How To Start A Blog in 2021 That Makes Money Day 1

There is no bad time to become a blogger. Simply the sooner you start, the larger a blog can grow. In this article, we’re going to show you how to start a money-making blog in under 5 minutes.

108+ BEST AFFILIATE PROGRAMS TO MAKE MONEY IN 2021 (GREAT FOR BEGINNERS)

108+ Best Affiliate Programs To Make Money in 2021 (Great for Beginners)

Affiliate programs dramatically increase revenue for bloggers/influencers. Here are the best affiliate programs based on revenue & popularity

Top 22 Warren Buffett Quotes the Internet Can’t Get Enough Of

Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, has a net worth of over $78.2 billion and is known as one of the greatest investors of all time. So when he speaks, people take note.

Here are some of the top 22 Warren Buffett Quotes the internet can’t get enough of.

Warren Buffett Quotes Infographic

Top 22 Warren Buffett Quotes The Internet Can’t Get Enough Of

Here are some of the top Warren Buffet quotes found on every list of Warren Buffet quotes around the internet. These quotes range in wisdom on investing to regular life. I try to live by these quotes on my own investment portfolio.

Warren Buffett Quotes

1. Rule #1: Never lose money. Rule #2: Never forget rule #1

One of my favorite Warren Buffet Quotes. The fastest way to grow your money is to never lose it in the first place. This applies from saving on your groceries to focusing on less risky stocks of well established companies.

2. It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently

Think about the Wells Fargo or Equifax scandals. It takes years to build enough trust for someone to have brand loyalty. Warren Buffet quotes it takes 20 years, but it takes 5 minutes or less to destroy all that goodwill you’ve built. People are quick to revolt if you’ve done anything to betray their trust.

It is infinitely harder to build trust than destroy it.

3. Diversification is a protection against ignorance. It makes very little sense for those who know what they’re doing.

Multiple studies show that diversification in the stock market will help protect you against market falls. Or it could be summarized in the old proverb “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. Unless you have insider information that a stock is going do really well, maintain a diversified portfolio to protect you. No one knows what they’re doing all the time.

4. If you aren’t willing to own a stock for ten years, don’t even think about owning it for ten minutes. Put together a portfolio of companies whose aggregate earnings march upward over the years, and so also will the portfolio’s market value.

Unless you’re a day trader (I will never be), you should only be investing in the stock market with the intention to hold those stocks for a long time. You can do really well as a beginner if you’re buying stocks and not planning on selling till you retire. Those are where you get the best returns. Warren Buffett is infamously known for rarely selling stocks.

5. It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.

When you buy a stock, you should think of it as owning a piece of that company. You should be looking at wonderful companies that have a competitive advantage in the industry. Those are the companies that will do well over the long run. You may find a wonderful price on a mediocre company, but really what are you getting? A mediocre company that will likely be edged out of the market by a better company.

Many of the famous Warren Buffett quotes are about investing in strong companies with a competitive advantage and strong brand loyalty rather than cheap companies where you think you can make a quick buck. Warren Buffett is never into buying a company for a quick buck.

6. Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful.

During the 2008 financial crisis when investors were all exiting the market, Warren Buffett invested in a few large companies even though their stock prices were falling. Those deals made Warren Buffett over $10 billion dollars when the market stabilized and it’s continuing to show dividends. When the market goes upside down during world events, politics, market forecasts, those are the times when everyone else is fearful, that Warren Buffet sees an advantage when the markets crash.

Think about it this way, the New York Stock Exchange has been around since 1817, it has always recovered. Chances are, minus a world apocalypse, that the market will always bounce back. Those who capitalize on those downturns are usually rewarded.

7. The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.

One of my favorite Warren Buffett quotes because it has so many applications. You will see many opportunities in your life and you may want to jump on everyone, but it’s ok to be selective and say no. You’ll burn yourself out if you say “yes” to everything. This also applies to going out on a Saturday night with friends drinking. It’s ok to say “no” to save a few dollars or have a night to yourself to finish your article on Warren Buffett quotes. =)

This also applies to going out on a Saturday night with friends drinking. It’s ok to say “no” to save a few dollars or have a night to yourself to finish your article on Warren Buffett quotes. =)

8. Develop and build the habits you admire in others.

Remember all those times that your parents wanted you to hang out with those “good kids”. The habits of the people you surround yourself with rub off you on, consciously or unconsciously. When you find people like Warren Buffett, the Oracle of Omaha, who is one of the greatest investors of all time. You should find out what makes him so successful and learn those traits to improve yourself.

9. Passive investing will make you more money than active trading

Oh my goodness, fees are the WORST! Active trading requires more work and more fees, so more of your money will be paid to your broker. Yet studies have shown over and over that passive investing where you set your money and forget it are far more successful for growing wealth. I don’t plan to ever touch my stocks currently making dividends.

10. There seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult.

Great quote, people always imagine things are more difficult than they really are. When I first considered starting investing, I thought there were so many hurdles and financial experts I would have to pay. Yet, when I finally decided I wanted to start investing in the stock market, I just downloaded the Robinhood App and started investing. It took 10 minutes to sign up and buy my first stock when I worried about investing in the stock market for over 5 years. Things are often more simple than you think they are.

11. Tell me who your heroes are and I’ll tell you who you’ll turn out to be.

This is similar to the Warren Buffett quote “Develop and build the habits you admire in others”. If you want to be an entrepreneur, start joining local meetups of entrepreneurs. You learn SO MUCH MORE when you surround yourself with the people you want to be like. You can learn A LOT in a book, but you’ll learn even more by surrounding yourself with people you admire.

12. We have long felt that the only value of stock forecasters is to make fortune-tellers look good.

No one can predict the stock market, no one. Not even Warren Buffett. Anyone who says they know exactly how the market works is trying to sell you something. You can lump stock forecasters being as accurate as the carnival fortune-tellers. You know the ones with 3 teeth, crystal ball and you’re going to die in 2083.

13. When we own portions of outstanding businesses with outstanding managements, our favorite holding period is forever.

If you invest in an outstanding company, even if the stock price goes up, why would you ever sell it? No matter when you sell it, outstanding companies will continually do better and better. Don’t sell until you absolutely have to, otherwise, you’ll just be losing money in the long run. Many of Warren Buffett Quotes are like this, they are all very Anti-Day Trader.

14. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist. Investing is not a game where the guy with the 160 IQ beats the guy with 130 IQ.

If you follow the basic principals of Warren Buffett and buy outstanding companies with strong competitive advantages like Apple (AAPL). You don’t have to be a genius. Just buy and hold forever, you literally don’t have to do anything until you sell.

Many Warren Buffett quotes are similar to this because he stresses that anyone can invest in the stock market. The simplest way is just to invest in index funds that follow the market. Set it and forget it. The market sees an average increase of 7% per year and that’s WAY better than a savings account.

15. I try to buy stock in businesses that are so wonderful that an idiot can run them. Because sooner or later, one will.

Look for companies to invest in that are so strong that they can weather any storm because soon enough they will have to. Think about Apple (AAPL), as long as they keep pushing out iPhones it doesn’t matter who runs the company, they’ll continue to do well. People were worried when Steve Jobs passed because they didn’t know the future of the company, but Tim Cook stepped in and maintained the same Apple legacy. As long as Tim Cook sticks to the secret Apple recipe, they’ll be in good shape.

16. Buy into a company because you want to own it, not because you want the stock to go up.

If you see a company that you think is going to do well or heard will do well, don’t buy it unless you’re willing to hold it for awhile. If something goes wrong and the stock dives, you’re stuck with a company you don’t believe in and will likely sell at a lower price to get rid of it, ruining the reason you bought it in the first place.

17. Wall Street is the only place that people ride to work in a Rolls Royce to get advice from those who take the subway.

This is just a funny Warren Buffet quote.

18. Charlie and I have not learned how to solve difficult business problems. What we have learned is to avoid them.

I’m sure Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger have learned how to solve difficult business problems, but the best way to navigate murky waters is to avoid them all together. The more problems your business can avoid, the better shape you’ll be. You can avoid a lot of problems from being proactive instead of reactive.

19. Long ago, Ben Graham taught me that “Price is what you pay; value is what you get.”

Ben Graham, Warren Buffett’s mentor had this popular quote. I always think about it simply. Price is what you buy a stock for and Value is what you sell that same stock for.

20. It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.

If you can’t tell, Warren Buffett believes in surrounding yourself with the right people. He credits much of his success from surrounding himself with smart, good people.

21. If past history was all there was to the game, the richest people would be librarians.

When you analyze a stock based on its historical performance, it’s called technical analysis. Yet past performance does not necessarily mean future performance. Just because you know what the stock has done in the past doesn’t mean it’s going to follow that same trend.

22. You only have to do a very few things right in your life so long as you don’t do too many things wrong.

It’s ok to mess up, focus on learning from those mistakes for the next time. It just sounds cooler when Warren Buffett quotes it. Or you can take this as no matter how many mistakes you’ve made in the past, you always have a chance to do more good. It’s one of those life quotes that can go many ways.

50 Amazon Affiliate Website Examples Making Money in a Niche

Looking to start your first affiliate website? Here are 50 examples of niche websites that are making real money to get you started. Learn from someone else who is already successful rather than reinventing the wheel. #bloggingtips #affiliateincome #affiliatemarketing #blogging

I’ve always had a hard time finding a good list of Amazon Affiliate Website Examples, so here is my personal list of inspiration that I’ve built up over the years. I’ve been itching to create a new website lately as an awesome way to make money, but before I start I thought I would review my list of successful Amazon Affiliate Websites currently making money for some lessons learned.

What is an Amazon Affiliate Website?

An Amazon Affiliate Website is any website that earns money by linking products from their website to the Amazon store. This can be a blog or website that references a product with a link back to Amazon, so customers can purchase that particular item.

It’s actually really easy to sign-up for their affiliate program, here is how to become an Amazon Affiliate.

The idea is that you are referring customers to Amazon where you gain a commission if a user buys from the Amazon store. This is usually 5%-10% per purchase. Amazon tracks this by a special code from the URL link on your website. Click here to create your own website with affiliate marketing.

Many of these websites use Amazon, along with other affiliate programs to boost revenue. Here is a list of 108 Best Affiliate Programs in addition to Amazon to make money for bloggers and influencers.

22 Successful Amazon Affiliate Website Examples

ThisIsWhyImBroke-Amazon Affiliate Website Example

ThisIsWhyImBroke – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

ThisIsWhyImBroke.com
This is one of my favorite Amazon Affiliate Websites because it’s so freaking cool! These guys gather up the coolest gadgets, gifts, tech and oddities from Amazon and around the web to showcase on their website. These are gag gifts and fun gadgets people love to buy. They likely use an SEO tool like SEMrush to find great blog post ideas. This site uncovers the cool, often hidden, things of the internet and all you have to do is click on one of the Amazon Affiliate links to buy it from the Amazon store. ThisIsWhyIAmBroke works with more than just Amazon, but it’s one of their biggest revenue sources. It’s entirely possible to create a website just like this.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 2.40M Visitors
Average Post Length: 10 – 160 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Salt Firing Shotgun
How much do they make: Around $20,000+ per month from Amazon (source)

ConsumerSearch-Amazon Affiliate Website Example

ConsumerSearch – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

ConsumerSearch.com
This website started in 2000 as a review website which helped consumers by reviewing different products and offering the consumer the chance to purchase the product. These have become a very popular way for bloggers to create Amazon affiliate websites. It’s a great way to feature products and a good review can be very motivating for someone to purchase.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 1.10M Visitors
Average Post Length: 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Bose Sound Bar
How much do they make: This site was bought for $33 Million from About.com in 2007 (source)

Gift Idea Geek Amazon Affiliate Website Example

GiftIdeaGeek.com
This Amazon Affiliate Website is similar to ThisIsWhyImBroke in that the main homepage is set up as an affiliate product page which is perfect selling. The idea is that GiftIdeaGeek focuses on geeky and pop culture referenced products that appeal to that niche. This website uses witty satire to hook the audience into “clicking through” on creative products and if they buy, GiftIdeaGeek gains the affiliate commission. In addition to the homepage, they use a blogroll section to gain SEO and additional affiliate opportunities.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb): Unknown
Average Post Length: 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Clever Socks
How much do they make: Unknown

 

TheWirecutter-Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TheWirecutter – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TheWirecutter.com
This is a great example of a top-notch review site. They start at the homepage notifying that they make affiliate commissions but provide top-end reviews from independent reviewers. This is great, to be honest upfront. In addition to being transparent, they also take the content is king strategy. I randomly clicked on their “Top Home Projector” post where they reviewed (and linked) to several high-end home theater projectors. Keep in mind that these high priced items produce high commissions. That may explain why they spent the time to write a 5,000 word post on it. This site seems to do everything right in being a prime example of an Amazon Affiliate Website. This site now has over 60 staff members working for it.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 8.10M Visitors
Average Post Length: 3,000-5,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Air Purifier
How much do they make: In 2015, this site combined with The Wirecutter made $150 Million in eCommerce sales. So you can get an idea of their commission revenue. (source)

 

TheSweetHome -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TheSweetHome – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TheSweetHome.com
This is the sister site to the affiliate marketing site TheWirecutter. Another amazon affiliate website that lists gadgets and gear that the website reviews. They come out and say it on their homepage, they earn money by affiliate commissions. Apparently, this site receives over 1.8M visitors, which is pretty impressive considering this site only started in 2013. I guess the moral of the story is, it’s not too late to start a review website. It also helps to have incredibly long reviews. In fact, their one soda stream review had over 13,000 words. This is a great example that content is king.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 2.50M Visitors
Average Post Length: 4,000 – 5,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Robot Vaccum
How much do they make: In 2015, this site combined with The Wirecutter made $150 Million in e-commerce sales. So you can get an idea of their commission revenue. (source)

 

GearPatrol -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

GearPatrol – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

GearPatrol.com
This is an interesting style review website that reads more like a magazine than a review site. This definitely helps give it some more credit than throwing a up a bunch of products and hoping people read them. It’s interesting that it takes a different approach, rather than writing long content, it focuses on a clean layout and video reviews to show people the product they’re testing, racking in 2.3 million monthly viewers. This is incredibly valuable for people willing to buy, but want to see the product in a video demo before purchasing. Now compare this site to what the site looked like in 2008 (here).

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 3.30M Visitors
Average Post Length: 100-500 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Alera Elusion Series Office Chair
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make

 

 

 

DogFoodAdvisor -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

DogFoodAdvisor – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

DogFoodAdvisor.com
This is a testament that design isn’t everything. Look at their homepage. There is one, very cute puppy, but nothing else. I’m not sure how this site is successful, but from looking over their latest articles, they are receiving regular viewers and comments. Something is working. Then again, people do love their dogs.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 1.30M Visitors
Average Post Length: 1,000-1,500 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Dog Food
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make

 

BabyGearLab -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BabyGearLab – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BabyGearLab.com
So combine a review site and something people everyone loves, like babies. Imagine all the confusion new parents have when they bring a new baby into the world. What do they do, what do they need, what is the best? BabyGearLab solves that by reviewing baby stuff and helping parents understand it and buy it. This site has been around since 2011 helping parents through the impossible decisions of what is best for your baby.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 234.10K Visitors
Average Post Length: 6,000-10,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Convertable Baby Seat
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make

 

BestCovery -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BestCovery – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BestCovery.com
Review sites continue to be an impressive way to make an affiliate commission. This review site doesn’t even niche down, their tag line is “Discover the Best of Everything”. From my initial review, they continue the streak of long content to rank high in Google. In doing this, they list multiple items really pushing their 1st, 2nd, 3rd and so on picks. All conveniently with their own price tags linking to Amazon. With only 152 thousand monthly visitors, it’s not as much as other sites, but they continue to push out new content and gain new Facebook users. Anyone with a blog knows, it’s hard to get Facebook users, so they’re doing something right.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 152.10K Visitors
Average Post Length: 4,000-6,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Epoxy
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

BestReviews -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BestReviews – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

BestReviews.com
This is one the cleanest designs I’ve seen of an Amazon Affiliate Website. It has a very professional look for a review website, but they don’t overcrowd you with product reviews right off. This site really sets itself apart with their actual videos and reviews inside of their test center. You know these testers are actually testing the product rather than copying a review from another site or making things up. It’s so legit that I will likely be back to this site for future reviews for my purchases. It really gains your trust with the photos and videos even though you know they are making money through the affiliate commissions. Plus they buy all the products themselves and never accept any products from the manufacturer to maintain objectivity, but when you bring in 3.1 million visitors per month, you can buy a few items to review.

It’s so legit that I will likely be back to this site for future reviews for my purchases. It really gains your trust with the photos and videos even though you know they are making money through the affiliate commissions. Plus they buy all the products themselves and never accept any products from the manufacturer to maintain objectivity, but when you bring in 3.1 million visitors per month, you can buy a few items to review.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 3.80M Visitors
Average Post Length: Around 1,000 Words + Videos
One of Most Searched Products: Best Hair Bleaching Products
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

KidsTabletswithWiFi -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

KidsTabletswithWiFi – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

KidsTabletsWithWiFi.com
This is an Amazon Affiliate Website that has really niched down into specifically, as the name implies, kids tablets with Wifi. These are high priced items that produce high commissions in a huge market, children. What is the best tablet for kids? Do you give them an iPad? What if it breaks? Is there a cheaper option? These are all questions that this site helps with. It runs like a blog, but with a relatively simple design. It’s hard to tell if they have produced much new content because they don’t include dates with their blog posts. However, this site is just one blog, with three additional pages for “Best Tablets for Kids”, “Kids Tablet Reviews” and “Kids Tablet Comparisons” all of which are likely keyword researched names. It’s likely the niched down keyword research to bring in the traffic, because the content while good, is relatively short with 300-500 words per post.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb): 1.80K Visitors
Average Post Length: 400 – 600 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Fire HD Kids Tablet
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

LongBoardReviews -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

LongBoardReviews – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

LongboardReviews.net
Another example of an Amazon Affiliate Website that niched down to long boards. These are like skateboards but longer and meant to cruise, going longer distances than skateboards. It’s a relatively simple website that loads the user with tons of products from the homepage but highlights the lack of comments per review (usually 0 – 2 comments). The typical length of an article is 300-500 words so they are relying on their specific niche for traffic. Not bad for a “.net” domain as they are less common than their popular counterparts “.com”. It’s not the best example, but I’m going for a range.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 2.70K Visitors
Average Post Length: 400 – 600 Words
How much do they make: The website sold in 2016 on Flippa for $5,275. Usually a website sells for a year’s worth of revenue. So we can expect this site to make around $500 per month (source)

 

FootballSnackHelmets -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

FootballSnackHelmets – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

FootballSnackHelmets.com
This is one of the most niche markets I’ve ever seen. It’s gems like these that make me confident the right keyword research in the smallest of niches can lead to a successful Amazon Affiliate Website. I’m not saying this specific site is successful though. They have only 2 blog post with minimal content for each “Football Snack Helmet”. It seems like someone had great intentions to set up an affiliate site with a clean design but forgot about it after 2 blog posts, ending in June 2016. This is one of the easiest examples that you could set up in a weekend.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 2.20K Visitors
Average Post Length: 100 – 300 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Cleavland Browns Kids Uniform
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make, but we anticipate it’s seasonal and reliant on the US customer base.

 

OutdoorGearLab -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

OutdoorGearLab – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

OutdoorGearLab.com
This site is owned by the same owners as BabyGearLab.com so you’ll notice some similarities. It’s a really clean site that looks more like REI’s website than a review site. They generate tons of organic traffic for each review category like ski gloves combines all of their test products (amazon links), test experiences, reviews and opinions so that the review pages reach around 6,000 words. This is a great way to do a review page in my opinion to combine the word length of each review into one huge, helpful page. Plus keep in mind that people love outdoor gear. It’s insanely fun to go outdoors but you never know if you have right equipment. To figure out what’s right, these outdoor review sites help immensely!

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 1.60K Visitors
Average Post Length: 5,000 – 7,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Arc’teryx Jacket
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

TopTenReviews-Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TopTenReviews – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TopTenReviews.com
This is an older site (2003) with some heavy domain authority. That explains the crazy amount of content this site contains. It’s helpful though when you have 350+ employees. This isn’t a small enterprise, and they still utilize the Amazon Affiliate network to monetize their site. They use long and wordy articles to review products, maximizing the SEO of each page. The biggest difference from this site and others is the amount of digital content these guys review. Their digital content ranges from Antivirus Software to Credit Card processing. This isn’t a typical Amazon product, but digital content can earn affiliate commissions through other sources than Amazon. Amazon is a great resource to monetize your site, but it’s definitely not the only way.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 12.80M Visitors
Average Post Length: 3,000 – 5,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Printer
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

TomsHardware -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TomsHardware – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

TomsHardware.com
Do you remember 1997? That’s when this website was created. You could maybe tell from the website homepage that looks more like About.com than a review website, then again they have over 1.5 million pages indexed. Don’t make the same mistake I did, this isn’t a door and sink hardware company, this is computer hardware for hardcore nerds who build their own computers. I’m sure this site is at the forefront of every build-it-myself computer geek out there (I’m one ). The site is now owned by Purch, the same people who own TopTenReviews. These guys have really got a good handle on successful Amazon Affiliate Websites.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 47.50M Visitors
Average Post Length: 500 – 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Gaming Monitors
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

 

 

CarSeatAnswers-Amazon Affiliate Website Example

CarSeatAnswers – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

CarSeatAnswers.com
It’s really simple and plain websites like this that make me happy! If something this plain can bring in so many visitors, than someone creative and design oriented like me can do better, right? CarSeatAnswers focuses on keywords like “Car Seat Answers” and “Car Seat Guide” and “Which Seat is Safest for a Baby’s Car Seat” then writes 700-1,000 word articles with no photos except for the Amazon Products sold throughout the article. This is one of the simplest example, but it still brings in visitors even with a small amount of domain authority. It gives you hope though, that you can easily create a successful website, right?

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 3.40K Visitors
Average Post Length: 300 – 500 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Car Seat
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

KichenFaucetDivas -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

KichenFaucetDivas – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

KitchenFaucetDivas.com
This was one of the first Amazon Affiliate Website Examples I ever came across. I thought it was incredibly simple before I saw some other websites that were even worse. A lot of it is what you would expect. A wordy homepage with a couple of pages in the menu bar that all resemble more keyword targeting than actual helpful navigation. I keep wondering if they actually reviewed all those different kitchen sinks, because that would be a lot of work installing and disassembling numerous sinks to see how they work. Likely not, their “About Us” page just says a “Mother of two” which tells me as the reader, if you’re not putting your name on this, your reviews are probably just as generic. Usually, if an “About” page doesn’t list a name or company, I assume that the website is just as generic.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 30.20K Visitors
Average Post Length: 300 – 500 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Kitchen Faucet
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

LiveLongerRunning -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

LiveLongerRunning – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

LiveLongerRunning.com
I read this title and expected an awesome community of runners sharing their glory stories of braving the snow and rain to log in miles. Instead I’m directed to a boring treadmill site. This site is about 5 pages and a couple of additional pages for reviews for treadmills. The reviews are the only pages with any kind of lengthy content and those are still only around 800 words. The main redeeming quality about this site, is they are focusing on high price items so even a single sale of a treadmill is a nice commission. This is another example of a website you could make in a weekend. It’s motivating though because you know you can do better, right?

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 11.10K Visitors
Average Post Length: 500 – 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: High End Treadmill
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

PickMyShaver -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

PickMyShaver – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

 

PickMyShaver.com
This is a review site that focuses on high-end shaving equipment to have a nice mix of lower end and higher end shavers for a nice variety. It’s a simple/clean website design with lots of photos to help people understand the variety. Each review is decently long, but nothing to rave about. What is impressive is each review has a good amount of comments that are answered by the website owner. That tells me that the owner is monitoring this site and probably adding new content. A site like this wouldn’t be too hard to maintain. I’m thinking, maybe they add a new blog post once a month.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb): 41.90K Visitors
Average Post Length: 800 – 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Best Electric Shaver
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

100DaysOfRealFood -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

100DaysOfRealFood – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

100DaysOfRealFood.com
This is a great example of an Amazon Affiliate Website that’s not a review site! It’s actually more like a food blog that recommends certain products through their blog and resource pages. With 1.6 Million Facebook Likes, Lisa Leak (owner) has become an authority on “real food” and uses this platform to sell other things like her own cook book. This example is more for a traditional blogger who wants to start monetizing their website rather than creating a review site.

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 407.60K Visitors
Average Post Length: 500 – 1,000 Words
How much do they make: She doesn’t list how much she makes on her blog.

 

InflatableHotTubGuide -Amazon Affiliate Website Example

InflatableHotTubGuide – Amazon Affiliate Website Example

InflatableHotTubGuide.com
So this is a niche I guess. This is an interesting example of a site built around a high price item that I could see people willing to buy online rather than a store. This doesn’t leave a lot of room to expand into other hot tub areas, but if your focus is “inflatable hot tubs” then go for it. I can’t imagine they update it too often, the last time seems to be August 2015, but what’s new in the world of inflatable hot tubs?

Monthly Visitors (SimilarWeb) : 967 Visitors
Average Post Length: 500 – 1,000 Words
One of Most Searched Products: Cheapest Inflatable Hot Tub
How much do they make: I don’t know how much they make.

 

 

29 Other Amazon Affiliate Website Examples

These additional websites, while different, follow a similar pattern of the previously mentioned. It’s a great list to reference what others are doing in the niche website world with Amazon Affiliates.

  1. SmartMonkeyFitness.com – Reviews (Fitness)
  2. DrillsAndDrivers.com – Reviews (Tools)
  3. ChooseWheels.com – Reviews (Transportation)
  4. Lucieslist.com – Reviews/Blog (New Moms)
  5. GrowABeardNow.com – Reviews (Shaving)
  6. Bpillow.com – Reviews (Pillows)
  7. TheBestEspressoMachines.org – Reviews (Coffee)
  8. AGreatShower.com – Reviews (Shower Heads) – Probably copying KitchenFaucetDivas above
  9. ShaverList.com – Reviews (Shaving)
  10. TopDronesForSale.org – Reviews (Drones)
  11. SewingMachineJudge.com – Reviews (Sewing Machines)
  12. TheRoundingSound.com – Reviews (Everything that makes Sound)
  13. KnifeInformer.com – Reviews (All Knifes)
  14. KitchenKnifeGuru.com – Reviews (Kitchen Knifes)
  15. eScooterBox.com – Reviews (Electric Scooters)
  16. MicrophoneGeek.com – Reviews (Microphones)
  17. VacuumJudge.com – Reviews (Vacuums)
  18. Oomphed.com – Reviews (Hair Dryers)
  19. Top5LawnMowers.com – Reviews (Lawn Mowers)
  20. ShredderSelect.com – Reviews (Paper Shredders
  21. BestElectricHoverBoard.com – Reviews (Hover Boards)
  22. MassageChairLand.com – Reviews (Massage Chairs)
  23. CoolCampingGear.com – New Product Site (Camping Gear)
  24. DigitalTrends.com – Reviews (Digital Products)
  25. BestRecliner.net – Reviews (Chairs)
  26. AquariumAdviser.com – Reviews (Fish Stuff)
  27. CanineJournal.com – Reviews (Dog Stuff)
  28. ThoroughlyReviewed.com – Reviews (Everything)
  29. PodcastInsights.com – Reviews (Podcast Equipment)
  30. 101birthdaygift.com – Products like ThisIsWhyImBroke

Thank you

Thanks to some helpful Reddit users, One Man’s Brand and Niche Site Project for some of the inspiration to make this list of 50 happen!

What I learned from 50 different Amazon Affiliate Website Examples

This list is pretty freaking significant with so many lessons learned. I hit on many of these in individual reviews but here are the highlights.

  1. Keyword Research is Key – is the single most important thing you can do. If your keyword is too broad, it’ll get lost in the sea of other websites and if it’s too narrow, no one is going to visit your site.
  2. Review Sites Are Popular – There are a couple exceptions, but most of these successful Amazon Affiliate Websites are just review sites that give people an idea of what the item is like before they buy. There is definitely something to it.
  3. Content is King – The more successful websites had content that was around 1,000 words per post. Google identifies this as better content and it’ll help your search rankings. It can’t just be gibberish though, it helps if you break up the content into 6-8 different sections so it’s easy for the user to navigate while still being lengthy. I used to think 300 words was good and 500 was above and beyond. I’ll likely spend even more time on articles and aim for around 1,000 words per article like my most popular article “Robinhood App Review” at 1,500 words.
  4. Mix High & Low Price Items, but Lean Towards High Price – if you’re doing all this work to push people towards a certain product, make sure that product is worth it. It doesn’t make much sense to review a $5 item with 1,000 words. You should lean towards those higher price items that will give you higher commissions. Remember, you get a percentage of the sale, not a flat fee.
  5. Get People To The Amazon Store – Many of these websites that had more sales, sent more people to the Amazon store. It’s a numbers game, the more people you send the Amazon market place, the more that will buy.

 

 

Conclusion

Affiliate Marketing is easily one of my favorite income streams from our list of ways to make money.

Just imagine how much you could start investing if you owned or two of these niche sites. The thing is, it’s completely do-able. I have the skills (most people do) to create something like this. I am so freaking pumped to start my next niche website! I’m using these lessons learned to start my keyword research now. I’ll follow up on my progress in the upcoming blog posts. I really hope this helps you as much as it did me. It’s really inspirational to see how others are making additional income online with niche websites!

Am I missing any good Amazon Affiliate Website Examples I can add to this list?

I Bought 85 Shares Of DCP With The Recent Oil Crash and Made $500

After the recent oil crash, Andrew bought 85 more shares of DCP stock. He has made over $500 since this purchase. Check out what made him take this risk. #stockmarket #personalfinance #investing #investingtips Typically I spend $100 every 2 weeks on buying a couple of shares of stock. These are usually in companies I already own, but with the recent oil crash, I branched out and bought some shares of DCP Midstream (stock ticker DCP).

Who is DCP Midstream

DCP Midstream is in the oil & gas industry, specifically involved in the transporting, trading, and storing natural gas and natural gas liquids. They own and operate approximately 44 natural gas processing plants and 51,000 miles of natural gas pipeline. Their headquarters is in Denver, Colorado, and they primarily operate in the United States.

FYI – Natural gas is a colorless and odorless gas used in residential, commercial, and industrial applications, often for heating your buildings. It is also used for electric power generation. Natural Gas is often referred to as Earth’s Cleanest Fossil Fuel.

Not My First Time Buying DCP

I have bought shares of DCP in the past. In fact, it was one of the first stocks I ever bought. The reason being it was a company I was familiar with my last job where I did field inspections for oil companies. I often saw their pipelines and like billboards, it became ingrained in my brain.

However immediately after I bought shares of their company, I ended up selling all my shares because while I was familiar with the name, I was less familiar with the company. HINT – You should always know about how a company works if you ever want to invest in them.

I Bought It Again

While COVID-19 was tanking the market with the downgrade of a number of market predictions, at the same time, oil was hitting a real low point. Honestly, it seemed kind of odd to me because we all need oil regardless of the economy, it powers our homes, generates electricity, and pretty much keeps the world moving. It would be great to be 100% electric, but we’re not there, so we need oil & gas.

I have kept DCP on my watchlist for the longest time. When I last looked at it back in 2013, the stock was at $28.10. Then when I looked again during this recent period (March 18), the stock dipped to $2.48. That seemed crazy low to me. So I took a bit of gamble, but knowing that we still needed oil & gas, I bought some shares when it was low:

  • March 18th – I bought 30 shares at $2.48
  • March 18th – I bought 20 shares at $2.32 (it dipped more, so I bought more)
  • March 18th – I bought 5 shares at $2.79 (I forgot I had some extra money in my account)
  • March 30th – I bought 30 shares at $3.23 (because it was still low)

That’s at a total of $$231.20 I invested in DCP

I will add, that while I liked the price I did look at DCP on Yahoo Finance and it showed no major red flags. While I have gotten used to looking at all the key data, I still always look at the “Recommendation Rating” on the right sidebar to see what other analysts recommend. All looked good.

 

 

Am I Happy With My Purchase

I always buy for the long term and always stocks with dividends. This company is no different. I’ll continue to watch DCP, but I feel like I got this stock for a steal. Since that bottom, the stock is now at $8.40.

My initial investment of $231.20 is now worth $714

I will admit, it was a bit more of a gamble than I usually do, so that’s why I only invested a little over $200. I think risks are ok if you’re willing to lose all your money. However, I am happy to ride the waves of DCP and see what happens!

Fun Fact – Charity Raffle Tickets Are Not Tax-Deductible

Fun fact charity raffle tickets are not tax deductible. It’s not fair to bury the lead, so I’ll start off by saying that Charity Raffle Tickets Are Not Tax Deductible. Of course, always check your tax professional, but here’s a short story:

  • How I inaccurately thought I could get a tax deduction and win a raffle (I was wrong)
  • Bought a $170 Charity Raffle Ticket with big prizes and good causes
  • Learned Charity Raffle Tickets Are Not Tax-Deductible

My Idea: Buy Charity Raffle Tickets to donate to good causes and win big prizes

In all honestly, I thought it was a genius idea. I started to see commercials and ads for charity raffles around my hometown of Denver, Colorado as we approached tax season. Which is typically when most people start thinking about their charity donations.

I’ll admit I’ve never done a charity raffle so I wasn’t entirely sure what it entailed or how it worked but the basic concept was clear. I had an opportunity to buy a raffle ticket with my extra money to support a good cause and maybe, possibly, if I was lucky, win some cool prizes!

I Tried It: I Bought $170 Worth Of Raffle Tickets For A Charity

One particular commercial dug into my brain like a song you can’t forget. The commercial was for Mile High Raffle, a raffle to support the Boys and Girls Club of Metro Denver. It promised glorious prizes and impressive odds. It captured me with visuals of dream houses and exotic vacations. I was hooked.

I immediately pulled out my phone (as one has on them at all times) and dived into their website. It didn’t disappoint with their headlines of prizes:

  • Dream House or $2,000,000 cash
  • New Tesla Model S + $25,000 cash
  • South African Safari or $10,000 cash
  • Additional Trips to Greece, Bali, Italy, Maldives and more.

In all, they host a large number of prizes and boast 1 in 20 odds. Which are likely inflated due to all the smaller prizes like vacuum cleaners and headphones, but I was already too deep. I was in the “What If” mindset of lottery gamblers after a Powerball purchase. I wanted my shot.

So I bought a ticket!

I bought a single ticket at $150 (minimum) and an additional $20 ticket for their “weekly” prize drawings because I wanted to play the entire field. I wanted to jump in with both feet to be washed over with the “What If” possibilities. I knew the only way I could win was if I played, and that’s how I justified this large purchase knowing the money went to a good cause.

 

Learned Charity Raffle Tickets Are Not Tax-Deductible

I’ll admit I wanted my cake and eat it too. I thought I could hedge my bets, by buying a dream-filled raffle ticket and even if I didn’t win, I could deduct the money in taxes since it all went to charity (I was wrong).

In my haste to buy a raffle ticket (this is my first charity raffle ticket ever), I missed the FAQ disclaimer at the bottom of the Charity Raffle’s website.

“Are raffle tickets tax-deductible? – No, The IRS does not allow raffle tickets to be a tax-deductible contribution”

They were not mischievous nor did not hide the fact that buying a charity raffle ticket was not tax-deductible, I simply missed it completely on my own.

I don’t believe this would have deterred me in any way from buying a raffle ticket, but I would not have so mistakenly thought I could use a tax deduction if I lost.

The tiniest speck of light in this story is that it encouraged me to dive down the rabbit hole to understand more about the tax implications of charity raffle tickets.

Update 1: It’s been 4 weeks since the raffle began and it continues till the grand prize (Dream House or $2,000,000) is drawn on May 8th, 2020. So far there have been 9 winners in the early bird drawings, but none were me. I’ll let you guys know if I win anything!

Update 2: The contest is now over and I won zero prizes. I feel like a kid at a carnival just beginning to understand how significant the odds are stacked against him. My hopes were risen so high with their 1 in 20 odds of winning, that I lost sight of 19 in 20 people lose. Today I lost and I don’t even have a tax deduction to show for it.

Charity Raffle Tickets Are More Considered Gambling

Charity Raffle Tickets Are More Considered Gambling I discovered a number of resources on this topic, which was great, but they all essentially said the same thing. Raffle Tickets, even for a charity are not tax-deductible.

Websites like Zacks provided some of the most clarity on how the IRS treats charity raffle tickets. Basically, the IRS treats it like gambling or specifically “nondeductible gambling losses” because you’re not selflessly donating to charity, but rather playing the odds in hopes of receiving something of greater value in return.

It just happens that instead of the money going to a casino, it goes to a charity. Since the donation is not in the spirit of a selfless donation, it’s not considered a tax deduction.

Fun Fact: In a similar fashion, when you pay for a ticket at a charity dinner. You can deduct the price of your ticket for taxes, but you must first subtract the value of your dinner/drinks. The reasoning is that only the amount actually going to charity (not feeding you) should be tax-deductible.

Something additional to consider is that while you can’t take a tax deduction from buying a charity raffle ticket. If you actually win any of the prizes, you are required to report those additional earnings on your taxes. Much like how buying a charity raffle ticket is “nondeductible gambling losses” if you win it’s considered “taxable gambling winnings” and must be reported as other income. Ask your local tax professional if you have any questions.

The Wrap Up

Essentially if you want a tax deduction, don’t do a charity raffle! Only do a charity raffle if you want to potentially win cool prizes but feel OK receiving nothing in return (remember 19 in 20 people win nothing). It’s a fun, different, and potentially exciting way to donate to charity, but don’t expect it to help during tax season.

How the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Will Launch the Next Wave of Entrepreneurs and At-Home Jobs

How Coronavirus (COVID-19) will launch the next wave of entrepreneurs and at-home jobs.

If you’re not familiar with the Coronavirus (Covid-19), John Oliver does a great recap. What you may be more familiar with, is the impact it’s having on our daily lives.

  • Some sports are playing without audiences, while others are canceling altogether.
  • Universities are canceling classes and transferring students to online classes.
  • Companies around the nation are requesting people instead work from home.

The theme is Covid-19 has become a catalyst to decentralizing the way we work and live on a large scale. It was once a foreign concept to “work from home”, where only a small handful of jobs allowed this perk. However, in the past couple of weeks with the prevalence of Covid-19, this concept has been praised and encouraged in the name public safety from companies like Alphabet to Zoom. It’s a temporary change, but historically we have adopted these changes as a new norm. This new normal is presenting a new kind of freedom that will launch the next wave of Entrepreneurs and At-Home Jobs.

 

 

We Will Soon Have More At-Home Jobs Than Ever Before

A couple lying in a tent working away from the office. In the last couple of weeks, some of the largest companies in the world (Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Twitter and more) have started to recommend their employees “work from home”, incautious fear of Covid-19. This set a precedent for smaller companies around the nation to also send their workforce to work remotely.

For many, this may only be considered a temporary situation, but from a company perspective, there are many advantages to having a remote workforce.

  • Real Estate is expensive. Not having to pay rent is a HUGE money saver
  • Never buy office supplies again
  • No requirement to buy snacks, food or drinks (coffee, tea, etc.) for an office.
  • Not required to hire employees in your immediate geographical region (larger talent pool)
  • Less employee sick days since they already work from home.
  • More productivity since there’s no commuting or being late, plus lunch is close.

After this pandemic, many companies may retain a large portion of their workforce in “at-home” positions under the reasoning of “Public Safety”. If not for the Covid-19, there are many other illnesses (flu, cold, etc.) and safety concerns (work shootings, etc.) that are drastically minimized by reducing the physical workspace. Plus if we haven’t already eluded to it, there is a great deal of money to be saved by having employees work remotely.

Historically These Trends Result is Lasting Change

Like many things, we can look to the past to provide a glimpse of the future. Here are two precedents that started as a temporary solution to fix a problem but became a mainstay in our society.

 

 

Case Study 1 (Temporary Change In Office Culture Now Permanent) – Remember when you were young and dreamed of having your own office at work? Then those offices were shrunk to cubicles and finally, we arrived at the “Open Office Floor Plan”. The Open Office Floor Plan was a magical creation to increase communication, better productivity and enhanced collaboration as a team without walls. However, in reality, it assaulted your personal space forced to hear every neighbor’s phone call and overflow of EDM music. All while you and your coworkers sat at a tiny desk barely large enough for your computer and a sad cup of coffee.

Yet did any of these complaints result in companies abandoning Open Office Floor Plans? No, this concept has saved companies loads of money in real estate by fitting more people in a smaller space under the banner of “collaboration”. It’s an interesting example of a similar temporary workplace shift now becoming the cultural norm.

A person shopping at a mart.

Case Study 2 (Temporary Change For Public Safety Now Permanent) – A bit of a different example, but one I love about public safety I learned from Adam Ruins Everything. In 1982, there was an incident where 7 people died from cyanide snuck into Tylenol bottles. No one was sure who did it, but because all the news coverage about aspirin bottles possibly containing malicious poison, the world went nuts. With a PR problem that aspirin bottles may contain poison (from this single event), Tylenol introduced the first “tamper-resistant seal” now seen on every bottle.

It was a temporary change meant to reassure the public that their drugs were safe during that troubling time, but other companies adopted the practice on their drugs because they wanted to also appear “safe”. Nowadays we continue to have extra steps and headaches to open aspirin bottles because a once temporary solution became permanent.

While these are just two case studies, we can make a prediction that for the near term (and possibly long term) at-home jobs are going to become more prevalent. If so, it’s going to present a new set of freedoms for employees.

New At-Home Freedom Will Encourage Side Hustles and Entrepreneurship

A man and woman using a computer while working from home.

With a new wave of employees working from home, a new wave of opportunities is presented to people who never had this freedom.

  • Save time comminuting
  • Save money eating from home
  • Save time from idol chit-chat by coworkers stopping at your desk.
  • Less time going out with coworkers since you won’t be forming those in-person bonds
  • Freedom to buy toilet paper off Amazon on your personal computer and complete errands since coworkers nor bosses can look over your shoulder.

These freedoms provide extra time and autonomy to follow your own passions during your normal day. For instance, in the time it would take you to commute to work, you could instead write an article for money or upload your photography onto a stock photography website for extra cash. In between work tasks where you normally try to “look” busy at work. Instead, you could take a quick 5-minute survey to make extra money or post a Craig’s List Ad selling an old guitar for quick cash.

If you’re really ambitious, you can create your own blog to earn money on the side or create your own startup. Using your extra time at work to research and build your own ideas.

Entrepreneurship

We can’t pretend the 4 to 8 weeks the nation is shutting down isn’t going to have some heavy impacts on the economy. Many people will face some difficult realities due to the impacts of Covid-19. Some people will face cutbacks in hours, some will need to take reduced pay while others will lose their jobs. It’s another reminder that careers are not permanent.

It’s times like these when people are against the wall, their entrepreneurial drive is ignited.  It typically starts small by selling candles on Etsy or jewelry on your own blog to make extra money. However, these little experiences show people invaluable skills like understanding a market, supply/demand, how to build an audience and know your audience. A skillset that can be applied to a multitude of passions leading the next wave of entrepreneurs.

This Will Be The New Normal 

Two Lego men in a keyboard work from home during the coronavirus pandemic. The point is, the Covid-19 is catapulting us to a new age of remote work and at-home jobs that’s likely to be around for a while. With it, a new at-home freedom for people to utilize their normally wasted time during the day, and funnel it into side-hustles for extra money and passion projects. All within your home environment free of coworker’s judging eyes.

Yes, We Actually Gave Someone $100 To Start Investing

If you’ve seen our little pop-up or emails, we made a deal with our readers. We promised if you signed up for our email list, we’d do a drawing and a lucky person would win $100 to start investing. We’re doing this!

Remember these pop-ups?

Why Are We Doing This?

Lots of websites do different give-a-ways to encourage people to join their email newsletter. We wanted to try this, but actually, do something cool.

We didn’t want to create a “90 Ways To Save Money” pdf to give away or anything like that for new sign-ups. Frankly it was overdone and in reality, the easiest way to save money is not to spend it. There, that’s my free pdf.

So I asked myself, what do our readers actually want. Well, they want more money to invest with and pay off bills. So what if we gave (PayPal) someone $100 to use to invest. If they used that money to invest, it would grow to a lot more than $100.

I liked this idea.

How The Competition Worked

It was easy, if you signed up for our email list at any point, and still a member by the end of 2017, you would be eligible to win. We would do a drawing at the end of 2017 (actually this week) and whoever was selected, we would PayPal you $100 to do whatever they wanted.

Yes, you could use that $100 to invest, pay down bills or buy new shoes. We obviously can’t control what you will spend that money on, but we will STRONGLY encourage you to invest it. Investing is cool!

Either buy stocks with the Robinhood App, have all your investing done automatically with Betterment or lend it and make interest with Lending Club. It’s completely up to you!

How We Selected A Winner

I’m going to do something no one ever does. Share how many email subscribers they have. It’s a bit scary sharing this because if it doesn’t seem like a lot, you can easily judge us based on how many other people subscribe. So vulnerable moment, go!

We currently have 290 email subscribers to Wallet Squirrel. All of them are eligible to win the $100!

To select a winner, I went to Mailchimp and reviewed the complete list of email addresses we had. This is how I discovered we had 290 email sign-ups. That is freaking awesome!!!!!

Then I went to Google’s Random Generator, basically, just typed “Random Number Generator” in Google, try it here! At the top of the page, there is a generator where you enter the min/max amount and hit “GENERATE. I got “17”.

So at this point, I scrolled down Mailchimp’s list to locate number #17.

 

I’m now shooting them an email to let them know they won! Plus to see if this email works for their Paypal account. So check your email because I may have money for you!

Is The Competition Now Over?

Not even close, I REALLY like this idea. It’s a great way to encourage people to sign up for our email list and everyone gets a chance to win some money to do what you want (investing suggested). =P

In 2018, we’re doing this again but it’s for a chance to win $200 at the end of the year. Sign up and enter!

Amazon HQ2 – Coming to a City Near You, But is It Worth It?

Amazon HQ2 – Coming to a City Near You, But is This is a Good Thing?

Here in Denver, there has been a lot of hype about the RFP that Amazon released to find the best city for their second headquarters or Amazon HQ2. In fact, The New York Times has already picked Denver as the best choice for the new Amazon HQ2.

This only fueled the flames for some intense conversation around the city.

There are a lot of people that want it because of the 50,000 jobs it would bring to the area and amazing economic growth.

Then there are people that are saying, “No” to the new headquarters because it would make housing prices just go that much higher. They say that Amazon has already been a burden on Seattle and its housing market, infrastructure, and so on.

As always, I’m on the fence with what the new Amazon second headquarters could do for Denver and its job market, economy, housing market, and so on.

So let’s take a dive into the facts to find out what a mega-prospect like Amazon HQ2 could do for a city.

Backstory

Back in September, Amazon announced that it will be taking bids from cities to host its new second headquarters. Amazon laid out a set of guidelines that the city has to meet in an 8-page request for proposal (RFP). Below are some of the major guidelines they laid out.

  1. Either existing building sites with opportunity for expansion or a greenfield site of 100 acres
  2. Area where job growth is strong
  3. Labor pool (skilled tech labor) is large and growing
  4. Quality of life is high
  5. Workers can easily get around and out of town
  6. There is space and a willingness to pay to play

Really, Denver meets all of these qualifications. There is plenty of land for development, the tech industry is booming here, quality life is one of the highest in the country, we have a fairly good mass transit system, and we have so much space to play in the mountains.

The only thing that gets me is Denver far enough from Seattle? If I were Amazon, I would be wanting something on the East coast to make travel to Europe easier and cheap.

Then again, Denver International Airport (DIA), is one of the busiest airports in the world with direct flights to Europe and Asia. With Denver being centrally located in the country, it would allow for Amazon’s employees at the second headquarters to get to either continent easily.

Jobs

Amazon says they will create 50,000 new jobs for the headquarters. This has really been scaring people in the Denver metro area because the area is growing fast enough.

People need to calm down and breathe a little bit here.

Amazon is not going to just dump 50,000 new people into the city within one month. The new headquarters will be developed in many phases.

The first three phases planned take the new headquarters up to 3,000,000 square feet. From there it will grow out the campus organically in many more phases to around 8 million square feet by 2027.

Using a ratio of 160 square feet per employee (8,000,000/50,000) that means the first three phases could hire 18,750 people. Each phase would on average hire 6,250 people.

We saw double that moving into Denver last year, and that is only Denver, not the metro area.

Hopefully, Denver can plan transportation system upgrades along with these phases. Though this might be too much forward thinking to ask for from a government agency.

Economic Growth

Amazon claims that it will invest $5 billion into the new second headquarters. This is an astonishing number!

Amazon claims, “its investments in Seattle between 2010 through 2016 resulted in an additional $38 billion to the city’s economy – every dollar invested by Amazon in Seattle generated an additional $1.40 for the city’s economy overall.”

There is no doubt that the Amazon HQ2 would bring a significant economic boost to the city with new high tech jobs, construction jobs, more real estate investment/development, and so on.

But at what cost does this development come with? We will take a look at the answer later on when we look at Amazon’s and Seattle’s relationship.

via GIPHY

Housing Market

Denver’s housing market is gaining value at a ridiculous pace. It is finally starting to slow down so young couples have a chance to purchase a home. A lot of people are worried that if Amazon brings their second headquarters here, it would just spark that value growth again.

I do not blame them. If we take a look at the median house listing prices on Zillow for Seattle proper they were $351,000 back in October 2011. Six years later, they are now $699,000 or a 99% increase!

In Denver proper, we are not far off from Seattle’s growth. Since October 2011 we have already seen an 83% growth in median house listing prices as well. The question is if Amazon comes to town, could we see our median listing prices basically double again? I do not want to live in a city where the median house listing is over $600,000.

Since I already own a home, I am for more growth. In the past year, our house has already gained nearly $40,000 in value!

The issue is, would I ever be able to move somewhere else in the city with prices so high? Even though our house value could double, I might never get to see that money because we could not afford to move somewhere else; unless we move out of state which I do not want to do.

Infrastructure

Like most cities, Denver has congestion issues on the roads. This has only become worse with the extreme growth the metro area has seen.

It is common sense if you have more people, the more wear and tear there will be on the roads.

Luckily Denver has been very aggressive at implementing a light rail system over the past decade or so. Plus, the area just made news by being one of the finalists for Ellon Musk’s Hyperloop project.

Though all of this effort might be a little too late.

According to Inrix Inc., Denver ranks 21st out of 240 in the U.S. for the amount of time drivers spend stuck in traffic. Which is right in line with Denver metro area’s population as the 19th most populated in the nation.

Even with this being said, because of Denver’s continued growth, it does need to invest more in its transportation system whether it be wider roads, light rail, or train to keep up.

via GIPHY

Seattle

Denver needs to remember not to be blinded by the dollar signs that the Amazon HQ2 will bring to the area.

We need to listen to Seattle’s warning as there are many side effects that will come along with the new headquarters.

According to one Seattle blogger, he warns us of horrible traffic and higher living costs. Others claim of constant construction, which we already have in Denver, so it will probably just get worse?

Rent is already high in Denver. Based on what has happened in Seattle, if Amazon came to Denver this trend would not slow down. It probably would just get worse.

These are all things Denver, or any other city, need to start tackling even before they get the good news that the mega-prospect is coming to town. When a company like Amazon comes to town, the city needs to ramp up its speed of work to keep up with the speed at which Amazon moves.

Conclusion

I believe that having the Amazon HQ2 in Denver would be an amazing boost to Denver’s already booming economy. It will ensure continued growth for years to come.

I also believe that Amazon will do amazing things to help the Denver community because of the resources the company has. It really could become a leader in investing back into the Denver area and its charitable organizations.

On the flipside, Denver needs to come up with a stronger plan to speed up its infrastructure development so it can absorb the increase in traffic that is sure to come.

Also, Denver can hopefully continue to help those younger couples trying to buy their first homes. Currently, there are grants to help out but they are fairly selective. Maybe making these grants cover a larger group to help more people that will struggle to find affordable homes.

Overall, what it comes down to, are we, as Denverites, willing to deal with these negative side effects to host such a large company?

CoSchedule Review: The Social Media Calendar I chose over Buffer & MeetEdgar

If you recall from my June Income Report, my July goal is to build a social media calendar to help grow our Social Media audiences. Currently, Social Media produces only 17% of our traffic, so I wanted to tap into that potential. A social media calendar would regularly/consistently stay in contact with those audiences. So I compared 3 different social media tools for this CoSchedule Review to do just that, manage Wallet Squirrel’s social media.

Obviously, from the title, I choose CoSchedule for Wallet Squirrel, but anyone wanting to dramatically improve their Social Media game should look this over.

CoSchedule Review Header Image

The Three Different Social Media Tools I Tested:

MeetEdgar – This tool allows you to automate your social media messages. You can write a Tweet/Facebook Post/LinkedIn Message and have it automatically repost every month, 3 months or year so that you’re never running out of content. While this is a great tool, the interface was a bit clunky for me in the 14-day trial and for the price of $45 per month, I wanted a bit more than just a backlog of messages automatically posting.

Buffer – This allows you to set up a queue of social media messages on Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn where you can write messages beforehand, and Buffer will publish them based on timeslots you decide. Think of writing one message then selecting all the different social media platforms you want to send it out to. This eliminates going into each social media account and copy/ pasting your message each time. You can also schedule retweets so you don’t have a bunch of messages going out at once.

I actually use Buffer at work and love it. The biggest downfall is that once you send a message, you can’t automatically reschedule it to be sent again. Since Tweeting only hits 10% of your audience at a time. You’d manually have to add the same tweet over and over and over. It’s just a giant waste of time.

CoSchedule – This is really a combination of the two. CoSchedule allows you to see a full calendar of messages going out and automatically ReQueue them to go out again if they’re popular. I’ve done the 14-day trial and now I’m a paid subscriber. I’m a bit of a fan. Let me dive a bit more into CoSchedule.

I chose CoSchedule, but what is it?

Because CoSchedule loves demonstration videos, here is a brief CoSchedule Review Video of their software.

To me, CoSchedule is a visual calendar that you can see when your different social media posts are going out. You can schedule a post in advance and automatically repost (they call it ReQueuing) popular content so your audience doesn’t miss great content. Here is a screenshot of what Wallet Squirrel’s calendar looks like after using it for two weeks during the CoSchedule Review.

CoSchedule Review Social Media Calendar

How I use CoSchedule for my Social Media Calendar

Not going to lie, it’s a bit intimidating at first, as is any software. It integrates into a number of social media platforms and WordPress, it took a bit to get my head around it. However starting off, I primary use it for my social media accounts.

How I Setup Social Media Campaigns

This is a term I’ve heard as a buzz word, but I never really knew what it meant until this CoSchedule Review. I’ve come to learn that a social media campaign is a series of social media messages posted at different times, with all the same purpose. Like the 1,000 tweets you read when Lady Gaga launches a new album. Those set of tweets, collectively are a social media campaign.

For me personally, I use their social media campaign to promote new blog content. I click their campaign button and I set up a template for my new Income Reports. To describe the screenshot below, I add the URL of the post I want to promote and it automatically inserts that hyperlink into a series of messages scheduled to go out that day, the next day, a week later and a month later. All the times are completely customizable. Each message has a default basic message like “check this out”, but I tweak these each time. This is one of my favorite features because it provides a carpet bombing of social media messages for new content over an entire month, created in seconds.

CoSchedule Review Social Media Campaign

How I Automatically Repost Popular Content

CoSchedule has a popular feature called “ReQueue” which creates a cache of messages that will automatically be published if you have a gap in your social media calendar. Let’s say I want to post 3 tweets each day. If I don’t have a social media posts going out on Friday. CoSchedule can pull an old social media post from my library of social media messages to fill that gap.

Oh my goodness it’s so nice to automatically repost evergreen content

For example last Sunday while writing this CoSchedule Review, I filled my ReQueue library with fun social media messages promoting old content. That way, I will always have at least 3 tweets going out a day. You can even set categories for your ReQueue library such as “Evergreen Content”, “Promotional Content” like a referral link to Bluehost website services or any categories you can think of. Here are the categories I’ve created so far.

CoSchedule Review ReQueue Categories Screenshot

Quick CoSchedule Review Pros/Cons

Pros

  • The software allows you to create an entire social media campaign, aka numerous social media messages on different platforms, in seconds
  • CoSchedule allows you to automatically “ReQueue” popular content so that it never disappears in the social media abyss. It automatically posts old content whenever you have gaps in your social media calendar.
  • It has the pros of both Buffer and MeetEdgar.
  • The really clean design makes looking over your calendar very easy.

Cons

  • It’s pretty pricey, it says $39 per month for their solo blogger plan, but it doesn’t include the ReQueue feature which everyone wants. I especially wanted. If you want ReQueue, you need to pay another $30. So in reality, it cost $79 per month. WTF! This is one of the most expenseive social media calendars I’ve found.
  • The Social Media Analytics isn’t included in the base $79 per month I’m currently paying. If you want analytics, you need to pay more. Yuk, at least Buffer had at least basic analytics in their $10 per month plan.

Why I chose CoSchedule over Buffer and MeetEdgar

As a current user of Buffer, it is great but there are days that I don’t have time to post a new message to social media and my Buffer queue ran out. I needed something with Buffer’s queue feature, but also automatically posted content like MeetEdgar. I considered getting both of these since combined they’re cheaper than CoSchedule, but I prefer to use one piece software that incorporates the best of both.

Plus there are other benefits of CoSchedule that I haven’t touched on during this CoSchedule Review. Mainly because these features are singularly what I wanted the software for. It’s currently a must if I want to grow our Wallet Squirrel social media presence. Not just rapid firing social media messages, but creating conversations and dialogue while reminding our audience of older content. Those combined features won me over.

Conclusion

I’m willing to try CoSchedule out for a couple months to see how this goes, use my referral code for 14 DAYS FREE if you’re interested in trying it too. So far I’ve been impressed with the power this software provides during my CoSchedule Review. Plus their blog has so many great tips on social media you don’t need to pay for. In 6 months I’ll do an ROI “Return on Investment” Analysis to follow up on my progress.

So far, I’d honestly recommend it to any blogger who can afford to spend a ridiculous $79 per month (save 50% if you write a review). It’s a great tool to visualize a social media calendar that’s smart enough to fill in the gaps. Like a Social Media Manager would. Follow us on Wallet Squirrel’s Facebook and Twitter page to see it in action.

Are there any other tools you use I didn’t mention?

*Disclaimer I wasn’t paid for this review, but CoSchedule does offer a 50% discount if you write a review. Since I love saving money, we did this review but maintained our honest opinion and user experience.