A Day in the Life of JonnyQ888

A Day in the Life of JonnyQ888

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Night Off

'Nuff said=)




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Monday, February 27, 2006

A/B Split Test is Ready

I set up the split test after I came home today. I showed version B to a friend and she agreed that it is better than A. Hopefully "better" = sales.

Other than that, I made some changes to Overture and that was about it. I pretty much took the night off tonigt. You do the same=)




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Sunday, February 26, 2006

Ready for the Test

The B version page is complete. This merchant allows you to create your own tracking urls so I will be able to determine which page the traffic is coming from and which is making sales. I personally like the B version better in some respects. The graphics, layout, and intentions are all different. I will have the adgroup set up tomorrow night.

One thing worries me. I have not made any sales with this merchant since I reported them the week before last. The site hasn't changed and neither has my ad position for the top seller of that week. I'm hoping that it is just a matter of traffic and increasing conversions. Hopefully those sales were not a fluke because I really like this merchant and the potential is there. I have been in contact with the affiliate manager for this merchant and he has been very helpful. It makes sense that an affiliate manager should want to do everything in their power to make the affiliate successful - my success means their success.




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Thursday, February 23, 2006

PPC3 Ver B

I'm making some headway on version B of PPC3. Starting out, I will only do the top selling products from last week. With this version of the landing pages, I am trying emulate the merchant's site as closely as possible so that the transition from mine to theirs is less perceptible. I am also highlighting some of the better deals the merchant is offering with that particular product rather than discussing the features. If I continue to make this kind of progress, the A/B test should be ready by next week.

Made another lead today but it was one of the smaller one the merchant offers. Other than that, nothing new. I'm going to cut this short. I have a headache and want to add some more keywords to Overture before I can't look at the monitor any longer. Night.




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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Consistency

That's what my focus is right now. It has been so easy to slip into getting caught up in each day's actions. I need to approach PPC2 & 3 with a wider perspective in order to get them to deliver on a regular basis. I will contemplate this tomorrow at work but here is what I have come up with so far.

PPC2: More Traffic
Not only will I continue to add words to Overture, I will go back to Adwords to try to grab more traffic. The form has been tweaked to the nth degree so after I get decent traffic levels, I will be able to see what needs to be done to increase conversions.

Burke mentioned in the comments using a newsletter to try to get those that do not immediately convert. I'm torn on this issue. I know it is a good idea however money for an autoresponder is money that I will not have for ads.

PPC3: More Traffic, High Conversions
So far, it appears that I need 100+ visitors/day to make sales with PPC3. The first order of business is getting traffic back to those levels as they were last week. This means doing the Overture/Adwords combo here, too.

I am in the process of making the second version of the landing page for the top sellers from last week. The conversion rate was just under 2% for those days, however my goal is 4%. The A/B Split Test will hopefully help me get there.

And to Mark's question: the computer does the rebooting thing randomly. Sometimes I will go all day with no problems, other times it will die on me after an hour of being on. I have narrowed the problem down to either a virus, hard drive problem, or a problem with the electrical system in my apartment. If the outlets are not delivering enough power, then it would cause the computer to restart and this would explain why it would do so repeatedly. I really can't say for certain about any of it though.




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Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Blasted Computer!

Just as I was working last night, the computer started to restart itself again. I have no idea what the deal is but it is aggravating like you wouldn't believe. To make things worse, I had news to tell.

I had my first real lead yesterday on PPC2!!

Yeah, I flew into a panic when that happened. I was able to get the info sent to the merchant without too much trouble though. Hopefully things are going to turn around for me now. While it may not be conducive to catching Burke in the race to $100/day, I am going to focus on PPC2 & 3 for awhile. I have had a taste of victory with both so I know it can be done. Right now, it is just a matter of making the two consistent producers. I will test particular products direct to merchant on occasion as well.

Not much else is going on. The tastes of victory have me pretty excited. The goals: increase traffic and conversion rates for both. No news there=)




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Thursday, February 16, 2006

More Product Pages

I was able to add two more product pages to PPC3 tonight. I found out tonight that my merchant has a data feed that I can use if I am so inclined. I have never used one before but it would be interesting to see if the data feed sells better than my landing pages.

I'm thinking about making a gamble. The reason I have not done the A/B test for PPC3 is because Adwords is the only way I know how to pull it off. Unfortunately, this area is ridiculously competitive there and the bids are high. I'm thinking about making some ridiculous bids on a product that has sold consistently this week so that I can see which design makes more sales. The costs would come up front but the knowledge would help me improve all of my other landing pages, hopefully increasing sales across the board.

Guess what? I woke up this morning and started brushing my teeth while checking my email. In the mail box was my first lead for PPC2. But alas, an error in my code (one that I was aware of but forgot to fix) had the applicant fill out the wrong form. Since the merchant for this particular form strictly prohibits entering leads yourself, I asked the woman to return to my site and fill in the correct form. Like that was really going to happen.=) Oh well, at least I had my first lead today. Maybe I am finally headed in the right direction.




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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

A Day to Remember

First, thank you Nikki and Burke for the vote of confidence. Yes, I am pretty hard on myself but only because I have high expectations. Maybe one day I will lighten up....right=)

February 15, 2006 will go down in the history books for the Business. PPC3 generated $109.20 in commissions today, my first $100+ gross day! Of course this is gross and not profit. I have no idea what the profit is because Overture is unbearably slow in reporting account activity. This was a breakthrough that I really needed. I felt like I was making no headway with all of the time I was putting in. This feels good=) Hopefully this activity isn't a fluke.

Overture is high maintenance. It isn't like Adwords where you can let it do it's own thing. You have to constantly check on Overture to make sure someone hasn't bumped you out of a top 5 position. I didn't realize this until today and it may be a contributing factor in PPC2's lack of leads. We will see tomorrow.

Potential PPC4 will stay direct-to-merchant for right now. It didn't generate any sales today and I agree with Burke, landing pages can be detrimental to sales. I may do a A/B test to see which is better since I could not do my test with PPC3.

With all of these programs running and having several ad accounts, things were getting confusing. I created a spreadsheet today that will track day-to-day profits and totals for the month. I feel like I finally walked out of the forest now that I can see how things are REALLY going. You may want to do something similar to keep track of your affiliate sites.




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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

A Better Day

Potential PPC4 made its first sale today, $13.00. The good and the bad. The good, 70% ROI on that program. The bad, 1/94 conversion rate. That is pitiful. The sale does make me lean toward creating a dedicated landing page for the product , however, how much better can the conversion rate get if I switch from direct-to-merchant? Will the conversion rate even improve or will it plummet? We will see what tomorrow brings. If tomorrow I have another sale, the decision will be a no-brainer. If not, then I will have to weigh my options.

HARD work with PPC2. Another major overhaul but with great results so far. I had to pause the campaign while construction took place but things are almost ready to get back underway. There are now 2 other lead products for people to choose from just in case they were looking for other options when they reach the original form. The design is much better, incorporates SSI (which I should have done from the beginning), and loads in a little over 7 seconds for a 56k modem. I REALLY hope this has been worth it.

Back to work. Until tomorrow.




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Monday, February 13, 2006

The Good, The Bad....

The good, I made the first sale with PPC3 today. The bad, it was at the lowest commission possible with this merchant - $6. I was expecting at least $36 per sale. I am seriously considering changing over to another merchant if tomorrow isn't better. Many of them pay better but I chose this merchant because their site seemed to be the most reliable when I was navigating it. We will see.

Choices. Potential PPC4 is getting traffic but no sales. The question is, do I make a landing page and test that to see if I make sales or do I let it go since direct to the merchant has not been fruitful yet? These are the questions.

PPC2.... This is the last ditch effort to make something out of the current debacle. I bought a domain name awhile back thinking that the current name of PPC2 may be region specific ( not the region I am promoting in). I am taking the necessary steps to shift over to the new domain name. This is the only thing I can think of that is keeping people from filling out the form. I have literally tried everything else I can imagine. If this does not work, then PPC2 is done. I say that but I know myself well enough to know that it won't be that easy to cut it off. Just call me Captain Ahab.




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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Back to Work

Finally, I have all of the product pages up and ads to them. The bad news is that the ads are in Overture for the moment. I have to bid much higher in Adwords so I have to be more selective than in Overture. But the ads are up and the keywords were approved for once=) Here's to PPC3!

There is somethine inherently wrong with my lead form. I have filled it out and it works but I need to test it on another computer. It doesn't make sense that I have not had a lead yet. I will have to dig into that this weekend.

I know what PPC4 will be but I have decided to test direct-to-merchant ads first to see if it is even a viable market. There are a lot of searches and few ads but I do not know if people buy this product. No sense making a landing page, creating images, sales copy, and buying a domain if no one buys this product. I may just throw together a quick ad campaign and test tonight...




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Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Get This...

First, I didn't forget you guys last night. I wrote my post and was promptly told that my blog "exhibited characteristics of a spam blog" and would be locked until further review. Thankfully someone real took a look at it and realized that I am not in the business of spam=)

Well, I get home and am set to do some real work. I have my list of tasks and just as I am about to get to them when the monitor goes black and the computer restarts. Ok, no big deal. Then it restarts again. And again....and again. I'm sure the computer is dead so when I somehow get into it again, I start trying to back everything up. It restarts again. Then dies. Won't start. Finally I give up and decide to get some dinner and watch a movie for the night. After the movie, I give it one last shot. It starts. I back up all of the essentials. I get on the blog and post. I don't know if the hard drive is just mad or if I have some monstrous virus but I learned my lesson. I will be backing EVERYTHING up once a week from now on. This was way to close.

Anyway, last night I finished the product pages for PPC3 and redesigned PPC2. PPC2 looks so much better its not even funny. PPC3 has 3 adgroups at the moment but I bid really low so no traffic yet. While the whole computer recitation was going on, I had a friend turn off my Overture account. PPC2's lead form doesn't get sent straight to the merchant, I have to fill in the info manually so if I were to get any leads while the computer was down, that would be lost money. I may just buy a new hard drive this weekend. I never really trusted this one much. Obstacles keep slowing me down.




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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Half Way Finished

PPC3 is half way finished with the overhaul. The new design is so much better, I can't wait to test it out. This first wave of pages will just be Test Group A. I will use them to refine my ads while I make Test Group B. From there, I will make duplicates of the most productive ads for each adgroup. Each of these ads will point to either the products' A version of the page or the B version. Adwords will be set to alternate between the two ads to make sure that each gets equal traffic. I'm excited=)

I continue to plug away with PPC2 and Overture. A friend of mine told me that his lead form has a 1/20 conversion rate. I have only had a few clicks so I will give it a couple days before I make changes to the ads to improve CTR.

PPC4 will get its start in the next few days.




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Thursday, February 02, 2006

Much Better Design

Using the competition as a guide, I redid the layout for PPC3. During the process, I created two versions of the new layout and both were more appealing than the narrative style in my opinion. I've decided to completely ditch the narrative pages and do the A/B split on the two new layout styles. On major plus of the new layout is that it is much easier to create as opposed to writing all about the product. This will help me create more product pages than I would have been able to do originally.

I know that I said I would hold off on any new projects but after getting trounced last month, I can't. I know of an area that would work well for a small project or two to earn a little cash on the side. So the break down: two big projects in PPC2 & 3 and one small project in PPC4.

The ax came down on the PPC program for original site #3 but I think the merchant would be good for SEO traffic. The site is semi-established so when I have time, I will get the merchant's links worked into the site.




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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

No Excuses

Earning last month were abysmal. Here's the break down.

Adsense: $82.07
Best month yet. This was the only shining light of the earnings for January.

PPC1
Earnings: $34.94
Expenses: $43.46
A rash of cancellations in the beginning of the month forced me into the red and made me stop the campaign after the sales stopped.

#3
Earnings: $2.66
Expenses: $15.23
I don't care where you are in the world, I know you can hear me bring the ax down on this one. This is the reason for my decision not to promote anything that doesn't pay at least $8/sale.

PPC2
Earnings: $0
Expenses: -$16.38
Saved by the Overture Coupon! Amazingly, I stayed in the black on this one because of that free coupon. I couldn't buy a click (literally) and ended up still having some credit left over.

$100/Day Challenge Breakdown:
Earnings: $37.60
Expenses: $58.69
Profit: $-21.09
In my calculation, I did not include the $16.38 I still have on the coupon since it was free. Like the title says I have no excuses. I slacked off and this is the result.

I have to congratulate Burke for his outstanding month. I'm going to have to hustle to catch up with the guy.




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