How do you make money online?

by Lyndon on December 17, 2014

Lyndon how do you make money online? This is a question I get all the time.

There are two answers to this question

  1. To build a successful online business takes an immense amount of work. It just isn’t something that happens overnight. If That was how it is we would all be millionaires.
  2. If you want to make a few extra dollars (a few hundred or maybe even thousand a month) on the Internet it really is easy. You just need to sit down and work. You can launch a website, a blog, create software, Or create a mobile application. Writing software or apps can be complicated but building a website or launching a blog really is simple.
  3. Making money with your computer
    When I explain to students, fiends, and strangers just how simple it can be to launch a blog and monetize it using methods such as AdSense and affiliate marketing I see their eyes light up. It is really exciting and invigorating to see people captivated about the idea of creating a blog and making a little (or a lot) of extra money.

    I think that it would be really neat to launch a series showing exactly how to set up a blog to make money. I figure since my friends want to hear about it my readers probably do as well.

    The plan is to demonstrate exactly how to launch a blog from beginning to end. This means is that all tasks will be explained in depth so that visitors with no web development or online marketing experience can follow along.

    We will start by picking a topic (I have a funny one in mind) and finish with the launch of our new website. With any luck the website will make a few dollars here and there and I will continue to update the blog with the financials.

    Most of the instructions will be done via screen capture, so you will have a video that shows exactly where I was clicking and how I did what I did. You will also see just how simple and quick it can be to launch a website.

    It should be a fun ride, the first video will be coming in the next week or so.

    Subscribe in the top right corner of the blog if you would like to receive updates as videos are uploaded.

    { 0 comments }

So what have you been you up to?

by Lyndon on December 10, 2014

The last few years have been a whirlwind.  I have had the pleasure of travelling a fair amount, the fortune of meeting and marrying the love of my life, the excitement of investing in real estate, and the luxury of spending lots of time with friend and family.

As much as I tried I just couldn’t seem to get into the internet marketing thing so I decided to take a break, which ended up being an extended break.   In some ways it’s unfortunate because I more or less abandoned a few sites that were earning decent money and would have sold for a solid amount of money but I think the break was needed.

Professionally:

A lot of people don’t realize this but I do not work in the SEO/Online Marketing space on a fulltime basis. My career started as a web developer and for the past few years I have been working for the Government in Canada. I currently specialize in integration (we make enterprise (and small) systems work together) using tools such as Informatica Power Center and Microsfoft BizTalk.

I have had the pleasure of travelling a fair amount, the fortune of meeting and marrying the love of my life, the excitement of investing in real estate, and the luxury of spending lots of time with friend and family.

I also decided to start investing in real estate in 2012 which has been an awesome experience. I’ll talk about it in greater depth in later posts but we (I have a business partner) have taken a buy and hold approach and currently have 4 properties (8 doors) with a value of about $1.2 million. We are pulling in nearly 10K a month in rent. The truth is it’s not a get rich quick scheme – we have a lot a monthly obligations such mortgages, heat, water, insurance, property taxes, etc. We are at a crossroad and currently trying to decide what our next move will be on the real estate side of things. Do we buy another multifamily home, a small apartment block? Do we look at investing outside of Winnipeg? Do we just hold what we have?

Online – I recently launched a couple of small websites. I’ll get into them in subsequent posts but they are in niches I am not all that interested in so I am going to slowly start switching gears.

Personally:

In 2010 I met an amazing woman and we recently got married. She is awesome. She is nuts, funny, crazy, smart, insane, hard working, bonkers, a total babe, and a total lunatic. Haha, on a serious note, she’s pretty amazing and she really pushes me and supports me (personally and professionally).

My sister had two beautiful children – Katelyn who is now 5 and Eason who is 3. They are my next-door neighbors and we hang out a lot! My wife Amanda has a large amazing family and we spend a lot of time with them as well. In fact we have 10 kids under 10 over right now making Christmas Cookies (they get to decorate and eat their own cookies).

I have had the pleasure of travelling a fair amount in the past few years. There were many trips to Toronto where my wife was going to school, an extended vacation to Australia to surf and soul search, trips to Hawaii to surf and party, a few trips to Portugal where my wife’s parents live, a couple of trips to California to surf, Miami for coffee and ice cream, Vancouver for crab fishing and Jager Bombs, Mexico for relaxation, a few weeks in Vegas for work, and a few weeks in vegas for play, a few trips to Minneapolis for chartered football games (which I organized), and many many trips to Kansas City to watch the Kansas City Chiefs!

That summarizes the past few years at a very high level.  It’s been an awesome ride.  In the coming weeks we will delve in the real estate and web properties I am working on in greater depth.

Thanks for reading.  Show some love and comment below and follow me on twitter.

{ 6 comments }

Let the words pour…

by Lyndon on December 5, 2014

I decided I am going to take another stab at this blogging thing.  I am going to take a different direction than I originally intended years ago when I launched (I use that term lightly) this site.

I originally launched this site in 2009 – I can’t believe it’s been that long – with the intention of blogging about affiliate marketing.  I struggled with it for a few reasons:

  • I was having success using methods that were new but could be copied easily; I wasn’t always ready to share
  • I often didn’t feel like writing about affiliate marketing
  • I wasn’t an authority on the topic and wasn’t comfortable writing on the topic at times

So why write now?

For me

I feel like blogging now.  I have been capturing thoughts and ideas on pad and paper for a little while because I find it keeps me motivated and on track.  Blogging takes things to the next level for me.  Something about putting myself in the “public lens” makes me push harder to be/do better.

Because I feel like it

I hate writing.  When I launch a web site, I hire writers.  I don’t normally enjoy blogging.  But lately I have had the desire, so I’ll do it.

To become a better and/or faster writer

It takes the average person a long time to write a quality blog post (or content in general).  It takes me an eternity.  I’d like to improve.  Practice makes perfect and this will be the playground in which I practice.

I am back online

I haven’t done much online in years.  I have been concentrating on my career, real estate investing, my relationship(s) (with my wife, family, and friends), and just having fun.  I have been getting back online preparing to launch a few small businesses. I will have some experiences to share.

People still visit this site

I still get traffic to my blog and meet people who say they checked my blog out before meeting me in person.  I have 2 posts since 2010.  Those poor visitors.

Cash-esh

I am confident I can grow the traffic to the blog if I stick to it. Traffic is money.

New Topic(s)

Most importantly the blog is just going to be me “letting the words pour”. I am not going to worry about focusing on affiliate marketing or any one subject.  It will be the Lyndon Blog.  Most of my posts will likely end up being business related as that’s what interests me and what others ask me about most often but I am not going to try box my thoughts or words.

The time has come, I am back online, and feel like blogging.  I’ll take another stab at posting a few times a week and if I can’t last more than a few months I’ll know it’s just not for me and I’ll spend a few extra hours a week on other projects.

The next few posts will catch you up with what I have been up to for the past few years  and the projects I am working on now.  After that, we will see where this thing takes us.

Thanks for stopping by…

Lyndon

{ 1 comment }

Wanted Junior Online Marketer

by Lyndon on September 25, 2012

Hey Kids,

I am looking for a junior SEO/Online Marketer who wants to mess around with a site of mine.  Here is the short version of the story – it has made over $100K in the past 4-5 years but is down in the dumps due to letting a lack of maintenance, the site being down for a few days, Google updates and other crap a person who cared would never let happen.  The site is probably making $50-$100 per month right now.

Let's Split Some Cash
Here is the good news – if you want to mess with it, I will give you 50% of monthly profits.  It honestly would not be hard to get it back to $1000+ and take half of it.

The site is a simple affiliate web site, it is about 5 pages total, but there is an opportunity to add content/a blog.  With increased traffic supplemental monetization methods can be investigated. Basic SEO has not been applied to the Web site.

If you have time and want to mess around with the site email and tell me why you are totally awesome.  I don’t need your resume, they are so 90’s.

I’ll give you the URL etc. if we end up working together.

Thanks for your interest.

Lyndon

 

{ 1 comment }

The Facebook like button allows visitors to like your website (or an individual webpage). Setting this up is a little tedious but I’ve put together a step by step guide for you. First let’s take a look at how the Like button works and talk about why you should add it to your web site.

After adding the code to your website your visitors will be able to click the like button.  When they click the button the counter beside the button will increase by one.  The visitor will have the option to add a comment to their like (which will be displayed on their Facebook wall), and finally a like to your website will be placed on your loyal visitors Facebook wall for all their friends to see.

Example of a Facebook Like Button on a Webpage

Example of a Facebook Like Button on a Webpage

Clicking the Like Button

Clicking the Like Button

A link will be posted to the vistors profile

A link will be posted to the vistors profile

Add the Like Button to a Website

Note:  we will learn how to add a like button to individual pages and posts further down.

Step 1:  Get  an Application ID

Visit the Application Dashboard and create an Application ID https://developers.facebook.com/apps/ (open in new window)

  1. Click Create New App
  2. Enter your Website/Business Name in the Application Name, leave all other values blank and click continue
  3. Copy your application ID

Step 2: Create and upload a Chanel File

Copy and paste the following code into a blank text file, save as channel.html and upload to the root of your website.

<script src="//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js"></script>

Step 3: Create and upload a JavaScript File

  1. Copy and paste the text below into a text file.
  2. Replace YOUR_APP_ID with your application id (click here to find it)
  3. Replace HTTP://WWW.YOUR_DOMAIN.COM with the address to your website.  Note that the protocol http vs https and domain (does your website use www in front of the address?  If not exclude it) matter.
  4. Save the file as fb.js and upload to the root of your website.

  window.fbAsyncInit = function() {
    FB.init({
      appId      : 'YOUR_APP_ID', // App ID
      channelUrl : 'HTTP://WWW.YOUR_DOMAIN.COM/channel.html', // Channel File
      status     : true, // check login status
      cookie     : true, // enable cookies to allow the server to access the session
      xfbml      : true  // parse XFBML
    });

    // Additional initialization code here
  };

  // Load the SDK Asynchronously
  (function(d){
     var js, id = 'facebook-jssdk', ref = d.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];
     if (d.getElementById(id)) {return;}
     js = d.createElement('script'); js.id = id; js.async = true;
     js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js";
     ref.parentNode.insertBefore(js, ref);
   }(document));

Step 4: Copy and paste the following code just under the body of your html page.

The following code should be pasted into a template file or into the body each page you plan on adding the like button to.

Once again change the domain to you website domain:

<div id="fb-root"></div>
<script src="http://www.lyndonreid.com/fb.js"></script>

Step 5: Generate the Code required to place the Like button on your Website.

  1. You can visit Facebook’s developer website to generate the code you will place on your website.    Click here to open the page in a new window

    You are going to have three choices HTML5, XFBML, or IFRAME.  You are going to want HTML5 or XFBML.  Personally I’d go with HTML5 the only drawback to going this route is that older browsers do not support HTML5.  If you are targeting an audience that maybe using older browsers (check you analytics) consider using XFBML.
  2. Click Get the Code (choose HTML5) *if you choose XFBML you will have to add the XML namespace
  3. Copy the code from second text area.  It should look something like this but have your website address.
    <div data-href=”http://lyndonreid.com” data-send=”true” data-width=”450″ data-show-faces=”true” data-font=”verdana”></div>
  4. Paste the code onto your web site where you want the like button to show.

Enjoy

You should now have a working like button.   The good news is that you have set up the foundation to add other social plugins so if you want to do more it will be much easier.

Not working for you?  Leave a comment below and I will help as soon as possible!

Putting this together was time consuming and tedious.  Please consider buying me a coffee to fuel my next post if it help you. In the spirit of honesty, I am just another Internet Marketer trying to make a few bucks. Your contribution is appreciated.




I’ll Buy Lyndon
a Coffee ($3.00)
I’ll Buy Lyndon
a Beer($6.00)
I’ll choose
my Own Donation

{ 5 comments }

Running a successful campaign can be tough, really tough and the margins can be very thin.  Let’s face it if it were easy we would all be rocking Black Amex cards.

Anyway if you are messing with Facebook Ads and having trouble running a profitable campaign you may want to look at dropping your CPC or CPM to a point where a campaign would be profitable and just sit on it.   Your ads will sit idle but when the inventory gets thin Facebook may throw a couple impressions their way and if you hit a decent CTR ratio they will run for a while.

I had dozens of campaigns I just sort of left, every once in while they’ll startup and I’ll get a surge of traffic, it can be slim margins but I’ll take it.

One note, if you are running obscure campaigns (that may disappear) or have uncomfortably high budgets you will want to keep a close eye on things.

Below is a screen shot that illustrates a campaign that had stalled but got a second life last week.  I was running the campaign a long time ago (probably two years ago) with some success but the clicks dried up (due to low CTR).  The clicks started rolling in again last week.  I made a couple hundred dollars and now the clicks are drying again.  Not mind-blowing or life altering but it also didn’t involve any extra work.  I’ll take it. And so would you.

Facebook Ads Stats

Facebook Ads Stats

Love,

Lyndon

{ 3 comments }

Complacency, It’s a Bitch

by Lyndon on October 30, 2010

Cant Always Get What You Want

Cant Always Get What You Want

One of my favorite sayings is “complacency, it’s a bitch”. Complacency is something I constantly struggle with and I think it’s something that most struggle with.

Those that are extremely successful in business are not complacent. They constantly strive for more, they need more.

In my case – I want more but I struggle to keep myself motivated unless I need more. When my back is against the wall and I my income disappears, I work till the checks start rolling in (and they always seem to set new records) but once things stabilize I find it very easy to coast and just enjoy life.

For the first time in my life I feel motivated to launch more sites, build more businesses, and put myself in place to do what I want. I don’t know if it’s an age and maturity thing, the fact that I had a long break, or what it is –  but I know I like feeling this way. Let’s hope my drive doesn’t start to diminish tomorrow….

What do you do to ensure you keep your eyes on the prize?

{ 1 comment }

He’s Back

by Lyndon on October 25, 2010

Yo, I took a nice long (8 month break) from the Internet. It was awesome – I trained, rested, partied, frolicked in the sun at the beach, met great people, and spent time with my niece.

I’m back now.

Huge thanks to all the people (you know who you are) who reached out to me to make sure I was OK. I’ll come visit you all soon. Promise.

Love,

Lyndon

{ 6 comments }




A couple of days ago FaceBook made some big announcements at the 2010 F8 developer conference.   The Universal Like Button was the announcement that has everyone most excited.  So let’s take a look at how to add a like button to any web page.

How to Add a Like Button to a Web Page

First the good news – It is terrible easy.   Now the bad news – FaceBook does a bad job of explaining it.  Ready for more good news?  I am going to simply things for you!

There are two ways to add the Like button to your Website – with an i-frame or with JavaScript.   We will discuss the difference and also take a look at some of the available WordPress Plugins.

Adding the Like Button to a Webpage using a simple i-frame

The easiest way to generate the i-frame code is to use the tool provided by FaceBook.  The attributes used in the i-frame code are straight forward however it’s best to make use of the tool because it automatically URL Encodes (converts special characters) you’re Web page URL for you.

The code below which was generated by the Facebook tool could be placed on http://lyndonreid.com/contact (note the colon (:) and forward slashes (/) are URL Encoded).

<iframe src="http://www.facebook.com/plugins/like.php?href=http%3A%2F%2Flyndonreid.com%2Fcontact&amp;layout=standard&amp;show_faces=true&amp;width=450&amp;action=like&amp;colorscheme=light" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true" style="border:none; overflow:hidden; width:450px; height:px"></iframe>

Adding the Like Button using XFBML and JavaScript

In order to use the XFBML you will need to reference the FaceBook JavaScript Library. You can simply  copy and paste the code that follows into the footer of your web page (or anywhere inbetween the opening and closing <body> tags) .  The code will load the JavaScript library from FaceBook at the same time as the rest of your site loads (asynchronously) meaning it will not block or slow the loading of the rest of your website.

<div id="fb-root"></div>
<script>
window.fbAsyncInit = function() {
FB.init({appId: 'your app id', status: true, cookie: true,
xfbml: true});
};


(function() {
var e = document.createElement('script'); e.async = true;
e.src = document.location.protocol +
'//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js';
document.getElementById('fb-root').appendChild(e);
}());
</script>

Once you have the following code added to your webpage you can simply use the FaceBook tool to generate your XFBML or edit the code below and copy and paste it into your web page.

<fb:like href="http://lyndonreid.com/contact" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />

The benefit of using the XFBML is that users will have the option to comment when they “like” your page.  The i-frame version does not provide this functionality.

Adding the Like Button to a CMS

If you use the XFBML version of the code it’s quite simple.  You will load the JavaScript library on each page and then modify <fb:like /> tag to reference the current page.  Following are two examples, one that use PHP and one that uses VB.NET.

PHP

Note: this script assumes your site is running on http:// and not https://.
<fb:like href="<?php echo "http://" . $_SERVER['HTTP_HOST']  . $_SERVER['REQUEST_URI'];?>" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />
<fb:like href="http://lyndonreid.com/contact" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />

VB.NET

<fb:like href="<%=Request.UrlReferrer.ToString()%>" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />
<fb:like href="http://lyndonreid.com/contact" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />

Adding the Like Button to WordPress

There are two pluggins available already.  The plugin available at Kouguu.net allows for some customization via the control panel.

Smoking Gunn: http://blog.gunnjerkens.com/2010/04/facebook-like-plugin-for-wordpress/
Kouguu.net:  http://www.kouguu.net/?p=1

Adding the Like Button to a Thesis Themed WordPress Site

If you are familiar with the way hooks work within thesis then this will be really straight forward and you may not require this explanation.  If not, here you go J

Again, you can choose to do this with the XFBML of the i-frame version of the code.  I am going to show you how to do it the XBFML version as allowing you visitors to comments on posts they “like” is a nice touch.

We are going to add two hooks.  One for the actual button and one to load the required JavaScript.

You are going to edit you custom_functions.php file which can be found at:
\wordpress\wp-content\themes\thesis1.6\custom\custom_functions.php

Add the following lines to the top of the file:

add_action('thesis_hook_before_post','add_facebook_like_button');
add_action('thesis_hook_after_footer','add_XFBML_JavaScript');

Add the following to the bottom of the file:

//the following function will allow the facebook like button to display on every post
<div id="fb-root"></div>
function add_facebook_like_button() { ?>
<div style="width: 100%;">
<fb:like href=""<?php echo get_permalink($post->ID);?>" layout="standard" show_faces="true" width="450" action="like" colorscheme="light" />
</div>
<?php
}


//the following will load the FaceBookJ avascript Libraray
function add_XFBML_JavaScript() { ?>
<div id="fb-root"></div>
<script>
window.fbAsyncInit = function() {
FB.init({appId: 'your app id', status: true, cookie: true,
xfbml: true});
};
(function() {
var e = document.createElement('script'); e.async = true;
e.src = document.location.protocol +
'//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js';
document.getElementById('fb-root').appendChild(e);
}());
</script><?php
}

The FaceBook like button will now appear at the top of every post in your Thesis themed WordPress blog.

Summary

Adding the FaceBook Like Button to a Web page is very simple. If you have any issues adding the button to your Web site leave a comment below and I reply with in few hours.  If you found this article useful, please scroll to the top and click the like link and tweet it :)

{ 126 comments }

WebHost4Life Sucks

by Lyndon on April 19, 2010

A Customer Service Fail of EPIC Proportions

I’ve been hosting a number of small sites across a number of accounts for a number of years with WebHost4Life.  For the most part the service has been what you’d expect out of a low cost hosting company – not great but not that bad.

While things changed.  Holy crap what a piece of shit company.  They are in the process of migrating all servers to new technology and today one of my accounts was migrated.

I get an email letting me know it’s been completed. I go check out the site nervously.  Boom, Error, the connection string for the SQL Server Database is incorrect. I contact Live Chat Support they tell me they have forwarded my request to Technical Support and “Hang Up” on me.

So I hit the Live Chat Button again.  They tell me I will need to wait 24-48 hours.  Craptastic.  Here is the dialog:

Melanie Evans: Hi Lyndon. My name is Melanie, how are you today?

Lyndon Reid: Hi Melanie

Lyndon Reid: My sites were migrated today and are not working

Melanie Evans: I apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you.

Lyndon Reid: I need this fixed

Lyndon Reid: please

Lyndon Reid: :)

Lyndon Reid: Hello?

Melanie Evans: May I place you on hold while I look into this for you? I should have some more information regarding your issue in 4-5 minutes.

Melanie Evans: One of our agents already escalated your issue to our specialists.

Lyndon Reid: He hung up on me so i was unaware

Melanie Evans: Our engineers are working on it.

Lyndon Reid: How long until i can expect a reply

Melanie Evans: It will take 24 – 48 hours to resolve your ticket.

Melanie Evans: I will give the highest priority.

Lyndon Reid: That is really unfair

Lyndon Reid: My entire site is down

Lyndon Reid: Because of something you guys did

Lyndon Reid: and now i have to wait

Lyndon Reid: worse yet you are trying to upsell service packages

Melanie Evans: Yes.

Melanie Evans: I apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you.

Lyndon Reid: Your serious, I have to wait for up to 2 days?

Lyndon Reid: This will affect my google rankings negatively

Lyndon Reid: This means two days with NO EARNINGS

Melanie Evans: I can understand your concern.

Lyndon Reid: If your company understood my concern they would do something faster

Melanie Evans: I assure that it will be resolved soon.

Lyndon Reid: thank u

End of Conversation

The best part.  I go to open a ticket myself.  Check out the screen shot.  I can pay $30.00 a month for faster service.  This is new, since the migration.  So they destroy my site and then charge $360 a year for service.  What a freakin joke.  I wish upon them, with the white hot intensity of a thousand burning sounds, complete and total failure and bankruptcy.

WebHost4Life Sucks

WebHost4Life Sucks

If you are reading them and looking for a host a would recommend stabbing yourself in the left eye with a ballpoint pen before giving this self serving pricks your business.

Love you (no not you WebHost4Life, everyone else that reads my blog).

PS:  Isn’t great that I can put a blog post up faster than they can fix a minor issue?

{ 51 comments }