When it comes to making money online, you need to sacrifice either your money or your time (or any combination of the two) to be successful. In previous articles, such as the one breaking down the “viral rolodex“, I’ve covered several mostly risk-free, low-investment methods for doing so.
In this article, I’m going to detail one of the best methods I know of to make real money online with little to no risk or initial investment. This method has big potential for growth, and if you work at it you can build up an impressive income into the six figures and beyond.
This method can technically be employed in any niche, but I would say that it works best in the make money online (internet marketing, bizopp, etc.) niche because there is much more opportunity there, and you’ll understand what I mean by that as you keep reading. As with most things that deal with making money online, this will be easier and perhaps even more enjoyable if you have knowledge and experience in the niche you’re targeting.
For those who are lazy and don’t want to read the entire article, this method can be summarized as follows: find products that have some hype behind them that are launching in the near future (ideally 1-3 weeks), sign up to be an affiliate for that product, and create a review about that product on your website that includes your affiliate link. The aim is for your review to rank on the first page of Google and other search engines in time for launch; when marketers promote the launch to their list, many of those people will go to the search engines to look up a review, find your review, and hopefully buy the product through your link so that you get paid a commission.
Now I’ll hash this out in more detail. I’ll break this method into a few of steps, starting with the creation of your website if you don’t already have one. Note that from this point on I’ll be assuming you’re targeting the make money online niche, but as I mentioned above, this can be applied to products in any niche.
Step 1: Create and Set Up Your Website
The first thing you’re going to need to do is set up a website or blog to create your review posts on. There are several ways to do this, from using a free website builder like Wix or Weebly, to installing WordPress, to creating a free WordPress blog on WordPress.com.
I’m biased towards WordPress myself and would highly recommend that, not to mention the fact that in this particular case, a blog-style website is pretty much a must because of what you’re going to be doing with review posts. You can start a free blog on WordPress.com, but while you might have a better chance of ranking on the search engines because of the site’s authority, it might not be the best idea when you think long term. You should register your own domain, get hosting, install WordPress and install a nice straightforward blog theme.
First register your domain at a domain registrar. I recommend Namecheap. You can pick a name that’s brandable or has the word “review” in it if it’s going to mainly be a review website, but it’s really up to you what you want your domain name to be. Make sure it’s available. A .com is highly recommended as it’s the most attractive extension and stands a better chance of ranking in search engines.
Next, get web hosting. My #1 recommendation for web hosting is SiteGround, and I talk about what makes them so great in this post. SiteGround has tutorials, a great help section and live customer support you can chat with to get familiar with everything, get your domain linked and get everything set up. Once you’ve chosen your web host, you can either their WordPress auto-installer (if they have one) to install WordPress, or install it manually. There is a process to this and you can easily find the necessary information online.
Once WordPress is installed, you need to choose a theme. I recommend a blog theme as that’s what’s most appropriate for a website that churns out product reviews. Keep it simple: choose a theme like Iconic One or Wisteria (the theme I’m using) that has a header section, top navigation, sidebar section and blog roll.
Next, install plugins. I strongly recommend an SEO plugin like Yoast SEO or All in One SEO Pack. I personally use Yoast myself, but either will do. An SEO plugin will allow you to optimize your site and each post you make for the search engines, thus improving your rankings. Other plugins I recommend are a spam-blocking plugin such as WP-Spamshield, a review plugin to get rich snippets in your search listings, a contact form plugin, share button plugin and Pretty Link. Pretty Link will enable you to cloak your affiliate links using your website domain to make them look more attractive.
Step 2: Find Offers and Get Links
Once your website infrastructure is all set up, it’s time to start looking for upcoming products to write review posts about.
For this, I would recommend visiting a site called MunchEye. MunchEye is a site that lists upcoming and recent product launches in the internet marketing niche. Here you want to find products set to launch some time in the future (ideally in 1-3 weeks so that Google has time to rank your review), visit their JV page, apply to get your affiliate link, and then start writing a review that includes that affiliate link.
Here’s some tips:
- target the “Big Launches” on the left-hand side. These are upcoming launches from vendors with a good reputation who consistently come out with successful products. These products are most likely to have a lot of hype surrounding them, which means you’ll get more traffic to your review (and make more sales) if you manage to rank.
- don’t discount the potential of smaller launches; while they have less hype and likely won’t generate as many sales as a big launch, there is usually much less review competition, which means it’d be easier to rank on the first page in search engines.
- apply to get your affiliate link as soon as possible. In the “notes” section of your request, be sure to let the vendor know that you’re going to be writing a review post; this will increase your chances of getting approved. You might not get approved all the time, and in that case you’d just move on to another product.
Step 3: Write Your Review, Rank and Make Money
Once you’ve found an offer and have your affiliate link, start a new blog post and write your review. There are no hard and fast rules for getting top rankings in search engines, but here are some tips and guidelines for maximizing your chances:
- for software products, look for a demo video from the vendor, and embed one in your review if one is available. This will improve the quality of your review and is good for ranking as well.
- you should make your review at least 1000 words, ideally 1500 or more, to maximize your chances of ranking well.
- your review doesn’t have to be perfect. The main goal is to just write something about the product and get it ranked in the search engines in time for launch.
- you can write your review based on the sales and JV pages, but you’ll be able to write a more helpful review if you can get review access to the product. For this purpose, you should ask the product vendor for review access after you get approved; not every vendor will grant you review access, but if that’s the case, you can do just fine working with the sales and JV pages.
- offer related bonuses for purchasing through your link. There are many methods for getting bonuses, and one of them is asking the product vendor if they have any relevant bonuses that you can offer your visitors. Sometimes they will, and sometimes they won’t. Other ways to obtain bonuses are to create them yourself or buy them from PLR websites. You should offer a minimum of three relevant, quality bonuses; assemble them into a zip file, host them on your site or a file hosting service like Dropbox, and paste the link into the bonus field of the product’s affiliate platform.
- utilize the functionality of your SEO plugin to optimize keywords, SEO titles, slugs, descriptions, etcetera — make sure you include the product name and “review” keyword in these elements.
- use your review plugin to assign a rating, list pros and cons and introduce rich snippets (star ratings) into your search engine listings.
- include at least 2-3 images in your post.
- include your affiliate link multiple times throughout the review, including near the top and bottom.
Once you post your review, your work is pretty much done. You need to give search engines a few days to a week (or more) after your posting date to properly rank your review. If you manage to rank at or near the top of the first page, you will get traffic and make sales throughout the launch period.
Often times you won’t rank anywhere near the first page, particularly when your site is young, and that’s okay. Just keep posting reviews and building your website authority, and over time your rankings will improve.
That about wraps up my overview of this “launch jacking” method for making money online. As you might suspect, there are plenty of people doing this, but there’s no reason you can’t get in the game and get a share of the pie.
Aside from the cost of domain registration and hosting, which are negligible, this method can be done completely free if you write the reviews yourself. It will take time (remember: money or time) to build your site authority and get to the point where your reviews are ranking at the top of Google, but once that happens, you’ll be able to make serious money. I know two website owners who are doing something similar and making around $30,000 a month.
All that you need to do now is take action. Let me know how you do with this!
If you have any questions or feedback on this method, feel free to leave a comment below!