Why Content Marketing Can (and Should) Lead to an e-Commerce Business
I focused entirely on content websites for several years. I had a lot of fun with it, I made a lot of money through content marketing and then I decided to put my skills to good use by establishing an online business. In doing so I discovered that those skills were basically all I needed to make a success of things and thanks to the other contacts I had made in the industry, it didn’t take a lot of time or effort to be successful. If you are in the same position then this is why you need to more from content marketing to e-commerce:
SEO is Free
If your skills are SEO based, then you have an incredibly valuable tool at your disposal. I’ve worked with businesses who spend a lot of money on SEO and many years ago I even looked at hiring an SEO company myself. These days start-up online businesses will set aside at least 50% of their marketing budget for SEO. They are happy to spend thousands of dollars a day if it means they can get to the top of Google.
This adds up over time and it means that in the first year, even the smallest of businesses could be spending $10,000+ on SEO, with the bigger ones touching 6 figures. If your field is SEO, then you can do all of the work yourself. And the best thing about this is that SEO is expensive because it’s a valuable commodity, not necessarily because it takes a lot of time. Many SEO experts can turn a nothing-site into a success with a couple hundred dollars and 100 hours of their time. If you’re starting your own online business, this is the sort of work you can knock put in the first week, saving yourself thousands and then spending your time on other things.
Content/Design is Cheap
I was always a writer first and an SEO expert second, so writing was just as cheap and easy. But even if that wasn’t the case, my experience in SEO would still make this easier and cheaper. As an example, I work with an SEO expert who isn’t a writer and knows little about writing. He refuses to do it himself, yet he’s been involved in the industry for long enough to have people who will do it cheaply for him, people who will even do it in exchange for a few backlinks on his portfolio of sites.
It’s the same with designers as well. If your business is creating websites then there’s a good chance that you know how to do basic designs yourself and that you have some low-cost experts in your address book who will do the rest for you.
I calculated how much it would cost to pay a design team and a professional writing company to help me establish my business and the total came to over $35,000. An astonishing amount of money considering that I ended up doing it in exchange for a few favors, $500 and a lot of my own time spent hammering on the keyboard.
You Don’t Have to Worry About Google or Legal Issues
There are a lot of potential legal pitfalls with establishing your own business (see here for more information) and there are even more pitfalls with regards to Google penalties. This is one of the biggest fears of start-up companies because even when they are spending tens of thousands on expensive SEO companies they are still putting their company in the hands of someone else. They will never know for sure whether that company is being ethical and following white hat techniques, or if they’re just doing enough to earn their paycheck, only for a Google penalty to land a year later.
Plagiarism is also a problem because they are relying on writers they don’t know and don’t trust. But if you’ve been creating content sites for a while, you will have your own team who you can trust, a team who know that you won’t stand for plagiarism.
You Can Advertise Yourself for Free
A close friend of mine made a lot of money creating food and travel content sites, all of which used affiliate income. He created a lot of smaller review sites (see here for an example) and huge content websites. He continued to build and build until he was sending over 200 leads a week to 1 company and dozen to others. He was actually one of the main reasons that company was doing so well. At that point, he realized that it would be just as easy to setup his own food business and use those content sites to advertise it.
That way, rather than earning 10% on each sale, he would benefit from every penny. It worked, and that one business was able to triple his profits within 3 months. Not only that, but it was a huge success without needing to spend a penny on advertising, because he was getting it all free.
You can spend thousands of paying for banner placements on relevant sites in your niche, but if you own those sites, it’s free, and that’s the benefit of being a content marketer. Your own network of sites become your automatic go-to source for advertising. You have full control and you don’t have to worry about racking up huge bills. Not only will it earn more income for those content sites, but it will get you business off the ground quickly and ensure it earns big money.