Every month I recap what has happened at SEOSherpas, from website traffic to domain sales to all posts in-between.
I do this because I want to have full transparency with my readers who are learning how to make a living online, as well as for my clients, so they know exactly who they are hiring (and why they should hire me).
2013 got off to a solid start here at SEOSherpas. Every January, I try and re-focus, analyze what happened the previous year and determine where I want to go next year.
My sites had plenty of ups and downs in 2012, but overall had more ups and more wins. To recap:
- I bought Bicycle Touring Guide, a site that consistently makes a few hundred per month during slow season and will likely make low 4 figures in the spring every month (here’s the process I used). Overall, I’d rate that as a success.
- I dove with both feet into Outdoor Equipment.com, only to see Google decimate the site just as it started rolling. However, there is an action plan I’ve finally developed and I’m going to execute on it this month to see if I can fix it. I’d rate that as a good learning experience
- I took my domaining business from breaking even into making a profit in the low $XX,XXX range (here’s a popular post I wrote on my top 10 lessons from domaining after 1 year). Success.
- My camping tent site took a further beating in the SERPs. Still makes a few hundred per month though. Time to write it off and move on.
- I started a new niche site in Snowboarding that is fairing decently and making a few hundred per month (here’s the process I used).
- My Glacier site grew slightly in income, even though I paid it zero attention.
What worked for me in 2012? Domaining, clearly. My one purchased site has had a very solid ROI.
And… Glacier. My biggest presence on the web. I’ve paid that site barely any attention over the last 2-2.5 years, yet it continues to make an annual passive income in the mid 5 figure range.
For 2013, I have a lot of big plans in the works, especially for my Glacier site. That includes transitioning it from SiteBuild It to WordPress, writing a lot more kick ass content, developing an info product to sell, and taking it to a whole new level with a strategy I won’t reveal yet.
Domain sales picked up for me in January, but not to a huge extent. Details to follow below…
What Happened in January at SEOSherpas
- We continued preparing for a baby, which includes going to a birth class once per week. We decided to take Birthing From Within. It’s a little granola-ey, but it’s only once a week for 4 weeks as opposed to other classes that can last 3 months (Yes. THREE months. An entire Trimester.).
- I experimented a lot with BuzzStream for selling domain names and marketing my sites. It has performed wonderfully.
- My websites grew in traffic at a solid rate.
Posts From January
Below is a round-up of all posts made in January:
- Finding the Best Keywords to Target Using Market Samurai
- Using 99Designs to CrowdSource a Logo
- Using SERPS to Track Keywords (And an Update on My Niche Site)
- My Facebook Contest Results
My Niche Site Income
I’m starting a new section in these monthly reports where I’ll be breaking down the income from any niche sites I’ve documented the development of on SEOSherpas.
Please note: I don’t optimize my AdSense ads as much as possible. I put them in the sidebar to promote a good user experience. AdSense earnings would likely be 4-5x their amount if placed in the optimal position (top of content, blending in), but I care more about my users and social sharing than an extra 50 bucks via AdSense.
- Avantlink – $0.00
- AdSense – $0.57
- Amazon – $0.00
- Total – $0.57
- Avantlink – $62.49
- AdSense – $17.20
- Amazon – $0.00
- Total – $79.69
- Avantlink – $167.39
- AdSense – $29.82
- Amazon – $17.77
- Total – $214.98
Traffic Level Breakdown
Below is the traffic breakdown for a number of my websites, including the percentage increase. This is a screenshot directly from Google Analytics taken on February 1st.
A few notes on the traffic levels:
- Bicycle Touring Guide – A solid 29.77% increase in traffic. That’s after an increase of 34.42% in December. Combined, that’s a growth of over 60% in 2 months. AWESOME. It still isn’t pulling in the income I’d like, but that should start changing soon.
- Outdoor Equipment – Told you to expect a huge drop off this month. 57.17% decline. Hopefully I can move things in the right direction again as I execute on my new strategy.
- AllBestBinoculars - Between November and December, Binoculars saw a 63% increase in traffic. Those are the peak months for the site. As you can see, it declines sharply from its peak. Drop off of 27.01%.
- AllArtCareers – YAWN. 24.78% increase. Doing nothing with the site and it’s doing nothing for me.
- Camping Tent Reviews – A little bump of 10.18%.
- Criminology Degree – Decrease of 20.25%. See Art Careers.
- Fulfilled Homemaking – An increase of 4.12%. Let’s re-echo the last few months: ‘We really need to figure out a strategy for this site and execute on it. It’s very well received.’
- Glacier – After a stagnant December, it’s nice to see Glacier get a 17.37% boost in January. February we will see it decline some, but it should only be onward and upward from there.
- SEOSherpas – An increase of 46.37%. That’s on top of an increase of 135.62% in December. THANK YOU for your support.
- Snowboarding – An increase of 97.97%. Nice.
January was a decent month for me. I’ve set my goals to $3,000 in gross sales per month for domaining this year. That will lead me to more than double my gross revenue from 2012.
The beginning of January was very slow. In fact, the 2 domains I sold in January both came in the last week. But February is off to a nice start as I sold a domain on February 1st.
I also had a lot of great inquiries via DomainNameSales this past month. Interestingly, one for OutdoorEquipment (not via DNS), which I thought was going to be a solid sale but never came near my asking price.
OK. Here are the details:
- 3 Word, GEO.com (AdjectiveAdjectiveNoun.com) – Bought for $292 in November 2012 (I overpaid), sold for $1,350.
- 4 Word, GEO.com (AdjectiveAdjectiveNounNoun.com) – Bought for $69 in December 2012, sold for $750 about a month later.
I used BuzzStream to streamline my sales and marketing process. Will detail that later this month.
A little shy of my goal, but I’ll take it.
January Round Up
January was a good month here at SEOSherpas and a nice start to the New Year.
My number one goal for January was to build out social media accounts for Binocs and Bikes and begin understanding how to use Pinterest for traffic generation. I succeeded on the social media accounts, but not on Pinterest.
Now, my number one goals for February – Figure out Pinterest, execute on my OutdoorEquipment fix strategy, write a few awesome posts on my newest tool, BuzzStream, and develop my new niche site, BrilliantBaby.com. A lot to get done in a condensed month.
What’s your biggest goal for February? And did you meet your January goal? Share in the comments!