Chapter 13. Making Money with Your Site

If it’s not for sale on the Web, it’s probably not for sale at all. It’s no secret that the Internet is a global bazaar with more merchandise than a decade’s worth of garage sales. Surfers generate huge amounts of traffic hunting for Amazon coupons, discussing hot deals, and scouring eBay for bargains. So how can you get your share of Web capital?

One obvious option is to sell a real, tangible product. The Internet abounds with specialty shops hawking art, jewelry, and handmade goods. But even if you have a product ready to sell, you still need a few specialized tools to transform your corner of the Web into a bustling e-commerce storefront. For example, you’ll probably want a virtual shopping cart, which lets visitors collect the items they want to buy as they surf. And when they finally head for the checkout, you’ll need a secure way to accept their cash—usually by way of a credit card transaction. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to get both these features using PayPal’s merchant tools.

But even if you aren’t looking for a place to unload your hand-crafted fishbone pencils, your Web site can still help fatten your wallet. In fact, just about any Web site can become profitable, either by selling ad space or recommending other companies’ products. In this chapter, you’ll consider how you can use two of the Web’s most popular affiliate programs—Google AdWords and Amazon Associates—to collect some spare cash.


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