One’s best bet would be to create a niche website with multiple sources of income. With decent amount of hard work, dedication and strategy, even a newbie can create a money making website quite easily without spending an armload of cash.
With less than $100, one can be all set to create a revenue generating website that can provide part-time or even full-time income. The goal is to choose a good niche, create truckloads of quality content, attract targeted visitors and then monetize the site with Adsense, affiliate programs or your own products, services, etc.
Your first website will teach you so much that you will never regret your decision to create one. So, let’s learn step by step on how this can be achieved by just about anyone out there without any technical knowledge or prior online experience.
Step 1: Finding a Profitable Niche- Cost: $0
Finding the right niche is the most important step in the website creation process. Some market research would be needed to narrow down a profitable niche.
For instance, if you were a build a review site on cell phones, choose a specific brand of cell phone. This too might be competitive, so try narrowing your niche further down.
For example, target refurbished or used cell phone models. The goal is to find a desirable keyword that has little to no competition.
Since the site would be monetized with Adsense too, it’s a good idea to consider topics that are popular in USA and UK because clicks from these countries
Step 2: Keyword Research- Cost: $0
Keywords are basically words that visitors type in the search engine to find something. Popular keyword phrases for cell phones might include iPhone, Samsung Galaxy and so on.
The key is to find phrases that do not face stiff competition, yet they reflect your chosen niche. Also, the chosen keyword must have sufficient searches to be worth pursuing. If the site is meant to be monetized with affiliate programs, you need to consider “buying keywords”.
In simple terms, it’s a term used for people who are motivated to purchase the searched item. You should choose one main buying keyword and several other supporting keywords that are related to the main keyword. For instance, if “iPhone 7” is the main keyword, “iPhone 7 discount” or “iPhone 7 price in USA” can be a part of the supporting keywords.
Once the keywords are chosen, one’s best bet would be to create separate pages for the supporting keywords so that it’s easy to target these keywords by including them throughout the pages or post. Please know that excessive use of keywords should be avoided. The article should flow naturally without any signs of forced keyword entries.
Step 3: Get a Domain Name- Cost: Less than $10
You can either choose an exact match or a partial match domain name. Your best bet would be to buy an exact match domain name, if available. For instance, if your chosen keyword is “make money online”, you can consider domain names such as makemoneyonlineideas if the exact match is not available.
Avoid domains that are not dot com. Also, do not go for a very long domain name. The maximum length of the chosen domain should be no more than three words.
Domains can be purchased for under $10 from Namecheap, Godaddy and similar domain providers. Domain registrars often release coupon codes that can help you get the desired domain name for as low as $1. Always use Google Search to find discount before buying.
Step 4: Get Hosting – Cost: Less than $5 a Month
Basic hosting packages can suffice for a new site. Basic hosting packages cost less than $5 a month through Godaddy, Bluehost and several other hosting providers.
Additional discounts are generally offered on yearly packages. The use of coupon codes can further lower the hosting fees. It’s recommended to use the search engine to find hosting coupons before placing an order in order to save some money.
Step 5: Install WordPress- Cost: $0
Although there are other blogging platforms out there, WordPress is recommended for beginners as well as experienced webmasters because of its user friendliness.
Great deal of customization can be done within the WordPress panel to change the look and feel of the website. There are literally endless choices of free themes and plugins that can be easily incorporated in the site with few mouse clicks.
So, no coding skills or technical background is needed with WordPress installation. Most hosting companies out there have a simple one click WordPress installation feature too that loads the latest version of WordPress on your hosting account.
Make sure to save all the login details once the installation is complete. The only expense over here would be for a theme, if you go for a paid one.
Premium WordPress themes cost anywhere from $50 to $100. As mentioned earlier, this cost is optional because there are loads of free WordPress themes out there. The key is to choose a theme that matches your niche.
Step 6: Install Plugins- Cost: $0
There are truckloads of WordPress plugins out there that can be used for creating an almost perfect website without any coding skills. No matter what changes you want to make, chances are that there is a plugin in place to make the changes.
There are plugins to integrate social media, for creating contact us page, to track statistics, to add shopping cart, to moderate comments and so on. All it takes is a few mouse clicks to integrate the desired plugin on your site.
Step 7: Create Social Media accounts- Cost: $0
Social channels are more than a means to connect with family members and friends. They are a great promotional tool for website owners.
Although maintaining them might seem like a bit of work, they can be instrumental in driving great deal of traffic. You may consider popular social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest to share your content.
While opening accounts on these platforms, make sure to complete your profile information with website url, photo and all other required information to appear real to users.
It’s imperative to stay active on social networking sites to reap any benefit from social media promotion. While regular posting is a must, it’s important to not over-post or else your followers will get overwhelmed with your posts.
To get maximum exposure to your posts, make sure to keep your posts public so that the post can be read by one and all and not just your friends and followers.
Keep the messages interactive so that it does not appear that the account is all about website promotion. This can be achieved by striking a good balance of posts.
Step 8: Write Quality Content- Cost: $0
Most authority sites have one thing in common- high quality content. Google and other search engines favor sites that have good quality content.
Therefore, it’s said that content is the king. So, content is what really matters. Instead of having bare minimum content, you must thrive to put maximum content on your site. A handful of articles won’t really do the trick over here, especially if you are looking to create an authority site.
Generally, the content creation process begins with keyword research. After all, keyword research will help you determine the overall topic of the content.
You need to plan content posting wisely on your site. Usually, one article will have your main keyword in the title and the remaining articles will be on the related keywords.
To begin with, you can start with 8 to 10 articles and then add new content on regular basis to ensure repeat visitors. As the site starts to show great promise, you may want to add 1 article every day.
You can write the content yourself so there is no need to pay someone for the same. That being said, it’s better to hire a content writer if your writing skills are not very good.
Depending upon your budget, you can order 5 to 10 articles in the beginning for $50 or less. You can find good writers that charge no more than $1 for 100 words.
You can also invite writers to become contributors on your website. Remember, to accept only those writers that write content related to your niche. Contributing writers can provide free content in return for a link back to their sites.
This approach should be fine as long as the links belong to an authority site. The best thing to do over here is to look for other websites in your niche and reach out to the website owners through the contact us page to see if they are interested in contributing content for your site.
Step 9: Start Building your Email List- Cost: $0
Building an email list is one of the best ways to generate passive traffic to one’s website. When someone subscribes, it means that they are interested and are much likely to open your email.
Email list have a higher user engagement rate. Fortunately, there are quite a few free email subscription services out there. For instance, MailChimp offers free account till the first 2000 subscribers.
Also, some WordPress themes have a built-in email subscription widget in the sidebar. In order to increase your email subscription rate, it’s a good idea to offer some kind of incentive to visitors so that they feel compelled to join your email list.
Most visitors love free stuff and they jump into the scene almost immediately. So, offering them immediate incentive in the form of eBooks or coupons can prove to be a great idea over here.
Step 10: Monetize your Website- Cost: $0
You can monetize your website through various income sources. Affiliate marketing is a popular means to earn income from one’s blog/website.
Affiliate marketing is all about recommending someone’s products/services on your site to earn commission on every sale. Commission Junction, Clickbank, ShareASale are few of the top affiliate marketing platforms where a webmaster can find a ton of products to promote.
Pay Per Click Advertisement such as Google Adsense, Chitika, Infolinks, Adversal pay website owners for clicks on ads displayed on the website owners site.
The process is pretty simple. Upon approval, you have to place a code on your site to display relevant ads to visitors and upon each click, you earn money.
Google Adsense is the most popular Pay Per Click Advertisement platform. Their approval process is quite stringent but they much pay better than other similar programs out there.
Selling Ad Space on your site is another great way to make money online. Remember, you will only be able to attract clients when your site receives at least few thousand visitors a month.
No one would like to spend money on a site that barely receives any visits. So, it’s important to drive traffic to your site before you even consider selling ad space on your site.
Ad spots can be sold for anywhere from $10 to $1000 or more depending upon the traffic that your site receives. BuySellAds and AdvertiseSpace are popular platforms that can help you sell ad space quickly because these platforms are already well known with webmasters who are actively seeking ad space to promote their sites.
If you want to eliminate the middleman, you can create your own digital product to sell on your site. Digital products are convenient to sell because there is no shipping and storage required. Once you create it, you simply need to upload it for instant download for your customers.
You can sell the product directly on your site and receive payments for the same without any cut. Keep in mind, creating a digital product from scratch does require a lot of time and efforts. Your best bet would be to create an e-Book relevant to your site in order to improve your conversion chances.
You can also make good money online without making a sale. Cost Per Action (CPA) is a great money making method that basically helps you earn money for just introducing the buyer and the seller. It’s a way of marketing, where visitors are required to take some action for you to get paid.
It works well because you just have to gain some free information from the visitors such as their email address and zip code and not actually sell anything.
If you are good at something and your site relates to your expertise, you can add a “hire me” page on your site. This is a good way to leverage your opportunities through your site. This can result into passive source of income for years and years to come.
Make sure to list down all your skills and experience along with past work details to improve your chances of getting hired by prospective customers.
Generating and selling leads can also bring significant revenue through your site. Ideally, you should consider this option when you have a strong following with steadily increasing traffic.
Over here, you will create an opt-in lead form on your site to generate leads to sell them to the end buyer. For instance, if your site is about cars, you can sell the leads to some auto financing companies. Some companies pay top dollars for each lead.
Step 11: Learn Basic SEO Skills: $0
While you can drive traffic through social media, the most important source of traffic will always be the search engine.
Nothing works better than organic traffic and to drive organic traffic, you will need some SEO education. There are numerous ways to learn SEO skills.
Exploring little bit of each of the options mentioned below can give you a good understanding of the SEO skills to market your site effectively in order to gain organic traffic.
There are loads of SEO articles and guides that cover the basics about SEO. It’s a good idea to begin with these tutorials as a first step towards SEO training.
Apart from this, one can subscribe for top SEO Blogs for the latest tips and news regarding SEO. Getting involved in SEO forums and related communities can also prove to be of great help in enhancing your SEO knowledge.
You can start interactive threads on forums if you have any questions to ask regarding SEO. Another top tip over here would be to check out LinkedIn SEO groups and connect with them.
Once you start accumulating information from reliable sources, you will be well on your way towards practicing SEO. The best way to learn is to try it. So, put your learning skills into practice. Of course, there are paid options too.
You will have to spend hundreds of dollars for paid SEO work. As a beginner, you might not have an extravagant budget to hire SEO experts for your site.
So, it’s highly recommended to learn the basics of SEO, while upgrading your knowledge at the same time to learn more in order to earn more.
Now, you have got several options to make money online. If you find something that really interests you, do not hesitate to get started. Do remember that money isn’t going to immediately fall from the sky.
However, with committed efforts and dedication, you should be able to learn a lot and also make loads of money in due time. The build-up may be slow, but persistent efforts will pay off in the long run.