If you have read any of my 70+ traveling blog posts you will see in my two years on the road I have been lucky enough to laze around on the most idyllic desert island in Fiji, go white-water rafting down the highest waterfall in commercial rafting, drive the Great Ocean Road, experience the heart-rending sadness of the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and much, much more.
And you know the best part?
I came back with more money than I started with!
But how I hear you ask?
If you want to find out how to make money to travel you only need to know two words – affiliate marketing.
And what is even better
This is something anyone can do.
But before I tell you more I just want to make two important points:
Ok, so now that is done let’s answer the question you are no doubt asking…
So what is affiliate marketing?
Nearly all of us will have participated in affiliate marketing at one point or another without realising it. Usually the process is something like this:
Let’s say you are looking for a new backpack for a trip, you head over to Google and type in something like ‘Best backpack for round the world trip’, or ‘Best 50L backpack’, or maybe even something like ‘Lowe Alpine Cerro Torre 75:100 Backpack Review’ if you have a specific brand in mind.
You are presented with a list of websites giving a roundup of the best backpacks/best 50L backpack or reviews of the Lowe Alpine Cerro Torre 75:100 backpack.
You go to one of those websites, let’s say it is bobsbackpackreviews.com and read their round up or review. The review you read is quite good and you decide to buy a backpack. Handily within the page there is a link to take you to the backpack of your choice. You click on the link and you are taken to an external website, let’s say Amazon, where you can buy your chosen item.
You buy the backpack and you are happy. What you might not have realised though is that bobsbackreviews.com actually gets a commission from Amazon for sending you to their website.
And that is affiliate marketing summarised in a nutshell.
It is now an established industry and one that is growing rapidly.
HOW DID THIS HELP ME?
I created a website targeting a niche and over a couple of years it grew slowly to the point that I was able to go traveling and the income I was getting each month from my commissions from the site covered my traveling costs.
Even better the commissions kept coming in throughout my travels – so I was getting a nice passive income each month.
This, coupled with stopping to work in Australia, meant when I came back home I actually hadn’t spent any of the savings I had set aside and came back with more money than I left with!
How can this work for you?
That is a good question.
Using Wealthy Affiliate you can easily create your own website, specialising in a particular area (or niche as it is called). You will be taught everything from how to choose a niche, how to set up the website, how to create content people are looking for, how to monetize your website, how to get traffic to your website, how to use social media to your advantage – pretty much everything.
I’ll walk you through the process:
- You choose a subject you want to write about (the narrower the better). For instance travel would be very broad, but if you choose sleeping bag, or walking boots, or compression socks you have a much narrower niche with less competition.
- You regularly write content on the subject. Ideally a mix of information articles, reviews and buyers guides (ie best sleeping bags for cold weather, best lightweight sleeping bags).
- As you continue to write content your traffic will slowly increase.
- As long as the content you write is good people will click on your links and buy products and you will make commission.
All you need are three things:
- The ability to write reasonably well
- The ability to follow training
It sounds simple and it is.
So why do I recommend Wealthy Affiliate?
Basically it is a completely transparent, helpful community that will help you create a website and make money from it completely from scratch.
Best of all, unlike some other similar programmes that claim to teach you how to make money online, you DON’T need to put your credit card details in to sign up. You can sign up for free and see how you get on.
But I know what you want to know – the price:
The image below gives you an idea of what you get as a free member and as a premium member:
How will it help you?
If you are anything like I was when I started I had no idea how to even go about building a website. I mean I thought I could write pretty well, it was what I did in my day job in PR & Marketing, but I had no idea how I could use that to my advantage online.
The good news is:
Wealthy Affiliate has a 50 lesson training course called the Online Entrepreneur Certification (OEC). This is split into five levels with 10 lessons in each. It walks you through the whole process of building a website right from start to finish.
Each of the 50 lessons has an easy to understand video, that you can follow at your own pace. The training progresses logically and there are a number of tasks you have to check off at the end of each lesson before moving onto the next one.
And best of all?
You can sign up as a free member and do the first ten lessons without paying anything to see how you get on.
But what makes Wealthy Affiliate so special?
There is much more than the 50 course training class. In fact there is another, separate, 50 course training class called the Affiliate Bootcamp.
But on top of that you get:
You get loads more training on practically anything related to internet marketing and much more – from writing content to email marketing. There are 13 separate training classrooms with masses of training in each. Also every Friday there is a live Webinar from the Wealthy Affiliate Training Coach.
In fact if you want to find an answer to anything just type it into the search bar and you are sure to find something to help you
A Welcoming Community
There are now a number of members of Wealthy Affiliate who I class as good friends – it has a very close knit community always willing to help each other out. The most instant example of this is the Live Chat feature:
You can pop in for a chat or to ask a question and there will nearly always be someone to help out, often I am there and you even see the website owners Kyle and Carson pop in to help and advise new members.
In the same way if you want to know something specific and you can’t find an answer to it, you can post a question that goes out to the community and you will usually get an answer within hours and usually more than one answer.
What is more if you sign up using my link I will be notified and be your personal mentor! If you are a Premium Member you can also private message other members for help (including me of course!).
There is a site feedback area where you can post your website for other Wealthy Affiliate members to critique and suggest improvements. Very helpful when you are just starting out.
Often an additional fee associated with having a website is paying to host it somewhere. At Wealthy Affiliate you actually can host up to 50 websites at no additional cost. In fact even as a free member you can host two websites without paying anything – a great way for you to have a play around and a go at the free training without paying anything at all.
Help to find the best keywords to get traffic to your website
As a Premium member you get unlimited use of Jaaxy – a keyword tool that will help you find the best words and phrases to target when you write for your website. It helps you determine what phrases people are searching for but not so many websites are writing about – making it easier for you to get traffic to your website.
How this helps will be more evident if you sign-up to become a member of Wealthy Affiliate and start building a website.
But all I will say is it is worth its weight in gold.
Is affiliate marketing really something you can make money from?
As of June 2018 55% of the world’s population were estimated to use the internet – that is 4.2 billion people! As the world increases in size this number is increasing exponentially. The number was just 738 million in 2000 and 3.2 billion as recently as 2015.
Now think how many of them buy products from the internet? Billions and billions and the market is only increasing.
Think I am exaggerating?
In 2016 it was estimated US retailers spent $4.7 billion on affiliate marketing – that number is expected to rise to $6.8 billion by 2020.
81% of brands use affiliate marketing a a way of promoting their products.
Do you see where I am going with this?
According to Google Trends searches for the term ‘affiliate marketing’ rose by 30% from September 2016 to September 2017
And back in 2015 Amazon revenue broke the $100 billion barrier – it is estimated Amazon Affiliates made at least $10 billion from this!
Pretty impressive right?
But how will it help me go traveling?
Imagine you can build up a website to the point you are getting a good amount of regular visits to it daily? As long as you keep adding content and following the training Wealthy Affiliate provides – you should be able to do this.
As traffic grows, providing you have links to products or services on your site you will start to make sales and commissions from them.
And the best part?
As you keep adding good content, your traffic will grow more and your commissions will increase and so on.
Eventually you could get to a point where you are making a nice passive income from your site and the money will continue to roll in if you leave to go traveling.
Now here is the kicker…
You could even eventually outsource your writing and pay someone to write articles for you. So if you go traveling but are able to still post regularly to your website your traffic and commissions should continue to grow even more!
So what do YOU get out of this?
I think it is very important to be open and honest here and yes if you sign up and become a Premium member I do make a commission.
However I am recommending Wealthy Affiliate as it works! I was actually a member there many years ago and left when I started to make money, thinking I didn’t need it anymore. How wrong I was! I realised the training, support and help is essential in creating and maintaining an online business so I signed up again.
And as I say you can sign up for free and remain a free member as long as you want to test it out.
Will you help me if I join Wealthy Affiliate?
Yes! I will get in touch with you and always be available for you to private message if you have any questions at any stage of your journey.
We can share travelling hints and tips too. I want my next big trip to be through Central Asia – so if you have ever traveled there let me know!
How long will it take to make money?
This varies depending upon how much time you can commit, how good you are at writing, what niche you choose to focus on.
As I said this isn’t a get rich quick scheme and it takes most people 3 to 6 months I would say to make their first cent/pound/dollar.
However as long as you keep writing content regularly and as your site matures it should go up and up in Google’s rankings and the sales will become more and more regularly and of increasing value.
How much money could I make?
The sky is your limit…
And you will find plenty more on the Wealthy Affiliate website.
How do I choose which subject to write about?
There are two schools of thought here:
- Write about something you are passionate about
- Write about something that is more likely to make you money.
This depends on the type of person you are. The advantage of method 1 is you will find it easier to write about, the downside is your passion might be a very competitive area that is difficult to make money from as result.
For method 2 you might find it harder to write about something you are not interested in, but you are more likely to make money if there isn’t as much competition.
Can I make money from a travel blog?
You can. Travel is a very competitive niche so it is more difficult, but you could definitely start a travel blog reviewing travel items, travel companies, travel insurance, etc, etc.
I have no idea how to create a website – can I still do this?
Absolutely. I had no idea how to create a website when I started this, but the training at Wealthy Affiliate walks you through everything step by step.
Take a look at this video a friend of mine at Wealthy Affiliate created which explains how easy it is:
OK, so what are the next steps?
If you have any questions please just leave them below and I will do my very best to help!