Don’t Buy a Niche Site Course Without Evaluating the Source

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niche site course

Do you know what it feels like to have money randomly deposited into your Paypal account? I do. And let me just tell you – it is freaking awesome! Random income generated from work done in the past is the essence of what this whole passive income thing is all about.

Almost all of my passive income, though, is generated by selling or promoting other peoples products. This includes affiliate income from this site and from my niche sites, Adsense pay-per-click income, as well as Amazon affiliate sales from my niche sites. All other peoples stuff. I say almost – because I did create some service based income in the past (selling keyword packages). But that wasn’t exactly passive. What that experience did for me though was showed me my potential and gave me a taste of having random people pay me for something that I created.

Creating an online course is something that’s always been in the back of my mind. More often than not, when I read or hear about somebody who suddenly hit it big with their internet income – it usually resulted from them creating and selling an online course. And it’s really not that hard. Simply create a course based on something that you know and put it out there. Undoubtedly – there will be people out their willing to hand their money over to you in exchange for your knowledge.

A public case study would be the next best thing. Sharing your knowledge via a series of blog posts over time creates credibility through transparency. If you can prove that your strategies work and give away tons of information for free – your readers will surely buy whatever you are selling as a result. Whether it is a product of your own or affiliate products. Either way, your results will speak for themselves and people will want to copy you (assuming your case study is successful).

Bloggers in the Niche Site Space

The internet marketing and the make-money-online blogging space is extremely competitive and saturated. It seems like there are about a million of us. And yes – I am one of them. But specifically, I tend to focus on bloggers who are in the niche site space. Niche sites are what interest me the most. I’ve been working on building up my own portfolio of niche sites for several years now. And I’ve been blogging about it a little bit along the way too.

So naturally, I like to follow other like-minded bloggers. Some of them are small-time, like me. Maybe earning only a few hundred or low 4-figures per month. But there are a handful of bloggers out there who are earning 5-figures and even 6-figures per month! Most people reading this probably already know who the most popular ones are…

Pat Flynn – known as one of the best (and most popular) teachers out there in the internet marketing space. Pat’s extremely popular and successful first niche site case study – The Niche Site Duel – has made him a small fortune. Both from the few thousand dollars per month that the site still brings in (it was started in 2010) and from the massive amount of affiliate sales he’s generated over the years by teaching others exactly how he built the site and the tools he used along the way.

Summary – Pat makes a few thousand from his niche sites and makes 10’s of thousands by teaching others how to do what he does.

Spencer Haws – became a master at creating small Adsense niche sites (back when those still worked) and gained massive popularity and a huge following by blogging about his journey and showing how he was able to create enough niche site income to quit his day job. In an effort to make his keyword research process easier, Spencer created his own keyword research tool – Long Tail Pro. This tool has grown in popularity and has become the market standard and by far the best keyword research tool available on the market.

Summary – Spencer gained authority by teaching based on his success and now makes a comfortable living by collecting residual income for Long Tail Pro sales – a tool created to help niche site builders.

Wanna-be’s (like me) – there are a bunch of us out there who are blogging about our niche site successes and failures. A few of us even publish monthly income reports. But not very many have been able to parlay our small successes into massive successes yet like the big guys. And that’s what I am evaluating here in this post…

Why are the big guys so successful and the rest of us are stuck in smallville?

To sum it up – the big guys are successful because they’ve built up trust through honesty and transparency. They show exactly what they are doing to create income and people naturally want to do the same. While they’ve made some decent money from their successful niche sites – the majority of their income comes from their ability to teach others how to do what they are doing.

Evaluating the Source

If you’re thinking about buying a niche site course or ebook or following along with a public case study – you may want to consider the following questions pertaining to the source.

Are they doing what they teach?

Is the author or creator of the niche site course actually building their own successful niche sites? Are they all talk and no play? Do they have even one successful niche site? Anybody can pretend to know what they are talking about. Anybody can regurgitate information they’ve learned from others. If I am going to spend my money on a course or ebook – I certainly want to know that the person who wrote the course is actually practicing what they preach.

Do they have proof?

Here’s the kicker. Anybody can create a niche site and say that it is successful. But do they have proof? Do they produce regular income reports or share screenshots (or even videos) that prove their income? Does their niche site even exist? While most are unwilling to share their actual URL’s – there are other ways to prove that a site actually exist. A couple of ways might include: income source screen shots or keyword ranking report screenshots.

How current is their information and strategies?

The world of niche websites and the entire SEO landscape has changed drastically over the years. If you are reading dated information and learning older strategies – be careful before implementing on your own niche sites. For example, the Empire Flippers (formerly Adsense Flippers) published this eBook – Building a Niche Site Empire – back when Adsense micro niche sites were very popular and profitable. Tons of great information in that book – but Justin and Joe would be the first to tell you that many of the tactics in their book don’t apply at all today and might hurt your site rather than help it.

Do they stand the test of time?

This goes along with the previous point. When evaluating the credibility of your source, you may want to verify that they still have current sites that are still earning. Google is notorious for their search engine algorithm updates and even for handing down penalties for various reasons. These updates and penalties have been known to completely wipe out traffic to niche websites – which means that their income is also wiped out. If you’re going to buy a niche site course or eBook from somebody, or even follow their case study – it might be wise to verify that their own niche sites were able to withstand the test of time.

My Own Course or Case Study

I’m not a fool and I can see the writing on the wall. If I’m ever going to hit it big with this online income thing – I need to create my own course or at least feature a successful public niche site case study. I think I’ve done a pretty good job at gaining trust with my audience and readership on this blog. I’ve done this by being totally honest and completely transparent all the way from the very beginning.

But as I mentioned in one of my old income reports, I don’t feel very credible due to my lackluster income that I bring in each month from my niche sites. Several hundred dollars per month is okay. But people want to copy somebody who is bringing in several thousand dollars per month.

Public Case Studies

I’ve actually started several of these over the course of time that this blog has been in existence. And I’ve failed to complete each and every one of them. My best and most popular was the Niche Site at Night series that I started a few years ago. I started off strong and affiliate sales were taking off as a result – but then I lost interest and focus and started working on other sites instead and never made it back to that case study site. I’m 100% confident that if I were to follow through on a public case study series like that – my internet income would jump to the next level. If only I had more time…

Niche Site Course

While the joy and excitement you feel when earning affiliate commissions is great – it hardly compares to the awesome feeling you get when you get a Paypal notification that somebody has just sent you money and purchased something that you actually created. Something that you have up for sale online. It is such an incredible feeling. You really have to experience it to know what I mean.

For this reason alone – I’ve always known that I want to have ‘something’ for sale. Some sort of digital product that can be sold over and over again. It only seems natural that a niche site course is what my offering should be. Niche sites are one of my main interests when it comes to internet marketing (blogging is the other). I am passionate about creating the very best niche sites in each of my respective niches – and I love sharing my knowledge and skills as best as I can via my blog.

So why don’t I create a niche site course to sell on this blog? Two easy answers come to mind. Time and credibility. I know I whine about it too much – but I just don’t have the extra time. If I were going to sell my own course, extremely high quality would be my top priority and it would take a very long time to create something like I envision. And like I’ve discussed already – I just don’t feel very credible with my current niche site income levels.

If I were evaluating myself - I don't know if I would buy my own Niche Site Course!Click To Tweet

Niche Site Courses from Credible and Trusted Sources

Since I won’t be creating my own niche site course anytime soon – I think it would be relevant to share a few credible courses with you to conclude this post. Both of these are extremely high quality courses that come from 100% credible sources. I’ve personally vetted each of them. I’ve been in contact with both of the course creators and sellers. I’ve been following each of them for years and I know their stuff! Both of these guys know what they are talking about and their courses offer insane amounts of value.

Both of the courses that I am about to share with you are similar and different at the same time. They both teach you how to create and promote content for niche (or authority) sites. They teach you how to promote your sites, get traffic to your sites and how to earn money. But both teach from a different perspective and both have their own unique strategy and teaching style.

Niche Site Courses from Credible and Trusted SourcesClick To Tweet

RankXL Niche Site Course by Chris Lee

Focus: Niche Sites and Making Money with Adsense

Source: RankXL blog

I highly recommend you check out Chris’s niche site course. Simply click on the button below and take a few minutes to read his sales page. I’ve got to tell you – I have been evaluating the source. And I definitely think that Chris is credible and it is obvious that he knows what he is talking about. Just read through a few of his blog posts and you’ll see what I mean.

I feel 100% confident in promoting Chris’s RankXL Niche Site Course on my blog because I’ve checked it out thoroughly myself and read through several of the Modules and Units. I even picked up a few tricks that I had never heard before! If I had the time to create and sell a course of my own – mine would be almost identical to this one. The only thing I would do differently is make mine adaptable for both Amazon and Adsense sites. Chris focuses mostly on Adsense.

But never fear. If you buy Chris’s course through one of my affiliate links – I’ve included a bonus which will be delivered to you automatically. It’s my PDF entitled, Producing Content for Amazon Niche Sites. If Amazon sites are your thing, you could take the information I provide in my PDF and combine it with Chris’s insanely detailed niche site course and come up with your own winning combination. Here is the button that leads to Chris’s course…

RankXL Niche Site Course

Invest in Yourself

I realize that these courses are a little bit pricey. They may not be for everybody. I, myself, started out the dumb way and insisted on stumbling through everything myself and learning from my mistakes. But if you want to skip many of those mistakes and learn how to build profitable niche websites in step-by-step fashion – I definitely suggest that you consider one of these courses. Pick the one that looks best suited for you and the type of site you think you want to build.

When paying for a niche site course (or training program) like any of these – don’t look at it as an ‘expense’ – instead, consider it an investment. You are investing in yourself and in your future. It’s similar to paying for a college education – except that ALL of these courses or WAY cheaper than college and they are WAY more actionable and will actually teach you how to do something that will create income!

Cheaper than college and WAY more actionable. Consider one of these Niche Site CoursesClick To Tweet

And again, I encourage you to do your own due diligence and evaluate the source before buying any of these. I can tell you that I’ve already done that due diligence for you. I’ve been reading all of these blogs myself. But you should do the same before you buy.

Lastly – perhaps you aren’t interested in any of these courses or maybe you simply don’t have the money to pay for one of them right now. If this is the case – I have something for you too! It’s not a niche site course by any means – but I did create my own PDF guide that shows you how to produce content for Amazon niche sites. Lots of helpful stuff with the guide that will help you get started. Simply click on the button below to get instant access to my FREE Guide!

FREE Guide – Producing Content for Amazon Niche Sites

Good Day!

Note: The links or buttons within this post that lead to sales pages are affiliate links. If you choose to buy any of these courses after clicking through via one of my links, I will receive a commission. I really appreciate it and Thank You in advance if you choose to support my blog by doing so. You’re awesome!

Image Credit

Kat’s Eyes” by Pigstick1 via Flickr

  • Thanks for this post and the honesty you shared. It’s refreshing to hear. I’ve followed your blog for over a year and agree it’s hard to stay focused sometimes on one project. I will checkout referral. Shana

    • Hey Shana – thanks for dropping me a line in the comments section. I appreciate you appreciating my honesty! 🙂 It’s what I do… I gotta tell you – I’ve had lots and lots of offers over time from people who want me to promote their stuff on my blog. Most I simply ignore. Some I look at more carefully. And very few make it to my blog like this offer. And the only way I can possibly promote is in a 100% honest way.

      No I didn’t read every last word in Chris’s course. And no I’m not following it myself to build my own Adsense niche site. But I did look it over carefully and checked Chris out thoroughly before deciding to promote his course – and the post that you just read is what came out when I started typing. Totally unplanned to write it the way I did. It’s just how it came out. Glad you enjoyed it.

  • James

    Good article Matt. I haven’t talked to you in a while. Things kinda slowed down a bit but are picking back up. Thanks for the honesty!

    • Hey James – glad you liked this one. Always honest – the only way to go. Good to hear things are picking back up!

  • AA

    this is a great post, especially the section about why the big guys are so successful… thanks for the info

  • Building a case study is the way to go for now. It will hopefully keep you motivated to keep pushing forward and give some insight into your methods of building successful niche sites.

    • I know that a full-blown case study with all details is what I should do and what I need to do. I also know that I simply don’t have that kind of time. Doing this internet marketing thing and running several sites at once is challenging enough on a very part-time basis the way I am doing it.

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  • Hey Matt,

    Got your mail buddy…. its a but late though cause i already got the course. Nevertheless am going to share this one.

    • No worries Babs. I didn’t email you to try to get you to buy. Just to show you what I wrote and hope that maybe you would share. I see that you tweeted already. Thanks!

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  • Fantastic update Matt!

    I totally support your three recommendations, I’ve taken both Chris Lee’s and Tung Tran’s courses…. best money I ever spent. I haven’t taken Spencers yet but if it’s anything like his blog it’ll be good. IF you can afford it, I’d also recommend Brian Dean’s SEO That Works… again money well spent. I’ve taken a ton others, but they’re pure junk and won’t mention them at all!

    Thanks for sharing and keep grinding!

    • Thanks for validating my recommendations Todd! I didn’t even know Brian Dean had a course. But yeah, I’m sure his is good too based on the quality of his blog and the value that he delivers there for free. And you’re right… I’ve seen other courses over the years as well – but you really have to consider the source based on the criteria I laid out in this post.

  • Vinny Borg

    Thanks for this post Matt. I noticed that there’s quite a difference in price between the 3 courses. Which one would you recommend for a total newbie? Meaning someone who has no idea of how to build a website to start with.
    Also I came across the ‘Wealthy Affiliate’ course. Have you ever checked this out. Do you have any thoughts?

    • Hey Vinny – I’ve heard of the Wealthy Affiliate course – but no, I’ve never thoroughly checked it out.

      For somebody who has NO idea how to start a website at all – I wouldn’t suggest any of these courses. All of them assume that you have a basic knowledge of how to start a website and post content online (for the most part). For a total newbie – I have a great suggestion on my Start Here page (http://dumbpassiveincome.com/how-to-start-with-passive-income-online/) – it’s a FREE course by WP Beginner. That shows you the basics of WordPress and my Start Here page shows you exactly how to get up and running with your first website…

      After all of that is under control – I would suggest either the RankXL course (if you prefer to focus on Adsense earnings) or the AMZ Affiliate Bootcamp (if you prefer to focus on Amazon earnings). Authority Machine might be the most intense (hands on) training and could apply to either type of website. But I, personally, would start with one of the other two if I were a total newbie.

      • Vinny Borg

        Thanks for the very comprehensive reply Matthew.

  • DET Thailand

    thanks for this useful informations Matt. I own the RankXL course already and I like to know if there is another chance to get your pdf Producing content for Amazon Niche Sites?

    • Yes! And thanks for reminding me!! When I was updating this post, I took that out and meant to add it back in but forgot. I just added the button to the very bottom of the post where you can always access my free guide. Even if you already have it or are already on my email list, simply click that button and insert your email address and I’ll send over the guide again.

  • Really nice article. I am in the same boat as you. I make a few hundred a month from my niche sites and don’t feel validated enough yet to create a course. Hoping that changes for you and for me 🙂

    • Yeah Carlin – hoping the few hundred per month part changes. I’m not even sure I would want to create my own course anymore. There’s already so many great ones available and it would take SO much time and SO much hard work to create a high quality course. I might rather use that time to just create more niche sites and stay a little bit more low-key.

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