At the time, he was making over $30k per month from his small niche sites. However, a lot has happened in the past 2 years and his strategy has changed dramatically.
Today I am publishing an interview I did just a few days ago with Hayden Miyamoto from NoHatSEO.com. If you want to catch up on the all the history that Hayden has here on NichePursuits.com, you can see the 3 previous podcasts and a webinar we have done together here:
- Podcast episode 9: $30k per month with niche sites (old strategies).
- Podcast episode 10: How to Find Valuable Expired Domains
- Podcast episode 21: How to Make Money with Your own Private Blog Network
- Webinar: Building Your Own PBN and Rank Hero Introduction
So, why did I bring Hayden back for a 4th time on the podcast? Well, not only have his episodes been the most popular, but a lot has changed over the past year or 2. Google and the niche site landscape are rapidly changing, and so the advice given a year or 2 ago are not as applicable anymore.
In fact, Hayden has changed up his strategies a bit and is focusing more now on building out larger sites. One of his sites is now doing over $10k per month! So, I wanted to bring him back on to discuss what has changed and what's still working for him.
In addition, Hayden is opening up another internship for those interested in learning from him.
Notes from the Podcast Interview
To get all the details, please listen to the entire interview below with Hayden, Perrin, and I. However, I also wanted to share the main points that we covered in the notes here.
So, what's new with Hayden's niche sites?
First, Hayden is making some smaller sites now only to test if he has a potential market that he can grow into something much larger. No longer is he building thousands of small sites.
- First, he checks to see if the site has a good RPM (Revenue Per 1,000 Impressions). He likes to see an RPM of $100+
- If so, he scales those sites with more content. Adds lots of articles with length of 500 words plus.
- He is seeing revenue of $12/month per new article added on some of his best sites
- Sliding scale of #Pageviews per content vs. RPM.
Why Larger Sites?
As Hayden says, “Micro Sites are dead” because of:
- Sandbox. It's simply taking up to 6 months for a niche site to truly rank well in Google; and this time lapse can tie up cashflow…making it more difficult to build dozens or hundreds of sites at once.
- The EMD update took away the weight of having an exact match domain.
However, overall Hayden is still using similar process for keyword research, he is just working on larger sites.
One of the benefits of building larger sites is that they can get higher multiples when selling, not just through Empire Flippers (where all sites are listed at 20 times monthly earnings; a very healthy multiple).
The Google sandbox seems to only exist for higher LMS keywords:
- Hits homepages more than inner pages
- Building on expired domains seems to bypass or at least reduce sandbox
Link Building and Google
Nothing has changed for off-page link building. The strategies of using expired domains and PBNs is still his strategy for getting links.
However, it does take more links. Previously a PA of 30 type term took 30 links; now its taking closer to 50 to rank.
Where is Google giving more weight to?
- On page optimization is huge as well as user intent. LMS keywords are very important to use on page.
- Don't do on-page like you did a few years ago; do not over-optimize. Anchor text breakdown; up to 30% for brand/url…however, Hayden never uses exact match anchor text.
- SEOLyze is a tool that analyzes content and shows top 20 terms used by top sites in Google. This can help you know what topics to write about.
- Just make sure you don't over use your keywords on-page. Maybe mention it 3 or 4 times.
Hayden's Recent Site Success
Hayden and his partners recently sold a site through EmpireFlippers.com for $16,000. The site was making around a $1,000/month at the time.
Now Hayden and a partner are building a larger site in the financial niche. He is planning to get the site in Google news.
For this financial site they are developing out about 15 silos per month; each silo is about 7,500 words. They are finding silos through keyword research. (Silos are just categories; you can use WordPress categories to create a new “silo”).
The total monthly revenue of the financial site is currently low 5 figures; over $10,000/month.
- Hayden recommends making sites more Magazine style for a higher multiple. Lower RPMs often sell better; because because buyers think they can increase the RPMs.
- Hayden is more comfortable flipping websites because they are larger sites; because these are more solid sites. However, he's also hesitant because the properties are so valuable.
- Link building is actually less for a larger site; its a long tail play. Hayden is only building 30 new links per month for this type of larger site.
How is Hayden able to create so many sites on his own? Well, he has lots of help through partners and interns. His average cost per article is only around 6 or $7 for a 500 word article.
We also discussed Hayden's internship that he has been running. What is the internship all about?
- Hayden has been doing the internships for over a year now.
- They are all different.
- Hayden is able to do lots of different SEO experiments, but then he is also able to meet new people and form partnerships.
- With the new internship, they are focusing on building out authority sites.
- Successful graduates are able to get access to a huge network of PBN links. And of course the training and the access to peers is a big benefit of the internships.
- The cost of entry in a way is writing content or perhaps finding expired domains.
- The internship acts as a way to motivate and connect people. Its 100% virtual.
- You are set in different groups with an accountability partner.
The next internship begins July 21st. To join, you need to send in a basic application and Hayden will get back to you. There is a refundable deposit, just to make sure they get serious people.
Hayden has created a special page just for NichePursuits readers! Go to this link, and you will land on this page:
Once you submit your name and email, the next page will give you a couple of options for internships and how to apply.
Hayden's Retreat in Mexico
Hayden also recently held an entrepreneurship retreat in Mexico (where he lives). This has got him excited to have more people come down and build a larger community of entrepreneurs. In fact, a few partners are moving down to Mexico to continue working together.
Through Hayden's partnership's he is working on larger business projects; many of which started at his retreat in Mexico.
My Thoughts on the Interview
Overall, I really enjoyed having Hayden back on the show. It was interesting to hear how he has changed his strategies a bit for building out sites; but that the core of keyword research and link building are still essentially the same.
In addition, hearing about his larger site making over $10,000 per month has Perrin and I thinking about sites that we can scale or other larger niches that we might be able to go into. The SEO landscape is constantly changing, so it was great to hear from Hayden what he and his team are doing.
In addition, I will just say that I know several people that have participated in Hayden's internships. They say its a lot of hard work, but you also learn a great deal. The constant accountability to Hayden and other interns is huge. However, perhaps the biggest benefit that I've heard from others is the network that you are able to build with like minded entrepreneurs.
In addition to having the chance to partner with Hayden and his team on future projects, you are also able to partner up with other interns that you meet.
So, if you are looking for a little guidance, or at least a chance to form some great business relationships, you can apply to Hayden's internship starting in July right here.
Listen to the Podcast Here
If you enjoy the podcast, please leave a rating on iTunes right here.