Finally, its time for another monthly income report for my site, BestSurvivalKnifeGuide.com! Here we are sitting in the second half of November, and I still haven't gotten the report for October up…whoops!
I've been fairly busy lately, working with Perrin on his niche site, introducing the world to Rank Hero, and managing other projects not related to Niche Pursuits. Hopefully you don't mind the report just a couple of weeks late…
I was very open in my last report about the fact that BestSurvivalKnifeGuide.com was hit by Penguin 2.1 on October 4th. In my last report, I had a record earning month of over $800; however, I knew going into October that it wouldn't be anywhere close to that, thanks to Penguin 2.1 and the Negative SEO performed on my site.
So, if you are curious to see what a Google penalty can do to the traffic and earnings of a site, you are in the right place! In addition to the standard income report, I will also share what some of my plans are going forward to beat the penalty and bring my niche site to its former glory of dominating the search engines.
October 2013 Earnings
During the month of October, BestSurvivalKnifeGuide.com earned $298.34 via Amazon Associates. In addition the site earned another $2.91 via Skimlinks! So, the total earnings of the site was $301.25.
Here's a screenshot from Skimlinks that pushed me over the $300 mark:
Obviously, this is a huge drop from September, I was expecting that. However, considering that the site ranks on the 2nd or 3rd page now for many of the terms it used to be on the first page for, its not the end of the world. At $300 a month, the site is still profitable. The only thing I have to pay for now is new content if I want it.
This is a nice little chart showing that at least the earnings is still growing overall since the inception of the site. In total, the site has earned $3,821.34 since it was created.
Earnings Since Inception
Here's a quick chart showing just the earnings from each month:
Yep, the earnings dropped in October!
During October, the website shipped a total of 144 items during the month of October, which is much less than half the amount shipped in September.
The silver lining is that my conversion rate stayed about the same! Of course, this is to be expected as I didn't make any significant changes to the layout or ad placement of my site.
When you take a look at the Google Analytics screenshot below, its quite obvious when Penguin 2.1 hit…ouch! However, you can still see that even after the penalty, the site is still getting a few hundred unique visitors a day, which is great! But its nowhere near the great traffic it was getting from Google before.
In addition, I wanted to share the NUMBER of long tail keywords that sent traffic to my site. Although its not a very relevant metric anymore since Google started its move toward 100% not provided.
Google just isn't providing nearly as much data on the keywords that are actually generating traffic anymore. You can also try using Google Webmaster Tools to get a better idea of where you traffic is coming from.
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If you prefer to just look at all the raw data, rather than the charts, this matrix will give you what you need!
Penguin 2.1 Recovery?
I would really like to get the site back above the $500 per month earnings range. In order to do that, I need to reverse the Penguin penalty!
As explained in my last report, I feel like a major contributing factor to the penalty was all the negative SEO that was performed on my site.
When it comes down to it, my recovery plan consists of just a couple of steps:
- Remove bad links
- Obtain more quality links
I was contacted by a reader after my last post asking if they could perform a full link analysis on my site. I agreed. So, I've really been waiting to get that full report before I take much action, because I want to have everything documented as much as possible.
So, I've been a bit slow about taking much action to remove the penalty because I've been waiting for that analysis and because I've been busy with everyday business.
I really do hope to have a chance to start sharing my process for contacting webmasters and using the disavow links tool to clean up the site. I think this will provide some valuable information once I have a chance to get started.
Overall and Your Thoughts
I don't have much else to share in regards to the project at this point. I really haven't done anything with the site at all in the past month, other than add a few articles. I will continue to work on this site and hopefully return it to its former glory!
I think this is an important report to have, as it shows the full details of what a site can do, even after getting hit with a Penguin penalty.
As always, I look forward to hearing your thoughts and joining in the discussion below!