From 0 Visits to 100K per month... My Journey

plopza

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I decided to create this journey primarily to monitor my progress, but hopefully it can also serve as a motivation for some of you, and for my own accountability :).

It's a journey and a case study at a same time. Let's see where can take me/us.



I have been reading several journeys here on BHW for some time. What I found interesting was the focus from creating a journey, simply put, seems to help the poster accomplish their goals. So, I decided let’s start a journey that will help accomplish my goals and add some motivation to other readers like me that have a goal they need to achieve.

The Goal:

I have 2 websites. One is a utility on the internet (think image sharing, file conversion, calculators, etc.) and the other is a website for a service business I want to start in my local area. The deal is as follows: North star is to start a service business in my local area, offline. First, however, I must replace the income of my job so I can resign and still have an income until the local service business gets off the ground. The service business will generate leads that I sell until I can perform the service. At this time neither website is monetized or ranking for anything besides domain name.

The goal is for the utility website to get 100K views per month, add monetization, and build content on my service business site so that when the utility site gets monetized, I don’t have to start over on the service site.

Simply put goal: 100K views per month on utility site monetized with Ad Thrive, memberships and monetized links. Content ranking in top 10 for targeted keywords locally for my service business. 30K monthly visitors on local service business site.

Basic background & overview:

- The sites are brand new – utility site on a new domain, local service site is on an aged domain, but no content and ranking as of now. Will be interesting to see if aged domain hits sandbox like the new domain does.

- My feeling is focus solely on content and traffic and then worry about monetization when I have traffic to monetize. It doesn’t hurt to build up to 100K visitors per month with no monetization and then test and learn the best monetization strategy.

- Current stats – maybe get 1 visitor per day to utility site (usually 0).

- Absolutely no income yet, sites are not even monetized; will add later

- The niche for the utility site is competitive, but not so overly hard to rank for that it can’t be done. The service I want to offer is rather evergreen and once the site drives leads it’s a big ticket sale. Very easy to sell the leads to existing businesses until I can launch it.

- Goals: Add content to both sites. For the utility site grow to 100K per month. For the service site simply rank for local SEO and monetize the leads.

- No links will be built in the process. The utility site has 100 links I purchased on BHW from a PBN. For at least the next 8-10 months no more links will be purchased. We are simply going to rank content. That will be an interesting study. The idea is to generate 2 or more 1000-1500 word articles a day per site and rank organically without links.


A bit longer background & overview:

I have used a post by @Kikerinka as a model for my action plan. I used this journey as a blueprint to build a tactical plan to rank. You can read that journey as well. It gave daily detail on what was done and the site grew which I believe I can replicate.

Since the sites are new, I don’t expect much in terms of results for over 6 months. Building the links to the utility site appears to have resulted in a velocity penalty so trying to overcome that as well.

Why do I start this journey now?

Actually, my original plans for 2022 were completely different. I didn't plan to work on IM much.

Like I said earlier I followed several journey posts, and each seemed to accomplish their goals ahead of time. As I read through these, I was like maybe I should switch gears and create a travel blog, or a weight loss blog something that is easy to generate a lot of content. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks why not create content for my utility site and my service business I want to start? Start working towards being able to start the local service business without a worry of income because it has replaced. What a journey this would be if all comes to fruition. I can continue to update for years how my utility site and service business are ranking and performing.

Other things and methods of work:

- I will write 80% of new content myself. If I don’t write enough content per day then I will outsource the content writing. I don’t believe outsourced content will be at par with what I want on either site so I will try to do this VERY sparingly. That said, having something is better than no content so will outsource if I have to.

- I plan to produce the content for both sites myself. Both of the niches I am in are relatively hard to generate quality content, and most my competition doesn’t have content at all. It’s hard to write hundreds of articles about a utility site and my service business is tough to generate content on unless you are already in the business. That said plenty of articles exist on the service business and can be rewritten.

- The plan is to focus 80% of time on content writing for the rest of 2022 (20% on improving monetization and on page SEO). From January to April 2022, almost all focus will be on building content, It’s likely going to take until July for significant traffic to be reached because of how Google treats new content.

- The plan is to execute on my tactical content plan and basically leave everything else alone for now. The utility site is functional, but still needs a ton of development work and my local service site is just a domain with a homepage and lead capture on a Wordpress site. As I pointed out earlier, neither site is monetized in any way. In this journey you will get to see a lot of new. New rankings, new monetization, new development work, etc.

- The journey will be 18 months long here on BHW. Being that the utility site is functional I most likely won’t do much more dev work on it until this summer. The local service site will simply have content added to try to rank locally. If it does rank, I’ll have to figure out something to do with the leads. The local service business will need me full time dedicated to it, and it’s what I really want to do, but I must have a large amount of passive income before I can enter the business and close the leads on my own. Not too worried about that at this point, right now all my time needs to be on generating content and ranking, we will worry about what to do with the leads captured later.

- Will try to update this journey daily, to keep track of my progress. However, there are days, sometimes more in a row, when I am simply offline, not touching the sites at all. On those days I won't make any updates... I will make for it once back.

- The plan is to update you each business day with my journey. I will answer questions and post status daily to hold myself accountable and so you can see how my tactical plan is executed. On a monthly basis I will update stats such as traffic and eventually monetization.

- Please post any questions you have on this thread and I will do my best to answer each day.
 

plopza

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Today’s Update:

Utility Site:

Published 2 articles (1079 words and 1168 words)

Stats: Number of pages indexed: 2

Service Site:

Published 2 articles (1305 words and 1058)

Stats: Number of pages indexed: 1


How much you expect to earn from that traffic
What will be your SEO strategy
Good Luck

Looking at other journey's it appears $10 RPM is pretty attainable. To start I am hoping to get at least $100 per day. Ideally more like $300 per day would be desirable. For SEO just targeting keywords with content. No other SEO strategy at this time like building links, etc. Want to see how far content alone will take me.
 

blackbit78

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It seems that you are determined to reach the goal. I wish you good luck on your journey and hope that your passion and determination will take you far.
 

Kikerinka

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Hi mate, thanks for the mention :).

You have a solid plan, and do not be discouraged by the fact that you have a utility website.
Mark my words: content marketing is the way to go, for any website/service/utility online.

Just look at the most successful SaaS businesses such as Shopify for example. The core of their marketing strategy is content marketing. And this is true for 9 out of 10 such websites/services. As long as your content brings the right traffic to your website, that means people who are interested in the utility you offer, you're good to go.

Looking forward to your updates, and good luck!
 

plopza

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Would love to see your dream come true.
Following.
@GenesisOne - Thanks I'm still pushing out the updates :)

It seems that you are determined to reach the goal. I wish you good luck on your journey and hope that your passion and determination will take you far.
@blackbit78 - I am pretty determined and pretty motivated by some of the other journeys I have read here!

Hi mate, thanks for the mention :).

You have a solid plan, and do not be discouraged by the fact that you have a utility website.
Mark my words: content marketing is the way to go, for any website/service/utility online.

Just look at the most successful SaaS businesses such as Shopify for example. The core of their marketing strategy is content marketing. And this is true for 9 out of 10 such websites/services. As long as your content brings the right traffic to your website, that means people who are interested in the utility you offer, you're good to go.

Looking forward to your updates, and good luck!
@Kikerinka - thanks for posting your journey to get me started!

Today’s Update:

Got way behind today. My permalinks were not working on Wordpress giving a 404 error. Turns out in my config file for apache the AllowOverride setting was set to none instead of all which rendered the .htaccess file Wordpress uses for permalinks to be rendered useless. Had to pay a developer on Upwork to help me troubleshoot the issue. Both sites working as expected now.

Also had to do some work to both sites code to ensure that they were functioning correctly and linking to the blog articles. That all took much longer than I expected.

Utility Site:

Published 2 articles (1033 words and 1002 words)

Stats: Number of pages indexed: 2

Service Site:

Published 2 articles (1274 words and 1041)

Stats: Number of pages indexed: 1
 

plopza

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Updating a bit early today, going to do some writing this afternoon but not publishing anything else until tomorrow:

Today’s Update:

Decided today to set a milestone goal for this Journey. There is some rumbling that 30 articles the big G starts to look at a site as an authority (don't care if that is accurate or not). So our Milestone 1 is 30 articles per site. 3 weeks should get us to that. I’ll keep updating how many I have published until we reach it.

Still ticked off about yesterday! I wasted a ton of time just getting Wordpress to work which made me lose the pipeline of articles I had ready to publish so now I am working to get ahead again. I really try to only do the minimum viable product on the sites until I have real traffic and can test how features are used. Unfortunately, having the articles not throw a 404 error is a minimum requirement .

It’s hard knowing I likely will see minimal traffic until July, but today was rewarding to look at the sites and see the content starting to come together. Having big articles with tons of contextual links to other parts of the site (thanks to linkify text plugin) gives me a little satisfaction, not as much as a large number of visitors on analytics, but some at least.

Also on keywordtool.io I did some research today on my utility site for the keywords that have a minimum of 1000 searches a month the average CPC is about $10.00. That leads me to believe my income goals are realistic once I start ranking!

Utility Site:

Published 2 articles (1027 words and 1074 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 2

Number of articles on site: 6 (1/5 of the way to milestone 1)

Service Site:

Google finally updated after many many days to index this site for how I built it rather than the expired domain!

Published 2 articles (1063 words and 1247 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 1

Number of articles on site: 6 (1/5 of the way to milestone 1)

Good luck with your journey
Thanks for your well wishes!
 

plopza

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Today’s Update (Day 4):

I found a way to better write my articles. Before I was just putting headings and writing. Today I started expanding headings (H2 tags) with subheadings (h3) tags. I have read Google likes H3 tags a lot, and honestly, I was having a bit of trouble the last few days getting article length. This helped my articles and writing flow much better.

Honestly, this is probably the most disciplined I have stayed with a project already to date. Normally by now I’d be dissatisfied with results and start yet another website or business idea. It’s really dumb to keep switching “contexts” but I have done that a lot in the past. Seeing these sites coming together with content and knowing other people are doing good by sticking to content marketing I am staying plenty motivated for once. I will say, however, I can’t wait until July when these articles should be fully out of the sandbox to see what I have accomplished.

Utility Site:

Published 2 articles (1085 words and 1025 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 2

Number of articles on site: 8 (26.6% of the way to milestone 1)

Service Site:

Yesterday I posted that Google had updated to the content I published after buying the domain. Checking today it appears I am hitting a different box as it still has the old domain content.

Published 2 articles (1035 words and 1076 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 1

Number of articles on site: 8 (26.6% of the way to milestone 1)
 

Kikerinka

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Great to see that you stay consistent with this, including the updates. Maybe it is a journey like this you were missing in your plan in the past, always switching from one idea to another :).

I'll keep my eye on this and really hope you'll stay consistent like this for few months at least.
 

plopza

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Today’s Update (Day 5):

Last update until Monday US Time.

Today I found myself thinking about all the other sites I should start. I, of course, am thinking because when this starts to work I’ll be sad I didn’t have 4X the number of sites. The problem with this thought is if I was to start 2 more sites I’d burn out writing and updating that many sites so it would leave me 4 half baked sites. I keep reminding myself I want Ad Thrive and to get that I have to have one site at 100K visitors per month, that is the goal, 4 sites at 25K visitors per month nets me nothing!

Gaining on that first milestone to have 30 articles per site. 1/3 of the way there today. Rumblings are that 30 articles is when the big G starts thinking a site may be authority. Who knows if that’s true, but it’s a good short term milestone to have as a goal.

Utility Site:

Published X articles (1085 words and 1033 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 2

Number of articles on site: 10 (33% of the way to milestone 1)

Service Site:

Yesterday I posted that Google had updated to the content I published after buying the domain. Checking today it appears I am hitting a different box as it still has the old domain content.

Published 2 articles (1244 words and 1301 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 1

Number of articles on site: 10 (33% of the way to milestone 1)

Great to see that you stay consistent with this, including the updates. Maybe it is a journey like this you were missing in your plan in the past, always switching from one idea to another :).

I'll keep my eye on this and really hope you'll stay consistent like this for few months at least.
Yeah the number of views this thread has, and my constant reminder that I have to have content to rank and 100K visits per month to get the advertising monetization I want is motivating. Thanks for checking in!
 

AlbinKurti

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great journey and it seems you are gonna update us daily so following this
 

plopza

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great journey and it seems you are gonna update us daily so following this
Thanks! Yes daily updates except for weekends US time. Literally started from 0… two sites… two brandable domains… no exact match domains… service site was aged 9 yeardomain, but no backlink profile… other domain I registered basically forums a pronounceable brandable domain. Like a bone head newbie I bough 100 pbn links to that site. I am not buying anymore links… trying to rank only on internal seo and content for next 18 months. Keep in touch!
 

plopza

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Today’s Update (Day 8):

Welcome to Week 2

Changing colors so you can more easily follow what I post.

One Hour Indexer didn’t help, tried last night on one page, still not indexed.

I must increase content by about 2 articles a day per site in order to get to 100k visits per month in a reasonable time

It’s a good idea to put any new site ideas on hold until I can produce content at the rate of 4 per day per site

Took a break from posting today, though I still developed content. Will attempt to place about 8 per site tomorrow most of which is written.
 

plopza

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Today’s Update (Day 9):

No update again today. I haven't stopped writing, but have ran out of time to actually post to the sites. Will have a big update tomorrow.
 

Sollecs

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It seems that you are determined to reach the goal. I wish you good luck on your journey :)
 

plopza

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Today’s Update (Day 11):

Back at it today. Totally missed yesterday had stuff going on. I caught up on writing today and posted all my new content on the utility site.

Still have no new content besides the homepage indexed in Google. Looks like you just have to wait.

Utility Site:

Published 12 articles (1002 words, 1043 words, 1050 Words, 1078 words, 1024 words, 1033 words, 1132 words, 1042 words, 1090 words, 1055 words, 1021 words and 1096 words)

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 2

Number of articles on site: 22 (73% of the way to milestone 1)

Service Site:

Took a break from this site as the utility site has higher priority than service site. Will upload 12-14 articles to this site on Friday.

Stats:

Number of pages indexed: 1

Number of articles on site: 10 (33% of the way to milestone 1)



It seems that you are determined to reach the goal. I wish you good luck on your journey :)
Yes as long as I keep finding keywords to target with fresh content ideas! Thanks for the well wishes!
 

Kikerinka

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Be sure to manually submit those new articles for indexing in GSC. It will definitely help, at least at the beginning :).
 
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