|Maybe youíve been wondering how to go about setting up a niche web site. Well, hereís a quick little article that will show you how to create your very own affiliate web site. Please note: this is the cheat sheet version. There is a lot more information you should learn about this subject before you get started.
Step 1. Pick a Niche Subject
This may be the hardest part of your web site project. Thereís literally tons of subjects to choose from. People are interested in a variety of things Ė from parrots to pilots. You donít have to necessarily pick something youíre interested in, but it helps.
Youíre more likely to do a better job at building your site when you have some interest in the subject matter. Itís like taking a high school or college class. Some subjects are more interesting than others. Make sure you choose something that a reasonable amount of people are actually searching for online and want to find out more information about.
Hereís a free tool that will help you check the popularity of specific subjects: (http://www.nichebot.com)
Step 2. Do Keyword Research
This is a part that many people skip. Iíve made that mistake myself and suffered the consequences Ė a failed web site. Even though itís nice to think that you can write anything you want and have total creative freedom, not using keyword rich content is a BIG mistake.
Iíd rather lose some creative freedom and attract visitors to my site, than have a lot of flowery prose that zero people will see. You MUST include targeted keywords in your web site copy. Also, make sure you use your targeted keywords in the upper third portion of your web site pages. This is also called optimizing your web site for the search engines. Use the Overture Keyword Tool for research:
Note: keywords must be relevant to the THEME (subject) of your site. Be careful not to over use them. Search engines donít like keyword SPAM.
Step 3. Get A Domain Name
Having a unique domain name is important, although some donít agree. However, a unique domain name makes your site look more professional and trustworthy to visitors. I use BuyDomains (http://www.buydomains.com). They are not the cheapest, but I stick with them because I like their easy interface and good customer service. Nameboy (http://www.nameboy.com) is also good.
Step 4. Write Keyword Rich Content
This may be a hard step for those of you who donít consider yourselves writers. But, writing web site copy is not as hard as it seems. Just think of it as having a conversation with a friend about a product or service youíre really enthusiastic about.
Donít think you can extol the benefits of your subject? Tune your TV into QVC or one of the other shopping networks to see how they can spend several minutes talking about the benefits of all kinds of mundane products. This is what youíll be doing for your web site.
Your copy should feature a good balance of friendliness and professionalism. Remember, youíre passing along useful information to your visitor. Put yourself in their shoes. What would you want to know about xyz subject if you were them? Now, write that down. Donít forget to sprinkle targeted keywords throughout your copy. I print out a list of them to use for my sites.
If you simply canít put words onto the page and find yourself staring at a blank screen, then visit Internet marketing forums like Willie Crawfordís (http://www.williecrawford.com/cgi-bin/index.cgi) for suggestions on finding writers. Or, visit Elance (http://www.elance.com).
Step 5. Build Your Web Site
Ok. Youíve created your copy. Now itís time to build the actual physical web site. I use Homestead (http://www.homestead.com), but there are many good point and click web site builders out there.
You have a lot of creative freedom on how you want your site to look (I prefer black copy on white backgrounds with photos), but remember that people are looking for attractive, easy-to-navigate sites with useful information.
Step 6. Sign Up for Matching Affiliate Programs
Youíve created a web site about xyz subject. Now look for affiliate vendors who perfectly match the theme of your site. Integrate your affiliates attractively into your web site copy. Donít confuse your visitors by giving them too many choices.
If you want to list a lot of affiliates on the same page, you can create a helpful ďresource guideĒ page.
Step 7. Include Google Adsense Ads
Google has a great program for web site owners who wish to make a little extra money for simply displaying google ads on their web site. Itís easy to sign up and free. Just visit google
(http://www.google.com/ads) and sign up for their Adsense program. Theyíll give you some html code to copy and paste on your site.
While google decides which ads will actually appear on your site, you can decide how the google ads will look Ė choose colors, borders, etc. and where to put them on your pages.
Step 8. Find Link Partners
I found out that exchanging links with other web site owners is a MUST if you want to improve your search engine rankings. Google especially will consider your site more relevant if your site has other sites linking to it. Also the ad copy from other sites, if relevant, can add more valuable keyword content to your own site.
I use Linkmarket (http://www.linkmarket.net) to find credible web sites to exchange links with. Itís free to join.
Step 9. Write Articles to Promote Your Site
Oh oh. Hereís that writing thing again. Well, you better get used to it, because writing articles like this one (normally your articles will be about the subject matter of your web site) will help give your affiliate web site much needed exposure. It doesnít matter if you write them yourself or hire others (ghostwriters) to write them for you.
Youíll find that the best Internet marketers all write articles to promote themselves, their newsletters, and products and services. Remember, thereís a reason the Internet is called the ďinformationĒ super highway.
After writing your articles, you can post them to an article directory site like Article City (http://www.articlecity.com). People can easily find your articles to use as free content for their sites.
Now, I suggest that you print this article out and refer to it often as you go about creating the next great affiliate web site. Good luck!
About the author:
Hereís an example of a niche site I set up for job seekers:
More on niche marketing here: http://url123.com/mn6dk
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