My intention was to write a very negative review about making money on line with Yahoo Answers. But something happened tonight, 13th July 2013: I made my first sale ever as an affiliate and earned $65! Guess where the sale came from? If you replied ‘Yahoo Answers’, you guessed correctly. Of course, I am totally thrilled, because I was starting to believe that to make money on line, Yahoo Answers empowered or otherwise, is nothing but a myth. Could it be that everyone saying otherwise was just trying to pitch me a copy of Market Samurai to play with? Making $65 after three weeks with about forty questions answered is not that bad. Keep in mind that the questions should stay there for a long time. I get new clicks every day from many of my answers. The sale was from a question I answered three weeks ago. Every answer I left works like a mini-money-earning site that may keep making me money for years to come. I still have a lot to learn about search engine optimization, advertising and marketing. By using a few of the ideas that are running through my head, I may be able to get many more sales soon, so it is time to have a closer look at this method used to make money on line. Yahoo answers is the largest user driven question and answer community on the Internet. It does not take a genius to figure out that the place can be a gold mine for any Internet marketer. As I want to employ only white hat (ethical, legal, honest) methods to make money on line, Yahoo Answers posed a serious dilemma to me. Would I be breaking their rules, if I post my links on their site? Would I be wasting my time by working on my contributions and risk seeing them deleted or getting banned? I read Yahoo Answers’ Community Guidelines and happily found out this:
Yahoo! Answers is a place to gain knowledge, not customers, page views, or dates. If you have years of experience in something, have a special hobby, own your own business, or if you are a knowledge partner, it’s OK to accompany a good, on-topic answer with a link to your website, blog, or email to offer more information. However, it is not OK to post links that are unrelated to the topic or are clearly meant only to solicit others for personal and financial gain. Also prohibited are solicitations like “Will you add me as a contact?” or propositioning people.
‘Cool,’ I thought! If I have my own business, it is OK to accompany a good, on-topic answer with a link to my Web site. That is exactly what I needed to hear, because my idea to make money on Yahoo Answers was precisely that of using inbound marketing, but on a microscopic scale. Inbound marketing, is the future of on line ecommerce. Basically, it is all about converting visitors of a Web site to fans of a brand, instead of converting them directly to customers. As far as Yahoo Answers goes, this means staying on topic, providing personalized answers, being courteous, adding valuable information and trying to help the asker as much as possible. Thus, I would be providing a service for askers by giving them the information that they need; for Yahoo who would get valuable free content for their community and for my site with a sweet link. The idea is not to convert each asker into a fan of the site one at a time. Each question can receive multiple answers and it is up to the asker to choose the best one. Once he or she picks my reply, I can do some SEO to the question Web page. All people searching with Google or using the Yahoo Answers search engine directly will find the page and also become fans of my business. Sounds perfect, but, sadly, it is not.
Yahoo leave the moderation of their site to a bunch of kids and middle aged frustrated geeks. Here is the forum where they get together to do their ‘witchcraft’. These poor folks are sad unhappy people, either kids with parents who do not let them date the little girl they like at school, or bald forty year olds working at McDonalds with no prospects in life. Yahoo Answers became, for these people, the only way in which they can establish authority over other human beings. As such, rather than spending their precious time on this world trying to build a better future for themselves and their families, they spend it building self-esteem by ‘gulping’ spammers on Yahoo Answers. ‘Gulping’ is the word they use to describe the act of deleting a user’s account. Mine is no speculation. Legitimate users like me, who comply with Yahoo’s terms as listed above, ask what they did wrong, after they find out that their account got gulped, and this is the typical reply which they receive: ‘What’s wrong with you?! You are trying to earn some cash! If you want to make money on line, Yahoo Answers is not the place for you.’ In other words, the issue is not the content being spam or whether it breaks Yahoo’s rules or not. The problem is that we are trying to make money on line. The Witch Hunters are not smart enough to earn an on line income themselves. They are forced to work at McDonalds from nine to five taking orders from some guy who is twenty years younger than they are. So to give their own self-esteem a boost, they block us from making an honest living on line. It is what I call a ‘loser’s philosophy’. They live their lives in a much miserable fashion, so everybody else has to do the same, in order for them to feel happy. These demented people consider ANYTHING spam. As an extreme example, the other day a girl with a five year old account replied to some questions on acne scars. She suggested to the askers to request their doctors to give them some riboflavin supplements. One of the kids (I hope it was a kid, at least) reported her for being a spammer because she was pitching her product (riboflavin). Exactly! The kid thought that riboflavin was her own brand so the poor girl lost her account and all her five year old questions and answers were deleted at a go. Mmmmh…I wonder if I can find some Vitamin B to promote on Clickbank and what its gravity might be!? :/
You may be wondering where is the real paid Yahoo staff. They don’t do anything. The moderation is left entirely to the Witch Hunters although Yahoo do provide an ‘appeal form’. Theoretically their staff should review these appeals but they do not, and, as a consequence, this is what the Witch Hunters manage to achieve:
|They do a disservice to the marketer because he will no longer be able to sell his product to the Yahoo Answers community|
|They do a disservice to the asker or other people who have the same problem and could have found the answer easily with a Google or Yahoo search|
|They do a disservice to Yahoo because they have impoverished their site by removing high value content which could have earned them money|
|They do a disservice to themselves by wasting their time making other people’s lives miserable when they could have done something to improve their own lifestyle instead|
As a side note, possibly some of you may think of me badly, because I have been extremely mean with the Yahoo moderators, some of whom are young teens. I could have toned down my thoughts on these folks, but I promised to be honest with you, guys. The truth is that I have absolutely no sympathy and no tolerance for people of any age who are unable to do anything positive for themselves AND who find consolation for their own misery by causing harm to other people’s legitimate businesses. I am also aware that they might be reading this. :/ I am willing to take that risk. Let them do their thing with me, provided they manage to find my account. Yahoo Answers is certainly not going to be my main income stream and should not be anyone else’s either.
So to cut it short, making money on the Internet with Yahoo Answers is possible. Besides the sale I made, I got like over a 100 clicks on my page, since I have joined four weeks ago. However, it is definitely a gamble. One invests one’s time building up a reputation and providing quality Answers. Then, one day if one gets under the radar of the Witch Hunters, everything is lost. Is it still worth a shot? Decide for yourselves. The potential to make money on line with Yahoo Answers is certainly there. If you decide to give it a go here is how I do it…