I hadn't seen my dad for about 7 years before I came back from China in 2012. I knew he was now over 50, and I pictured him much like the retired folk in China: hunched over, gray hair, wrinkled, and shaking his fist at kids on skateboards.
I was shocked to find out that he was running several times a week and did yoga on top of that. He's a lineman, which means he sometimes work all day and through the night (basically a 24 hour shift) fixing electricity and water stuff for the city. He spent all last month waking up at 5:00 am to get facilities set up for Amazon's distribution centers coming to a nearby town, and still had time to make it to the beach on the weekends.
The guy has more of a life than me.
But I watch the financial media every day, and it seems that this is not the case for everyone. Many people over 50 are losing jobs, being downsized or pushed out by a younger crowd. In a competitive job market where there's not enough to go around, I've personally read several blogs about getting forced into retirement.
Social security is not enough to live on, plain and simple.
A lucky few have locked in some kind of pension, and those that had the means to prepare via retirement investment portfolios will have more working capital. Some folks are just plain unemployed.
Let's make the best of a difficult situation:
There is a kind of work that is begging for retired or semi-retired individuals. It's not physically demanding, it can be done from home, it's ethical, and best of all, it can actually be fun. It will help you exercise your brain, help you meet people, and can provide you with residual income for years to come.
I know it sounds too good to be true, and your ‘Spidey Sense' is probably going off right now because it sounds like a scam.
Starting an online business might not have crossed your mind before, especially if you have no experience with computers or business. You found this web page, so you can't be that bad! As long as you have a willingness to learn, figuring out this ‘internet thing' is just a matter of having a bit of patience to build upon these skills that you already have.
The business part isn't really business-y at all. It's more of like a hobby. Let's start with one piece to the puzzle and put it together. Remember that if you have any questions after you're done reading, you can always email me for clarification.
The Core of an Affiliate Marketing Business
People search the internet for products and services. They buy stuff on Amazon or their favorite websites. Online shopping is already huge, and it's only going to get bigger in the coming years. But not just the big companies are making money, people with websites or blogs are making money as well.
By writing about the things you care about on your own website, people will naturally find what you write when they search in Google. If you like scrapbooking and write about it on your blog, when I type “How do I start scrapbooking” into Google, I might find what you wrote!
Most of the time, hobbies require some kind of equipment or materials. Fishing requires bait & tackle, hiking requires outdoor gear, and BBQing requires a grill of course! Let's say I love a great barbeque and just got an awesome grill. I write an article about it, post it on my website, and you stumble upon this article. Near the end of the post I say something like, “This grill was a great buy. If you're looking for a high quality, inexpensive grill, I recommend this one”. You, also a BBQ enthusiast are also in the market for a grill. You click the link and buy one.
I just made 10% of a $150 dollar sale, or a $15 dollar commission. You just got a great product. The vendor just made $135 dollars. Everyone is happy.
This is affiliate marketing in a nutshell, and it's how I propose you supplement your income during retirement.
The Dreaded Website
Most people at this point are thinking, “That sounds great, but I have no idea how to make a website!” Technology has seriously improved in the last decade and you no longer need to understand CODE to make a website. If you can follow instructions and click a few buttons then you are good to go. Really, building a website will NOT be the hardest thing you will have to do to start making money.
So what is the hardest thing?
There are a couple challenging things you will face. One will be competition from other websites. You will need to learn how to find low competition products and keyword phrases to help you website get found faster in Google. There's a whole art to this called “SEO”, but you don't need to worry about it at this point. Focus on making a website about something you care about and writing information that other people who care about the same thing want to read.
The other challenge that many people face is frustration and confusion. Like any new skill, it can seem daunting at first. But in the same breath, remember that also like any other skill, with time and patience, you can learn anything. Now that you're retired, time is one thing you should have plenty of!
The Money Part
The next thing you are hopefully asking is, “How much money”, and, “When”. This is different for everyone. It will depend on how fast you learn, how much time you have for working on your website, which products you promote, and the level of competition in your niche.
Some people will be able to nicely supplement their retirement income with a few hundred or thousand dollars per month (eventually). Others will find that they are now making more money than they made at their previous job.
How to Get Started
So, now we know that making a website isn't that difficult, and making money with a website isn't that complicated, what's next?
If you are pretty much with me at this point, then you are ready to start your training. The online business community where I received my training is called Wealthy Affiliate. There is a short review here and a detailed FAQ here. I suggest you read these to find out what this training center is all about.
If you are still unsure of some of the ideas I talked about today, there are two pages I would like to show you. One is a here (FAQ) and one is here (Essential Concepts). They should both explain things a bit better. After you visit those pages, then you can sign up for my 5 day email course which should help solidify a lot of this information AND provide you with some helpful information about Wealthy Affiliate.
Don't hesitate to ask me anything at all, I'm online pretty much every day so I should be able to respond to you within a couple hours, if not, at least within the day!
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