Niche Site Project 4 Monthly Report: September 2018!

By Spencer Haws |

Another month has zipped by, and it's time to report for September 2018.

If you want to catch up on everything going on with Niche Site Project 4, you can check it out here.  Overall, I've made a lot of progress on my new site and I'm excited to share with you the latest.

In addition, as I did last month in the August report, I've asked all the participants in the project to report their progress as well.  You will find that report below as well.

Traffic and Earnings

I wish I had some massive earnings to report, but alas, there are no earnings to report!  However, that's in line with what I expected.

In some ways, it feels like this project has been going on for quite a while now…but when I look at Google Analytics, the first visitor to my site came on Sept. 7th.  So, that's less than 1 month from today is all.

However, I am happy to report that the site is starting to receive some visitors besides myself and my writers!  Here's the Google Analytics screenshot:

As you can see, my site received 258 sessions for the month of September.  

I should point out that around Sept. 13th, I check the box in Google Analytics to no longer track bot traffic, so everything after that is “real” visitors.

Now, some of those sessions came from me and my writers (4 writers).  So, the Avg. session duration is affected by that obviously.

Here is a breakdown of the traffic source:

The organic traffic is the one I'll be looking to increase over the long term.  Right now, most of the organic traffic is coming from Bing, with a little bit coming from Google as well.  


Even though there was no earnings on the site last month, I did start to get a few Amazon clicks.  Here's the stats:

So, my Amazon affiliate links got 12 clicks total for the month, but no sales.  Again, this was expected.

How Long Will It Take For My Site to Make Money?

This is a good reality check for everyone involved in Niche Site Project 4.  My site got it's first visitor less than 30 days ago.  Am I freaking out because I haven't made any money yet?  Of course not!

Getting traffic and ranking in Google takes time.  At the initial start of the project, I projected that it would likely take 3 months or so before I see any real earnings.  After 6 months if my site is making $500/month that would be a good trajectory.

Remember, things start REALLY slow and feel like it's a snails pace.  This is all expected and part of the process.  Once I've put in the hard work for a few months, things will start to pay off.

Having said that, I'd like to at least make 1 or 2 sales in the month of October.  I think that's a good goal.  My site will be live for less than 2 months at the end of October, and I think a couple sales is totally doable.

What Was Accomplished in September?

Now that you've seen the traffic and “earnings” screenshot, I'd like to share briefly what I focused on for the month.

I now have 4 authors writing for the site and a total of 20 articles were published in September!  I found 2 of these authors on Upwork, and the other 2 I found through the Niche Pursuits FB group.

I'm paying approximately $15/hr for these authors, and for the most part they are doing a great job.  I've created a “buying guide” template that they follow and complete a checklist to make sure the article is published the way I like it.

In addition to the articles published, I did spend a lot of time getting the site to “look” just right.  Even though I found a theme that I liked on GeneratePress, I still found myself spending time tweaking things like the sidebar, header, and colors of things to make everything look good.

I also got a logo designed on Fiverr. It cost $12 in case anyone is wondering.

I'm generally happy with the way the site looks now, but I may do a few more things like increase font sizes and header sizes in the future.

Link Building

For some reason, many people think SEO = links.  I'm not one of those people.  However, I know this is top of mind for people, so I'll just mention what I've done here.

I left maybe 5 total blog comments on other sites.  They are all no-follow links, and I didn't really do it for the link “power”.  I'm just making myself known in the niche and may develop a more robust outreach plan to some of these bloggers in the future.

In addition, my site has gotten a few “trackbacks”.  This is just an automated link that some sites give when you mention their site in an article.

Finally, even though I don't see Pinterest as a link building strategy but a social sharing strategy, I did create a Pinterest account.   I have yet to create my first pin, but I'm getting closer!

I'm working with a Pinterest branding person to help me come up with the best look and feel for my pins and will have a “template” in place using Canva very soon.  Once that happens, I plan to start creating my own pins and getting the word up on Pinterest about my site.

I'd be surprised if I don't get more traffic from Pinterest in October than Google traffic.  But I'm hopeful that Google traffic will pick up shortly after that.

Overall, I'm happy with the progress and look forward to building something significant!

Monthly Report from Niche Site Project 4 Participants

Niche Site Project 4 is not just all about my own website.  One of the biggest reasons I do this project is to get others excited about the process and excited to build their own sites.

Several hundred people have decided to start niche sites because of this project.  Below you will find the brief reports and progress from everyone that wanted to report.  At total of 73 people reported.

As you can see below, a couple of people are definitely seeing some early success!  I'd like to point out 2 of those people.

The first is Jae Jun with an earnings of $889!  What?!   If you look at his report below, you can see that he provided a link to his website, so you can see it's not a traditional niche website. (I asked/allowed people to post a link to their niche sites or their blogs discussing their updates in more detail).

I reached out to Jae via email to get more details, and it's legit.  He's selling a Google Sheets Addon (which I didn't know was a thing).  He's focused on building an email list and selling through the Google store.  I've invited him to come on the podcast next week and discuss his progress and what's worked.  So, stay tuned!

Next is Ryan Faucher with $22.20 in earnings.  No, it's not a significant amount of earnings, but its' a great start!  In addition, he has a link to his full blog post that I recommend you check out.  

Overall, I love seeing the increase in traffic from people and hearing about the work they are putting in!

If you want to start a new niche site and start reporting…you can start now!  Be sure to join the email list, and I'll email you at the beginning of each month asking for your monthly report.

Join Niche Site Project 4 Here!

<td data-sheets-value=”{“1″:2,”2″:”domain name picked, theme installed, keyword research on 23 words so far, 4 posts published, 3 in draft”}”>

domain name picked, theme installed, keyword research on 23 words so far, 4 posts published, 3 in draft

<td data-sheets-value=”{“1″:2,”2”:”I decided to give up on my original niche site and selected a new one so it took me almost 4 weeks to have the new site up and running, do some keyword research and publish two articles. “}”>

I decided to give up on my original niche site and selected a new one so it took me almost 4 weeks to have the new site up and running, do some keyword research and publish two articles.

<td data-sheets-value=”{“1″:2,”2”:”I picked my niche. I have my domain bought. I have the theme chosen (I think) – will be bought when I am in funds later this week. I have the site struture mapped out. I am working on Keyword Research as well as mind mapping the content ideas for the cornerstone articles and supporting shorter articles – around 20 in total. Researched plugins – contemplated Squirrly but decided monthly fees too high. Will stick with my existing workflow. Foundations are in the ground and brickwork should be up to damp course level by mid month. “}”>

I picked my niche. I have my domain bought. I have the theme chosen (I think) – will be bought when I am in funds later this week. I have the site struture mapped out. I am working on Keyword Research as well as mind mapping the content ideas for the cornerstone articles and supporting shorter articles – around 20 in total. Researched plugins – contemplated Squirrly but decided monthly fees too high. Will stick with my existing workflow. Foundations are in the ground and brickwork should be up to damp course level by mid month.
Name or Nickname Number of articles total published on your site? Number of Total “Sessions” your site received in September 2018? Earnings for September 2018?
What was accomplished in September 2018 for your site? 
Jesse 21 306 0
Got a good 12-15 articles published, got Adsense running, now have a few writers I can outsource to.
Kevin 16 120 0
Social media profiles – done
Submitted to web directories – done
Build at least 5 dofollow baclinks through guest posts – done
Hire one more writer – done
Mouad lekdech 9 26 0
i post 9 post , all of theim are like best ….
Alwayne 17 265 0
I accomplished writing 10 more articles because i write all articles myself, and i also reviewed 10 high quality links, my goal is 100 post in the next few months.
Chris H 0 0 0
Nothing in September but I am in the process of hiring my first writer.
Jamal 15 250 $0
Added another 10 articles to my existing 5. I'm concentrating more on writing quality posts.
Halum 4 75 $2.41
Literally nothing. I am ashamed that I didn't do anything last month for the site. I think I will publish about 20-30k words for the site in October.
Christina 4 25 0
Ryan 1 13 0
Not much. Hired a VA to write another article (she wrote the first one) and she ghosted.
MB 1 0 0
Published one new article. Redesigned site
NicheXtreme 0 0 0
did research, bought domain, issues with hosting, got new hosting, signed to affiliate networks, approved, building site now.
Chadwick 6 211 0
I published 4 articles 2,000 to 4,000 words and worked to improve my writing style.
Md Billal Hossain Sarker 3 20 0
Nothing serious actually. My writer was sick, that's the reason she was unable to provide all articles I ordered. Hope this month (October 2018) will be the big point for me to turn into positive of the site. I am thinking to write a case study on my personal blog:
Simon 8 1266 $5
Pinterest profile is on point. Site comparison page templates have really come together. Instagram following 390. Contracted 2 really qualified writer.
Andrew Courtney 33 236 0
Most of my time was spent writing blog articles. 2000-3000 words per post. Started Pinterest account and growing this account, but minimal traction yet. Concentrating on building out content and building Google search and Pinterest traffic. Will not try to monitize site until traffic up to reasonable level.
Jae Jun 0 169 889 Google Sheets Addon was successfully launched. Marketing images and content for the Google store were uploaded with content marketing emails sent out.
Justin 0 0 0
Registered my domain and hosting
Chelle 9 72 0
Published 2 new posts, Created Freebie, 30 minutes to schedule/update Facebook/Pinterest/Twitter accounts.
Monty 0 0 0
Analysis Paralysis trying to commit to a niche.
HB 0 0 0
Changed domains, changed webhosts, then was hit directly by Hurricane Florence (evacuation, clean up, & 4 weeks of kids out of school so far had an effect…) Bought Thrive themes subscription, now designing new site & using KW scoring spreadsheet. Played w/ AhRefs, but like SEMRush better. Planning to begin hiring writers this or next week.
David 0 0 0
I signed up mid September so I'm late to the party. So far, I've researched the niche and came up with a dozen articles which still need to be written. I'm building a small software service on to my niche which is close to completion. The software is a wizard that generates a card for an event. Once the card is complete, the user is presented with affiliate merchandise for that event. I'm aiming to have both content on the blog and the software service up and running by the end of this month.
Roman 2 0 0
Done perfect technical SEO, created logo, installed and optimised GeneralPress theme, found writers ready to write for $10 per 2500-word article.
Sergio Almeida 9 71 0
Made 4 buying guides, 2 how to articles and 3 product reviews, fixed a problem with SSL, forced https version and added a plugin to put a table of contents on long articles and another to pros and cons review style
Bob R. 1 0 0
Registered my domain, setup wordpress, added my about page and found a dozen keywords. October is my month to blast about 10 or more articles. I'm a little behind but I feel im heading in the right direction.
Rachel 9 197 3.00 (ads)
Assisting with running a large school event and school break with kids at home for 2 of the 4 weeks has meant little progress in September. Wrote 3 articles. Created 18 new boards in pinterest, requested entry to 6 group boards, set up Buffer for twitter scheduling. No affiliate sales yet.
Ben Doyle 27 62 0
Suffered a shoulder injury so I haven't worked on the site as much I wanted but I;
– wrote 4 informational articles
– wrote a review of a company, let them know and now they're using it their marketing materials.
– Promoted 3 articles on social media for a total or around 800 shares
Jonathan A 9 244 £0.26
Writer in place to help move content along. Added email capture. Finalised design and page layout. Continued to stay active with social media aspect of site.
Andreas 18 638 0
Finished writing all articles I could think of for my first seed key word
Philipp 0 0 0
After a bad start in August, I can now say, I'm on track! I found my niche, I purchased a Domain, Installed and configured WordPress and I'm writing the first Articles right now.
Also I started an Instagram Account on 28.09.2018 and allready got about 80 Followers in my Niche. On to a good Start in October!
Simon Rohde Nielsen 8 24 +
Planned out the content strategy. Added some content to the most vital pages and 2 blog posts. October is going to kickass!
Violeta 0 0 0
Logo and final layout done, social media accounts set up.
Alex J 0 0 0
Started in late September, so only decided on the niche, bought the domain and started setting up the blog/website.
David 2 24 0
Lots of design work. 2 articles written by me from products we purchased just to review including YouTube Videos.
Nathan Lau 9 2 0
Created 7 articles
Jobe 2 0 0
Rohan Bhardwaj 23 31 0
Published initial batch of articles.
Jean Maurice 42 125 0
I created a couple of backlinks and managed to rannk top 10 in Google for 2 of my longtail keywords
MichaelB 0 0 0
Hadn't written any articles yet
JAC 0 529 2.52
Grow Social media followers. Post Link products on social media.
Mike Levitsky 4 236 $0.47
Published 4 articles, Worked on site design, Learned a lot about wordpress, Keyword research
Lucio 0 0 0 Niche reseach.
Ryan Faucher 60 636 $22.20
Created a Pinterest account. Posted in Disqus channel. Optimized Google Analytics event tracking. Full Details:
slipperx 0 0 0
Kajetan Duszynski 1 13 0
Unfortunately I had to focus on another topics so there was no progress in September, but this month there will be much more happening I hope.
DaveClifton 10 60 0
Not a great month. Only published 3 articles due to a busy month at work. Hopefully next month will be better!
lawlow 0 0 0
I cant believe one month has passed already! I have hardly done anything haha!
So far just got wordpress set up, theme chosen, logo created.
Quinn 28 523 0
please delete my report – not understanding the “sessions” (impressions?) on google analytics
RichP 0 0 0 Logo designed, first article written and the next 12 have been commissioned :)"}”>

Logo designed, first article written and the next 12 have been commissioned 🙂
Greg 0 0 $0
I started a blog – but it isn't a niche site – so unfortunately I'm withdrawing from Niche Site Project 4.0
Bob 0 0 0
I am still actively studying NSP 3 and following along with NSP 4. I expect to register a domain name and obtain hosting within one month.
Ty 6 5 0
Writing more articles and keyword research.
Chris 0 0 0
Turn of events created an opportunity for an older site which I had to pursue. Thus this project has been placed on hold
Shaish 6 0 0
Posted 2 more articles. Reached out to some more authors.
Arun 38 280 8$ is our website. There are lot of improvements to be made. Need to improve on the quality on the website articles. Going forward, we plan to cite from reliable medical resources.
Ally G. 2 2 0
Since I'm writing all content myself, it is slow going. I found 20 low-comp keywords and started writing the 3rd article (3,000+ words, should be published today). I also added a new theme to the site and installed/setup Yoast SEO plugin.
Bizhan 0 0 0
Very thorough Keyword Research, Researching the Niche further and writing the first Content Briefs
Endre 0 0 0
Nothing. still researching or not Even that
Tommy 0 0 0
To be honest i don’t have much to report, im still stuck at niche selection i struggle to do the work that is needed and ending up playing a game or somthing like that.
Bit what i have done now it to buy and install Cold Turkey so i hope to manage rigth from now on.
I hope for a better report next time.
hanman 1 0 0
I have outsourced article writing and will publish 10 articles in October.
Katha 26 223 0$
I really only started working on the site this month, so not as much progress as I would have liked yet. I started to get more efficient producing content though, set up social media channels and started learning more about Pinterest. I also started networking in my niche and building relationships with some stakeholders. I think those will be of value once I start link-building.
Lisa Pfeffer 0 0 0
Not much accomplished in September, but I wasn't planning on working much until October.
MichaelB 0 0 0
Life got in the way. October should be a better month.
Mason-jar 0 0 0
Got domain and the WordPress hosting. Also I'm researching my first 5 articles.
Shane 5 165 0
Set up the first proper blog posts. Optimised the site for seo.
Mike Ryan 10 106 0 GDPR Compliance, Amazon Affiliate Compliance, Yoast SEO Optimizations"}”>

Drafted An Additional 9 Posts, More Keyword Research, Added A Few Premium Plugins, Page Speed Optimizations, XML Sitemap, GDPR Compliance, Amazon Affiliate Compliance, Yoast SEO Optimizations
Robin 0 0 0
I'm still dealing with some unexpected circumstances that have prevented me from spending time on the site. I may need to withdraw from the project at this time.
Angela Lewis 5 11 0
I published a video on my YouTube channel, published three articles, created a menu, logo and made the site more navigational using the Divi theme. I'm creating an ethical bribe for my opt-in and looking into traffic sources. I added products from Amazon affiliates and will incorporate the links into future posts and on Pinterest. Going to push myself to do more content creation.
Christine and Rob 0 0 0
To be honest this took a back seat as we got back into the swing of the school year. Looking forward to getting back to it soon.
Len 0 0 0
no actions taken on site in September
Shar 1 0 0
It’s slow going for me so far, but, like Spencer, after extensive research for my niche I decided to go a different route. I have my WordPress website set up, created a logo and placed my first “about me” page article. I have been building a large base of keywords to work from. I will have 10 articles ready to be sent out for outsourcing and published by next week. Afterwhich I will be posting 2 – 3 articles per week.
Ben 0 0 0 Nothing yet
Hassane 1 0 0
Bought domain name, hosting, and published my first article

Success Stories | 31 comments

By Spencer Haws

Spencer Haws is the founder of After getting a degree in Business Finance from BYU (2002) and an MBA from ASU (2007) he worked for 8 years in Business Banking and Finance at both Merril Lynch and Wells Fargo Bank.

While consulting with other small business owners as a business banker, Spencer finally had the desire to start his own business. He successfully built a portfolio of niche sites using SEO and online marketing that allowed him to quit his job in 2011. Since then he's been involved in dozens of online business ventures including: creating and exiting Long Tail Pro, running an Amazon FBA business for over 3 years and selling that business, founding, and co-founding You can learn more about Spencer here.

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

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Hey Spencer, great post!

Only thing I’d like to find out more about is the cost of articles. You say $!5/hr, but how long are authors spending on one article?

I have a goal to write 100 more articles for my blog myself, but I estimate that will take me 2 years, so I’m strategizing on how to get some writers to help me move that along faster.

Cheers from a long time follower,

Spencer Haws

I’m paying $15/hour and it takes roughly 4 hours to do a 2000 word article. Most of my articles are 3,000 words plus, but that gives you a general hour of the time it takes.




Can you have your writers do a podcast on how they are writing solid 2000 word articles in 4 hours lol. It takes me hours just to research a topic. Let alone write about it. My God!


If you’re not familiar with a topic, it will definitely take longer. I’m sure Spencer used writers who have professional backgrounds that are somewhat relevant to the niche of the site.


Hey, Spencer can you share the “buying guide template ” via google doc? Or a link to download it. It would help a lot…

Spencer Haws

I’ve shared this in Organic Traffic Formula and Niche Pursuits Insider only.


Hi Spencer,

Very encouraging article, thanks for reminding me how long it takes to get traction and sales! Question: when you have someone design a logo for you, do they do any trademark checks to make sure their (your) design doesn’t infringe on a trademark?



Where do you find the box in GA to block bots? I didn’t know you could do that.


Great update Spencer. Glad to see you already gained some traffic and clicks. Good job Jae Jun, can’t wait to hear you on a podcast.

Spencer Haws


Jae Jun

Thanks Roman. Hopefully you’ll get value out of the conversation I have with Spencer.

Ryan Faucher

I appreciate the shout out and kind words Spencer! Niche Site Project 4 has been highly motivational. I’m happy to see many people returning to fill out their reports. It’s going to take a lot of patience, but I think once people get out of the sandbox, they’ll start to see their hard work pay off.

Spencer Haws

Absolutely! I think you are making great progress, Ryan. Making more money than me already :).

Simon Rohde Nielsen

Awesome to see how people progress!

Jae Jun

Thanks for the update and inclusion Spencer.
Looking forward to sharing the details of what’s gone on so far.

One thing I will preface with is that, I’ve run websites before and tried a lot this and that.
Also had an site killed during the google panda update a 4 years back. Was an amazon aff site for natural shampoo.

So we’ll have to see how this new style goes and whether I can get more traction out of it.


What did you do in marketing to make that amount so early?!! That is really inspiring.

Jae Jun

Hi Sakin,

What I did was launch a google sheets addon for Amazon sellers.
The revenue was from subscriptions.

What I’m doing in this challenge is creating a niche site and niche services based on demand of products or services that people are looking for as opposed to doing an affiliate site.


I am little confused about what Jae Jun did, which resulted $880 in this short time. And the marketing was done as mentioned, i did not get it too. Someone also said a social share with 800 share. How?

Spencer Haws

I’ll ask him on the podcast

Faheem Raza

I’m a bit lucky in this matter as i have made little bit money in this month i mean in September 2018. Almost $30+


Thanks for sharing a good blog.
I have also made a new blog and i will gonna try all this trick to earn some money

Matthias Haltenhof

Thanks for the update, I’m following along! And very goid idea to invite Jae Jun to the podcast, looking forward for that episode!

Jasa Print Kain


Great post, but how Jae Jun get 800+ monthly, do have any tricks or idea?
I can’t rely on adsense because there are still few visitors.


I’m bummed I didn’t get my report in on time (I was out of town when you sent out the email.) Not a ton to report, but I’m getting some visits (just over 100 sessions), 3 strangers signed up for my email newsletter, and some clicks (a couple of clicks to Amazon, though no sales yet.) Regardless, I’m super excited and enthusiastic about this project!

Hopefully I’ll have even more good news next month!

With gratitude,

Spencer Haws

Sounds great!

Mac | Personal Finance Blog

Thanks for the update. It was informative and helpful. Good to see that you earning the traffic and progressing. It is tough to get the kind of results you want to see and you have o put all your efforts, but eventually you will see the results you want. Keep working on it and good luck with it.


Thanks for the update, I’m following along! And very goid idea i apply this techniques in my blog site thanks once again

Tarun Bisht

Thanks for update

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