This post is my $0.02 about what I think about AdSense and Amazon Affiliate sites as a strategy for building out content.
When it comes to creating content for an authority site or niche blog, you have multiple options. But when starting out, what’s the strategy? What’s your end goal look like at the very beginning? This is the most important time period for your blog.
Some focus Amazon Affiliate review blog posts to fill up their site’s content. This can be very profitable. Others post information without selling, usually with the goal of building traffic for AdSense or email list growth so you can then create and sell products including affiliate ones. This is a longer-term approach.
Sure there is dropshipping, Amazon FBA, digital product creation, Clickbank, shareasale etc. etc. But the main thing today as far as niche sites are concerned (the way I see it) is AdSense and Amazon’s Affiliate program.
AdSense Growth Mentality Makes You Create Epic Content.
For my three authority niche site’s growth, I want to build a long-term authority presence. I want good content. I don’t want to shill out a bunch of review posts and be impersonal. I could use a quick buck, but that’s what freelancing is for. If I had the resources, I’d make a 4th blog – a pure review blog. But with my limited time and resources, I want 100% quality.
I like the idea of AdSense growth.
It scales better.
And in the future, when I have my own products, digital or physical, I can simply remove the ads and focus on no-ad quality content. That would be ideal.
The fact that AdSense is so dang passive is very, very attractive.
Affiliate marketing calls for epic content too, but sometimes it can feel disingenuine or salesy. Also, it’s a review site.
Review sites can make BANK. Look at 10beasts. Or outdoorgearlab. Or the countless others.
But… what are you trying to build?
Do you want to build something to sell it and make a profit?
Do you want to have a backup plan?
If you create epic content, you have a backup plan. You can create your own products or build a list and sell them other products as well as your own. You can come back and fix the keywords and improve the content and have yourself a nice asset online.
Why You Should Focus On Amazon Associates Program
If you create a ton of reviews and don’t provide awesome informational posts that speak out to a person’s non-product related problems, you can do well also, but it’s not the same. The personality I believe is what will last.
However, if you are building the blog to sell it and you want it to happen ASAP, maybe you don’t want to have your personality attached to your brand so much. In this case, maybe a review site would be better. And maybe you should focus on buyer intent traffic.
However, you can still create epic content and monetize via AdSense without having your face front and center. Or you can create a persona too if that’s your thing.
If you can get a blog up to $500 per month in sales via any method, that site is easily worth $10,000 to investors.
Why You Should Not Focus On Amazon Associates For Your Authority Blog (At First)
This is the route I am taking.
It’s a choice I had to make.
If I want to create review posts, I first need to get the quality informational content out there with backlinks. I really want to start creating review posts, so that’s motivation to get all the niche site course materials finished first. The followthrough is the most important part of any course.
However, in certain circumstances, it may make sense to link up an Amazon affiliate link within your informational content. It doesn’t make it a full-on commercial content piece, but if you’re talking about a recipe for example, and there is one tool you always use, I still use affiliate links in these circumstances.
For the kickoff of my niche authority blog projects, I am foregoing the review posts and am sticking to solution seeking informational content. That’s what Chris Lee’s course teaches. His RankXL niche site course has taught me a lot about keyword research and structuring niche blog sites I wouldn’t have known for a long time probably, otherwise. With this course, I am able to structure my site to be built for long term. With a properly structured site that is built to be monetized with Adsense, you give yourself options. I can then branch out into affiliate marketing and split content between review posts and informational posts that don’t sell anything. If you have traffic, enough traffic to make money through Adsense, then you can do anything with your site. That’s the end goal I am shooting for by not doing review posts at first.
The current strategy is content based on informational keywords. Not buyer intent keywords.
Buyer Intent Keywords v Informational Keywords
Why is this such a big deal?
Because the keywords you search for when starting your site matter. You’ll be reaching people with an entirely different priority in their online searching.
One group is looking to buy something.
The other group is looking to read and learn, not necessarily buy.
Because in the future I would like to take off the ads, I don’t want to put ads in the header. That would be too obtrusive. With the plugin, Ad Inserter, I’m able to place a couple non-intrusive ads on my content. I don’t think they look too bad. They actually look kind of nice when the ad colors correlate with mine (something you can optimize within your Google Adsense account). And for some reason, ever since I’ve put AdSense on my blog, my traffic has been growing every day. I haven’t researched that little phenomenon yet.
Content for SEO, Adsense, Product Creation, Review Blog Posts: What To Do!?
It’s important to pick one and go through to completion. Right now I’m lagging with everything because I have done everything. My digital product/ebook for the first suthority site is 60% done. It’s been 60% done for 4 months. Digital product creation has taken a backseat to keyword research, content creation and backlink outreach work.
I believe building a list and creating a product is equally as important. I just need to get my content structured properly and produced first. If I was the big caterpillar from the Wizard of Oz I might try to finish the book I’m halfway done with and produce my content at the same time, but I only have two hands. And almost 1 brain.
That’s all this blog post is.
An opinion piece on Adsense v Affiliate posts. No real value or knowledge bombs, but perhaps someone can get something out of this. If my opinions change I will come back and add to this all. But for now, this is it.
My goal for 2018 is to hit publish every day.
I have 3 sites and between the three, and my client’s site, I have my hands full. The only way to make forward progress is to force myself to publish every day.
Because of this goal, I may have to tone back the epicness of some posts. This site is not my main focus. The posts are not epic here yet, but I try to make epic posts for my main niche site. Every post on this blog will need to be revamped and relaunched at some point in the future when I can put more focus on Authority Growth.
My goal is to create epic content amongst my sites and still publish every day. I don’t want to lessen my quality. At first, it will be tough. I’ll need to write FASTER.
Although my goal is to create informational pieces, I will get into Amazon Review blog posts sooner than later. My inner blog posts that focus on single keywords and phrases will be review posts half the time.
Today I am posting this. Tomorrow will be a pillar post on my second niche blog. I don’t have a facebook page or anything connected to this site. I don’t promote Authority Growth posts or do anything besides documenting and blogging what I do on my other sites. I have about a million drafts because each time I have an idea I don’t let it go to waste. Evernote has all the others that aren’t already in my WordPress drafts.
Authority Growth is basically a diary right now.
A grown man’s online [marketing] diary.
So I will close out this side tangent with the original topic of this post…
Adsense or Amazon Affiliate content?
The answer is… both.
First comes quality non-review content. Amazon stuff will come after.
When should you activate and place Adsense on your site?
Right away is what I think.
If you really think it’ll piss off your readers, why not find out right away? Might as well build your audience around what you want to do. If they don’t like it they can go. Most won’t care as long as you provide quality content. And if the ads are subtle. That’s what I am seeing in my first 3 weeks after adding Adsense. The in-content ad so far is the only one that’s getting clicks, so I might use a sidebar in my posts as currently, I am doing center aligned no sidebar style blogging. The 3rd and final ad on all my content is an “after-content” ad and this one isn’t getting much traction as of yet, either. But I don’t care about any of that. My focus is on keyword research, backlinks and quality content creation. Nothing else. I even stopped my daily Instagram posting even though I was getting 300 plus likes and 30 or so comments of real engagement on my posts.