the Kondratieff theory years ago and only began thinking about it recently because of our current economic dive. If you’re at all concerned about the economy right now, its an interesting read. The Kondratieff theory is:
“A theory based on a study of nineteenth century price behavior which included wages, interest rates, raw material prices, foreign trade, bank deposits, and other data. He, like R.N. Elliott, Kondratieff was convinced that his studies of economic, social, and cultural life proved that a long term order of economic behavior existed and could be used for the purpose of anticipating future economic developments.” – Truthfinder
Kwaves.Com goes into much more detail about the history and timeline if you’re interested in learning more. Below is a graph which exemplifies the Kondratieff wave.
What do you think? Does this look like an accurate theory? Maybe its time to get the checkbook and invest? We’ll know who the winners are in 20 years.
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