Questions and Answers
I recently added a button on the sidebar of this website to encourage readers to submit questions. I did this for two reasons….1) So my readers could submit questions and get help on specific items, of course and 2) so that I would have specific topics to write about that would be directly beneficial to my readers. Sometimes I go long stretches of time between posts simply because I’m not sure what to write about, what people are interesting in hearing me blab about, and whether or not what I have to say is helpful to anyone. I always try to answer questions left in the comments sections of each post, but I thought this Q&A button would encourage more participation. Please continue to comment on the blog posts, but you can also use the Ask a Question button to get a more detailed response, answered in a blog post like this one. So, without further ado, let’s get to it.
Here is one of the questions I have received lately, along with my answer/response/suggestions/tips. If you also submitted a question, I will be answering it in a blog post soon. I hope that these tips and suggestions will help more than just the one person asking the question.
How do you get so many Mr Rebates referrals, is it purely your offline friends?
Answer: This question pertains to my previous post, where I talked about how I consistently earn $200-$300 per month in passive income from the Mr Rebates referral program. If you haven’t read that post yet, hop on over there and read it first, so you know what the heck I’m talking about in the first place.
To answer the question, “is it purely your offline friends?” – No, it’s not my offline friends. In fact, I only personally know three people who have signed up as my referral (out of approximately 500 referrals that I currently have). I started getting referrals and earning cash back from Mr Rebates in 2009. For the entire year of 2009 I only had four referrals. I’m not even sure how I got those four referrals way back then, but I know in 2010 I started seeing this referral program as a potential source of income for me. I was excited about it because there really was no selling involved, yet I could make money from it. I started mentioning Mr Rebates on my free Blogger blogs, and even started a Blogger blog specifically for this purpose. I started adding my referral link to my online profiles and adding it to my email signatures. The cash back websites, including Mr Rebates, used to pay out a much higher rebate than they do now for shopping on eBay, and at one point I sold small items on eBay, so I would also add it to my eBay signature, which would be on any email correspondence with my eBay buyers.
As I started getting more referrals and earning more referral commissions, I started my own website called cash-back-websites.com, where I was making blog posts about the coupon code deals and rebates for specific stores. I would use my keyword research tool to find out which stores had the most people searching for coupon codes, and then I would write a post about where they could find coupon codes and also add in the fact that not only could they get coupon codes, but they could also get free cash back. The website was getting good traffic and I was getting new referrals. But then I had all kinds of problems with my hosting and basically all my websites went offline for a while. However, even though it was dead for a while, I held on to the domain name, with the intention that I would build it back to it’s former glory. I rebuilt a few pages on another hosting provider, and right now, it’s just a few summary pages with general information on it. All the while, I have still been collecting referral commissions every time my referrals shopped. It has been an ongoing income stream for me, regardless of my current effort or lack thereof, to promote it.
I also had Squidoo lenses about how online shoppers could save money by using cash back websites like Mr Rebates. However, those lenses have been deleted, during the overreaction period where Squidoo got rid of all the lenses with too many affiliate links (even though readers of those lenses were finding the products they wanted and were buying from those pages). Anyway, I could go on and on about Squidoo’s policy changes, but let’s just say, I’ve moved on.
I have also used Backpage.com’s automatic repost ads to post ads in the business opportunity section. You can make an ad, then pay $3.00 to have it automatically reposted 26 times. Most cities are $3.00 for 26 posts, but a few of the cities are $6.00.
In the past I have also shared on Twitter and Facebook (pages), and currently I have a Pinterest board where I share coupon codes and special deals.
Basically I have used a variety of online ways to promote Mr Rebates.
The Mr Rebates referral system was really one of the first ways I actually began making money online in a consistent passive way. Yes, I was doing promoting and blog posts on the front end, but the referral system is set up so that you keep commissions every time your referral shops, for years to come, making it one of the best online referral programs. So if I could get a shopper signed up who would be making numerous online purchases, it would be an ongoing revenue stream for me. It really made me start thinking about ongoing passive income. Income I could receive on an ongoing basis, from work I did one time. I make a blog post once, but someone may come along and read that blog post 3 years later, and sign up through my referral link, and if they shop online and earn cash back on their purchase, I earn a referral commission.
With any sort of revenue stream, I think there can be a lot of positive effects by simply writing about it online. In today’s modern world, when someone has a question about something, the first thing they do is “Google it”. So if you have written a blog post about the topic they are trying to find an answer for, they may stumble across your blog. And I think that if you consistently post to the blog, you will gradually gain more and more website traffic to your blog or website. And if you already have a loyal following on Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest or YouTube, then simply tell them how to save money on their online shopping. They will be happy to save the money, and you will happily get a referral commission.
So in a nutshell, that’s how I have so many referral sales.
I will be posting more answers to your questions soon, and until next time, go post something online about your business or about the products you are trying to sell! Be deliberate and intentional about marketing your small business!