Hello Guys, We have started our Interview series where we share some pro blogger’s experience on blogging and how they make money from it. In our first interview, we have Anil Agarwal with us. He is a pro blogger and affiliate marketer who earns six-figure income from his blog.
So, Stay tuned with us and read this interview carefully to learn how he becomes a pro blogger. I am sure, as a newbie, you will learn a lot from him. So, without wasting your time let’s get started…
Q1. Hello Anil, Please introduce yourself to our audience?
Thanks a lot, Vishwajeet for having me on your blog.
For the BloggingGate audience, let me share a few details about me.
Guys, I have a blog at BloggersPassion.com and HostingMonks.com. And Recently I started working on MakeBlogging.com blog as well.
I have been Blogging for more than fifteen years now and most of the revenue on my blogs comes while selling affiliate products and my own eBooks. Soon, I’m going to launch my premium eBook around SEO.
For a long time, I was doing blogging along with my day job. But for the last two years, I’ve been blogging full time. From my blogs, I’m able to make $10K plus revenue every month.
Q2. Please tell us about your blogging journey, How you got started?
After finishing my master’s degree in computers from an average college in 2004, I was looking for any type of job. Around that time, I got the job of SEO executive in a company in Gurgaon. I was getting a salary of INR 4000 only at that time.
That was not enough money especially when I know I will be getting married very soon. So I started using Blogs just to try out things at my level.
I started with free blogs on Blogger.com for a couple of years. Once I started getting traffic on those blogs, I was monetizing them through Google Adsense.
Later I started my first self hosted blog around blogging topics and sold to a UK guy via Flippa in 2011 for an amount of $35K.
I have been running the BloggersPassion blog since 2010 and the HostingMonks.com blog since 2019.
Q3. What are the top 3 proven blogging strategies that you recommend to a new blogger to build a profitable blog in 2020?
That’s an interesting question Vishwajeet.
Study the New Blogs That Are Doing Well on Google Search
When you have a new blog, you should pick the topics where the competition is very less. You should target the blogs that were started in the last one or two years and study what kind of keywords they are ranking on Google.
You can use any SEO tool for this purpose. If they can rank for those keywords, you can also do the same.
Create 10X Content
Once you have the list of topics with you (with their target keywords), the next task is to create 10X content. By creating 10X content, I mean creating content that should be better than all the top 10 ranked websites in Google.
Promote Your Content
Lots of new bloggers miss this part completely. You cannot get good results in Google search if you are not doing marketing for your blog content.
Do internal linking. Share your content on social media channels where you are active. Create a video version of a few of your important content. Go to Quora type of question-answer websites and reply to a few relevant questions while linking to your blog contents.
If you are building an email list, send a newsletter dedicated to the contents that you are publishing on your blog.
If you have relevant traffic on your blog, you will surely be able to monetize it via the method of your preference. For us, affiliate marketing does best.
Q4. How to create a blog sales funnel that actually makes money?
You should create informational as well as commercial content on your blog. Mostly you will get more traffic on information contents as most people love to link to educational content. So what you can do is, you can try sending more traffic from your informational contents to commercial contents.
What kind of commercial content to Create?
Suppose I want to get sales for a hosting affiliate product. So I will do a dedicated review of this product. Then I will do posts where I will be comparing this product with other products in the market. I will also do a few contents where I can talk more about its special features and benefits etc.
I will also do some Top 10 style posts where I will be mentioning the products I want to get more sales for.
Work Towards Getting Better Rankings for Your Money Pages
As discussed earlier, first we should link to the money pages from other high traffic pages we have on our blog.
What Else can be done?
Work towards improving the speed of your money pages.
Keep improving the content quality of these pages.
Build some high quality backlinks for your money pages if you can.
Once you have the traffic on your money pages, you can expect sales coming via those pages. And then you should work towards getting more sales from that same traffic (Conversion optimization).
Q5. If you were going to start over again, how do you choose a niche?
Hopefully I will be able to get a decent success with this blog in the next couple of years. It’s going to be easy for me as I already have lots of experience about this domain and how things work here.
If someone is in the hunt to find the list of the most profitable niches, they should check out this post.
Q6. How do you come up with blog post ideas for your blog?
Let me share you my process about coming up with blog post ideas here:
– I will study my competitor websites and for what kind of topics they are ranking well. If I’m convinced I can create better content then those websites, I will go for that topic idea.
– If I have decided to cover topics related to affiliate marketing on my blog. I will try to create content around most questions people have about affiliate marketing. Let me share you few basic content ideas around affiliate marketing:
Beginners guide to Affiliate Marketing
How to Get More Affiliate Sales?
How to Create an Affiliate Website?
Must have tools or plugins for a Successful affiliate website
Best Affiliate programs
Individual affiliate product reviews etc.
This way, I will end up creating 20-30 contents at least around one broad topic.
– if I’m running one more blog in the same niche, I will try to create some easy to rank topics on my new blog as well. There is no harm in working on the things that are already working for you. This way, I will be able to get more space for my blogs in Google search (for the same set of keywords).
– You can also use Quora type question answer websites to come up with blog post ideas. You should go to Quora.com and search for your base term there. It will show you lots of questions around your keyword.
Important Note: Keyword research is very important to me. I don’t create any content on my blog without doing proper keyword research. For each post I’m doing on my blog, I happen to have a primary and a few secondary keywords.
And if you want to master the art of keyword research, you can grab my keyword research eBook from here.
Q7. What are the 3 WordPress tools you can’t live without?
Rank Math Plugin: We recently moved to Rank math plugin. Earlier we were using Yoast SEO pro version. But when we see we can get all the features of Yoast Pro (Even more) in Rank Math for free, so why pay Yoast SEO.
CrazyEgg: We have been using CrazyEgg on our blogs for a few years now. It helps in understanding the user behaviour on our blog and helps with better conversion rate.
WP Rocket Plugin: We have been using this premium caching plugin for a couple of years on our blog. You need a good caching plugin to make sure all important contents are loaded within 2-3 seconds. Click here to buy WPRocket
Q8. What’s your #1 way to increase traffic to a new blog?
Don’t go for high difficulty keywords when you have a new blog. Go for the keywords where you see other websites or blogs that were started in the last one year type are ranking in the top 10 results.
If you see one or two results from new websites in top 10, you can give a try to that keyword.
Then you have to create great content while fulfilling users intent and promote it to get much needed traffic from Google and other search engines.
Q9. What are the golden rules of blogging according to you?
Consistency is really important when it comes about blogging. If you had planned to publish one content on your blog every week or twice a month, stick to that plan.
Write short paragraphs. One loves to read long paragraphs. Try to add as many visuals you can in your blog content. Having visuals in your content helps with better social shares, dwell time, and better rankings on Google.
Keep a check on your blog performance. Try to analyze the impact of your actions. Try to analyze the data you have in different tools and take the necessary steps.
Q10. In your blogging journey, what blogging mistakes cost you a lot?
One mistake that I made and lots of other bloggers are making is not focusing on email lists. Email lists are one thing that we own. We can get sales, send traffic to targeted pages, or get any desired action if we have an active email list.
For sure we should work on different platforms that are helping us with traffic and branding. But we don’t have control of them and they can make changes which will almost zero down all of your presence.
Like Facebook, Pages were a big hit once but now they are almost dead. So all of your efforts that you put for your fan page are total waste now.
If you have a new blog, go to Quora.com type of question-answer websites, and reply to the relevant questions.
When replying, you should link to your content in a few of your answers. This way you will be able to build some backlinks, traffic, and sales at the same time as traffic coming from the Quora platform is really high-quality traffic.
Vishwajeet, here few tips you can implement to increase affiliate sales
- Study where your website visitors are clicking the most and then add important CTA (Call to Action) on those places.
- If a particular landing page is already helping you with few sales, try to send more traffic to this landing page. But make sure traffic should be relevant.
- If you are getting some sales for a product, try to find some high traffic posts on your blog, where you are talking about and link to that product in a natural way.
I hope you have enjoyed this interview and found it useful. I am really thankful to Anil for responding to my interview request and answer my questions thoroughly. Don’t forget to share the post with your friends.