Discover How This Newbie Made $33,000 As An Amazon Affiliate, In His Spare Time, Thanks To Niche Hacks

Filed in Success Stories by on June 14, 2015

Success on Amazon

You'll probably agree with me when I say...

Making money as an Amazon affiliate IS hard.

There's a lot of competition.

It's hard to find the buyer keywords and rank your sites.

The commission rate is low.

And it's hard to even pick a profitable niche in the first place.

So you're probably wondering how a newbie could possible make $33K from Amazon in less than a year?

Well here's the good news:

This is the first in a new series of posts where you'll meet some "NicheHacks Success Stories".

Members of the NH tribe who have gone on to see big success in online marketing and want to share how they did it to inspire you to do the same.

In this first post we're going to meet and get insights from someone who's made around $33,000 from Amazon's affiliate program in the past year (in his spare time whilst working a 9-5 job) partly inspired by a post he read on NicheHacks (more revealed below)

Just keep reading and you can replicate his success...

 

(P.S. If you'd like to download a free list of 1244 expensive Amazon products click here or the image below)

 

 

Introduction To Your First Success Story

Hey everyone! My name is Mike Bradford

I live in New York, work a full-time 9a-5p office job, and just started getting into niche sites over the past 18 months or so as a hobby but have made around $33,000 from them so far.

People can find out more about me on my site, or on Twitter.

Stuart asked me to participate by asking the following questions so here we go...

 

1. How did you get started with online marketing and how far have you come since then?

So this first time I ever heard about online marketing, believe it or not, was in 2010, when I somehow came across Pat Flynn's excellent Smart Passive Income Blog.

I read his stuff for a while, and then through SPI I found Spencer Haws over at Niche Pursuits, which is where I really started to get into the idea of building up a nice website to earn some passive income.

I launched my first site in early 2014, and over the past 12 months have done nearly $33,000 (more on this below) with all my sites combined, just with a couple of niche sites monetized exclusively with Amazon.

 

2. You mentioned to me that NicheHacks motivated you to get started with Amazon affiliate marketing and over the past year you've made around $33,000 from Amazon affiliate sales, can you share with us how you did it and importantly how others can emulate it?

Sure. I've been a reader of your site for a while now.

In particular, this epic series was truly inspiring for me.

I think the most important thing is to just focus and take action.  I picked a niche, settled on some keywords, and wrote some content around it.

Then I never stopped learning along the way.

I paid someone to re-write me reviews to make them longer, and better.

I bought a nice theme to make my site look legitimate.I started buying PBN links, and they worked: remarkably well.

Week by week, month by month, I kept improving, both my process and my site.

Now, when I build a new site (or a new money page on an existing site), I have a process already in place.

In that post you mention, I got over this in a lot more detail.

 

3. What was your first ever website or niche?

So I'm not going to reveal my sites or niches for obvious reasons (remember what happened to Spencer), but I'm in four niches that are not related to each other at all.

I have zero interest or passion in any of them, but some of them have groups of people that are passionate about the niche, while my other niches just contain products that people love to spend money on.

4. If you had to give 1 piece of advice to someone new to the online marketing world what would it be?

Well in regards to niche site building, my advice would be that it can take time to see some success, so don't give up too early!

I remember being six weeks into my site, the site looked like crap (I had no idea what I was doing), it was ranking on Page 5 on Google, and certainly wasn't earning any money.

I was ready to give up on it entirely.

But I kept working on the content, I started building more powerful links, and it started to get better.

These days, it can take up to six months to really see any progress with the Google sandbox, so have patience.

 

5. When choosing a niche follow passion or money?

As I mentioned above, I have zero passion in any of the niches I'm in, so for me, it's all about doing an objective analysis and finding the most profitable niches.

The only benefit I see to being passionate about the niche is that it will be much easier to write the content.

I guess that's part of the reason why I pay people to write mine 🙂

 

6. One of the most common questions I'm asked is "How do I get started?" What would you advise them?

The reason I love Amazon niche sites is because they're perfect for a beginner.

Zero in on a great market and keyword, register a domain, set up WordPress, and start writing.

Total costs: just the domain and hosting fees.

Now, that won't get you to Page 1 of the SERPs.

But it's not a terrible way to start.

Once you have some great content up on your site, then you can worry about getting a premium theme to make your site look professional, and then you can start acquiring PBN links, etc.

But my advice would be to make sure you do your research on your niche + keyword, and then just DO IT.

You will learn a lot along the way and get better at it.

 

7. If you lost everything (money, contacts, traffic, websites etc) and had to start over from scratch with a $100 budget what would your plan be?

Great question. My plan would look a lot like my previous answer.

I'd use as much of that $100 as possible on link building though.

Links still matter more than anything else when it comes to ranking niche sites.

 

8. Often friends and family don't "get" this whole online marketing thing. How do yours feel about it and how did they react when you first told them your plans?

Ha, that's a great question. The only one who knows about it is my wife, even today!

And she has no idea how it works, or how I got into it, but she's quite pleased with the results!

I think I may have mentioned it to my brother once in passing, and he showed no interest in it whatsoever.

It's so true what you say, so I don't even bother telling many people about it.

 

9. What would be your best tips for finding a profitable Amazon niche, creating the site and content, getting traffic and getting sales?

Personally, I'm not afraid of a little competition on Page 1 of the SERPs.

Surely, you want to see other niche sites there, but just because a Consumer Reports is in the top 3, doesn't mean you can't outrank them (I have).

So competition is important, but so is finding a group of products that are priced relatively high (at least $50), have a LOT of reviews on Amazon, and get good search volume.

As for content, I like to group 5-6 individual product reviews, and throw them all on the same page, so that it creates an epic review page of at least 4,000 words.

Google loves longer content.

I hate writing product reviews, so I pay someone to write them for me.

As for traffic, it all comes down to Google and ranking on Page 1; for that, PBNs still continue to work incredibly well.

 

10. You recently launched your blog http://www.nichesiteazon.com/what was the inspiration for starting this and what are your plans for it?

So I was going over my Amazon sales, and realize that it had been 12 months since I earned my first four-figure month, and that over those 12 months, I had done nearly $33,000 overall in sales.

I thought that would make a great story to tell, and so I spent like a week writing that very first post.

 

11. What are you currently working on and what are your plans for the future?

Since new sites are taking so long to rank now, I'm focusing on building out new money pages on existing domains.

For example, say I started a niche site around "survival gear", and my first money page was reviewing survival knives.

Instead of launching a brand new site, I would just create a separate money page about "flashlights", for example, since my domain already has some authority behind it.

But I do plan on launching a new niche site, hopefully part of a case study on the blog where I WILL reveal the site, and the niche.

So stay tuned.

Key Takeaways

Stuart here again. The key takeaways from this post are:

  • Pick a business model and take action, as Mike said earlier this post details all the different affiliate models you could ever need. Getting started is one of the hardest parts.
  • Learn as you go. You're not going to start as an expert and you'll never know everything. They key is to tackle problems as they come rather than put off doing anything because of problems that may arise in the future.
  • You don't have to love the niches you are in. It helps and I prefer to myself but Mike points out he doesn't love any of his niches but he does like making money so he works on them.
  • Don't give up too early. As Mike said it takes time to see success. This won't happen overnight and if you keep quitting you'll never get successful.
  • If Mike can go from newbie to making $33K in a year then why can't you? Him, myself, and you are no different. None of us were born an internet marketer. We got where we are by putting the time and hard work in

 

(P.S. If you'd like to download a free list of 1244 expensive Amazon products click here or the image below)

 

 

Wrapping Things Up

I hope this has inspired you to get out there and start taking action yourself.

In just 1 year Mike went from newbie to $33,000 from the Amazon affiliate program simply by taking action.

If he can do it then why can't you?

So have a quick think about what your plan of action to start making money is now and then leave a comment below to tell us and hold yourself accountable.

It might look something like this...

"I'm going to get into the survival niche. I'll create an Amazon review site around credit card sized wallet knives and I'm going to drive massive traffic from guest posting. Within 6 months I WILL be making money"

OK so comment below...

Nader Qudimat
Forged by the iron and cold steel, Nader takes his knowledge and hulk smashes it into his bodybuilding blog, FitFrek.

He is Stuart's right hand man as a VA, and is dedicated to make a empire online and he's doing so while studying for his MBA.
Nader Qudimat on FacebookNader Qudimat on GoogleNader Qudimat on InstagramNader Qudimat on PinterestNader Qudimat on Twitter

Comments (14)

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  1. Nader, Stuart,

    Thanks for featuring my story!

    Niche Hacks definitely played a big role in me being fortunate to have had this success so far.

    As you mention, it's all about taking action; that's where it starts. You will make mistakes, but you will learn, grown, and improve as you go on.

    When I started out, I had no idea what I was doing with my niche site. But I kept at it, and now it provides a nice little side, passive income for the most part.

    -Mike

  2. Truly inspirational.
    I tried getting into Amazon affiliates at one point, but simply gave up far too soon. Other ideas eventually replaced my old ones, until my Amazon journey was a thing of the past.

    Therefore, I suggest to anyone getting into Amazon affiliates (or any business, for that matter) to stick to one or two things at most as opposed to being all over the place. Put in all your energy and knowledge into the project, since a half-assed effort will only lead to half-assed results.

    And in the event you're not passionate enough about a niche, there's always the option to outsource the content just like Mike did. There's always a way to work around obstacles.

    Great job.

  3. James says:

    This is simply awesome and inspirational. Someone introduced me to nichehacks.com as a guide first to learn about niche sites and for a week now I have been reading without dropping any comment. I can't just turn away from this cos this success story was once a beginner. One thing I believe most in is taking action and not just reading. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Charlotte says:

    This post is brilliant - and shows if you don't give up, work hard and have patience, then you can make it.

    For myself and my brand new website, that is exactly what I aim to do - write quality content, build a blog I love, gain trust from my growing list, and then make it a business. In 12 months time I want a similar success story!

    • NicheHacks says:

      Charlotte just from what I've seen and heard from you in the group I believe you WILL be featured on the blog in 12 months (or less) time as a NH Success story!

  5. David Throop says:

    This is a great post and full of details which, for a newbie like myself can be a bit overwhelming. I've tried Amazon with a couple other sites, get a minuscule amount of clicks but no conversions yet.

    I love reading success stories such as these, they're truly inspiring, but lends a little discouragement with each month that I see clicks but not conversions. Stuart - is there an article you've written (yet) on improving conversions for Amazon affiliates?

    Thanks again for the great interview/article!

    • NicheHacks says:

      David, it starts with correct KW Research: http://nichehacks.com/amazon-keyword-research/

    • Hi David,

      Glad you enjoyed the post.

      What strategies have you tried so far to get traffic over to your Amazon sites?

      In terms of driving visitors from your site over to Amazon, I've found that pricing/comparison tables work extremely well. On my best performing site, I'm seeing a consistent 40% CTR.

      I've actually just published a post on my site covering this exact thing.

      Good luck.

      • NicheHacks says:

        40% CTR is really good Mike. Share that post here for anyone who wants to read it please.

  6. Thanks, Stuart.

    Here is the post where I go over exactly how I set up my sites, including how I lay out all my content, pricing tables, reviews, etc.

    http://www.nichesiteazon.com/content-niche-sites/

  7. This is truly inspiring. Thanks, Stuart, for always sharing case studies like this. Just when some of us are despairing and contemplating quitting, you come up with another and give us a kick in the ass.

    Thanks for all you do.

  8. 40% CTR is amazing! With my own Amazon affiliate site figures are nowhere close to yours. Heading over to read your post right away Mike.

    So far I haven't put in 100% in my amazon affiliate project. Your story got me inspired to delve in deeper into Amazon affiliate and set up a couple more sites.

    Thanks for featuring success stories Stuart, it makes for inspiring read!

  9. thomas says:

    I have two niche site and want to monetize them, great tips, and I will follow through on this right now, thanks.