How to Start Dropshipping in 1 Week – All the tools for Automated Dropshipping Success

How to Start Dropshipping in 1 Week – All the tools for Automated Dropshipping Success

What to Expect

I take it you’ve been searching the internet for a while now, and just like me, on that search for ways to make money online. When I discovered dropshipping I knew I was onto something big.

From my experience I can tell you that you are entitled to a retail store which requires only a small amount of your attention each day to copy and paste shipment details and be making more than if you worked a full-time job. Sound good? It is! I’m not going to give you definite figures because being a successful dropshipper depends on 3 things:

-How many listings you establish
-How well you design your product listing
-How much market research you are willing to do .

Put simply, dropshipping is a process whereby a manufacturer or supplier delivers products directly to the customers at your online shop.

This way you don’t need to stock, repurchase and restock, all you need to do is click and tap a few times.

Are you excited yet? you should be, let me tell you, dropshipping is an online goldmine.

When I first discovered it, it sounded like such perfect plan couldn’t believe I hadn’t heard of it before.

You are the middle man/woman, and opportunities for being the middle man/woman are all over the internet. And this same process can be applied to wherever a transaction can be made.

All the customer requires is accurate and enticing content with their product in order to make a purchase. But you don’t even have to create the content, the supplier will be the one who does this for you, all you have to do is upload it, and devote a little work sending over the address each day/night from your laptop.

I will be taking you through the two most popular and profitable places to begin dropshipping, which is eBay and/or an ecommerce website (I chose both, so can you!). We will look at all of the advantages and disadvantages and compare each business model so that you can decide for yourself which one to choose.

Where to Station Your Shop

Starting with eMarketplace: eBay
An eBay listing is like having a place on the high street to promote your products and make a profit. After your first listing you will be impressed with the amount of views any type of product with the right title and images can rack up.

eBay offers many features for its sellers that shouldn’t be taken for granted, such as templates and shop manager which can make your shop appear reputable and trustworthy.

You can also upload listings in bulk using Turbolister, click here to learn the quickest bulk eBay upload method.

Warning: You will not make money if you start out with only a few items, you have to open a shop and upload as many as you can within your first month. As when I started out I wasn’t aware of eBay’s monthly fees for their shop owner accounts.

I also wasn’t aware of eBay’s FileExchange bulk upload service, and started my first month with 40 items and was charged £110, and I only made a mere £30 or so. So you will want to max out your listings to the amount you are allowed with your shop subscription.

*Paypal Freezing your account –

If you haven’t used your account in a while or you’re a new user, Paypal may withhold large payments to you. Not to worry though, you can just use a credit card to pay for the dropshipping item and request a tracking code from the wholesaler. You then supply this to Paypal and receive your payment shortly.

 

Starting with eMarketplace: eBay 

Pros:

– Customer is looking for specific item – higher chance of being seen

– Has a rating system for trusted seller recognition

– You don’t have to cater to a single niche, and can opt to have a generic store name that sells allsorts.

– You don’t have to design a logo

– Free to list an item

Cons:

– A mistake can result in a bad rating

– Don’t have Google search listings

– Competitors selling the same item undercutting your price

-You need to upload as fast and as many as you can so you can make a profit over eBay’s shop account fees.

 

Starting with an eCommerce Store

Ecommerce stores have the advantage not being in a market format surrounded by other competing listings. This means your store is in the spotlight, and you can brand yourself merry, as we know people love a label.

The ecommerce store is a very flexible option as you can be fully in charge of your own image. Unlike eBay, the customer isn’t necessarily after a bargain, and will feel more like they can rely on the product you’re supplying.

The downside is that you will have to buy hosting, which can be a dawdle, but in this ebook I’ve included a brief summary of the types of hosting to choose from to make it easier.

 

Without Hosting: Shopify 

With Shopify, we don’t have to deal with the hassle of setting up hosting, a domain, a website and ecommerce store plug in. Shopify gives you the option to get everything done in one place.

My experience with Shopify was a good one, they offered a ‘60 second setup’, whilst I can’t say how long it took, I do remember it being flamboyantly swift. They have a very neat and minimalistic layout, you simply pop your logo at the top and you’re off to the races. It really is the hassle-free method with everything included such as integrated analytics like purchases and customer ID tracking.

Click my link here to receive a 14 day free trial with Shopify!

A bonus is that after setting up your shop, you can become a Shopify affiliate like me and give people 14 day free trials as well as earning a 200% commission per sale!

 

Without Hosting: Shopify

Pros:

– No Competition

– you choose your price

– Branding

– Enhances Value

-Personalised Customer Service

– Email Marketing

Cons:

-Paying Monthly for Shopify

-Finding or designing a logo

-Cost of advertising

-Less exposure

Setting Up Your Shop With WordPresshow-to-build-a-wordpress-blog-

The next steps are to set up a WordPress blog on the hosting control panel under your domain name, choose a theme and install woocommerce.

WordPress is very easy to set up, they have a famous 5 minute install that gets you started very quickly, depending on how fast you enter your info..

Make sure you have these free plugins installed:
– Jetpack- to feature your social media pages in the footer
– Askimet- for spam
– Insite- for a variety of nifty add-ons like pop up subscribes

Woocommerce is the most widely used ecommerce plugin and allows for a variety of customizations. Once installed the majority is set up for you, all you really need to do is add a logo and customize the homepage to your liking.

You will need a theme, which is basically the instructions you set for the layout of the site. There are many themes to choose from within WordPress, or you can look elsewhere.

For a theme and other plugins, I use Elegant Themes. From a starting price of $69 a year they provide you access to a ton of great themes and nifty plugins.

If you don’t want to learn code, like me, you can also choose to use the Divi builder from Elegant Theme’s list of plugins. The Divi builder is a drag and drop page and post builder, it is very easy to use and there is fairly decent support.

 

With Hosting:

Pros:

– No competition

– you choose your price

– The branding enhances value

– Personalised customer service

-Email Marketing

 

Cons:

-Paying for hosting

-Finding or designing a logo

-Cost of advertising

-Less exposure

 

Ecommerce store or eBay? Lets compare..

Ecommerce and eBay are both profitable models, I would say eBay is great for starting out as you don’t have to invest as much money in advertising, however eBay requires keeping a good standing in the listings, which means a lot more time is spent researching what keeps buyers buying. An advertising method for your ecommerce stores to help make up for advertising expenditure would be to only advertise sales or items available for a limited time only.

Also feedback is very important and one mistake can end up in negative feedback, however eBay can remove negative feedback if it is about the product sourcing, so there is no need to worry about that. You can pick both if you want, which is what I did, but if you’re just starting out it is better to focus on one for now and get all the listings uploaded so you’re good to go, then head back here, get your tips and create the other.

 

Choosing Your Niche

Here are some niches to choose from, these are the more generic options which would be perfect for eBay.

• Sports • Office • Tech and Gadgets • Pet Supplies • Kitchen • Health & Fitness • Medical & Elderly Care • Maternity & Parenthood • Hobbies & Recreation • Patio & Garden • Miscellaneous

For an ecommerce store the niche would need to be more specific, such as for sports, choose a sport like surfing, for office, printers or gadgets and so on, this will give the impression your website is a specialist website and the customer is more likely to pay future visits.

 

Niche Targeting With eCommerce

For our eCommerce site, is better to go for a specific niche, as we want it to rank higher in the Google search listings, and the more specific it is, the less competition you will have in Google. For extra help with how to rank higher in Google we look to how the SEO works, which is through a choice of keywords. You must pay particular attention to the wording and sentence structure in the key words as that way we can cash in on the specificity in the listings- I repeat- the less competition the higher the success rate.

You can also do what many bloggers do, which is type the keyword as much as you possible can, this is easy if you’re the chatty type, but it can come off as an overwhelming amount of filler.

This is why it is useful to have a combination of a blog and a store, with a blog you can backlink your site, and the more your site has been mentioned on other websites of authority, the more relevant you are to the search term on Google and the higher you will get in Google’s search listings.

 

Choosing Your Supplier

Wholesale Directories:

The two most widely used Wholesale Directories are Worldwide Brands and Salehoo.

Both are have millions of products to choose from, and are fairly easy to use but do require a fee.

In the following section I will give you an overview of what you’ll be getting with each directory and compare them to see which is right for you.

 

Worldwide BrandsWorldWide-Brands-Review-Image

Worldwide Brands is eBay acknowledged and operated by Chris Malta, the Product Sourcing Editor of eBay Radio. They have a research team that keeps their directory up to date with the latest products and suppliers. They were established as a business way back in 1999 and on their website it says they have over a million products. They have recently (2016) given their website a makeover, which is now a lot more appealing to the eye.

Cost: $269 Lifetime Fee

 

Salehoosalehoo-review

For those starting out on eBay with a small amount of funds to invest into their dropshipping project, SaleHoo’s membership offers the most value for money at $67 a year which isn’t a big investment for those just testing the waters of dropshipping.

Founded in 2005, Salehoo is now used by thousands of eBay power sellers and features over 1.6 million products from nearly 8,000 suppliers. It hosts suppliers from the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, and China.

They provide great customer support- I asked them about a single product and they quickly found me a list of all the companies who sell it.

Its website is very sleek and easy to use, more so than Worldwide Brands. Salehoo also has with it a number of eBay power sellers to advise you along the way.

There are many people on the internet who claim it’s the best dropshipping directory out there, but see for yourself.

Cost: $67 Annual Fee

 

Customer Value

eBay:
As you may already be aware try to keep on top of the postage, this 1 hour job (depending on how much you’re selling) can be done in spare time. It is important to leave yourself time to process orders, I use 1-3 business days for dispatching. To keep a high rating on eBay you will need to keep on top of orders, and to minimise the likelihood of leaving a customer’s transaction until after their guaranteed postage date.

Ecommerce:
If you’re using an e-commerce store there is a lot of potential in having a customer sign up to an email subscription. However this may seem overly pushy, so another option is to have a customer provide their email at checkout, with a small box checked for them, informing them of a weekly email updating them on your latest products, most popular products, discounts and offers.

Advertising

I’m going to tell you my main method for successful advertising, which is by using social media.Social media is an open door to enormous amounts of traffic and by using it you can expect to see results quickly.

 

Advertising – Facebook

I recommend using Facebook advertising as it gives your store credibility, this is because the sponsored Facebook post puts your promotion in the same ranks as many well-known and trusted companies. As Facebook owns Instagram, the advertising tool will also advertise to 1.5x the amount of people on Instagram for free. It is very easy to set up, but you’ll have to make both a Facebook page and Instagram account for your shop.

 

Advertising – OctosuiteOctosuite-review

Octosuite is a bulk-post scheduling application which was recently released by Luke Maguire in 2016. It is the first Facebook tool that enables you to join and post in multiple groups at once.

Here are some of the best things the app does:

– Finds the most viral content on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Reddit.

– Posts the viral content on your page, (not shared from another page- appears as an original post by you but credits iphoto)

– Bulk Schedule posts on social media pages, months in advance. So 2-4 weeks of activity can be completed in 30 mins

– It avoids spam filters by adding delays between bulk posts.

With Octosuite you can request to join and post in up to 80 groups a day.

Click Here for the basic Ocean Edition which gives you the all the basic features.

It also has a useful addon for Twitter, Pinterest and Linkedin syndication – Click Here

And an impressive affiliate link cloaker add on – Click Here

 

Advertising – Pinterest

Pinterest is a great tool as we can request to be added to any group board (serving our niche), this means you do not have to get a huge audience to get seen. With group boards we have access to thousands, or tens of thousands of people who are already interested in your niche.

To get access to boards, you can start from a group board directory like Pin Groupie. First we have to ask the moderator by tagging their name in a comment section of a pin, or read the instructions in the group board, they sometimes request an email. Then once they approve we have access to all these people!

 

Advertising – Pinterest with Shopify

Shopify has recently worked with Pinterest to give viewers of pins the option to buy a product as well as pin it.

This has enormous potential as often people will pin a product they like in their boards without going to the link. If they are shown the option to buy this item, they will be more inclined to do so.

So using Shopify we can unlock better targeting for our Pinterest audience.

Food for thought:
100 million food related boards and 146 million fashion boards exist on Pinterest.

So you can tempt buyers with a ‘Buy It’ button on the pin that will show up on the image in the corner adjacent to ‘Pin it’. Click the link here to see how Shopify does this.

Now if you don’t have time for scrolling through Pinterest and building boards every day, to get started pinning, I advise hastily but tactfully making a few boards in private and then revealing them to the public.

If you want to use Octosuite’s Pinterest add on to keep everything in one place, you can, but there are applications more tailored to the use in Pinterest, e.g. Tailwind.

Tailwind’s service is free for the first 30 days. If you want completely hands-off pinning, and want to build up your followers, I suggest an automated pinning service like Autopin, which will build up a few boards and follows for you. Though it is important to check over the boards every once in a while because the bot has a tendency to pin totally unrelated content.

Pinterest also has a promotion service which you can use to get seen more.

 

Advertising – BloggingBlogging-connection

Blogging for your business will attract more visitors through SEO and give substance to your brand. Despite working hard to build the business, it will not be as much of a success if you miss out on this opportunity.

Contacting a Blog
An agreement with a blogger could include you offering them a number from 3-10% of each product you sell that they advertise on their blog. If you wanted them to recommend your shop as a whole, you could pass on a discount code for their readers, which they may be willing to do for free as it also gives their blog exposure. If they are not willing to do it for free, think of a reasonable sum to offer, or a smaller percentage say 2-5% of weekly/bi weekly earnings.

 

Summary

There you have it, a concise guide to getting set up within a week with a definite recipe for success with dropshipping. All of my research packed into one place for you.

I hope this dropship guide has helped you, please share it with your friends and family to spread the good word. 

 

Why You Aren’t Earning Money from your Blog – How to Add Value P1

Why You Aren’t Earning Money from your Blog – How to Add Value P1

Offering your own product vs Google Adsense

Josh Elizetxe from TomiAcademy.com reveals that his sites own product makes a lot more than when his website only had Google Adsense:josh-elizetxe

 

Creating and selling your own product on your blog isn’t as hard as you may think, all it requires is….

 

‘Specialist’ knowledge about your niche.

 

And if you have a blog with a niche, then you already have that don’t you? If you don’t have a blog, all you have to do is make one that has a specialized niche.

 

The Specialized Niche

This specialized niche can be about absolutely anything, as long as you think it has value and you think that there is plenty to teach someone about it.

When I say specialized, I mean a specific niche that stems from a broader niche. Here are some random examples:

3D animation and visualisation

Desert baking

Antique collecting

Brand identity design

Healthcare & Wellness

Online entrepreneurs

Watercolour Painter

T-shirt design

Car photography

Social media marketing

Wine

– so you see its good to base your niche on something you’re interested in, just pick one of your fondest hobbies, it could be anything, the more specific the better.

You could simply take up a new hobby and show the audience your progress, some examples include skin care, a new diet, a money making scheme or learning a musical instrument.

If you don’t know which niche to choose, then it’s good to consider something that you would be interested in learning about.

Your blog is where you store your research findings, through varied content which includes videos and images created by you. And remember, the more you learn, the more posts you’ll have to add to your blog.

So this is a great way to start a new hobby as you can also look back at how far you have come from start to finish. It works as a great incentive to learn and you will be sharing valuable information with others, which is a very good thing!

If you already have a blog, then you need to ask yourself if your niche is too broad. If you don’t want to change your blog into being more specific, then by all means you can create a new blog that is centred around your niche – and promote your new blog on your first blog.

 

The Winning Products:

Offering Consultation

Once your blog has been established and has gathered an audience, you can start to monetize it through offering consultation. You will be offering one-to-one consulting to customers either over the phone or through Skype at an hourly rate.

Because you are going to give people your undivided attention for an hour or more, then you can charge a premium price as that is what it will be worth, say £100 per hour.

If you don’t know what to tell them straight off the bat, here is a template which works with most niches- work with them to create a schedule that they will use for the next 2 weeks to a month (however long until your next consult).

Simply ask them questions about how much time they can devote to the objective, then pick out certain activities from a pre-made schedule that they can complete.

-Please note that to be successful in doing this, you should have gained credibility as a blogger and also gained a sufficient amount of knowledge to be able to answer questions that your consultant may have.

Offer a Video Collection &/or guidebook 

You can offer a video collection or a PDF guidebook for a reasonable fee of between £10 – £20.00.

This will only involve some work at first from you and then can be set up as an automated email from mailchimp.com.

To design your guide, you could use Flipsnack which offers 1 months free trial (try to get it done in that time). Have a look at my article on how I used Flipsnack Here.

Promoting Your Product:

Sales Page

Your salespage will need to be strategically designed to make a reader desire your product. Lets go over what works when designing a sales page:

  1. I highly recommend reading Tom Hopkin’s article ‘Arouse Emotions, Don’t Sell Logic’, he tells us that positive emotions create sales and negative emotions destroy sales.
  2. A personal story about yourself – People what to know that they can trust you to deliver the goods, and what really works in gaining trust is a personal success story that the reader can relate to. They want to visualise themselves experiencing the success that you provide evidence for.
  3. Make sure the design is modern, clean and stylish. Don’t use primary colours like red and blue to make text stand out, it just looks spammy.
  4. Use bullet points to sum up what you’ll receive – we like short summaries, especially in a three section column format as seen here.
  5. Include quotes from previous customers – this will help the potential customer to feel comfortable with purchasing your product.

For designing your blog, click here to find out How to Design a Blog in 2016

 

Host a Webinar

A ‘Webinar’ is a great way of marketing your website and gaining a potential customer’s trust and confidence in your product and knowledge.

A webinar is basically a live workshop with an interactive audience where you demonstrate a method from whatever it is you’re teaching. You can offer to answer questions either along the way or at the end.

You can either charge for your Webinars, or you can host them for free, if you host them for free you’ll most probably gain more attention.

InstantPresenter is a useful tool I recommend for having people sign up to your Webinar.

 

Affiliate Marketing Programs

You can sign up to an affiliate marketing website as a client and offer any potential affiliates a percentage of the price of your product, 25 – 50% is a recommended price if you want to be promoted successfully.

Here is a list of Affiliate marketing programs where you can stage your product:

Rakuten LinkShare

Shareasale

Clickbank

JVZoo

MaxBounty

Neverblue

CJ Affiliate by Conversant

Market Health

 

Social Media Marketing

There are many tools we can use to promote something through social media. To see how you can make the most of Facebook’s advertising service, check my post: Facebook Marketing Secrets.

For free longterm advertising on Facebook with a one-time payment at the start, we have Octosuite, Facebooks only mass group posting application. It also finds the most viral content on Facebook, Reddit, YouTube and Twitter, which you can then scrape and schedule as your own social media posts. Another useful add-on is its syndication for Twitter, Linkedin and Pinterest.

Buffer – whilst Octosuite is good at finding external content, Buffer is very good for posting your own content as it offers a “rebuffer” option that speeds up the process. It schedules your social media posts (Mine: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest) for the best times to post in the day for each website. Since using it I have seen a dramatic increase in activity on my website and also in my hobbies. Click here for a 2 week free trial, after that, Buffer only charges you £10 a month!

 

Summary

So there you have a collection of reasons why your blog should be more targeted in order to increase both traffic and sales. It may take a while to get it going but the hard work and preparation will start to pay off, and when it does, you’ll be happy and deserve a pat on the back for staying focused.

 

Matched Betting – Find Out How to Use Profit Accumulator to Earn Your First £1000

Matched Betting – Find Out How to Use Profit Accumulator to Earn Your First £1000

Matched betting is a very profitable money making method that I used to earn money during my time at University. You could say it was a very good part-time job, with some months earning over £1000.

 

If you think matched betting requires technical in-depth knowledge or mathematical skills, let me tell you it really isn’t as hard as it sounds. 

 

It took me about a week of practicing matched betting until I got the hang of things. Yes like most things it requires patience when getting started. 

 

So what actually is Matched Betting? 

Matched Betting is a method that uses the free bets that a bookie gives to their customers to entice them to place more bets. 

The Matched Better will take this free bet, make a calculation, and with these calculations they find out the amount of money to use on a lay bet so that you don’t lose any money. 

When placing a free bet given to us by a bookie, the amount of money put on the lay bet will equal in us earning 80% of the free bet we earned, regardless of winning or losing the bet. So if it is a £25 bet, we make around £20, and if it’s a £50 free bet we make around £35. 

If I’ve lost you and it’s not all that clear, don’t worry, that’s exactly how I felt when I started out. 

Luckily we have some well known sites and programs that teach us step by step how to do Matched Betting.

One program that I have used for over a year now is Profit Accumulator. 

Profit Accumulator is the most popular Matched Betting website and truly is a real find when it comes to researching online money making methods. 

They provide you with video tutorials and detailed instructions on how to complete each Matched Betting offer and use of their calculator, telling you how much to lay and how much money you’ll be making from the free bet.

In the free membership there are only 2 offers to complete that will earn you £45. 

In the paid membership (22.99 per month) you’ll find a much longer list of Advanced Offers to complete that will earn you around £1000, after you complete them you move onto a selection of ‘Reload offers’ that changes daily. 

 

This is what the members homepage looks like:

Profit-accumulator-homepageProfit-accumulator-homepage-2

Profit Accumulator is a quick cash scheme that actually works. Though it may sound hard to believe, this is no lie, however the £1000 sum does depend on the odds you choose and so the outcome varies, some make just under £1000 and others make just over.

I made £976 in my first month by completing the advanced offers, I may have earned more if it didn’t take me so long to understand that placing bets on higher odds earns you more money.

So if I can do it, anyone can, and if you look at some of the grammar and spelling on forum posts from people making thousands, you should feel confident that you will one day get the hang of it. When I was earning £100-500 per week from only Matched Betting, I felt I had to tell others, and it was all I spoke about for weeks on end.

Profit Accumulator say that the process of Matched Betting takes 1-2 hours of your day, but this isn’t necessarily true as it depends on the offer, as some offers have you going back throughout the day to check on results.

It takes me 1-2 hours now that I’ve had a lot of practice and know what I’m doing, at first it was more like 3 hours or so.

So that no mistakes are made, which believe me, they happen, you should take your time learning and completing the Advanced Offers before moving onto Reload offers.

Profit Accumulator has been around for a while now and their forum has gained a lot of active members.

profit-accumulator-forum

So if you have any doubts about what you’re doing, there is a very active forum where you can find expert advice. Once a question is posted there are usually a lot of devoted members of the community answering it for you. This forum is where I learned a lot of useful tips so it is worth spending the time reading it.

 

Automation Tools

Profit Accumulator is not just a directory for finding free bet offers from bookies, they have also developed tools that make the process of finding bets a LOT easier. In the section below I will give a brief overview of some of the nifty tools they have developed.

 

The Oddsmatcher 

The oddsmatcher is a vital tool for Matched Betting, nowhere on the internet is there an oddsmatcher as fast and flexible as the one available on Profit Accumulator. 

Oddsmatching-tool

The oddsmatcher currently scans 44 different bookie sites and finds matching odds on a bet, provides you with a link to the bet and a calculator to get you making your bet as fast as possible. The software has a rating system of 100%, over 100% makes you extra money on top of your free bet. 

Since their first tool, they have developed more impressive and useful tools that aim to make Matched Betting as easy as possible. 

 

The Match Catcher

The Match Catcher is an app with scheduled alerts for finding, matching and placing bets on horses. This is very useful as there are daily free horse racing refund bets available from bookies. 

 match-catcher-table-highlight

It scans through all of the eligible races for the free bet offer (so you don’t have to check which bookie to bet with). It speeds up the whole process of placing horse bets to help you earn as much as possible from them.

 

The Acca Catcher

A recent release is the Acca Catcher, an app designed to give you very little work to do for the Accumulator Refund offers. Before the acca catcher, the Matched Better had the tiresome process of finding and betting on accumulator combinations, filling out spreadsheets, remembering to check game results and place lay bets. 

acca-catcher-overview-laptop

With the Acca Catcher there is no need to find any bets as the app scans trillions of accumulator combinations and provides you with all the best ones to choose from (what will make you the most money). There is no need to remind yourself to check results of a game to make your lay bet as you’ll have email alerts sent to you. There is also no need for any spreadsheet as all the calculations and documentation is provided for you.

So as you can see, with Profit Accumulator, you not only get step by step instructions for how to do Matched Betting, with these three applications and the calculator too, earning money through Matched Betting is a breeze.

 

Summary

Matched Betting has been proven to be a viable way to make money and now with Profit Accumulators help, it can be done by anyone. The easy to follow instructions and tools that the website provides along with its massive community of support means you’d be missing out big time if you don’t sign up now!

 

If you want to know my favourite offer from Profit Accumulators website, and see how to make thousands with just 1 horse race with a loss of £5-10, visit my article: Matched Betting – How to Earn Thousands £££ from Extra Place Bets

How to Design a Blog in 2017 – 10 Rules to Obey When Designing Your Blog

How to Design a Blog in 2017 – 10 Rules to Obey When Designing Your Blog

 

If you’re an avid blog reader, you’ll know that blogs are now being made at a much higher standard than they once were. 

So we must keep up with the trends. In 2017 we are in the age of the soundbite, readers value small and easily digested chunks of information. This is reflected in the growth of minimalistic blogs – in particular, ones found widely on Pinterest.

Recently I have taken to revamping my blog and in doing so have conducted a lot of research on what to consider when designing your blog. 

So today I am sharing with you 10 rules I think you should try to obey when designing your blog.

 

Here are my 10 tips for designing a blog in 2017:

 

 1. Cater to your target audience

When deciding on an overall design, try to keep your target audience’s tastes in mind. Do your research and look at other blogs that use your particular niche, what colours do they use? Does the theme reflect the niche? 

 

 

2. Using a clean and flexible theme.

WordPress themes will give a nice layout, but if you want more flexibility with the design and don’t know CSS coding then there are drag and drop builders like Divi and X. 

 

3. Get your images at the right size for sharing on different social media sites.

For example think of the long featured images on Pinterest compared with the  rectangular images used on Twitter and Facebook. 

 

 

4. Use Attractive Graphics

If you have no experience in graphic design or access to tools, then take a look at these free apps which will build you some very smart looking blog images. 

Canva             Skitch             Pablo              Picmonkey                 Be Funky

As you can see with my blog’s featured images I am a fan of pretty flowers with symmetry and I use the very flexible Adobe Illustrator to just let the creativity flow.

 

 

5. Your reader likes empty space.  

The more empty space you have, the more pleasing it is for the eyes. And the more you can direct the readers attention.

 

 

6. Use padding.

Use at least 50px left and right padding to neatly package your writing. 

 

 

7. Don’t type hefty long paragraphs.

This way you can make your content seem manageable. 

 

 

8. Don’t fill your text with advertisements.

Coming across as pushy with making money on your blog will put your readers off. 

 

 

9. Studies show that we read in an F shape pattern down the webpage, scanning for the most relevant information to our query.

Take heed of this when writing your blog. Bullet points that summarise your main points will be valued as useful by your readers. 

 

 

10. Graphic designers use varying font sizes to demonstrate the importance of information to the viewer. 

In a blog post, we can make text stand out with different sized headings and the use of bold text. If you want another interesting way of highlighting text, you can give a section a border or a background colour.

So there we have 10 tips for designing your blog in 2017. 

 

With these tips you have everything you need to get started designing your blog professionally. 

 

Please share this post with your other fellow bloggers or potential blogheads.

How to Make Your Amazon Kindle eBook a Best Seller in Just 5 Days

How to Make Your Amazon Kindle eBook a Best Seller in Just 5 Days

Being the creator of an eBook grants you the power to promote and sell your own content. An eBook can be a powerful tool, and when used correctly, is a great way to bring in some steady recurring income.

When I created my first eBook, it felt like a huge accomplishment, something I could finally put my name on and do with what I pleased.

Anyone can create an eBook, you don’t have to be a literary genius, just a decent grasp of the English language and a spell/grammar checker will do.

An eBook isn’t an earn cash fast scheme, it is something to be slowly chipped away at over time. Imagine the potential of making one eBook every month?

It is important to have realistic ambitions, setting a goal of 1 hour of writing every 2-3 days would make sufficient progress.

 

How to Promote your eBook Successfully on Amazon

I have come across many articles from people claiming they can tell you what it takes to make it to number 1 on the Amazon bestsellers eBook list. After reading a little further down these posts they tell you they can make £1000 or so in the first week and never mention the exciting statement from the start in their post again. But £1000 in the first week is a more realistic outcome that we are going to aim for.

To get your ebook noticed and ranked as popular in Amazon, in the first few days you must offer it for free.

We do this through the Kindle Direct Publishing Select Program.

Research from Digital Book Today tells us that the best days to do a free eBook promotion on Amazon are Sundays and Mondays.

 

Prior to these days, or on the day I recommend you ask your family and friends to review your eBook for you, this is sure to give it more attention.

Now you need to promote the eBook like crazy while its free, as this will definitely entice a customer to download your content. In doing so we will rack up ratings and boost its overall popularity.

 

Here are some popular websites where we can promote free kindle books:

  1. Author Marketing Club – A directory of easy to fill out forms.
  2. Snickslist
  3. Addicted to ebooks
  4. Kindleboards.com
  5. Pixel of Ink
  6. Bargain Book Hunter
  7. EReader News Today
  8. Free Booksy
  9. Free Book Dude
  10. Ebook Lister
  11. Free Books Hub
  12. Frugal Freebies
  13. Hundred Zeros
  14. Totally Free Stuff
  15. Reddit (relevant forums and freebies forums)
  16. BlackHatForum
  17. OzBargain (- Must use an australian IP address)
  18. FatWallet
  19. SlickDeals
  20. I Crave Freebies

Promote on Social Media

Prior to the freebie promotion, you’ll want to prepare your social media.

Facebook groups

Find as many groups as you can which offer ‘freebies’ or ‘free ebooks’ and such in the title, and request to join them. You can use a Facebook mass group joiner and post scheduling tool like Octosuite to make the process a lot easier.

Here are a few Facebook groups to get started with:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/126278657527255/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/270558336379692/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/freebkrus/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/215918835174776/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/FreeTodayOnAmazon/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/426282137432533/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1013820968756497/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/freeebooks/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/236927589749427/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/341840249197060/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/294455560643884/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/182637088529255/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/370900356880/

Twitter Handles

Do your hashtag # research that is relevant to your ebook. Here are some to start off with: #Amazon #eBook #KPD (Kindle Publishing Direct) #FreeKindleReads #BookBuzzr #BookMarketing #Kindle #KindleBargain #BookGiveaway #WLCFreeToday

Find Twitter users who you think will be willing to promote your ebook, note their names down to @ them when you start to promote the free ebook. Choose people relevant to your niche, ebook promoters or anyone who promotes free stuff.

 

Here are some twitter users we can give an @ to:

@freebookclub1 @kindlestuff @KindleDaily @ibdbookoftheday @Booksontheknob @CheapKindleDly @digitalinktoday @kindle_free @Kindle_promo @bookbub @freeebooksdaily @zilchebooks @freedailybooks @fkbt  @Bookyrnextread @DigitalBkToday @free @freebookdude @4FreeKindleBook @IndAuthorSucess @IndieKindle @KindleFreeBook

Pricing your eBook

After 5 days of a free promotion, you should have gained popularity and some nice ratings (depending on your content).

Bestselling eBooks have a price range between £0.75 and £6.95.

I recommend £2.99 as an affordable price to pay, but it’s up to you.

To Sum up

If you’re thinking of publishing and selling a kindle eBook through Amazon, you should always do it through the KDP Select service first as it will get your eBook noticed and rated.

When the five days are over, its popularity during the 5 free days should have propelled it into the top most popular kindle eBooks on Amazon.

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