I’ve been asked a few questions lately about the best ways of making a living online, after hearing of a few scare stories I thought I would explain a few of the basics about Internet marketing. I’ve just been looking at my Facebook account and unbelievably I had received a spam email that was forwarded to me by a friend that had fallen for what I had seen for the obvious publicity scam that it was…
The 21st Century Gold Rush.
Yup. They say that history repeats itself and today I have witnessed a fine example that it really does though not necessarily in exactly the same form.
Today I have finally managed to get myself ranked in Google as #1 (for a specific number of key words that I will not divulge here, but let’s just say they’re a good choice of words for my line of work and there’s a reasonable amount of competition for them).
A year ago I was half way down the third page, then after a bit of a struggle I managed to get myself to the bottom of the first page (I even remember being happy about that) and in being on the first page on Google I thought I was bound to get busy… nope.
After months of tweaking the wording and honing my SEO skills I managed to get my site to position #3. This I was quite happy with, however I was still not getting any calls – there was a little bit of traffic to my site but not much, there were signs of life, but I honestly would have thought I’d have received a lot more traffic than I was getting. No I’m not about to tell you that all of a sudden with this new amazing scheme X you’ll suddenly be getting millions of hits and make a fortune.
In fact what I’m about to tell you is rather dull.
After a year of struggling with mastering SEO I’m finally at #1 and you know what?
There, that’s it. I’m at #1 and I still get just a dribble of traffic. When I was at position #3 and only had a few visits per day I thought to myself that somehow people must only be clicking on the top link, that somehow it must only be the person in top place that gets the lions share of the ‘clicks’ however I’m now there and it’s just not true.
I apologise to give you this information but I thought it might be nice if someone wrote an article that was actually the truth.
In fact writing this post made me remember the great Californian ‘Gold Rush’ and of all the stories of how someone went to California dug up a bit of mud, found a gold mine and now they make 8 billion pounds per nanosecond for doing absolutely nothing.
If I knew where £10 of gold was buried, I’d be silly to set up a business to actually go and dig up the gold when I could be telling other people where the gold is! It seems to be that the actual ‘gold’ is telling people where the gold is. (I hope that makes sense)
For example if £10 of gold were buried I would be better off telling 1000 people that I know where the gold is buried and charging them each 2p for the information. It does seem a little deflating to know that being 1st place in Google doesn’t make a lot of difference, certainly if you receive a sales call from some silly man who wants to charge you a few hundred quid for being on the first page in Google (or even 1st place!) You can tell him to forget it.
(What you could actually do is find out exactly how much the words you want cost using Google AdWords and then only offering them a fraction of the price.)
The only magic is the sales pitch of a website that’s all, by getting people to believe, or rather leading people to believe that one is uber successful online actually does make one become so, or to put it another way ‘Other peoples belief becomes your reality’. That’s the way it seems to me as to how to be successful online – Holding up a wooden sign with an arrow saying “Californian Gold Rush -> THIS WAY!” and charging a small amount of money to point the sojourner in the direction of California.
I was watching a YouTube video online earlier today which was a link from one of these ‘get rich quick’ type pages and it was so obvious to me that this guy was totally lying it was shocking – He had every classic tel-tale sign of lying. Some of these marketers have the ability to talk for hours on end about absolutely nothing. Honestly give them one sentence that vaguely means something and these guys can spin it out to a 19 volume presentation, multi-series video diary. (It’s a bit like making ‘Rice Crispies’ – sorry I don’t know what they’re called in America or elsewhere, but it’s basically taking a single grain of rice and expanding it with hot air into something to make it look like it’s more than it really is).
The economy I’m afraid to say is exactly the same online as it is offline.
The moral of this story is: “The people who successfully make a living online are the people who get others to believe they are making a successful living online and will let you in on their ‘little secret’.”
Hopefully my next posting will be less negative, but I would rather write the truth and explain reality to others that be another proponent of this supposed online ‘gold rush’.