We are nearing the end of 2021 and I feel busier than I've felt in prior months.
I have been reviewing and planning what I want to do this coming month, quarter and year for my sites. I do monthly reviews and plans, but the end of the year is always a bit busier when planning for a year out.
The planning is frustrating too when I'm locked in to an agreement with Ezoic based on language that's not there. If anyone is in their Premium Accelerators Program, let me know. I've got some questions for you!
I still like Ezoic and feel it's the best option for people who don't have sites with 50K+ monthly pageviews. I will still shamelessly share my Ezoic affiliate link, but this situation has just frustrated the heck out of me with my "Publisher Success Manager."
I'm considering selling my site and asked a couple clarification questions about the agreement. But then they tell me about a clause that's not in the agreement, nor was it clarified when we discussed the agreement months ago. This would severely limit the number of potential buyers of the site if I were to try and sell it. But who knows, it could open up a new demo of buyers who really want to get into Ezoic or already love Ezoic.
I'm not sponsored by Ezoic either, just one of the many users of their platform and a supporter. This is just one of those things that happens with relationships. You run into complications.
That's the tough thing about planning - you never know what will happen. You run into obstacles that you could not have foreseen and all you can do is roll with the punches.
I don't think I've ever had a plan go 100% as planned, so I always like to think about scenarios that can happen and create alternate plans. These might be more back-of-the-napkin types of plans, but I like to think about them, so I'm not completely surprised.
I was creating a plan to sell the site on one of the marketplaces and use the money on other sites, but more importantly, use it for the family.
But now I may need to find a different way to sell it or continue to grow it for more monthly revenues. I was talking to another experienced affiliate site owner about it and he said I should continue to grow it, because it's solid and still has room to grow. It's just a matter if I want to continue with the niche.
How about you? Do you do monthly, quarterly, or yearly reviews and plans?
Have a great weekend and week ahead with your sites!
Google algorithm updates in 2021
Oncrawl has a nice infographic overview of the 2021 Google updates. You can use it in combination with your Google Search Console and Google Analytics Traffic to see if you see any patterns with the updates that you might not have noticed.
22 possible updates in 12 months. Just saying...
SEO Office Hours, December 10th, 2021
Onely's recap of Google's SEO Office Hours with John Mueller last week. The topics covered that are good to know:
- Website downtime vs. ranking
- 304 response code vs. crawling
- Crawl requests from mobile vs. desktop
- Discovered/Crawled ‒ currently not indexed report
- Indexing of m-dot websites
- Dealing with outdated blogs
- Indexing issues of new articles
Indexing SEO 101: How To Create an Indexing Strategy for Your Website
This is a good overview article by Onely about indexing pages on your site and how to optimize crawl budget, so Google and other search engines are only crawling the valuable pages on your site.
Many beginners building niche sites will not know about crawl budget and reasons for not indexing pages or using canonical tags.
For example, I don't index category or tag pages because of potential duplicate content issues. If you like to show large portions of articles (or the whole article) in category pages, you now have the same content on the /category page and the /post-name article.
100 Things to know about Google Core Updates
Nice list from Marie Haynes of 100 things to know about Google updates. It's a video, but there's a transcript of it too that's easier to sift through.
8 SEO Predictions for 2022 by Mark & Gael + Guests
Another year has gone by - which means it is time for our yearly SEO Predictions! In this episode, Authority Hackers reviews last year's predictions and predicts what they think will happen in 2022. Here's an overview of the video:
- Recap on 2021 predictions
- Reviews Will be Targeted More by Google
- Guest Post Farms Will Get Hit - I hope so!
- Predictions of Kyle Roof - This is good with his 3-month plan for all your sites - Get organized!
- AI Content Will Replace Cheaper Writers
- Predictions of Michal Suski
- Predictions of Glen Allsopp
- Info content that sells products
- Predictions of Mark Mars - Definitely agree that few quality links > many average links.
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree?
Tools and Resources
Great Deals Out There for Niche Site and Content Creators
Melon - Livestream through your browser in 1080p. Simultaneously livestream to Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Twitch, and more. This looks like one of the best livestream deals and the quality is good too in testing.
TrueRanker - Step up your SEO strategy by finding and tracking the most relevant keywords with this lifetime deal. It's one of the best values per keyword that I've seen for a keyword tracker. $59 for 500 keywords and $118 for 2k.
Gravitec - This gives your site a way to send push notifications to subscribers. For example, let your subscribers know when a new post is published or create a drip campaign to send notifications over time.
Vonza - Create, market, and sell all your courses, physical and digital products using just one platform.
Frase Update: New Outline Builder, AI Drafts, and More
Frase announced the release of a new outline builder, an automatic draft generator, and more. They keep pumping out new features and updates to make writing faster.
In the Authority Hackers video, they predict that AI content will replace cheap writers. What Frase has just put out is Step 1 in my eyes. Frase has become a great writing assistant for me on top of their content optimizer.
Take a look at the video and give Frase a try with their 7-day trial.
What Is Content Writing? 13 Tips for Creating Amazing Content
A good overview for beginners on writing content and best practices. They have some good tips here that even experienced writers/editors will sometimes forget. Here are some of their tips:
- Use a template
- Create a proven outline
- Make it share-worthy
- Give your post a unique angle
- Establish credibility
- Show, don’t tell
- Craft a captivating headline
- Kickstart your intro with the PAS formula (Problem-Agitate-Solve)
- Make your post easy to read with the ASMR formula
100 Blogs That Accept Guest Posts for Backlinks & Brand Awareness 2021
Looking for blogs that accept guest posts? Check out this verified list of over 100 guest posting sites in multiple niches!
This is a good list of quality sites that accept guest posts. Most of the time, I suggest people to stay away from working with "write for us" sites to do outreach, but these 100 sites are quality ones that will help, rather than harm, your site.
WordPress SEO: 20 Tips and Best Practices
Since the majority of niche site builders use WordPress, it's good to make sure you're doing all you can to improve your site's SEO. Ahrefs has a list of 20 WordPress tips to ensure that Google is getting what it needs out of your WordPress site.
They suggest some plugins, including their own, but there are always alternatives to try out as well. For example, they suggest Yoast SEO as the all-in-one SEO plugin, but Rank Math is much better in my opinion. Maybe because Rank math cancels out the point of the Ahrefs plugin? I'm not completely sure because I haven't used the Ahrefs plugin before, but the description in the article seems like it does.
7 Winning SEO Tests from SearchPilot
SEO A/B tests are the only way to know if changes will or won't work for your site. Search Pilot shows 7 winning SEO tests in this article. If you plan to try any of these, be sure to make note of how you plan to track whether the changes are helpful or not. Here are the 7 tests run:
- Increasing the number of related article links
- Adding internal category links to the home page footer
- Localising/localizing product content for a US website
- Adding the current month and year to title tags
- Adding content to target featured snippets
- Including the brand at the beginning of the title
- Bringing content out of tabs
Do Links Still Matter for Rankings? A Study by Ahrefs
Ahrefs's blog was busy this week.
Do you disavow links in your Google Search Console?
This is an interesting case study about what happened when they disavowed links to three pages. The results are interesting and the summary of it is that it's not recommended to disavow links.
Alexa.com Going Away - The Old Tool SEOs Used To Determine Google Rankings
Back in the early 2000s Alexa was often referred to with rankings. SEOs use it like they use PageRank, and how they now use Domain Authority/Rating.
Amazon has announced they're shutting odwn Alexa.com on May 1, 2022. There are still many people on Fiverr selling their services to improve your USA and Global Alexa Ranks, so they'll probably move on to DR and DA soon enough.
Google's John Mueller also wrote a good bye poem for it, so you can check it out in the article.
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Have a great week with taking your niche sites to another level!