Empire Update: August 2011

Posted September 7th, 2011. Filed under Passive Income

Empire Update: August 2011

August was a pretty boring month as far as my online business went.  It consisted of my longest writing streak, with a grand total of 183,000 words written.  Most of that went to backlinking articles for my original 8 websites.  The Keyword Academy underwent a drastic change in curriculum in August to what they are now calling TKA 2.0.  The new method now recommends making a single website which you are passionate about producing content for, as opposed to the old model of creating websites that are easier to rank.

The shift in mindset is necessary to ensure the my online business is sustainable for years to come, but I’m not quite ready to put all of my eggs into a single TKA 2.0 site.  Moving forward, I’m going to continue promoting my 8 “low hanging fruit” websites heavily, while experimenting with a much broader 2.0 style website around something I’m interested in.

However, I have decided to take my top two performing websites (of the eight) and turning them into authority sites in their niche.  As a first step I’ve already purchased a few products to make a video review and create some truly original content.  If all goes according to plan I will have 3 authority sites spread across completely different niches.  Two will have highly manufactured link profiles, one will have much more on-site content in an attempt to attract natural links.

August Earnings:

August continued the record breaking trend in earnings despite the fact that advertising dollars are known to dry up in the late summer months.  I’ve started tracking my traffic and earnings a little more closely and I definitely noticed my average eCPM to drop dramatically towards the end of the month.

For the first time in August I broke the 6.5% commission bracket in the Amazon Affiliate program selling a total of 54 items.  Overall, my income broke down like this:

Adsense:  $349.61
Amazon:  $44.62
Chitika:  $5.54

TOTAL:  $399.77

Just 0.33 cents shy of getting my $400 dollar badge, but I’ll take it.  (What sucks is the last day of August was one of my worst performing days since March.  Literally one extra click would have pushed me over the edge.)

In August, I had a total of 9,636 visitors across all of my properties, a 30% increase over last month.  I put together this chart to track my traffic and earnings each month.

April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011
Total Income$84.19$92.44$119.61$299.65$399.77
Visitors8662021382269149636

Personal Life:

During August I pushed hard to get ahead in my article writing because I had several freelance jobs scheduled at the end of the month as well as a trip to Florida for a couple weeks.  As I’m writing, I’m at the airport in Atlanta heading off to Kansas City for a job, then I’m off to Florida.

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Record Setting Word Count For Postrunner

Posted August 9th, 2011. Filed under Passive Income

Keyboard On FireYesterday I broke my record for number of articles written in one day.  I managed to bust out…..wait for it…..32 ARTICLES, for a total of 10,240 words.  It also just happened to bring me up to exactly 500 articles put into the Postrunner system since I joined The Keyword Academy.  Not too shabby considering 144 of those 500 articles were written in the past 7 days.

As for earnings, it was a good day with $12 dollars.  Not recording breaking, but I like the way this trend is going.

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I’m Still Here…

Posted August 6th, 2011. Filed under Passive Income

Empire Update

Wow. Has it really been three months since an update? Things have changed A LOT since April. No, I haven’t given up on making money online- far from it. In fact, I’ve neglected this site largely because I’ve been spending so much time on my other sites, producing A TON of content for them. Right now, I’m working on 8 websites spread across 8 entirely different niches. I am writing anywhere between 16 and 30 articles everyday for my websites, with the majority of those going to other peoples websites to create backlinks and build my authority.

Why My Plan Failed

I had a plan of giving Internet marketing all of my time for six months to see if I could create a full time income. I failed. When I started online, revenue sharing sites like Infobarrel, Hubpages, and Squidoo, gave newcomers a huge advantage by leveraging the site’s overall authority to rank articles in Google in weeks rather than months. One month and 24 days after I began working online, Google pulled the rug out on that loophole with the Panda algorithm update. Luckily I had just enough experience online to go out on my own, but not so much time invested that I wasted too much effort contributing to those types of sites.

March and April were somewhat of a loss. I kept writing online, but I also started doing a few production jobs here and there. Then I found The Keyword Academy (TKA). TKA has been a wealth of information and more importantly, they have all of the tools I need to succeed online. I already knew how to find low competition keywords, and I knew the key to ranking well in google was backlinks. TKA gives me access to hundreds of blogs to post articles to, as well as tools to organize all of link building campaigns.

The good news is that now all of my efforts are going 100% to my own properties. No revenue sharing, no policy changes, no rules. The bad news is it takes much longer to build your website’s trust with Google than if you contributed to a higher authority site. Realistically, it takes about a year to see any fruit from your labor. But, TKA has a forum full of people who are wildly successful (i.e. $5-20k earners per month verified earnings) who confirm that if you just write consistently, the money will eventually come.

So that’s the stage I’m at. I’m writing more than I ever thought possible, averaging around 6 thousand words per day. I’m already seeing some increases in my income, but I shouldn’t expect to see anything substantial until about the 9 month mark (January) and then things should pick up from there as I reach the 1 year mark.

For those interested, here is a breakdown:

JULY EARNINGS

Infobarrel: $53.44
Websites (No Longer Niche Sites**): $228.90
Amazon: $17.34

TOTAL: 299.68

Not too bad I don’t think. I must be doing OK, because the numbers keep rising each month.

**See my comment to Danielle below for my explanation of this.

Personal Life

Lauren and I are living in our studio apartment in Manhattan. Lauren was hired full time on the main floor of Tiffany’s on fifth avenue, about a 5 block walk away. I have been doing a little bit of touring this summer having gone to Long Beach, Chicago, Atlantic City, Washington DC, Seattle, and Atlanta. I head to Chicago again at the end of August which just about raps up my summer.

I also got my CDL Class A (semi truck) license last week. I’ve always wanted to get my CDL, but the schooling for it costs around 5 thousand dollars. I found a school that would give me two days in the truck for $755 dollars, so I studied myself, worked out my weaknesses and passed the test!

Keeping Up With The Blog

After writing all day long, I have a hard time sitting down to write a blog post. To change this, I think I’m going to make my posts much shorter and much more informal. Hopefully, this will make it easier to post more frequently.

You may notice a few quick changes I made around the blog. First, I updated my picture on the right hand side (thanks Julie) to a new shot I’ve been meaning to put up since March. Also, I’ve changed the free eBook from “The Future Of Internet Marketing” to “The LAST Craigslist Guide You’ll Ever Need.” I actually wrote the Craiglist guide all the way back in March with intentions of switching it out then, but just got too busy. Now it’s up, and I feel like it has a lot more to offer to subscribers than my last eBook.

That’s all for now. Hopefully I’ll start posting a lot more updates as I move along.

If you’d like to try out The Keyword Academy free for 30 days, would you mind using my affiliate link?

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My One Month Low Information Diet

Posted April 2nd, 2011. Filed under Productivity
MikeMoyerScalesNow that I finally have a month with no travel plans, I’ve decided to make the most of it by declaring a one month low information diet.  When I first started learning about making money online, there seemed to be an endless supply of knowledge I couldn’t absorb fast enough.  I remember creating my plan to rely on Infobarrel so heavily because the idea of ranking a website without the help of a higher authority platform seemed impossible.  I would take little nuggets of good information away from every blog post, forum thread, eBook, and eCourse I read. 

Now however, I’m beginning to notice patterns in each new eBook claiming a “secret” formula to ranking websites #1 on Google, creating well converting affiliate squeeze pages, and getting traffic to your blog.  The secret is almost always the same:

To rank a site #1

  • Optimize On-site by including your keywords in the URL, title, meta tags, first sentence, last sentence,  header tags, and image titles (and a few others).
  • Optimize Off-site by creating hundreds if not thousands of backlinks by setting up forum profiles, blog comments, article directories, and Web 2.0 properties. (The higher the PR the better)
  • Buy a few thousand links from a service for $20-50 dollars and see which ones stick.
  • Investigate your competitor’s backlinks and get as many as you can of theirs.

To create a well converting squeeze page

  • Keep the copy clean and simple
  • Include an email opt in with a free bonus, build a list
  • Include testimonials
  • Test and Tweak, repeat

To get traffic to your blog

  • Write consistently
  • Write quality content
  • Make thoughtful comments on other blogs
  • Write as many guest posts as possible
  • Build an email list from the start, provide fresh content in the newsletter
Sure everyone has a small twist on the procedure, but the foundation is still the same.  Right now, my performance online has been mediocre.  I have 4 websites ranking on the 2nd or 3rd page of Google, and my blog traffic has not grown substantially since my first month online.  The reason for this is twofold.  First, I am constantly reading “new” information which inspires me to start a new project, or a new angle on a project.  This is fine, but what I have finally realized is there are literally thousands of ways to make money online.  And everyone of them can be as lucrative as the next.  However, if I don’t completely follow through with each project, I won’t know which methods are working and which aren’t.  Secondly, I am wasting valuable time reading new methods online when I should be working on the old ones.  Up until this point that was fine because I truly was “researching” the best way to get results online.  Now I know the method, I just have to put it into practice.
To make sure I don’t waste anymore time surfing and reading, I am banning myself from all unnecessary information for the month of April.
I will focus my efforts 100% on furthering my online empire by creating content for backlinks, articles, and blog posts.  How this change will affect my day to day will be subtle.  I don’t have a problem procrastinating or being distracted during working day hours.  My problem is usually putting too much effort into starting new projects rather than putting in the work on the backend of my old projects (I say old, but they are mostly less than two months old). 

The more dramatic change will be working more at night rather than browsing my blogroll and forums.  To keep this change simple, I am going to implement a simple division of work tasks.  During the day, I will focus extensively on writing new articles and blog posts.  At night, rather than stay up until midnight reading forum threads, I will create backlinks to my work from previous days.  Simple as that.

Luckily for me, this change isn’t coming after months of procrastination or poor earnings.  I am very happy with the results I’ve had so far, and this “low information diet” is a precautionary step towards productivity to make sure I keep increasing those earnings month over month.

For anyone who would like to join me and make April your best month yet, leave a comment to pledge your decision.

 

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Empire Update: Month 3 – March 2011

Posted April 2nd, 2011. Filed under Passive Income
MikeMoyerVegasI not exactly very proud of my third month building my Internet Empire. The plan was to have 100 hours of driving time to Las Vegas having nothing better to do but write articles and build websites.  The reality was that the ride was so bumpy that I literally could not write (or read for that matter) a single word on my computer.  I got back from Vegas around the 10th and then went to Florida to visit family. 

Instead of spending my free time catching up, I opted to take the opportunity to study the material needed to pass the CDL (commercial drivers license) exam.  I’ve always wanted to get my CDL and for some reason driving cross-country inspired me to finally take the leap.  I passed all of the exams on my first try and I’m proud to say I have my permit.  (I’ll take my road test sometime in May).  I was back in New york sometime around the 22nd and still had nothing new to show for my empire.

Meanwhile, I had been planning to visit Detroit since the beginning of the month to look into investing in a business with a friend who lives there.  As it worked out, he was available on the 28th.  Which meant, I had 6 days to catch up on all of the household chores, pay bills, and do what I could to further my empire.  I decided that since I had already left my Infobarrel untouched for 3 weeks, I would let it finish out the month to see where my earnings were at with the new Google algorithm change.  I instead worked on my two niche sites I started in February, adding a few articles to each, creating custom headers and logos, and building a few backlinks.

My main project however was working on a new niche site to promote a Clickbank product according to the steps outlined by the SEORecipe over on the Warrior Forum.  I researched the products, purchased the domain, created the logo, advertisements, and wrote the articles according to the “recipe” word for word.  The author claims that the results should be apparent in 3-4 weeks, so I should have an update next month.

With the new niche site, I now have one site heavily promoting AdSense, one Amazon, one Clickbank, and one CJ/Linkshare.  And the good news is that the CJ/Linkshare site was my very first niche site is now officially out of the sandbox! It took almost exactly three months of not touching it at all to get out, but it is now primed and ready to be a #1 spot contender.  It was sandboxed after receiving only 8 backlinks, so hopefully now it can handle quite a few more (it will need a few hundred to rank).  Additionally, I think I will switch the advertisements over to AdSense as I think it will convert better for that site.  It’s been receiving about 100 uniques a month from being in the #1 spot of Bing and hasn’t made a single cent.

The good news is that April and May are looking pretty open to focus 90% of my time on my Internet empire.  The only obligation I have this month is a two week class on becoming a horse drawn cab driver in Central Park.  More on this later.

Now for the stats: 

Guest Posts:
No guest posts written.

Guest Post Goal: 1
Guest Posts Written: 0

Niche Sites:
I created my new Clickbank niche site, and updated my other sites which are now ranking on the 2nd and 3rd page of Google.  Lots of promoting these sites should bump me up to the 1st page this month or next.  Since the change in the Google algorithm, I have decided to put more emphasis on my niche sites over Infobarrel, although I have not given up writing articles.
Niche Sites Goal: 2
Niche Sites Created: 1

Mystery Product Research:
No progress.  A June launch is looking bleak.  I still want to pursue the idea, so I will keep you updated on my plan here.

Infobarrel Writing:
After realizing I wasn’t going to be able to contribute to IB much at all in March, I decided to use it as a little experiment to see how my earnings would bounce back after a drastic decrease at the beginning of the month.  I am happy to say my AdSense earnings increased over 60% despite all of the drama, and I will continue to write regularly, although not 3 articles a day.  I will start with 2 per day and focus more on my niche sites which seem to have more potential than any other platform.

Articles Goal: 90
Articles Written: 0
Total Articles: 162

Blog Posts:
I didn’t write a single blog post in March except for my update, and Infobarrel Rankings.  Epic fail.  This will change big time in April.  Plus I’m going to write a new eBook for my newsletter sign up since my old one is a little short.  I still managed to get 10 extra subscribers this month.

Blog Posts Goal: 8
Blog Posts Written: 0

Subscribers Goal: 100
Current Subscribers: 10
Total Subscribers: 34

Income Report: March 2011

I was still happy with my earnings this month despite my lack of attention.  Last month I made made 20 sales on Amazon with a conversion rate of 11%.  Oddly this month I had even more clicks than last month (288) but my conversion was pathetic at 1.39%.  I’m not sure what changed except that I’m not the Amazon genius I thought I was.   AdSense continued to rise in both views and clicks ending the month 60% over last.  92 clicks with a CTR of 3.09%. 

Infobarrel:
Adsense: $41.97
Chickita:  $3.82
Amazon:  $3.80
Affiliate Links: $0.00

Niche Sites:
Adsense:  $0.00
Affiliate Links: $0.00

Blog:
Affiliate Links:  $0.00

TOTAL: $49.59 (-14.01)

I am still very happy with these results.  The only thing I don’t understand is the drop in Amazon sales.  I get that I was lucky with a 11% conversion last month, but with an increase in clicks I hoped for at least a 3% conversion rate.  We’ll see how next month fares.  Additionally, I am really hoping my Clickbank niche site takes off this month.  I’ve followed the plan exactly for someone who claims it has worked on 57 other sites the same way.  If it works, I hope to see earnings over $100 next month.  Regardless I should qualify for my first AdSense check next month.

 

 

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