to generate over $3,000/month
in less than 10 months!
September was an exciting one! I saw a significant win with my purchased site turning it from making $0/month to almost $1k and my overall income for the September breaking some new records and coming so close to a huge milestone. The traffic to my case study site took a decline but analyzing all related Google trends that is to be expected (students are not looking for loans in September – they already have them). But, even with the decline some monetization changes I made after deep diving into my analytics last month have been paying off.
In September I was happy to help out a lot of people using my VA’s to find expired domains for them. If interested in finding expired domain yourself here is how I do it or let me find expired domains for you.
We are having the last blast of Summer here in Canada as well so tried to get out and enjoy it as much as possible with my family.
Website Purchase Monetization – I was able to turn my purchased website which was making $0/month into an almost $1k/month earner doing some simple steps. This topic deserves a separate post but here is the basic steps I followed…
- Identified the high traffic pages
- Removed the common monetization methods (ie site-wide general ads)
- Thought about exactly what problem the people that were coming to the page were having
- Thought about what could be offered as solutions to their problem
- Found CPA offers that I could offer the visitor that were tightly related to the problem/solution they were having that drove them to visit the page
- Embedded the offer in the popular pages with clear calls to action at the top, subtle call to action within the post and again at the bottom.
This activity took one night to complete and one week to get all the approvals to the new CPA offers. It was definitely some of the highest leverage use of my time! Next up is continuing to test and incrementally improve the higher earning pages.
Expired Domain Help – In August I published my ultimate guide to finding expired domains. Since then I have had a lot of requests from people looking to take advantage of expired domains to improve their sites rankings. It was based on these requests I have started offering up the service where I will find expired domains that meet my metrics and are relevant to your niche. While I am still setting up all the systems and marketing channels I am offering at a steep discount – custom expired domain list. Right now I am also helping a few people with a complete done for you feeder site network where I am finding 5 relevant expired domains, registering at different hosts, setting up on different hosting accounts, adding original content and managing for them. If this interests you feel free to contact me and we can discuss strategy.
If you want I can find you a custom list of expired domains that are specific to your niche – find out more here
There are always challenges and in September I had a few…
Traffic Decline due to Seasonal Trend – It can be frustrating when you are working building a website and it feels like no matter what you do the traffic goes down not up. Well that is the feeling I am fighting with my student loan site. September, October, November and December are the worst months according to Google Trends but I will continue to work to build the foundation for success come January.
Working in my Business and Not On It! – In September I found myself doing a lot of tasks I could outsource such as helping find domains (so that people got them quickly) or publishing posts myself. This isn’t a big deal if I had time but I don’t. My time needs to be used to do high leverage activities(split testing, new opportunities, strategy, communication, writing for this site) and when I spend it on tasks others could do it means I am not working to grow on other parts of my business. So for October I am going to make sure I am working on my business and not in it! I was first introduced to that quote from E-Myth Revisited (great book!)
Fell Short by $12.10 – One of my goals I am tracking publicly is to earn more from my PayMyStudentLoans.com website in 3 months of this year. Right now I am 1 for 8 since I won June by a wide $1,600 margin but then last month I lost by only $12.10! With 4 months left to tally I need to win 2 months.
Authority Website (PayMyStudentLoans.com) Stats for September
Income = $2,383.41
- CPA #1 (loan consolidation) = $84 (-357)
- CPA #2 (loan and loan consolidation) = $2132.77 (+243.37)
- CPA #3 (credit check) = $0 (-)
- CPA #4 (debt monitoring) = $0
- CPA #4 (loan consolidation) = $72 (+72)
CPA Offer #1 = $84
I am moving away from this affiliate and focusing on higher earning and more tightly matched affiliate offers.
CPA Offer #2 = $2,132.77
The conversion problem from last month is moving in the right direction even with isolating for the higher percentage of my traffic going to this offer. I did several things including change the landing page, focus on generating higher value traffic and changed the call to actions.
CPA Offer #3 = $0
No conversions from my email list for this one.
CPA Offer #4 = $72
With the purchase of my new site I signed up for a new CPA program and found a good use for it on a couple pages on my site. This was a nice addition and a way to monetize several pages that I was struggling to monetize before.
Costs = 283.48 (ramping up promotion)
My current business model is to replicate my “authority” site model every 4-5 months – 1 new site every 4-5 months. In September I took a shortcut to this approach and purchased a website. Since the website was in a similar niche I decided I was going to start promoting the 2 sites in tandem. So this has resulted in a cost increase this month for my student loan site.
My team of writers and VA’s do several activities including finding guest posting opportunities, publishing content, modifying graphics, uploading and syndicating videos.
All my team members are hired through ODesk
- VA #1 – Content Publisher = $23.40 @ (posting/scheduling of created articles per my content calendar)
- VA # 2 – Backlink/General = $11.25 (web 2.0 creation, Link Authority, blog carnival submission, Friday post creation)
- VA #3 – Website Manager = $12 (he takes care of security/speed on all my sites – no work this month)
- VA #4 – Social Media Manager = $0 (not going to use on this project)
- VA #5 – Outreach – $48 (moved onto another assignment)
- Content Creation = $88.88 (30 great articles created)
- Hosting = $80/month @ WPEngine (can host 10 sites)
- LeadPages = $0 one time fee already paid
- AWeber = $19.95 (for the size of list my student loan site has)
Running Net Income/Loss
My net income with this site was a solid $2k again this month. If I can hold $2k steady during the fall that would be a good win for me.
September net income = $2,005.23
Steady $2k/month Income
Traffic =10,262 Unique Visitors
Traffic went down substantially, however, this was expected based on what Google Trends shows for student loans and student loan consolidation.
Email Opt Ins – Working Very Well (35% List Growth)
My email opt-in strategy is continuing to work and my list is growing…however I still have not started leveraging it as much as I should. I am however keeping it “warm” with useful follow up messages and maintaining a solid open rate.
Subscriber growth was 86 on one list and 63 on the other with a drop in the opt in rate.
Content, Promotion and Backlinks
In this section I will show exactly what I have done over the last month to continue to grow my site…
On Page Content = 17 New Posts
All these posts were pre-scheduled a couple months ago and the site is continuing to run on autopilot.
Outreach – Blog Commenting & Social Media
I have finally found a couple great assistants who can do blog commenting and outreach. This is a very challenging activity to outsource and it has taken me a long time to get to a point where I have someone who I can trust to do this job.
3 good guest posts this month all generated from my assistant who is doing the blog commenting and manual outreach.
I use majestic SEO (free) to track my link profile and help estimate how my link building efforts are being viewed by Google.
- Referring Domains = 553 (+105)
- Backlinks = 20,933 (-6,153)
- Citation Flow 31 (-4)
- Trust Flow 21 (+4)
Based on my link profile starting to stagnate and my traffic to higher value keywords starting to decline it is clearly time to get back into the higher touch promotional effort!
Last Month’s Goals
- Integrate purchased site into my promotion strategies – SUCCESS
- Kick Off Several High Touch Promotion Strategies (2 epic posts + outreach) – SUCCESS
- Automate Guest Posting Process (key contractor working – 2 guest posts) – SUCESS
- Automate Social Media (VA working and growing audience’s at both sites social media accounts) – SUCCESS (But not seeing the results!)
- Monetize –Earn over $4,000 per month between current site and purchased site – FAIL ($3k not $4k)
Next Month’s Goals
- 2 Epic/Resource Posts with Manual Outreach & generate natural .edu/.gov links
- Continue with outsourced guest posting (3 guest posts)
- End social media again – not for me right now
- Improve monetization at purchased site
- With steady decline in traffic due to time of year target $2.5k combined income
2013 Website Goal Progress: (33% of the way there!)
My website case study PayMyStudentLoans.com will earn more per month than Pat Flynn’s case study site SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com for at least 3 months of the year
- January (-$2,796.18)
- $452.13 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $3248.31 for SecurityGuardHQ.com - Report
- February (-$1,675.35)
- $1126.55 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,801.90 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- March (-$2,076.94)
- 759.63 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,836.57 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- April (-$1,581.86)
- $1,127.1 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,708.96 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- May (-$367.55)
- $2,341.41 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,610.62 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- June (+1,622.01)
- $3,114.90 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $1,492.89 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- July (-1,013.61)
- $1,540 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,553.61 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Report
- Aug ($-12.10 – SO CLOSE!)
- $2,383.41 for PayMyStudentLoans.com
- $2,395.51 for SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com – Reort(not yet published)
Me vs. Pat Case Study Site
My Overall Online Income Goal Progress
As discussed in my long post about my online income history and my overall business strategy post here my goal is to be making $15k/month reliably by my 35th birthday and move my family back to our hometown to raise our kids(currently only one kid) there.
I am going to add a section to my monthly reports showing my overall online income and progress towards $15k/month.
This month with the purchase of the extra website, some strong results from a giveaway on this site and another site performing well I had a record month!
- Actual = $8,983 net income
- Planned = $3,400 net income
In September I will not be surprised to see the income settle to lower number with one site taking a hit and not having the same promotion occurring this month I did last month here on AuthorityWebsiteIncome.
The overall trend is continuing in the right direction and I am still very confident my current plan will get me there.