The Ultimate Make Money Online Cheatsheet

Here I've put together all my best tips for making money online into one big cheatsheet.

A) It takes time.  My ultimate advice has always been that you need to stick at it for years.  Not weeks, not months but years.  My rule of thumb: 5-10 years of obscurity before you figure out enough stuff and learn enough to make it work.

B) Social Media isn't actually that important.  I have a twitter account, I have an instagram account etc etc.  They don't have many followers.  I don't think I've made $1 from them.  I've made thousands without social media.

C) You do need a website.  Social sites come and go.  Money making methods come and go.  Websites will always exist.  So you need one.  Think of a website as your homebase.  This isn't mine.  This is just my diary.  I've built a homebase that is going on 10 years old – and as you can imagine it's fucking valuable.

D) Diversify.  Don't put all your eggs in the one basket.  If you're making 100% of your income from one affiliate program and it suddenly dies (has happened to me before) you're fucked.  Spread things out.  Target multiple affiliate programs, have a backup website etc.  However…

E) Focus is important.  Don't jump from one thing to another every week after if nots working.  Read point A again.  It takes time!  Stick at it.

F) Ignore all “make money at home” scams.  Never pay for a product on Clickbank.  Never pay for anything on the warrior forum.  They are all scams.  the people who are actually making money don't tell people exactly how they do it.  Stop buying that crap.  Notice how I never actually tell you the websites I own??!!

G) Stop working for cents.  Don't join sites that promise to pay you a few cents to click a link or read an email.  Or the sites that pay you $1 for writing hundreds of words etc.  You will never ever succeed using these methods.

H) Invest in opportunities that have huge upside.  Last month I dropped around 10k on domain names.  Not lots just two quite valuable names.  These are investments.  If I build a site on these domains and it works out, I could be in for a 100K+ return.    Invest in yourself.  Don't save money away.  Be a risk taker and make a move.

I) Be Unique.  Working on an affiliate offer that nobody else is doing is 10 times easier than trying to promote something like Hostgator or Bluhost where everybody is promoting it.  Look for opportunities which are new and haven't been exploited by the stupid masses.

J) Spend 90% of your time making.  10% communicating.  Most people talk 90% of the time.  Trying to network, emailing, setting up deals etc.  I don't do that.  I spend 95% of my time actually building stuff.  And I occasionally check my email.   I make enough to hire an assistant to read my email for me.  I don't answer phone calls – my friends msg me.  Just focus on building.

K) Take Time Off.  You don't need to work 18 hour days.  You don't need to be “busy” all the time.  The people who run around looking “busy” actually achieve very little.  I get 8 hours of sleep, I look after myself and take days off every week.  I still launched a new product last week, got a fuck load of press and attention and still managed to take the weekend off.

L) Sell Your Company.  Two sides to this.  If you sell your company too early, you could leave money on the table.  But don't be afraid to cut and run sometimes.  But this shouldn't be a yearly thing.  This is an occasional practice.    Selling your company could mean having to start from scratch.  So think carefully about this.  Of course selling gives you cash.  Which is nice.

M) Search Engines still rule.  SEO doesnt.  I havent built backlinks for years.  But somehow you managed to find this page.  If you create good content + add time then I've found that search engines will show you some love.  The SEO guys will get all hot and flustered and tell me i'm wrong.  However, they work for $$.  I make $$$$$.  Because…

N) Good Content is King.  I'm not a great writer.  But I can write content that is better than 99% of similar content written by some indian guy working for $1 an hour.  I'm always going to be better than that.  I don't be afraid to create controversy.  Always write honestly.    And don't copy content – it doesn't work.  If you can't write spend 10 years writing a blog.  I did that.

O) It's Not Easy.  Obviously or everybody would be doing it.  A lot of people make money online.  Most people don't however.  But there are lots of opportunities.  It does take skill.

P) Learn to Design, or Code.  Or learn to design and code like me.  The combo is hugely valuable.  Whenever I think of an idea, the difference between you and me is that I can build it.  To me that is fucking incredible.  Being able to think of something, and then sitting down and 48 hours later, it exists.  Learn to code.  Then learn to design.  If you can make your code look pretty with design, people will give you money 🙂

Q) Experiment.  I bought bitcoin, I still trade forex using  copytrading.  I like experimenting with different ideas.  Most of the time I end up ahead.  You'll never know what will take off in a big way.  So be prepared to experiment with things like bitcoin.  But…. you're about 2 years too late to invest in bitcoin.  You have to be on the edge of ideas.

R) Build websites.  Build software.  Build apps.  Aka Build.  The money is in building and owning an asset.  Not writing pages on Squidoo etc.  There is no money in that.

S) There is no secret method.  There are however literally hundreds of thousands of different ways to make money online.  So its up to you to discover on your own through trial and error what works.  You won't find the answer on a blog like this.

T) Build a portfolio.  I think I own about 6 apps, 10 websites.  I don't know how many hundreds of domains I own.  But lots.  Although I recommend focusing on just one project to begin with, over time, when project number one is making $$$ each month, move onto project two etc.  Owning some domains is also a good way to store value.  I sell a lot of domains each year.

U) Outsource.  Once you are making $$$$,  hire someone to handle all the mundane tasks that require no creativity.  Automate as much as you can first.  Then all the stuff that can't be automated, outsource.  There are still countries where your dollar can hire someone on the cheap.

V) Having trouble.  Spend 30 minutes each day.   If you're not having success.  Spend 30 minutes each.  Each and every day.  Then once you've figured out what you were doing wrong you can ease off.  30 minutes each day will ensure that you are at least moving forward.  Most people give up after about 2 weeks of doing something.  Read point a again.  It takes years.  Can you spend 30 minutes for the next 2 years?  If not then you might as well stop reading.

October Update 2014

Ok, no I haven't died.  I've just been crazy busy.  And I always would rather work on the stuff that actually makes me cash than just write about it here.  Most people do the complete opposite.  They write about all the things they are going to do to make some cash, but never actually get anything done.

Income

My number one money maker – an authority site in the finance niche managed to pull in over $2.4k last month.  It usually does around $1k.  The crazy thing about this site is that it is 100% passive.  I set it up over a year ago and do nothing.  I don't build backlinks, I don't post to social media, I don't create new content.  If you create uber high quality content, that is unique then you can sit back and let the content do its thing.

I find it funny to see all the people struggling away on the various marketing forums, doing crazy amounts of work for a dollar or two here and there.  High, high quality is where its at.

Another site of mine, where I make money from PopCash, didn't do so well.  It's so unpredictable and lots of variables involved.  I went from making about $80 a day to $8 on that site.  But in the past it has gone down and gone back up again.  Like my other site, it's set and forget.  I might give it some love.  Just to keep it ticking over.  I still think PopCash is a great revenue maker and they continue to pay out on time every within 24 hours of a request.  They are awesome!

I didn't do much Forex trading and the one trade I did open lost me about $15.  That's the way it goes.  I still copytrade, which I believe is the best strategy and I'm up about 4% over the past couple of months.  I did Buy some Apple Stock through eToro which has gone up recently!  So I sold some of it.  I'm loving how easy it is to buy stocks through etoro.  I'm also going long on Apple.  $150 is my target and completely realistic in my opinion.

I've got another massive money maker in the pipeline.  It's a 100k return type  project.  I've spent a lot of cash on it, and it's basically what I've been working on (and haven't been blogging).  It's unique and I think will become hugely valuable.   It's going to be valuable because no one else is building something like it.  It's not in the IM niche.  It's not a content site or an authority site.  It's a completely different type of company.  This is my point people – you have to go against the grain and do what nobody else is doing.    Then making money just happens.

Expenses

Biggest expenses this month were clothes.  Which is a little shit.  But i'm tired of buying clothes that don't really fit or don't make me feel confident.  I'm now at a stage in my life, where I would rather buy a shirt for $300 that makes me look and feel amazing as opposed to shitty shirt worth $50 that sort of fits but i'm self conscious in.   Unfortunately Mr Porter, is ridiculously good at making you buy things.  There online shopping experience is top notch.  I feel a little better knowing I earn a fuck load of bonus frequent flyer points shopping their.  p.s – before making a big purchase, always buy it through your Frequent Flyer program.  Most programs have deals with all the big online retailers.

Second biggest expense was servers.  The problem with running a number of large sites is the large hosting bill.  It's still well within the 1k per month range so thats nice.  I've been putting all my new sites on DigitalOcean.  They are by far the best VPS provider out there.  Way better than Amazon or other cloud providers and all their servers run on super fast SSD drives.  Amazing performance and they start at a silly $5 per month!

Investments

I'm cash rich at the moment, mainly because over the past few months (bar this one), I have been uber frugal.  Most of my cash is just sitting in a high interest savings account which makes me a little uneasy.  It's too safe.  I would rather invest it. So i've been on the lookout for sites to buy or build.  Nothing took my fancy.  I might make a purchase this month.  I did buy some shares in a bank.  Apart from etoro shares, I don't usually buy stock.  I made an exception because I was a) cash rich, and b) I use this bank, they have an amazing product and customer experience, and they aren't American.  Which is pretty much what I look for in an investment.

So that is October.  I'll try and push some more blog posts out.  I've got some cool ideas.

Making Money with Shorte.st

For the past 24 hours, I've bmake money shortesteen playing around with a new way to make money – It's called Shorte.st and it's a link shortening service that pays.  It's similar to adf.ly but I've found the payout to much higher in the short period of time I've been using it.

Here's a Guide to Using Shorte.st

How Much Money will I Make?

All depends on the number of visitors you can send.  With these types of link shortening services, it works best if you have a lot of traffic.  You'll need 1000+ people to visit your short link to see revenue over $1.

What Type of Content/Sites Should I Use it On?

This will work on general sites that have a big audience. Not niche sites.  So think wallpaper, downloads, pretty lady type websites.  If you have a twitter account with a massive following, then posting these short links there would also work well.

When Are you Paid?

On the 10th of each month if your account balance is larger than $5.  Payouts happen automatically to your paypal or payoneer account.

How to Make Lots of Money with Shorte.st

Ok this is where it gets interesting.  If you figure out a way to get lots of people to click on a link – and I'll let you figure that one out – then you can really take things to the next level.  For example, if you are getting lots of people clicking through a link to see a picture of a pretty lady,   you can host that image on your own website and surround it with your own ads.  So not only will you get paid when people click the link to visit your site, you'll also earn when they land on your site.

Don’t Let Your Bitcoin Be Lazy: Invest It!

Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 11.47.02 amI'm not a fan of having large amounts of cash sitting around.  Some people believe Bitcoin is more like Gold or Silver then cash, and it should be sitting away in a vault somewhere.  But that is a risky investment strategy.  There is absolutely no guarantee the price of BTC will rise.  Just like cash, you shouldn't leave it sitting around.  Put it to work!

It's time for you to learn about how you can invest your bitcoin and start earning interest.  I've already earned a 60% return on BTC balance these past two month – unless you've also been investing your BTC, then your return over the past two months would have been in the low single digits (and possible zero).

Your Cheatsheet For Investing Bitcoins

  1. Grab yourself a BTCJam Account.  BTCJam is a Peer 2 Peer investment network.  borrowers can create listings and investors can choose to invest in individual projects, ventures, etc.   This means that people can borrow capital without needing to go through a bank.  These peer to peer networks have existed for a while with fiat currency.  But they are relatively new with BTC.  There are huge advantages to using bitcoin for a lending network.
  2. Start small.  One awesome advantage to BTCJam is there doesn't appear to be a minimum amount you need to invest.  That means you could invest as little as $0.01 in a listing.  If you're new to p2p lending then I recommend you start small.  Even just a few dollars.  This way you can get comfortable browsing through listings and picking the right people to invest in.
  3. Diversify.  Don't put all your cash into one listing.  p2p lending works best when you have a diverse portfolio.  Although as of yet, no one I have invested in has failed to make a repayment, I've factored in this risk.
  4. Invest only in A and B graded listings.  Investments on BTCJam are given a credit rating (A-E).  I use the filter tools to filter out any listings below a B grade.  This reduces the risk.
  5. Chose a range of long and short term listings to invest in.   Each listing has a term.  Some are 30 days, some are for much longer.  I choose to invest in a range of listings which feature various terms.  As BTCJam is quite new, I don't have enough data to figure out what is the best strategy for term length.  therefore I have a diverse portfolio.
  6. Be Smart.  Each listing has a grade and associated data to help you make an informed decision.  Due to the possible anonymous nature of Bitcoin, you can't expect every listing on BTCJam is going to deliver.  Therefore you need to use common sense.  Look at what your money is going to be invested in – is it just a pump and dump or is there a strong business case?  Does the borrower provide lots of details? Don't rush.
  7. Don't keep BTC uninvested on BTCJam.  Don't keep BTC just sitting in your btcjam account.  I recommend only transferring money into the network when you are ready to make an investment.  This is about risk management.  If anything happens to BTCJam you want your bitcoins to be somewhere else.
  8. Keep Reinvesting.  When a borrowers sends you a payout, use the payout to invest in something else.  Remember you can invest fractions of a bitcoin down to tiny amounts.  Keep your funds ticking over.

Have you been investing your bitcoin – make sure you let me know how you've been doing in the comments.  Remember, don't be a fool – put your cash to work!

Why You Shouldn’t Blog on Squidoo

I can't believe people are still slaving away writing articles on a website like Squidoo or Hubpages.  Here is why you shouldn't be and where you should be putting your valuable content instead.

Rubbish Payout

Some people have created hundreds of articles and spent god knows how many hours, yet they only make < $100 a month.  A month!  If you were to calculate your earnings per hour it would be well, well, below minimum wage.  In fact your probably working for a couple of cents per hour.    Your time is more valuable then your money.  Trust me.

You Can't Sell It

If a website of mine is making much money, I sell it.  It gives me cashflow to work on other projects.  When you post an article of squdioo – they own your content.  The only value it has is the ad revenue.  And if that dries up, you've got nothing.

You Have No Control

If the website your posting to (Squidoo, Hubpages etc) suddenly gets the big FU from Google, then basically you're screwed.  Furthermore, these websites can ban you at any time.

Cheat Sheet on What You Should Be Doing

  1. Build your own website.
  2. Your site probably won't rank within the first few months, and you'll probably want to give up.  This is where 99% of people fail.
  3. Keep adding new content – but it doesn't really matter how often.  I have a website which hasn't been updated in 6 months and it still brings in $700+ a month.  Every month.
  4. Use affiliate links.  It works and makes more money for less trafficked websites
  5. Don't worry about backlinks.  I posted an article on this site (which has no backlinks) and it made me $80 within an hour.  If you know how to write, if you know how to make a headline and if you know which topics to target, then you can do well without backlinks.  If you don't know how to do that write 500 posts and you'll soon figure it out.
  6. Stop working for cents!

PopCash Review: How I Made Over $2.5k

PopCash is a popunder advertising network that I've been using for the last little while to monetize some of the sites I own.  I wanted to share my experiences of using PopCash and how much I've been earning.

PopCash earnings

I don't use PopCash on all the websites I own.  For example, it wouldn't do well on a site like this.  But for say, entertainment sites, it would do really well.  One thing you need to know about popunder ads – you need to have a lot of traffic.  Luckily I do on some of my sites!

Approval and Setup

PopCash is by far the most responsive ad network i've come across.  I've never needed to contact support (because I've never had any issues) but they are extremely speedy when it comes to getting your domain approved.  Usually it takes just a couple of hours (if at all).  This means you can get started placing ads right away.

Ad Rates 

PopCash uses a dynamic bidding system.  Basically there is no set rate for your traffic.  It varies based on the location of your traffic and the quality.  It will fluctuate for day to day and depends obviously on advertiser demand.    I received around $2 for U.S traffic.  Some  days it is higher, some days it is lower.

I've tested PopCash against another popular popunder network and found that popcash pays around 20% more.  So far for my website, I have yet to find a monetization method that pays as well.

Payout

PopCash does pay and they always pay on time.  They say payouts happen within 7 days, but most of the time I receive my payout on the same day.  The minimum is just $10 and you don't need to wait 30 days or more.  You can cash out as soon as your account hits that amount.

You can request payouts to PayPal, Paxum or Payza.

In Conclusion…

If you have a website with lots of traffic and it's in the right niche (entertainment, wallpapers etc) then you should definitely try popcash.  Monetizing via other methods on these types of sites just don't make you as much cash.  PopCash is by far the best popunder network I've come across – they have the best rates in the industry, super fast payouts and a great backend.

You can join popcash here

2014 Challenge: Building an Authority Site

I already have one authority site, and it performs really well for both SEO and revenue. And now I want to build another. So I'm setting myself a simple challenge for 2014, to build an authority site.

Authority sites contain a large amount of content, which usually isn't focused on a very small niche. Instead it targets a larger audience and doesn't just rely on search traffic from Google. Authority sites will usually have large social followings and the site's content will be shared a lot through social media. Building an authority site takes months of work, and there will be a period at the beginning where it will seem as though there is no point to all the work. You keep posting content, and Google isn't showing you any love. But if you persevere, and manage to create a site with a good pagerank and search traffic, it will deliver revenue for years to come.

So here is my template for an authority site:

  • Niche – i'm choosing a general topic that I can easily write about: productivity.  I've written countless articles on this topic in the past and I can easily create more content on my own.
  • Content – I'll aim for the articles I write to be over 500 words each.  They'll also all contain an image, which will help them get shared on social networks.  I'm going to be producing content that I believe could go “viral”.
  • Frequency – I'm aiming to post 1 new article per day.  Anymore and I'll burn out.  Any less and I don't think I'll succeed.  I won't need to keep up this regimen after a few months where I can drop back to 1 post per week.  Google does prefer fresh content.
  • SEO – No backlink building.  I'll be linking to my site from existing properties I own, just so that visitors can discover my new website.    But that's pretty much all the off page SEO i'll be doing.  I'm going to do lots of internal linking (something which I've never done enough of in the past).
  • Monetization – Adsense.  I'm only going to add the adsense code when I start seeing a regular influx of traffic.  I don't bother adding ads on a site that isn't going to make at least $1 a day.  It's not worth the hassle otherwise.
  • Social – I'll try and build a large twitter following for the site.  I've always found this challenging and social is my weak spot.  I'm going to automate it as much as I can.
  • Design – I've gone for a premium wordpress theme which I know how to monetize.  I've seen it used on a friends site which generates 2k+ per month in adsense revenue.  I'm going to use the same ad placements (when I start getting traffic).
  • Hosting – I'm going to opt for some premium hosting, just so the site has some room to grow and I don't need to worry about moving it later on.  Therefore i'm putting it on Mediatemple.  MT is amazing hosting and much less spammy then Hostgator (which I also use).
  • Marketing/Advertising – I've got a couple of ideas.  I think I will try a couple of different forms of advertising and o some case studies.  But to begin with I want growth to be organic, and I don't want to spend money until I've got lots of content created.

So that's about it.    I'll keep you posted with a weekly update of how the site is progressing.

A Good Alternative to Zulutrade

I've been trading using the social trading platform, zulutrade for the last few months.   The one slight issue I have with Zulutrade are the robots.  Forex robots can work wonderfully for months and then suddenly start chewing through your cash.  If they did work consistently there would be a lot more millionaires in the world.

One excellent alternative to Zulutrade is etoro.

urleToro is a social trading platform that allows you to follow traders and automatically copy their trades.  The great thing about the platform is that you can autotrade with as little as $50.  This means, it's well within the reach of the new investor to follow a number of traders and diversify your portfolio.

There are also no robots on etoro as they use their own platform which doesn't allow it.

Furthermore etoro is huge.  It has by far the largest number of traders.  I'm looking forward to seeing how this platform grows over a number of years.  I think there is a lot of potential!