Christmas seems to be coming a little early for Perrin and his site, aPennyShaved.com! The site has aged a bit and Google is loving what it sees and rankings have picked up across many long tail keywords.
The past couple of weeks, Perrin and I have basically just stayed the course. We haven’t done anything different that what we’ve already covered in detail. And luckily the work Perrin has put in is starting to pay off.
Overall, I’m REALLY happy to see the results of this project!
Perrin has provided a great write-up of what has transpired over the past couple of weeks with this project, so I’ll let him take it from here…
Perrin’s Week 15 Write-Up
15 Weeks down! Long time, no see, everyone! It feels weird to only be updating you guys every other week, but it’ll definitely make the updates more exciting, since so much more happens in two weeks. And I think that’ll be especially true for last two weeks!
Let’s get started with a status update.
I actually haven’t reported on traffic yet – mostly because I didn’t think I was getting any. However, the site started to earn money (more on this below), and Amazon was showing plenty of clicks. Something was clearly awry. I still haven’t totally figured out why, but Google Analytics hasn’t been correctly reporting for me.
Even after uninstalling my plugins and installing Google Analytics manually, it still only shows me at 10-15 visits per day. Based on what I’m seeing everywhere else (mostly Amazon), I just know that’s not the case. We just made those changes 4-5 days ago, though, so I’ll give it another week or so before I make any changes.
So, for now, I’m kind of forced to use Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) to estimate my traffic. And GWT says I’m doing great!
According to GWT, for the last 30 days, my site’s gotten about 3,000 clicks from 27,000 impressions. One of the most encouraging aspects of this, though, is that an increasingly small portion of my traffic is coming from people searching for “A Penny Shaved” or some variation. In fact variations of “A Penny Shaved” only account for about 300 of those 3,000 clicks, whereas two months ago, it was basically 100% of my traffic. Now, almost all of my traffic is coming from shaving-related keywords.
The other cool thing here is that the number of queries has gone way up, even in the last 30 days. My site was only showing up for about 40 queries. Last month that number was around 300. Today, according to GWT, my site is showing up for 448 queries. That’s super good news to me. It’s a small indication that I’m bringing in good long-tail traffic, which has been my goal in this phase of the project.
Lastly, my primary keyword, “Best safety razor” represents about 1,000 of those 3,000 clicks. Pretty sweet!
My rankings have improved nicely since the last time we talked. In fact, I’m doing better than I’d hoped! Check out this screen shot from Long Tail Pro.
Last time we chatted, I was on the front page for (I think) three of my keywords, and most of my other keywords were on the bottom of the second page. I’m now on the front page for seven of my keywords. Seven!
Remember when I was little-kid-in-a-candy-store excited just to have one on the front page?
Almost all of my other keywords are on the second page now, which is super encouraging. Many of those words have jumped almost 10 spots in two weeks.
For my primary keyword, “Best safety razor,” I’m at #3. I’m almost certain I can beat the #2 spot, but that dang LifeHacker article is sitting at #1. We’ll see. At this point, since I’m finally starting to see some good long-tail traffic, I’m really not too worried about it.
You’ll also notice my homepage keyword on there: “Best electric shaver.” I honestly didn’t think I’d be ranking so well for that keyword at this point. Remember, it had a KC of 42 when I found it. And I’m now on the second page — #14 to be exact. If I happen to get on the first page, that could give me a nice little boost in traffic, I think, especially since it’s such a high-volume term. Think it’s worth another round of Rank Hero articles?
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Now the fun part 🙂
Last update, I told you I’d made $39.43 in November. Well, today, only two weeks into December, I’ve made… $138.45! Like… what? That’s just crazy to me!
It’s so funny to have treated this mostly as a hobby and then to suddenly be earning real money from it. And, it’s super, super encouraging. It’s much easier to put extra effort in when you know your process works.
So, right now, the site is making between $10 and $20 a day. Some days more, some days less. If it breaks $200 this month (and at this rate, it surely will), I’m going to really hit the gas and fill it out with content.
Lastly… what HAVE I been doing these past two weeks? More link bait + outsourcing.
Last week, I set up, researched and executed my second round of link bait. The process was the same as my first round of link bait, but my targets were a little different. In this round, I targeted semi-relevant sites (mostly about men’s fashion) with very high page authority. Most of my targets had a homepage PA of 50 or higher.
But I essentially did the same thing. I wrote a “Top Lifestyle Sites” resource page, wrote nice complimentary blurbs for each of my targets, and then reached out to the webmasters to tell them I’d given them a shout-out. Then, if any responded positively, I asked if they had a guest posting or blogroll system.
My results were mixed. About half of them said “Thanks!” and then never responded to anything else. Another said “Thanks!” and told me they do take guest posts but then stopped responding to emails.
However, one of the last ones gave me a blogroll link on his blog, which has a homepage PA of 61. So that was a pretty big score. A PA of 61 is huge, and this guy is pretty relevant; he sells his own shaving eBook right on his site.
Anyway, I learned a valuable lesson. If you want to get the most out of your link bait, don’t go too big. Most of the sites I was targeting probably employ people full-time to go through all their emails, and those people don’t have decision-making power.
The one link I did get was from a private blog owner. So, next time, I’ll go for big, but private, blogs.
And… lastly (I know, it’s a long one! But I just haven’t talked to you guys in a while!), I tried my hand at outsourcing content. And… it failed. Kind of.
I posted an article request on iWriter with very, very detailed instructions. It sat there for about 3 days before someone decided to take a whack at it. They wrote 1,200 words, and almost all of it was fluff. After reading it, I couldn’t remember a single detail about the products reviewed because most of the reviews said things like, “Everyone wants the best ingredients, and this product has the best ingredients.” In other words, nothing substantial.
So that was a bust. Instead of posting a couple of good articles, liked I’d hoped, I ended up just writing one myself. Next time (this week), I’m either going to try again with a premium writer, try TextBroker, or find someone on one of the freelance forums to write a batch for me. We’ll see! I haven’t put too much energy into this yet, so I’ll have more to report in a few weeks.
All in all, this has been a super exciting couple of weeks. I feel like my site is, like, doing stuff! On its own! Finally! And that, my friends, is an absolute blast. I’m really looking forward to giving you guys an end-of-the month report after Christmas.
Til next time!