How To Make Money With Completely Free Traffic

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My How To Spot Opportunity article got a lot of traffic and comments. I hope some of you are implementing what you learned. This is a Part 2, of sorts. It’s a completely different method, and it’s free. This won’t make you rich, but it can easily pay for your utility bills every month. :)

If you’ve got more time than money than one of the best ways to make money online is utilizing free traffic methods. I test everything at least once and, over the past couple of years, HubPages has been one of the more promising methods of generating traffic and cash.

HubPages are really easy to create (seriously, it will take you less than 15 minutes to create your first Hub) and the traffic they generate with almost no work on your part is pretty impressive.

BTW, there are NO affiliate links to paid products in this article. While I have no problem recommending products with my affiliate link, for this particular situation it isn’t completely necessary.

(Side note: What I mean by Paid Products is products you have to pay for. Yes, the HubPages links in this report are “affiliate” links, but HubPages is completely free to join!)

Steps to creating a profitable Hub:

1) Pick a keyword phrase using the free Google Keyword Tool (more on that in a bit) and make that phrase the name of your Hub.

2) Write a 400-500 word article on that keyword phrase. Make it informative and helpful. Don’t try to sell anything. No affiliate links…yet.

This is important, so I’ll repeat it again: provide quality content in your article.

While HubPages doesn’t really police their site so you can do what you want, it’s a much better idea to make your content good.

3) Use SocialPoster.com (free) or any similar service to submit that Hub to the Social networks.

4) Once you start getting traffic pepper in an affiliate link at the beginning and end of your Hub.

This whole process will take you less than an hour once you have all your social posting site accounts in place.

I know it sounds too easy, but that’s really all there is to it.

Let’s get to the details...

Hub Settings:

Just follow the settings above for your Hub. Since HubPages splits the Adsense with you 60/40 (60% to you 40% to them) you may not want to include any ads at all. That’s up to you.

I’ve found that Adsense is not taking away at all from the affiliate revenue my Hubs generate. And hey, you’re helping HubPages out with the 40%.

I’m on board for helping quality companies like them. If they don’t generate revenue they won’t be around to help us generate revenue, get it?

Keywords:

Just like in my How To Spot Opportunity article, use the Google Keyword Tool: https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal

People seem to get stuck on keywords, but it’s really not that difficult. What you want for your HubPages are keyword phrases that have a decent search volume (at least 10,000/month) and low competition (under 50,000) when you do a phrase match search in Google.

For example:

As you can see this particular keyword has an Average search volume of 12,100/month.  Important to note the Match Type on the right side. The default is Broad, change it to Phrase when doing your searches.

And here’s the competition in Google for the same keyword. Again it’s a phrase search (the keyword in quotes).

So this keyword has 21,500 competing pages in Google.

12,500 avg search volume and 21,500 competing pages is a pretty good keyword to use. I’ll show you the exact stats for this keyword in the Proof This Works section below.

I know what you might be thinking “well that’s all well and good Karol, but where do I get my keyword ideas?!”

And this is probably where you think I’ll throw in an affiliate link or two. :)

I’m not gonna play you like that.

Let me repeat what I stated at the beginning of this article…

There are NO affiliate links to paid products in this article. While I have no problem recommending products with my affiliate link (and there are ways to make this whole process easier with paid software) I’m going to give you the free method.

The easiest way to quickly generate keyword ideas for your Hubs is to look at other successful Hubs. :)

Here’s a list of Hot Hubs: http://hubpages.com/hubs/hot/

Yup, that’s it. Just take their keyword phrases, check them out using the Google method above to find the best ones, and write YOUR OWN Hub on that keyword phrase.

Checking out other Hubs in the Google keyword tool will give you other keyword ideas so don’t feel like you can’t use them too.

What I’m trying to say is use your brain a bit. Get those synapses firing. :)

Got it? Good…

Proof This Works:

Because, for whatever reason, nobody believes anything anymore without proof. ;)

This is a screen shot (from my PrimaryAds.com account) for the month of January 2010 for the affiliate links in a single Hub. $24.80.

A screen shot from Google Adsense for that same Hub. $18.70

The total this Hub made for all of January 2010 was only $43.50.

Does that excite you?

It should.

Here’s why:

That Hub has been around for more than a year. 1 hour of work and hundreds of dollars of profit. It’s repeatable. It’s easy to do. And it’s completely FREE to get started.

Let’s say you only create 10 Hubs that make an average of $1 per day and it takes you 2 hours of your total time per hub. That’s 20 hours of time for an extra $300/month. Realistically, every hub you make won’t make money. But even if you had to create 50 hubs to generate $300/month that’s a great start. It’s not just about the money. It’s also about the learning experience.

Is that all worth it to you? I hope so. Because if not, I don’t think I can ever help you.

(I am NOT checking my Feedburner stats for a while due to the subscriber loss that last sentence will bring! haha)

Coming Soon!

In case you didn’t read Monday’s post: I’m launching 3 things within the next 11 days.

This coming Monday, March 1, 2010 comes the free Freedom Fighters e-course/newsletter.

Next Friday, March 5, 2010 (Midnight Eastern Standard Time, using time.gov) comes the How To Live Anywhere eBook. The price starts at just 10 cents and goes up 10 cents after every sale. All money received (+ matching by me) in the first 24 hours will go to third world entrepreneurs via one of my favorite sites: Kiva.org.

Then on Monday March 8, 2010 comes the RidiculouslyExtraordinary.com Over-My-Shoulder-This-Is-What-I’m-Working-On Membership Area. (Catchy name.) This won’t be cheap and I don’t expect to sell too many seats (how is that for honesty? haha), which means you’ll see some things that few others will see. I’ll show you an actual niche project I’m working on using something I call “Product Leasing.” Essentially that’s selling an information product you don’t own and it has nothing to do with affiliate programs.

If you want to be notified of the eBook and the membership area just fill out this form (don’t worry, I hate spam, and you won’t get any from me). BTW, you’ll get a 15 minute head start on the eBook (remember, the price increases after every sale) and a discount on the membership area.










42 COMMENTS

  1. Karol,

    Thanks for the valuable information once again. I will definitely give this a try. I love how you give actual numbers for finding good keywords.

    And BTW I tried selling NBA all star tickets through an adwords campaign. Unfortunately I didn’t make any money. I’m not too sure why yet. I’m still brainstorming on that. My conversion rate of people that came to my site that clicked through to stubhub was ~50%. Oh well. I learned a lot and maybe i can make it work next time.

    Austin

    • Hi Austin,

      Thanks! I think the problem with the NBA All Star tickets is there may not have been exclusivity. I’d imagine it was very easy to get a ticket to Cowboys Stadium for that record crowd and so the StubHub resales probably weren’t very good.

      That said, a 50% clickthrough is great! You did at least a few very important things right to make that happen. Now just build on that.

      Karol

  2. Hi Karol,

    O.k. you did it – I think I have to create some hubs now after reading your awesome step by step breakdown.

    Just a few quick questions regarding the social bookmarking…

    First of all, do you focus on the high page rank sites or take the as many sites as possible route?

    I don’t know if this is an urban legend, but isn’t it possible to get banned from some social sites if you bookmark your own sites? (stumble upon supposedly has such a policy in place)

    Thanks in advance. :-)

    • Hi Marko,

      Great questions. Start with a few of the better trafficked sites and then take it slow (a few per day, or every few days) and you shouldn’t have any problems. And if you’re submitting good content, you have less to worry about.

      Thanks!
      Karol

  3. Thanks Karol, sounds like an interesting concept and though I don’t think I’ll give it a try I still think you can probably help me. Basically I think it’s good to have a broad understanding of business opportunities and how people are making money on the Internet. Your seo tips are good too and I will definitely be following you with interest:)

    Off to read How to spot an opportunity now. You’ve definitely got the winning headlines thing sorted too.

    Hope you mint it and if there’s anything I can help with let me know. I wonder if you can get people to stumble/digg/whatever your hub posts so they get even more traffic…

  4. I am most definitely going to do this.
    I think though that in order to ensure I have quality hubs I will only write them about things I have an interest in/ know about. We don’t wanna waste anyone’s time with useless uniformed rambling, now do we?

    Thanks again Karol. :)

    • Hi Caleb!

      Awesome. Yes, it definitely helps if you focus on topics you know about. Especially in the “writing quality content” department. Let me know how it goes for you!

      Karol

  5. Hello Karol,
    that looks really useful and promising! Thank you for that hint ;)
    I’m going to give it a try, when my university-workload drops a bit in april 2010.

    Will there be any problems with their payout if I don’t have an US bank account?
    Or in another way: Do they support international payment or systems like paypal?

    (This will be my first steps in content-selling, using ad- and affiliate-programs. The content quantity is simply overwhelming at this point! So I wasn’t able to get to that information on my own. :( I hope you could help..)

    Thank you!

    • Hi Nym,

      You’ll have to check with each affiliate program. Some allow international affiliates, some don’t. If you’re really gung-ho, it is possible to get a US address/bank account, but that’s the beyond my scope. I just know people have done it. There is always a way. :)

      Karol

  6. Wow! That was really the quickest reply I can remember. :D
    Thank you again. I’ll give it a try.

    Just to add two positive apects that came to my mind:
    1) As a non-native English speaker, you could use hubpages to improve your language skills.
    Even if you read international news, blogs, wiki-artickes etc., you barely come to writing longer non-profound texts by yourself!

    2) You could also use this to teach yourself something new on purpose.
    Simply choose a topic you don’t have funded knowledge about, but think it would be kind of “good to know”, even if it is not essential for your every-day life.
    Maybe you wouldn’t get into it on your own free will at all…
    Then you could use hubpages as an incentive to do so ;)

    And the positive sideeffect…you could get a nice cash-bonus on top :)

    Thank you.

  7. Karol, i hope blog won’t turn into “how to make money online” kind of blog. I started reading your artiles not for “easy money” but to get inspired by your open mind :) I hope there is still plase on this blog for that kind of content. Cheers! :)

    • Hey Greg,

      No worries. :) I’m very mindful of not turning this blog into a make money online blog. But so many people ask me about it (I get more e-mails about the money topic than anything else) that I have to write about it sometimes. Making money is, after all, a large part of attaining Ridiculously Extraordinary Freedom.

      Thank you for keeping me in check though!

      Karol

  8. Hi Karol,

    I’ve been following your blog for a while now and really enjoy it. The $ portion & non-$ portion are balanced perfectly:)

    About this article, you mentioned that you earned $18 through Adsense for January but that the total for the Hub was $43. I’m a bit confused… are you saying that you use other advertisers besides Adsense? or you write more articles for a hub?

    thanks!
    michelle

    ps I am eagerly awaiting signing up for your members only area!

  9. Hi Karol.
    May be it’s caused by lazy Sunday afternoon but I didn’t understand the concept of the hubs. It doesn’t seem to be an automatic collecting of URLs of articles spread over the Internet. As I understand it’s a portal where people write articles directly.
    Then…
    …how to attract members? People willing to write articles are already doing it on web sites aimed to area of them interest. There are plenty of web pages about cars, animals, cooking, pets, whatever…
    What is the reason these people start to write for me?

    Huge readers base is not the reason. At the beginning the readers base is zero.

    Thanks for your explanation…

    • Hi Rado1 (birth name? ;) ),

      I read your comment twice, but I can’t figure out what you’re asking me. Maybe this will clear it up (I hope): HubPages is a user generated content Web site on a variety of topics. Because it has authority with the search engines it’s fairly easy to get good search engine rankings with your hubs, and as a result, visitors to your hubs. Visitors = cash.

      Thanks,
      Karol

  10. I had to work hard to use my real brain on this one. My lizard brain is screaming uber loud trying to distract me. It took me, what… Three days to actually read through the post? Nonetheless, I’m going to give it a go.

    The hard part will be finding a phrase that I am knowledgeable about, yet people are searching for. I have lots of specialized knowledge and skills that the modern world is trying to make irrelevant and stamp out. I’ve typed in a few phrases and they seem to average 1000 searches per month.

    Dood, this is kind of scary.

    Let’s just say that I work (day-job) in a specialized field that fewer and fewer people can do and it keeps a major form of transportation from crashing and killing several to hundreds of people in a single incident of failure. The people who are searching about it : 480/mo. The people who are searching for “Dog poop disposal” : 1300/mo.

    Apparently, I am in the wrong business. :)

    • Hey Glenn,

      hehe, I’m glad you kicked the Resistance to the curb and figured it out :)

      Finding the keywords is the most critical, time consuming, and (to me) most fun part of the process. Keep at it, you’ll start finding a bunch that you can write about.

      Karol

      • Okay so I think I’m getting too wrapped up in the keyword stuff. Plus, I don’t like it. I’d much rather be writing about something that interests me.

        Until I just DO something, I can’t get the whole context of how the pieces interrelate. I’m going to jump in and fail a bit so I get my feet wet. I’m curious about how the system generates revenue, but not focused on it.

        That being said, I’m either going to chose a keyword phrase that has a low search volume and few competing pages or a huge search volume and an equally huge competing page count – although advertiser competition is “average”.

        You, my friend, have the benefit of experience. Which of these two choices do you think will teach me the most about how the whole thing operates? IE which will give me the most experience for my time?

        • Hey Glenn,

          I’d go with something that has fewer competing pages. With low search volume you won’t make as much (could be $0), but you’ll be able to see how the search rankings work a bit. Going through the whole process is important so, either way, thank you for seeking knowledge and getting uncomfortable!

          Karol

  11. Karol,

    Why do you suggest not putting in affiliate links until after you get traffic?

    And BTW I have my second event that I am going to try sell tickets to planned. Hopefully I can make the money back that I lost on the NBA all star game.

    • Great question Austin! It’s more for internal hubpages traffic. If your hub has too many affiliate links it can be flagged and you’ll get a low hub score. The goal is to provide value, yes? So the affiliate links should be somewhat secondary to providing a good user experience.

      2nd event: nice! Great to know you’re going back at it. One thing to remember: make sure it’s an event that is sold out or hard to get tickets for. :)

  12. Karol,

    My first time here and what an exciting and detailed post. I have an eHow account that I recently started but I hate how secretive they are with their “algorithm” of paying you.

    I really love how you’ve shown how Hubpages shows you exactly what you’re earning. This just might be worth a shot!

    Thanks Karol.

    • Hi Moon,

      You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Hubpages doesn’t show you what you’re earning though. They’re just the publisher. The screen shots are from Adsense and another affiliate program.

      Karol

  13. Hi Karol,

    I know I’m late to the party on this one but having just had a quick scan of all the stuff you just released has inspired me to go back and check this out. I’m looking forward to kicking my plan into action – having a lot of hubs pulling in small amounts that add up to something very worthwhile is very exciting!

  14. […] hat tip should goto Karol of Ridiculously Extraordinary for this one with his article on how to make money with completely free traffic. I’d heard of HubPages with mixed results from a variety of sources, but his article is what […]

  15. Thanks for the article…great stuff. But as with all “easy” ways to make money there’s a hitch – or at least something I don’t understand. It’s all quick and easy – IF you have the keyword to fit your criteria. The tools are easy to use. BUT…find a keyword or phrase with less than 50,000 pages on google? I started with words, then phrases, of things I could easily write about…no luck. Not even close.

    Then I went on to what seem like insane combinations: “aluminum hardwood” nope – well over a million. “milk loons” nearly 600,000. “woolen cars” getting closer – nearly 400,000.

    And these are absurd phrases.

    What am I missing?

    • Hi David,

      Thanks! What you’re “missing” is that you’re not going deep enough. Keyword research isn’t something that you’ll figure out in 2 minutes. It takes hours, days, weeks, months to get really good. The first step is opening up the Keyword Tool and getting to work. :) There are an incredible amount of phrases with less than 50,000 competing pages.

      Karol

  16. Karol,

    I certainly didn’t expect to learn it in two minutes – though I have been accused of being impatient before!

    But seriously, that why I tried the absurd phrases…I assume finding absurd things not well covered wold be easy…and that the tougher, profitable middle-ground is indeed challenging. The surprise to me is being unable to go to the absurd uncovered end right away.

    Can I ask – how many words typically in a useful phrase? Can you, do you, search based on exact match (with quotes) or not? Just a couple of hints would be fantastic!

  17. I finally got around to trying this out — I know, I’m late to the game! I decided to create a hub that I wish had existed when I bought my MacBook Pro: http://hubpages.com/hub/Top-5-Cases-for-MacBook-Pro

    I have a question, though, if it’s not too late for your attention on this! You call for unchecking the “commercial” checkbox and setting Ads to “Medium.” Wouldn’t that reduce your income? It seems most of the hubs I see leave it on High. Any thoughts?

    Thanks for this great tip!

    • Rob, dude! You are not late to the game. You are IN the game! Thank you and congrats! :)

      I’ve found the Medium setting to be optimal for getting affiliate sales. The High setting had too many ads and detracted for the sales I actually wanted to make. :)

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