I've been inspired lately that many of the things I've been working on with my sites and the way I do them will work out in the end.
A lot of that has to do with the Q&As I've been doing with other Niche Creators. I ask everyone the same 20 questions plus a Bonus question where they can add anything else they'd like.
What's inspired me is that we're all on the same journey, yet it's different for everyone. There have been 8 interviews thus far and each person has taken their own, unique path.
You'll see that there's no magic process, course, location, etc. to building successful niche sites. It's a matter of getting started, making mistakes, and learning along the way.
The questions start off with where the Niche Creator lives, because it's always interesting to hear if there's a reason for their location. It goes to show that you can be anywhere in the world and create content.
Then the questions go into their backgrounds, niche sites, and strategies. Then it goes into my 3 favorite questions:
- What has been the biggest mistake you made?
- What has been the best decision you’ve made?
- What’s one thing that you felt accelerated your journey the most?
These 3 questions ask them to reflect on their journey and what has helped them get to where they are. Everyone has different answers to this. These answers are so inspirational to me, because they show that everyone's unique and we all take different paths.
But, there is a loose thread through the responses. It was summed up nicely by something Shawna Newman from Skipblast said...
Investing in Myself
She said that in regard to spending money on forums, courses, etc., but there's so much more in those 3 words.
Are wondering how all the gurus out there got to be so successful? They put in the work.
Invest time and energy in yourself and your niche sites. There are no shortcuts.
Ryan Kangail and Shawna Newman
This week's Niche Creator Q&A's come from popular bloggers Shawna Newman from Skipblast and Ryan Kangail from Rich Niches.
They have both built many niche sites and have great info to help other niche site builders. Check out their interviews:
The Insanely Simple SEO Strategy for 2022 (The Orchard Strategy)
Ahrefs discusses their Orchard Strategy to rank higher and get more organic search traffic:
- Plant trees (pages)
- Pick low-hanging fruits (first-page keyword rankings)
- Squeeze more juice out of them (optimize)
There's nothing really groundbreaking here with this SEO strategy. It's just a different name. But I do like their flowchart process on optimizing content and squeezing more juice out of them.
SEO Office Hours, February 25th, 2022
This is a summary of the most interesting questions and answers from the Google SEO Office Hours with John Mueller on February 25th, 2022. The topics covered in Onely's recap:
- Links report in Search Console
- Non-contextual footer links vs. site structure
- Is all hidden text against Google’s guidelines?
- The importance of image file names for site ranking
- Targeting two different pages with the same keyword
- Is there a good ratio for indexed vs. non-indexed pages?
- Search results within websites vs. ranking
- Page Experience update on desktop vs. ranking
- Non-indexed translated content
How to Create an Effective SEO Strategy
A good step-by-step overview guide to creating an SEO strategy by Semrush. It can act like as an SEO checklist:
- Benchmark Your Current SEO Performance
- Analyze Your Competitors' SEO Strategies
- Set Your Goals and KPIs
- Define Your Primary Keywords and Pillar Pages
- Find Long-Tail Keywords and Define Cluster Content
- Audit Your Site's Existing Content
- Build Out Your Topic Clusters
- Get Your On-Page SEO Right
- Find and Fix Technical SEO Issues
- Master Off-Page SEO
- Analyze and Refine Your Strategy
Topical Authority: myth or reality?
What if you cover all facets of a topic in one big article vs. 100 shorter articles? What’s the difference between Topical Authority and relevance? Does Google really see your site as “authority” or “expert” for a topic when you write a lot of content about it?
This is an interesting article from Kevin Indig at how real "Topical Authority is. He takes a look at the 3 most common arguments for measuring topical authority:
- Neural Matching and Neural Embeddings
- Backlinks and Internal links
He doesn't answer Yes or No directly, but does say that creating more content around the same topic is good for "building more Topical Authority."
I'm a big supporter of "Topical Authority" in that you should be creating as much content as you can around individual topics. That will help you rank well for those topics, even if you have fewer backlinks than others in your niche.
Ranking Rich Results (With Structured Data Examples)
This is a good look at ranking rich results in Google SERPs from JC Chouinard. FAQ Snippets are often the easiest to get in the SERPs, but there are so many other opportunities. JC gives overviews of how to leverage structured data with these rich results and more:
- FAQ Snippets
- Google’s Sitelinks
- Sitelink Search Box
- Answers (Q&A) Rich Results
- Job Postings Snippets
- Star Ratings
SEO Split Test Result: Would Adding “Updated 2022” in Title Increase Organic Clicks?
Fresh content is always a good thing to have. SplitSignal tested whether content freshness impacted rankings.
They tested by adding "updated" and the current year to the title page to see if that was enough for a "fresh content" signal for Google. In the end, the result:
After running the test for 21 days, we saw a 4.9% increase in organic clicks to the tested pages, with a confidence level of 99%.
Tools and Resources
7 Ways To Use Ahrefs Webmaster Tools
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools is their free tool for everyone to track how their sites are ranking. Olga Zarzeczna covers 7 things you can do with the free tool:
- Get a super useful SEO overview of your website
- Analyze the backlinks of your website
- Analyze the internal links of your website
- Analyze the organic keywords your website ranks for
- Discover the top 10 competing domains or pages
- Learn about your best performing content
- Crawl your website to learn about potential technical SEO issues
How to Write Content that Ranks #1 on Google
Maqtt Diggity goes through his step-by-step process on how to write optimized content that helps him rank #1 on Google.
- Choosing the right content
The 11 Best Landing Page Examples to Inspire You in 2022
These are 11 landing pages that are good to get homepage design ideas from. These examples are for products, ecommerce, events, services, etc. But they can easily be adapted for content sites.
There are many more examples out there. Searching for "homepage examples" will give you lots of options.
9 Linkable Assets That Work in 2022 (+ Examples)
Creating linkable assets can help you get more links to your niche sites. Linkable content is powerful because it gives you the ability to build links and use social shares and social media channels like Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest to promote your content to generate links.
- Case studies
- Original research and studies
- Tools, calculators & lead magnets
- List posts or listicles
- Trends and statistics
- Infographics, GIFographics & “Map-o-graphics”
- Awards & Rankings
- “Definitive” Guides & Tutorials
- Coined Terms
Link Reclamation: How to Find (+ Reclaim) Lost Backlinks
First article I've seen about Link Reclamation, but that doesn't mean it's anything new. It's the reason to track your backlinks. Sometimes a website is updated and somehow a link is lost, or it goes from dofollow to nofollow. You'll want to get that dofollow link back. This article covers:
- What is Link Reclamation?
- Link Reclamation Examples
- Benefits of Reclaiming Links
- Reclaiming Links vs Building New Ones
- How To Find Lost Backlinks (+ Regain Lost Link Value)
Death To Affiliate Marketing
It's a clickbait title, but it's some good insights into how to strategize with niche sites moving forward. Matt Giovanisci makes some good points in why he's changing his strategy to:
- Creating More of My Own Digital Products
- Replacing Affiliate Products with My Own
- Doubling Down on Email Marketing
- Mastering Paid Advertising
What he says at the end of the article echoes back to my message last week about failing. Affiliate marketing failed for him and he asked himself "what did we learn?" He took what he learned to make his own products, manage his own leads, and leverage paid advertising to grow.
One -vs- Multiple Niche Sites (Expert Opinions)
Keith Mint asks some well-known blogging and YouTuber friends this very important question:
Should beginners build just one website first, or should they build out multiple niche websites?
I'm on the side of beginners building just one website first. That will allow novices to focus on:
- Using WordPress
- Niche research
- Keyword research
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
Learn everything with one site first. Then as you have learned the more than the basics of all the above and making some money, start your 2nd site. Use everything you've learned, especially not repeating the mistakes you made on the 1st site to create a great foundation for your 2nd site.
Read his Niche Creator Q&A Interview to learn more about Keith.
Connecting Google Search Console to Google Data Studio
Google Search Console gives lots of insights into your website's Google Search performance. This post is the beginning of a series where they're going to show how to create data visualizations using Google Data Studio.
How to Find Expired Domains: Utilize The Power of Dropped Domains
There's been a lot of buzz about expired domains lately. But what exactly are they and how can you get your hands on one? How do you know you're getting your money's worth?
Authority Hackers has a video and blog post all about expired domains, including what you can do with expired domains:
- Build A Site On The Expired Domain
- Build A Private Blog Network
- Redirect Expired Domain Names To Your Site
They also get into how to find expired domains and where to buy them.
Best Way To Learn SEO
Nice collection of SEO resources by Mike Ginley. Many of the same links that were shared here before in the newsletter, but collected onto one page here.
If you want more of a structured course to learn SEO as it relates to affiliate sites, Matt Diggity's Affiliate Lab is the best course I've taken for that. You'll also get $200 off with that affiliate link.
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Have a great week taking your niche sites to another level!