Can You Become Wealthy in Just a Few Years?

Can You Become Wealthy in Just a Few Years? post image

This week on the podcast, we’re inviting a guest who’s had an incredible amount of success building Amazon affiliate sites. In just a few short years out of his job, and focusing on his business, I think it’s fair to say he’s built himself meaningful wealth.

One thing that’s interesting about this space is that most of the people who are really doing well don’t want to talk  about it publicly. It’s easy to forget, with all the “success” narratives thrown our way everyday, that the vast majority of business success stories aren’t shared in the press or on social media. There are entire categories of the business world that actively work to keep those stories obscured and hidden.

In our entrepreneurial world, one of those categories is Amazon sellers (discussed on this episode of the podcast).

I’ve met lots of young people at our events making healthy five-figures a month incomes selling basic stuff on Amazon. Or referring traffic to Amazon. Do you think they want to come on the podcast and share their story? No way. Maybe in 5 years.

Last week I posted a conversation with Venkat Rao that’s partly about the concept of “power literacy.” It’s a complex topic, but I think one aspect of it can be captured in a rule of thumb:

Believe the walk, not the talk.

Are there ways you can observe what people, and businesses, are actually doing rather than hearing them say what they think they are doing? How can you focus on those things more regularly?

Screenshot of the EF marketplace in late Jan 2017.

Screenshot of the EF marketplace in late Jan 2017.

Now I’m no scientist, but a quick look at the Empire Flippers marketplace reveals that the top 11 sites (the first 11 that came up on my screen) are selling for an average price of $711,152.27.

The average start date of these businesses was 7/1/2014.

Over half of these businesses use Amazon as one of their monetization channels.

I do not currently know the sellers, or sites, behind these listings. But I have met many previous sellers in person (I am one myself, we reference a drop shipping site we sold for mid-five figures in this episode) and I can tell you this: you might be surprised by the average entrepreneur here.

They aren’t often folks who started with a ton of dough, or fancy degrees, or business pedigrees. Often, they are simply motivated people who went all in with their energy and effort when they saw — not merely heard about — an opportunity.

“Seeing” in this sense can often take months and months of focused work. It’s a of know-how that’s built from direct experience. I don’t believe you can learn this type of knowledge from a book. To understand these opportunities, you’d have to work at it for weeks and months, and for many of us, years. A long time for sure, but much less than a traditional corporate or academic career would ask of you (the structural reasons for this are discussed in this book, and here too).

At least in today’s market conditions, if you have the time and the work ethic to build these opportunities, there are investors lining up to purchase the assets from you. Of course, things change, but this type of knowledge can stay with you and evolve for a lifetime.

As I look at these listings, there’s a little site started in September 2014 that jumps out at me. The asking price is just over a half-million dollars. Now, if I had to guess, I’d say this isn’t this seller’s first business or website.

Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 10.02.19 PM

But I imagine the person who might have built it. Maybe they’ve built a few smaller sites in the past and wanted to up their game.

I picture someone young creating the type of wealth, in a few years, that might have taken their family an entire career or more.

They may have even done it in someplace new to them, in a rented Airbnb with friends or family, heading out after a days work to talk with others doing the same.

All with just a computer, vision, and work ethic.


PS, check out the podcast this Thursday morning, we’ll be deep diving into this topic.

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Published on 02.07.17
  • Ben Starr

    Another Amazon affiliate creeping out of the woodwork here. I think you’re spot on about people not talking about it so much but I think it’s because we are busy enough building more sites and growing our existing ones, it’s a very repeatable and scalable process. When you have something like that to invest your time and money into then there’s little motivation to start blogging about it, it would be an opportunity cost.

    With the emergence of reputable market places like Empire Flippers and a steady pool of buyers it’s quite possible to build up a portfolio of websites that are worth 7 figures at market value. Of course the higher priced websites are not the most liquid assets in the world though but that seems to be changing as time goes on. Whenever I’m building sites I’m not just thinking about the monthly income but also the asset value, which makes it such a great investment.

  • good to hear your perspective Ben, the returns you guys are making are insane relative to other investment’s i’ve looked into (and we’ve spent a lot of time looking) so it’s no wonder investors are lining up.

    I think it’s tough for enthusiasts of the business-blogging world (and I’m first in line) or I guess you could call it “the media” to remember that most of the action isn’t being shared for the exact reason you’re pointing out.

  • Josh Mitchy

    Fantastic episode, thanks guys! I have been a buyer on Empire flippers and am also building Amazon sites in a similar style to Kevin. There some positives and negatives I have come across in my relatively short time in this space. The main positive is when someone goes to amazon they can buy anything within 24 hours and you receive a commission. Last week I sold a $400 cooking pot and my site is definitely not in that niche :-) ! Opportunity exists but it is become more competitive and building high value sites means putting in a lot more work than it did 2 years ago. Especially if you are a sole entrepreneur with limited time and resources. If anyone wants an honest & independent guide to buying a site then I am happy to share my experiences.

  • Dan thanks for using us as an example here! Many of the seller we work with have “factories” where they produce site on a regular basis and sell on our marketplace. It’s great way to make a living.

  • I’m curious about a couple of things:

    1) They have a “content writer” who churns this stuff out. I assume this means they don’t actually obtain the items or know anything about them – they just make product reviews to unwitting purchasers who believe they are?

    2) They create their own fake networks – even you admitted it was considered rather “doubtful” by many people – to push up their links, again fooling people into thinking this is a reputable site doing real reviews. It is true that now the very large companies are following suit through their legitimate sites, but this has long been considered a scam and is regularly hunted down by Google, et al.

    I’m a bit surprised and disappointed you would decide to lionize this type of thing & associate it with TMBA. I’ve always listened to you guys with the feeling this was a place to learn how to work hard and move ahead, but little things here and there are making me start to question that.

  • Jeff while you are entitled to your opinion, calling these sites a “scam” is over stating the situation. Why is acquiring domains and rebuilding sites to point back to your own sites a scam? Why is posting content on items you don’t actually own unethical?

    This is simply the reality of the internet. Companies large and small engage in aggressive SEO tactics and build content merely for search engines. Does Google love, perhaps not, but it well within their guidelines and they have made fortune off the content these types of sites produce.

  • If they are claiming personal knowledge of something they do not have to make money, that is fraud.

    If they are tricking people into believing they are something they are not, that is fraud.

    You can talk to a lawyer about either of those. There are probably more than a economic reasons to be living where they are.

  • I have spoken to an attorney and is NOT illegal. This is NOT fraud. Unless you can prove otherwise, please do not give legal advice. Scare tactics like this are uncouth.

    These sites are not claiming personal knowledge. They are simply reviewing the features and benefits of items readily available on Amazon.

  • You can do as you like, Joseph. I’m asking Dan if this is the type of thing they feel they want to be associated with.

  • Says the man behind a mask in his profile photo, lol.

  • jimihendrix

    Hi Josh, I am interested, how can I contact you?

  • Josh Mitchy

    Josh Mitchy on FB
    @Joshy_Mitchy on Twitter

  • Pedro

    Hey guys, thank you for this episode. You guys encouraged me to jump in as a part time entrepreneur. I just bought my first Amazon affiliate site!

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