Hey there! Thanks for checking out my site.
My name is Jeremy and most of my friends call me Jam.
In the spring of 2016 I joined an awesome community called Wealthy Affiliate that teaches you how to grow and build out websites that then make money with something called affiliate marketing.
Having done this for a little while now and made a little bit of money, there are some things that I wish I knew when I first started and hopefully you can learn from my mistakes (experience!).
Making money online is not hard but it does require a lot of work, I guess that is why more people don’t do it.
I grew up in a college town in my father’s BBQ restaurant. Which we now have two locations and I am still very much involved with the family business.
I went to college and got a degree in accounting but after a few long months, I quickly realized public accounting was not for me.
That is when I decided to come back to try and help grow the family business.
We opened a second location and have continued growing our catering operation so that it is now almost a third of our sales and is like a third entity of its own.
I married my high school sweet heart and we have a light-hearted little boy who was born at the end of 2012 with another child on the way!
My Online Journey
So, like I mentioned, in 2016 I was looking for something to create passive income after reading the famous 4-Hour Workweek.
During this time we were going out on the boat a lot and there were several weekends where we would be talking (probably after a few beers!) about dropping everything and moving to another country to live a simpler life.
Maybe we were all feeling a little burnout at work at the same time.
Anyway, my mother-in-law (who was all about it) made an obvious statement “what would we do for money?”
Obviously, selling everything would be the easy part. But how would we sustain? I definitely wasn’t trying to open another restaurant or any store for that matter because of the time investment.
So what did I do? The same thing everyone does when they have a question: I asked Google!
I searched things like:
“how to make money online”
“how to make money abroad”
“how to make money in ecuador”
Ironically, I landed on someone’s blog (just tried to find it again with no luck) who had moved his family to another country to live an expat life. They made money by blogging!
Now I’m Really Curious
On the resources page is where I found the link for the 4-Hour Workweek book and for some reason it just jumped out at me.
So, I clicked through the link, probably paid him $.60 from Amazon and a few months later I’m trying to do the same thing.
I flew through the book, so fast that I then re-read it a second time right away and much slower, taking notes.
After putting some 80/20 principles to work, I began searching for the way I was going to create passive income.
In my opinion, Tim (author of 4 Hour Workweek), over simplifies some of the ways you can make money online, as I started looking I realized it was still going to take some hard work and time to build this income stream.
I came across Pat Flynn’s podcast and after listening to a few where he just explains what passive income is, the hook was setting deeper.
Not to mention he posts income reports, he’s only making over $160k a month! Yea, a month….
One of the things he said really stuck with me, the traffic on the internet is so much that you just need a small piece of the action to make money.
If you can get just 100 people to pay you $10 a month, there’s a $1,000. Who wouldn’t like an extra $1,000 a month. Especially that you don’t directly trade time for.
There are over 3.5 billion searches per day on Google….you have to like the odds in that numbers game???!
I was sold.
Now I Just Needed Some Training.
I was very close to pulling the trigger on a niche site training program when I found Wealthy Affiliate (through someone’s blog of course, who now makes $175 a year from my annual premiums!).
The reason I decided to go there was they offered a free 7 day trial. Sweet! So I was going to make sure I flew through several training steps in that week.
After that they then offered a 50% discount for your first month and a reasonable monthly fee after that.
What the hell, I thought, I will go hard for three months and if I don’t like what’s happening I’m only out a $100 or so and my time.
As I dove into the training I quickly saw how thorough it was and had no problem paying the fee to get started after the trial.
However, where I messed up was thinking I would just stick around for 2-3 months and after I knew what I was doing I would cancel. Maybe if I could have spent 40 hours a week that could have worked but I still had a full time job so I was shooting for 15 hours a week.
This led me to host my websites at Bluehost (again seeing other bloggers recommend and probably clicked through someone’s affiliate link and they got paid, seeing the trend here?)
So now I’m paying for hosting in two places and only using one, mistake ?!
After a couple months WA was adding some things to their platforms and after a spending way too many hours trying to fix my site (Bluehost doesn’t help with ignorance) when I broke it, I decided to move one of the sites to Wealthy Affiliate.
My Google pagespeed scores jumped 30% instantly! I guess there was a reason the package I chose at Bluehost was only $4 a month!
Then I decided to move all three sites at the time over and the WA support team did it for me!
It was around this time I decide to go annual which saves almost 40% off the monthly price, mistake #2!
I obviously would have saved some money had I went straight to annual after the free trial but I doubt too many people do this unless they personally know someone inside and are fully ready to commit.
It didn’t matter, I was seeing steady improvements and I was committed to making it work, especially after sending them $350!
Where I’m At Today
I finally felt competent enough to start this site after making a little money over the last couple years.
One thing I am not a huge fan of is WA encourages you to promote Wealthy Affiliate (which is what this site is for) if you can’t decide on a niche.
But how can you teach others to make money online when you probably haven’t yet?
Some people have seen success doing this but I wonder how many people might quit after a few months without seeing results.
Afterall, MMO is a highly competitive niche.
That is why I decided to just do the regular training with a niche of my choice.
Finally, the third site I created started seeing results.
The first site I created starting getting traffic quickly but the only way I saw to monetize it was with Adsense, which would take a TON of traffic to make any kind of real money.
The second site had some high paying affiliate programs but after pumping out several articles, it was really struggling to get traffic like my first site.
I realized then I needed something product oriented that people were looking to buy so I got on Amazon’s top seller list and Google trends.
I found a niche with potential…but now this means I’m starting from scratch. Oh well, I was hungry for this to work out.
So I did it and decided I would publish 3 articles for the new site to every one article of the other two sites.
I made my first sale on Amazon in the third month! This validated my decision so I then decided to put the first two sites on the back burner and focus on this new one.
I wouldn’t make another sale for another 6 weeks but then it just started taking off. Just like the training said it would.
Sales doubled for several months in a row before leveling off around $200 a month.
Around that time I took a class on link building which brought back the growth.
In November of 2017 I had my first 4 figure month! So now I’m shooting for a $5,000 month.
We shall see if creating this site was justified ?.