Join the Niche Pursuits Insider Community Today!Sign Up Here!

4 Key Strategy Differences Between Small Niche Sites and Authority Sites

4 Key Strategy Differences Between Small Niche Sites and Authority Sites
Yes! I Love to Learn

Want to learn step-by-step how I built my Niche Site Empire up to a full-time income?

Before I jump into my blog post today, I first want to point out my new site design!  I started NichePursuits.com on a WordPress theme that cost me about $37 and a logo that I part paid for and part hacked together.

That theme and logo did very well for me for about 4 years, but I've finally updated the site last night.  I'm very happy with the new look and some of the cool features that the site now offers.

I'll dedicate a full post to the new design and how it impacts conversions, time on site, load time, traffic, and more.  And of course if you are reading this a few months or years after November 2014, then this intro has been completely pointless for you…my bad 🙂

Overall, I have been making a lot of shifts in my business.  The one that I have discussed the most is my shift from focusing on building lots of smaller niche sites to building just one larger niche site (authority site).

I've focused a lot of time and energy on this blog with the Niche Site Project 1 and 2.  Now that I'm focusing on an authority site, is all that information from previous projects no longer valid?  Absolutely not!

In fact, the huge majority of everything I've written on this blog is still very applicable.  However, there are some key differences (with link building in particular) that I want to point out.

Overall, I want to discuss what tactics and techniques still apply for both small niche sites and authority sites.  Let's jump in…

What Still Works for Both Small Sites and Authority Sites?

When I look back at the old content I wrote for Niche Site Project 1 (my survival knife site), I was surprised to see that the content is still very applicable for the most part.  Out of the 27 posts written for that project, I wouldn't change anything written in 24.  In other words, only 3 of the 27 posts have some information that needs to be updated.

In the second Niche Site Project (apennyshaved.com), 21 out of the 25 posts are still great information.  Basically, the only posts that are out of date is the link building posts…and this recent post pretty much sums up why.

Overall, the strategy is actually quite similar between the two.  However, there are some key differences that I will discuss below.

So, here's a few things that have not changed.

Keyword research is still pretty much the same.  Whether you are building a small niche site or a large authority site, you still want to be finding long tail keywords that are easy to rank for.  I've harped on this pretty hard, and all my posts shared about keyword research are still great training ground.

For content creation, you still need to be creating valuable and original content.  This remains unchanged.  I've shared multiple posts on this subject in my previous projects.

You still want a brandable domain, not an exact match domain.

Believe it or not, I actually covered outreach and guest posting quite a bit in the 2nd niche site project. This type of link building still works.

So, in a nutshell nearly everything I covered in the past during the niche site projects about keyword research, content production, branding, and even some link building is still what you want to be doing for an authority site.

However, as you know, there are some key differences as well.

4 Differences Between Niche and Authority Sites

The 4 primary differences in an authority site strategy is thinking of the overall market, a couple of content changes, link building, and traffic sources.

1. Market Research

When you build an authority site, you want to make sure you are entering a market that is big enough.  This usually is not an issue; however, it definitely needs to be considered.

For example, the niche site built for niche site project one about survival knives was maybe big enough, but a shift to the overall survival market instead of just knives would have been ideal.  This shift could have been made with a simple domain change.

However, aPennyShaved.com is just fine as is for an authority site.  We picked a great market, shaving, that has lots of related products and keywords.  Don't believe me that shaving is a big enough market to build an authority site on?  Tell that to Eric Bandholdz of BeardBrand.com that is making over $100,000 a month.

He was just on Shark Tank last week and revealed those numbers.

I'll dive deeper in a future post about market research.  However, in a nutshell, you just want to make sure there are lots of related keywords with good search volumes.  What you don't want to do is box your site into to only covering a topic like “best racoon bait” or some other narrow market.

2. Content Differences

I mentioned previously that keyword research for an authority site is exactly the same, and that's true.  However, as Gael Breton mentioned in my recent podcast, only about 50% of your content might be focused on keywords.  The other 50% is likely going to be focused more on shareable topics.

Brian Dean has shared his skyscraper technique for how you can produce the other 50% of your content that is not as keyword focused.  This is a fantastic was to not only produce great content, but to also garner great white hat links.

The other key focus with content is quality for an authority site.  I have always stated this, even in my niche site projects, but its even more critical with authority sites.  You need to be creating content that will stand the test of time, and truly is valuable to the readers.

This might entail writing longer articles (Perrin and I write 3,000 word articles for our authority site project),  or it just might mean providing a better resource than is currently on the web.  For an authority site, it's not just about trying to rank in Google, its about trying to actually help people.

3. Link Building

This is a big change.  The idea behind most smaller niche sites is to do whatever it takes to rank quickly in Google, and then move onto the next site.  For me and many others, this often involved using Private Blog Networks, link building services, or other tactics that we clearly knew Google didn't approve of.

The draw of these link building tactics is that sometimes they work…quite well.  However, they can be short lived and have almost always ended with a penalty for me and others.  I no longer recommend using Private Blog Networks for any site, and made that quite clear in this blog post.

The name of the game is now content marketing.  Producing great content and shareable content can go a long way is getting great links.  Perrin and I have been implementing this content plus outreach strategy, and it's working quite well.

I will most certainly be diving deeper into this subject; but for now, here's a few resources for link building for authority sites:

The biggest change is the focus away from trying to trick Google to rank, to trying to create valuable and shareable content so that people want to link to you more naturally.

4. Traffic Sources

Another big shift with a niche site vs. an authority site is where the traffic comes from.  With a smaller niche site most people get 90% plus of their traffic from Google.  This is often the only focus: rank in Google and get that free traffic!

However, with an authority site you have the opportunity to diversify that traffic a bit.  So, even if you don't rank as well as you'd hoped in Google, you should still be able to have plenty of site visitors.  At least that's the goal.

Matt Paulson described his strategies in depth for getting traffic from places other than Google in our recent podcast interview.  A few traffic sources that you can tap into outside of search engines include:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Youtube
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Google News
  • Yahoo News
  • Referral Traffic
  • Paid Traffic
  • Direct Traffic
  • Email list traffic
  • Other

Perrin and I have seen some pretty nice results by just focusing a little bit on Reddit recently.  This is a huge topic that I'll try to discuss more and more as Perrin and I get further along in our authority site project.

Overall, it's no longer just about ranking in Google for a couple of keywords and hoping they stick.  Yes, you should still be doing keyword focused content perhaps 50% of the time, but there are so many other places you can get traffic from as well.

What's Your Take?

I felt like it was important to compare some of the similarities and differences between a small niche site and authority site as I go forward with this project.  By no means does an authority site mean you have to forget everything you knew about building niche sites.

In fact, if you have an existing niche site, it's very possible to work on that site and apply some of these changes to turn it into more of an authority site.  Overall, it's time to just think a bit bigger with the market, think longer term with link building and content, and expand your traffic sources.

Perrin and I are still early on with this authority site project; however, we'll begin sharing more specific tactics that are working for us in the near future.  Now that we have our heads pointing in the same direction for how things have changed slightly we can move forward with confidence.

As always, I'd love to hear your take on the subject.  Do you have any questions?  Any other points you would like to bring up in regards to the differences between niche and authority sites?

Yes! I Love to Learn

Want to learn step-by-step how I built my Niche Site Empire up to a full-time income?

Related Projects:

105 Comments for this Post

  1. Oloyede Jamiu

    Oloyede Jamiu

    Hey Spenser,

    This new design is really cool.

    I love it.

    Congrats.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Thanks Oloyede!

      • Huguens M.

        Huguens M.

        Wow, what a mind blowing design you got there Spencer. Congratulations!

  2. Velin Naydenov

    Velin Naydenov

    Hey, Spencer! Thank you for the shared strategies, great post as always. By the way, congrats on the new design, I’ve checked your website earlier today and I’ve noticed the changes, it looks great!

  3. Dan

    Dan

    Loving the new design, Spencer!

  4. Jon

    Jon

    Hey Spencer,

    Authority is the way to go as far as I’m concerned. They’re more fun and when you hit big numbers, more opportunities open up big time such as more advertisers, more email subscribers (email newsletters become more and more valuable, social channels grow and turn into huge traffic sources… plus authority grows with the search engines making organic traffic easier and more plentiful with less work.

    I have one niche site that hit over 1 million page views in 8 months by publishing epic articles and embracing social media like crazy. The viral component of the content reduced my cost per visitor so low that I can repeatedly invest in paid traffic to kickstart traffic to a new post and from there let sharing and viral activity really crank up the volume.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Great to hear your success Jon! Love hearing stories like yours.

  5. Philip Kleudgen

    Philip Kleudgen

    Great new design Spencer! Looks good, we’ll see how it works for social and conversions.

    I launched my new blog just yesterday and had a blog “go viral” just today! I used a modified version of the skyscraper technique and already got 36 social shares on this article which I consider very nice for the first day it is online!

    Good luck for your new design,

    Philip

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      That’s great…congrats on the first viral success of your site.

  6. Marc

    Marc

    New design is cool. I have 3-5 page sites where the content is pretty good and they rank and make sales. These are product specific sites. The review page is 750+ words. Never got penalized and I don’t back link. My main keywords which are the name of my site(domain) are pretty long tail which means very low competition target keywords. All sites promote Amazon products.

    Yes even 3-5 page micro niche sites rank well and make money.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Yep, no one said they didn’t. Just lots more potential with a larger site.

  7. Daniel Flucke

    Daniel Flucke

    The new design looks fantastic! I’m looking forward to the post about creating it.

  8. Craig Hewitt

    Craig Hewitt

    Spencer,

    Do you think a single authority site is a viable long term business model? If so what would you expect from one after 12 months of work? I know that some guys are making a fortune off of their sites, but there’s some inherent risk with putting all of your eggs in one basket. I’d imagine that having multiple sources of income from that site would mitigate that risk somewhat (ads, affiliate, products, etc.). Just be interested to get your thoughts in this change. Thanks.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Yes. If you only get traffic from Google, that is all your eggs in one basket. If you diversify your traffic sources, that is spreading the risk.

  9. Stuart Walker

    Stuart Walker

    Spencer and Perrin,

    Site is looking great and love the re-design. IMO it was long overdue. I found the last theme a bit dated looking and the font really small and not so easy to read. This looks great.

    I’m going to have to update my blogs theme too, been meaning to do it for ages.

    Good post too…

    “Whether you are building a small niche site or a large authority site, you still want to be finding long tail keywords that are easy to rank for.”

    I don’t necessarily agree with this. I don’t think for an authority blog you really need to be hunting out long tails at all.

    It can’t hurt to rank for some (which you will do naturally anyway when putting out lots of in-depth content) or sprinkle some in to posts after writing where it makes sense to do so I don’t think an authority site posts should be based around long tail keywords and aimed at search engines.

    Write for your readers first and foremost.

    Use techniques like the skyscraper technique or BuzzSumo to find popular content and use the “three B’s” of content marketing…Bigger, Better and more Beautiful to create guaranteed viral content.

    Find common questions from your target audience (by asking them or going to forums where they hang out) and answer those topics better than anyone else has…I mean if so many people are constantly asking them obviously people aren’t doing a good job at answering it.

    Or even better find similar questions on the 1 subject and turn into ultimate guides where you nail the topic once and for all.

    All this mixed with a healthy dose of networking and outreach will see you right.

    You will pick up Google traffic and you’ll pick up links and social shares and your content will undoubtedly be much better than content based around long tail keywords which are often awkward and don’t make good post topics.

    I’m not saying ignore Google. But definitely write for your readers first and Google second.

    Anyway, great new design. Looks fantastic.

  10. Dave

    Dave

    Killer new design, look super fresh now!

  11. Jason

    Jason

    Much easier to read. Very nice!

  12. Raj Vasireddy

    Raj Vasireddy

    What a nice refreshing change Spencer, Colors, logo, social media sharing options and all other stuff fits perfect for Niche Pursuits blog and your personality.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Thanks Raj…I had a great designer 🙂

  13. Al-Amin Kabir

    Al-Amin Kabir

    Hi Spencer, the new design is awesome! Loved it!

  14. IMPromoCoder

    IMPromoCoder

    Spencer, congrats on the new design, I know it’s a tough move, I’m postponing it myself for ages.
    I would like to say though, that although it’s a nice update, I don’t like the new design too much – the header is huge and the content is sooo much below the folder. The menus are a bit thin to me, making it harder to navigate between sections. There’s something about simple\ugly designs that helps to convert, I’m not sure this design will increase your conversions, but time will tell. I’m sure the theme we see now will go through quite a few changes before it will settle.
    Looking forward to read authority site updates, especially about your reddit experience.
    Cheers and best of luck again!

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Thanks for the feedback. A redesign is not easy, but I’m very happy with it. The early signs are very good for conversions, but I’ll be monitoring and let the numbers make any final changes.

  15. daveM

    daveM

    I do like the new design!! Bright and fresh appearance.

    I am thinking that the new site will allow you to do a lot more as your focus will be narrower…. you will have more ideas and will be able to move on them more quickly. (maybe you will have to recruit Nina’s sister).

    I really appreciate your disclosure of the ups and downs in your business, a lot of bloggers reveal only what they want to sell and there is no ‘person’ involved. Your approach to develop the relationship is soooooo great.

    Thanks for your instructive efforts.!

    daveM

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Thanks Dave! Had to chuckle when you mentioned Nina’s sister…not even sure if she has one! 🙂

  16. Karl Steinemeyer

    Karl Steinemeyer

    Lov it spencer – very clean and fast.

  17. marbles

    marbles

    Loving the new design. Would love a mini-post on how to find a designer, how to interview the designer, and what the process was like.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Definitely plan on doing an in-depth post about the redesign…I’ll try to include your questions.

  18. Sebastian

    Sebastian

    Love the new design Spencer! Well done. And I see you are getting into content upgrades as well? 🙂 I found it to be an awesome way to get highly targeted emails on my site!

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Yep, added the content upgrades. Thanks!

  19. Fran

    Fran

    Hey Spencer, I just read the Eric’s article at BeardBrand.com and thought it important to point out that he isn’t MAKING over $100,000 a month, he is TAKING that in turnover. Unfortunately he doesn’t share his profit margins. A lot in the IM markets tend to band turnover figures out as if their profits which can be very misleading. Don’t get me wrong, $100K turnover it is still very impressive for an online business selling beard products, although I’d be more interested to know what the profit was.

    I’m loving your new site design looks great by the way. And stellar info in the post as always!!

    Best, Fran

    • Taylor Hendricksen

      Taylor Hendricksen

      Hey Fran, Eric was actually just on Shark Tank (the NBC show), and on there, revealed that they are pulling around 25% margins overall, and around 90% on their beard oil specifically. I actually know him personally, and also know the company has 3 founders they are sharing profits between, and doing quite a bit of paid advertising for customer acquisition, so it’s not all just content marketing.

      • Fran

        Fran

        Thanks for sharing that info Taylor. So Eric’s personal profit is around $10k per month. It’s a cool achievement for him and his partners. Just not quite the dream of $100k. Hats off to them though, it’s a great site too.

  20. Daniel

    Daniel

    New design is hard to navigate. Hate to say it but I’m probably not going to read much longer if I can’t go back to old posts easily.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      I’ll be adding an link to all old posts soon in navigation, and I’ll get a search function up.

  21. isaac guerrero

    isaac guerrero

    Hey love the new look…….. its more easy to read

  22. Mohit Anand

    Mohit Anand

    Great design, Spencer. Did your designer built a new theme that can be your next product? 😀
    Looking nice on my mobile.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Thanks Mohit! Its a custom theme, but just for me 🙂

  23. David McGregor

    David McGregor

    Hi Spencer.

    I just discovered your site a few days ago, and I’m hooked. I couldn’t sleep last night from all the ideas churning around in my head.

    I am taking a similar approach to your current one, in that I plan to take my time and build a fairly large authority site. I’ve used LongTailPro to analyse the competition and think I can do a better job than the site currently ranked #1.

    I have two questions if I may:
    1. I am targeting a range of products that sell for only around $20 each. I noticed that in your survival knife guide case study, people were buying knives for over $100. Obviously with higher priced products means larger commission. With that said, should I try to focus on products that sell for more money?

    2. I’m in the UK. If I were to use Amazon Affiliates, does that mean I can only focus on customers who are in the UK. People in the UK use amazon.co.uk, therefore I can’t direct people to .com (and vice versa). Any experience with this?

    The new design looks great! Thanks for all the information. I’m learning a lot.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      1. No, not necessarily. I’ve known a few people that do well selling higher volume, lower cost products.
      2. I know as a US citizen, I was able to get approved for Amazon UK, Canada, and some others. I assume you can do the same for US, etc.

  24. Kashif

    Kashif

    Splendid theme, Spencer. Is it a custom job or an off-the-shelf product?

  25. Masks_Leo

    Masks_Leo

    Spencer,

    Absolutely love the new site layout. This looks extremely professional and high quality.

    I’d love to hear how you decided to go with this color scheme and format. Did you do some testing? Was it based on other people’s research? If so, I’d love to hear,

    Thanks,

    -Leo

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Leo, a lot of the color choices were based of my old site and logo. Many of the colors were used in my previous logo/header…we just took it to a whole other level obviously. We are testing how the design itself improves conversions, etc.

  26. Travis

    Travis

    Great job on the new design!

    I look forward to reading about your journey building an authority site and I’ll be building one along with you. I just purchased a domain last week in a niche that interests me a lot and has a growing market. It is a nice brandable two-word domain that already has over 3,000 backlinks from 160+ domains. Should be a nice jump start to my new brand. I slapped a couple pages up while I’m working on some other stuff and already got my first four email subscribers!

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Sounds great…nice start Travis!

  27. Jenda

    Jenda

    Oh, I love it!
    Love the flat design, color combination – and the right sidebar with your tools?! Yeah, that looks sick!
    (Not to mention the popup for your e-mail list! Could you tell me how is it done? :P)

    At the moment I’m building authority site as well and I simply love the fact that we are on the same page! When I first saw Brian’s Skyscraper technique and Gael’s content on authority sites, I was like: “Why we haven’t done this stuff in the first place?!” It just seems as the right way to go! 🙂

    Keep it up, Spencer! Looking forward to reading more about for yours and Perrin’s site!

  28. Samuel

    Samuel

    This design is bad ass Spencer! Looks really good!

    I agree with you Spencer. Content marketing is definitely a long term strategy. I don’t have the energy or the patience anymore to worry about what will happen to my site after an algo change. It’s just not worth going through all that stress.

    One thing I’ve noticed in SEO is what may work for you may not work for me. Especially if I do SEO exactly the same way you are doing it. So many factors involved. There are SEO gurus who teach short term tactics for short term gains and kind of balk at using long term strategies like content marketing for more consistent steadier growth. I guess they are appealing to an audience who want to make money fast and are not interested in building a business.

  29. Steve

    Steve

    Just another, “love the new design, guys!” comment!

  30. John

    John

    Many of the Amazon niche site followers before misunderstood the letter B in PBN … though people talks more about the letter P ..

    Now the shift to Authority sites may bring the same followers into misunderstanding the word ” Authority ” …
    On my experienced an ” experienced writer ” compare to a ” person on that field ” a.k.a. Authority can produce very helpful written, video, graphics, etc. and has been known offline for being Authority for that Field …

    For me, its not a shift of what type of website we are going to create but a shift in the PERSON who will create the content of that specific website … because with his offline authority …. comes an easy link building opportunity that you don’t even have to reach out ..

  31. joseph

    joseph

    Wow I liked the new design ! Congrats.. Is easier to read now on mobile!

  32. Naveen

    Naveen

    Hi Spencer, I saw your new design yesterday itself and my first impressions were that the site looked like thinktraffic site for a while, then the features here are great and user friendly.

    Again, any change takes some time to sink in, your old design was clean and easy to consume. Nevertheless, we all know that change is the only constant. Cheers !

  33. Hung Pham

    Hung Pham

    Very very cool! I love it 🙂

  34. Brent C

    Brent C

    Spencer. Love the new look of the site. This definitely feels like a more ‘modern’ theme. I didn’t mind your old site, but this is much sleeker.

    A quick note – I am viewing it on an IPad Air and the social buttons on the left edge/border appear to be cut off. This may just be a glitch on my browser but wanted to give you a heads up.

    Keep the posts/podcasts coming!

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Cool. And thanks for the heads up. Can you let me know if you are zoomed in at all? (On a windows laptop for example you can zoom in using ctrl +.

      • Brent C

        Brent C

        I am all the way zoomed out. I see the right half of the share boxes but not enough of them to see the counts. I can technically still click on them, but not able to see what I’m clicking on.

        • Spencer Haws

          Spencer Haws

          Ok, we’ll look into it…thanks for checking!

  35. Ronny

    Ronny

    Yesterday when I visit your site I simply click the X button because I only see a bit gigantic header.

    Silly me…

    I have to scroll down to find the content 😀

  36. yskan

    yskan

    Congrats on the new design. However, I would make the navigation menu a sticky menu.

  37. Hieu Luong

    Hieu Luong

    Congratulations for you! New design is very nice. I love it.
    Developing Authority site is a trend in the future.
    Thanks for a valuable article.

  38. George N.

    George N.

    Hey Spencer,

    Great new design, I like it. I’m looking forward to reading more posts on your authority site project

  39. nicholas

    nicholas

    hey spencer your new design is very cool clean and real easy to navigate.thanks for all the awesome content you put out.

  40. Stu

    Stu

    Spencer, I love the site design. I have an authority site in a relatively newer niche that I am working on monetizing with my own products and services.

    If you have covered this on another post I apologize in advance.

    I am looking to network with other authority site builders in other niches to compare and contrast, share techniques and improve accountability. Whether this is in a mastermind format or something else with regular meetings with those doing the same journey with their sites that I am with mine any guidance would be appreciate. thanks.

    Stu

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      I don’t have a specific place to point you; although forums is a great place to start usually.

  41. Juanita

    Juanita

    I have a habit of rolling out of bed, grabbing my phone, and pulling up blogs that I really like before starting my day. (you replaced Smart Passive Income, just to let you know lol). And I honestly thought that my phone had defaulted to the ‘mobile’ version or something like that. had no idea until just now that you did a complete redesign! it looks great!!

  42. Yolette

    Yolette

    I love the new feel… invites me to stick around and enjoy your content. Great color choice and typography. Continued best wishes!

  43. annonymous

    annonymous

    i have tears in my eyes when i suddenly saw my most trusted blog change the design …honestly…i have started reading in 2011…i think i had only 5 or 6 comments the whole time…and was so used to the old design..and i hate change… hopefully this will not affect your rankings…and it sucks that we have to go back to the authority route again as a new trend…eventhough lisa from 2createawebsite and problogger etc were shouting about the authority model way back in 2009 and 10…..it sucks that i was excited to find this blog and thought that i could make money in 3 monthes …and read read and read about seo without action…analysis paralysis ….only to discover in the end after years of studying …that quick buck seo is dead….

  44. Somesh Rao

    Somesh Rao

    Spencer, The new site looks awesome.

    Only one issue, if you see the big square “Nicher Pursuits” forces content to be below the fold. You should cut that down.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      The “big square” Niche Pursuits was only for this post…if you look at other posts the content is above the fold. I was just showcasing the new logo/design for this post.

  45. Jack

    Jack

    Hey Spencer,I am a newbie to your blog.I have learned more from your article.Thank you for giving the great contents to us .
    And ,the new desgin is great but I think I need more time to get used to it.
    Thank you again !

  46. Jon

    Jon

    I usually read your site from my phone. This design is definitely more mobile friendly than last!

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Yep, it sure is! I was slacking on the previous design big time 🙂

  47. Kimberly

    Kimberly

    Great new look! Love the colors.

    Quick question when picking key words: do we need to consider competition for page links and juice page links or just juice page links?

    Kimberly

  48. Yaro

    Yaro

    Hey Spencer,

    I love this widgets styles on the right: “Grab the Tools I Use For” and “Popular, Latest, Random” widgets.
    Are they came with the theme?

    Thanks,
    Yaro

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Well, the theme is 100% custom, so are the widgets.

  49. rj

    rj

    Nice change- I bit of a shock though. Looking forward to the Reddit post (if any)

  50. David

    David

    Very nice design Spencer, congrats!

  51. praveen

    praveen

    Hey spencer,

    Any chance of telling us your authority site url, keen to see the progress on day to day basis

  52. Asif

    Asif

    Great design. Always read the posts in Pocket app because of the tiny fonts here on the site.
    But now it’s really refreshing to read them here only.

  53. Amir

    Amir

    Hi Spencer,
    Great design! I love reading your posts and get inspired again and again.

  54. Leo

    Leo

    Hi Spencer,
    Are EMD penalized now? I’ve just found a “keyword”,(4 words phrase to be honest :)), for my very first niche website and the EDM dot com domain is available, should I go for it or choose a brandable domain?
    Also, I like the new clean design, if only the comments dates were visible, I think it’s helpful ^^

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      I would go with a brandable domain.

  55. Sf

    Sf

    Thanks for this great info!

  56. Philip

    Philip

    1st – I will congratulate you for the new design, its amazing.
    2nd – You should not give up on apennyshaved, is it possible to de-index it and publish that content on a fresh domain which has no PBN links. (I have been inspired by apennyshaved to create my project)
    3rd – In my experience, creating an authority site you have to think about users first and search engines 2nd, but give both parties what they deserve, because most users get to a site via search.

  57. Philip

    Philip

    I have looked at the widgets, you have done some thing great, you don’t force a product on a user, I wish there is a way of getting such widgets, may be you can put (get this widget) and we pay for it.

  58. Ryan @ TrustedSiteSeller.com

    Ryan @ TrustedSiteSeller.com

    Nice article Spencer! It seems that there really isn’t much difference between a quality niche site and authority sites except for the broadness of the subject and the method of obtaining links. Thanks for contrasting the main points.

    Design – I’m loving the new colors and the inner pages, but to be honest I’m a bit put off by the homepage design being one giant lead capture. I’d much rather have the homepage be easily navigated and provide useful information about content without having to scroll down the page. I’m sure the new page will convert more email addresses, but keep in mind the user experience the return users are getting when they land on the homepage.

    Looking forward to the blog post on the site design.

  59. Kevin @ Website Hike

    Kevin @ Website Hike

    First off, awesome post and to the point. 🙂

    With the whole link building thing, I honestly do none (besides blog commenting, and that is because I am being relevant in discussions). I haven’t done any PBN or link building for keywords, and now I am on the top of the second page for some of my keywords (500-1000 searches per month) and some I am even ranking as #10. Without ANY links, it’s all due to keyword research and creating 2k word posts and sharing it with others.

    Anyways, loved the post.

  60. Kevin @ Website Hike

    Kevin @ Website Hike

    Secondly, where is your email subscription box???? 0.0

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      I assume this was a joke 🙂

  61. Mel

    Mel

    It looks like authority sites are really the only way to go about keeping something for the long term. Oh well, looks like I’ll have to work hard after all.

    Keep up the great work, Spencer. I’m liking the new design, by the way! 🙂

  62. L.J

    L.J

    Such a cool new design ! Also, much more user-friendly on mobile 🙂

    Is it bad of me to say I’m happy PBN and link building (the bad way) aren’t “in” anymore ? In the past I put off a lot of projects because that was something I never wanted to do myself, and didn’t want to hire someone to do it for me (for fear of niche poaching).

    Good old fashioned content marketing on the other hand is something I’m a huge proponent of and love seeing all the puzzles fall in place. So I am happy to see you highlight it here, along with emphasizing *useful and helpful* content 🙂

    Looks like I’ll be dusting off my “possible niche topics” folder in G Drive!

    Thanks for another great post!
    -L.J.

  63. Daniel

    Daniel

    Great article. I’m a newbie to internet marketing (I have yet to create a site) however I’ve been doing my research. I’m trying to figure out if I should go with a niche site instead of choosing a topic too broad (sounds like this is the way to go) but I’m confused on keywords. On your niche site apennyshaved.com you said that you used the keywords “best safety razor” on another post of yours. I thought that you used different keywords on every post that you create? For example for http://www.apennyshaved.com/beard-grooming-tips-for-beginners/ I figured the keywords you targeted was “grooming tips for beginners”, and you would do this on each post. Is this not the case? You use keywords for your entire website as well? Or is this just the keywords for the main page and then you create keywords for each page there after?

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      You are correct. Each article targets a different keyword. The keyword “best safety razor” was only targeted on the one page/article.

      • ko

        ko

        How embarassing..I am new to this though tkeyword refferred to a signluar word. I wondered how people were doign keyword reserch on singular words and beign successful. …but from reading this I see “keyword” can mean more than a singular word. Sorry bit off topic but I figure no question is a stupid question , only the ones that don’t get asked (and the keyword thing is one I was goign to ask)

        • Spencer Haws

          Spencer Haws

          That’s correct. A keyword could be one word or 10 words+ in length.

  64. Tal

    Tal

    Great post!
    But I am learning now all about IM and I wonder if the old method still works, do small targeted websites targeting a few long tail keywords still work? Selling ads / ebooks etc..

    And If “authority sites” are the way of the future:
    1. How would you define an authority site in the matter of posts / articles?
    2. As I see it and please correct me if I am wrong, this type of websites demands big involvement not only in the matter of IM, but actually in the matter of knowing and researching the targeted market inside out, otherwise you won’t be able to create the great content you’re talking about.

    I am not so sure, but I feel that the old school websites might still work well (if done in the right way), but what really changed is you guys (You, Perrin, pat…): you learnt, experienced, evolved and ready to get bigger projects… Just a feeling after reading all of you..
    Again, great post.

    • Spencer Haws

      Spencer Haws

      Yep, we’ve definitely evolved…the bigger projects have much more upside. You can still build small sites, that’s can still work just fine.

  65. Nitrous Marketing San Diego

    Nitrous Marketing San Diego

    Dig the design!

    Blackhat techniques are pretty much dead, some still work but I don’t see them lasting very long. Lot of adaptation to our strategies but we are crushing it for some of our clients. Nice break down!

  66. Jason Roth

    Jason Roth

    Hi Spencer, Will you be doing an “Authority Site Project 1” like your niche sites public projects?

Comments are closed.
css.php