The Best Business Books For 2019

There are thousands of books out there that cover a wide variety of topics on business. Some of the top books I have seen in recent years dive into topics like creating passive income online, building a business with no money, e-books on establishing a social presence, effective management skills, and the more general how to succeed in business.

While all of these topics are great topics to learn, do you really need a book to explore all that field has to offer? Not really.

I went on a search recently to discover the best business books for 2019.


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Are Instapreneurs Actually Killing It Financially?

You’ve all seen these characters on different social media platforms such as Instagram touting their shiny new toy, oversized mansion, or photos from a far away vacation destination.

When compared to them, you could easily feel like you’re not making it financially. However, I don’t believe that to be true.

I’m here to ask one simple question… Are these so called “Instapreneurs” actually killing it financially?


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3 Things I Wish I Would Have Known Before Building My Own Website

Many people are starting to build their own websites as a way of generating a passive side income. Many have actually been able to make this a full time income (myself included). Running a website has allowed thousands to escape their 9 to 5, write about their passions, travel the world, and share their experiences with readers like you.

I know this sounds like the ideal life. However, there are a few key things that I wish I had known before building my own website that I want to fill all of you folks in on before you dive head first into the online landscape.

There are thousands of people just like you and I that have managed to become extremely successful online. Many of those people are my colleagues and community members at Wealthy Affiliate. The issue is that most of us have had to start with little to no training. We have spent countless hours using trial and error and researching different techniques before we found the best one stop shop for Affiliate Marketing training on the internet.

With that being said… I want to share three major things I have learned in my 3 years as an affiliate marketer so that you can avoid making the mistakes that I did first starting out.


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How Hard Is It To Set Up A Shopify Store?

Oh Shopify, the magic E-Commerce platform that allows any average Joe like you or me to setup a store in a matter of minutes. Have you ever seen all of these gurus out there marketing their massively successful Shopify stores that seem to make them millionaires in a matter of months?

Me too.

Unfortunately for most, these kind of results are not a reality. Yes, I generate an income from Shopify. I am net positive in revenue across the few months I’ve been running a Shopify store, but it has not been a walk in the park for me at all.

While it may not be hard to set up a Shopify store it may be a bit harder to actually make sales. Whether you’re planning to source and sell your own products, or you have stumbled upon this article searching for information on drop shipping and e-commerce on a more general level, I am going to provide you with the exact steps needed to set up your very own Shopify store. Let’s begin…


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How Much Money Do I Need To Start A Business?

Have you ever asked yourself, “How much money do I need to start a business?” Well, let’s dive into that topic right now.

A lot of people out there believe that you must have substantial savings, take out a huge personal or business loan, or be gifted some large sum of money in order to create a successful business.

Let’s face it, most of us don’t start with the six figure income you need today to save a substantial amount of money. Maybe you don’t want to put yourself in outrageous debt. Maybe you just don’t have the qualifications to be given a “small loan of just one million dollars”. Maybe you don’t have a rich family or generational wealth that allows you to gamble all your money away on startup costs. Do any of these sound like you?

Yeah, it used to sound like me too.

So are there options for people like us in this world? Are we still able to chase our dreams, become entrepreneurs, retire early, and be our own boss?

You bet! It can be done, and we are going to talk about some options that you have and how much money you really need to start your own business.

Spoiler alert: It’s not near as much as you think.


Types of businesses:

Let’s first outline the types of businesses. We can start with the most expensive and as we move down the list we will talk about some of the less expensive options and why these might be the best options to pursue in this day and age.


Brick and Mortar Retail:

Brick and Mortar retail businesses may be the oldest small business idea out there. Many people believe that they can start up their own apparel brand, find their niche in some sports gear, hiking gear, or some other category and start up a store for people to come visit and shop.

retail shop

However, this type of business can be extremely expensive to launch. First you have to invest in a space. This can’t just be any space. You have to think about foot traffic, location popularity, mall space or freestanding business. Maybe you aren’t in the best city for retail. Better yet, maybe you live in an extremely expensive retail area.

Do you really want to uproot yourself and move to somewhere that leasing retail space is cheap? If you do don’t you think your sales might decline? After all, that retail space is expensive for a reason.

On top of what could be a minimum $2,000 monthly lease you have to source your own products. Although sourcing on Alibaba or online spaces can be pretty cheap, you usually need a high order minimum to source at wholesale rates. Your minimum investment could be as little as a few hundred dollars for only one type of product.

The issue is that you likely will want to source multiple types of products. Now you are suddenly at a few thousand dollars in product sourcing, racks, shelving, and displays.

Lastly, if you are not in the most prime location, you will need a significant amount of startup advertising. For a brick and mortar business you will still need to establish an online presence for this. You can do this via social media, your own website, or even utilize affiliate marketing.

In addition you will need banners and window advertisement. It would be a wise decision to advertise within other business and use radio or billboards.

If this doesn’t yet seem like it would cost a great deal to start up, let’s look at some other options and understand why they may be much cheaper and possible much better options.

Lastly, don’t forget about your actual time before you make your first sale. This means all of these costs are sunk start up costs that you may never make back if you don’t have all the right pieces of the puzzle in place just how they need to be.


Brick and Mortar Service Firm:

The primary difference between brick and mortar retail and a brick and mortar service firm is that your startup costs are not as dependent upon product sourcing as they are initial employee salary. Yes, employee salaries can be cushioned utilizing a commission structure but base salaries may still be necessary.

To start this type of business you also need a significant amount of education and expertise in a particular field to consult or provide a service in that field. For example, if you were to start an engineering firm from scratch you would need to have a degree in engineer, years of experience, and perhaps even a professional engineering license.

Engineers are also pretty expensive in terms of salary. Many are not willing to work for free or on commission for startups, so the sunk cost of employees may be significant as well.

Overall this may be a cheaper option than brick and mortar retail, but it still comes with its own logistical expenses that can be a little out of control when you aren’t well off to start.

There’s no sense in blowing your entire savings on a brick and mortar business in today’s day and age when you have some options in the online space. Just what are these options? Glad you asked!


Online Retail/E-Commerce

I’m going to include Amazon FBA, Retail Arbitrage, and Drop Shipping in these categories as well but they may be slightly lower cost than a self sourced e-commerce site.

First, let’s once again talk about startup costs for an online retail or e-commerce store. The initial costs can include a domain, hosting, potentially web design, and likely a seller platform membership (Amazon Seller Central runs $40 a month at the time of writing no matter your level or volume of sales).

These can all be expensive startup costs. With e-commerce it is not ideal to have a domain anything other than a .com or at least something unique. Domains are relatively cheap and easy to setup. Most run about $15 when you first purchase a domain and the renewal fees likely run about the same every year or two.

This is still much cheaper than a brick and mortar retail store because you don’t have to worry about location and leasing fees.

So why would you choose the online route over brick and mortar? That’s easy. A large majority of shopping is now done online. Big Box stores maintain their business because of long-standing brand reputation but even large stores like Walmart and Target and struggling to keep up with Amazon’s prowess online. Even huge corporations like Toys-R-Us have fallen victim to the increase in online sales and low prices online.

There simply is no marketplace anymore for small business. Not only that, with modern fulfillment services like Amazon FBA you can’t beat them when something purchased online will arrive at a customer’s doorstep in just two short days for no added cost. With Amazon PrimeNow it may even be sooner if you have a fulfillment center nearby. (San Francisco and Los Angeles are prime examples of this in California… no pun intended)

While online e-commerce can be much cheaper than its brick and mortar retail counterpart, you still need to invest in product sourcing which can be very expensive.

The best combatant to product sourcing is drop shipping. Drop shipping allows you to avoid sourcing items, and you essentially only pay for what you sell. Is this the best option? It very well could be if you are dead set on selling what you deem as your own product. Don’t forget about the hosting costs for many drop shipping sites though. There may still be a better option out there for most folks without any capital at all.

What type of business can you build with zero start up costs other than a little bit of time and effort? That’s also easy.


Niche Affiliate Website

An affiliate site may just be the cheapest way to start your own business today. In fact, this is my primary source of income and has potential to earn far greater amounts as popularity of my sites only grows.

The reason that building your own niche affiliate website is becoming such a popular option for modern day entrepreneurs is because you don’t need to lease any brick and mortar space. Also, there is no need for excessive hard advertisement, or product sourcing.

In fact, there is a large abundance of opportunity for affiliate marketers today. Finding products to market is getting easier and easier with all the different options that I’ve talked about in many of my previous articles. The commissions can range anywhere from 5-50%. There are even a few affiliate offers out there offering 75-80% commission.

This business model is most lucrative because of all the free educational resources on the internet. In fact, many people are part of online communities like Wealthy Affiliate that teach you everything you need to know about affiliate marketing. In addition, these communities are very helpful when you have questions that might not yet be answered on the internet. Many of these folks are extremely experienced in the online space.

Not only can you learn everything you need to know about how to setup this type of online business, you can actually grab free domains, free web hosting, and more. In fact, if you sign up for a free Wealthy Affiliate membership you can easily get all three of these things in one place. Read more about that here.

 


Conclusion and Final Startup Cost

So what really is the startup cost required to start your own business? If done correctly you can start with absolutely nothing. Sign Up for a free membership at Wealthy Affiliate, learn how to affiliate market, and get started today.

You can even start your own website in as little as thirty seconds as has been proven time and time again. Check out some of my other articles on how I’ve built my own successful business online. Learn how I’ve created a completely passive income online that supplements my day job and allows me to earn over 6 figures a year.

Who knows, maybe then you’ll want to start your own brick and mortar business with the profits you’ve earned online.

If you have any questions about starting your own business, brick and mortar, online, or affiliate business, drop a line in the comments and I’d be happy to share more resources with you.

What Is The Easiest Way To Build A Website? (Video Included)

Building a website can seem like such a daunting task. Most people don’t know HTML, Javascript, CSS, or any other coding language to design a nice user interface. Also, most people don’t generally have a hosting platform lined up to take care of the back end of their site.

I would know, I started the same way… with limited knowledge of websites overall. However, that’s no reason to NOT take advantage of all the great resources out there for building sites. It might seem hard right now, and I know you may be wondering… “what is the easiest way to build a website?”

Well, there’s always an easier way. That’s what I’m going to explain in this very article. So prepare yourself because by the end of this post you’ll be able to have your very own website.

  What’s the simplest platform to use?


Many people struggle with finding a convenient platform to host their site and edit the overall look and feel of the site all in one. Thankfully, there are platforms like that available. My favorite is Wealthy Affiliate.

Now, you don’t have to use Wealthy Affiliate. It’s just my personal preferred platform. There are other options out there like GoDaddy and WordPress alone.

Many bloggers and web builders have patched together their own web hosting platforms with some front end design that they do independently or contract out. The tough part about this method is that if you pay someone to work up a front end design for you you’ll then be attached to that designer or someone else will have to build out the code when you would like to add, remove, or edit the formatting of your site.

In addition, there have been countless reports of WordPress being tough to use when you are required to login independently. WordPress also lacks Site Support. When you have limited Site Support and install an update you risk the potential for a total loss of your site if you forget to back everything up prior to updating.

This is where Wealthy Affiliate becomes my preferred hosting platform. In addition to their amazing Affiliate Education Program they offer great web hosting and utilize a WordPress Express platform. However, Wealthy Affiliate’s version of WordPress comes with SSL capabilities allowing your site to be secured with an SSL certificate that helps your rank in Google. In addition, Wealthy Affiliate has unparalleled Site Support and SEO plugins.

wealthy affiliate site plugins

This ensures that your site will be supported and backed up within Wealthy Affiliate. If anything happens that you lose data, Site Support has a cached version of your site that they can restore. You may lose limited data but your whole site will not have to be reconstructed.

The SEO plugins help with Google, Yahoo, and Bing search engines allowing your content to rank. Also the built-in XML maps that come with WordPress allow Google to affectively crawl your site and find every post and page you’ve created thus far.

All of these additional features make it so easy to create a website without thinking about all the overwhelming details. Wealthy Affiliate and WordPress Express can also walk you through building the site step by step. This platform contains everything you need to know about building out a site and making sure it becomes a successful authority site. All you have to do is follow the basic training steps that they offer.

I know all of these things can still sound overwhelming. You may be wondering at this point how long it is going to take you to build a site with Wealthy Affiliate.

Imagine if it only took you 30 seconds to build it. Would you be interested? If so keep reading.

How long will it take to build a WordPress site on Wealthy Affiliate?


Wealthy Affiliate allows you to grab a domain, build a site, and start editing content all in one place. If you are thinking that this is going to take years to create a site, you’re wrong actually.

It’s super simple to create a site. Here’s a video showing you just how easy it is to create a WordPress site in just 30 seconds:

build a wordpress site in 30 seconds

Now that you’ve watched that video and you understand how easy it is to create a website from absolutely nothing, check out all the great things that Wealthy Affiliate has done for me.

If you don’t want to generate your own custom domains or pay for domains just yet remember that you can easily create a .siterubix domain for free. Give it a shot for yourself. Create a domain right now using this SiteRubix tool:

After you’ve created this domain, learn all about key words and ranking in Google by utilizing my favorite keyword tool Jaaxy below:

So that’s it! You should have your own website developed and ready to start populating with endless quantities of content that can easily lead you to making all sorts of money online. Whether it be through Affiliate Marketing, Retail Arbitrage, or whatever else you decide to do, you’ve now taken the first steps on your path to online success.

If you haven’t yet built a site, cruise over to WA, knock out the site and then come back and share it with me here. I’ll offer you free comments on your site and help you with new articles and ideas.

Good luck to you!

-Dalton

I Tried Retail Arbitrage On Amazon

Probably one of the hottest side hustles going around right now is retail arbitrage. You’re probably wondering if retail arbitrage can be successful and how to go about it if so. Well, I tried retail arbitrage on Amazon and here is the true story about what I discovered.


The Idea of Retail Arbitrage

Retail arbitrage is becoming a common side hustle due to huge slashing of prices at big box stores. Many popular stores have clearance racks or every day sale prices that are much lower than what an item sells for on Amazon or Ebay.

For the purpose of this article we will focus on Amazon, as that is generally regarded as the most profitable marketplace for retail arbitrage.

The idea is that you can go to a big box store, purchase an item on clearance or on sale for very cheap, and resell it online for a profit.

Yes, of course there are many items that are not profitable whatsoever. However, there are strategies you can use that many side hustlers have found to be helpful when determining what will sell and how much you will make.

In fact, Amazon allows you to put in projected purchase prices and estimates fees required to sell the item prior to you even purchasing said item.

Now that you understand the idea of retail arbitrage let’s talk about how to fire up this side hustle and whether or not you can truly make money doing it.


Researching The Process

Make sure to do plenty of research on retail arbitrage to come up with your own unique formula of ideas. When I first tried retail arbitrage I wanted to make sure I had as much information as possible going in so I didn’t lose any money after marking up my products.

I know that you already are in the research phase because that is probably what has led you here to this article.

I found multiple great sites that were extremely helpful when learning retail arbitrage. In addition, there are a few educational resources out there like this that teach you exactly what you need to look for when first tackling this endeavor.

However, if you don’t want to spend the time searching through hundreds of websites and learning exactly what each person did, you can just continue reading here and I will outline how to go about making this happen as best as possible.


Preparing my Amazon Store and FBA Account

The first thing you will want to do is prepare an Amazon Seller account. Many folks that have written about retail arbitrage are not up to date and have said that an Amazon Seller account is free. However, this has changed over the years and as third party sellers become more popular on Amazon (around 51% of total sales at the time of writing), Amazon has chosen to raise the price of even the base membership to $40 per month and there is no way around it.

Preparing this account is simple…

First, head over to Seller Central at Amazon and create an account.

You will then be asked for the membership option you prefer, your store name, and some additional information about how many items you expect to list, preliminary information on what types of items you might sell, and some miscellaneous tax reporting information so that you pay the government based on what you make.

Note: Keep receipts when you purchase items so that you can deduct the cost of your inventory items when it comes tax time.

After you get the store all setup and pay your $40 start up fee, you will need to verify your account with a form of State Issued ID.

This whole setup process only takes approximately 10 minutes or so regardless of how long winded I’ve made it sound.

Next, you’ll want to download the Amazon Seller app on your phone since we are about to go mobile. It’s easy enough to find in the AppStore, just search Amazon Seller and it should pop up as shown:

 

Now that you have your account setup and the app downloaded, we are ready to start sourcing items.


Sourcing My Items

You’ll want to make sure to pay close attention to this section as this is when stuff can get a bit confusing if you don’t know what you are looking at.

Make sure you don’t just run into the nearest Walmart and start grabbing every item you see on the Clearance rack as this process does not work like that.

Instead, make sure to do the proper research as outlined in this section. There are a few different stores that seem to be popular for retail arbitrage, for the sake of this article, however, I tested Walmart and Target.

If you are interested in trying this with different types of items not necessarily sold at Walmart or Target you can always try these big box stores:

  1. Costco
  2. Home Depot
  3. Lowe’s
  4. Sam’s Club

So now that you have a few ideas of stores to tackle, let’s talk about how to go about confirming an item is a good inventory item to sell on Amazon.

First, you will want to have a fully charged phone because the Amazon Seller app can be quite harsh on the battery. Once you get inside a store you want to be able to hit all the sales/clearance racks without having to leave and return at a later time because you never know that the items currently in the store will still be there.

Once you have located a clearance rack, you’ll want to pull out your phone and Amazon Seller app. At first I was concerned that Walmart employees were going to start staring or get paranoid of my antics, but they could care less what I was doing so don’t worry.

With the Amazon Seller app open you will want to click on the photo icon at the top right corner of the app. This will open up a photo pane and allow you to scan barcodes and products to identify them on Amazon and make comparisons regarding price, how many competitors exist, selling popularity, and fees.

First you will want to check popularity of an item as shown in the photo below. I’d suggest when starting out you will want to stick to selling items in the top 200,000 or so in their respective department. If an item is slow moving or ranked very low, you may never sell the item and your return on investment may come 2 years down the road after you’ve long forgotten about retail arbitrage.

Next, look into the price of the item. If you see that the selling price on Amazon is remotely close, or even lower than the clearance price of the item, ditch it immediately and ignore that item.

At first, I would suggest scanning everything on the rack, but as you get better at retail arbitrage you will start to ignore things that you know aren’t going to be profitable. This is a skill that is developed over time, not immediate, so make certain to follow the steps closely.

After you have looked at the price, and polarity, click on the item to confirm that it’s not restricted as shown below. If the item is restricted, you may not be able to sell it on Amazon therefore there is no reason to look at the item any longer.

 

Okay, so now you’ve found an item that is low enough priced on clearance, is relatively popular, and not restricted. Great! You may have found your first item.

Now click through the item and look at the multiple options for fulfillment of the item. You should see the screen showing Fulfilled by Seller and Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA).

When you fulfill a product by Amazon, this can qualify it for Prime two day shipping, Amazon will handle all the customer service and returns, and it really makes the entire process much easier. That’s why I chose the FBA route for my experience.

So continuing with the item you have selected, click through the item to the Fulfilled by Amazon tab.. now you should see a screen outlining the details of the Buy Box (the main sellers item box) and other competitive low prices.

You are then able to adjust the sale price to somewhere mid range. If you adjust to low you may end up driving the other prices down from other sellers which is the last thing you want since these wars can end very badly for everyone and lead to potential losses. I’d try and stay competitive or at the high end so you have room to lower the price later if necessary.

This tab also outlines the FBA fees associated with that item and shipping cost. I usually estimate about 50-75 cents per pound and generally just make a rough guess on the high end for the weight of the item.

After you determine all the fees, make sure to enter the clearance price that you will be purchasing the item for.

Now after all the fields are updated appropriately you will be able to see the estimated total profit. I usually try and aim for no less than the 3-5 dollar profit range so that, if need be, I can drop the price a little bit and still break even or make a buck or two.

So say the item comes out perfectly and you can make $8. Awesome, select that item, throw it in your cart and continue looking. Once you have done this with all your items (I spent about $300 my first time around for a trial period) head to checkout and then jet home for the next step.


Packing and Preparing For Shipment

This is where things get a bit more time consuming and frustrating and is actually the reason I am transitioning away from retail arbitrage completely and moving towards strictly affiliate marketing. However, we will discuss that later. Let’s talk about shipping.

When you fulfill by Amazon you will have to ship all your items to Amazon in what may be separate shipments. I suggest running by Home Depot and buying some 89 cent boxes to ship things in. Remember though, this cuts into your profit margin so unless you are able to find small, light weight items that can be packed and shipped together, you may want to avoid buying boxes, tape, and the like.

I managed to package all my stuff in Home Depot boxes, but here was the problem. When you ship to Amazon FBA they can designate the warehouse they want you to ship to. When I first tried retail arbitrage I didn’t realize this.

So here’s how it went… I purchased boxes from Home Depot based on the dimensions of packing all my items together (separated by item). Got everything home and then moved forward with the preparing for shipment portion of the process.

Once you have scanned your items in and hit “list”, you will then be able to prepare a shipment.

Amazon will not make your listing active until you have shipped all your items to their warehouses and they are checked in. Only at that point will your listings become live and able to be sold.

Now go to prepare a new shipment under the inventory page of Amazon’s Seller Central. You should see a screen that looks something like this:

You will need to type in the quantity of items you have, and Amazon will then ask you to ship the items in a particular manner.

After you are done with this step, hit work on this shipment. Here’s where this gets tough. Amazon will tell you specifically which items it wants in the box, and you must print the shipping labels accordingly. I would recommend not sealing anything up until you associate the correct items with their shipping labels.

What I realized here is that my Home Depot boxes would not actually fit the items properly without packing peanuts, bubble wrap, or other expensive packing items.

I then headed to the UPS store to pick up dimension specific boxes. When I got to UPS I asked for the boxes in the dimensions needed and to my surprise, it was going to be $27. I said fine because I had spent so much time running around town trying to get everything ready to ship and I had no shipping supplies to begin with. Like I said, I was performing this experiment from scratch.

I realized that this would cut into my prophet margin significantly but I just wanted to get all of this Walmart Clearance junk out of my house (Walmart is pretty gross sometimes, just a heads up).

I packaged everything up and completed the shipment. I attached the associated shipping labels and dropped everything off at the UPS store.

Once shipments are completed Amazon will allow you to track your inventory shipments.

Remember, I selected items based on the criteria that retail arbitragers everywhere have been successful with so they should have no problem selling.


Success So Far

I’m not going to say I’ve had no success and completely bash retail arbitrage. However, there are much more lucrative ways to make money without all the ridiculous effort required.

All of my items sold within a month and I made my money back, but I made sure to track all the hours I spent chasing down items, sourcing, preparing for shipment, and the cost I spent on actual shipping.

It turns out that I made about $6.00 per hour. This could be considered success because I was net positive at all. I don’t see it as a great success. Most Uber drivers claim to make more than this amount, and through affiliate marketing I make closer to $5000/month. There is a huge gap here and I personally don’t see anyone getting rich from retail arbitrage.


My Overall Experience

Retail arbitrage is not meant to make you rich. There simply aren’t enough items on the clearance racks to continually make consistent income. The amount of time it takes to really get through this process, even if you streamline it, is far too much.

What retail arbitrage did do for me is teach me how to use Amazon’s Seller Central. This is fantastic, because for just $340 I now had a full working knowledge of Seller Central and how to sell my own items on Amazon.

Nowadays there are so many resources out there discussing how to sell on Amazon, but you will never truly learn the process until you do it yourself. Since I plan to start my own line of clothing in the near future, understand Amazon is a great skill. However, for the time being, I will stick to the best affiliate platform out there and continue to rake in commissions when folks click on my links.

Also, I still think that becoming an affiliate of Amazon offers more upside and less background work in the long run.

Hopefully this article explained how to get started in retail arbitrage and fully outlined my experience with this side hustle. If you think it might be for you or have any questions, feel free to comment below. If you want to know more about my favorite affiliate site and how I generate a passive online income every month, click the banner.

Investing in Personal Education 2018

There may be no better opportunity for investment than investing in yourself in 2018. This doesn’t mean buying material goods for yourself to feel good, this means making a legitimate investment in yourself that will eventually better your overall life and ideally generate a significant amount of revenue for you in the future.


What is this investment you ask? Personal education.

You may be wondering what sort of personal education could offer this sort of return on investment or ROI.

No, it’s not another $40,000 college degree from an overrated institution.

It’s also not paying some “guru” to teach you  about his hot new Multi-Level Marketing Scam.

This type of personal education provides a foundation needed to found a successful online business that can actually provide real results and real income over time.

This is not a get rich quick scheme so if you are planning to make $500,000 overnight you aren’t planning to invest in yourself, you are looking for the next best gambling opportunity.

Many people that run websites just like this one, and write articles just like this one are making money every time you click on one of the links within the article. This is called Affiliate Marketing and is what drives the online economy.

Many websites would not be able to stay afloat and many people would not be willing to put in the time and effort needed to educate people online if they were not compensated to do so.

This may seem like a complicated thing to do.

You may not know anything about web development, authoring quality content, finding a niche, converting ads, making sales, finding leads and opportunities, or anything about online business and affiliate marketing.

That’s why I’ve written this article. I want to share with you the wonderful platform that allowed me to build this site, market online, and generate a passive revenue.

The Wealthy Affiliate platform is a personal education platform that I have reviewed in detail multiple times as my experience with the platform progresses.

When I first began with Wealthy Affiliate I had limited experience with HTML, I didn’t know how to develop a website, I didn’t understand how people made money when you clicked their links, and I also didn’t realize that almost everyone pushing any product online is actually making money doing so.

When I used to purchase items online and read countless reviews prior to doing so, I didn’t realize that the folks reviewing the products were actually making commissions up to 60% of the sales price of the item or digital content.

I don’t know about you, but I quickly realized that 60% of a $250 product sold one time is a decent amount of money. I also quickly realized that if I were to convert a sale for this product 5-10 times a day I could easily make over $1,000 a day.

However, I didn’t know how to become an affiliate marketer. Furthermore, I didn’t understand how to become a successful affiliate marketer.


So what did I do? I invested in my own personal education.

You might think that I invested some substantial amount of money or that my startup costs were out of control. That’s not true at all. I actually started for free to learn and understand the basics. You can do the same thing.

Through Wealthy Affiliate’s many different video courses, step by step Affiliate Bootcamp and Certification Courses, I have been able to successfully develop multiple online business generating consistent monthly revenue. Can you imagine making $100 extra dollars a month for a side hustle? What about $10,000?

Anything is possible if you follow this education course, do your due diligence, and commit your extra time in a week to really developing your online marketing skills. Wealthy Affiliate covers everything you need to know from buying a domain, to PPC advertisements and converting sales.

The best part about the entire self education program is that you can easily choose how quickly you want to move through the coursework. If you are a dedicated, motivated individual and you are willing to put in the work to educated yourself there is absolutely no reason you cannot be posting your own testimonials just like this one in under a year.


So how much do you need to invest in this personal education?

Absolutely nothing to start. You can learn all you need to found a website, register a free domain, and start writing content right now.

Once you get rolling, you can then branch into the premium area of Wealthy Affiliate where you will get additional access that allows you to learn and understand fully the affiliate side of things. Check out the membership options below:

Kyle and Carson, the founders of WA, are extremely helpful, constantly offering trainings and updates to their older trainings to stay consistent with the current affiliate market.

People within the community offer free advice as fast as you can ask for it.

The founders at WA have a proven track record and have managed to build their affiliate platform to over 800,000 users. Even if you don’t believe what I’ve outlined here, check out what they’ve done over at WA for yourself.


How long will it take to pay you back?

This is 100% dependent upon your level of dedication and work ethic. Many people can go 6 months to 1 year without really writing content and building an authority site. These are the people that will not generate revenue over that period of time.

Then there are people who will author quality, creative content over their first 6 months to 1 year and they will see results. Results may differ drastically, but if you follow the trainings and continue to educate yourself you will easily be able to earn a steady income from affiliate marketing. All from the comfort of your home on your laptop.

I invested in the yearly premium membership for $359 after just two months of paying $49. This saved me 39% over the course of the year.

My initial total investment was $457 and I have been paid back thirty times over in just over a year and a half ($13,710). You can easily make the same happen with the right amount of time and effort.


So you’re not convinced about the WA platform because maybe you don’t really understand what it is you will learn. Well let’s outline that:

What will you learn?

  • You’ll learn how to setup a domain and start a website
  • You’ll learn how to choose a niche market
  • You’ll learn how to find sources for affiliate marketing
  • You’ll learn what products sell, and what products don’t
  • You’ll learn how to market these products, and your website on social media
  • You’ll learn how to become an authority site on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and any other search engines that may exist
  • You’ll learn how PPC advertisement works, Google AdWords, Analytics
  • You’ll learn how to find high commission opportunities
  • You’ll learn how to market Wealthy Affiliate
  • You’ll learn what the most dominant affiliate marketers on the internet are doing to be successful

Just how much can affiliate marketers make?

Well, don’t just take it from me and the income I have generated thus far. Check out what some other affiliate marketers have been able to make happen with Wealthy Affiliate:

  1. ericcantu
  2. Joph
  3. dougbeney
  4. Hari S Nair
  5. And a more unconventional JoyNelson selling her own product.

If you’re still not convinced, I highly suggest signing up for free, giving it a shot, and learning more about the community on your own. If then you aren’t interested, come back here and let me know why. But I am confident you will love WA just as much as I do.

Have your own experience with Wealthy Affiliate? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below! Any additional questions? Feel free to leave those in the comments as well and I will personally respond.

One last note… you should never be required to pay for a product you market!

Investing in CryptoCurrency 2018

Many people are looking for alternative forms of investment in 2018. With the stock market at all time highs and with the idea that a recession may be on the horizon many people are scared of losing their hard earned 401k or private investment accounts.

The sentiment surrounding the current market is admirable. However, bubbles always burst.

Many have claimed that the CryptoCurrency boom is also a giant bubble waiting to pop.

Are these the people that have dedicated a considerable quantity of time to learning about CryptoCurrency and the technology behind it?

Do those that are discounting blockchain technology and CryptoCurrency fully understand that there are options other than Bitcoin to be invested in?

Did you know that many large corporations have adopted Bitcoin and alternative CryptoCurrencies, commonly referred to as AltCoins, as a valid payment method?

There are many reasons that CryptoCurrency is one of the best investment opportunities of 2018 and there is a reason that CryptoCurrency has changed my life for the better.

It can change yours too. Just hear me out.


Are you tired of the big banks stealing from you?

You may not realize that banks are stealing from you every day that you have money in an account. It can be checking, savings, even CD’s and Money Market accounts.

Let’s talk numbers. Inflation in the US last year was 2.7% due to all sorts of environmental factors including the printing of more money.

The average savings account earns approximately 0.001% on the overall balance month to month.

Even the best CD’s for the short term (3-6 months) will allow you to only earn around 1.2% on your money.

So let’s say you invest all of your money in the highest yield account you can at 1.2% for 6 months. You would see a return of about 2.4% over the course of the year if you kept your cash invested over all of 2018.

Since 2.4% is less than 2.7% you are losing 0.3% on your money every single year in simple terms.

Still not convinced the banks are stealing your money? Keep reading.

In 2008 when Congress approved the $700 billion bailout for the banks after they issued countless subprime home loans and suddenly realized that borrowers were unable to pay them back, the banks stole from you even more blatantly than they do every single day.

Why is it that your government decided to bail these banks out, but not absolve your mortgage debt?

If you had a home loan in 2008 and didn’t foreclose or short sale, you may still be paying on a mortgage and actually be upside down in your home.

When the banks got bailed out, did they bail out those folks who couldn’t pay their mortgages? No… unfortunately they did not.

Now, let’s take the population of the United States in 2008. That number, according to the government census was 304.1 million people.

About 63% of that population were between the ages of 18 and 65. So likely they were not under their parents roof/working, or they were retired and eligible to draw Social Security.

If you were to issue a check to every United States citizen included in that 63%… about 191.5 million people would have gotten a check for $3,653.00.

That may not seem like a lot, but nobody can seem to recall the banks paying it forward and returning to you any interest or helping you with any payment programs.

They took people’s houses that couldn’t afford to keep paying, which sounds a lot like stealing to me.

So what if I told you that you no longer needed to deal with the Federal Reserve?

What if I told you that there was a finite limit of the amount of currency you could “print”?

What if Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, US Bank, and all the others no longer had control over your life?

Would you be interested in giving that a shot?

If so, keep reading. If not, that’s understandable. Many prefer to stick to what they know and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.


What is Bitcoin?

The Bitcoin blockchain was first created in 2009 by an unknown inventor who went under the alias of Satoshi Nakamoto. The true inventor has yet to come forward, or at least those who follow Bitcoin are unsure whether or not to believe if the real Satoshi has exposed their self.

There is a total of 21 million Bitcoin to be mined and the estimated date that all Bitcoin will be mined is due in the year 2140. It is impossible to predict the exact date and time due to the ever changing mining environment.

Essentially, Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that allows peer-to-peer or over the network transactions without the support of a middle-man or centralized bank. This is where the term decentralization is derived.

You may have seen Bitcoin denoted as $BTC many times on the internet or social media sites.

Modern encryption technology allows those using Bitcoin to perform transactions anonymously. There must be a network in place of “miners” that generate the tokens based on proof of work and approve transactions.

Without this network a transaction cannot be confirmed or completed. In addition, if this network does not recognize the transaction as a true or real transaction, it rejects the transfer completely preventing any sort of fraudulent activity.

Now that you get the idea behind Bitcoin, let’s talk about the technology behind it.

This is by far the most important part, because even if you don’t trust the idea of Bitcoin, you may trust the idea of blockchain technology.


What is Blockchain Technology?

For simplicity, imagine you are keeping the books at a company. Any company.

Okay, now every time a transaction is made, you write it down with a very unique identifier or confirmation number. This book is continually populated and there is never a missed transaction.

Now imagine that the book is now controlled by a large number of individuals all writing continuously tracking every transaction. No central book exists, so someone from engineering cannot come in and alter this book without making it different from the other books.

Think about the fact that in order for a transaction to occur, it has to be validated across all of these books and confirmed. If someone were to alter one particular book, and now all the books did not match, the transaction being placed on the altered book would be deemed as fraudulent or untrue.

This seems a bit complicated, but really it is quite simple. If every computer that is supporting the blockchain network does not agree that this is the true chain, then the transaction will not be completed.

The benefit of blockchain is that there cannot be any single lapse in the chain. It would have to fail across the entire network.

Since this is a decentralized network and anonymously controlled by millions of processing units around the world, no one hacker can access the entire network and break the real blockchain.

If this sounds unbelievable, then why is it that almost 30 years after blockchain technology was created, has it yet to have been broken?

There is no more error, no more government printing more or extending a chain. Once the blockchain is set, it is run until it’s complete.

After that, the network supporting the blockchain exists simply to confirm transactions. Hopefully you now understand blockchain. So let’s move on beyond Bitcoin and the basics of blockchain technology and talk about it’s other applications.


Are there CryptoCurrencies other than those that CNBC and Yahoo Finance shove down everyone’s throats?

If you have any sort of financial knowledge you have probably seen articles from CNBC, Yahoo Finance, and other entities discussing what I am discussing here… CryptoCurrency.

Maybe you watch Bloomberg on the television and it has been a hot topic there as well. Do you think that these so-called industry experts and analysts really understand what it is they are talking about?

If you didn’t know already, there are other CryptoCurrencies aside from Bitcoin.

Here are just a few of the top market cap coins to date:

The folks on Wall St. and those pumping stocks on TV have figured this out.

Now they have their skin in the game and want to make their own money.

What do they do?

They promote a particular currency and discuss its purpose hoping to convince you to buy this currency, increase its value, and then they will sell making a huge profit.

Take for example Ripple, or $XRP. This is a relatively centralized bank based coin that CNBC has been on a hot streak of promoting lately. The value rose considerably as shown in the chart below once it became a “mainstream” coin.

However, what many don’t know is that there are far more coins out there than what the mainstream media is promoting. These AltCoins actually have much better technology behind them and the white papers are publicly available for review.

The point here is that just because a so-called expert pretends to know CryptoCurrency, they may not understand that the purpose behind CryptoCurrency and blockchain technology is not so that we can remain centralized within the banks using Ripple.

The purpose is all the wonderful day-to-day applications that different CryptoCurrencies support.

Currently, you can use CryptoCurrency debit cards to purchase items just like you would with a regular debit card anywhere that accepts Visa, MasterCard, etc.

Support for CryptoCurrency is only increasing with the ability to book hotels on Expedia, purchase goods on Overstock, buy Xbox Games, perform Real Estate sales or transactions, and even buy a McLaren from my good friends at McLaren Newport Beach.

I am Koenigsegg fan myself but I digress.

What coins should you invest in? Personally, I am invested across the board in the best technologies I can find. I have read countless white papers and have a few favorites in almost every category.

Some think they may have missed the CryptoCurrency boom, but that’s not true.

The current market cap of all coins is approximately $502.20 billion whereas the total current market cap of the stock market is $18.5 Trillion. If even 10% of that wealth shifts to CryptoCurrency you will see unfathomable gains.

I suggest you start your own research, read some white papers, and purchase some AltCoins based on what you feel is right. If you’re wondering where to do so? I have the answer for you.


Where can I purchase these AltCoins?

You have probably heard of the main Crypto platforms and exchanges like CoinBase or the background exchange owned by CoinBase called GDAX (sign in with your CoinBase account).

These platforms automatically generate you a wallet to store your cryptocurrency in and this will allow you to transfer currency to or from that platform.

For fiat ($USD, etc) purchases of Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Litecoin this would be an okay place to start investing.

If you are looking to invest in AltCoins which is a much more lucrative investment for 2018 profit then I would recommend the exchange Binance. Binance has access to countless coins and these currencies have much smaller market caps or values.

Many of these coins have seen gains in the upwards of 1,000-2,000% in under a year. I’m not saying that you should go into investing all of your fiat currency into a coin called $DOGE or $DRGN… but there are many coins such as $ICX that would be a great place to start.

If you are interesting in investing in AltCoins sign up for Binance today by clicking here.

Binance is an asian run website, but it has always been secure for me and can be trusted. I have enabled multiple authentication methods that serve as added security for the site and prevent hackers from stealing funds.

Remember to follow the security protocol of every exchange and PROTECT YOUR ASSETS.


How CryptoCurrency changed my life and why CryptoCurrency is a top investment of 2018…

If you still need convincing that CryptoCurrency will be one of the top investments in 2018 then here’s where I tell my personal experience with CryptoCurrency.

I bought Bitcoin in 2016 when a friend explained to me Blockchain technology.

I wasn’t interested in the “digital gold”, I was interested in the technology behind it and what it could do for the global marketplace.

The idea that I can send currency to my friends in Germany, Russia, Spain, the UK, or anywhere else on the planet was exciting. Whether it be for a birthday present, some awesome imported German Beer, or just to pay them for helping me out with a homework problem this seemed like a great idea.

When I first started reading white papers on AltCoins (papers outlining the technologies behind the currency and the intended purpose) I realized that Bitcoin transaction fees and the speed of the transactions could be enhanced.

I immediately starting diversifying my investments into coins like $RDD, $XRP, $STRAT, etc.

This is when CryptoCurrency changed my life. Within three months I had doubled my initial investment. I then dedicated my next two paychecks to CryptoCurrency as the technology began to catch steam.

Not only was I gaining in quantity of $BTC (Bitcoin) because of the increase in value of my investments, I was making $USD like mad.

I stopped caring about $USD almost completely and made it my mission to gain as much $BTC as possible.

To date I have made 5,000% on my initial portfolio investment and I own 14 different types of CryptoCurrency assets. Many people have haggled me to cash out for fiat, but I believe in the future and I believe in Crypto.

Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not an idiot. I paid off my student loans, I paid off my home, and I paid off all my consumer credit debt and my vehicle. Now, I’m waiting for the day that CryptoCurrency is the only currency.

Humor me, think about how often you use cash for a second.

If you find yourself using a card for every day to day transaction, you are already using digital currency. However, the technology is weak, outdated, and easy to hack.

If you don’t believe that this will be the norm one day. That’s perfectly fine. If you don’t believe the current value of $BTC is what it should be, that’s also fine.

If you want to know more or talk further about CryptoCurrency in general. Drop me a comment below and I’d be happy to talk it over and respond personally to your questions and comments.

Share with your friends on Social Media and leave a comment below with your new $RDD wallet address and I will send you 1 $RDD as a thank you.


Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for information purposes only.  It is not intended to be investment advice.  Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.

Investing in ETFs 2018

Exchange Traded Funds:

The second most important investment of 2018 behind Real Estate, Exchange Traded Funds can provide great upside and potential growth for your money.

Many people aren’t even sure what exchange traded funds (ETFs) are in the first place. Well allow me to put it in the simplest form that I can think up:

ETFs are essentially funds, much like stocks, that can be traded on the major exchanges. This includes the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

There are other exchanges such as the OTCBB for smaller companies that have issued initial public offerings (IPOs) of shares but we will stay away from those for now as they are generally deemed Penny Stocks and not meant for year long investment.

An ETF holds different assets. These assets can be in the form of commodities like gold or silver, or maybe a variety of stocks and bonds, or both.

ETFs allow you the ability to invest in many different types of assets at once and generally track the market based on the value of the assets that they hold.

So you  may be asking why ETFs would make the list of the best investments of 2018. Well, that’s easy.

ETFs increase and decrease in value when the overall market indices do the same. When we are in a bull market, or a market that is generally rising in simpler terms, it is easy to generate passive revenue from ETFs.

If the overall market, or more specifically the market surrounding an ETFs holdings is increasing, then your investment also increases accordingly.


So why wouldn’t you just invest in individual stocks and hope for the big gains?

ETFs are easier than picking individual stocks because they automatically diversify your portfolio and allow you to start investing for less up front cost.

When you pick individual stocks you may have to invest $150 a share or more.

For example, take Tesla…a company growing in popularity over recent years that swings pretty heavily in stock price and has seen solid gains overall.

If you were to invest in Tesla at the time this article was written you would have to come up with around $340/share.

This is a lot of money when you first begin to allocate portions of your wealth to the market. In addition, you are limited to purchasing whole shares of Tesla’s stock which means if you have less than $680 you are unable to buy 2 shares of Tesla stock.

ETFs allow discounted prices for investors, but still allow you to hold some sort of stake in popular stocks.

Say an ETF has holdings in Tesla and Tesla does well overall. You see gains in your portfolio proportionate to the exposure that ETF has to that particular stock.

Quite often, you can purchase stake in an ETF for a much less up front investment than buying particular stocks directly.

Many ETFs trade below $100 so you can accumulate a much larger quantity of holdings in that ETF. In addition, the money you make on your investment can grow at a more rapid rate than it would if you were only able to buy a singular share of individual stock.

This is especially the case if that stock underperforms its associated sector and the ETF you have invested in tracks the overall sector.

Most people believe that they can beat the overall market through day trading, but generally speaking, that is not true. Up to 93% of those who call themselves “day-traders” fail to exceed the gains of the S&P 500 year over year.

Simply put, if you were to invest in just the S&P 500 you would have seen around a 10% gain year over year over the past 2o years. Financial advisors, traders, and investment bankers actually only see up to around 5-6% gains per year on average.

Get started investing in ETFs and generating returns on your investments today. Sign up for RobinHood today and invest with zero trading fees!

If you still have questions about ETFs ask them in the comments below and I will do my best to answer!


Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for information purposes only.  It is not intended to be investment advice.  Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.