Yo! How you all been? I have some catching up I need to do here – first off let me say Happy Valentine’s Day – hopefully you all had some sites up to rake in the mad dough? [No? Me, neither.]

I’ll be spending it chillin’ like a villain (not really, I have work to do: but there will be copious amounts of family time spent). I want to continue with the Commission Junction Profit Plan part 2…but first I have to follow up with “where have I been all this time?”

This is a post in itself, and time is of the essence as I’m finishing up some gigs here. What’s new, right? I hate to leave y’all hangin’ like ripe guava, just waitin’ to be picked already.

I’ll compromise in a short bullet list so I can carry on with the CJ post I wanted to get to… Um. Nope.

Holy cow, I started writing and I guess I’ve missed you all! This post is massive, like Jabba the Hut after Thanksgiving Day dinner at my house (you really should come one time) – I’ll stick with my explanation of where I’ve been and carry on in a few days with the CJ post.

[The CJ Profit Plan post part 2 is only 1/3 written and it ran a bit long...I hate “delete” so I’ll just deliver that later in possibly 2 installments.]

For now, I have some exciting news, methinks (well, if you’re me).

Where I’ve Been Lately

1. I’ve been building my own link wheels – monetized like I told you I would, taking my own advice. I have to admit – that was a bad idea.

By “bad” I mean, for my competition. ;)

Re-read the link wheel post, it just works, and costs nothing – unless, of course, you’re using Magic Submitter – more power to you then. It feels good to backlink my own stuff for a change.

2. I’ve fired myself from freelancing (there will be a few exceptions here and there, I’ve given my word to a few people yet). I have 3 gigs I’m working on at the moment, one at a time (Ruth “Webcareergirl” being one of them!).

No more Elance or freelancing for me, but right now I’m hustling to get these few projects done (I have a ghost post client as well, just in case said client’s reading this). The final stretch!

3. Life’s fundamentally changed. I am at the moment 100% entirely living on my passive income, well…sort of.

We got a huge “Oh my! This guy has 7 kids in the house!” tax return, which means: we was PO’ last year. But…

We Po’ No Mo’. That tax return + my current passive income will allow me to take 90 days+ to ramp my business up and make some kick-arse passive income.

4. I’m taking the family to a cabin with no computer this Saturday. 4, 5 days or so. Free. Love the church I attend – we have some incredibly fantastic folks, one day I’ll pay it forward rather than take it all myself.

5. I have thankfully made over 1000% more than I did last February by focusing on Commission Junction and the one site that Dave told me to focus on. Uh, thanks, Dave!

I have NOT focused on the Amazonian Profit Plan challenge with Clare – because the best thing for my family was to focus on CJ (writing reviews much like the APP outlines, but that doesn’t really count: these are CJ products on an established site, and therefore I’ve disqualified myself from Clare’s challenge).

The Amazonian Profit Plan Vs. Profitzon/Deadbeat Super Affiliate Challenge

Really quickly, two things about Clare: she has designed an Amazon review WordPress theme for $37 that I’m not an affiliate for – her theme looks clean and if I hadn’t just purchased Flexibility 3 for $47, I would have bought hers in a NY minute.

Thought I’d mention it since it was pretty eye catching, imho. Secondly, for the record, I DO want to “battle” Clare: Amazonian Profit Plan. Plan vs. Profitzon – but I’m publicly allowing her to come on my blog and guest post about her findings as they stand using Profitzon (now called “Deadbeat Super Affiliate” by Brock) – if she chooses to do so.

I only bring this up now because today was our deadline – she was kind enough to allow me to procrastinate a bit, and her recent post suggests she’s done her thing with Brock’s Amazon guide. I have not – yet. Hopefully you all understand why (re-read bullet points 2, 3 and 5).

Where To From Here

Where does that leave me? Well, currently I have a plan for my own passive income to stomp the index with some solid content – yes I believe I write solid content, because I put in the work to research my drivel…

Once I use Market Samurai to research those terms I can easily rank for and those keywords where I can see an IMMENSE, GAPING HOLE in the competition (which is key to keeping your backlinking to a minimum, why make work harder for yourself?) – I’ll be doing this:

1) Write more content since I’m at #1 for all my reviews on this site so far (with one exception). This means fulfilling my ‘duty’ as an affiliate for my other programs on CJ and ranking those reviews, which I can do pretty easily – and you can, too, BTW.

Did I mention Market Samurai yet? I did? ;)

BTW, did I mention it helps you with content and research? Analyzing backlinks and finding TOTALLY OBVIOUS WEAKNESSES in your “competition” in the SERPs? Moving on…

Of course: backlink until it ranks in the top 3, if possible.

2) Once I’m done with those reviews, I’m moving onto another niche.

Why?

This current niche does terribly for all the terms / product sales in summer – it’s just the market trend. Let me tell you that Google Insights for search and the “trend” bar in the Google Adwords Keyword Tool ain’t lyin’.

Pay careful attention to your market trends – it’s so critical that Google now includes the Insights for Search as part of their GEKT (if you hover over a keyword like shown here in the fancy pants picture, use the magnifying glass icon and check the trends on a month-by-month basis, or just see the trend bar in the GEKT column).

Google Insights Search

I’m sorta dense, well – I’m very dense, on my best day to tell you the truth – but it took me MONTHS to realize that that little green bar in the GEKT was telling me the search trends over the last year on a monthly basis. That’s priceless to know.

It explains why last summer I almost ate my family for sustenance – this one main niche tanked. Which is the trend for the industry – so I’ll be diversifying my interests with other websites I own before summer.

My process is simple:

  1. Leverage the websites I have up already (I have 13 total “up”…scratch that, 11 – I let my non-performers expire) – I’m looking for products I’m already “selling” (not really though since I’ll be changing all my AdSense sites into Amazon and CJ sites) and looking for those that meet the next criteria.
  2. I’ll go over products in these niches to see what sells in the summer – and if nothing does, I’ll start a new site that showcases products that do.
  3. Change the themes from XFactor to Flexibility 3, since it upped my conversion rates by 30%, and changing themes has increased my CTR for affiliate products to the tune of thousands of dollars – which ain’t hard considering I was using an AdSense optimized [read: ugly as a shaved dog's rear end] theme, just something to chew on.

Then I’ll just do what I do. Write stuff. Rank pages. Deposit the check if I didn’t opt for direct deposit like a dummy.

I’m choosing products with an Amazon focus this time, and that way I’ll have something to battle Clare with and really push the limits of my Amazon earnings through the tin roof. Rusted.

I haven’t checked my websites’ main products / keywords for their summer trends, but that’s my next big hairy deal after getting these other 4 companies I’m affiliated with on CJ and their reviews up on my site and makin’ me monies.

Hopefully. :)

3) I’ll be using my monetized link wheel, leveraging every Amazon and AdSense backlink I can in my backlinking efforts. This is another “off the wall” thing I’ve found works and net me an extra $150 so far.

4) I plan on keeping my expenses low – so I’m going to be relying on Article Marketing Robot to really polish off my efforts, though initially every page will be getting my manual linking efforts (link wheel / money links and non-money / traffic links like EzineArticles which still rocks my referral traffic).

Personal Challenge for Monthly Subscriptions

I don’t have any except HMA Virtual Private Network, and that’s $11 though I’ll be getting the 6-month I think pretty soon (and about $20-30 in CAPTCHAs now that I’m using Bookmarking Demon and Article Marketing Robot).

I’m on a mission to see how much I can rank without a monthly subscription – BUT I’m doing that mainly right now out of need, rather than want. I want Magic Submitter back. I want ArticleRanks back.

So the plan is:

When I feel like I’ve crossed “the threshold” I’ll be upping my expenses and plan on using ArticleRanks as the paid subscription (since they build backlinks to your articles to get them indexed, and hit up blogs vs. article directories), Build My Rank possibly and buying SEO hosting for diverse C-Class IP addresses and creating easy as pie links, within reason.

That’s the plan, Stan. Wish me luck. Otherwise you’ll hear me begging for work like I did last summer. Shoot me if I do.

Stuff I’m 100% trying to sell you in this post – because it works and because my bills get paid that way – just in case you were wondering:

  • Flexibility 3 – try the free version, it still worked out well, I wanted no footer links though so it’s worth the $47 in a heartbeat. Conversions skyrocketed once I began using it – but no template writes content for you that’s worth reading, mind you!This is my fave theme, period.
  • Article Marketing Robot – because you really don’t need an expensive monthly subscription if you use this right. Trust me on that, I have no problems telling you what doesn’t work, ‘cause I get ticked at sucky software.
  • Bookmarking Demon – this baby still cooks, and sure beats a monthly subscription (though I hated learning to use it, it’s now working like a champ).
  • HMA VPN – seriously dirt cheap private network / proxy service so you can comment and surf without leaving an IP trail for competitors. Works great for commenting!
  • Amazonian Profit Plan. – it works like nobody’s business. I’m making my sister- and mother-in-law read it, it’s legit.
  • Market Samurai – I don’t believe I did all this manually for so long (finding weaknesses in the SERPs) but I did. Makes Micro Niche Finder moot, it has so many functions, I’ll cover in detail in a post around the corner, check out the free download, though – it’s a doozy!

Up Next for The Average Genius:

Finishing up the “Commission Junction Profit Plan” with the Market Research and Content Planning installments.

Working out more. :)

[Gotta love the local YMCA with the wife and kids - thank GOD for my wife and kids. They make all this seem less insane and totally worth the trouble.]

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