One thing's for sure...
When you find the right virtual assistant - you'll want to give them as much work as possible!
It's addictive. Just ask Dom, he's got a few working on his portfolio of sites right now.
Beyond what Dom wrote about hiring your first VA, I wanted to lay out a few tasks a VA could fulfill for you that are specific to building Amazon affiliate sites.
These tasks go from WordPress, SERP branding, creating images, and more!
I put together a table of contents for you below, just in case you wanted to jump ahead and get some more details on that specific task.
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1) Update Your Editorial Calendar
If you're not building an editorial calendar - you should be! It helps you stay on track with upcoming articles and really plan out the growth of your site in terms of producing content.
Trello is a free tool we use to keep track of our own editorial calendars and to be honest, we don't love it. But it works none the less. We've found that updating it constantly can be a bit of a pain.
This is a simple task any VA can do and is especially helpful when you've got content planned for months and miss one or two blog posts, then have to shuffle everything down.
2) Optimize Your WordPress Post
Hire a VA to optimize your postings by creating posts and uploading the content, making sure the right title tags are in place and ensuring the categories are correct.
This does contain a few parts but grouping small tasks together is a fine art, you don't want to overwhelm your new VA if they aren't experienced with WordPress.
3) Optimize Your Meta Descriptions
I like having a virtual assistant collect all the bolded words that appear in the SERP that I'm targeting and then using as many of them into my meta description as possible.
This helps ensure you have the best chance of writing an attractive description. Meta descriptions are in no-way necessary, but this is just extra padding to your on-page SEO efforts. Don't forget to add a call-to-action as well!
4) Optimize Your Silo Strength
Depending on how you've laid out your site so far, you might want to tighten your silo's by making sure you only link to other articles in the silo and none outside.
This is quite tough to do but in the true definition of a silo, it has to happen.
Remember having a proper silo structure isn't necessary and a loose one can be better than no attempt, but you can always tighten them up by making sure all the posts in the silo link together and especially every supporting article points to your pillar post.
5) Researching Google Search Console Queries
Every 28 days your Google Search Console data will reset and one task your VA can do for you is collect the queries your site shows up for.
Organize them by descending order of impressions and then upload those search queries into your keyword tool and see what they're monthly searches are and the difficulty of the keyword. This can help you amp up your current content by answering more questions within the topic.
6) Insert Amazon Links
Some of the plugins allow for your VA to implement the links without logging into your Amazon account and that's a big bonus for privacy. Have your VA insert these links when optimizing your blog posts.
7) Product Selection for Product Roundup Posts
Tracking down the best products to review can be quite time consuming. If you're setting up your articles in a revenue-oriented manner, as Alejandro wrote about, then match the 5 or so products to specific keywords. For example, matching up the "best dog collar for small breeds" and then also the "best dog collar for large breeds" - assuming there's search volume for these.
It's just another task your VA can handle for you, but make sure you've got specific guidelines for them to follow so they aren't just finding random products and it really is the best for that specific thing. Amasuite's search analyzer works particularly well for this. Read our review of the tool here.
8) Add Additional External Links For Outreach
For your bigger informational pieces of content, you might have some extra room to add in or replace a few external links.
Think of it as an evergreen piece of content that you'll constantly be promoting because there will be small changes here and there. All in the benefit of your reader.
Link out to small bloggers where you know you'll be able to grab their attention and start a bit of a relationship. We lay out this process in our 'first 50 backlinks' guide.
9) Check Keyword Density of Competitors
You can further optimize your post by having your VA gather up the most used keywords in your competitor's articles. This something we call extra mile SEO and it's what you do when you are close to meeting your goals but need that little push to get your rankings up higher.
10) Stealing & Organizing Your Competitors Keywords
You want that low hanging fruit right?
Well get your VA to head over to SEMrush or Ahrefs and have them collect all the low competition keywords that your competitors are ranking for. Better yet, have them filter only by commercial keywords.
You'll often find high volume-low competition information keywords as well, which all the better.
11) Gather Emails from Mention Reports
Google alerts will do this too but it's just not as good as a paid solution.
If you are in the dog niche, then tracking something like "dog leash" or "best dog leash" would be a good idea for you to implement in your outreach and to keep track of competitors.
Learn more about this strategy of using mentions for outreach.
12) Add Star Ratings To Your SERP Results
This isn't something we haven't implemented ourselves, but it's something we'd like to.
You might notice local businesses having star ratings next to their link in the SERPs. But did you know that you can add these into your reviews as well?
It works especially well for single product reviews but overall it can be added to any commercial content. Here's a guide on implementing these ratings for your post.
13) Research Experts for Roundups & Top Lists
Expert round ups and top lists can be a pain to put together.
You need to collect relevant influencers emails, possibly create an award badge, reach out to them using Gmass or Mailshake and then gather up their responses. The majority of this can be handled by a VA because it can be time consuming.
14) Research Article Outlines
Depending on the way you outsource articles, many writers prefer at least an outline.
Outlines take time to make and they are just one part of your SOP.
If you're fairly familiar with your niche, this might be something you can begin outsourcing. It helps to have a structure in place though. For example you could have a research structure for a whole set of articles like "best dog collar for small dogs" and then the same research SOP for "best dog collar for medium sized dogs."
It could make sense to split the research process into parts to ensure it's viability. For example, if you're creating Pros and Cons tables with Amasuite's review analyzer - then have that as a separate part of research since it involves using a bit of software. We like to let our writers write and avoid technology as much as possible.
15) Create Content Images
For content that's around 1000 words, you should include 2-3 images to help engagement and reduce bounce rates.
Images help make your content scannable.
Find a VA to collect featured images, headshots or logos for your roundups, and everything in between. It's a good idea to provide a few examples of the style you're looking for, but in general collecting logo's should be done by someone else.
16) Create Social Media Images
Design is not an easy feat to master, and you probably shouldn't.
I can't say it's not important to learn about basic design and have some skills, but often times - someone is better than you.
Look to hire someone to create custom Pinterest images (use our Pinterest guide), Twitter images for text-only tweets, featured images - anything. I guarantee you'll find someone who is more talented than you.
Put your efforts elsewhere and find someone who can make your site look better than you can.
17) Collecting Emails of Influencers You Mention
As part of your outreach procedures, you should be reaching out to everyone you mention in your article. Just like your VA collected headshots for roundups, you can dedicate another task for them to collect the emails of people you mention and want to befriend.
Many sites have at least an option to subscribe to their email list, which is great. But, I suggest opening up a new gmail account for this so you aren't subscribed to hundreds of sites.
18) Collect Emails of Your Competitors GOOD Backlinks for Skyscraper
As part of the classic skyscraper technique, you should be recreating content that has tons of backlinks and shares already.
Hiring a VA to collect the emails of your competitors backlinks is a good idea. This task alone can take quite a while to fulfill.
Be careful as well, plenty of backlinks won't be useful at all, so make sure you try and do this task yourself first so you can differentiate to your VA what a bad backlink is from a good one.
19) Writing Snippet Copy
If you want to increase the click through rate of your social media posts, you need to write compelling copy.
This means you'll have to go beyond what you're already using as a title.
A snippet is a summary, specific fact, or quote from your post that you can use to gather interest. This allows you to use multiple variations of text to promote the same content.
20) Owned Channel Promotions
Many of the 'owned channels' that your site can distribute content to are able to be scheduled.
For example, posting on your Facebook page, pinning on Pinterest, email broadcasts, push notifications.
This scheduling can take quite a bit of time and so does writing each snippet. Find a VA that can do scheduling for you and if possible, write up the snippets as well.
21) Community Promotions
This aspect is a combination of tasks.
The VA you've hired to create snippets for you can also write the promotional headlines for your community promotions. The difficult thing about this job is that you have to trust someone to represent your brand in a sense.
Depending on how you want to promote your content, the VA can promote your content under your own alias or they can pretend to be a normal member in the community and drop your content into the groups.
Be careful though, places like Reddit won't take well for that - especially since they're able to see what you've posted in the past. If your VA only goes onto these communities to drop links to your site, something's fishy. This type of VA could be considered an external community manager.
In the future, we might be expanding this article to be a full gambit of things to keep your affiliate site moving - but for now we think this should set you loose for a while!
Dom's definitely going to be handing over a few of these duties to his own VA's. Currently, he's building up 2 sites live in the private forum! Head over to the live niche site case study and join in!