Last blogpost about my purchase of two adsense websites was also relating to passion and the impact this (usually) has for websites. I realize that the website is called “niche websites” but every site starts out as a niche website and then grows into something more..
The term “niche” just focusses on a particular thing within a topic of your expertise or passion. If you write a lot (50/100 posts) then you can start to be seen as an AUTHORITY website.
I’ve build a few websites myself and only a few, in this case my running website, have been able to keep me interested and therefore I kept writing. This running site is my biggest website but also the one that doesn’t make any money (yet). Because running is a love / hate relationship I keep writing because I enjoy it, not because I have to. Which is a big difference.
Niche Website vs Authority Website
There are various Pro’s and Con’s to build a Niche Website and an Authority website, which I don’t really want to delve into here but I’ll sum up a few items that I think are key elements. There is a great (and long) discussion on Adsense Flippers where they discuss the Pro’s and Con’s with two guys who have their own speciality in each market.
Pro’s for Niche Website
- Quick to build and rank
- Small competition (usually)
- Unless market changes not a lot of maintenance.
Con’s for Niche Website
- Vulnerable for Google Updates
- Easy to competete with (typical market)
- Low Traffic (quick to top the maximum traffic)
Pro’s for Authority Site
- Strong SEO position
- High traffic potential
- Long and deep footprint online
Con’s for Authority Site
- Long time to build (higher cost)
- Lots of competition for many keywords
- Have to be passionate about it to keep writing (or outsource)
As you can see, each of the websites have pro’s and con’s which make the decision a very personal one. I have more niche websites than Authority sites because it was just easier to do. My running website (my largest) slowly grew from a niche website to a larger website. I’ll show you exactly what my larger (running) website is all about.
My “Authority” Website Examined
In the previous posts I spoke to Deborah who was asking a few questions about my running website. Since this is actually my biggest website where I write a lot of the content myself (some are guestposts) it is not yet an Authority website. My main topic is Running, and you can imagine this is a very broad topic which means it will need a lot more posts to become an Authority on running.
For instance I have yet to run a half marathon or more myself, which I think are the minimal requirements to call myself an authority.
However, I’ll share some stats on my running site so you sort of can expect or just to see behind the scenes of one of my biggest websites. Since this is also a website on monetization (which was also discussed in the comments in the previous post) I’ll got into some things that I want to experiment with for this particular website. And obviously I hope this can help your website or at least give you some ideas and help you on your way.
The MyRun.com.au website started on the 17th of February 2011. As you can see there have been massive spikes and drops over the past year and a half. In the beginning the majority were sporadic visitors but as time progressed you really see a continuous stream of visits.
The more you write the more keywords you will be ranking for, and the more keywords the more search results you will appear on. Hence the more traffic you can generate is often close related to how many posts you are able to write for your topic. As I said, Running is a very very broad topic and I am surely not the only one writing about it. The screenshot below shows the amount of keywords I am currently ranking for and the keywords that bring in the most traffic.
Over 34,960 keywords provide my website with traffic and this obviously doesn’t come with writing 15 posts, which you would normally do for a niche website.
I try to utilize a lot of various social media websites as you can see below. Out all of these 3 of these (Coolrunning.com.au, au.sports.yahoo.com and Viperchill aren’t social media websites) T.co is also a twitter variant. As you can see a lot of the Social Media websites have been very kind for my website, counting for the majority of my traffic (Google is #7) which is excellent.
Its great to see that I don’t rely on Google too much, as every update they put through puts my website at risk for being slapped in the rankings. This doesn’t mean that I do anything grey or black hat (bad things) but not every update is 100% accurate in punishing the right sites.
A very simple way to get your niche website from “Niche” to “Authority” status is to add more RELEVANT and QUALITY content. It is as simple and hard as that. Writing more will expose you to more people, more people will like your quality content and come back for more…It just takes a lot of time…
MyRun.com.au status quo
Below a screenshot of the current status quo (13th of August 2012) of the amount of articles that are on MyRun.com.au. I want to have at least 100 articles on this website in the next three months so I better need to write a few things to make that happen.
You can see from the above screenshot that I have 83 posts live and also use quite a bit of tags. I previously had over 40 categories but it became harder to put each article in each category so I cut them down quite a bit. As you see I use Thesis in combination with a Thesis Skin of Kolakube. To make my life a lot easier I also use ManageWP.com to keep my websites under one umbrella dashboard. I’ll write more on ManageWP.com in a different post.
Generating more quality content also interlinks with my strategy to make some money of the website. I have a few things in place that I want to get started for me to leverage more traffic and also to increase my newsletter subscribers.
As you can see, over the past 30 days I’ve seen a fair amount of traffic from various sources and this has been consistent for about 3 months now. The traffic is about 1500 – 2000 visits a month which is great. But obviously there are ways to increase this and this is why I have done the following.
My Strategy of Monetizing MyRun.com.au
There are a few key ingredients you need to be able to make money of any website.
- You need a website
- You need (relevant) traffic
- You need something to make money off or with.
Building a mailing list.
You may have heard this is super important, and it is, but it only works if you attract the right and interested audience to your website and you are able to win their trust. There are plenty of shady guys out there who make a ton of money.. but don’t be one of them. In the long run you will be a lot better if you try to be honest don’t scam people out of their hard earned cash.
I’ve got 3 elements (actually 4) that help me build my mailing list. Not that my current list of 33 is a lot but I haven’t done actively tried to get people to subscribe from the start. But hey, money doesn’t grow on trees so you can’t do it all from day 1.
Element 1: Email Program > Aweber
You may have heard about this from thousands of other bloggers that use Aweber but for me this has been such an easy ride. I’ve tried a different software once but this didn’t gave me the flexibility that Aweber offered. Also a lot of the WordPress plugins use Aweber as preferred mailclient.
Element 2: Capture Emails Plugin > OptinSkin and WelcomeSplash
I’ve used various plugins to create that niche little box at the end of every post but since I don’t know a lot about HTML and coding OptinSkin seemed like the perfect plugin… which it still is.
You get a few skins to get started and you can customize them in any color and text you want. And that is pretty much all I need them for > get noticed + show my message and have people subscribe to my email list.
This plugin basically loads a different page before you visit the site. This is a different approach then major pop-up plugins. As this is less intrusive and you also give the option to click away fairly easy. With pop-ups you are already on the site and reading the content that you want to read while you get interrupted with a pop-up.
I’ve tried various plugins and this was the easiest to use as it uses the basic WordPress editor like you are used to. And it is simply adding your content and picture and you are done. No HTML hassle to get your message shown.
This also leads me to the next element..
Element 3: Create a product people want to read > beginner running course
I did some research online and found a few products that helped me create the beginner running course. There are a lot of courses out there so a quick Google search can provide similar options but there is something different.
I’ve also added an email sequence which help people who signed up to stay motivated. There are about 18 emails which trigger every 4 days and help the participants to keep their head in the game. I also give them advice on nutrition, exercise routines and other tips to keep them going.
And I follow the same tips that I give, so I practice what I preach.
Element 4, which I sort of told before is to provide value. “Under promise and Over deliver” is a quote that is used in sales a lot to keep clients happy. The same goes for your visitors, you need to blow them away with kindness.
And yes, that will take a bit of time.
I haven’t started with generating additional traffic to my website and squeeze page (a page which shows the email optin) but I’ll start doing this shortly and will show you what I used and how the conversion was for these pages.
Review Other Products
There are plenty of running products out there, and some are good and some are bad. Since I want to keep improving my own running time I am going to review a few of these courses and see what works and what not. I will use MyRun.com.au as the platform to broadcast it on.
I’ve done a few reviews already (I rank quite well for “Garmin vs Polar”) and I will continue to review other items too. For instance I ran with a set of headphones the other day for a running race and they were useless. So I’ll review this on my site shortly.
Creating your own paid product
It is one to create a free product or be an affiliate of someone elses product, but it is a whole new ballgame when you have your own product. This will be something I will look into in a later stage as my website has grown to double the size and posts as it is now.
This will give me already written content to work with and I can determine what people like and don’t like. There are various ways to sell this (own mailing list, affiliates etc) but I’ll worry about this later on.
First things first, and build my own audience to a higher level. I hope this helps you find out what you can do with your own website and product. But this is the strategy that I want to follow to build MyRun.com.au to an even larger website.
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