This is the continuation of the first update of this aged domain niche site. In the first month after acquiring the site, the revenue clocked in at $780.
Since then, the site has consistently generated $1,300+ per month.
For the last 3-months from April to June 2022, a significant amount of content has been added to the site to finish up the topical map, and now the site is on auto-pilot mode.
In this case study, I will cover:
- Traffic and revenue stats
- Why Google is not generating traffic
- What improvements were made
- Future plans
Let’s get into it!
Table of Contents
Traffic and Revenue Stats
Here are the high-level stats related to the site:
- AHREFs DR 31
- Primary traffic from Bing (see below)
- $123 RPMs (see below)
- 125,000 words (+67,000 from Month 1)
- 78 articles (+48 articles from Month 1)
- Purchased from Odys marketplace for $4,000
Here is the monthly breakdown of traffic since launch:
The website has been on a slight downtrend but that’s primarily because of Google traffic decreasing month over month. Keep reading for the detailed breakdown of this problem.
Revenue & Cost Breakdown
The revenue was as follows:
- February: $180
- March: $780
- April: $1,320
- May: $1,320
- June: $1,350
The total revenue so far equates to $4,950.
The growth costs were as follows:
- February: $287
- March: $807
- April: $1,120
- May: $1,085
- June: $110
Total costs so far equate to $4,009, of which 95% is content. I paid a fixed $40/article. The acquisition cost of the domain was $4,000 from Odys.
Google Traffic is 6% of Traffic…
What’s most surprising about this website is that Google brought less than 6% of the total traffic last month.
The site gets 28% traffic from Bing, 12% from DuckDuckGo, and 11% from Yahoo. The second-tier search engines are generating revenue.
The chart below shows the organic traffic from Google since the creation of the site. The site got a boost from Google but then as time went on the traffic dropped.
Why is that? Most likely related to competition. The niche I am in is super competitive and there are some big players. Google first tested my content in February 2022 and over time realized there are better alternatives.
Did I optimize my articles for Bing? No, nothing special was done. I did the best practices for on-page SEO but nothing specific for Bing and secondary search engines.
Long-term, the goal is to pick up more search traffic from Google. I am hoping the improvements I’ve done to the content (see below) will help plus new backlinks.
Improvements Made Last 3 Months
1. Finished Topical Coverage With 48 Articles
Topical coverage is where you cover a specific topic in full. This is important these days in SEO and something I strive to achieve for all of my sites. Some websites need 50-100 articles to cover all topics, like this one, and others take 500+. It really depends.
How do you determine full coverage? It’s more an “art” than “science” because nobody can tell you exactly how many topics to cover.
Some quick tips:
- Build a list of keywords using Ahrefs that I know I should target. This includes info, review, buying guides, etc.
- Reverse engineering well-ranked competitors
By reverse-engineering my competitors, I can get a significant amount of ideas. I take their titles and reverse-engineering the keyword they are targeting. I then create outlines and get those articles written.
At this stage, I do not even care about search volume. Many topics do not get any search volume, but they need to be present on your website to ensure full topical coverage.
2. Earning at $123 RPMs
The effective RPMs I am getting are $123 from affiliate sales. The affiliate offer that I am promoting pays $60/sale.
The site currently gets around 7,000 pageviews. With display ads, in the best niche (e.g., Finance), I could expect $40 RPMs, and in a typical niche like home/kitchen, I could expect $15 RPMs on average. That’s the amazing thing about affiliate marketing; small traffic and lead to large revenues.
Long-term, the goal is to continue increasing this overall RPM by diversifying revenues.
3. Adding Backlinks Via Outreach
In June, I added one paid backlink through a contact that brought me an opportunity. The cost was $150 for a DR 60.
The benefit of aged domains is that they come (usually) with quality backlinks. This ensures you do not have to build backlinks from the get-go.
However, after a few months, it’s in your best interest to build a few high-quality links to keep the authority growing and continue building a moat.
The site is now on stand-by. During this time period, the following will take place:
- Add 1-2 articles per month to keep things fresh
- Add internal links strategically
- Try to diversify revenues
- Future proof the site with quality about page, social media profiles, etc.
The major risk with this site is the single revenue source. While I’ve worked with this brand since 2019, it is still risky if they cut commissions (which they did already at one point) or go out of business.
Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for future updates.