Welcome back to the second month of the Niche Site Journal case study.
You may have noticed we’ve stopped publishing weekly updates and moved to monthly updates instead. The reason I’ve done this is that during the initial research and setup phase weekly updates definitely make sense due to there being such a large amount of work to be completed. However, once we have completed the initial keyword research, competitor analysis, website setup and content writing the pace changes significantly. It goes from being all hands on deck, to everything being focused on one single task and that’s off page SEO, which is exactly where we are at right now.
So, let’s begin by recapping what was on the action list from last month:
Continue outreach – looking for contributor accounts, guest posting opportunities I’d like to set a target of at least 5 guest posts approved and to be submitted or already published by next week.
Amazon FBA – I need to design what content will be put on to the packaging and give the designer instructions on colours e.t.c / I also need to start getting the product page formatted, content ready / talk with the video guy about how the video will look, feel, what’s the message e.t.c.
OK, so this is an ongoing process, however I’ve made quite significant progress over the past 4 weeks, especially in the past 7-10 days, mainly due to the fact that I’ve been so freaking focused, seriously I am like a robot right now – it’s amazing, it won’t last, it never does, but if/when you get to this point take complete advantage of it.
During the past four weeks I began to create guest posting templates in Google Docs which I could share with the team of writers (when I hired them). The plan was, that I’d completely control and manage all communications with the website owners and I’d leave the creative writing completely in the hands of the team of writers I’d hire. As of right now I am trialling a team which I found via UpWork, it’s very early days, as in they’ve yet to complete there first article (next week) however looking at their previous work, I’ve got high hoped for them.
The Google Doc template simply has the following columns:
- URL of where I want to be published – takes the writers directly to the submission page which usually includes the guidelines.
- Category – the category of the website, so I can keep it organised and potentially re-use opportunities for future sites.
- Date Added – the date I added the website so I can keep track of how long it takes the team.
- Article Dropbox URL – this is for the writers to send me the article.
- Date Article Created – this is the date the writer finished writing the initial article.
As well as this, the team have already been briefed about the website I am looking to link back to and the type of articles that I want to be written. So, we’ll see how this goes.
At this point you might be thinking OK great Will, some definite progress there…but wait, that’s not all!
I do not want to put all my eggs in one basket when it comes to building systems, I am new to it and I don’t know which will work best. So, I’ve been building a few other systems as well.
As I’ve previously mentioned, contributor accounts are of vital importance to me as I feel they have the most benefits from a long term perspective. It’s been slow progress on this front, however recently I have begun to make some movements, I now have contributor accounts at the following DA sites:
All of which provide do follow links. I will continue to build contributor accounts, but it’s definitely a secondary approach to my link building efforts as I seem to do this as and when I stumble across sites that offer contributor accounts rather than actively seeking them out.
Partner Guest Post Accounts
Another strategy of mine is to use other people’s contributor accounts to get links in some very prominent, highly sought after publications. Now, I have a few reasons that I am doing this:
- It’s quick – I can contact these people and get them to publish guest posts all within 5-7 days.
- It’s great research – if these people can get contributor accounts and then sell those services to other people, then I am thinking I can definitely get contributor accounts at the same sites for my own personal use.
Now, since these are services quite a few of the guest posts are nofollow which in a normal situation I’d not be interested in, however I know for a fact (having completed the competitor analysis) that many of my competitors (in multiple niches) have used these same websites for nofollow guest posts. My thoughts are, I should be getting whatever links they have and more.
So, I am going to be getting guest posts at the following DA sites:
Now obviously I won’t just start publishing guest posts at all of these straight away, instead I will be drip feeding it so I can see the progress and also so it doesn’t look like I’ve just gone out and gone crazy over the course of a few days.
OK so now for another link building strategy, I am using an agency account I have at a major press release submission network to do a press release, one every month for my niche site (and my other sites). To be honest, I used to do press releases, years ago when it was all the rage and then I forgot about it as I never really saw any direct impact from doing so. However, it’s an affordable way of getting an extra layer of links which isn’t seen as being completely black hat, so I am up for it.
The product packaging has been designed and samples are on their way to me here in South Korea and my business partner back in the UK. This week we’ll have a call to discuss the samples, make sure we both agree on everything and then I will give the manufacturer the final go ahead to get the mass production completed. After that, we will pay the final 70% fee and have the products shipped to Amazon US warehouses which will take between 1-2 weeks.
Meanwhile, we have a professional photographer / video editor creating a quick promo video and professional photography for our Amazon product page, however these will also be used for press releases, our website and any other promotional channels we use such as social media. I am beginning to get quite excited with this side of the business as it’s completely new to me and whilst I don’t have high expectations of performance (it’s very competitive), I am positive the learning curve will be fantastic and well worth it.
OK with all that out of the way, let’s take a peak at performance, quite excited as I’ve not looked at the stats in such a detailed way for a few weeks.
OK so this is the graph for the past 90 days, which is pretty much since the site was added to Search Console, but prior to the official launch of the website. You will notice I highlighted the 11th March 2016 well that’s when link building initially started. After that you can see a steady increase in impressions and then a slight jump at the beginning of April and then a second much more significant jump at the beginning of May. If the site continues to increase as it is doing I will be very happy indeed, now as we have some initial data let’s overlay this with some clicks!
As you know from previous updates I didn’t actually want to add clicks as it’s far to sporadic and doesn’t really show much of a trend. However I thought for an initial analysis it could be quite useful to see how these impressions translate in to clicks. I’ve highlighted the last spike which as on the 3rd May where the site received 296 impressions and 10 clicks. Now, you might be thinking holy shit that’s an awful CTR, but remember most of these keywords are in an average position of like 50, ha.
Overall, I think it’s safe to say that the site is growing quite nicely, we’re in our second month officially approximately 8 weeks in to the launch of the website.
OK Will, awesome you have some clicks and impressions, but what about dollar dollar bill yo?
Good question! Let’s take a quick look.
- Amazon March Statistics: 5 clicks
- Amazon April Statistics: 23 clicks
- Amazon May Statistics: 7 clicks and 3 orders
I absolutely knew it, completely 100% that this month would generate orders, honestly I am not bullshitting here. For some reason by looking at my search console graphs over the past day or two I was 100% confident that this month my niche site cherry would pop and it did, today actually! I’ve received 3 orders with a total revenue of approximately $200 at a commission level of 8% (this is generally what I hit each month) that translates to approximately $16, yeah, go me!
What’s the plan for the next four weeks?
Over the next four weeks I reckon there will be some big changes with the site in both impressions, clicks, revenue and then from an action list point of view lots of things are starting to piece together now so it’s going to be very exciting indeed.
- Outreach – obviously this will continue, I want to get articles published on all of the contributor accounts I have. Also, want to begin seeing some results from the two systems I have running.
- Press Releases – I will submit a press release or two for the site.
- Amazon FBA – hopefully next month’s update will include something like “and we’re live on Amazon…” or at least we’ll be very, very close.
So, that’s it for this months update – let me know if you have any questions and please subscribe for more updates! oh and share on Facebook, Twitter and all that jazz.