Working Smarter Not Harder

Although the Internet is crowded and making a buck in affiliate marketing may seem a daunting task, it's still every bit as possible today as it was a decade ago.

The key is working SMARTER not harder.

It may sound a little trite, but sometimes we need to give ourselves a self-audit just to keep things like this at the front of our minds. It's all about using your valuable time efficiently. But I digress...

The Internet is also very competitive. Millions of sites, blogs and social media tangents vie for the eyes of your visitors, moment-by-moment. But there's an upside...

There's MORE demand for affiliate products now than ever before. Purchasing good products and services on the Internet is now a ubiquitous part of life. People are comfortable shopping on the Web for literally ANYTHING.

Your potential market is expanding every day!

So are your options for success. But don't get caught up in the administrative tasks that can delay turning a profit.

Keep PRODUCING content. Whatever you do, keep growing your content base.

The fact is, you can labor over things like...

  • Signing up for newsletters
  • Setting up social media accounts
  • Keyword selection and other minutiae

...and waste months of prime time. That's time when Google could have been finding and indexing your web pages. Ignore the distractions and get to content-building as quickly as possible by following this list of priorities...

This is pretty self-explanatory. Don't pick a niche that isn't "nichey" - make sure your niche is small enough to dominate yet large enough to keep you supplied with traffic.

IMPORTANT: Choosing a niche you know and care about will help to keep you motivated.

2. Choose your target keywords

In keeping with the theme of this article, don't get caught up in the little stuff. Pick 20 of your best, most dominatable keywords and get started...

3. Write! Write! Write!

After getting your site or blog set up, get to writing those first 20 pages. And when you've finished those pages, keep going! Whether you're developing content for direct use on your site or for directory articles that point back to your site, the more content, the better!

When your aim is to work smarter not harder, those are the big 3 in affiliate marketing. Everything else is secondary to feeding the search engines. THEN you can start...

  • Placing affiliate links
  • Social media marketing
  • Setting up your subscriber list
  • Inbound link campaigns

Organization and time-management skills are important too. And picking the right tools (and setting) for the job can help streamline your working time...

1) Pay attention to your "high focus" time

Work within your normal body clock as much as possible. If you're a night person, make time to work on your business in the evening. Early bird? Rise early and crank out a few hours before interruptions of the day begin.

2) Your work area - avoid clutter

The only equipment you need is a computer, Internet connection and maybe a phone. You may want to work at a desk and have a few extras like a printer and file cabinet but try to avoid cluttering up your work area with unnecessary items and equipment. They'll just be a distraction.

If you can use a laptop, all the better. Laptops allow you to minimize the need to have any other work supplies and be completely mobile.

3) Your business

Always take steps to work efficiently especially when you're first starting out. Begin by researching and choosing the best platform to use for your business.

Piecing together hosting, template creation, keyword research tools, page building, a shopping cart (if you're selling your own product), stats tracking and so on can be really time-consuming, adding to the cycle of working harder, not smarter.

IMPORTANT: Using an all-in-one platform where everything you need is at your fingertips can save you hours and hours of time.

Look for well-organized "how to" info that covers all of e-business building, the right software for your type of business, good customer support, and a business-minded community where you can exchange ideas and talk to other online marketers.

Avoid getting pulled into using "free" tools. Before long you'll be paying for upgrades, add ons and the next "best thing".

Building your business "smart" is what will help to bring in targeted traffic, critical to your affiliate marketing success.

Working more efficiently in any number of areas helps reduce those long hours and provides flexibility to do other things.

Bottom line?

Reduce your distractions and stick to what's important...

Build a content-based website about something you care about using a platform that offers state-of-the-art tools and support with a process that is proven to work.

Then, keep your work plan simple and efficient.

That's what working smarter not harder is all about.

All-in-one platform ticks all the boxes

There's an all-in-one tool that is exactly what you're looking for.

It used to be called "Site Build It", but it's MUCH more than a website-building tool. So these days it's simply known as SBI. It's a complete suite of tools, with a step-by-step Action Guide and videos for researching a valuable niche, building a profitable online business, attracting targeted visitors, and making sales.

Web hosting, domain name, stats tracking, keyword research, blogging, Facebook integration, etc. are all included.

Ken Evoy, who created SBI, says that all you have to do is add your own brains and motivation. If you don't have much of either, don't despair. You'll receive a LOT of help from really generous, caring SBI coaches and owners on the private forum.

What's more, Ken guarantees your success. He'll give you your money back if you decide you can't do it (for any reason). So you really do have nothing to lose.

I've been recommending SBI for years. I've got family members using it now, and they love it.

If you want to learn how to build a successful online business, SBI gives you your best chance of success.

Here's something to think about...

Most people who choose SBI spend three months researching, comparing, and thinking about it before they eventually decide to get SBI.

To help speed up your "working smarter not harder" decision, I strongly recommend you carefully study these two pages...

1.) See the overwhelming proof. No other company on the Internet can provide the comprehensive proof of success that SBI provides. No one. It's a simple as that. No one.

2.) Compare the overwhelming value. SBI is so much MORE than mere site-building or web hosting. (If you're just starting, don't worry. You don't need to understand all those tools. You don't need to understand all the techie stuff to use SBI. The step-by-step Action Guide explains everything and leads you gently through everything you need to know.)

When you study those pages, you'll understand why tens of thousands of people have chosen SBI as their online business-building tool. It's perfect for businesses and affiliate businesses.

July 21, 2011

Comments (26)

Said this on July 22, 2011 At 09:42 am
I did this simple plan you advocate about 7 years ago using SBI. Being brand I knew nothing about Internet marketing. I did have a passion about boating and auctions and through SBI I built in my part time. I'm not rich but I started with basically a plan to produce content that would want to read. It works.
Said this on July 22, 2011 At 09:56 am

Great tips!

Especially if you have a day job, I have found that working before going to office is a right way to go (at least for me).

That way I can move forward almost every day when the content is concerned and I can focus to other parts of the affiliate marketing during the evening hours.

Said this on July 22, 2011 At 10:11 am
Thanks! Always good advice. I was just sitting here thinking about what to do. Sitting at my cluttered desk...

Usually I do write in the mornings, since I'm a morning person. I started out with Site Sell almost ten years ago. I wouldn't be where I am without it.
Said this on July 22, 2011 At 10:12 am
I've got to say it Allan, it's nice to read a newsletter written by you once again.

It's a real newsletter, it contains useful information, it gets read :0)

All the best,
Said this on July 22, 2011 At 10:27 am
I've been an affiliate marketer for a little over four years, and I can't believe how much time I wasted in the first couple of years getting distracted by things that weren't crucial to my business.

Now that I'm concentrating on the things that are truly important to running an affiliate business, things have really started to take off.
Said this on December 4, 2011 At 02:34 pm

What are those things that are truly important to running an affiliate business?

Said this on December 5, 2011 At 08:51 pm

Hi Daniel, That would be a good question to ask on our affiliate forum. The link is at the top of this page.

Said this on July 22, 2011 At 12:22 pm
Oh, you are so on target! Some days I have found myself going in way too many directions, and realize I hadn't gotten anything important done. I subscribe to way too many newsletters, all clamoring for my time to watch the latest video, much of which is about the money the person is making. At least an article I can skim down to the important stuff. Some of the videos don't even allow you to skip ahead. I recently did some detailed reports, and found out most of my money was being made by a site I've ignored for the past year. The new site was in the health area, which was hit really hard by Google's recent Panda update. So now I'm back to what's making money. I'm finding most of my time I'm trying to stay abreast of Google's updates, which often undermine what the last gurus are suggesting, like article spinning. I'm glad I never did that. Thanks for letting me vent. It made me feel better, so it wasn't a waste of time.
Said this on July 22, 2011 At 04:52 pm
Hi Allan,

Great blog post and I absolutely agree. One of the biggest things that derails people is a lack of focus. It's so easy to get distracted with the latest buzz when content is what drives the net. So start producing!

One thing that has helped me is to chunk time into 45 minute time slots where I just focus on one thing. Then I take a break for 5-10 minutes and then do it again.

Said this on July 23, 2011 At 02:36 am
Very good posts with a lot of good tips and reminders. It's way too easy to get off track - thank you for helping to reel me back in!
Said this on July 23, 2011 At 11:25 am

There is a trap that a lot of people fall into. And that is always looking for something more. A new product. A new program. The newest thing.

They jump from one thing to another and that gets them nowhere. A lot of people new in internet marketing do this. Soon their heads are just spinning. I know you see this all the time.

But if they had just picked one area or one product and focused on that they could actually, over time, build something of value.
Said this on July 23, 2011 At 10:36 pm
Hi Nick, Yes, chunking time in 40 or 45 minute time slots is excellent advice. I do that, too. It helps keep you fresh and can also give you a deadline to work to.
Said this on July 23, 2011 At 10:38 pm
Thank you! Much appreciated.

Outsourcing and contracting are good, but sometimes you can take them too far. :)
Said this on July 24, 2011 At 10:04 am

You called some years ago:
Said this on July 24, 2011 At 06:37 pm
Well, first you have to write. There's no point in getting links unless there's something good to link to. :)

The two - articles and links to them - still go together. One is no good without the other.

The best kind of links are still those that other sites give you voluntarily. So if possible, write articles and create content that is so useful or so outstanding, or so interesting that people will talk about it and link to it.

If that doesn't happen, yes, you'll need to keep actively looking for ways to get links to your pages. To Google, inbound links are still very important.
Said this on July 26, 2011 At 10:00 am
Allan - it's great to see how strong a supporter you are of SBI. About 7 months ago my partners & I discovered SBI and we have just about completed our first site - well may be not complete as it's an ongoing work - but 176 pages up & running. All I can say is that SBI is a simply magnificent system & set of tools and quite frankly, I don't know why anyone would not want to be an SBI owner. For us, it's been all about the keyword research and then the writing as you have said) - and lots of it. Thanks for your site. We intend to be frequent visitors.
Said this on August 13, 2011 At 07:45 pm

I spend hours and countless ours online trying to build my sites. I definitely have to learn how to work smarter instead of spending my entire life online. Thanks for the tips. I find some of them very useful.

Said this on August 17, 2011 At 01:55 am

Research is the most important part in any business. You have to reasearch your competitors and research your strategy. It will give your business the best boost.

Said this on August 28, 2011 At 12:24 pm

It is very important, when you work every day that you can relax and come down. I think we should  not do our work life to hard :-)

Said this on October 16, 2011 At 08:06 pm

Allan - Brad here. I am writing to tell you how refreshing it is to read writing from someone who has been at this over 12+ years.  I have been writing - writing - writing and doing the forum posting as well. 

Your suggestion about staying focused seems to apply in every field I have worked in. The shortfall is when that focus does not appear to pay off immediately. We are all raised to be so short sighted.

I appreciate your efforts to balance the market. You also made some very welcomed comments about the market. It is more competitive than 10 years ago - but it is also populated with more customers too.

Thanks again for your work and effort. Most good work goes unappreciated - I didn't want to pass up an opportunity to right that wrong here.

Best of luck - Cheers!

Said this on October 23, 2011 At 09:56 am

Allan, I have admired and been following your awesome work for years now! If you are new to online business I strongly recommend you follow suit. Allan's information and experience gives us all a no nonsense approach to achieving online success.

Said this on October 23, 2011 At 09:06 pm

Hi Brad and Patricia, Thanks for your kind comments. Much appreciated!

Said this on November 10, 2011 At 12:07 pm

Thanks for the tips Mr. Gardyne.

Said this on January 30, 2012 At 03:44 am

Hello Allan, First let me thank you for the advice of not just this article but of the many helpful tips you provide on your site. I do however have a question about the SiteSell hosting / development package.

For quite some time I've had a page on sitesell "favorited" but have yet to buy their hosting, and after reading about the "Rupert review " or case study find myself again looking at sitesell. However - it seems that although many very popular and informative sites reccomend their program, including this one - they are not hosted by sitesell?

On occasion I read other marketing info sites, like betternetworker, and others and it's the same there - they advertise the sitesell program but their main domain is not hosted by sitesell. Am I missing something? I hope this comment / question isn't taken the wrong way and in no way am I against their program as I've never tried it - but don't want to anchor my better domains to a program that may be difficult to change or remove content later if limited. Is their program or options when hosted there too limited to meet the needs of a larger site? What is the disadvantage of having this domain/site and others like betternetworker hosted by sitesell?

Said this on January 30, 2012 At 08:15 pm

Hi Tim, You've provided what looks like a fake email address, so I hope you see this reply...

First, our decision... was built in 1998, before SiteSell's SBI existed, so SBI wasn't an option for us at that time. Also, our site is a fairly complex one with a forum, affiliate directory, newsletter, knowledgebase, and articles. At the time of our last website upgrade a few years ago, we couldn't find one bit of software that would do everything we wanted, so we hired programmers to cobble together several scripts. It's not an ideal situation. If you can find reliable software designed for complex sites, then that would be a much better option.

I own complex and simple websites, and I'll bet you can guess which ones provide the headaches!

I've never tried to switch a site away from SBI. I don't know much about that. With SBI you have different options regarding how you build a site. For example, you can use the SBI block builder or use any HTML website builder you like. If you thought you might want to switch away one day, that would affect which option you chose. You can ask about switching away here: SBI Questions

Most SBI users build small or medium sites that are not complex. They're just designed to attract visitors and sell things. SBI users can easily have a blog, a newsletter, and even hundreds or thousands of pages of user-generated content. That's no problem at all with SBI.

If you want to add a forum, a dynamic directory, and classified ads, you'd have to tack on third-party software hosted on another web host. It CAN be done, and SBI helps you with advice on how to do it, but the vast majority of SBI users aren't interested in going that far. This is an option suitable for a beginner.

As you probably know, web hosting is just a small part of the package that SBI provides. I don't think of SBI as a "web host". It's an online business training program, where you're taught to brainstorm a profitable niche, build a site that attracts traffic, and monetize it in several ways, one of which is affiliate programs.

If that's what you want to learn how to do, then SBI would be ideal for you.

Said this on February 2, 2012 At 12:55 am

Great ideas Allan. Straight to the point.

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