Last Update March 27th, 2016 As many of you will know, I love WordPress. I use it on most of my affiliate sites which make me thousands of dollars per month and I also use it on my blogs, such as this one. I’m certainly not alone when it comes to utilising this CMS though — tens of millions of sites online are powered by the software.
For all the great things there are to be said about WordPress, though, out-of-the-box SEO certainly isn’t one of its strong points. As I use the software so much and make a lot of my income thanks to search engine traffic, I have come to learn what works best in terms of optimising your WordPress setup.
Utilising the power of the keyphrases that people use online has enabled me to make a full-time income since February 2009. I’ve spent the last two and a half years of my life doing nothing but using my own tactics, coupled with powerful resources, to analyse industries in order to get more website traffic. And, in-turn, make more money. This is known by many as Keyword Research.
It is this keyword research that has allowed me to get 981,000 unique organic search visitors to a 3 month old website, grow blogs faster than I ever thought was possible and – more than anything – allowed me to be free from a boss and the 9-5 grind.
In the late 1800’s, Kaiser Wilhelm wanted to get rid of a number of his associates in the German government. Since many of them were old, he decided to set the age of retirement to 65 and successfully forced them out of their positions. To this day, we still use the same retirement age around the world.
If you’re wondering what the point of sharing that was then let me say this: There was no point. My headline led you to read the post introduction, and my first paragraph was good enough to get you to read the second. Since I have your attention, let me tell you one more thing: You have to keep people hooked on your content if you want to get links. People don’t share things they don’t read.
As everyone knows, if you want to increase the amount of traffic you receive from search engines, you need to build backlinks to your websites. Each link is essentially a ‘vote’ which shows the likes of Google and Bing that you’re a trustworthy site. Because links are so crucial, marketers around the world have come up with hundreds of ways to build them.
Some of these tactics are easy to follow, while others require more obscure work, and some even cross the border when it comes to ethics. The backlink building tactic I want to talk about today is most commonly viewed as greyhat – not totally natural but not totally immoral either.
Would you believe there’s a top ranking site in a niche with over 300,000 searches per month which only has 4 pages and spams forums for links? In this study which both shocked and surprised me, I reveal this anomaly and many more. There is no industry where people make as many generalisations than they do with SEO. As with every other post on this site, I prefer to look at what is actually working and how to replicate it, rather than relying on guesswork.
This time I’ve looked into 5 sites, from 5 profitable affiliate industries, and analysed how they are ranking for their keyphrases. A lot of work went into this post, and I can tell you now there are no direct correlations, but I think you’ll learn a lot from what I’ve found.
Generally speaking, the more traffic you can get to a website the more money you can make. I like to focus on building search engine traffic to my sites because once you have rankings you can usually sustain them with little effort and the traffic they send is very targeted.
Over the last two years I focused on fairly small industries which I would build minisites for, which received their traffic from search engines, and then monetised them with affiliate offers. These days I’m spending my time focusing on much bigger (and more competitive markets) and having a lot of success.
I receive a lot of emails from people who ask whether, with all of the competition online, it’s still possible to enter a niche right now and make money. I won’t deny that it’s getting much, much harder in the affiliate marketing space (how I make money) but persistence, determination and creativity can take you anywhere.
Did you know that 20-25% of Google searches every single day are brand new? 1 in 4 search queries have never been typed in the history of the search engine – every single day. I knew of this statistic a few years ago but only recently did I try and leverage it. The result? In the third month after the site launched it received almost 1,000,000 unique visitors from Google.
As we enter the month of May which will see me turn 21 and lose what I consider my USP, it’s time for another monthly report which shows the ViperChill stats for April. While I have no goals for the stats here in any way, I find it interesting to track changes on a monthly basis and I hope you find it interesting too.
I did slack on the amount of posts written in April due to my hectic workload and a lot of things happening in my life that I couldn’t control, but that didn’t seem to slow down growth at all. Now let’s look at those traffic sources so you can all steal them (legally) from me, shall we?
Without a doubt, the most frequent post request I’ve had on this site is a post about link building. I rarely take requests, simply because people rarely know what they really want until you give it to them, but this time things are a little different.
First of all, I have been studying SEO day and night since I was 16 (almost 5 years ago) and I’ve ranked on the first page of Google for some of the most competitive keyphrases in the world. Therefore, I like to think I know quite a bit about the topic and can provide some insights in this space.
A few years ago, SEO was far more robotic than it is today. In fact, if you wanted to rank for some of the top keyphrases, you didn’t have to care much about being social in your niche or even standing out as an authority. You could simply buy directory links, sponsor blog posts, and even have WordPress themes developed which included a link to your site in the footer.
These days however, things are very different. The top results for most keyphrases are either a Wikipedia page, a site that is very focused around community, or a clear leader in an industry. There are exceptions, but links tend to go to social sites (even Wikipedia has social aspects) by the people who use them.