Make Money For College
Tired of being a tapped-out college student with empty pockets and an empty wallet?
When I was in college, I learned how to create a simple website that ended up making about $6,000 in nine months.
Now that may not sound like a lot, but when you're a student with no money for college, any amount you earn is a true blessing.
I don't think many college students realize how a simple information-rich website can generate money on the web. The catch is you have be unique and a bit innovative.
NO Get-Rich Quick Schemes Here
Before I go any further, if you're looking for a "get rich quick scheme" then stop reading now. There is no such thing as "fast money" or a "free lunch" on the Internet no matter what you've read or heard. Think about it. If it were that easy, everyone would have a money-making website.
If you want to make money for college, be prepared to invest some time.
How I Got Started Making Money
I create websites on topics that interest me. For example, one of my sites is called flat-stomach-exercises.com. It helps people tone and flatten their stomach, and I earn money by displaying ads on my site and recommending fitness related products.
For example, Amazon.com has one where you can refer their books/products from your website and they pay you a percentage of any sale made as a result from the links from your site.
You've probably seen sites that display Amazon books and products and didn't realize those webmaster are making money by referring their visitors to those products.
I didn't have to hire anyone to help me create my site. I used a beginner-friendly web host called Site Build It! and I do all the updates for my site from the comfort of my home without the help of any programmers.
Here's another idea...The Video Game Fanatic
Let's say you love video games. Lots of college students do.
You could create a site that contains cheats on your favorite games. Notice I narrowed the topic down to zero in on a specific niche. "Video games" is too general. The more narrow your topic the better.
Top-video-game-cheats.com would be a good name.
Then to get traffic to your website, you can list your site for free at www.dmoz.org. Once you're listed here you'll eventually show up in Google (my #1 free traffic source).
MSN is also pretty easy to get listed with. In fact, they add you quicker than Yahoo and Google.
Next, you could join Amazon.com's free affiliate program and recommend Xbox, Playstation and Nintendo games from your site.
Every time someone buys a game as a result of your site's recommendation/link, you earn a commission and Amazon tracks all of your sites activity so you'll know how much you're earning at any given time.
Amazon will provide you with the code and links you need so you receive the proper credit for any product you refer. And what's even better is even if someone buys something else while they are on Amazon's site, you get credit for that sale too.
As long as the person went to Amazon as a result of your link from your site, you'll earn a commission for anything they purchase.
Keep in mind, you don't take any orders or talk with any customers, all you do is create your own separate web site with unique information on a specific theme and link to Amazon's web site via your own recommendation, articles, etc.
So while you're off in class taking final exams, your website is sitting out in cyberspace just racking up revenue.
I have to warn you, though.
Be prepared to get addicted. When I was in college, I found myself going to the library after every class checking my website earnings and updating my site.
It was worth it. though. To be honest, I really wasn't interested in my major and I always wanted to be my own boss. Thanks to my websites, I was able to quit my full time job 7 years after I graduated.
It's Your Turn. Make Money For College Now!
I don't know if you realize it or not but there are thousands and thousands of free affiliate programs out there. I bet many of your favorite stores offer online affiliate programs. Check their sites to see if they do (Best Buy, Gap, etc.)
The best advice I can give you right now is to first choose a topic you are passionately interested in. It could be anything from sports to music, but it should be something you don't mind researching and writing a lot of content about.
The key to making money with an affiliate program is to create your own site about the topic with TONS and TONS of information. The more info you have and the more often you can update your site, the better.
Because when you have a site that's filled with info, people will bookmark it and return often. These loyal visitors that return often are the ones that are going to make the purchases and help you earn the money you need.
Search engines (especially Google) love large sites and they tend to rank them higher in the search results.
Here's another example...
Let's say you love rap music. You could create a gigantic rap lyrics web site (rap-lyrics-4-u.com, for example) that includes lyrics from every song you can think of. You can even have some of your college buddies help you add additional lyrics so your list grows quickly.
The bigger your site, the more likely people will return often to reference it. Then you can list your site with Google for free and begin to get traffic from all over the web.
Next, you earn money by joining free affiliate programs sponsored by music sites like Amazon.com, CDNow.com, etc. Throughout your site you can make recommendations for the latest music, DVD's, etc and earn commissions when people order.
Remember...you don't take the orders. You don't talk with the customers. All you do is maintain your own lyrics web site and send people to Amazon, CDNOW, etc. so they can order.
The affiliate company keeps track of your orders via a tracking link. At the end of their pay period, you receive a check for all the commissions you've made.
Google Can Earn You $$$ Too!
Here's an added bonus and how I make a lot of my money.
Google.com also has a free affiliate program where you display their text ads on your web pages. You earn $$ every time someone clicks on an ad from your site. With all my sites combined, I earn nearly $2,000 per month just on that affiliate program alone.
How to Begin Making Money
Before going any further I have to warn you. DO NOT use a free web host to create your site. You'll be doomed before you even begin.
I know it's tempting to try this with myspace or AOL but there is a big problem with free sites. They get no respect in the search engines, and if Google, MSN and Yahoo ignore your site, you'll never make much money.
The search engines are going to be your cheapest source of traffic (it's free!) and if they don't add you to their index, you'll struggle trying to bring in visits to your site. No visits means no money.
Try it now. Go to Google.com and do a search for "video game cheats" or any keyword phrase. Notice you see no myspace or freebie sites in the listings. That's not a coincidence.
Search engines look for serious sites that live on their own domain (yoursite.com) because they know a lot of the free sites are cluttered with junk, have no clear theme, and do not last long.
You can get a domain name and web host for cheap at www.websitepalace.com or your favorite domain registrar.
Next, you need to decide what your site will be about. Again, make sure you choose a topic you really have an interest in. I cannot stress how important this step is.
So many people make the mistake of trying to create a one or two-page web site that is nothing but an advertisement for the company they are affiliated with.
Their site ends up looking something like this...
Welcome to my shopping web site. Here you can discover great deals from J Crew! Below you'll find pictures of some of their cool shorts, T-shirts, shoes, etc. Just click the links to buy.
Thanks for visiting.
J Crew Shorts - $34.99 (links to affiliate site)
J Crew T shirts - $24.99 (links to affiliate site)
J Crew Shoes - $85.00 (links to affiliate site)
Please come back and visit my web site!
First of all, Google, Yahoo and most other popular search engines and directories will not add this site to their database because it doesn't have enough unique information. It's just a one-page advertisement for other websites.
Your site should have its own theme and be flooded with information on your topic. Then within your stories and articles, you offer links to the companies you're affiliated with (Amazon.com, etc.)
The links should be blended in naturally with your content and appear more like recommendations instead of blatant advertisements.
In the above example, the author would probably get much better results if they had created a site about a specific fashion topic like "fashion no-no's" or some kind of helpful information about fashion. Then they could have incorporated recommendations which would include the links to the stores they're affiliated with.
This is what happens when people do not take the time and effort to create a site they care passionately about. You should choose a topic know a lot about and can generate pages and pages of info.
If you just plan on creating a one or two-page site that advertises the company you're affiliated with, then don't waste your time. You won't make any money this way. Your site should have 30 pages of content at the very least.
Don't panic about the number of pages. You don't have to create all 30 pages at once. If you do just two pages a week, your site will grow pretty quickly.
Remember...your goal is to create a site people will want to bookmark and a site that the search engines will love. Google loves large sites. So the more pages you have, the greater chance you'll get more traffic.
You don't have to choose a subject with high-priced products. You can make just as much or more by joining Amazon.com's affiliate program and refer their music as you could with almost anything else.
Even though the products are cheaper, you'd have a much better chance of getting larger orders than you would for products that were $400 each.
Start Building Your Site Today!
Now start by registering a domain name to begin creating your website.
Take your time. Do it right the first time and the rewards can be quite sweet. This money for college can end up becoming a secondary income for the rest of your life...or perhaps even a primary income.
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