Back To Basics – What Is Internet Marketing

Posted In: General Chat 

I’ve been very slack on my blog posts recently, the month of July seems to have passed me by completely…blog post wise anyway. Back in the “real world” I’ve been busy going to relatives birthdays, going on a mountain walk (note I didn’t say walkS….1 was more than enough), and in 6 days I’m going to Headingley in Leeds to watch day 5 of the Ashes test match between England & Australia. So despite going easy on the Internet stuff, I’ve been having a good time which I suppose is the reason we all decided to become Internet Marketing people.

Anyway, back to business.

It’s come to my attention that a lot of the content I’ve been posting on here for the past 3 years has been going over a lot of peoples heads. So I’m going to go back to basics with this post, and just give you an idea of how to get started in Internet Marketing and what to look out for along the way.

If you already know this stuff I apologize, but in the long run this post should help more people keep up with some of the more advanced things I have written about in the past, and that I plan to write about in the future so bare with me.

Getting Started

The first thing you need to grasp is an understanding of what Internet Marketing is all about, if we are to break it down into its simplest form, it’s about making money by selling things on the Internet both directly, and indirectly.

So you need to decide what you are going to sell, here are the options for you:

1. Create your own product/service and sell directly to customers

Examples of my own: D9 Hosting, Boomerang List Builder

2. Sell other peoples products that come with resale, or private label rights

Examples of my own: El Passo Software, El Passo Books

3. Promote other peoples products as an affiliate (Earn commission for any items you sell)

Examples of my own: DLGuard Review, Resell Rights Fortune Review

4. Create a content site and generate income from advertising

Examples of my own: Tattoo Intel

Each of the above have their advantages and disadvantages. So I’m now going to give you a quick run down of the above points and hopefully make everything a bit clearer for you.

Option1: Create Your Own Product

Creating your own product CAN be a big money maker – it might not be, but if you target the right niche and create the right product then the potential is huge.

Take D9 Hosting as an example, I created it back in 2007 with my business partner Paula Brett when we saw a gap in the hosting market, as far as we could tell there was no affordable, reliable web host out there that knew Internet Marketing like we did – I’m not being big headed there either, we have over 10 years experience between us and I genuinely feel you’d be hard pushed to find a more marketer friendly web host.

So to cut a long story short, we created D9 Hosting, which is now hosting thousands of websites for clients all over the world, the income generated through D9 provides a full time wage for both myself and Paula – all because we saw a gap in a market and created a service to fill that void.

I’m using the hosting market as an example but you can use anything you have an interest in, lets say for example that you enjoy mountain walks. I don’t have any numbers but I’d imagine there’s a lot of people interested in mountain walking that are looking for the best routes and secret tracks up xyz mountain, so why not compile an eBook showing the best routes to take up xyz mountain and sell it to amateur mountaineers like myself!

That may not be the best example, I have no idea what the mountaineers niche is like, but I would have certainly loved a guide I could have used last week, it might have stopped us going up the wrong path and adding an extra 3 miles to our journey 🙁

Me Getting Lost

But hopefully you can see what I’m getting at, if you can find a gap in a market then creating your own product to plug that gap can be very lucrative.

What sort of product could you create?

1. An eBook

2. Some software

3. Training course

4. Video guides

5. A service

6. A membership site

7. And anything else you can think of!

Advantages of creating your own product:

1. Keep 100% of the sales generated

2. If you tap into the right market income potential is huge

3. Have total control over the product you are selling

Disadvantages of creating your own product:

1. Depending on the type of product you create, the costs could be high

2. You may target the wrong niche/market and your product may not sell

3. Can be disheartening to see that people don’t actually like your product (It happens!)


Operation eBook – How To Create Your 1st eBook

Option 2: Sell Products With Resale/PLR Rights

This is how many of us; myself included, got into Internet Marketing. Back when I first started Marketing the first thing I sold was a collection of eBooks with resale rights that I purchased from John Thornhill. I sold these on eBay and made around £90 (about $160) each week, which for a teenager was pretty good going!

Back then, the “Resell Rights” market was still very much in it’s infancy, the only products with resale rights you could get your hands on were eBooks, nowadays there are tons of top quality items out there that come with either resale, or private label rights including videos, training courses, software products and so on.

If you buy the resale rights for these items, it means you are able to sell on the items as many times as you like, keeping all of the profits for yourself. With Private Label Rights (PLR) products you can even alter the items and pass yourself off as the author of the product!

I actually still have my very first marketing website online, El Passo Books, and it still makes a few sales every week to this day. All the products you see on the site come with resale rights, in total I paid around £30 for the website and all of the eBooks you can see on it, so when you consider the main package sells for £12.99 each time you can see it has been a wise investment!

Advantages of selling items with resale rights:

1. Usually dead cheap to purchase

2. Can sell them multiple times and keep the profit

3. Pass PLR products off as your own (Also saves time)

Disadvantages of selling items with resale rights:

1. Lots of other people could be selling the same product as you

2. Sometimes items can be sold very cheaply and are devalued


John Thornhill’s Ready To Go eBook Business

PLR Monthly

Option 3: Promote Products As An Affiliate

This is personally my favorite method, as once I’ve set an affiliate promotion up I can pretty much sit back and forget about it. All I need to do is drive customers to the products sales page and watch the commission come in.

I’m sure you all know what an affiliate link looks like, it’s usually something along the lines of:

If someone were to click on that affiliate link, and then purchase something off I would earn a commission.

I wouldn’t have to deliver the product to the customer, and I wouldn’t have to provide them with the support!

Some of my most profitable ventures are affiliate websites, and I do plan to write an eBook (option 1!) on the subject so keep your eyes open for that.

If you are starting out and don’t have much startup capital available to you then I’d strongly recommend going for this method. It can be set up for free and even if you don’t make a sale you won’t have lost out financially, and you’ll have gained some valuable experience from the project.

Adavntages of promoting products as an affiliate:

1. No customer service to provide

2. No startup costs (in some cases)

3. If you target the right product it’s easy money

Disadvantages of promoting products as an affiliate

1…..I can’t really think of any to be honest!


How I Dominated Google For Resell Rights Fortune

How I Dominated Google For John Thornhill Coaching

Option 4: Create Content Site & Profit Through Advertising

I’ve actually tried this a few times, but to be honest unless you have a really high traffic website you’d be better off sticking to another method.

The idea is to get people to your website by providing them with quality information that they are looking for, you’d then place relevant adverts on that website in the hope that people would click on the adverts and make a purchase. An example site of mine that uses this strategy is Tattoo Intel, it’s a site that provides all sorts of information on tattoos, you’ll also be able to see banner adverts on the page.

I make a few sales from these but nothing like I do from the other sites, if I were able to generate more traffic to the site then I dare say it would be more worthwhile, however at present it isn’t really a viable option for me when the other methods are bringing in more money with less work needed on my part.

Advantages of content sites with advertising

1. No customer service to provide

2. Cheap to setup, only a domain name and hosting needed

Disadvantages of content sites with advertising

1. Need to generate a lot of traffic to see decent results

2. Sites need updating quite often to keep people coming back for more

So there you have it, a brief overview of the main methods Internet Marketers use to make money online. It’s a very broad overview but it should give you a basic understanding of everything and help you understand what I’m talking about in some of my more advanced blog posts!

If you are just starting out, what I’d personally advise you to do is read through this post a couple of times, then decide which plan of action is for you. When you’ve done that, write down what you are going to try and do and do it. Don’t worry if you fail, you won’t know unless you try!

As always thanks for reading and let me know if you have any questions.



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19 Responses to “Back To Basics – What Is Internet Marketing”
  1. Pat Graham says:

    Wow, Dan…what a terrific post. I learned a lot and remembered some stuff I’d forgotten. This might be the best post I’ve ever read from you…clear, informative and full of honest advice. Great Job!

    Pat Graham

  2. The disadvantages of promoting products as an affiliate would be, in my opinion, I could not advertise my affiliate URL on pay-per-click. The best thing for me to do, would be,
    to make a squeeze page and capture the prospects name and e-mail address. This is one way to build my list, right.

    • Dan (el_passo) says:

      Good point Hermann, I haven’t ever used PPC but as far as I know you can’t use a direct affiliate link, maybe someone can clarify this?

      I’m not sure if they’d let you link directly to a squeeze page either, isn’t there page scores and things to consider, especially with Google Adwords?

  3. Andy Burton says:

    Good post Dan, As you know I started back Internet Marketing fairly recently, I could have done with a refresher course and you provided it, thanks for that.
    Thought you might have mentioned building a mailing list though, without a list who can you sell to?
    regards Andy

    • Dan (el_passo) says:

      I did actually forget about the mailing lists, I guess that would come under the “traffic generation” heading. Maybe I need to do another post next week on traffic generation techniques!

      I actually prefer selling to prospects indirectly through my affiliate sites, I get all traffic from the search engines.

      It brings in a steady amount of sales, rather than loads of sales when you send a mailing to your list, and then nothing in the days/weeks inbetween mails.

  4. Ed says:

    Hi Dan,

    The route i am going to be taking besides my own products are PLR and resale rights products and butterfly marketing sites, via ye ole help of messers Thornhill on masterclass and beyond!


  5. Donald says:

    Hi Dan,
    Excellent blog, as usual. I am still a long way behind. I need to get my ar.. in gear. I do think affiliate is the way to go when short of funding. I will be visitng your site more often as it is very informative.
    Good luck with the ashes, enjoy your day.


  6. Barry Wells says:

    Hi Dan, good clear advice, thanks.

    I’ve taken a leaf out of your book Dan and have created my very own ebook. It’s about easing the finacial squeeze that most people are under at the moment. It shows you how to research the market on ebay, along with setting up a shop, sourcing the products to sell from it, tips and techniques for successful listing.

    Why am i telling you about it? I wanted you to know that i’ve taken action Dan. It has now gone live and you can find it at:

    Thanks again for all the help and encouragement Dan, you’re a TOP man.

    Respect & Regards,

  7. I am still learning nad one very important item I can see which I have learned is shorten the URL which I did using tinyurl and recently
    BUt my question is how does one clock the affiliate link cannot seem to get my head around that one… googled it and just got more confused

  8. Jim says:

    Been looking for a home business for three years now, have not found anything, I have no experience on the internet or how to go about it, want to earn some extra income, have joined a couple and never made a dime, dishnetwork,
    Website center, have 8 websites up and running, for two months, no sales, and
    One sale in two months, $16.00. Fustrated, and don’t know what to do. Have a paypal account, and want to meet some honest people who really do make money on the net, so many scams, I am sick and tired of all the hype, the big houses, cars, and fake generated income statements, is there really a way to make it on line. JC

  9. Jim says:

    I don’t understand a lot of this stuff and would be willing to pay someone to direct me, step by step and get a few websites up and running, I have plenty of time on my hands, retired-semi, and would really get excieted if I saw something that really worked. I would put 100% into it.