July 24, 2008

Welcome to the darkside

Filed under: Internet,Making money — Joe Brewer @ 5:29 pm

Recently, I’ve been looking for a way to increase the chances of achieving my new years resolution to be able to start paying my mortgage each month from profits made by various web sites.  At the moment it’s all pretty lame – I’m getting about $100 a month on a good month, not nearly enough for one mortgage payment.

But there’s hope on the horizon – For the last couple of months I’ve been a member of the forums over at the awesome which has a private forum for discussing ways of making a ton of cash using various questionable and devious methods.  I’ve been reading and learning,  and I’ve also been doing the most important thing, and that is doing stuff. None of this is worth anything if you dont take any action.

In the last few days Quadzilla has announced the blackhat conference of the year: SEOktoberfest.  This is going to be the mother of search engine conferences….  Unfortunately for me, the price tag of €5000 is a little high at the moment, but, hey, there is a chance of getting picked in the draw for the one free ‘golden’ ticket.

DISCLAIMER: If I do win, my girlfriend has made me promise not to pay too much attention to the 6 German playboy playmates that will be sprinkled throughout the conference.

May 12, 2008

Optimising your ebay affiliate profits

Filed under: Internet,Making money,PHP and MySQL — Joe Brewer @ 6:51 pm

A few months ago I came across phpBay – a WordPress plugin and API that integrates ebay listings easily into your website. When a user clicks on a product and places a winning bid, you receive a commission from Ebay.

One feature that I found that was missing was being able to show users local auction listings, for example show people from America US listings or people from the England UK listings. However this is now possible to do with my country class, and once installed will enable you to maximise your affiliate profits. To acomplish this you will need to purchase the web lookup service from MaxMind. The class can be downloaded here.

To make this work with wordpress, simply unpack country.php and geo.php, edit the geo.php so that it contains the key that you receive from MaxMind and upload the files to wp-content/plugins/phpBay/ and the phpBay plugin will take care of the rest. This will work on version 3.0 of phpBay

If you need to get this working on a non wordpress site using the API, then you will just need the country.php which contains the country class. To see it working, see my site DVD For A Dollar. Here is how I accomplished the country detection on that site.

At the top of each file I start a session using session_start() so that if a user browses more than one page of a site then it will be able to retreive the country from MaxMind once and then use it on all subsequent pages. Then I use the following code to initiate the class and retreive the country.


  1. include( ‘country.php’ );
  2. $ebayCountry = new country();
  4. if ( !isset( $_SESSION[‘country’] ) )
  5. {
  6. // replace the ‘x’s on the next line with your MaxMind key
  7. $ebayCountry->licenseKey = "xxxxxxxx";
  8. $ebayCountry->getCountryFromWeb();
  10. $_SESSION[‘country’] = $ebayCountry->ISO;
  11. } else
  12. {
  13. $ebayCountry->ISO = $_SESSION[‘country’];
  14. $ebayCountry->setReturnArray();
  15. }


Now you can initiate the phpBay class and set the country parameters like this:


  1. $ebay = new ebay();
  3. $ebay->eb_siteId = $ebayCountry->ReturnArray[ "siteId" ];
  4. $ebay->eb_language = $ebayCountry->ReturnArray[ "language" ];

If you want a combo box that displays a list of countries that defaults to the local ebay like the one on DVD For A Dollar, place the following code above the code that checks if the country session variable has been set:


  1. if ( isset( $_POST[‘country’] ) && strlen( $_POST[‘country’] ) == 2 )
  2. $_SESSION[‘country’] = $_POST[‘country’];

Here is the code that draws the combo box itself:


  1. function DrawCountryCombo() {
  2. $Countries = array(    "US" => "US Auctions",
  3. "AU" => "Australian Auctions",
  4. "AT" => "Austrian Auctions",
  5. "BE" => "Belgian Auctions",
  6. "CA" => "Canadian Auctions",
  7. "FR" => "French Auctions",
  8. "DE" => "German Auctions",
  9. "HK" => "Hong Kong Auctions",
  10. "IN" => "Indian Auctions",
  11. "IE" => "Irish Auctions",
  12. "IT" => "Italian Auctions",
  13. "NL" => "Dutch Auctions",
  14. "PL" => "Polish Auctions",
  15. "SG" => "Singapore Auctions",
  16. "ES" => "Spanish Auctions",
  17. "CH" => "Swiss Auctions",
  18. "GB" => "UK Auctions"
  19. );
  21. $form = ‘<form method="POST" action="">’ . "\r\n";
  22. $form .= ‘<select onchange="javascript:submit();" id="countrycombo" name="country">’ .
  24. "\r\n";
  26. foreach( $Countries AS $Key => $Value )
  27. {
  28. $form .= ‘<option’;
  29. $form .= ($_SESSION[‘country’] == $Key) ? ‘ selected’ : ;
  30. $form .= ‘ value="’ . $Key . ‘">’ . $Value . ‘</option>’ . "\r\n";
  31. }
  33. $form .= ‘</select>’ . "\r\n" . ‘</form>’ . "\r\n";
  34. return $form;
  35. }

To draw the combo box, simply use the following code:


  1. echo DrawCountryCombo();

And that’s all there is to adding country detection to your ebay affiliate sites. Huge thanks to Wade who wrote the phpbay class for his support with this project.

If you find this code useful, feel free to buy me a beer.

March 12, 2008

Making money online

Filed under: Internet,Making money — Joe Brewer @ 6:06 pm

So, after a week of messing around with OpenX (renamed from OpenAds), and getting excited about learning SQL properly (more about that in a later blog post) I have finally put some ads up. I’ve abandoned the OpenX idea for the time being as it has a more complicated interface than I realised.

My first thoughts on choosing ads was to get as many displayed as possible, but I’ve since realised that it is probably a better idea to choose ads that are more in line with the different niches and products that I actually use myself.

Here are my current advertisers:

Hypnosis Downloads
This company is run by Uncommon Knowledge, a company that specialises in training therapists in the use of hypnosis. I trained with them in 2002 and can honestly say it was a life changing experience. I gained so much confidence and so many amazing friends in the process, plus it has allowed me to help alot of people less fortunate than myself. Hypnosis Downloads has the largest inventory of downloadable hypnosis mp3 files on the net.

What’s not to say about Godaddy? One of the biggest domain registrars on the net. I’m not sure about their hosting as I’ve never tried it, but as a registrar they are excellent in my experience.

Text Link Ads
I’ve been using Text Link Ads on my blog for quite a while now and think it’s an excellent way to monitize a blog. After installing the ad code on your site, there’s nothing much else to it except letting the dollars flow in!

So there we have it. I’m going to implement OpenX so that I can track the ads better, and try some different advertisers but I’m on my way to making a few more dollars now.

March 2, 2008

New month, new start

Filed under: General,Internet — Joe Brewer @ 6:16 pm

March is marking the beginings of some changes around here. A change of the default wordpress theme has been well overdue, despite the fact that the default theme is pretty hideous, it doesnt do any good to help make new readers stay for a bit. I still need to do a bit of customisation, but I think it’s looking a lot better than it did.

Since my online networking efforts have started to pay off a bit (I’ve have a 20% increase in traffic in the last few weeks), I’ve decided to have a go at making some money on this blog and documenting my progress. Look out for some ads on the right sometime soon.

February 11, 2008

2008 Godaddy discount coupon codes

Filed under: Domains,Internet — Joe Brewer @ 6:33 pm

Being a self confessed domain addict, I am always after discounts from my favourite domain registrar – GoDaddy. Although I have heard many nightmare stories about their hosting, I haven’t heard anything bad about their domain registrar offerings. I register most of my domains through GoDaddy.

Do be careful about where you go to lookup wheather your potential new domain is available though, as some whois services have been known to register domain names that have been checked to see whether they were available. I am currently using to research new domain names and have never had a problem.

I have decided to keep a list of current godaddy discount coupon code for everyone to benefit from. See my post on how to get domain privacy for free for extra savings.

OYH3 or CJC695DOM for $6.95 .COM registrations, transfers and renewals

OYH1 or CJCSAVE10 for 10% off any order

CJCONEOFF for $1 off any order

OYH2 or CJCSAVE for $5 off your order of $30 or more (great for bulk order)

CJCTENOFF for $10 off your order of $50 or more (great for bulk order)

CJCDEAL for 15% off your order of $75 or more (great for bulk order)

CJCDEAL17 for $20 off your order of $100 or more (great for bulk order)

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