RIMC Digital Marketing Conference Iceland

RIMC 19, Reykjavik Internet Marketing Conference

So below are the slides from my Presentation over at RIMC in Reykjavik a few weeks back in the video below, a great Digital Marketing conference and a place I’ve always wanted to see, so if you get the chance to go to RIMC its well worth going too.

Hi, guys. Just gonna go through the talk that I did over at the digital marketing conference in Iceland, which was a great event. I had never been to Iceland before so it was my first venture over there. The event is called the Reykjavik Internet Marketing Conference and the hashtag was RIMC19.

Great event, great people. First trip to Iceland. I didn’t get to see the Blue Lagoon or any of the good stuff over there because I was only over for about 30 hours, but I will definitely go back. It is an amazing place and there were some great people over there as well and, yeah, for sure, definitely I’ll go back.

But my talk over at RIMC was about affiliate marketing and my journey, some of the mistakes that I’d made along the way.

I was introducing myself just as a UK-based SEO consultant, doing SEO training, affiliate marketing, and a small agency owner. I can also be seen in SEMrush Webinars and various other events such as SearchLeeds, BrightonSEO, the Chiang Mai SEO Conference which was amazing, over in Thailand. So I do speak at a lot of events and try and share as much knowledge as I possibly can that I picked up along the way.

But, where do you start with affiliate marketing? So, you can do private affiliate marketing. Private affiliate marketing is getting yourself affiliate deals with the likes of SEMrush who have the BeRush program. You can earn up to 40% recurring monthly revenue for all the subscription sales that come through SEMrush.

So you can promote SEMrush to the hilt and get 40% recurring every month, which is an amazing deal for what is actually a great tool. So you can make money there quite easily. There are also various other tools out there, such as NinjaOutreach, who offer you 20% monthly recurring. Again, not too shabby. And you’ve got the Authority Hacker course, where, again, you can enrol as an affiliate and make some money. You can get up to $990 per sale promoting their courses, so it’s good, substantial commissions through private affiliate deals that you can get out there.

It’s quite easy for me to do the private affiliate thing because I speak at events. I’ve got a big mailing list, I’ve got a lot of contacts, I do lots of meet-ups and I’ve got a decent social media following. So that can all turn into money relatively easily, and that’s something anyone can do.

You can also look at private affiliates such as Booking.com, where they’ve over two million hotels and properties that you can promote to make yourself some decent revenue through the Booking.com affiliate program. Again, it’s something I’ve got. I didn’t start from scratch.

There was a business out there called Von Essen Hotels, which is the website you can see in front of you, which is my website. You can see there that the guy has a Wikipedia page, and he sold his hotels for millions and millions of pounds back whenever it was he sold them.

So a very successful guy sold his website for millions of pounds and he just let his domain expire. Massive mistake. So he’d done SEO, had good rankings, a great reputation, everything else. That’s something, obviously, you can jump on top of. You can grab these domain names, an expired domain name, rank it well.

So I rank for over 648 keywords, got some links and stuff like that. So I didn’t start from scratch, and I was able to quickly scale that website up. It’s got a lot of referring domain names. As I say, you can start doing that. So looking at expired domain names to get yourself up there is one way of doing it, so you don’t have to start from scratch.



You can also start from scratch if you want. But, then you’ve no backlink profile, you’ve no real quick way of getting any kind of traffic to the website. A lot of people are always desperate to get away from clients and all that kind of stuff, so you’re always looking for that headstart, and I think using expired domain names is certainly a good way to do that.

However, starting from scratch, this is a mistake that I made. I started a business called vapourinfusion.co.uk a number of years ago. Now, I’m a non-smoker. I was just doing research, good at SEO, knew how to do research. So I thought, “I’m going to see what type of search volume vape and e-cigs and all that kind of got. “You see for vape alone, it gets 90,000 monthly searches, which is great. It had a lot of volume so I thought, “This is the next big thing, let’s do it.”


So, I threw together a WordPress website, plugged with WooCommerce, plugged in. Found myself a drop-shipper. Now, for anyone who doesn’t know what a drop-shipper is, you basically set up a website and you can sell products on it and there will be someone else who fulfils the orders, known as a drop-shipper, who will do it at a wholesale cost, and they supply everything to the customer and I keep the profit.

Then, we started to hit some problems. Payment for order 1289 was reversed because of a buyer complaint. This particular guy had bought five lots of the 10 mill Hangsen E-liquids. Now, the drop-shipper basically said, “We don’t have Hangsen Flavorless left in stock,” so they sent Jax instead. But, that’s all good and well, he sent something else out to the customer. He didn’t ask the customer, he just took it upon himself to send the stuff out.

What we done, was then had the customer reversing payments, saying that they didn’t get what they wanted and all that kind of stuff. Now, it is hard enough with e-cigs and vape and all that kind of stuff, because you could only take payment through PayPal. You couldn’t do any paid search and you couldn’t do any paid social. I’m sure many of you will know if you take payments through PayPal, the clients can reverse payments quite easily, and that can prove to be a bit of a problem.

So do your research, because I didn’t do any research and I found out that people could reverse payments. My drop-shipper was just sending out stuff willy-nilly and the money was just getting taken right back out of my hands.

So it wasn’t a sustainable model and I failed miserably because I hadn’t done any research, hadn’t looked at the pros and the cons of the business, and there was more cons than pros. As a result, I had to end up throwing it all in the bin. But, what people don’t realize is I probably spent six to nine months ranking that website for everything I could and it didn’t work. So thrown in the bin, nine months’ worth of my time and effort gone.

Now, I do have successful E-commerce businesses online who do drop-shipping. That’s one there for the 3rd of March to the 3rd of April, 2019. You can see the revenue in the bottom right-hand side. That’s a nice revenue, obviously, I don’t get to keep it all, there’s a lot of costs and stuff like that in that particular industry.

So that’s the overall turnover, it’s not what the products cost. I’ve got drop-shipper fees, everything else to pay for. But, it is a good successful business model, so you can do drop-shipping successfully, but make sure you do your research.

You can buy and sell businesses online as well if you do not want to start from scratch. You can buy any type of website out there, whether that’s Amazon Affiliate, a drop-shipping website, a SaaS tool, or whatever it may be, you can buy them on empireflippers.com and various other websites. Some of the websites sell for millions of pounds.

There’s other websites. this particular website that I’m showing you, list price is 1.160 million, and that’s a 38 times multiple of its monthly profit. Now, in order to see that, you can place a deposit and check the URL, check the proof of earnings and traffic, and all that kind of stuff. So you can do that on Empire Flippers. And it’s a fully refundable deposit.

They do take 15% for their fee and advertising and everything. But, the multiplier for a private sale is normally a lot less, which is 20% to 25% times the monthly revenue. The last website I showed you on Empire Flippers had a 37 or a 38 times multiplier. So there are various options. Empire Flippers is a great option. There are credible websites, they’re all researched, checked out and everything else, and well worth the 15% fee.

However, if you want to start at the real bottom end of the scale, you can go onto Facebook Groups like the SEO Marketplace, where you’ve got guys selling websites for 850 quid, and it only makes $34 a month, but there’s probably not enough content, not enough links on there. So there are great opportunities on there for websites from a couple of hundred pounds to a couple of thousand pounds. Anything above that, you want to go to Empire Flippers or any of these other marketplaces, which are well experienced in selling businesses online.

Now, I’ve bought a wee website, a golf website, which is golfgearhub.com. Nice, plain, simple website promoting golf products. Very, very simple. It had a lot of articles on it already that I didn’t provide. There was one mistake in this particular business. So I bought the Amazon Affiliate website because I kept hearing everyone saying that Amazon was amazing and you could make some real good money on there. So I dived in, didn’t really do any research again.

You’ll see there, on the Amazon website, it’s basically got links to the products with my Amazon Affiliate link in there, which seems to be nice and easy. You can see the kind of URL search string there, which has greatgolfsite-20 in it. That’s quite easy to do. However, when you’re getting links from Amazon, you get three options. You get html, standard link, and short link.

The guy I bought the website from actually used short links, which was something similar to what you can see on this screen, which is fine for him. The link still end up going to his affiliate link.

But, when I’m going on to things like beta search and replace, they change over all the affiliate links quite easily and quite quickly. I can’t do it. So I had to manually go through the whole website changing every link on the website, including all the tables, all the pictures, and every other link on their website, which was a tedious job.

So when you’re buying an Amazon Affiliate website, make sure the person’s not used an Amazon URL short, because that was a big pain in the ass for me, and took me a lot of time and effort to do it. I could’ve put that out to a V or someone in the office, but I wanted to feel the pain myself and understand how the full website worked, and the whole concept worked. So it was painful for me.

But, I bought the website, and you can see it’s grown over the last year. It ranks for over 7,600 keywords. It gets decent traffic. Out of the searches and keywords that it ranks for, over a thousand of them on page one. So that’s what’s driving in traffic. Obviously, that traffic can still be a lot better, the website can still make a lot more money, and it doesn’t make great money. The website’s technically sound, obviously, it’s got a good site score, GTmetrix I could be adding. Put some cash into improve that.

Done site audits and the likes of rushing stuff like that, and eliminated again, so it’s got a good foundation, the website. Certain things there that I could be tweaking up, and it’s something I will be tweaking up as we go.

But, the Amazon Affiliate fee rates are not great. So this is something I want to highlight. The fees can be anything between 1% and 12%, depending on what you’re actually selling. That’s something that has dropped twice in the past few years. So a lot of people are off a bit, the kind of fees that you’re getting for selling Amazon products.

So my particular website at the moment makes about $800 a month, which is not bad, not too bad. It’s moving up in the right direction. But, when I’ve got content ad, links to acquire, and various other things that probably cost me in terms of money, more than what the website earns. It’s not a viable business option, because I’m only getting 5% on a lot of the sales. So although I can rank a website, I can make it get traffic, and all that kind of stuff. Amazon is not always the best option.

Now, I’ve got to buy links. As you see, you can buy them from moneyhut.co.uk/, or dfylinks.com. I can reach out to guys in the Philippines using onlinejobs.ph.

They do some content work at a much lower cost. PeoplePurveyor, Upwork, all of these kind of websites to try and get stuff done at an affordable price, because essentially, I’m only earning $800 bucks, right? And I don’t really wanna be spending more than $800 bucks on a website that doesn’t make that. So it’s got to pay for itself. So there are options available if I do want to scale that up. People will often tell you that Amazon may or may not work.

Now, this is a website called gearhungry.com. This is something that’s been scaled up in a massive way, so it’s got a lot of backlinks, and you’ll see the backlinks graph going up. You’ll also see the sheer traffic going up as well. This particular person ranks for over 500,000 keywords, and they nearly get a million hits a month. So outrageous growth there. I’m sure a website like that will be doing some decent money on Amazon. But, if you’ve not got that money to throw at it, you can also use the likes of Rev.com.

Rev.com, you can go on there and transcribe videos into content, which is quite easy to do. So you can take nice videos about the product, or whatever it may be, and transcribe it into unique content for a dollar a minute. Now, I was speaking with, who was sat in front of me when I was speaking at this conference.

We done a SEMrush toolbox webinar, and I could’ve transcribed it all, now I didn’t transcribe the whole webinar, but I could’ve transcribed an hour of nearly talk, which that would’ve been about 30,000 words. That would’ve been a great blog post as well if I chopped it all up. What I actually done was just go over my part of the tool, and got that transcribed. So it was like 15 minutes, and that worked out probably 3,000 or 4,000 keywords. Obviously, I was just demonstrating the tool. But, that’s a quick easy way to get low cost content if you are working within a budget.

Now, as I say, I can really monetize the golf website that well, because of the low Amazon Affiliate commissions. So my plan for this was to flip everything on to AliExpress, all the products will be fulfilled by AliExpress, and I’ll probably get between 30% and 35%, rather than the 5% I’m getting from Amazon. So I’m getting the traffic, I’ve got the rankings. How can I monetize that? I’m not gonna stick with Amazon because it is not financially viable to do so. So I’ve got to go to AliExpress and make sure that I use the plug-in and everything else.

Then, what I’ll do is monetize that website and then I will look to sell on. So I can go on to Empire Flippers, once the website is making a lot more money, and then try and sell it for 38 times the monthly revenue. So at present, if it’s making 800 quid, it’ll probably sell for anything up to $20,000 at that particular website. Obviously, if I can get it making $5000 then I’m gonna get hundreds of thousands of pounds for the website. So it’s in my best interest to make sure that that particular website makes money, and that is the way I now conduct my business, is buy an affiliate website and flipping them, and monetizing them better, and then flipping them on and selling them at a profit.

So a lot of people say where do you get these websites and stuff like that. Now, if anyone knows who this guy is, it’s Nigel Farage. Even guys like this got a list of domain names with amazing backlinks from Wikipedia, the Guardian, BBC, Independent, Fox News, New York Times, the Forbes, so many great backlinks there and feature snippet as well.

I got the domain name, and within a couple of weeks I’ve already got the website getting 13,000 monthly hits, ranks with 223 keywords. So that is how quick and easy you can get websites making money if you take advantage of expired domain names. I’m not sure how much money you’ll make off of Nigel Farage. That was just a kind of off the cuff example for a laugh.

But, there are plenty of opportunities out there to make money through affiliate marketing and buying and selling websites, and flipping them on a profit. So there is an opportunity there for you, and that’s what the talk was all about. So hopefully you guys enjoyed it. It was a great event. If anyone’s got any questions on the event itself, or anything I’ve said in the slides, then you can get me on Twitter, or Facebook, LinkedIn, or shoot me an email, or whatever it may be, and I’ll be happy to talk you through. Cheers.

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Craig Campbell

I am a Glasgow based SEO expert who has been doing SEO for 18 years.

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