Forever Affiliate Review Part 6: Building Profitable Sites
Hey everybody! Today I begin reviewing Phase 2 of the Forever Affiliate course.
I hope those of you that bought the course are further along than me! This last week has been crazy – on Saturday I put together a list of about 100 niches using one of the techniques Andrew teaches, but then life happened and I haven’t had the chance to put them through the product analysis funnel yet. I probably should have put them through the funnel as I found them, but it’s so addictive and I was on a roll! 😛
Now, on to Phase 2! This phase is divided into 4 parts:
- Site Setup
- Post 2012 Content Creation
There are a lot of videos in here, so today we’ll just go over the site setup part, and I’ll continue with the rest of Phase 2 next time.
Review of Phase 2: Site Setup
First there’s the another 30-second intro video, and then an overview video. I like that Andrew explains what we’re going to learn in each section before we start.
He says that in this section of the course, we’ll be turning the niches we found in Phase 1 into profitable sites. We’re going to learn his strategies for building the sites as profitably and quickly as possible, of the highest quality as possible, and his strategies for bringing the first visitors to the site as quickly as possible. That was a lot of “as possibles”! 😛
Domains, Hosting, and WordPress Installation
In step 1 Andrew teaches us how to choose a good domain name, which extensions to get, when we can use certain types of names and when we can’t, and what to do instead in the latter situation.
It’s good that he’s teaching to get domains from a separate place than the hosting. I don’t think he mentioned why, but I’ve noticed that hosting companies overcharge for domain names and domain name privacy. They will also charge you to transfer your domains if you ever decide to switch to another company.
He walks us through the registration process and how to set up our nameservers. I’m glad he recommended adding domain privacy here, that’s very important if you don’t have a P.O. box so that your home address doesn’t show up all over the internet.
Oops, he forgot to mention something in the video regarding authority domain purchases. He added a note about it underneath the link to the video on the main Phase 2 page.
In step 2 Andrew walks us through registering our hosting. If you’ve already done this before you can skip these first few videos, but it’s good for newbies that he goes through it step-by-step on video.
In step 3 he shows how to install WordPress with Fantastico, how to clean up our WordPress installation, and what changes to make.
Installing a Theme (paid)
Ok, this video is bad. Andrew is using an old version of the paid theme he recommends (he even mentions it in the video) – the problem is, I have the new version and it’s totally different.
In the new version of this theme they did a total overhaul on how it works, and even if you’ve installed many blogs and themes before, I think there’ll still be a steep learning curve before you can use this.
I bought it during the launch and still haven’t used it because I haven’t had time to sit down and figure it out yet. I thought I would wait until they added tutorials, but that hasn’t happened yet. I’ve also been waiting months for the promised skins that were supposed to come with it when the theme launched, but they’re still “in production”.
Anyway, enough with my rant! 😉 You can probably see I’m not too happy with that theme company right now, but that’s not Andrew’s fault. He should have tested the new version before recommending it though, because people who get this paid theme are probably going to be totally confused once they’ve installed it. It might be powerful for those who know how to use it, but quick and easy it is not, especially for newbies.
Instead, I would recommend using the free theme he shows you in the next video – or any other free theme that meets the requirements. But it’s probably safest to go with the one he recommends, because a lot of “free” themes have sponsored links in the footer or encrypted scripts hidden in the html. It’s also the quickest and easiest to set up, because it doesn’t have a lot of extra options.
If you’d prefer a professional theme, I’d say rather go with Studiopress or Profits Theme – these are the themes I use for most of my sites.
With Studiopress you get the Genesis Framework plus a beautiful child theme of your choice for about the same price as the basic version of the theme Andrew recommends – or you can just get the Genesis Framework on it’s own and pay $30 less.
The Profits Theme costs $10 more and the basic skins it comes with aren’t as beautiful as the Studiopress themes, but it comes with a lot of them so your sites will all look different.
It also has the ability to make opt-in forms, membership sites, sales pages, etc. You probably won’t need most of those features now, but if that’s something you’d like to do in the future, then you won’t have to shell out again for a whole new theme.
Installing a Theme (free)
Here Andrew gives the free alternative theme he recommends. He then shows how to upload the theme through WordPress, and the settings you need to change. He also shows you how he makes a simple header in Paint, and how to upload it to your blog.
Next he shows you where to go to make a menu, but not how exactly to do it. It’s quite easy to figure out, but I’ll cover it anyway in the WordPress tutorials I’ll start posting soon.
The Only Plugins That Matter For Affiliates
We don’t have to limit ourselves to the videos covered in this plugin, but these are the ones that Andrew says we can’t do without. All the plugins in this sections are ones I know about and/or use already. There is one that he uses in a different way though.
In the first video he shows how to install and configure each of these plugins, except for one which he covers in the next video.
There are two interesting tips here that I haven’t done before. I’ve actually accidentally done something similar to one of them on one of my sites, but I think I’m going to try it like this instead.
I was using a plugin similar to this last one, but after seeing this video I switched. It’s much easier to use than the one I was using before!
In the second video Andrew shows us what settings to put in the SEO plugin. I usually just install it and hope for the best, lol! I really like that he explains why we’re using these settings too. He also shares some very good advice and tips here about our site title and description.
By the way – if you’re using a Studiopress theme or the Profits Theme, I don’t think you need to worry about installing this SEO plugin. These two themes already have SEO settings built in – and I just saw that with Studiopress the changes he tells us to make are already the defaults! 🙂
Google Analytics Setup
In this step Andrew walks us through setting up Google Analytics, and shows us how to insert the tracking code into our blog by using the built-in HTML editor in WordPress.
It’s good that he shows you how to do this, but you can just install a free plugin to do it instead. I think it’s better than pasting it straight into the html of your theme, because otherwise it will just be removed the next time your theme gets updated.
Extras for Affiliates
In the last 2 videos Andrew shows a couple of extra things we should add.
For the first one he gives us the exact code to use – this is handy, because I remember struggling a lot to get things like this aligned correctly.
Then he shows us how to use one of those plugins we installed earlier that we need now. There are two good tips in here – there’s one especially good one that I’m not doing on my sites yet, and I really need to start. There’s already been a few times when I wished I had done this from the beginning.
Oh dear, I didn’t know this second one was necessary for this specific type of site! Andrew gives us examples of what to write and how to exclude this from the main part of our site.
Lol, I was actually trying to do something like this yesterday for something else. I just installed this last plugin too 🙂
End of Today’s Forever Affiliate Review
Today’s Forever Affiliate videos mostly covered stuff I already know, but I found a few good tips too. I’m glad I finally know what settings to use in the SEO plugin!
With the exception of the paid theme video, it’s all good information that beginners need to know, and he shows everything step-by-step in the videos.
Here’s a bonus tip from me: the examples he gives are extremely useful, but don’t use his exact words. Rewrite or reword everything, or you’ll make it easy for people to find your sites and steal your niches.
In the next part of my review, I’ll cover the section on post 2012 content creation, and maybe the last 2 sections of Phase 2 as well, depending on how much time I have. I have to wake up in less than 5 hours to go fetch my gran from the airport – I haven’t seen her for a few years, so I’m really looking forward to spending time with her in the next few days! 😀
See you soon!