Website Income

One Year Six Figure Challenge Update – Systems Saved My Ass

This post will include an update on my website for my six figure challenge I launched last year, the process I used to build up the site and my

  1. The Six Figure Challenge History
  2. Results
    1. Traffic
    2. Income
  3. My Activities
    1. Month by Month (posts, guest posts, PBN, 301 Building Blocks,
  4. How You Can Follow The Same Formula

Although I certainly failed on turning this site into a six figure business I did manage to “achieve” the goal of building a six figure business after starting in September!


Six Figure Challenge History

Reason Why:

This website was founded as a case study for me building up an authority site in the student loan space which has continued to make thousands of dollars a month since 2012. Building and sharing the journey is a lot of fun and the reason exists. For that reason I made the goal of building a six figure value website within the year in 2015…meaning if it was making $5k/month it would be worth $100k.

The Idea:

My plan was going to be a little unique and that was to have a group of people with the same goal work through the process with me.

The Team:

Having over 80 applicants in under 48hrs was impressive! But even more impressive was the quality of the applicants! Many with exceptional experience and success to date.

The team I selected had a great mix!

It was a lot of fun working with this group of impressive individuals, many of whom went on to have huge successes in 2015!

Our Process:

We met a couple times a week on Google+ hangout at the start and then weekly after that. We went through my Authority Site Attack plan document (sign up in the opt in box on the side to access it).

Meetings Died Off:

100% my fault but after a few months I got into a very busy period at my day job and both the additional work I was putting into the site and our weekly meeting started to die off. Many of the people continued to meet and help each other through the process.

For me I really enjoyed the mastermind format as a group working together to build something. I was certainly not comfortable anytime I was to be the “authority” and “teach” something. But in general the group made the experience fun and held everyone accountable to progress.



Six Figure Challenge – Results

The nice thing about this project was that although it did not achieve the goals I was after with it, it certainly achieved success!

Traffic Results:

As you can see from the curve below the site was on a very steady climb week over week for much of the sites existence with the highest traffic week being just last week!


Income Results:

Definitely an area for improvement both in terms of actual results and my effort in this area to improve the monetization!

  • Jan – (-$855) net income
  • Feb – (-$964) net income
  • Mar – (-$130) net income
  • April – $107 net income
  • May – $158 net income
  • June – $162 net income
  • July – $142 net income
  • Aug – $258 net income
  • Sep – $453 net income
  • Oct – $521 net income
  • Nov – $554 net income
  • Dec – $612 net income

Growth & Other Stats

  • The first six months the growth average over 100% each month
  • The second six months the growth of the site averaged over 20% each month
  • Value of the site now should be in the $10k ballpark with lots of opportunity to improve conversions (I really need to get on!)
  • Net Income over the year positive by only $1,050
  • Growth trajectory stable and promising

Six Figure Challenge – How Did I Build & Promote The Site

So what was the strategy I used to start building out my site? Well you can signup to see the exact attack plan I have used for this and other sites in the sidebar opt-in, however I quickly adjusted my plans when I had to re-prioritize my hours in March.

To show you exactly what I did and when I did it to build up this moderately successful authority site have a look below.

I believe you will be surprised at how few items I focused on and how few hrs I worked on this project…

6figure-sequence 6figure-stats

Notes about stats & the sites activity:

  • Positive growth in every month except Dec (with the last two weeks being holidays!)
  • Expenses were a little lower for me since I already had a moderately relevant PBN to generate some of the links from
  • 301 building block strategy was used extensively at the start to get the site moving well!
    • 301 Building Block details here & here
  • Revenue has not grown at the same rate as the traffic to the site (more work needed)
  • Lots and lots of quality posts were created!
  • Consistency with the strategy of keyword research, content creation and quality link creation was key to sustaining momentum
  • Invested only 96hrs in the project (working on the site) more with the weekly meetings at the start
  • My hours dropped off to 0 at times
  • Assuming the business is worth 20x at $500/month my hrly rate of return was $114.47/hr (20x $500 + sum of net income to date)


#1 Most Important Take Away – Have a plan and consistently execute the plan!

Although the results are not what I wanted they do show the value of a system.  Often we struggle with too many unfinished projects when a competing priority takes over some of our time. This project had all the makings of a project that could follow that path…in Jan/Feb I put in good effort and then in March when my time got a little too stretched I dropped this project like a bag of bricks!

If it had not been for my system of ongoing content creation and automatic link generation my site would have died a slow all to common death!

Although my systems are what kept the site moving the key reason I believe I didn’t achieve larger success and meet my goal was my inability to get the right people in place to execute the higher level outreach work! White hat links are great however they take a higher level skill set that involves more hands on involvement usually from myself…so far I have been unable to systematize higher level outreach/link building beyond simple blog commenting and guest posting.

If anyone has figured out a way to perform high level outreach as part of building an authority site that doesn’t involve their own input please share in the comments!!


How Can You Follow The Same Formula?

Even if you want to have a much greater success you can still use the same strategy easily using the six figure attack plan spreadsheet I share by signing up to the email form below…

About the Author Jon

I am a 33 year old husband, father of 3, engineer and a huge fan of developing systems to build useful and profitable websites. The reason I build online businesses is to provide financial independence for my family and yours AND so I can spend time outside skiing and biking with my family.
Jon Gillham, Online Entrepreneur

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