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Hello. Total Noob here - I need help!


Hello all,

My name is Adam. I live in Washington State with my wife and 2 children. I have been looking for a way to earn money from home for a long time now. My wife and I both work different shifts and have very little time to spend together. Family time is difficult to come by. I realized that working a traditional job working for someone else was not going to allow me to enjoy my family the way that I want to.
I have bought into more get rich quick schemes than I like to admit. I'm tired of all of the promises with nothing gained but a lighter wallet afterwards.
I ran into affiliate marketing when I decided to try to create my own Yahoo online business. I was not successful with that because I had difficulty sourcing the products that I was trying to sell. It seemed that my competition always knew where to find better deals.
I read a number of books written by web-business gurus as well as a couple on affiliate marketing.
The one that I read recommended building multiple mini-sites to promote your affiliate programs and just use pay-per-click ads for marketing. He recommended building a opt-in list etc. I wasn't sure how to create a mini site and had very little money, so I thought I might skip the website portion and simply place my affiliate link directly on the pay-per-click search engines. I'm sure you are all aware that this is not wise. Sixty dollars later without a single sale convinced me that I was doing something wrong as well.
Anyway, sorry to make this so long. I am starting from scratch here. I am thinking about starting a content site with SiteBuildIt. I don't know what theme I'm going to pick yet. I don't have much time for hobbies, so I'm afraid I have very little when it comes to passions to create a site around.
I was wondering if any of you have any pointers for me. Also, does anyone have a successful content site that I can take a look at for some inspiration?




<b><font size=2>In Memoriam - Loyal Administrator<
Welcome to 5 Star, Thor76.

Many people have been down the same route that you have. It can be a very frustrating experience.

There are so many different ways to try to tackle your problem. But the first thing to remember is to try to be patient even if you are a little frustrated.

I think a content site might be the best possible idea for you since you have had some bad experiences. The one reason I am saying that is because if you come up with a good content site you can use AdSense. This Google program works very well with content sites. You will be able to start making some money and that will help encourage you to work that much harder to try to do even better.

It is very possible to make money with affiliate programs but they could take a little more effort on your part and right now you probably want to make things as easy as possible.

When it comes to a site, think about something you like, something you know something about or something you would like to know more about. There has to be something.

Come up with a name for the site and register it with a dependable registrar that doesn't charge a large amount. As an example Go Daddy charges $8.95 a year. There are some that charge $30 a year and more.

Make sure you have a dependable host. It would be a good idea to avoid free hosting. You can find a reliable host at reasonable prices.

Try to produce some good original content and keep adding to the content. Get listed in some of the free directories.

Apply for AdSense Put AdSense code on your pages.

Keep adding content. Keep your visitors in mind and do as much as you can to make the site as good as possible so that they will want to return as well as tell others about your site. There will also be people who will like your quality site and link to it because they feel it would be of use or interest to their visitors.

Ask questions in a forum such as 5 Star. There are many people who are willing to help you. Don't hesitate to ask questions so you can receive the help that you need.

When you have your site ready, you might also post here at 5 Star and ask for a site review. Members can give you some idea of possible changes you could make to improve your site.

There are lots of things you can learn about AdSense to help improve your AdSense results. But make sure you don't violate any of their rules.

I am not saying that AdSense is the only way to make money. It is just that it is often an easier way for people to get started showing some good earnings. But you should also consider other sources.

The most important thing is to get started and stick with it. Once things start to improve you will feel much better.

What I have given you is one approach worth trying. Other people might suggest a different approach. What I have suggested is something that can work and isn't going to cost you a lot of money in order to try to make money.

If you create a quality site with lots of good content, you are going to get listed in the search engines and get a lot of free traffic. Of course there is a lot involved in getting good position in the search engines and that is something you can ask about when you get to that point.

Do some thinking and come up with an idea for a site. It is important that it be related to something that you are willing to spend time on adding content to it if it is a content site. See what ideas you can come up with and then get started on your new site.

Linda Buquet

Hi Adam,

Welcome to 5 star and thanks so much for sharing your personal story. It will help us to help you better.

Larwee is right, so I hope it makes you feel a little better to know you aren't alone and that what you have gone through is VERY common. So please don't kick yourself! Sitesell is an excellent way to get started because they give you the tools AND the training and support.

Picking a good niche, something you hopefully know about or want to learn about and can get passionate about is important advice like Larwee said. You need to find a niche that is also in demand and could be profitable. That's the hard part.

I'm getting ready to blog about some great FREE tools to help you find good high profit niches next week. But maybe I'll make a forum post about it today so you can see and use the resources.

Also scan the other intros and the general affiliate forum for other n00bs like you that asked the question of how to get started and you will find lots of other words of wisdom.

I'll come back and give you a link, once I post the niche finding tools.

Hope this helps and best of luck!

Anyone else have any suggestions for Adam?


Thank you for your help. I appreciate the quick responses and great information that you have shared. I was wondering if anyone had an opinion as to whether I should use SiteBuildIt for my first content site, or is it better to use lower cost alternatives for content sites. I will soon have a few hundred dollars to spare to spend on SiteBuildIt, but I wonder if my money is better spent on something else when it comes to building a content site.

Also, does anyone have any links to good content sites that are making good money? I would like to look at one as an example to get me started.

Thanks again,



<b><font size=2>In Memoriam - Loyal Administrator<
Yes, you can create a very successful content site without SiteBuildIt. Many people have and have done great. They did it before there was a SiteBuildIt as well as when SiteBuildIt was available.

At the same time, SiteBuildIt can be helpful to some people. It works under the assumption that the user doesn't know anything about building an online business. But it can also help the experienced person by making things easier.

Since I mentioned AdSense is often very good for content sites and you asked to see some examples of some content sites that are making good money, probably the best example would be the Google AdSense case studies.

At the present time they have 13 sites. You can look at these sites and also read their success stories. Here is the link

Linda Buquet

Thor76, affiliate don't typically like to share their sites on forums because it can result in site stealers, idea theft or increased competition in their niche. So I can't share any of my affiliate's sites with you.

Just pick a popular big name merchant and do a Google search for XYZ merchant coupons example coupons or Zappos coupons and you'll find lots of affiliate sites. Not that you need to have a coupon site at all - just that that's an easy way to get to the affiliate sites for the merchants.

I like Larwee's suggestion too. I would look at those Adsense examples.

Sitebuildit is great especially if you are just learning and need a system to follow. Until you can afford it you could start out with a free blog at MSN Spaces or any number of free blog hosts. Just check to sure affiliate links aren't against the rules. I mentioned MSN because for awhile I was seeing some very high ranked affiliate KW pages coming from there.

If you don't need a track to run on and if you already have Front Page, I recommend the affiliate templates from They are very inexpensive and already optimized for the search engines. You can get a nice generic all purpose template like the one on the top of this page for 37.|119|&cat=114
So the site building a techy stuff is all done. You just add your text, images and links. But you need to have Front page or another editor and know a little HMTL and CSS hopefully, just enough to get by.