Hey ya’ll, I’m back for my scheduled monthly update on the content site I started in Jan – thanks for following along.
If you want to check out how I grew the site to where it’s at now, you can find my previous posts here:
If you’re new here, I started a brand-new site on the 1st of this year with some very simple goals:
- Publish as much SEO-focused content around low-comp keywords as possible
- Invest no time or money in link building or outreach
- Monetize preliminary with ads and some affiliate stuff where possible
- Create a nice passive income stream
Ad rates are finally hitting what I was expected when I started the site (obviously not expecting the pandemic to hit), so it’s starting to feel more like how I expected the site to go now!
If you want to know exactly how I’m building this site, essentially there are two key elements;
- Keyword research – You can read how I find low competition keywords here.
- SEO-focused content – You can read how I write and format my articles so they rank well here.
That’s pretty much all there is to it. When you know how to write SEO content that ranks, it’s just rinse and repeat!
Here’s a look at how it’s performing:
Traffic and Earnings Stats for Jan-August 2020
|Month||# of articles||Pageviews||Ezoic earnings ($)||AdSense earnings ($)||Affiliate earnings ($)||Total ($)|
Ezoic Earnings for August
A huge jump in Ezoic earnings this month from $572.68 to $1,012.76. This is mostly due to the EPMV increasing from $13.58 to $20.58.
Not all of this was organic, I also increased my Premium subscription from $110/mo to $220/mo. Not all of the $220 is a cost to this site, I have a few sites on Ezoic and the subscription applies to all of my sites.
I see a lot of questions regarding Ezoic’s Premium plan, here’s the basics:
What Is Ezoic Premium?
In short, if you’re using Ezoic you may be invited to join their Premium plan. This means you can choose to pay a monthly fee (based on your current monthly earnings) and this gives you access to a pool of Premium advertisers they have deals with.
They will then show ads from those advertising partners on your site, and you’ll earn a share of that revenue. Makes sense?
Is Ezoic Premium Worth It?
Ezoic say themselves that results will vary and there are no guarantees. I’ve been using Premium for almost a year and to-date I’ve had a 161% return on the money I’ve paid in.
That means, for every $1,000 I’ve paid, I’ve earned $1,610 back. So, for me it’s been worth it and that’s why I’m paying the maximum they’ll allow me to.
If you’re not yet using Ezoic you should sign up and at least give them a try. I’d appreciate it if you used my affiliate link here – let me know if you do and I’ll be happy to help in any way I can.
How Do You Get AdSense Earnings Too?
I get asked this a lot too. Ezoic lets – even recommends – you keep your Google AdSense code on your site so you can split test if your site or pages are performing better with Ezoic or AdSense.
I’m sending 100% of my traffic to Ezoic as it’s literally 10x the revenue of AdSense alone, but as a result some AdSense ads still show on mobile.
Mostly the formats that Ezoic do not use, like the floating ad at the top of the page and the full-screen one that pops up when clicking through to different pages. (that’s one of the most annoying ads ever)
As a result I made an additional $122.40 in ad revenue from Google AdSense in August, I can’t complain.
Amazon Earnings for August
I only added a couple of Amazon links this month, so no surprise that earnings aren’t going up. In fact, despite having more clicks that last month, earnings are down from $54 – but that’s just variance, I guess.
My main focus is ad revenue as I explained earlier. I literally only add Amazon links to products that are very relevant to the post in a contextual way. I don’t write any “best” or “top” posts.
Third-Party Affiliate Earnings for August
Now, this is the stuff that gets me excited. This is a small(ish) family run business I’m referring sales to, so it feels like I’m actually helping them with their digital presence.
I get 10% per sale, and as you can see the conversion rate is lower than Amazon but the ROI is a lot higher. I’m thinking about ways to send more traffic to these guys over Amazon for sure.
It’s not as simple as swapping out Amazon links though. This vendor sells items that are not for sale on Amazon. That makes you question – what the hell is not for sale on Amazon, right? 😉
Traffic Stats for August
I took my foot off the gas for the two previous months; June and July. As a result, the site slowed in growth.
This month I got back on track and put in a huge effort to see if I could right the ship – and I’m pretty happy with the results.
I published 72 articles (wow that sounds a lot), I probably put in about 100 hours of work. Still a part-time effort for sure as I have loads of other things going on, but this burst of articles resulted in some decent movement (July vs August):
- Pageviews increased by 16.71%
- Impressions increased by 19.90%
- Hit 2k pageviews in a day for the first time (3 times)
- Most importantly, earnings went up 66.7%!
Wrapping Up: Month in Review and What’s Next
I set myself the goal of publishing 500 articles by the end of the year, so that’s what I’ll do. That means an average of 32 articles per month for the remainder of the year.
I think I’m going to step up the competition and search volume a notch next month and see if I can rank for some bigger terms. I still have no real “authority” according to tools like Moz where my site is a DA 8, but I think I have more authority than that in Google’s eyes. We shall see.
I’m hoping (and I don’t see any reason why not – barring a Google update) that I now have a passive asset bringing in at least $1k/mo.
The ROI to-date on my time and the minimal expenses is fine by me, so I’ll continue doing what’s worked so far and adjust as I go.
I’ve heard some really positive stuff from members of the community here and on Reddit using a similar model to me and it makes me warm and fussy inside to hear that. Congrats to everyone making something happen, regardless if you’re just starting or seeing some results.
Feel free to drop and questions, progress updates, or feedback below. Set a goal and never give up peeps, never.