A Glimpse of Success

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I started work on my very first niche site on May 30th, less than one month ago. On that day I pretty much just loaded WordPress onto the site, installed a few basic plug-ins and created one page. The next day, May 31st, I created 3 more pages for the site as well as a Disclaimer page and a Privacy Policy page. Keep in mind, when I say I created the pages that is all I did. I created them and hit Publish with NO content on any of the pages. I did this for a couple of reasons:

  1. I am a WordPress beginner and this was the only way I could figure out how to get tabbed page headings on my navigation bar. I now know there are other ways, but haven’t exactly figured out how yet.
  2. I wanted to create a “Welcome” post or “Guide” that explained what the site was about and linked to each separate page. I needed to have the pages created in order to have the permalinks to do that.

So I had this website out there which was an exact match domain for the keyword I was targeting. I had the back end Meta stuff complete as far as page name, description and keywords. I completed the Welcome/Guide post for the home page which was filled with links to my empty pages. Then I let the site sit while I worked on some other stuff. I noticed it was starting to get some traffic and was already ranking as high as #12 in Google.

I then added some content, a short 565 word post, to one of my pages. Again, I let the site sit as I went on vacation for a week. I noticed during my vacation that the traffic was really picking up on a site that virtually had no valuable content yet. It was already ranking at #4 in Google for my primary keyword!

When I got home from vacation, I completed the content for the rest of the pages on the site. My site quickly shot up to #1 in Google for my primary keyword! This was awesome! I couldn’t believe how easy it was to rank my very first niche site at #1 in Google’s SERP. This proved to show that all of my preliminary research and learning over the last few months had paid off.

Beginners Luck?
Over the past week or so, since I’ve completed the content on all pages of my site, I’ve been consistently averaging about 125 page views per day. This is 100% search traffic (minus all the times I’ve opened up the site just to see how it looks). I haven’t promoted this site at all and have done exactly ZERO backlinking. It’s even starting to generate some Adsense clicks! Over this past weekend, the site earned $2.35. I’ve never been more excited than when I saw the first click come through! Wow – this niche site thing can really work.

Keep in mind, I am not expecting to get rich from this niche site. The primary keyword gets only about 2900 searches per month. Based on performance for the sites first full week of completion, I could estimate that this site might earn $10 per month.

I am still planning on improving the site by adding some pictures and maybe some sort of header graphic. Currently the header is just plain text. I might also do some backlinking to try to raise my ranking in the SERP’s for a few of the long-tail keywords. The site is currently at #27 and #49 for two of my main long-tail keywords. By doing this, who knows… maybe I can get my first micro niche site earning $20 per month or even more.

Update: Just before publishing this post, I checked again and found that the site fell from the #1 spot down to #2. Perhaps I will have to do a little backlinking to ensure that it gets back to #1 and stays there. I will see what happens after I make the minor improvements.

Another Dumb Thing I’ve Done
As mentioned above, I created all the pages for this post as “pages” in WordPress. I was unclear on whether I should do this or create them as posts. I was enlightened recently on the topic when I read this article about niche site content by Spencer Haws on his blog, Niche Pursuits. This comment on the article by Ian  really seemed to clear things up for me a bit.

In other words, I was dumb about how to publish the content to my site. Sticking with the theme of this blog, Dumb Passive Income, I am actually creating a little bit of passive income and doing it the dumb way! I am not going to change it on my first niche site since those pages are already indexed, ranking and earning. I’ll just write this one off as part of the learning process.

On the Horizon
With all of this in the past, I am eager now to start on my 2nd niche site. The other domain that I’ve already purchased though might be better suited for more of an authority site. I’ve been doing plenty of preliminary keyword research and have found several good keywords with correlating exact match domains that are available. I have a whole list started!

My next keyword that I am going to target gets 90,000 searches per month! It does have an exact match (.net) domain available and should be fairly easy to get to #1 in Google. This is according to my best estimation via my rookie attempt at first page analysis. Hey, it worked with my first niche site!

That’s about it for this post. In my next post on this blog I want to show you how I am still making an income with my old blog. Yeah, the one I recently quit so I could start this blog and build niche sites. I am basically doing nothing with the old blog, and it is creating income (much to my surprise). That, my friend, is passive income – the dumb way.  Details to come…

Until then, remember that there are several dumb ways to create passive income online, but only one site that is blogging about it! Dumb Passive Income… dot com.

-Matt

  • Matt…how interesting! I am excited for you 🙂

  • Adam Hathaway

    Great job Matt. It is always satisfying to see that research has paid off. Keep us informed.

    • That is the point if this blog – to keep you informed and share what has our hasn’t worked for me. Glad you are following along.

  • Dannielle @ Odd Cents

    I think that’s what I need to do too. You listed some good resources that I’m going to check out.

    • Happy to help Danielle and hope some of what I do can be an inspiration to others. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  • Matt, I just re-read this and it confirms for me what a tremendous loss I’ve suffered with the AdSense ban. I’m now getting a total of about 75-100 uniques average each day (300-400 page views) and I’ve made next to nothing with AdSense alternatives. Keep up the good work! Make sure you have systems in place to monitor AdSense and keep up with their evolving standards.

    • Thanks for the tip Mike! I’m constantly listening to podcasts and reading blogs by others who monetize sites with AdSense. It’s hard to predict what Google is going to do. For example, Pat Flynn recently got “warned” by Google for “blending” his ads with his content, when their advice via tutorials on the AdSense site clearly tell you that blending is one thing you should try to do. Read about it here…
      http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/email-from-google-adsense-account/

      I’m being very careful with AdSense and will always be in fear of something like this happening to me.

      • So. Matt. I just read the above article in response to your comment to Mike and I am thinking perhaps I need to remove my ‘AdSense’ which I had just reinstated to my blog. As you know I had it up for several months and made under $5.00 so I took it off but I thought perhaps now, with more traffic, I might see better results. What is your take on this?

        • PastorGigi, I recommend that you take a look at my analysis of what might have happened to cause my ban http://livetheneweconomy.com/blog/2012/5/1/making-sense-of-the-adsense-situation.html, as well as the SPI link above, and then make up your mind. If you are making small potatoes, my opinion is to save it until you really build up traffic. There are just too many people getting banned and I’ve appealed twice and have not been able to get it reinstated. Just my $.02. Matt might see it differently. At the very least, have some alternatives already approved (Infolinks, Chitika, MediaNet, etc.).

          • Thanks for your input Mike..will check it out, thanks:)

          • I just read Mike’s article on why he got banned from Adsense. If you are going to continue to use Adsense, just make sure you know and understand all of their rules. Mike pointed out several things that he did that are clearly frowned upon in Google’s Adsense Terms of Service agreement.

            My take? I know that making money isn’t your #1 purpose with your blog Pastor GiGi, but I would leave it up anyway. You probably won’t get rich from Adsense, but by leaving it up your readers will be used to seeing ads on your site. As your site gains popularity and readership you may start to get offers for private advertising. If you choose to put up ad blocks from private advertisers, your regular readers will think nothing of it. Make sense?

            Or, if you really are hoping to increase your Adsense clicks – play around with different ad placement locations on the page, different ad blocks, different colors on your ads, etc. This is something that can be researched and you really just need to experiment to find what works best for you.

          • Thanks Matt. After reading Mike’s article I opted for removal of the Adsense, for now. I shall continue to follow your blog for other financial insight. Thanks. 🙂

          • Probably not a bad move. I’ve found that regular blog readers are generally not ad clickers anyway. The people who click on ads are mostly people who would get to your site via search engines. People searching for answers on specific topics.

            I made less than $20 from Adsense over the course of 2 years with all of my various blogs – and that was with a ton of content! I’m already seeing the benefits of having a very focused niche site on a particular topic. With only a few pages of content, the clicks are already starting to come in.

  • Matt – good stuff. Been doing better than expected with my first attempt as well. Ready to try and replicate the success.

    • Great stuff Survivor Mike! Good luck with your replication. Check back and let me know how it goes.

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  • navin

    Hi Matt, great post! I’m going through all your blogs. I was wondering where did you learn your wordpress skills? 🙂 Thanks again!

    • All of my WordPress skills are completely self-taught. When I couldn’t figure something out on my own, I would just Google it or look it up on YouTube. Never fails. There is always somebody who had the same issue before me and you can always find advice and tutorials.

      Good Day!

      Matthew Allen
      Dumb Passive Income