What would you do with my website / ebook?

21 replies
I have a website in the pet niche (mostly dog articles) which I started in 2008. I was pretty active updating the content for a couple years, but I haven't touched it for a long time. Even with my lack of effort, the site still generates about 800 unique visitors each day. It earns about $50 / month in adsense clicks, about $20/month in clickbank commissions, about $15/month in cj.com commissions, and I also have my own 15-page ebook which sells for $7 on the site (I make $6.50 after PayPal's fee) and I sell 5-15 of those each month. All told, it's making about $150/month and I'm putting absolutely no effort into it.

My question is... If YOU owned this site and were able to invest some time into it, what would you do? It seems like the direct ebook sales are the best money maker / potential money maker. I've sold several hundred and have never had one refund request. Your thoughts?
#ebook #website
  • Profile picture of the author banx63
    Sounds like a nice little earner. I know this may sound a bit dull but have you/do you build a list of subscibers for this site?

    If not - this would be another great way of making money from it. For example if you give a "Dog Training Tips" guide away in order for their email address you could make them offers over and over again. Obviously I dont recommend you sell to them all the time - but if you are getting the visitors you are getting you will build a good size email list in no time.

    Another way to potentially monetize the site more would be with Amazon products. they pay 4% commission for any sales - and im sure they have tons of products in your niche.

    Just my thoughts - if you need any help or anything just PM me, though it sounds like you are very clued up with this sort of thing.

    Message me about joining our secret Viral Sites Clan on Facebook (not for newbies)
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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      Actually, no. I've never asked for email addresses on the site, even though it seems like a very basic method of garnering additional business. I guess the reason is... I initially wanted to push my own $7 ebook. The only email addresses I have are from the people who have already made the ebook purchase. I suppose I could use that as the foundation for an email campaign. I don't have any more of my own products to sell, but I'm sure clickbank has some things I could promote.

      I think I had some amazon ads on the site when I first launched it, but it never seemed to do well. Perhaps I'll give it another shot though.

      Thanks for your ideas John.
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  • Profile picture of the author gabibeowulf
    I would try to shift the visitors into newsletter subscribers. If you manage to grow the list by 100 subscribers out of the 800, by the end of the month you'll have 3k subscribers.

    Write a series of 6-7 emails providing content that builds trust and presells your ebook. If you manage to convert only 10% out of the $3k you're looking at 300sales * $7 = $2k. And I'm sure 10% it's conservative. And can you imagine what will happen if up the price from $7 to $17?

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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      Thanks Gabriel. I like the email series idea but the problem is, only about 5% of the 800 daily visitors are coming because of the specific book the ebook is in. The rest are coming for a wide array of other pet-related topics. Email marketing seems to be the way to go though.
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  • Profile picture of the author mgreener
    Hi Rob,

    Wanna sell it? (seriously)

    Gabriel is spot on, shift focus to creating subscribers and set up a healthy email series where you not only sell your ebook, but recommend useful products and give helpful tips and advice.
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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      @mgreener Everything is for sale. But it's been a nice little website for me over the years. Maybe I'm too emotionally attached to it though. It's always a good feeling when my iPhone PayPal app pops up a message saying "You've received $7".

      Sounds like I need to find a good product(s) to promote and start writing some emails. When I first started the site in '08, I did some email campaign research but never dedicated the time to make it work. I suppose I'll revisit the topic again.

      Thanks mgreener
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  • Profile picture of the author Thomas W
    sounds like your conversions are doing well. I would scale up the traffic building.. and start building a mailing list.

    Do a survey of what the people want, need and desire. Create a solution and sell it to them

    Established webmaster since 1998. Bought my first domain name for $70 and had to pay $1000 a month for hosting. It was the good life

    Skype: twool9
    Email me at thomasw9 ((((a)))) G mail

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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      Thanks Thomas. Good advice as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author FilipinoRockstar
    Hmm, if I had to work on that site, yeah, build a list would be one of my top priorities. Improve site graphics, open it up for guest blogging, sell ads, create a new ebook to complement the current ebook. Build more traffic by guest blogging in other dog blogs.

    Its good that you have emotional value to it, makes it easier to build a list from that
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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      Originally Posted by FilipinoRockstar View Post

      Hmm, if I had to work on that site, yeah, build a list would be one of my top priorities. Improve site graphics, open it up for guest blogging, sell ads, create a new ebook to complement the current ebook. Build more traffic by guest blogging in other dog blogs.

      Its good that you have emotional value to it, makes it easier to build a list from that
      Well, I had a forum on it about a year ago which is kinda/sorta/not really like a blog, but it did allow community discussion. It flopped. I left it up for about 6 months and I think I only
      had about 10 people register. And of those 10, one seemed like a crazy cat lady who scared me a little bit.

      I guess the only real emotional attachment I have is to the money it generates. The niche itself isn't really my thing. I own a few dogs and a cat. That's about it for me emotionally. So ya, definitely the money.

      Thanks for your advice.
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  • Profile picture of the author kayebee
    For my website I would try to promote it through social media, commenting on similar blogs, and pay for solo ads. I do agree with a few others that building a list is essential. I think building relationships with people that have similar sites is key. I had a small blog on wordpress a few months ago and I made 20 comments on similar blogs a day. The traffic to my blog skyrocketed. It was a big comparison when I wasn't personally active around the community.

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    • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
      Michael, Jeff, Kayebee, O0o0O.. Thanks for the advice. Posting YouTube videos is something I've never even considered for this site. I see lots of possibilities there. Good one. And the site could definitely use a refresh with some new quality content. I really like the idea of doing reviews on other pet products. I guess I'm a bit torn about whether to focus the site on a very specific niche (i.e. Pet Health Insurance or something) or keeping it generalized like it is now which will allow for a broader audience.

      Again, you guys are big into the list building idea. I'm looking for some good list-building methods as we speak (type?).

      The site is built on WordPress, and I do allow comments (moderated of course), so the site is somewhat discussion friendly. Maybe I could go a little further with that idea.

      And for the social networking stuff, like I said, I haven't touched the site in a while and when I made it, social media marketing wasn't really the buzz that it is now. It seems like that will go hand-in-hand with the list building ideas.

      All good advice, thanks y'all.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Ten
    If I were you, then I'd add more quality content. Maybe do YouTube videos to drive more traffic to your site.
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  • Profile picture of the author jeffonmission
    You definitely need a subscriber list. Think about your own buying habits - do you buy an ebook on the spot always? Or do you look for reviews and recommendations from someone you trust?

    That is the power of email marketing. You can build yourself up as the expert in this area, foster those relationships, and build a genuine business out of this site. With so many pet products to review, I'm sure you could easily make a lot more money from this site.
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  • Profile picture of the author O0o0O
    I would probably try to get the users more engaged. Although you are earning money, your site seems to be a bit too content and sales-driven. Maybe you can add some discussion widgets and bookmarks to get people to stick to your site more. Hope that helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizamanda
    I agree with all the above said, you need to build the list. It's just waste of opportunity if we can not monetize 800 unique visitor a day!

    If I were you, I will start to do below things to build the list:
    - Create a free ebook
    - Offering it on your website through opt-in box
    - Set up squeeze page, thank you page and download page
    - Set up autoresponder
    - Engage with the subscriber through email marketing
    - Sell my own ebooks and affiliate staffs to the subscribers.

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  • Profile picture of the author RobShambaugh
    Thanks Amanda. Looks like I have a lot of work to do.
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    • Profile picture of the author bizamanda
      Originally Posted by RobShambaugh View Post

      Thanks Amanda. Looks like I have a lot of work to do.
      Just do it gradually, one task at a time...you'll be surprise with the result by the time you finish it ...best of luck

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  • Profile picture of the author jkibbles
    If it weren't for the fact that I'm in the middle of writing content for a new site, writing content for a couple of other people, running a Cafepress store, and helping a friend get his window-cleaning company off the ground in the U.K., I'd be tempted to make an offer to take over the marketing in exchange for a percentage of the sales.

    Since I don't have time, I'm going to repeat what everyone else here has said, "build a list." Even if you don't immediately start marketing with the list, it's still a good idea to have it ready to go when you create or find the next big seller in your niche. People that have already purchased from you or shown enough interest to leave their info are a whole lot easier to sell to than cold visitors, after all.
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  • Profile picture of the author sksocial
    Subscribers! Get as many as you can hooked on a weekly mail list.
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyTorrents
    Collect emails, build a list. I also think you should write another E-Book since your one is doing so well. If people bought your last book and liked it chances are they will want another one.
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