Lack of Effort, Equals Lack of Results

Authority Site Update (September 2012)

Lack Of Effort

Just based on the title, I think you know where this is going. Looking at the stats from when my site was first indexed at the start of April there was a steady increase in traffic figures month by month up until August and I was pleased with how early progress was going.

For some reason I switched into ‘rest on my laurels’ mode and my effort waned somewhat, and this coupled with our British summer finally arriving meant my site didn’t get as much attention as it should have. Traffic figures were higher at the end of August, but this was from the work I had put in during July.

September was very much in the same vein and a combination of a lot of socialising and a step up in my half marathon training meant time for work wasn’t as abundant and again my site didn’t see as much effort put in as it should have.

I could make excuses all day that I didn’t have enough time or whatever, but the simple fact is I didn’t try hard enough and I should have MADE time for it, and even though I knew I wasn’t doing the best I could at the time, it is only now looking at the stats that I clearly see this way of working isn’t good enough.

September Stats

The lack of effort through August and September is now showing up in this month’s stats, where for the first time the visitor numbers are worse than they were in the previous month.

Visits: 718 (-24)

New Visits: 488 (-82)

Return Visits: 230 (+36)

Visits from SE’s: 511 (-100)

Number of Keywords: 251 (-68)

Visits by Referal: 100 (+69) – Mainly traffic from Sunil and Eric’s blogs

Direct Visits: 100 (+18)

Avg. Page Views: 3.68 (+0.77)

Avg. Time on Site: 04:31 (-17sec)

Avg. Time on Page: 02:00 (-31sec)

Bounce Rate: 63.65% (-1.27%)

Revenue

- Ebay Partner Network: £5.74

- Adsense: £1.18

- Total: £6.92

As you can see a lot of the traffic figures are down this month, and while there are improvements in other areas, on the whole it’s not the direction the site needs to be going in. A big thing I’ve been trying to improve recently is bounce rate as I’m not happy with where it is (under 50% and I’d be happy) . I took a couple of steps to try and improve it such as adding internal links in the first paragraph of the pages that had the worst bounce rate, and making sure my load times where up to scratch. These things have made a slight difference as it was hovering nearer 65% over the previous months, but it’s not enough.

I have noticed that my highest bounce rate pages are very text heavy and I wonder if people are reaching the pages and thinking “bollocks to that, too much reading”. It’s only speculation, but there’s obviously something people aren’t liking and I’m very sure it’s not the quality of the content. I’m thinking of trialling cutting the long guides down into maybe two or three parts so people don’t feel like it’s such a big task to get through it.

It’s not all bad

If you read my last blog post you’ll know I had a couple of things happen that made me feel pretty good, one was seeing my site mentioned on a forum in the states that recommended people to read a piece of content I had written, the other setting up Aweber and getting my first sign up within 24 hours. These two things made me realise that what I’m doing is helpful to people and they are enjoying it and want to see what else I have to say, a massive confidence and motivation boost.

I’ve since only had one other sign up to my newsletter, but it felt almost as good. Another thing I noticed was I had some traffic from Facebook, so someone has shared something but annoyingly I can’t see who shared it or what it was. If anyone knows how I would love to hear it!

What I want to do in October

With the realisation that I can’t afford to sit back and expect things to happen, I now know that effort levels need to get back to where they were in my site’s earlier months, and so all cylinders are well and truly firing for October.

One thing I noticed was that without a solid list of content to write I was just winging it and thought of content to write as and when, where as in spring and early summer I had a list of 20-25 articles to write, all of which had the keyword research already done so it was as simple as moving on to the next when I had finished the last.

With that in mind, in the first few days of October I spent a good few hours creating a list of content to write for my site, all with keyword research already done. This should keep me going from a content perspective for quite a few months.

Aside from knocking out content, I want to also start some light link building this month. It’s something I’ve shied away from in the past, but I’m realising it simply has to be done. I also want to get a little more involved with others in my space and I will be going out and looking for other sites, forums and blogs to get in touch with and spread myself around. There’s also quite an active audience for motorcycles on Reddit, but I’m not quite sure how to approach that one yet.

Calling myself out!

I’ve never really had any solid goals to aim for since I started internet marketing, but in an attempt to create accountability as well as something to work towards I’ve decided to set one.

I want to be making £1000 per month from this website by July the 5th (my birthday) next year. That’s 10 months away so I feel with good consistent effort I should be able to get there with the content and monetisation strategies I have in mind. I realise that this is in fact an external goal so it’s not something I can fully control, so I’m adding a caveat.

I want to be making £1000 per month from my site, but IF I don’t reach that target I want to be able to say I did everything in my power to reach it, that way I can still be satisfied that it wasn’t my own lack of effort that stopped me getting there. Wish me luck peeps!

Onwards and upwards from here ladies and gents. Let’s all have a fantastic end to the year.

Good luck.

Posted in Authority Posts

It’s the little things

With this being my first stab at creating a website that adds value to the internet and people’s lives and with the site still being in its infancy, it’s fair to say this is a pretty new experience for me even though I’ve made a number of sites in the past.

Very recently I had two ‘feel good’ moments that might not mean much to the uber experienced internet marketer, but to me it was just a little reminder to Keep Calm and Carry On. Not only that but it gave me huge satisfaction and had me grinning from ear to ear.

The first came from one of my multiple Google Analytics visits (I really must kerb that horrible habit) when I noticed I had a small spike in referral traffic over a couple of days, and after doing a little bit of delving I found this biker forum in the US that had linked to one of the articles on my site that he recommended reading, after which he then went on to say my site has “a lot of other good information”.

It was a great feeling and something I’ve never seen before from the affiliate sites of old I used to create.

My second feel good moment came after I had gone through the (longer than I thought) process of setting up my email list with Aweber. I wanted to get my email list up as soon as possible so I didn’t spend the time creating an eBook as an incentive, but I did use four articles on my site that I created introductions to for my follow up emails that my autoresponder would send out (7 days apart), plus I put in a fifth email basically thanking them for joining and asking what would you like to see next.

The task was a lot more long winded than I first imagined, and even after I had spent hours getting my follow up emails put together and creating the confirmation pages on my site I then had to get my head around Aweber which took a further few hours.

Anyway…..after all that and once I’d finally got Aweber set up and a web form on my site, within 24 hours I had my first sign up to my newsletter (I didn’t think I should count my girlfriend’s, dad’s and dad’s mate’s sign ups). Another moment that had me grinning from ear to ear!

As I said, both these things might seem trivial to a lot of people, but it had me feeling majorly pumped and good about the work I’ve put in so far. Quite obviously it doesn’t end here though. Much more to do.

Anyone else experienced in little wins recently?

Posted in Feel Good Moments

Pistols at Dawn – Authority Site Duel

Bike Track Days HubAs you may have read on my about page, the effort I’ve put into my online business hasn’t been at the highest level, and while this year I’ve made strides with my mindset and the way I work there’s still a little more to go. When I saw Sunil and Eric had set about organising an Authority Site Duel with an open invitation, I felt this was a prime opportunity for a virtual kick up the backside.

So this is my introduction for the Authority Site Duel.

My site

The site I will be using for this duel is Bike Track Days Hub. It’s a site I started working on not long into 2012 with the intention of making it a complete resource for both new and existing participants in bike track days. I myself take part in bike track days so I have a lot of personal experience in this activity, but I also have a lot to learn (which will double up as content for my readers), so after some extensive keyword research I decided this was going to be my topic.

The current state

The site was submitted to the search engines in April and was indexed on the 7th, making the site just over 5 months old according to the SEs. Up till now all I have concentrated on is writing content for the site (I’ve written 35 high quality pieces of content) and haven’t really touched social marketing yet, or any link building because of the current issues revolving around this area.

I have made no attempts at monetising the site yet and would prefer to have some healthy traffic figures before I do that. The site had 724 visitors in August (84% from SEs). I have got the Adsense bar on the right as well as a couple of affiliate links and ebay partner network links dotted around where I feel they fit nicely, but again these are not true attempts to monetise the site. The site made £9.33 in the month of August. CHING CHING!

Concerns and Potential

I must admit I have naturally had concerns in these early stages that I may not have picked a good niche as it’s not really a common, competitive niche, but having done the keyword research and knowing first hand of the wide variety of subjects I can cover that people are looking for based on the forums I frequent, it makes me feel that this is a good project to pursue. The fact that there is nothing like it on the web (like Pat’s Security Guard Training HQ) could go one of two ways; it could fall on its face because it’s just not needed, or it could end up being the one and only resource people go to for everything bike track days. Time will tell.

Goals

Short term I just want to continue putting at least one high quality article/guide up a week, as well as setting up an email opt in on the site. I also want to research the ideas I’ve had for ebooks and maybe pick one that I will start to pursue in the coming months.

Long term I hope to have an ebook or two on the site, as well as other ways of monetising the site like directories and maybe lead generation agreements with some of the track day organisers. I’ve also had the idea of a classifieds section for people who wish to buy and sell anything related to bike track days. This could be a great way to monetise the site, but I need to look further into how it would need to be set up and how to get people posting items on there in the first place.

Time to get busy

This intro was a bit longer than I anticipated, but that just about covers it. I’ll be putting updates for the progress of the site up here for everyone to see and hopefully learn from. Now it’s time to get busy, those visitor figures won’t raise themselves you know.

Posted in Authority Posts

Quick Introduction

Hi all,

This is just a quick intro to me and this blog (you can read more on my about page). I started internet marketing back in 2009 creating affiliate websites (niche and mirco niche sites), but with a lack of effort in a changing landscape my success wasn’t the best.

I’m taking a new approach that a lot of people are discovering and that is to build a site that visitors find useful, one they will bookmark, share with their friends, come back to for more, and in the best case leave with a smile. It’s about creating content with the reader in mind, not the search engines and your wallet.

I haven’t built success on the internet yet, but with sheer persistence and bloody-mindedness I know I will get there eventually.

I hope you enjoy this blog, my experiences and general ramblings that will inevitably come during my quest for financial and occupational freedom.

 

Posted in Miscellaneous