Niche Site U Episode #14: Interview With John Scherer

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The Niche Site U Podcast

John SchererIn this episode of the Niche Sites U Podcast, I interview John Scherer who gained national fame with his Video Professor Series.

Among other things, we discuss his newest projects, Products In The News and O2 Hurricane.

John and I speak for under an hour about how he chose his niche, how he grew it to be a huge revenue producer, and how he effectively marketed his products.

Towards the end, John has a special offer for the listeners.

 

 

How Many Niche Sites Should I Manage?

4-ball_juggling

It Depends!

I put together a video to address this question which was originally asked here by Doug Cunnington.  When building a niche site, you need to figure out what level of niche site builder you are.

There are 3 levels… perhaps more, but I just talk about 3.  Newbie, Veteran and Pro.  Which one are you?  Watch the video to see what I would call you.

 

It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness. ~ Charles Spurgeon

Great quote, but in reality, it boils down to how much you can handle, and how much you can track.  Things that are important for me to track are rank, traffic, cost and of course… revenue.  If you can’t make a profit building niche websites, you need to research how to do it again.

Doug, who posed the initial question… has his response here: http://nichesiteproject.com/working-multiple-niche-sites-time/

I want guest posters!

I posted this the other day on G+, but in case you didn’t see it:

I was thinking that this Niche Site U site should be less of a single person perspective on niche sites… and that I should open it up to different points of view and information.

So, with that said, I would like to offer up the opportunity for guest posts if you are interested.  (feel free to let others know as well)

As far as topics, as long as it brings value, isn’t an obvious advertisement, and can help those building niche sites… there will be no restrictions.  Again, it has to be relevant to niche site builders, but no other restrictions.

As far as links… please limit the links to your websites or those of others… but not affiliate links.  I don’t want this to be a sales pitch for products… just good usable information for nichers to implement.

Drop a comment below about how many niche sites you are managing right now.  If you are interested in guest posting… hit me up!

 

How To Create Headlines For Your Website That Drive More Traffic

The one question that most clients ask me is “How do I get more traffic to my website?”

Well, the answer is almost always the same.  You don’t know already??

Shocked-face

Seriously though, you can either pay for it with advertising “push marketing”, or you can create amazing content that brings prospects to your site for free! (pull marketing)

One of the most important things you can do to get more traffic is get a prospects attention.  To do this, you have to stand out from the crowd and you have to be talking about things that are important to your prospects.

How To Create Amazing Headlines That Pull In Traffic

You probably don’t realize this, but I already told you the answer.  The most popular type of headline that people click on to find out more information is the “how to” headline.  Here is an example from this website, where I explain how to make $200/month using outsourced content writers.

Whether it is to be better looking, lose weight, make more money, persuade people, get more dates, etc. everyone is looking to find out how to do things.  Google is asked millions of questions on a daily basis about how to do this, how to find that, how to fix those.  All you have to do is provide the answers.

Is that it? Is it really that simple?  Yes and no.

Yes it is that simple because all you have to do is start your headline with whatever your topic was going to be about.  No, it doesn’t just end there.  You have to write content that actually interests people.   The good news is, the things you write about “should” interest people as long as you are talking about the business you are in, and if you are trying to help people solve their problems.

4 Proven Headline Types That Work

There are 4 simple and proven headline types that will always increase the amount of clicks your content will get, and thus drive more prospects to your door.

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  1. How To headlines – I already gave you this one, and this is by far the most successful for most of our clients.  Again, people want to be healthy, wealthy, and wise, and if you can tell them how to do that… they will follow you to the moon.
  2. List headlines – yes, you may have noticed that I used that above (4 proven…).  Trust me, it works.  People love lists.  Whether it is a small list with just 3-4 items, or if it is a monster list with 501 ways to do something, people will read it.  People may not read every single item on the list, but they will certainly browse through it.
  3. Best and worst headlines –  You see them all over the place.  This can go a few directions.  It can be a positive piece of content, one that mentions all the best items/features/etc. or it can be a negative piece that is critical or picky.  You can also do a blend of the two, but our research actually finds that if you are negative, and talk about the worst of something, you will get more readers.  Sad but true, and perhaps that is just the human condition.  Warning: Do not write too much content in a negative light.  It is bad for you to think that way, but more importantly, you don’t want to be an eeyore all the time.
  4. Secret headlines – Everyone wants to be on the inside of a secret.  The funny thing is, it is never a secret once it is shared… but people still love them anyway.  You don’t actually have to have a secret.  It can be something glaringly obvious to people, but if you point it out and call it a secret, people take notice.

[/sociallocker]

Not sure if I’m telling the truth?  Check out any Cosmo Cover and see for yourself.  You will see all 4 of these used quite often in most of the magazines you find by your supermarket checkout stand.  Why are they used? Because they work!

The Secret To Finding What People Search For

Red Question Mark

I told you already that you need to write content that actually interests people.  It’s true, and it isn’t as difficult as you think.  Most people avoid sitting down and writing out articles because they are afraid that they don’t have anything important to write about.

Fortunately, you can figure out very easily what is important to people… and there are a number of ways to do it.

My favorite way to find out what to write about or to figure out what websites/products/services to build are by simply asking people.  If you are building a website, you have a target audience in mind.  Well, find people that are in that target and ask them what they want in a website.  What topics interest them.  What do they hate about the websites that are out there now.  What would they like to see changed in their industry.

If you ask the right questions, you will be surprised at how many great ideas there are out there just waiting to be put into reality.  The same goes for products or services.  If you are in a business that deals with clients and/or prospects (which is everyone!!) then you have a great resource at your fingertips.  Ask your clients what they want and they will often tell you.

Another great way to find out what people are interested in right now is to just check google.  Google has a number of ways to find out whats hot, what people search for, and what people like.  3 items that I love to use are Google Autocomplete, Google Trends, and Google Zeitgeist.

Using those 3 will give you unlimited ways to find out what people are interested in.

Putting it all together

Now that you know the secret to finding what people are searching for, and how to create amazing headlines that are guaranteed to pull in more traffic, you just need to pull it all together.  First, you need to figure out who your target audience is.  The next step, is to find out what interests them.  Finally, create a headline that uses the topic of interest and customize a headline using one of the 4 headline types to grab their attention.

Of course, none of this works without marketing.  You need to make sure your content is in front of people.

The best way to do that is to share it via social media or email.  IF you like what you read, please like it, tweet about it, or +1 it… or simply email a friend a link to this article so they can benefit from it too.

Final Step

Now I have a question for you.  Do you have a headline type you like most?  Let me know in the comments below.

Niche Website Round Up – November 2013

Hey nichers,

I have some things in the works right now, but wanted to share with you some articles that I think are worthwhile to read regarding niche websites.  Some of the most important things you can learn sometimes come from articles and posts that are not necessarily niche site related.  In the below posts, you will find some that are specific to niche sites, and some that are just web design or business related posts.  Hope you enjoy.

On a personal note… tonight is the final game of my son’s Pop Warner football season.  I coach the 90 pound team, and we had a great year.  The funny thing about these weights, is you have to be 9 years old or younger to play at this weight.  So the majority of my kids are 60-70 pounders, and my son is 65 pounds.  Surprisingly, we went 8-2 this year and really kicked some butt.  We play in a bowl game tonight against another 8-2 team, so it should be fun doing the Friday night lights thing!

The reason I mention that is two-fold.  First, I want to try to share more of my personal experiences in life and how they impact my niche sites here.  Also, not having practice 3 nights a week and 2 hours per practice is going to give me more free time to focus on my businesses, my niche sites, and of course this site and the podcast that goes with it.

 

The Round Up:

 

How To Rank Niche Sites

 

 

The first post I want to share with you is a decent “how to rank niche sites” article by Spencer Mitchell for setting up niche websites.  The reason I want you to read it is because it gives a different perspective on the process, and mentions some things I don’t necessarily agree with.  If you are asking why I want you to read things I don’t agree with?? The simple answer is that you should always look at both sides of a situation before deciding for yourself what the best path is.  This is a little older, but the information in the post is still very relevant.

Check Out Spencer’s post here.

 

Write Persuasive Content

 

 

The next post I want to share with you is focused on writing persuasive website content by Henneke Duistermaat.  The article is a look at 7 lessons that a website builder can learn by following Apple’s practices.  There are some really important points in the article.  The first, which I love, is to write for scanners.  Now this doesn’t always apply, as some sites (like this one) are meant to have someone actually read the page content… not deliver you to another destination after briefly scanning through the content.  This is really applicable to niche websites because your goal of a niche site is to convert.  Convert to adsense, convert to affiliate ads, convert to mailing list, etc.

Check Out Henneke’s post here.

 

Stop Trying To Make Money And Do It!

 

 

This is an interesting post by Darek Kargul for nichers that have tried but failed to have success building up their niche site network.  The best part of this post is his discussion about how to analyze the results you are getting.  Building a niche website is not a set it and forget it project.  If you really want to make money, you need to analyze the traffic that is coming into your website, figure out what is driving it, where it is going on your site, and why it is leaving.  He goes into detail about 15 of the many data points that you can track.  Darek also provides a couple traffic generation ideas from social…and buying traffic.  Worth a read.

Check Out Darek’s post here.

 

Tips For Starting A Lifestyle Business

 

Most of you have read the 4 hour workweek.  If you haven’t, stop reading this post and go read it now.  I mean it, go!!  Tim’s book planted many seeds about how to take mini retirements now by creating a lifestyle business that allows you to travel the world (or do whatever you feel like) while still making money. Rasmus Lindgren wrote an interesting piece that provides 10 specific tips for starting and managing that lifestyle business.  I’m on the fence about his first tip, which is copy what is working.  I think this is a good tactic if you have absolutely no idea what to do with yourself… but if you are always copying others, you are never able to distinguish yourself.  This is actually a lesson I tried to convey to my 9 year old son.  Most of us grow up copying others, trying to look cool, be cool, act cool, while deep inside you were full of insecurity about what people would think about you if you didn’t do everything your group did.  Peer pressure is a nightmare, and it really doesn’t help anyone!!  Look at the innovators in this world… very few just copied what is working.  They had to be different in order to lead the pack, or just left the pack entirely to follow their own dreams.  Aside from that, it is a post I have gone back to and reread a few times because it is full of great content.

Check out Rasmus’ post here.

 

How To Promote Your Blog Posts

Marketing TechBlog

 

 

Unfortunately, this is sitting in my “to-do” bin, but I still wanted to share it with you.  Douglas Karr put together an infographic about 12 things you must do “after” you’ve written a blog post.  It is a good looking infographic, but most importantly, it covers the basic points of what you need to do.  Many of us (myself being one of the worst offenders) tend to focus on creating the content itself, but never do much after the post is created.  The concept of content marketing requires two parts.  The first, and what I think is actually the hardest part is creating the content.  The easiest part is the marketing of that content.  Pushing it out to others and creating a buzz about it.  Very few of us do this, and even fewer do it the right way. Douglas lays it all out in an easy to read and follow infographic.

Check out Douglas’ post here.

 

Got a post you think others should be reading?  Let us know in the comments or shoot me an email.

How I Make $200/Month Using Outsourced Content Writers

First off, I know $200 is a very small amount of money, but the example is from just one of my niche sites that is pretty much on complete autopilot.  Also, I am writing this for people that either have been afraid of stepping up and creating niche sites, or that have but haven’t made any money yet.

I know the buzzword of the day is content.  Content is king, but most of us tend to spew it out like it was written by a court jester.  The goal of content is to make your site more engaging and interactive… so you can make money from it!  But if you stink at writing, how can you get enough traffic to the site to make $200/month or more?

Niche website builders run into this issue all the time.  At least I do.   My writing stinks.  My interest level in some of the niches I build is zero.  Do you really feel like writing a 2 thousand word post about electric shavers? (Jason Hill does, but Im sure most people aren’t interested in writing about it!)

So what do you do then?  The answer is OUTSOURCE it.

One of my niche sites is about Family Picture Ideas.  The site isn’t ranked #1 on Google anymore(Damn you Penguin 2.1), and isn’t even on page #1, but I still manage to make about $200 per month from it. In October, I made $202.07.  See below (please note I cut out other sites ‘that made more and less than this site‘ from this list and I scratched out metrics other than earnings, otherwise no photoshopping is involved)

Adsense October 2013

I know, I can read your thoughts.  Outsourcing is going to get me an article with horrible english and will look like it was written by a 2nd grader.  Sometimes, yes!  If you just go onto fiverr and don’t get specific about what you need, then yes, that is absolutely the case!  But as you can see from my site, the content is decent enough to drive traffic.

To help make sure you get the right kind of content, I put together a short list of things you should do to make sure you get quality in return for your investment dollars.

Be Specific.

Always try to include “special instructions” to the writers when you submit your projects. Don’t just tell someone that you want an article written about Niche Site X.  Tell them what keywords to focus on, what type of quality you expect and what perspective it should be written from.  The more detailed instructions you include, the greater chance you’ll get exactly what you want, the first time.

Timing is Everything With Writers.

Monday’s are typically the best day to submit article requests to content writers, as that is when the writer’s project queue is at its lowest during the week.  If you want, you can also send in your requests during the weekend.  The lower the queue, the faster writers will write your articles.  If you are looking for a quick turnaround, it’s best to not submit your requests mid week when the rest of the working world does it.

Find a Favorite Writer.

Most content writing companies have a large network of writers at their disposal.  Often times, you will have a specific writer assigned to your project, and the company will share that persons name or assign some sort of code for the writer.  This will allow you to go back to that same author for future projects if needed.  The benefit here is that the writer will become more familiar with what your expectations are, and even more importantly, they will be familiar with your content already.  This will keep the articles from being superficial pieces every time.  After a while, you may find that you have built your own network of quality writers.

You Get What You Pay For.

It’s great to be able to say that you only pay three dollars for a five hundred word article.  But if it looks like the article was written by someone from Indonesia, then it really isn’t worth the three bucks even.  The best way to work with content writers is to look for someone that will cut you a deal for the first few articles, with the understanding that future articles will cost more.  For instance, find a writer that will charge you $10-15 per 500 words if you are looking for decent quality, but tell them the first 2 articles need to be written for $5 each so you can evaluate their quality.  Show the person your website and let them know you are looking for a long term writer.  If the writer is decent, they will go for it because they see the value in more consistent work.

To Err is Human.

I’m not talking about letting your writers off for poor work… though you should be fair and considerate when dealing with them.  What I am talking about is the fact that people make mistakes all the time when typing things into the search engines… and sometimes you can find you have a better ranking position if you use the misspelled words in your article.  I try to avoid doing this too much because my OCD kicks into high gear when I see stuff like this, but it actually can work.   So if you happen to be writing an article about electric shavers, electic shavers, and electric shavrs, you may find that you get more traffic than you would if you spelled it right.  This is also a good method for use when building content for web 2.0 properties where it might not be as important.

Avoid Article Spinning.

If you want to put content out there and you really don’t care how good the content or english is… rather than spinning articles I would suggest you just have the article rewritten a few times.  You can find very affordable writers out there that will write a 500 word article for $2, so why not use them?  Google has gotten tougher on sites that have awful content (spun articles) and you should avoid them.

Be Prepared To Invest.

If you are really looking to $200/month from a niche site, then you need to be prepared to invest.   I set a goal of $500/month for every website I build… so why should I only be willing to spend $50 on the creation of the site and its content?  The answer is I shouldn’t!!

Anyone investing money offline would be thrilled with a 10% return usually, but when it comes to the web people expect returns that are a minimum of 500%.  Why?  Be realistic with the business/niche site/project you are building and shoot for a 100% max return.  If you invest $100 a month and get $200 back, you are doing it right!!  For $100, you can get 10 articles written per month for $10 each.  The truth is, for this site, I don’t invest in 10 articles per month because I prefer to squeeze out as much profit as possible.

One last thing, be patient and be prepared to work hard!  Don’t expect to make $200 from your one hundred dollar investment the first month.  Stocks rarely double within a month, so again, don’t expect those kinds of returns.  If you can be breaking even after 90 days, you should be in the black in no time and ready to move onto another project with this one basically on auto pilot.

Am I missing anything? What have you found works best with content writers?  Tell me in the comments.

Monitor Backlinks Review – Advanced Backlink Checker Tool

Make sure you read all the way through, I provide a secret tip for Google+ Users at the end.

I recently found this site, and signed up, so I figured I would give everyone a review of monitorbacklinks.com.

I have also been working with Razvan, the CEO, and he has offered to provide a coupon code to use and upgrade to a premium plan, that will get 3 months of a premium plan for the price of one.  Use this Link and Enter This Code: OFF50NHT6JABM for discount!

Here is a brief intro video before you read my review:

One of the things that is necessary to market any business online, is to monitor backlinks.  Backlinks are an essential part of search engine optimization, and having many links that point back to your site is an important part of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for your niche site business.

Knowing when and how these links change, can allow you to make important business decisions related to your SEO strategy.  The problem is, that these links are not all equal in value, and they can change every single day.  It can be a very time-consuming task to monitor and build those links, as well as understand how important each one of them is. While the process of keeping track of your links is not new, there are new tools that will allow you to simplify the process.

So, I found a company called Monitor Backlinks that has an excellent service to help you with this part of your SEO strategy.  Monitor Backlinks can help automate this process for you. They have a number of plans available to help manage your domains, and backlink profiles. They help startups, SEO consultants, agencies and small to medium businesses, and of course… niche website builders.

Monitor Backlinks allows you to get started for FREE!, for 30 days.  They have three plans that range from $19.90 to $99.90 per month after that.  All their plans include a number of time-saving services.

The first benefit is that you don’t have to go through a long verification process for your domain.  When you first sign up, you just add your domain, as well as some competitors if you choose, and they get started monitoring your backlinks right away.  This avoids any delay they may find with other providers.

Monitor Backlinks will also provide reports, that they send directly to your email address.  Many times for other services you have to go to the provider’s website, which can be cumbersome and time consuming.  They make this simple and easy by sending email reports directly to your inbox, which I love.  This  allows you to make sure that the results are brought to your attention, and  won’t simply go unreviewed.

As you may know, not all backlinks are created equally as Penguin 2.1 proved.  Each link, can have a different value assigned to it based on a number of metrics.  Monitor Backlinks will provide you with a number of metrics so you can clearly understand which SEO links, are the most important to your business. This can save a lot of time and money, by having all the important information about the quality of your links in one place.

Now, having all of these metrics in one place is helpful, but Monitor Backlinks also allows you to filter these results. You can manipulate the results in various ways, so that you can clearly visualize what to do next. You can add tags, arrange by statistics, and filter by certain metrics.  This is a vitally important aspect of what Monitor Backlinks can do for you. While it is helpful to have all the information in one place, the ability to arrange it in a way that allows you to take action, and further improve your SEO,  is arguably more important.  Monitor Backlinks does a great job of allowing you to do that.

All the plans also include the ability to export the links via PDF or Excel reports. This is helpful for your records,  and also gives you the ability to send these reports to your clients.

Adding additional links is easy, and you are able to do this both from your browser or their bookmarklet.

Add Links - Monitor Bookmarks

As mentioned before, Monitor Backlinks offers three separate plans, depending on your needs.  These can be paid monthly, or annually if you would like to save 20%.   All plans come with a 30 day free trial, which does not require a credit card!!

Here’s an overview of the three plans monitor backlink offers:

All plans include

Start:

This plan starts at $19.90 per month, and is geared towards startups or freelancers.

It allows you to monitor two domains.   They will check these domains daily so that you are aware of any new links to your website.  In the Start plan, they will monitor 50 keywords, and up to 500 links. It will also monitor two of your competitors domains. The start plan also will monitor of the 500 of your top competitors links as well

Plus:

This plan starts at $49.90 per month and is geared towards SEO consultants and other small businesses.  The Plus plan will allow you to monitor five domains, so that you know of new backlinks on a daily basis.  This plan also includes up to 200 keywords and 5000 links. It will allow you to track for competitors domains, and up to 1000 competitors links.

Professional:

The professional plan starts at $99.90 per month. Is geared towards agencies and medium-sized businesses. As with the other plans it does come with the 30 day free trial with no credit card required.  It will allow you to monitor 10 domains on a daily basis, so you are aware of new links. You can monitor 500 keywords and up to 15,000 links.  Four competitor domains are able to be tracked, as well as 1500 of the top competitors links.

So, as you can see, there are a number of plans to fit a wide variety of needs. Whether you need to monitor your own websites SEO and backlinks, or a large number of clients websites (for you SEOs out there), there is a plan to fit your needs.  They state that technical knowledge is not necessary for you to use Monitor Backlinks, and it does not affect your server or computers processing power, and I would agree with that statement… but to be fair, I feel I am a bit more techy than most.

Use this Link and Enter This Code:  OFF50NHT6JABM for discount!

 

Free Backlink Checker SEO Tool

Free Backlink Checker Tool

Why Use Monitor Backlinks?

Here are 3 of the many good reasons to use them.

First, if someone mentions you in their blog, does a review of a product, service, or niche site you produced.  They check every day for new links pointing to your website and let you know as soon as that happens.  They will send you an e-mail with a link to that article so you can thank the blogger for the review or ask for feedback from his/her readers.

Second, you can monitor links that you have worked hard for, rented or purchased.  Your marketing efforts are never easy, and most likely not what you would consider free.  If you are like me, you spend a lot of time, energy and perhaps money to get traffic from really good sites that cover your niche, or to convince the “linkerati” (yes, Brian Dean… now I am saying it” to link to your website, or a from a guest post.  Well what happens if one of these sites you pour money into removes your valuable link after just a short period of time?  If you purchased or rented the link, then that would be awful and needs to be addressed.  Monitor Backlinks will let you know almost instantly!  In this way, you are always aware of what is happening with your brand outside your website and the community will surely appreciate your involvement.

Finally, you can be a ninja and track your competition using this tool.  You most likely don’t have the same size budget as some of the big players in your industry.  Your competitors are constantly spending valuable time and resources to find new websites that will link to them.  Using this tool will allow you to monitor their activity and send you an e-mail every time they get new backlinks. You can follow their footsteps and keep up!  This is simply setup with and “auto-discover” tool that they have.

Overall, Monitor Backlinks could be a valuable tool to add to your SEO toolbox. It can save time and money, and has some excellent reviews (aside from this one of course). It allows you to avoid the process of manually monitoring your backlinks, and keeps you up-to-date daily.  To get started with their 30 day free trial you can easily register, add your domain, and begin right away by visiting their website.

Cool tip from CEO of Monitor Backlinks:

Below you can view a 10 minute screencast video that describes how you can get a good link from your Google Plus profile and how to avoid making Google ignore that link (making it nofollow).  His accent may be difficult for you to understand… I had to watch it 2x.

Niche Site U Episode #13: Listener Questions

Listen in iTunes

The Niche Site U Podcast

Hope you enjoy!

Why Hitler Being Dead Is Important To Your Niche Sites!

Hitler Dead HeadlineThe other day, I wrote a post about Penguin 2.1 and the how it affected one of my niche sites.  You can read the article here if you want, but it has no impact on this post.  I posted a link to the article in the Niche Site Community (join if you haven’t already) on Google+, as I always do.  One of the members of the community read it and took the time to comment, which is really appreciated.  I wont intentionally call him out, you can read the comments to find him quite easily, but I do want to call out part of his comment.

The first thing he said in his comment was:

“big headline but very boring content.”

It got me thinking.  Google has spent millions (and possibly billions) of dollars of brain power focused on one goal… creating a better search engine experience.  When they generate their search results for each and every keyword, their goal is to give the user exactly what he/she is looking for.  They have made it more and more difficult for thin websites to rank in the top 100, especially in the top 10.

There are countless factors in Big G’s algorithm to determine who shows up where in the SERPs.  Most of which (in my opinion) have to do with links to your website.  But recently there has been a huge push towards having quality content on your website.  Content content content… that is all most people talk about.  SEO’s will tell you that you need to write longer articles, or high quality articles.  And by all means, you should!   The more time on site, the more pages per visit, the lower the bounce rate, etc. the better chance you have of ranking well.

The goal is to get to #1.  No doubt about it.   But what if you aren’t there yet?  What if you are #5.  Or worse yet, #65!  You and I build niche websites for one reason… TRAFFIC!!  If you want to get ahead in the digital marketing space, you need to have traffic.

I know what you are thinking… Adam, we know all this! Where are you going with this post??

What most of you don’t know, and something obviously missed by the comment is…

People Can’t See Your Wonderful Content Until They Click On Your Title!!

People spend hours and sometimes days writing amazing content, then they slap together a headline for their post in 15 seconds.  Worse yet, most writers will actually create the headline before they write the content, thinking they want the topic to be “keyword related”.   Let’s look at that comment again:  “big headline, but very boring content.”  Are you kidding me?  How boring would the content be if you never clicked on the headline?  At least I got your eyeballs on it so you could love it or hate it.

How many times have you seen a headline/title in the search results and you just knew it was an affiliate site or adsense site?  Most people scan through the titles and descriptions before clicking on a listing… so you have a 10% chance of getting that traffic (not counting the paid advertisements).  Now lets step back again and look at what Google wants.  Does google want people to find high quality content?  Of course they do… but what if the person never clicks through to your site?  They need you to click a link, or their search engine isn’t doing its job.  So the first thing Google wants is a better click through ration (number of times your link is clicked on, divided by the number of times your link is shown).

Would you rather have a site with one hundred thousand visitors per month and a 75% bounce rate, or a site with 2700 visitors per month with a zero percent bounce rate?  Your answer is right either way.  If you want a lower traffic site that people never bounce on, you will likely create a loyal following.  But most niche websites, and most websites in general for that matter aren’t built for a loyal following… they are built to get high amounts of traffic and monetize those visitors.   If you want to have success in the niche site game, you need to be focused on getting to the 100k visitors per month and beyond type of site.

Bold Headlines Make Sites Look Cheesy Though

Yeah, sure they do.  But they work!!  Go through the checkout at a grocery store and tell me what you read.  Wait, I can read your mind.  You read the headlines on the Enquirer, and Us Weekly, and all those other great masterpieces of journalism.  We all do!   But Im sure you would never buy one… nobody does. (That’s why they have been on store shelves for 30+ years, in such an important merchandising spot near the money…because nobody buys them, haha!)

Its not just in the supermarkets either.  Look at big traffic websites like Gawker or Huffington Post.  The headlines are just as silly.  But they grab attention!!  And thus get the clicks.  Here are some sample headlines from today, on Gawker:

Ok, hopefully you come back after you click on one of those… because I know that your mouse finger was getting twitchy when you read some of those.  Who wouldn’t want to know more.  But the point is, rarely does anyone read an article like that and walk away thinking “that was the greatest article ever written!”  Usually they just think, well that wasn’t what I hoped it would be, and then they click around somewhere else (often on ads or other articles on the site).

Next Steps

Your next steps are simple.  Spend more time crafting your headlines.  If you still don’t think its important, check out a few copyblogger articles about it: http://www.copyblogger.com/category/headlines/  If they have a category about it, its probably pretty important.

My personal suggestion to you would be to write your article/post first, then spend just as much time on your headline as you spent writing the article.

PS- Hitler being dead has absolutely nothing to do with niche sites… but as you can see, it made for a whopper of a headline in the paper and it most likely got you to click on the headline 🙂

How To Make Your Niche Website Penguin Proof

For starters… let me begin with saying that I got hit by Penguin 2.1.

Penguin 2.1 Example

OUCH!!! Bad Penguin!

The above image is an example of Penguin 2.1 affecting one of my niche websites.  I was recently able to get to #1 for 3 target (related) keywords… but now I am out of the top 100 for one of them, and was out of the top 100 for the others during the past few days.  I am currently sitting in the range of #30-35 for all of them.

The site was bringing me in about $40-$50 per day when it was #1, which was pretty good.  Now, after P 2.1 which rolled out Friday, I am making just a few bucks per day.  Now, I’m not going to pretend that I am not extremely upset… but I will just have to be patient to see where this ends up.

What is Penguin 2.1, and what is it doing to niche sites.

P 2.1 is affecting primarily niche websites, and micro niche sites.  Sites affected most have some of the following qualities:

  • Links from poor or low quality sites
  • Irrelevant site links
  • Paid links
  • Links from a site that has a high % of disavowed links.
  • Keyword rich links
  • Over optimized Anchor Text links pointing to them

Now that we know what it is, lets briefly discuss who it is hitting

  • Links from poor or low quality sites – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)
  • Irrelevant site links – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)
  • Paid links – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)
  • Links from a site that has a high % of disavowed links – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)
  • Keyword rich links – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)
  • Over optimized Anchor Text links pointing to them – (SEO’s and Niche Sites)

You see a theme starting here??? Yeah, me too.  Google’s recent Hummingbird algorithm and P 2.1 updates serve 1 purpose… Big G’s!!  One can certainly argue that cleaning up search results from crappy niche sites is a positive, and I will agree.  The problem is, now that many of these niche websites have been bounced back in the rankings, “other niche sites” are now being placed in the top positions.  SO, what is the point?

Well, lets recall that Google makes 98%+ of their revenues from paid search, also known as Pay Per Click.  Google wants businesses to have to pay to have a top position, not get there for free.  If you look at recent search results, you will see how much they are focused on paid links!!

 

paid search example

Paid Outnumbers Organic 11-3!!

So what is your point??

My point is simple.  Google has changed the way they do business… and it is only a matter of time before consumers stop going to google to be slammed with ads.  Eventually, people are going to want to have less skewed results.  That, or the world is full of sheep (most likely).

Here is the secret that most of you won’t read because this post is too long (which it isn’t) and even less of you will take action on, but just in case.

Use pictures.  Not just a few pictures, but as many pictures as you can.  If you look at some of the heavy hitter blogs, not only is there alot of content, but there are tons of pictures.  Do you know why?  Pictures aren’t affected by any of these algorithmic updates!!  The site that I mentioned above (which Im keeping private because I don’t want anymore competition than I have already) got slammed by P 2.1, but it still has the #1 spot for pictures.  If any of you have seen the change in search results, you will notice that many of them still show pictures like this:

Pictures in Search

No, this is not my niche site

 

The Truth

The truth is you won’t ever be hit with this if you build a deep authority site, but that isn’t why you are visiting this site.  You are here because you are looking for passive income that can be replicated pretty easily… niche websites.  So try using the Picture method and see how your sites indexing changes.  For the record, I have a number of “content” sites that get tons of traffic from pictures that you typically wouldn’t think would get any traffic.

Good luck and hopefully you won’t get hit by future algorithm updates.

Welcome To The Brand New Niche Site U

Hi all,

You may notice another test I am running… I have changed my domain to Niche Site U dot com!!  Under the old website, I wasn’t getting any organic traffic, at all.  I’m not talking about not getting keyword data because of Google’s efforts to not share what keywords are driving traffic to your site… Im saying I was getting zero traffic from the google’s search engine.  Luckily, thanks to visitors like you, I still get a decent amount of traffic visiting the site… but no love from Google.

So, I am conducting an experiment.  I 301’d all the old posts to this site, and will be waiting to see if I start ranking and generating traffic.  (Believe it or not, it already has improved).  One of the keywords I target went from being unranked to #87 already, so hopefully this will payoff for all my keywords.

The most puzzling/annoying part is that most websites get long tail traffic of some sort, and usually my targeted keywords only bring in about 20-30% of the overall organic traffic.  Again, I was getting zero visits from google for any keywords.

If this pays off, I will eventually get a custom design and spruce this place up… but for now, I am just seeing how things go.

Stay tuned for updates.

Adam