22 months down the line... and only made $1300. Time to pack it in?

46 replies
Hey guys!

I've finally made the plunge of joining the Warrior Forum after 2 years of lurking around. I hope that some of you with more experience and success can weigh in on my issue

So, let me tell you about my site.

I started it in February 2011. I have a skin condition called psoriasis that I've dealt with for a decade, and thought I could share my experience (and make some money doing so.)

At the time, I was a complete newbie, following the money trail of a guide I found online: I did a bit of keyword research, wrote articles, syndicated them on places such as EzineArticles.com and Twitted my blog updates.

Throughout it all, I always sought to give my readers well written and thoroughly researched posts, not just typical run-off-the-mill, spun copy.

However, I'm starting to feel like a hamster. Even with the work I'm doing, I'm still pretty much in the same spot.

In the time-span of 22 months, I've had around 80,000 visitors and made roughly $1,300. $800 came from a ClickBank product, $300 from Paypal and around $200 from Amazon.

There was a point where I was getting 400 visitors a day and made close to $150 for 4 months in a row, but lo and behold, my site bombed a week later with the Panda update. I'm still not sure why as I don't do anything blackhat.

My question is, should I pack it in and call it a day? I have a pretty demanding day job and its exhausting to keep shooting in the dark without hitting anything.

I'm not really sure if I'm making some serious mistakes, if I'm in the wrong niche, (or both :confused, so some sobering opinions from others would help out.

Thanks again
#$1300 #line #made #months #pack #time
  • Profile picture of the author PerformanceMan
    I don't think you should quit. 80,000 visitors is really good! You probably just have to change things up concerning monetization. You have the basics down, just make adjustments.
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  • Profile picture of the author James Raybould
    I agree, your visitor count is great. Have you thought about including some videos and asking people to comment on their issues. Encourages interaction and may give you a few pointers!!

    Don't give up, most people don't make $1!!
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  • Profile picture of the author TomYevsikov
    Don't quit, you've reached a level that many others didn't.

    keep monetizing, keep driving traffic and do markeyt research to see if it is really profitable...

    Also, get yourself a mentor and show him your business, he'll know what to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author masterjani
    Actually monetization is the problem for you, Test with different ad positions and different products with popups as well.

    Also, Now you have idea to create a site and get some visitors, why not go and write more product reviews and make more money from that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Riffle
    With certain niches, there's only so much you can say. For example, how much can one really write about aquarium gravel before it gets repretitive?

    Maybe it's time to start a new niche? Only post on your current site when you have something new and fresh to say.

    $1300 probably puts you in the top 20% of internet marketers, by the way.
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  • Profile picture of the author Arunabh Singh
    Welcome!

    What a day you picked to join - 12-12-2012
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  • Profile picture of the author Dustin Blevins
    I wouldn't say that you are having bad results with that one site. It's now time to take your knowledge and scale out. Make more sites. If you can have multiple sites doing this you can eventually make a living online.
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  • Profile picture of the author WarrenPeterson
    What are you trying to sell on your site? I saw articles, read them, and then left. What problem are you solving for your visitors, and what are you doing to drive them towards purchase? Think about which keywords or phrases are people using to get to your site, and make sure what you are selling matched the expectations of those search terms.

    On a high level, when I first look at your site, it looks like an informational site with some links on the side and elsewhere. I can read and learn and leave, so to speak, without any call to action to buy anything. So before you pack it in and move on, consider a redesign that is geared towards sales and not information, and develop that new site for a while.
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  • Profile picture of the author Martin Lee Jr
    I may have missed it but if you don't have one, put an opt -inform on your site, build a relationship with your list, and you should make more sales in the long run.
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  • Profile picture of the author Troy_Phillips
    Just think what a business you would have had if you would have tried to capture those 80,000. The condition doesn't usually go away if I understand it right. Trust marketing could have you reminiscing about the job you used to work at.
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  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    As long as you have a means of support, why stop? $1,300 ahead of where you were is not a waste. If you like what you are doing, a hobby bringing in money isn't a bad thing at all. Keep at it and maybe you'll just hit that one little thing that will put you over the edge. Quit, and you get...........nothing.

    Oh - and welcome to the Warrior forum............where some of today's top marketers spent close to a decade to get it right.
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  • Profile picture of the author seriousjake
    Just wondering, have you tried building a list yet?
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  • Profile picture of the author J Bold
    You need to "rinse and repeat" as they say.

    You have a formula, perhaps not the best conversion rate, but it's something. Use this formula to build a new site.

    Want my advice? You should be building a list with this site as well. And do everything the same with your new site as you did with this one, except build a list with it as well. And then have an autoresponder sequence of 30-60 days set up from the get-go.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve B
    Topbanana:

    You've paid your dues, gotten a good foundation, learned alot, and now you can move forward. The road from nothing to wealth is not a smooth straight uphill climb. You move up, move down sometimes, and occasionally go sideways on a plateau. Don't give in yet when you're on a plateau. Figure out how to jump to the next level.

    If I were in your shoes, I would focus on list building, conversions, and creating a niche product that your customers could benefit from.

    Steve
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    • Profile picture of the author cs.marketer
      First of all let me say well done in getting to where you are now.

      I had a quick glance at your site. One thing that stands out to me is your building a list. Have you ever thought about building a list of email subscribers? At least then people won't be coming to your site and leaving to never be seen again.

      Chris
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    • Profile picture of the author PayPower
      You have what it takes! All you now need is an irresistible offer and something for free to get the optins.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adrianne_
    I agree with the monetizing tip. I looked at your site and did not see google adsense. Since you already have a good visitor base, try adsense to see if you can pull in some extra cash.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Ten
    I've been trying to earn money online for over 72 months and have made less than you. Do not give up unless you are ready and willing to dramatically lower your chances of success.
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  • Profile picture of the author salegurus
    I'm going to give my stock standard answer to these "Should i give up" questions:
    Yip Pack It In and Call It A Day....

    Unless...

    You only started this thread hoping for a pick me up from the Don't Give Up brigade?
    Truth is you've probably made more money than a good portion of members so maybe all you need is to tweak a few things...
    PS. I'm not here to talk anyone into or out of anything, the final decision is always yours...
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  • Profile picture of the author jackcarr
    From what I have learnt from my short time here,

    you are never going to make big bucks from just a single site, you need to have multiple sites to stack the odds in your favor.

    $1300 is a good amount, you just need to tweek the site. Tell people why they NEED to buy the product, maybe have a static front page with a testimonial to the clickbank product, tell them you used it and it solved your problems. You can still run the blog, just not on the front page.

    It could have something to do with the keywords you are targeting too. If you are going after keywords like "what is psoriasis" you are targeting people that want information, not products. Target keywords like "psoriasis treatment" or "how to get rid of psoriasis"

    Best of luck with your venture
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  • Profile picture of the author DeanJames
    @topbanana - The problem is your income has been largely reliant on traffic from Google, so naturally when or if that drops off, your income falls due to the slump in traffic. The solution to this is to drive additional traffic to your site that doesn't come from the search engines and also LEVERAGE the search engine traffic that your site does get so you can reach your target audience without being at the complete and utter mercy of Google for the majority of your traffic and income.

    You shouldn't quit. Celebrate your success to date and get to work. Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author dvduval
    I know you worked hard, but at I do this google search (intext:plaqueplucker.com), I can see there is unnatural linking. What frustrates me is you didn't have to go about it this way. You could have gotten fewer links, but from better sites and seen your rankings continue to grow.

    I don't know if you have any other sites, but it wouldn't hurt to have at least a couple of irons in the fire so to speak. The google penalty surely go away over time, but possibly not to the extent you would like to see.

    You have to build a site people love, and you just can't go wrong. It takes time, but it is so worth it. You can have an income for years and years.
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  • Profile picture of the author mrelk159
    No do not quit you will regret it if you do. The wright brothers failed many times when they were trying to create the first flying machine. Everyone laughed and called them crazy, if they quit and stopped working on the flying machine we will not have airplanes today! DO NOT QUIT!
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  • Profile picture of the author mknowles2262
    congrats on your success. Don't give up...even if you take another 5 years to really make good money it will be worth it. Wishing you the best of luck
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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    If you're doing this part-time, that's a decent income. Not great but decent depending on how much time you put in. The next step is to figure out what you're doing right and scale it up.
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  • Profile picture of the author Simiv68
    I would suggest to stick it out and to work on your traffic, (SEO, PPC, Sola ads), build a list, and keep plugging along.
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  • Profile picture of the author run
    What a joke that you want to leave your hobbies; I predict that you are working all time all day on that one site because it is your area of knowledge and experience. Keep up, make more optimization to the site. As mentioned above, there are many more thing you need to check and make more attraction and gain back your $$$.

    You're using a whole article in front page that will cause the visitor to tired scrolling up and down. In addition, you'll lost more page views, and some useful points on your blog will be hidden.
    You prevent all the chance that users could be interact with your blog and you, the owner.
    Comment closed and no opt-in form, and no contact.
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    I just wanna tell you that most of the links in the signature are trash and/or a trap to make you pay!
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  • Profile picture of the author jamesgan
    Continue to share what you love and love what you share,
    The money will come....
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  • 22 months isn't that long for a lot of people. I've known people who are still in the game for 4 years and haven't made a dime, but they still keep their head in the game and just don't let go.

    The good thing is, they just keep learning and adapting and still taking massive action. I have more respect for the perseverance of such people more so than the people who just get lucky on their first rodeo.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bai_Mike
      Here's my opinion and I sure do hope that you take it.

      - List building
      Start a newsletter. Offer a freebie as incenitive to get in. Offer health promotions in the newsletter. Cross promote it with other product in the health industry.

      - Outsourcing
      It is a business like anything else, if you feel like it's shooting in the dark, you need people who are specialized. Outsource link building and article writing. Also outsource forum marketing.

      - Start a PPC campaign
      After you start the newsletter, promote it with PPC, and start collecting leads

      - Learning
      Sign up for a few good WSO and sign up to their newsletters or visit their blogs where they teach about internet marketing. Be picky about it. There is only so little that a forum posting can do to help you, experienced mentors are the way to go.
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  • Profile picture of the author celente
    OMG! you just answered your own question.

    If you can make $1 online there is no reason you cannot make $3 or $10 or $100000 online.

    Just upscale and outsource, you know what works, so do more of it. If it is upscalable then do that. So like I said, you just answered yourself. THink about it for a minute.
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    • Profile picture of the author topbanana
      Wow - so many replies! Thanks everyone. I've just gotten into work, so I've had a quick read, but will go over the suggestions more carefully this evening.

      Sorry, I didn't really intend to go hunting for pick-me-ups, although I do appreciate them! My question was more like - how do you know when a niche is dead and it's time to move on? This site is my first and only site, so I was beginning to think that I was a bit too irrationally attached.

      However, I've seen some interesting comments that I need to look into regarding monetization. I do not think I've marketed the CB products as aggressively on-site as many people suggest... and that could definitely improve.

      I did have an opt-in form at one point, using a WP plugin, and managed to capture around 100 leads, but realized that its autoresponder function wasn't working. I need to work on implementing it again.

      But, one thing, I never knew that the little steps that I've made in nearly 2 years would be in the top 20%. I guess that it's easy to lose sight of the big picture when you don't make progress at the pace that you see some others going.

      One question - how long did it take for you to start making a constant income? Let's say, around $200 a month?

      Anyways, thanks for the very warm and positive comments. Seems like I made a great choice joining!
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  • Profile picture of the author YasirYar
    You should never quit, not now - I mean, considering the traffic and visitors you are getting, it's not bad at all. There are people who have websites set up for years and not a single sale, at least with your website you made a decent $1,300 in sales, which is not bad at all! You just have to make some tweaks to improve it so you can get more sales and leads.
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  • Profile picture of the author KevinDahlberg
    Wanna trade? I could go for $1300 in my first 22 months (I'm on month 18 right now. Just hit 20 bucks.)

    That's almost 60 bucks a month. I'd be doing backflips if I made 60 bucks last month.

    Keep it up. You never know when that 1300 is going to grow a few more zeros behind it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dustin Lyle
    IMO you should add some video. Keep the clips short and simple. These days people have severe ADD thanks to the internet. The fact that the page scrolls down for a ways and is all text makes me want to hit the back button and re-google my search for a solution.

    Also, had there been upon my visit, an offer for a free information packet if I "just Enter my e-mail below", then you would have had me on your list of qualified solution seekers.

    Mind you, this is all my opinion as I am in no way an expert. If I was you, aside from the things I said, I would use the same theme and just replicate it with similar but different niches. The thing is, you can cross use your content and save a boat load of time. Like having a skincare site as well as a psoriasis site and use your psoriasis articles on your skincare site. With this niche especially, you'll find that people just looking into skincare, will be more apt to purchasing products as a preventative measure. Also you might have something to gain by cross linking your sites' urls within the content, as well as making yourself somewhat of a "guru". Building a rapport by way of knowledge demonstration surely will increase buyers confidence.



    Good luck man!
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  • Profile picture of the author pawlu68
    Definitely dont give up ... find someone who can help you monetise your traffic ... sometimes a little bit of tweaking does the trick.
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  • Profile picture of the author thebitbotdotcom
    You stated that your site tanked because of Panda, so obviously you need to get it back.

    Really, the only way to Google-proof you site is to get an autoresponder and post an optin form in your side bar and tempt signups with something like a "Top Three Natural Psoriasis Remedies" guide or something like that. You can even take a few posts from your site and create a PDF from them. They'll never know. I create optin freebies from old posts all the time.

    If you feel burned out, step away from it and catch your breath.

    Additionally, if you are sick of writing articles, you could always solicit guest posts on the subject at myblogguest.com.

    Bloggers will write unique content for you if you allow a link to their site in the article.

    Many submissions will be poor quality, but you will get some gems too.

    My experience has been to:

    1) Provide consistent unique content on the subject.
    2) Build a list of targeted prospects.
    3) Send them information they can use on a regular basis.
    4) When new products come out that may help them, bump them with an email and tell them about it. Add your affiliate link of course.

    This is an endurance race and I have stood exactly where you are standing. From what I have learned, build a business online can take years and sustain several set backs unless you have big $$$ to invest in traffic.
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  • Profile picture of the author akowally
    Welcome to Warrior Forum,

    $1300 is not bad. Your traffic is really good though therefore there's more you can do about it.

    I recommend you buy Mark Ling's Affiloblueprint 3 which has great information on how you can monetize your website. More about it in the article below:

    Affilorama Review - Affiliate Marketing Made Easy - FreelancerKenya

    I have been in the industry for way shorter time than you, get less traffic but have made much more through the skills I learnt in this awesome course. In IM lots of people will give you fake information and stats. The best way to take yourself to the top is to buy from those who have made it and implement.

    For example, I bought Affiloblueprint at it's launch offer prize of $77. When I was halfway, I landed a $900 SEO deal using the thorough SEO lessons that Mark gives. I then started earning $25-50 a week through affiliate sales from my website.

    All the best.
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  • Profile picture of the author Opeleroy
    Checked out your site. It's clean, but there is one glaring thing missing... No newsletter.

    I stumbled along for about the same amount of time before I read the writing on the wall (a.k.a. the forum here) and set-up a newsletter on my sites. Build a relationship with your readers, and you will have a much, much easier time selling to them. Can't stress the importance of building a list enough.

    Additionally, once you have your auto-responder messages you can focus on generating traffic to your opt-in page...

    Panda and Penguin kicked my butt this year as well. Made me realize that depending on the search engines was too risky if I wanted to make this a real business. I have been guest posting and syndicating articles since then. Traffic converts far better in my own, completely un-scientific testing. A lot better than SEO traffic in particular.

    In short: Set up newsletter. Write articles on high-traffic relevant websites and blogs. Direct traffic to your newsletter. Provide content to subscribers and promote products (maybe even your own one day?).

    Simple as that.
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    Boom.

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  • Profile picture of the author Surminga
    The fact you are making money and getting traffic is a plus and not many people get this - you need to alter your strategy to make better use of your visitors.
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  • Profile picture of the author shaunfm
    You have missed the number 1 fundamental rule!No opt-in form.Add 1 and offer a free product/report,grow your list,offer real value and monetize.
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  • Profile picture of the author topbanana
    Hey guys, thanks again for all of the good-natured responses. Will reply back when I get home.
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