[JOURNEY] Starting a Local Rank & Rent Business

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BlueCatServices

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Little Background
I'm pretty tired of the freelancer rat race and looking for a way to scale things up once and for all.
In the past month my main idea was to transition from freelancer to start my own web design studio.
I keep procrastinating the creation of the latter and eventually realized that beyond my putting it off laid some truth: I didn't really want to do it.
I don't want to find myself dealing too much with other people, making calls after calls, managing revisions and so on...

Last week I ended up finding (again, met this business model already in the past) the rank & rent business model.
I actually find tons of those websites having the top positions for local businesses in my country, which makes me think it actually works.

This rank & rent thing just sound perfect for me.
I like waking up, open analytics and check the data.
I like doing keyword research, come up with content plan and strategic decisions to improve my sites.
I love the idea of owning the digital asset and grow it being the only person with voice on it.
And i freaking love MRR as a goal (monthly recurring revenue) which this model might bring.

This said, I'll try to give it a go and see how if it works.
This journey doesn't have a goal yet, it's an experiment.


The Plan

Will start with 1 to 5 websites in different niches. I believe this might bring useful data and insights.

Target location will be my home country (not english speaking).
The city I picked is the second largest (almost 2 million people). Yeah, I know, mid-size cities are recommended, but I want to try on the big league first.

I'll go specific high ticket services rather than the profession itself.
What I mean by that is I'd rather look for "rhinoplasty surger City" than "plastic surgeon city".
Targeting a specific service allows to create more target copy as well as rank much easier.


Startup costs:
  • domain: less than $10/year for each domain
  • hosting: will go with the reseller plan on Siteground, with less than $10/mth I can have all my sites hosted
  • seo tool: i use seranking which is $40/mth
  • jarvis.ai: will use jarvis.ai to help generate the content very quickly ($30/mth)

Spent a hour doing some keyword research and validation, ended up with 35 local keywords to target, all super low competition, more than 500 search/mth and mostly high ticket. Also, exact match domain (EMD) is available.

Will share below the strategy I used to generate such valuable list of keywords in 1 hour.

Shortlisted the 5 most interesting and will start with those.

So, here's what i'm going to do.
PickED 1 of the keywords/niche: it's a very specific treatment in the medical field (which i never heard about before my research)

"Keyword+City" in this case has 600 search/month.
According to SERanking difficulty score is 2/100.
According to SEMRush is 11/100.


  1. Deeper keyword research and come up with a little content plan, targeting every relevant query I found (questions above all)
  2. Create a list of businesses to rent the website to (good to have an idea of the prospects upfront)
  3. Domain + hosting setup
  4. Refresh my knowledge on CRO (conversion rate optimization) and lay out a bullet list of must do on my page
  5. Go on site like themeforest and similar, grab some good landing pages and copy them on Figma
  6. Sketch out the site (this will come useful also if i'd want to do a/b testing in future)
  7. Head in Webflow and build the site
  8. Use Jarvis to quickly get the content ready.
  9. Export the site from Webflow and upload the code in the hosting, connect the domain and the site is live!
All of this should take less than 10 hours.

After one site is ready, it'll just be a matter of patient and building more sites to test.

NOTES
I'm not going to worry about GMB at first.
I know it's one of the main issue in this model.
I'll try to rank organically without it and see how it goes.
 
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BlueCatServices

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KEYWORD RESEARCH STRATEGY
This simple strategy helped me generate a list of 35 valuable keywords/niches within a hour.
All of them are very low competition and EMD is available (exact match domain).

The tool I use is SERanking, but you can use whatever you want.


  1. Go on your keyword research tool and write just your city name. Easy.
  2. Use the filters: set the competition score max to a low value (in my case i set max 10 out of 100); I can also filter the search volume and excluded too big of queries, like the ones above 10k or 5k (which very likely are not going to be business related)
  3. Also, you might find an option in the filter called "Include", be sure to write your city name there, so you'll filter out all the results that do not include your city name directly
  4. You'll now have a huge list. That's fine. Grab a cup of coffee and start going through it.
  5. Most of those queries won't be relevant. But amongst them you'll start to find to gold mines. Note down any "niche/service+city" result you find.
  6. Make a research on the specific keyword found and from here you can start validate checking competitors.
  7. Look up the exact match domain; even if you don't find the exact one it's very easy to find something 95% similar.
    Example: "rhynoplastyFalconia.com" is taken? Try "rhynoplastyinfalconia.com" or something like that
  8. Keep going till you got a good amount of opportunities

In a hour I found valuable keywords, many of them I'd never thought about.
Actually, some of those niche/service I didn't even know they existed.
 

BlueCatServices

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Do you use a cms for your site or do you export the static webflow site and host it elsewhere?
For this journey I'll export the static Webflow and host it on Siteground.
No CMS (it's no supported if you export from Webflow).

Webflow hosting plan is too expensive and considering I'm planning to create many sites it would be a problem.
Also, static website are easier to optimized and can rank way faster, which is super important to get on top.

Webflow works for me because that's my main specialty as freelancer, I can crank out whatever I want with it quickly and it's going to make the development of those sites a sweet process lasting only a couple of hours.

In case I'd have to update the content, I'll simply do it on Webflow, re-export and update the files.
It's not something that will happen on a daily basis so it's doable.
 

Fussballgott

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For this journey I'll export the static Webflow and host it on Siteground.
No CMS (it's no supported if you export from Webflow).

Webflow hosting plan is too expensive and considering I'm planning to create many sites it would be a problem.
Also, static website are easier to optimized and can rank way faster, which is super important to get on top.

Webflow works for me because that's my main specialty as freelancer, I can crank out whatever I want with it quickly and it's going to make the development of those sites a sweet process lasting only a couple of hours.

In case I'd have to update the content, I'll simply do it on Webflow, re-export and update the files.
It's not something that will happen on a daily basis so it's doable.
I’m also exporting my sites from webflow and then use udesly to convert it to a WordPress site but that’s definitely not scalable as I run into many small issues over time.

How easy is it to import the code from webflow to siteground is it just copy paste or do you have to adjust and edit a few things?
 

N3WY0RK

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Would like to hear more about your plan to sell the leads. Are you just going to do a flat charge per call or lead? Are you just going to forward the phone number to the renter? What are you thinking of charging per call? Do you think you’ll struggle trying to sign up clients?

These are important questions to think about and test before putting too much time in to ranking a site. I would contact local companies ahead of time to first see if there’s any interest for your leads.
Just my two cents! Good luck and thanks for sharing!
 

BlueCatServices

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I’m also exporting my sites from webflow and then use udesly to convert it to a WordPress site but that’s definitely not scalable as I run into many small issues over time.

How easy is it to import the code from webflow to siteground is it just copy paste or do you have to adjust and edit a few things?
just upload the folder through FTP
stuff like form won't work natively, you need a third party for that
it's doable only for simple static websites

but if you want a blog, then better stick within webflow
 

BlueCatServices

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Would like to hear more about your plan to sell the leads. Are you just going to do a flat charge per call or lead? Are you just going to forward the phone number to the renter? What are you thinking of charging per call? Do you think you’ll struggle trying to sign up clients?

These are important questions to think about and test before putting too much time in to ranking a site. I would contact local companies ahead of time to first see if there’s any interest for your leads.
Just my two cents! Good luck and thanks for sharing!
Flat rent fee.
I don't care about "leaving money on the table".

Renting is the easier method, no need to waste resources on tracking and checking leads etc...

Approaching biz without results is not gonna bring me anywhere imho
I'd rather get the results first and make a no brainer.

As i mentioned in the first post, it's an experiment, so I don't mind invest some time playing with this.

We can't really know if something's gonna work without trying
 

N3WY0RK

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Flat rent fee.
I don't care about "leaving money on the table".

Renting is the easier method, no need to waste resources on tracking and checking leads etc...

Approaching biz without results is not gonna bring me anywhere imho
I'd rather get the results first and make a no brainer.

As i mentioned in the first post, it's an experiment, so I don't mind invest some time playing with this.

We can't really know if something's gonna work without trying

Awesome, curious why you're ignoring GMB? As you know that's a massive amount of local keyword traffic / calls.
Setting up a VOIP on the GMB listing can increase the number of leads tremendously.
 

theeyeinside

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Selling leads is difficult.

Renting sites to restaurants is easier

A new account at Epik.com domain hosting is $7.95 each. Additional orders after the first order are $8.95 each

Your reseller hosting plan WILL NOT allow unlimited domains and is slow. You might try a VPS with CPanel

Jarvis.AI is not the best AI writer. Try one of the lifetime plans at Appsumo.com

Supposedly the best all around AI writer (according to that BHW journey) is Closers Copy

The lifetime deal is at https://www.closerscopy.com/lifetime
The additional 15% discount code LIFETIME15
A 20% off code was BLACKBIRD but I do not know if it is still active

Get your wordpress themes from GPLDL.com. They have free ones.

Start with google search "Free CPanel Web Hosting"

For a restaurant you should find a Restaurant SPECIFIC theme at a share site. They have menu plugins
and some have reservation modules and direct payments.

Try GPL.Coffee or https://codexinh.com/search/?query=restaurant

If you are renting a site for a flat rate or a percentage of sales, it must be a Pro design
Do not try to design it yourself.

Restaurants are local and your business could snowball. When one restaurant has one, many of the
other restaurants hear about it and want one too.

You should pick 2 or 3 popular restaurants, audit their current websites, if any, create a website
for them using their menus and make a pitch showing them what they are missing out on.

If they don't buy, pitch it to their competition and when they see their competition on the site, they may go for it.

Whatever you think it is worth, double it and let them haggle you down.

Sincerely,

The Eye
 

50cent

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These sites will always make good money. I had some spare time and got 10 sires set up over the last couple of weeks or so. Got 2 guys firing links at them. Stick with your plan, if you can get them to work, you'll make good money.. I used to do well with this strategy back in the day
 

homeriscool

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As a rank and renter my advice would be to not rush this. Don't try and sell the calls until the site is ranked. It could take 8 - 12 months depending on competition. You want the phone ringing consistently for when you get someone to take the calls. Its a long term project.
 
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