Once you start building your website and get a little bit familiar with how to get posts up properly and learn to write smoothly, it becomes easy to start looking for short cuts.

I don’t mean short cuts when you’re out for a walk in the afternoon. I mean short cuts in the form of plugins that might help you gain traffic faster or get more exposure for your website in social media among other things.

At this point, I’ll start with the plugins. If you’ve already begun building your website you probably know now by now that there are hundreds and hundreds of plugins that extend the capabilities of your WordPress website. They also can add special features that will enhance your visitors user experience (UX).

Read this article if you are not yet familiar with plugins and what they do.

Amazon Commissions

Many people have heard that it’s possible to make money with Amazon. It’s very appealing and natural for some to be drawn in to want a piece of this huge pie. I sure wanted in on it! Amazon shares its’ profits with those who help promote their products. This is basic affiliate marketing. You earn commission when something you promote sells through your links.

It’s not easy mind you, to build income with Amazon, but it’s very possible and well within the reach of most people who are willing to learn.

Short Cuts

It’s even easier to be drawn to some type of trick or tool to try and gain more sales or faster commissions once you get rolling with your website.

Although it’s very alluring, it’s not a good road to take. Tricks and short cuts tend to just come back and bite you in the bum and all you’ve done is waste valuable time.

A short cut using a plugin can mean something that helps you save time, something that automates a task such as posting or helps to gain traffic, or something that helps your site gain followers on Pinterest or even install a feature that can give away free gifts if someone responds to a particular offer on your site.

I’ve used many of these “time savers” and over a long time I finally realized that the secret isn’t in these time saving tricks. The secret isn’t in getting people to follow you and the secret isn’t in offering rewards to visitors…

The secret is again, that there is no secret. All you need to do is keep building out an awesome website with excellent function and lots of information with good relevant buy links. The people will naturally want to follow you and stay and buy products from you through the links in your great content.

This is called content marketing. Write good content with links to good products and the people will respond by purchasing, it just works.

Amazon Link Localizer

This plugin is not new and is somewhat controversial. The idea is that you gain the ability to get credit for sales using all of the different Amazon extensions around the world once you become a member of them all. Normally you’d choose your own local Amazon and be done with it. 

With the plugin, the idea is first to sign up to all of the available countries that Amazon is operating in around the world. Then after it is set up correctly, the plugin will direct your website visitors to their local Amazon while you still retain credit for the sale. This is something that you normally wouldn’t get credit for as an affiliate of Amazon. You are required to pick one Amazon and work with that one alone, all other sales in other countries you won’t get credit for. 

Brief Amazon Back Story

Currently Amazon operates separate retail websites in different countries around the world. They are operating in the United States, United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Australia, Brazil, Japan,China, India and Mexico. They have plans to further expand to more countries in the future. 

Amazon’s world wide sales are reported to be in excess of $107 billion in 2015 and that number just keeps on rising every year.

If you’re at all interested in online marketing then it doesn’t take long to see that there is a huge industry going on right under our noses and some people, regular people with normal lives are making tons of money from home!

Just for the record, there is nothing sketchy or shady about online marketing (when it’s done correctly and above board). Proof of this, is that everyone who is an affiliate of Amazon receives a T4 tax document showing all earnings for the year.

Viral Sharing Plugin

At one point along the way I found a plugin that said it would place the normal sharing icons (FB, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram etc) on my website with an additional green icon that would reward my visitors with gifts, discounts and other things if they shared the content of my website on various social media platforms. It sounded like a good idea to me, who wouldn’t want discounts and free stuff??

I had it installed on all of my sites and thought everything was great. But I didn’t see anyone sharing my stuff or seeing reports of anyone getting rewards for sharing my stuff.

Even though one of my sites was getting towards 1000 visitors a day, still nothing was happening. My customer service messages to the plugin owners were going unanswered no matter how many times I tried to contact them.

It turns out the site was sold! I had found the plugin and started paying for it while it was new and awesome and owned by the creator, who took great care of it and had great customer service. I emailed with him several times and had no issues.

However, through trying to find out why I was getting surprisingly bad customer service, I found out that it was sold months before I figured that out that it was sold.

So now, I’m over paying for a plugin that doesn’t work and I can’t find anyone to answer me and properly cancel the account.

The lesson learned here is that your website doesn’t need a gimmick to try and encourage people to share the content. If your content is good enough then your visitors will naturally share on their own even if there is no reward to be had.

I have since removed both of these plugins from my websites and have seen an increase in traffic and sales. My sites load faster and they aren’t as “heavy” in it’s UX functions.

The plan for the days going forward are to just write good content and let that do the talking for me with the keywords. There’s no need for tricks or short cuts or gimmicks with your website.

What short cuts have you tried? Did they work out or have you learned other ways to do things? Please leave a comment below.


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