Many top gurus promoted mini-sites as the cheapest and easiest way to make a profit from an affiliate program.
Nevertheless, in spite of good intentions, it's well known that true-lasting success with the search engines, (Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc.) is through a Theme-Based Keyword Focused Content site; which beats a mini-site and Door-way pages combined, anytime.
That is because a mini-site is not a viable concept for the average webmaster or affiliate, selling products of their own - or for a merchant partner. Lets look at these concepts.
What is a Theme-Based Keyword Focused Content Site?
What is is a Mini-Site? And,
What is a Gateway Page?
A theme-based keyword focused content site, is based upon a theme where every page focuses upon a single topic that is related to the theme. For example?
Let us say that your theme is soccer. Then, the theme-base related web pages will be about soccer and would include ?
MLS Soccer ? the soccer professional league in USA
FIFA ? the international soccer federation
World Cup ? Soccer's international world tournament
The Euro Cup ? European soccer's tournament
Copa America ? Latin America soccer's tournament
Each of the above will be a specific topic, and each topical page is a "Keyword Content Focused Page. A theme-based site could grow well over 200 pages, each on a different topic, all related to the site's central theme (soccer). The sum total of all the information forms the content of your site.
Best of all, a tightly focused theme-base site scores well at the search engines for hundreds of soccer-related keywords that will indefinitely drive unlimited targeted traffic to your theme site, selling unlimited soccer related products.
On the other hand, Mini-Sites are small Affiliate sites that focus on selling a single product. It could be a short as one or two pages, and as long as 20 pages. It is composed entirely of a powerful sales letter that drives a visitor to a merchant's site.
Although, a mini-site is a well intended concept it's not a viable alternative for most products.. Here are a few of the drawbacks.
1. Hard to build traffic. Because they don't do well on the search engines. They aren't built to rank highly on the search engines, or to draw traffic from the most flexible directories.
2. No Credibility. Does not establish credibility in you or your product. A mini-site is a one time straight pitch sales copy; and, no one buys from a straight pitch Web site unless they previously have known, respect, and trust, a well-known authority related to the site's product.
3. No Diversification. If your mini-site sales copy fails to convert your prospect into a buyer, you've most likely lost that visitor for good.
In comparison, the Theme-Based Content Site offers greater opportunities for Affiliate and Webmasters.
The theme-based content site is full of content-rich pages designed to attain a high search engine ranking. On the merits of their valuable content they will draw substantial traffic from the Directories.
They are great credibility builders because they're PREselling rather than hard selling.
Each page of a theme-based site may have from 5 and up to 10 links to merchants partner's sites for different related products..
Now, let us compare a mini-site that is about a certain manufacturer's soccer balls, versus a theme-based content site that is all about soccer.
A visitor to a mini-site falls within two categories ?
(S)he doesn't need new soccer balls
While they may not need new soccer balls, they may need soccer shoes, soccer stockings, a sport's bag, soccer books, and tapes; maybe even a trip to a soccer camp, or travel arrangements to international soccer events, including hotel and transportation.
- (S)he needs new soccer balls
Now, suppose your visitor, upon reading your sales pitch for soccer balls says ?. "No ? I've just got a new ball", and then returns to the main page for more articles; do you think that placing the same link to those balls in the next article of your mini-site is going to be any more effective? No --- your visitor still recently bought a new soccer ball.
Nevertheless, because of the great content with in-context links on your theme-based site, the prospect may develop an interest on soccer related books, products, or services, etc.
The Theme-Based Sites vs. Gateway Pages
Gateway pages are trick sites used to trick the search engines. Generally, low-value pages that score well with the engines but fail to deliver good content. They may get the visitor, but fail to get the click through, the purchase, and the repeat business.
Tricks such as invisible links, lead search engines spiders through a site. Though they initially work, success is of short duration with devastating side effects, such as the visitor disdain, and getting band by the search engines.
A Theme-Based site, on the other hand, will OVER-deliver great content while playing it fair and safe with the search engines by leading their spiders reliably through your site. Their visible links do as good as the Doorway pages hidden links, and will never fade in effectiveness. That is because you are creating real content and not spider bait!
The Theme-Based approach is 100% different. First, you find a theme you know and love, with lots of profitable keywords. Second, research hundreds of profitable keywords (greater demand and less supply) related to your products or services. Third, you build a theme-base content site with great content, that ranks high on the search engines, delivers unlimited PREsold targeted traffic, and gets the click-through to your selling site, or a merchant's site.
As you can see?. The theme-based content focused site wins over a mini-site or gateway pages anytime. The secret of their successful high ranking on the search engines, is that each page is build around a highly profitable keyword content focused page.
The process may seem long, complex and tedious; and, indeed, it could be. Nevertheless, with the right guidance and tools it's easier than you think. In fact the entire process could be automated.
Copyright 2004 Internet Business Automation
About The Author
Charles Longsworth, Ph.D. An online expert consultant on internet business marketing automation systems that really works. For FREE consultation contact him at http://www.internet-business-automation.com/content. Subscribe to "Automation Gazette" his official voice since 2000 at http://www.internet-business-automation.com/subscribe. 6 FREE Subscription Bonus when you join.