Feed The Trolls To Grow Your Website’s Traffic, Rank Better In SEO, And Make More Money!

by in Lifestyle on Apr 27th, 2015

The larger your website grows, the larger your website will likely continue to grow. It’s a virtuous cycle that makes blogging easier the longer you survive. You just need to get past that first two or three year wasteland, that most all of us go through where we wonder whether it’s all worth it or not.

If your website gets big enough, even 1% of your community who hates your guts will engender a lot of comments. For example, let’s say each article you publish garners 5,000 pageviews, 5% of your readers comment (250), and 1% of your commenters hate you. That’s 25 really nasty comments that when added together can probably combine for another full post! Read More

Are You Correctly Predicting The Future To Maximize Your Online Revenue?

Pick The Right Companies And Flourish

by in Lifestyle on Apr 16th, 2015

One of the big surprises to come out of blogging was not the realization that I could one day leave my full-time job in finance. That epiphany came when I received an advertising request on my iPhone while chilling at a bar on top of Santorini in the Fall of 2011.

The biggest surprise about blogging is its ability to be a dynamic resume to allow people to pivot into a new career!

One of the big reasons why I wanted to get out of the investment banking industry was because there was a loosening correlation between performance and reward. One would work harder, generate more revenue, and get paid less! That’s demoralizing. Ever since I left the banking world in 2012, there’s been report after report about how XYZ bank is downsizing its departments. I’ve also heard from old colleagues how their compensation continues to get squeezed.

Meanwhile, the consumption of online content continues to explode! Sites like Buzzfeed and Upworthy have come out of nowhere with mega valuations based on aggressive funding. Meanwhile, every week a new blogger is quitting his/her job to blog full-time. I’m bullish on blogging for the next 10 years, and I just wish I started Financial Samurai in 2003 when my father first suggested the idea instead of dilly dallying until 2009.

Financial Samurai now generates enough to put food on the table, without having to aggressively sell anything, work in an office, or report to anyone. It is a dream come true, and every day I thank my lucky stars.

What I’ve discovered is that to grow your revenue online, you’ve got to make educated guesses about the future. Read More

How To Write The Whale Post And Gain Lots Of Website Traffic

Creating Memorable, High Traffic Content

by in Lifestyle on Nov 17th, 2011

One of the reasons why public writing is so addicting is because there’s a chance somebody important out there might read what you’re writing and highlight it to somebody else important.  Your traffic starts to surge and your site might even crash due to server overload.  If this happens, congratulations!  You have found your Whale Post!

The Whale Post is elusive.  You think you’re writing interesting stuff, but most of the time nobody really cares, as reflected by the lack of comments.  You can have a site with thousands of subscribers with only 10 people motivated enough to leave some thoughts.  How demoralizing is that?  It’s only demoralizing if you think you’ve written something good.

Whale Post definition: A post which contains over 100 comments or 5X your average number of comments and accounts for at least 25% of your monthly traffic.  This is a new term that I’d like to introduce to the online writing community.

Here’s a case study of how the post, “How Much Do The Top Income Earners Make By Percentage” became a Whale Post on Financial Samurai.  If you search the term “top income earners“, you’ll see this post come up at the top of all major search engines.  Because of this, the post has received over 60,000 page views a month for the past couple of months.  Meanwhile, there are more than 700 hundred comments, hundreds of which could be stand alone 800-word articles themselves!

THE BASICS OF CREATING THE WHALE POST Read More

If You Want To Get Rich, Stop Messing Around!

Why Be The Worst When You Can Be The Best?

After three open houses and a couple hours of analysis, I thought I picked the top 5 rental candidates with the best financial records, but I was wrong.  All was fine until my fourth and last open house when a 28 year old single guy who graduated from CalTech came in and applied.  He is a software engineer at Google and makes $450,000 a year!  What the……

In addition to his eye-boggling income, he has $400,000 saved up after 6 years of working.  Perhaps some of that is 401K or Google stock, but whatever the case, I was blown away.  The 35 year old cardiologist who makes $300,000 has nothing on this Google guy, partly because the doc is in so much debt and also because he is so anal!  After 20 questions, you’ve got to give a person some breathing room buddy.

When I went to business school, a third of my classmates were engineers because they were the smartest people who were “stuck” making $150,000-$200,000 a year.  They saw their less smart colleagues in sales and marketing move up in the firm and make $300,000+ a year and were envious.  These guys all got 730+ on their GMATs out of 800 and 3.8+ GPAs out of 4.0.  It seemed obvious to me they had a chip on their shoulder and felt like they should be running the place.

The Googler’s applicant simply shattered my belief that engineers face a ceiling.  If you are 28 years old and making $450,000, you are absolutely crushing it.  Only in industries such as private equity, money management, and banking do 28 year olds with 6 years of experience make this kinda dough.  Even if you went to Yale Law School and joined super prestigious Wachtel Lipton, you start off at around a $200,000 base (vs. $160,000 base for the other top 20 corporate law firms) and a potential $100,000 bonus.

The war for talent is on!  So what about the rest of us?

PLEASE STOP MESSING AROUND Read More

You Might Be A Blogging Addict If ……

Confessions Of A Blogoholic

by in Lifestyle on Feb 4th, 2011

I love blogging.  I love blogging so much that sometimes I forget to eat dinner because I’m busy responding to comments, writing posts, and socializing online with friends. If I was a high school student again, I think my parents would worry about my health and offline social life. I can hear my father now, “Sam, how about going outside and meeting some nice girl or something?”

We have three main verticals on Yakezie.com: Personal Finance, Lifestyle, and Writing Contest.  What I’ve come to realize is that we might very well be missing one of the most important verticals… Blogging!  After all, the Yakezie Network is a network of bloggers who are all trying to figure out how to improve our respective sites.

Writing is a lot about self-reflection.  How do I feel about this situation?  Why do things happen the way they do?  Will I ever be able to get ahead?  I think about things constantly and if I didn’t put anything down in writing, I’d miss out on so many things because thoughts come and go in a flash.

One evening, I was reflecting on whether or not I have become a blogging addict.  Spending an extra 20-30 hours a week in front of the computer seems kind of excessive frankly.  I want to make sure that I won’t be checking into rehab soon and came up with a list to check my pulse.  Won’t you have a look and share your thoughts?

YOU MIGHT BE A BLOGGING ADDICT IF…. Read More

To Build Greater Wealth Never Sell Your Income Producing Assets

Hold On To Your Blog, Real Estate, And Dividend Funds For As Long As Possible

Do you know what happens when you sell an income producing asset? You end up spending so much time trying to recreate what you sold in vain. Thanks to inflation, declining interest rates, and a bull market, the asset you sold becomes tougher and tougher to replicate if you don’t buy another asset immediately.

Selling an income producing website is even tougher given it often takes at least a year or two to produce any meaningful type of income. Not only do you lose your voice online, you also lose the relatively passive income and a platform that could lead to many new opportunities.

Bottom line: try not to sell your income producing assets if you want to create greater wealth in your lifetime.  Read More

The Best Way To Make More Money Online: Become An Authority Affiliate

Become An Expert In What You Recommend By Going All-In

by in Lifestyle on Mar 16th, 2015

Making money online is one of the most audacious goals out there. To be untethered from an office and work from anywhere there is internet access is a dream come true. I never thought I’d ever make a sustainable income stream online until I was hiking in Santorini, Greece back in 2011. A client e-mailed me to advertise on FS while I was sipping an overpriced $10 beer at a bar. I put up the code in 30 minutes, and he sent me a $1,250 Paypal 15 minutes later. It was then that I knew maybe, just maybe I could make a living online!

Selling links is not a sustainable way to make money online anymore. We’ve seen Google wipe out a massive amount of sites due to link building practices that violate their terms of service. While I continue to believe every single site owner can do whatever they want with their own sites, if you want to gain search traffic from Google, then it’s best to play by their rules.

For the past three and a half years since I left my day job, I’ve experimented with affiliate advertising. At first, I was reluctant, because it felt weird pushing a product. So instead, I decided to thoroughly use each and every product for several months before really writing about them on my sites.

Affiliate advertising is the best form of advertising because if you find the right products, they naturally complement the content on your site. I strongly suggest writing articles first, without having an affiliate product in mind rather than write an article for the main purpose of making money. This way, your article is much more natural. Readers can tell if you’re just writing another product review post for money, or if you truly feel the product provides value to your community.

Despite being a user of all the products I highlight on my site and spending hours testing new features and functionality, I felt I could do more to build the trust of my readership. Thus, I’d now like to introduce you to the “authority affiliate” model.

Read More

How Important Is Social Media To Your Blog Or Business?

Maximize Your Use Of Time And Money Online

by in Personal Finance on Mar 2nd, 2015

As an online media consultant for several financial technology companies, I’ve been asked to think about existing traffic acquisition strategies and figure out better ways to utilize a company’s time and money to improve returns. I love analyzing data and finding solutions to increase ROI. As a problogger, leveraging my experience building Financial Samurai over the past six years to help other companies grow their brand and traffic online makes sense.

For the longest time, I’ve had a bias AGAINST social media. Who has time to tweet, like, flip, share, and do all that? Social media seriously feels like a huge time sink if you are just a one or two person show. The only platform I really use is Twitter, and even Twitter I feel is not a very good use of my time.

Look at what happens on social media:

* You open yourself up to social flaming wars

* You create stress by always feeling you have to respond to people

* The police come and arrest you once you tell everybody on Facebook you robbed a bank

* Given Facebook’s privacy settings are so confusing, Mark Zuckerberg’s sister didn’t realize the family photo she posted on her Wall was actually accessible to more people than she thought.

* You don’t get that much traffic back to your site, unless your site is really small, or all about social

There is social media overload, and I just don’t have time to run a Facebook page, Pinterest page, Twitter feed, Google+ page, and LinkedIn page to help those sites gain traffic. Instead, I’ve focused all my time just writing content on Financial Samurai and doing the basic social media publishing, but nothing more.

But some people are rockstars at social media and I wonder if it takes a certain type of personality to always be talking about yourself and your work online. I personally get sick of hearing myself speak, which is why I’m constantly looking for other viewpoints.

Let me share with you a spreadsheet I put together on various sites’ traffic figures, social percentage, and social percentage. Let’s see if we can glean any data together. Read More

How To Make Money Quitting Your Job
  • Natalie: I encourage positive dissenters. So long as it’s useful, constructive dissent, I welcome it. However,...
  • Brian@Luke1428: I’ve had a few negative comments but not to any great extent. I love your suggestions on how to...
  • Jason @ Phroogal: I’ve had a few haters comment but I have had some find me on Facebook and send me a message...
  • Financial Samurai: Just gotta bottle that hate up, drink it, and get supercharged! :) The delete button is a mighty...
  • Financial Samurai: Nice job Derek! The best way to deal with haters is to succeed. Trolls, haters, etc have provided...
  • Untemplater: So relatable! I loved this post. I remember getting so upset when I first started blogging when I got a...
  • Derek@LifeAndMyFinances: Great points, Sam. I had to learn this the hard way a few weeks ago when I had a bunch of...
  • RonniS: Can you please an example of your own product?
  • Asif: I like the way you started the post. I have been using it, since last few weeks to actually review the service,...
  • Untemplater: I completely agree it’s best to promote affiliate products and services that we use ourselves....

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