Monday, June 29, 2009


If you're anything like me, you have the interest and desire to niche blog, but maybe lack the technical know-how to really take a stab at it. Yet you keep hearing about all these people making money, thousands of dollars in fact, with niche websites. And who doesn't want to make thousands of dollars?

Niche blogging is the perfect business. Set your own hours. Work at your own pace. Take days off and still make money. Like taking candy from a baby, easy peasy.

Sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? That's because what people think they know about niche blogging is mostly a romanticized myth.

Niche blogging requires a good knowledge base of internet marketing and web development. Plus, you have to be able to write, in quantity, on any given subject. And spend hours fine-tuning your site promotion strategy so your niche ends up in the top spot on Google.

I expect it will take me a year to amass the skills I need and begin earning any amount of money. Niche blogging is definitely not a get rick quick scheme. It's a long term strategic campaign that requires a lot of discipline because about the only fun part of niche blogging is collecting the pay check. The actual work is tedious, repetitive, and dull.

If you have the time and don't mind the work, niche blogging might work out for you.

There are some things I've done in the last 2 months that I think will help me as I learn to niche blog. I'm listing them below, so you can follow in my footsteps. Remember, this is basic stuff for the very beginner. If you sometimes refer to yourself as a luddite, this tutorial is for you! If you're the one making fun of the luddites, this is probably too simplistic for you.

1. I wrote for ehow and practiced my budding SEO writing skills in their sandbox. With SEO, it's much better to make all your mistakes at the expense of someone else's adsense account than it is to trash your adsense rating with Google (meaning they devalue the ads they place on your site and basically think you suck and treat you accordingly).

2. Read all the free information I could find about ehow. I also bought several ehow ebooks, which are helpful, but the same information is available for free if you google hard enough.

3. I learned how to use the Google keyword tool.

4. I lurked on the ehow forums and other message boards across the internet pertaining to SEO and internet writing. I even copy pasted important tidbits of info into a word document.

5. I wrote for Demand Studios which helped expand my repertoire as a web content writer and gave me a good grasp as to what is acceptable quality for web content writing.

Two months of 1 through 5 and I signed up for an online seminar on niche blogging, bought 7 domains and am actively building niche content. Stay tuned to see what happens next.

Later this week I'll have a post on the craft of writing good web content for all the non-writers out there.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


Things are chugging along. I'm evolving as I learn more about writing web content. I don't want to write for ehow, I want to be ehow.

To do that, I need to get into niche blogging. Which I have started to formally pursue this past week. I'm working on 7 sites with a potential income of $1000. The first site should go live this week.

It is ALOT of work and I am wary as to whether or not I can be one of the lucky ones making thousands of dollars a month. Partly, because I'm not raking it in at ehow.

However, I am making money with ehow and grossing more each month, just not enough to write home about or keep the toddler in diapers. There are ehow beginners doing better than me. I'm not sure what the problem is. I think my SEO technique has been a little heavy-handed and spammy, which probably hurt me. I also wonder if I'm just not gifted when it comes to topic selection. I think I'm doing well, picking hot topics, but then the article turns out to be a dud.

My strengths as I see them though are 1) I learn fast  2) I know how to work hard 3) I can write my own content (pity the niche bloggers who can't write!) and 4)I have very little to lose. I think I'm embarking on the niche blogging adventure with less than $100 investment. So it's mostly my time and a little bit of money at stake.

I'll keep you informed!

Monday, June 22, 2009


A quickie to give you breaking news on major changes in the way we make money online...

This is going to be getting a lot of buzz in the blog-o-sphere. Especially for mommy bloggers who make a living off their blogs.

On the one hand, if all the FTC is going to require is disclosure, that's fine, but if they start policing things beyond that, it will be a problem.

The proposed regulations and comments on it are found here.

I do have ads on this site, but to date, have not utilized any affliates nor have I received financial compensation for any products or websites mentioned in my posts.

Saturday, June 20, 2009


A status update...

I seem to be doing better than anticipated with my goals. I am averaging around $100 a week somehow.

Ehow ended up paying me $100 in contest winnings which was cool (or maybe I was on the homepage more than once and didn't know). However, residuals from ehow have been slow to build although I think it's still early yet. I added 10 articles so far this month (my second full month) and should make the $10 pay out minimum. Whether I make more than that, I can't predict.

But I'll keep adding articles and hope I start to get the right mix of topics, information and keywords.

Demand Studios is going well. They now allow writers to snag new assignments as fast as they can submit them. So writers are no longer constrained by a 10 article limit and editorial review times. However, the current scuttlebutt is that rejection rates of 3% or higher and high rewrite rates can result in termination. Of course this is all secondhand from terminated writers. Demand Studios doesn't actually spell out what their standards are although that is supposed to change.

As for my private clients, I let them go. I do not have a lot of free time and I need long lead times. Demand Studios gives me a week, ehow is whenever I have time, but private clients want everything now, now, now and they pay less than Demand Studios. Maybe when the baby is older I can dip my toe in again, but right now I need a better work-life balance and that means sticking to DS.

I'm also debating if I want to get into niche blogging. I'm just not sure I'm sold on the services out there that promise they can teach me how to get rich on the internet.

Thursday, June 4, 2009


Okay, first things first, I think I am probably the slowest web content writer on the planet. Actually, it's likely the active toddler that needs wrangling that is capping my income. The reason I say this is I've seen some income reporting threads on forums with people posting income in the thousands of dollars. By comparison, I'm making pennies.

So, income so far... drumroll please...

Demand Studios: $415 total to date (started late April).

Ehow: $18.08 to date with 35 articles. Plus I won the Home & Garden contest which should garner  $50 in prize money. So official ehow total is $68.08 and growing.

Private Clients: $100

Infobarrel: I wrote 1 article and haven't checked back to see if I've made any money. Nor have I posted any other articles, which I should do something about that soon.

Suite 101: Nothing, I'm having some editor troubles there, which is disappointing.

Started 2 niche blogs with zero earnings (although I haven't actually checked my adsense accounts to see if I've made any money).

Currently I am not making the $100 a week target I had set for myself. Partly because there was almost no work on Demand Studios for several weeks in May and the editors forgot to take their Xanax or smoke their weed (something!) and went off the deep end. (If you google you'll find some entertaining message board threads where writers vent some steam re: DS editors.) So I stayed away for a while and focused on creating ad revenue content.

I looked at other upfront pay opportunities, but didn't find anything that was a good fit with my very limited schedule. Many upfront pay companies have high production quotas and/or tight article deadlines, which is difficult for me as I'm at the mercy of the toddler--I never know how much time I'll have to write or how much sleep I will get.

Just to disavow anyone of the idea that this online writing stuff is easy peasy, please note that, for the last 6 weeks or so, I have literally been writing every spare minute and staying up way too late trying to get things done.  I'm exhausted, but I do feel like I'm seeing some results for my hard work. Now the question is can I take it to the next level?