I’ve been thinking about all the affiliate and internet marketing courses I’ve done over the years. Hoi many just languish on my digital shelves and how many I actually used and still use. Many had short lifetimes because they exploited a loophole or trick to achieve their aim and, once that was plugged, whatever the course taught didn’t work any more.
Then there’s the simple reality that the internet is an incredibly dynamic entity. Google changes the rules on a what – daily, weekly, monthly basis? We get to hear about the big changes like Panda and Penguin but the knock-on effect of these changes has a direct bearing on how our sites perform in Google’s search engines. There have been many courses on how to build backlinks down the years and most are redundant now because what they advised was wrong (at least in Google’s eyes).
Everyone seems to have their own take on keyword research too – what tools to use, whether to look at broad or exact searches, whether to target all the long-tail keywords you can find (and hope something sticks) or pick your keywords with surgical precision. Too much subjectivity in what works for each person here makes it impossible for me to recommend any one course. These days, keyword research is built into other courses and fits with the main course rather than being a detailed review of how to do keyword research in general.
So here’s what internet marketing courses have worked for me.
1. Wealthy Affiliate
I decided it was time to to go back to school where promoting websites was concerned. I wanted a fresh take on what works in 2016 and to dump older techniques that either don’t work any more or, in the worst case, are actually harming my sites.
Wealthy Affiliate has been around for years, so has a solid and provem track record for getting newbies to internet/affiliate marketing to earning life changing incomes. As with every other course, there’s no push-button solution. Students still need to put in time and effort to build their online business.
You’re taken from a basic introduction to building an online business to having an income-generating blog over 6 modules. Learn at your own pace. Successive modules are unlocked only when you finish the previous one.
One of the courses strongest point sis its very active user community. The ethos here is to help your fellow students. If you’re getting frustrated with a lack of progress, ask for some advice here. Many others have faced and overcome the same hurdles. Likewise, if you have a question of a technical nature, someone here will be able to answer it for you.
The sites you build are based on WordPress. But don’t worry if you know nothing about that platform, you’ll be introduced to it slowly in stages so that you don’t become overwhelmed.
As you progress through the modules, you’ll learn how to build your sites, the right way to research keywords, how to write the right type of content for your blog, how to improve visitor engagement on your site, how to monetize your site and how to promote your sites through social signals and other methods.
The course (a mixture of reading material and video tutorials) is continuously updated to keep abreast of changes in the search engines, social networks and WordPress.
The first module is free to try out. If you think this course is for you, then it’s $47 per month or $359 per year (equivalent to $29.92 per month).
Mark Ling has been a well-known name in internet marketing circles for many years now and he’s the guy behind Affilorama, another excellent course that shows you how to make money online by building websites and doing affiliate marketing through them.
The core of Affilorama is Affiloblueprint, the actual course itself. This contains 12 modules and starts off by putting your brain into the right mindset and then progressing through teaching you market analysis, how to do keyword research, how to create content, how to build your website, on and off-page SEO and link building. If then follows that with instructions on how to build mailing lists and newsletters before guiding you through the minefield of Pay Per Click advertising (used to promote your sites).
The Affilotools section lets you track how your sites are doing. And if you have difficulty or don’t have the time, the Affilojetpack section gives you reports and ebooks (in 18 niches) that you can use to build your lists along with year-long email series to plug into your autoresponder. It saves a huge amount of work.
You can start out as a free member, get the Affiliate Marketing Quick-Start Guide, the Downloadable Roadmap to Success and 120 video lessons.
After that, the next stage – Affiloblueprint – is $197 (one time payment).
3. Proven Amazon Course
In 2011, another course – Proven Amazon Course – had done the same thing some years earlier. What’s more, it was a fraction of the cost of ASM and has been continuously updated ever since. The information in this course is as current today as it was when it first launched.
This is not a course about building websites that affiliate with Amazon. It’s a course about how to sell physical goods on Amazon using the Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) option available to sellers.
This is as comprehensive a course as you’ll find on the topic. Material is constantly added to and updated and there’s a thriving community you can engage with who’ll provide help and answers for any query or difficulty you might encounter.
The hallmark of any good course is being able to interact with other students. This is the best course on selling on Amazon available.
The course is $299 (one time payment).
4. Domain Flipping
Another way of making money online is to buy and sell domain names and/or websites. This is know as domain flipping and can be quite lucrative if you know what you’re doing and can afford to wait for a sale to come in rather than needing to sell a site or domain as soon as you’ve bought it.
Domain Flipping Made Easy is a a comprehensive course that looks at all aspects of this income model.
The course is just $17.
5. The 6 Figure Traffic Academy
Chris Record is not some I’d come across until late last year. He’s an incredibly successful internet marketer who blazed onto the scene 3 years ago. Now he’s launched his very own internet marketing course called The 6 Figure Traffic Academy.
This course is focused on marketing through Facebook rather than via your own website. It looks at how to use Facebook as a marketing channel and how to monetize your Facebook pages with print-on-demand T-Shirts as well as by directing people to a Shopify store.
Record is also the creator of a tool called SmartMember which creates Udemy-style membership sites. These are perfect for video tutorial courses which can either be paid-for courses or free courses that act as lead magnets.
In the 6 Figure Traffic Academy, Record also teaches you how to use membership sites as bonuses to offer for affiliate offers. It’s how he was able to start building the number of sales he was getting when he started out.
Each week Record does a new webinar which is added to the membership area. These are not sales webinars but teach a different aspect of internet marketing.
There’s a $1 free trial which gives you access to the course for 30 days. After that, it’s $97 per month.
6. Viral Autobots
The idea behind this is that videos of a certain kind will go viral. Finding those videos can be extremely difficult but Viral Autobots allows you to search Facebook for viral videos which you then download, edit if necessary, and then post to your own Facebook pages.
Once the videos on your page go viral, then you can monetize those posts.
If you play around a lot on Facebook, then this tool and course should be right up your alley.
Lifetime Access is $49 (one time fee).
7. Niche Profit Full Control – [Now Offline]
If you’re familiar with Adam Short, you may have come across his Niche Profit Classroom course before. That course was closed down last year (2015) as Short introduced an newer and more comprehensive course called Niche Profit Full Control.
The course teaches students how to build an online business through creating their own websites. Not much different here than what’s taught in many other courses, but that only accounts for the first two (of eight) modules in the course.
Modules 3-8 teach students how to set up products and funnels, how to create sales pages and run product launches, how to ramp up traffic, maximizing revenue from your online properties, how to master the ongoing creation of content and how to solidify your long-term success.
It’s an incredibly detailed course backed by weekly Q&A sessions with Short (all of which are available for replay).
This is a limited access course and Short was only able to take on a few hundred students without being overwhelmed.
The course is currently closed to new members.
8. Instamate [No Longer Available]
This is a specific course for and tool for internet marketers for posting on Instagram. Engagement on Instagram is much higher than even on Facebook so it’s practically a “must use” marketing channel for any online business.
Instagram, if you’re not familiar with it, is a photo-sharing app for mobile apps. It was never designed to be used from a PC or laptop. And that has made it problematical to use unless you live on your phone or tablet.
Instamate is a web-based tool that you use from inside your web browser that allows you to find, edit and post images directly to instagram from your PC. That may not sound like much, but it is a big deal.
Other courses out there talk about the importance of using Instagram as a marketing channel but neglect to tell you how difficult it is to post to it from a PC. And editing and creating images on a mobile device, especially if you need to write text, is a pain.
The only weblink you have to work with on Instagram is in your bio, so all the images you post need to steer viewers towards that link. You can link to whatever you want – your website, an affiliate offer, etc. but the best thing to do is link to an opt-in page where you can start building your list.
While Instamate is primarily a tool, it does come with a course on how to use it and how to market effectively on Instagram.
Lifetime Access to Instamate is $47 (one time payment).
Previous Top Courses:…
1. Forever Affiliate
Launched by Andrew Hansen in 2013, the Forever Affiliate course teaches you how to build mini-niche sites using WordPress.
Also covered are a variety of ways for finding affiliate programs (some of the best aren’t on the main networks) – and how to go about promoting your site.
Techniques for building backlinks in 2013 are covered as well. This is very valuable information in itself – what a lot for site owners have been doing over the last few months is trying to recover from link penalties imposed by Google because they built backlinks the wrong way.
This course has a huge amount of content and very valuable information and is up to date for 2015.
Worth a look if none of the above courses appeal to you.
Forever Affiliate is $197 (one time payment).
2. Bring The Fresh
It’s a very odd name for a course on how to build blogs for internet and affiliate marketing. But that aside, this too is a course that has stood the test of time.
Bring The Fresh is primarily in video training format though there are some PDF training materials as well. It’s essentially a blueprint on how to build and promote websites, focusing mainly on WordPress sites.
The first part of the course starts out with keyword research, talks about site acquisition, site creation, ranking, and monetization.
The second part of the course looks at how to rank your websites for very competitive keywords, so covers a range of SEO and ranking techniques, all white-hat and above board so your sites will perform well long-term.
An additional section contains a number of interviews with other successful affiliate marketers, some 6 and 7-figure earners. These provide real inspiration on what’s possible just working from home.
This course also has a very active community, willing and able to help and offer advice if you hit a stumbling block.
This course is now closed to new members.
I recommend Wealthy Affiliate in its place.
3. Affiliate Passive Commissions Reloaded
Austin E. Anthony’s course is like a stripped down Forever Affiliate which looks at building niche WordPress sites. It doesn’t really cover the whole backlink building side of things so is consequently cheaper, but the information is still good. I keep going back to Affiliate Passive Commissions Reloaded and Forever Affiliate to refresh myself on the best way to build niche sites and for outsourcing resources.
This course is now closed.
4. Tube Raider 2.0
I’ve always shied away from making videos, partly from camera-shyness, partly because they can take so long to create. But if you do make videos (and, having gone through this course, I now intend to) then Tube Raider 2.0 shows you how you can take over Page #1 in Google for your keyword.
It’s filled with case studies rather than theory and demonstrates a viable way of either driving traffic to your website, boosting its ranking, or as a way for doing affiliate promotion. It’s on my To-Do list for when I get a bit of time.
5. Profit Marketer
Originally set up by Mike Johnson and Gary Prendergast, Profit Marketer was the go-to place for WordPress developers. Mike Johnson has since moved on and this membership site has changed somewhat over time.
It provides some great training (mostly put together by Mike) along with access to WordPress themes and premium plugins for a low monthly fee. You don’t get developer rights to stuff but you can use the themes and plugins on your own sites. It saves a ton of money on buying this stuff yourself.
BackupBuddy (which normally costs $150 a year) was added to the plugin suite last month. So we’re talking quality plugins here. I go back to Profit Marketer time and again when I’m looking for themes to use and I can usually find a plugin there that fulfills a need without having to go off somewhere else to buy one.
This membership site is now closed.
6. Flipping Paradise
Sometimes you lose interest in a site so rather than let it languish and not renew the domain name, it pays to actually sell the site to someone else in Flippa and similar sites. Site flipping has always interested me but I’ve never actually tried to sell a site through auction sites.
Naturally, there’s a knack to doing it well so you get better prices. Niche sites are currently selling well so the Flipping Paradise course fits in neatly with Forever Affiliate and Affiliate Passive Commissions Reloaded.
I went through the original Flipping Paradise course and then bought the Flipping Paradise All Access course which came out some weeks later (2013). This was a video version of the original PDF course with lots of extra material, done in a very structure way so you learn what to do and why. It’s a very comprehensive course and one I will be pressing into service as I restructure my business plan.
This course is no longer available.
7. Info Cash
This one’s for the PPC marketers. Now I tried advertising using Google Adwords about 8 years ago and lost a bit of money that way because I didn’t know what I was doing. It left me leery of doing PPC ever since. Besides, back when I was playing with PPC, you could direct-link to an affiliate offer which meant you didn’t need a website or to cloak links. Things were simple.
Then Google started changing the rules, and the “Google Slap” was the nom-du-jour for how small time affiliate marketers were treated by Google with bid prices on keywords being upped by Google to $5 because they thought your ad campaigns weren’t of a high enough quality. The upshot was that small time affiliate marketers were made to feel very unwelcome in Adwords.
Roll on to 2013 and something interesting has happened: Microsoft has worked out a deal with Facebook so that Bing Ads are shown in the results of Facebook searches. Suddenly, Bing Ads has a huge amount of exposure to the, what, 1 billion Facebook users.
Could that match the reach Google has to users of its search engine? Anyway, along comes Chris Carpenter, PPC marketer extraordinaire with an update to his old Google Cash (Adwords) PPC system. Now called Info Cash, he’s updated it to keep it current and switched focus over from Adwords to Bing Ads.
Because Bing Ads are welcoming to small time affiliates and they also allow direct linking to affiliate/CPA offers. Just like in the good ol’ days! I’ve been playing with this as a way to drive traffic to my sites and to affiliate offers. Moderate success so far but I haven’t been trying to break the bank with advertising fees!
Know WordPress was one of the WordPress courses I used when I was getting started with WP. All those buttons in the main menu, stuff across the top of the WordPress Admin pages, various boxes and things down the right hands side on some pages and below posts and articles when you’re creating them was a bit confusing and so these videos helped sort out what was important from what wasn’t.
This video creation course from Mike Filsaime and Andy Jenkins certainly looks good but I haven’t bought it yet so I’m not is a position to comment on it. Video Genesis shows you everything that people (you) do wrong when they create their own videos and how to fix those issues and make your videos just look more professional. Keep your eye on this one.
This video creation course has over 10,000 students enrolled and it’s one of Udemy’s Top 100 courses. This course is designed for anyone who is interested in creating high quality videos, with the Explaindio video creation software. They show you how easy it is to create and develop high quality videos for any purpose. A cheaper alternative to Video Genesis.
Also Rans – Tried But No Success
Zonterest – This is an online solution for building Amazon affiliate sites. The sites use the Pinterest model of showing content – the infinitely scrollable page that has 4 images per row with some text underneath each. Click on them and you get taken to a page on the site about the product. Oder links are also shown on the page. I found navigating back to the home page on sites difficult and fest that visitors would get lost or frustrated by the site. The package you buy also includes credits for buying social shares of your site. Despite the glowing testimonials on the Zonterest sales page, I found that the social signals didn’t bring traffic and my sites didn’t make a sale. Here’s a sample one. It is a simple system to use – you provide them with a keyword to build the site around and the domain name, and they do the rest. If you’re prepared to invest in doing your own backlinking, you may have better success than I did.
1. 100K Factory – This was a comprehensive 8 week course that launched in 2015. It looked at using Facebook to drive traffic to your websites using a number of different strategies.
A very high-priced course at $2,997, no refunds were allowed. This should have been a red-flag for me, but I ignored my gut instinct.
There is no member community here, either in a forum or in a Facebook group. When I asked if one was planned, I was told “no”. I now believe that success rates with this course were low and that the developers did not want members talking among themselves, spreading bad word about their lack of success.
Support was pretty bad too. When I asked for help with specific issues I had, I got generic replies or emails whose gist were “just try harder”.
Given the very high price of this course, that level of support was unacceptable.
100K Factory is being relaunched right now. My advice is to steer clear of it.
2. Jaime Lewis’ “Magnum Commissions” course looked pretty darn good in the sales videos. Lewis seems to have a good reputation online but the initial bad sign with this course was the unending up- and down-sells. Because I wanted to see what was involved, I bought everything. So, from a tempting $47 product on the front end, I ended up forking out over $700. Upsells are just getting out of hand on internet marketing products, so be prepared for them. Anyway, Magnum Commissions was complete crap for a variety of reasons which I won’t bore you with here. Needless to say I got a full refund (that’s a story in itself). If you really want to, you can check out my review here (and no, it’s definitely not a product I promote).
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