Journal Journey to $10,000/mo by DEC 2016 using Amazon Affiliate

Discussion in 'Case Studies and Journals' started by RZa, Jan 13, 2016.

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  1. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Ok, this is my first case study in any forum. So expect it to be long and boring haha. Also, please ignore my grammar, I am pretty bad at it :p

    I do not consider myself an expert in IM, but the stuff I already know will be enough to get started on this journey. I did not ever created any journey or case study because I wanted to make sure when I do I stick to it till the goal is achieved. As I am involved enough with the project for some time now and feel comfortable enough that I will continue working on it until the result is here, I have started this journey to keep my timeline of work and results.

    What's the Goal?

    Simple, $10K/mo by the end of December 2016 using Amazon Associates. I believe it's not a goal until you decide two points, "what" and "when." I will not call it a goal if try to achieve $10k/mo but do not fix the time by which I achieve it. I have also broken the main goal into pieces/milestones to make sure I am always chasing the target. If I don't do so, I will waste much more time thinking I have until the end of December to achieve the goal. It's also easier to chase the smaller milestones, achieve it and focus on next.

    >>> Main Goal: $10,000/mo by Dec 2016

    Milestone 1: $300/mo by Feb 2016
    Milestone 2: $1,200/mo by Apr 2016
    Milestone 3: $3,500/mo by Jun 2016
    Milestone 4: $6,500/mo by Aug 2016
    Milestone 5: $10,000/mo by Oct 2016


    I targeted to reach the goal by October 2016, leaving 2 extra months as additional months. I will be at my best to meet all the goals by the exact given time, but I believe sometimes things doesn't go as we like to. And it can take a little more time to achieve the Milestone 1, 2. So these 2 extra months will help if anything happens.

    What's the main plan?

    I will build niche sites for Amazon affiliate & rank them in Google. Being in the industry and working on tons of clients niche sites over last 7 years, I have got the base, and I believe this is the time to take action for myself. I have been building niche sites for clients for around 6-7 years but was unable to do for myself as I was always full with work. Last October, I have decided to give it a break and build the fortune for myself. My plan is to build the sites focusing on visitors. Over the last few years I strongly learned that, if you give value to your visitor, there is less likely that you will be affected by outside forces like Google's algorithm changes, etc.

    I will start with few sites, and I plan to increase the number of sites to 50 by the end of 2016. You may ask, why not focus on a few large authority sites rather than many smaller niche sites. Because I want to test the hell out of it. I have kept my large authority sites plan for 2017. I will now be focusing on smaller Amazon sites & will see what works and what not.

    I will try not to lose any money by selling underperforming sites, but will make sure they all have some income before being sold. I will expand the average performing and good performing sites to reach to it's best potential.

    I also have some plan to sell the best performing sites in future when I see I have come to the ceiling for that site, and the sale will give a good amount of cash for next years authority site plan. Sites with good income usually sell for 22-25X of its monthly profit. That's the plan for now, if there are any improvements, I will update the thread later on.

    Resources I have in hand:

    - LongTailPro Platinum & Keyword Planner for Keyword Research
    - ThriveThemes Themes
    - Thrive Content Builder
    - Pricing Table Plugin (For comparison table)
    - Solid VPS (VPS to run the softwares)
    - Scrapebox
    - RankerX
    - Some Proxies
    - Access to SEMRush, Majestic & AHrefs
    - SERPBook Small Plan
    - Private Internet Access VPN

    Resources I am planning to get:

    - GSA SER
    - GSA Captcha Breaker
    - A Good Spinning Software

    Key steps for the whole project:

    1. Market/Competition research & keyword research (Primary & secondary keyword selection):

    This is the most important part of the project. A golden keyword can make your winning chances far better & at least 40% faster. On the other hand, a bad keyword will suck your investment and time while delivering you zero value. I like to operate in niches that have competition because, competition = money is there. I do not want to waste my time and money on a low competition keyword that give me $10 per month. Rather, I will operate in somewhat competition niche, wait for the results, and bank when I rank. Some people may disagree with me, but this is something I believe is the way to success. ​

    I will work the buyer keywords only as my plan is to sell stuff with my reviews. So if the keyword is not buyer keyword, there is no money no matter what competition and how many searches it has. My primary keyword will have 3000-8000 monthly searches along with 15-20 secondary keywords. I can easily get the secondary searches by going through my competitors sites keyword via SEMRush. SEMRush does a pretty awesome job showing all the keywords my competitors are ranking for. I hand-pick a few keywords that I believe will be best supporting keywords for my main keyword. ​

    2. Amazon product selection:

    That's an easy part, Amazon shows best seller products list in their website. The list gets me some products to target. Then I also search for the products and do some good research to deliver to my visitors. Here I am looking for 10 products to target and each of it will have a good review on the site. I do not go for the highest priced products in the category to increase my commission; rather I look what people wants & likes in the products. Positioning myself in the buyers position makes the process easy for me. Again, think of the customer, not your commission number.​

    3. Content strategy development (Pillar, review & general articles):

    Expanded below.​

    4. Content writing stage:

    After my products list & keywords are ready, I outsource my content writing stage. I have instructed the writers to write easy to understand review & pillar content. I have asked them to help the visitors as much as possible, not hard selling the products. I tend to keep things natural, and I believe Google will give value to my websites that provide actual value to visitors.​

    5. Website setup & make it live:

    I use themes from ThriveThemes for my sites, supported with Thrive Content Builder. This plugin is just more than awesome for the type of site I am developing. It's super easy to use & it doesn't take long to build the site the way I want. It has some other features as I can insert buttons etc. to make the site even more conversion friendly.​

    6. Social accounts setup & signals:

    As I am building the sites on new domains rather than expired one, they are usually placed in Google's sandbox. I am seeing it takes around 4-5 months now to fully unleash websites ranking potential, but I believe social signals will help in starting days. It's quite natural to get social signals as websites intend to promote their websites in social networks first rather than building links. I am slowly driving social signals to the site, and I plan to start building links after they begin to rank naturally.​

    7. SEO:

    Time for actual link building. I have not started yet on this one, but I am testing what my tools can do. I have my rough link building plan ready, but it's vague now at this moment. But I will tell what I have decided.​

    • Some expired web 2.0: I have scraped some expired web 2.0 accounts like Tumblr, Blogspot, etc. using Scrapebox. They already have got page authority & good majestic TF/CF metrics. They can give some initial visibility. I have got some web 2.0 ready with articles. I will use some of them for Tier 1, and most of them for Tier 2. It can be kind of unnatural to get all links for web 2.0's initially, especially in same platforms. If I see some positive movement, I will scrape again later on, to build some more.
    • I have planned to do most of the things on Tier 1 manually; these are the links that will push my websites ranking, and I don't want to take a chance at this moment. But as I have told, I am planning to build around 50 sites by the end of December, I can even test software in Tier 1. Whatever the case is, I have planned to use RankerX to some extend in Tier 1. I have read some great reviews about RankerX and I am willing to see what the hype is all about. But I will only use the RankerX Premium lists (Web 2.0, Articles, Social, some Bookmarks, etc.) on T1. Content will be all unique hand written on T1. About PBN? Will talk later ;)
    • According to my rough plan Tier 2 will be fully on RankerX. I will use the lists other than premium one on Tier 2. I have just done a little test on account creation and article posting, the success rate is pretty good. I need some spinning software for T2 to get great content for my T2. I still have not got one yet. Hopefully, the admin can help :)
    • Tier 3 will be on the best, GSA! I have not yet purchased the software, but it's on my list to get asap. I know it has a steep learning curve, but I will figure it out by giving it some time. Will do mass backlinking here, will try on contextual more, not sure, however, will decide later.
    • About indexing the links, I know it's not easy anymore to index the backlinks. I am still looking for a real solution to index the links I build. It will slow things down if I am unable to find one.

    8. BANK:

    No matter how far it is, I am sure I will reach my goal because I finally have the mentality of not giving up. I have already worked for the last couple of months, and I know it's not far when I can start to bank. It's the end of 2016, I am achieving my goal, mark it.​

    What content & website strategy:

    Nothing new here other than making sure I deliver value to the visitors. Initially, each of my website will have 15000 words content that I will grow over a couple of months.

    Each website will have -

    1. 4000 words pillar articles for homepage
    2. 1000 words review content each for 10 products
    3. Blog section for general content (How to, guides, tips, etc.)


    Other than the pillar and review content, I am going to publish general how to, or guide type content. General content will add value to the site directly and will reduce my websites affiliate type content's percentage. This is to avoid the Thin Content penalty Google usually gives to small affiliate sites. After all the review & pillar contents are posted, I start publishing the general content.

    The frequency is 5 articles per week, except the weekends, I will stop when the total number of articles reaches 50. It will take 2.5 months to complete the posting. The content length for each general articles will be around 500-600 words, and after all the content is finished total word count of my each site will be close to 42,000 words which I think is enough for the sites to rank and bank.

    Work done already:

    As said before I have already started working on the project, I have advanced few steps. I have already got 3 sites ready; stats will be given below. I have currently paused the site building, will start again in start of Feb. I am currently working on the SEO steps & software to make sure when I start building links in few days, everything goes smoothly.

    Now, here are the 3 sites stats as promised, I will not be revealing any websites address or niches as I want to protect my assets as much as I can.

    Site 1:
    Monthly Searches: 8000
    Keyword Difficulty: Moderate
    Amazon Price Range: $40-$150
    Site Indexed: Yes (~30 days)
    Social Signals: Started
    Link Building: Not Started


    Semrush is showing the site is ranked under 100 for around 50 keywords, having less than 100 searches each keyword. However, they are not my concern at this moment. It's under 200 for the primary keyword. Heavy dancing on all keywords. I hope after the link building campaign starts, things will begin to settle down.

    Site 2:
    Monthly Searches: 3000
    Keyword Difficulty: Moderate
    Amazon Price Range: $60 - $200
    Site Indexed: Yes (~20 days)
    Social Signals: Started
    Link Building: Not Started


    Site 3:
    Monthly Searches: 5000
    Keyword Difficulty: Moderate
    Amazon Price Range: $60-$180
    Site Indexed: Yes (~15 days)
    Social Signals: Started
    Link Building: Not Started


    I will start backlinking for Site 1 in 4-5 days, starting with links my competitors have. Will dig the links of the competitors using Majestic & Ahrefs and will see if I can find some links from their link profile. I will update more when I start to build links.

    The PBN Plan:

    PBN is of course in my plan, but not at this moment. As said I have paused giving service to other people for this project, I do not currently have any income flow. I will go out of money if I start PBN now, but I am planning to start selling in fewer quantity to make sure I can fund this project well. I have quite good knowledge of PBN and how it works, and I believe it will not be very difficult to build my own and manage. I am not looking to buy links for any of my site, or do not have any plan to partner network, everything I need I will try to do on my own. Shared PBN will result in ruining the whole effort. But I admit, to roll things faster, I will need PBN. I will try and start building PBN sites in a smaller scale as soon as I can.

    Conclusion:

    Well that's pretty much what I have planned to do and already working on the plan. I am fully determined to get these things done and achieve my goal. I am currently reading some motivational/self-help writings to help me keep myself motivated. The more time is passing by, the less I need those readings. I guess that's because I have the full belief now that I will succeed. I will try and give updates as much as possible after my work is done. Stay tuned :)
     
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  2. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Update:

    Yesterday, I made another 5 web 2.0's based on expired domains with PA. Each web 2.0 's are updated with 3 articles. I have tried to make the web 2.0's as real as possible. I have not linked yet to any of the sites, but I am aging the properties.

    I have got some general articles for the money sites, I will schedule them today as planned before. The schedule will be done according to the plan, 5 articles per 7 days.

    Question:

    As the update couple of days back was suspected as penguin, and given that I have not built any links, I was't worried.

    But yesterday I had a read that it was a core update, and Google Panda is now a part of Google core algo. Although I was't ranked much, but around under 200 for the main keywords. I can see they are gone for couple of days now.

    What do you think is the possibility to be affected by the algo. There are some keywords still rising from yesterday, and some dropping.

    Given that I have not yet started building links, do you think it was panda? Or just a normal Google dance? Appreciate your reply.
     
  3. emp

    emp Senior Member

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    Normal dancing.
     
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  4. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Thanks for replying! I also think it's normal dance now. Some of the keywords started to come back stronger than before.
     
  5. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Update:

    Done with today's work. I have scheduled all the posts I had in hand for the sites.

    Site 1: 10 new articles scheduled
    Site 2: 5 new articles scheduled
    Site 3: 8 new articles scheduled

    I went ahead & listed 8 direct competitors of Site 1 today. I used SEMRush to get the initial list & searched using a US IP to get the exact competing sites. I have dropped sites that were penalized recently or shows some drops in traffic. I started digging their backlink profile for link prospects (good blog comments, guest posts etc). If I can get the links they got other than PBN, this will be a boost.

    I have noted around 50 good links till now, and will continue tomorrow with this. Then I will start building links to Site 1. I have already got some web 2.0's ready to link on and hopefully will start in couple of days as well.

    I have opened up Hootsuite today to schedule some posts on social media profiles of all sites as well.

    So far things are going well. But I will try and fasten things around as Site 2 & 3 are also in queue for the same steps.
     
  6. voLdie

    voLdie New Member

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    The best way to do this IMO is to add another tier to GSA (Kitchen Sink) and slam those links with more contextuals till there indexed.

    I would just never trust a service with all of my links and blindly hope there hitting my links in a non-harmful way.
     
  7. RZa

    RZa Member

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    That seems good. But I think it will still be a slow process, however its better late than never.
     
  8. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Update:

    It seems like there is a Google Update again!

    https://algoroo.com/

    The good news is, all 3 of my sites have got increased visibility and the ranking is rising.

    I have finally started building the backlinks for Site 1, I have tried placing links on pages that have competitors links. And I have got some links live as well. I have not tried to get the links noticed by Google yet. They will be noticed by Google in some matter of days. So far 20 manual links was built for Site 1, and more or less all pages have good PA, 10-40, which is good. Social medias, and bookmarks are still on.

    I have started digging the competitors links for Site 2 & 3 and I expect to finish by tomorrow. Will start building links once the list is made.

    That's the update till now, will report once I have an update again!
     
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  9. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Update:

    I got left behind my schedule due to being sick for couple of days as I caught cold. Still trying to recover.

    However, things aren't stopped completely, I led a content marathon for the first tier web 2.0's for all my sites, and I have around 35 content ready for posting into web 2.0's. I am trying to build real web 2.0's covering my tiers. I have done some decent scraping of expired web 2.0's that have over 35 PA, and I am now filling them with content. 3 x 500 words will go into each web 2.0 now. Haven'ed yet linked them with sites, but planning on doing so very soon.

    I have sold a website recently that is in relevant niche of my Site 2. And I have asked the new owner if he likes to link to my site 2, and he agreed. Quite good haha. Got a free homepage link for free.

    Social signals are still ON daily basis, as there are new general blog posts being posted everyday.

    I am having a close look at SEMRush, and the number of keywords ranked for each site is growing everyday now.

    I guess I am on the right track now, I will update once I have more update.

    Thanks!
     
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  10. Avramoski

    Avramoski Member

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    Your journal is awesome RZa. I must admit that YOU were the reason for making my own journal (but with modest earnings :) )
     
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  11. RZa

    RZa Member

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    It's an honor. Thank you! I am glad you have opened your own journey here, it definitely helps to have a documentation of everything you have done.

    All the best with your journey, I will be following too :)
     
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  12. RZa

    RZa Member

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    Update:

    I am seriously behind my schedule due to sickness. I caught severe cold in last week, and still trying to recover. The sickness took over me, and I couldn't breath. I already have issues with breathing for few years, and the cold made things nasty.

    Although I could not work much, but I spent my times reading and I do believe learning is never counted as waste of time. I know I learnt few stuffs and I am definitely willing to apply those on the project.

    However, although I was off work, but I still did some tasks that were needed. I have planned all my tier 1 links and built a package that I can drip feed over 20 days. I have kept huge diversity in the Tier 1 and I have also selected the anchor text distribution percentage.

    I am opting for a bit less than 10% exact anchor for my main keyword, 20% LSI & other keywords, 30% generic & 40% naked URL. I hope this will work. My team is already working on the tier 1 links, but it's currently slow because I am not being able to fully concentrate & direct stuffs. However, I have planned to work again from Sunday, I hope everything will start rolling fast again.

    I will update again within 3-4 days and hopefully I will be able to say, everything's alright :)
     
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  13. WaterCooler

    WaterCooler New Member

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    How's this project going?
     
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  14. Bender Bending Rodríguez

    Bender Bending Rodríguez Senior Member

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    Your $10,000/month goal is unrealistic. Here's why:

    You can guess that the search volume is 3x what's reported on Google Keyword Tool. You can assume a 50% CTR at #1 on the SERPs and a 2% conversion rate once they land on your site. Then use whatever Amazon Affiliate cut you're at to figure out how much traffic you'll need to meet your goal.

    So, If you're selling a $50 product and are at the 7% rate, that's $3.50 for every product sold. To get $10,000, that's 2,857 conversions/month. At 2% conversion rate, you'll need 140,000+ visitors/month. Have you gotten a site to 140k/visitors per month before? Have you done that in less than a year?

    That's 4,600+ visitors/day.

    With your site's search volumes, you'll need 30 successful sites by October to meet your goal.

    You better get back to the drawing board dude.
     
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  15. RZa

    RZa Member

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    I am on the right track for your information. I already got 8 sites running as we speak. I started with 3 sites of course, but growing the portfolio has always my priority. However, So you think the site will only rank for only 1 keyword, haha that's definitely not the case. The best site of mine (site 3) is currently ranking for 1.4k keywords, and a lots of them are perfect long tail buying keyword, and I am currently ranking good. The main keyword is in the first page for site 2 & 3, but I have not yet hit the first position yet. Still long way to go.

    I am not just doing the math, this and that. I am taking action to grow the portfolio as big as I can, and also working the best to rank better everything the ones I already have. I never said it's going to be 1 site.
     
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  16. WaterCooler

    WaterCooler New Member

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    Cool to hear, from the overall list of "tools" you're using I think I know more or less the blog you may have been inspired from.

    How do you like serpbook with your amazon site tracking compared to "regular rank trackers"? I've been on their mailing list and follow ccarter here and there but sometimes serpbook looks a little overkill.

    I have a couple sites up that were made and cleaning up the onpage seo at the moment. First site I'm buying a Hoth package just to get it going while I clean up the other site and work on another older adsense site I plan to use Rankerx, GSA SER on. Any recommended blogs you could point me to regarding how you plan to use Rankerx etc?

    I wasn't sure if running the diagram templates as is or this an that etc. I was basically going to mimic the Hoth but use wordai to spin and just clean that up for the T1's.
     
  17. Bender Bending Rodríguez

    Bender Bending Rodríguez Senior Member

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    So what's your current traffic volume and earnings? The 3x multiplier that was added to Google's search volumes was there to take longtail keywords into account.
     
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  18. monu rohila

    monu rohila New Member

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    would like to follow your case study, please update current status...
     
  19. Bender Bending Rodríguez

    Bender Bending Rodríguez Senior Member

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    It looks like he quit in May 2016.
     
  20. cardine

    cardine Administrator Staff Member

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    In general I have never seen a case study with goals like this work out:
    work out.

    If you had something that scaled so predictably you wouldn't know it until after you already start working on it. I think far too often people have a "good" idea and then start to do some pie in the sky scaling calculations without actually spending some time in the weeds and figuring out how everything comes together. It might be that something scales linearly like this, it might plateau for a long time and then be very successful, or it might flop completely, but creating ambitious milestones without incredibly sound reasoning as to why that milestone is practical (think SMART goals that @emp talks about) you are putting yourself in a position where you'll be giving up in a couple months once you miss your first unrealistic milestone you set for yourself.