Want to learn a strategy to make money online with your blog without chasing away your readers? Then this post is for you. If you’re an affiliate manager or outsourced affiliate management company, it can also help you to grow a value adding affiliate program for your clients or for your own company if you work in-house.
What you may learn is how to write content that doesn’t confuse your audience so that you can hopefully rank in the search engines and make money the following year. The question in your head is probably, why would I write now to make money in a year?
SEO can take 6 months from content publication to start to rank. You have to build links, test the title tags for clickability (you could do this first with PPC), build an internal linking structure, etc… If you’re a blogger or webmaster with a loyal following and your write about Christmas favors in May, your readers may get confused and new visitors may see your site as irrelevant and not subscribe to your site or stay. That’s why this strategy can make sense for you as you are writing all of your holiday content now.
How to Create a Relevant Blog Post Now to Make Money For Next Year’s Shopping Season.
Now that you know why we want to optimize our posts this year for next year, it’s time to learn what to think about and how to go about doing it. This post will walk you through 6 steps. There is a bit of a learning curve, but I link to different resource posts I wrote so please use those if you don’t understand a term like modifiers or internal linking structure.
1. Start Mapping Out The Shopping Seasons And Your Content
We’re going to use my client Beau-coup and their affiliate program for this example. Put a list of what you’re going to be publishing, like DIY Thanksgiving favor ideas, fun Christmas or Hanukkah printable gift labels, 20+ mason jar gifts for teachers, how to create a Halloween or Thanksgiving candy buffet, scary Halloween wedding favors or any of the other fun seasonal posts that fulfill a need and provide a solution that can be monetized.
You could also do this for Valentine’s, Back to School, Summer for Wedding season (which means planning and shopping for some products months before), etc…
2. Keyword Research
Now log into your favorite keyword research tool (Google Keyword Planner, Trillion, SEMRush, etc…) and look up a base keyword and a few modifiers. It’s important to remember that just because there isn’t a high volume, that doesn’t make it not a good term to go after. Now think about what you can do to answer solutions for people searching for things for next year while using those keywords.
Although your current readers may read the post now and shop offline at retail stores (it could be a lack of time to order online), you’ve created a solution for people looking for products, ideas or solutions for next year when the season starts over again.
By creating a solution and providing the resources to fix a problem or fulfill a need, you have now created a resource that can make money with affiliate marketing, CPM advertising, etc…
3. Pick Your Products And Images
Now that you know you are doing scary Halloween wedding favors or 20+ mason jar gifts for teachers, find the products from the merchants you want to work with.
You can take ghost and zombie favors for scary, use edible like cookies or eyeball cake pops or even go with customizable favor bags, labels and eco-friendly options as well. All of these make great long tail modifiers to add onto your main keyword phrase.
4. Write Your Post And Include Proper SEO Attributes
(the next step includes non-SEO writing)
Now you want to start writing your posts. When you first do this post, line up your products into categorized sections for a proper flow, categorization of products and to match your modifiers. Next cater to the search engines by:
- Using H tags to properly categorize and label your sections
- alt tags and image attributes to properly define what the image is
- Use solid keyword densities (for every 1 keyword phrase mention in 100 words, you have a 1% keyword density)
- Internal links to pass authority, drive traffic and increase page views
- etc…. The list goes on and on with on site copy, but you get the idea
The reason we started with the search engines is because we want this post to rank for next year’s shopping season. Once that is good to go, we want to make it a great resource for current and future visitors and readers.
5. Now Alter Your Content For Your Readers
Now that you have made the search engines happy, lets tweak and tune it for your readers to enjoy.
The goal here is to pre-sell the products so that your visitors will want to click through and shop. If you do a good job and open up the links in a new window, you can also hopefully sign them up for your newsletter or email address when they finish reading your post or shopping. By having them join your newsletter, you can keep them coming back for more tips, content and hopefully give you another chance to make money with them.
Here are some things to think about: (here’s a post on on site copy for conversions, this is key to pre-selling in posts like this.)
- Use You, Your and You’re, not I, Me and We – If you’re saying I, me and we, you’re talking about yourself and your own imagination. By talking about them and how they can use it, you help your readers to use their imaginations and develop an image or scene in their owns heads about how they can benefit from your ideas or recommendations.
- Adjectives are your friends – Use them to create imagery for your readers as well as a want and a need.
- A solid call to action – Don’t just show a link or an image, write click here to buy or better, click here to experience for yourself, etc…
- Keep the theme of your category going – Don’t go off track. Keep the theme of the section and post alive without breaking the persons thoughts or images.
- Visual appeal. If your paragraphs are larger than a few lines, break them up. Ugly, crowded copy is not fun or easy to read.
- Images – Try to make your images appeal to your buyer demographic and user base. You should also test them to make sure they look amazing when shared on social sites.
6. Start Building Backlinks
Once you have awesome copy that is search engine friendly, written to appeal and relate your visitors, while providing a solution that pre-sells and uses call to actions, it’s time to build backlinks.
The trick here is to not fall for bad backlink strategies.
If you’re writing about holiday ornaments or holiday favors, find favor sites, decorator sites, holiday sites, event planning sites with favor categories and other content relevant things. Do not use spam bots that comment on blogs, do not use blog commenting, do not use article sites, sign up for irrelevant directories, etc…. This is a great way to help ensure that when Google looks at your backlink profile, you that you do not rank. Instead give a solid PR and media push and build links natural looking links from content relevant and high quality sites.
The important thing to remember is that you can publish this content when it’s relevant for your readers and still make money. You may not make anything instantly, but if your content is optimized to rank for specific types of people looking for a solution the following year, you can earn money every year moving forward.
Even if you have links to buy the products in the post and nobody shops this year, it could just be that there isn’t enough time for shipping so people bought at retail locations. Don’t let it discourage you. Instead know that it was interesting enough for people to click and if you rank next year and each year following, you may be able to have a nice boost in revenue for each holiday, shopping or event season.