#ASW15 Day 1 Syed Balkhi and David Vogelpohl Optimize WordPress

#ASW15 Day 1 Syed Balkhi and David Vogelpohl

Syed Balkhi on How to Optimize WordPress like a Super Affiliate

Syed Balkhi on How to Optimize WordPress like a Super Affiliate

The first talk at Affiliate Marketing Summit West 2015 that I attended was by Syed Balkhi (Founder of WPBeginner) and David Vogelpohl (CEO of Clique Marketing), and the topic was How To Optimize WordPress Like a Super Affiliate.

One of the great things, but perhaps one of the drawbacks of Affiliate Marketing Summit West 2015, was the depth and breadth of presentations by industry leaders. Trying to pack so much content into a couple of days inevitably leads to multiple, interesting sessions occurring concurrently. As I could only be in one place at once, I had to be very discerning, and choose where to be. Luckily, for those who attended the conference, all the presentations will be online within a couple of weeks. An archive will allow us to peruse the presentations that we missed.

I decided that I wanted to see Syed and David. I subscribe to Syed’s newsletter, WP Beginners, and was very interested on how they could aid me in my quest to become a Super Affiliate.

Luckily, their presentation, like my progress in the industry, was beginning at first principles.

The first topic that they covered was choosing a theme for your web site – they suggested selecting from StudioPress, Woo Themes or App Themes. They encouraged , and this is very important, that you buy a theme from a company that specializes in theme development. There are a plethora of free themes that can be downloaded, and although they may work now, there is no guarantee that the developer will keep up with updates and changes to WordPress. If your theme is not compatible with the latest WordPress version, your website amy not work properly – all of your efforts will be for naught. Spend the money (most likely about $100 or so) with an established developer in order to future-proof your business.

Another similar point is to register a domain (preferably a dot.com domain) and do not use the free WordPress.org domains. Domain registration is easy and cheap, and can done through your web-hosting company. Don’t settle for www.MyCompany.wordpress.org when you can have www.MyCompany.com for a few dollars per year.

There are pros and cons to naming yours site after yourself (although it is advisable to purchase www.MyName.com, even if you don’t do too much with it).  Naming your site after yourself, which many of the bloggers in attendance had done, allows you to develop a personal brand. The personal brand can be very valuable. However, this does limit your ability to sell the site to someone else.

Plug-ins are a critical component of WordPress – they provide a lot of the functionality to your  site. There are now over 35,000 plug-ins available for WordPress. Again, plug-ins are available from lots of places, but should only be obtained through WordPress.org. Ensure that the plug-in that you are downloading is compatible with the latest version of WordPress, and check the ratings, support and screenshots. Too many plug-ins (or poorly designed ones) can adversely affect the speed of your site.

Internet security is clearly an ongoing problem, as we have seen with the recents site hacks at corporations such as SONY. There are many companies that provide security services to web sites, and Sucuri was recommended. Similarly, make sure that your site is backed up – VaultPress and BackWPUp were two different systems that were suggested. VaultPress is a paid subscription service, and BackWPUp is a free plug-in.

Take home messages:

  • Register your own domain name, and don’t rely on a free one from WordPress.org
  • Purchase a theme from a reputable company, as you want to make sure that your theme is compatible with the latest WordPress updates.
  • Check out the ratings, support and screenshots of plug-ins. A poorly designed one can slow down (or even crippled) your web site.
  • Keep your online business secure
  • Make sure that you have a good back-up

Now, once we had the initial logistics and mechanics outlined, we came to the heart of the matter: Where are the opportunities to make money through Affiliate Marketing, and how do we capitalize on them? In other words, where is the Holy Grail actually buried?

The actual location of the Holy Grail was, of course, not fully revealed. But clues are given!

Coupons are big business online (FMTC integrates with the Clipper theme to create the coupon data-feed that flows into a coupon web site). FMTC is a subscription site that charges you a monthly fee to provide you with coupons from various companies. The Clipper theme is specifically designed to publish coupons to your site.

Internet Marketing (or Info Marketing) was another niche highlighted as being extraordinarily profitable – this is where training videos, e-books or any kind of digital products are sold. Someone (perhaps even you) creates the product, and you (and others in the info marketing network) promote it, and share the revenue. This seems to be a good place to get more information – The Information Marketing Association.

Once you have decided what product you want to sell, then the work of promoting the product comes into play. Keywords, SEO Optimization and calculation of return on investment are all critical components  to success. Social media sharing and channel distribution are also important aspects of your online business.

To analyze what people are interested in, use KeyWord Tools – this has a free component (always nice), as well as a more advanced, paid subscription. (There is a lesson here that we will explore later on!).

Yoast SEO helps you with your SEO optimization – SEO changes with every iteration of the Google algorithms. Make sure that each page you create is fully optimized for the search engines.

One of the best ways to create content, which, after all is King, is to address the needs of your audience. What do they want to know, and how you are uniquely able to provide them with this information? If you, and only you, can satisfy their needs, then they will become your customers.

When people post a question to Twitter, then you have an opportunity to respond to them – use the Twitter Search Function to see what needs are being unmet.

Ultimately, we need to consider this to be a business, not a hobby. The most important aspect of a business is profitability- in reality, in the business world, nothing else matters (as long as it aligns with your moral and legal boundaries). Calculate your revenue per click, multiplied by the click-through rate – that is your ultimate benchmark.

You have limited real-estate on your web site, and the key is to maximize your profitability by focusing on ads or offers that will drive consistent traffic towards your Call to Action. It is much better to have 1,000 people a day who spend $1 per day  than to have 1 person per day who spends $500 (assuming that the costs of production are equal).

Repurpose your content – create an YouTube video or Podcast from the content that you posted on your website.

Build your mailing list – the cash is in the list. This is a key take-home message. Google, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest (or any other social network), can change their cost of admission at anytime, and if you  are on the wrong side of their angels, you are gone. Your email list is your property – it is your gold. Create and cultivate it as soon as possible.

Once  you have the email list, start to segment it, and identify prospects who will move through the sales funnel that you have created. (You have decided upon a sales funnel, haven’t you?)

With a large enough list, there will always be a certain percentage who will joyfully move through the funnel, and provide you with revenue every step of the way!

The most successful online marketers use multi-level strategies to profitability

  • Identify the niche where you want to succeed.
  • Research who the existing players are,and identify what they are doing.
  • Use Keywords and SEO, Landing Pages and other strategies to develop campaigns to excite prospects
  • Create awareness of the product that you are promoting through multiple channels (blogs, websites, YouTube, Podcasts, Landing Pages etc.).
  • Develop (or license) a free product – infographic, white paper, e-book, or something similar.
  • Identify those who desire your free product, and provide the free product in return for their e-mail address.
  • To those who provide their e-mail addresses, offer a low-cost product (called a tripwire product) for sale. A customer who buys the tripwire product from you is more likely to buy a higher priced product.
  • Segment prospects and guide them through your sales funnel.

This was an extraordinarily informative session, and I hope that my synopsis is valuable to you. Comments and Facebook shares are greatly appreciated!

 

 

 

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