My Internet Journey
My name’s Thomas. You can read about me and my personal details in the “About Me” page should you be so inclined.
I first discovered the ‘net way back in 1994. In those days, it was all dial-up connections and pages that took up to several minutes to load. Boy, we were a patient lot back then!
I guess I always knew the internet was going to become big business, but no-one, I’m sure, could forecast the internet as we see it today. I, and most people, never dreamed that it would become so easy (and so hard, in some ways) for ordinary folk like you and me to become online entrepreneurs and be running our own internet businesses.
The first time I heard of someone having an online business was back in the mid 2000s. My older brother had a website selling fishing gear from a Chinese company. He was retired, and set it up as a way of earning a little extra income by exploiting his main hobby, fishing. His business was what today we’d call a Drop Shipping site.
At around the same time, another friend, who lived in the same town as I, had set up a similar business.
Unfortunately, I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention at the time. (Just another missed opportunity) I do remember she had an arrangement where she could design watches, mugs, belt buckles and loads of other items and promote them online. She’d take orders and payment, then order the items from a supplier somewhere (China, I think) to have the items shipped directly to the customer. She paid the supplier and kept a decent profit for herself. Business was slow however, and she dropped the idea after a bit.
Fast-forward to 2015, and I was on the verge of retirement myself. I started wondering about my friend’s, and my brother’s, businesses, and whether I could emulate what they had been doing. By this time, the internet was a much bigger deal, and almost everybody seemed to be online. I wasn’t looking to become a millionaire, just supplement my retirement income and keep the old Grey Matter active.
For the best part of a year and a half, I searched and researched all kinds of money making schemes. I was scammed and spammed by experts, and wasted a lot of time and a whole lot of money. I soon came to realize that the vast majority of Make Money Online schemes were complete and utter scams.
Then I heard about affiliate marketing
The basic idea of an affiliate or content marketing website is that the creator/owner publishes an article that solves a problem or answers a question for a visitor. This could be anything from “What’s the best slow cooker for use in a trailer home” to “How do I back-up my iPhone to a Windows computer” or “Where’s the best place to stay in Cambodia”.
We then add links to the article that take the visitor to a site where they can read more details if they need them, and maybe purchase an item. Sometimes we just publish without links in order to build our traffic and trust. Sometimes we just have promotions on the site where we receive a small commission if someone clicks an ad.
There’s a short video here that explains the concept if you prefer. Go ahead, I’ll wait.
Product Research is the Key
People don’t always have the time or inclination to do thorough online research. If someone else is ready and willing to supply the info they need, they’ll mostly be quite happy to read our reports and be guided by our advice.
One big point I have to stress here is that we need to be honest and accurate in our assessments and reviews. We need to build trust.
If visitors trust our reviews they’re more likely to buy through us. It’s as simple as that.
Building my Affiliate Business
To be successful with affiliate marketing, you need the right training and support. I tried a couple of different affiliate groups, with limited success, until I found the Wealthy Affiliate group.
(If you haven’t heard of WA before, there’s a detailed review of what they offer from the blue link above)
Once I signed up and began my free trial I knew I’d found the answer!
I signed on as a Pro Member and within a few short months I was starting to earn money. Not a lot, but I could see I was in the right place. Things are much better now, thank you.
That’s the thing we have to remember. Affiliate marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme. It’s also not going to work if you’re not prepared to put in the effort and follow the training.
I now have six websites in total. I built this site, My-Buzz.com, firstly to help others who were looking to earn money online. I’ve since started expanding it to include all sorts of product reviews that didn’t fit with my other niche sites. I’ll be adding more as time passes.
Feel free to browse the various articles in my blog roll. Do you have any questions? Have you already tried some sort of online business? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you.
Thomas (AKA BusyBee)