[Live Case Study] Building an Authority Site

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  • SEO
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The Niche Rivalry Begins

Hey guys, just wanted to take a few minutes and let ya'll know about a case study myself and another affiliate marketer will be doing. We're planning to compete head to head in the same niche and reveal all of our methods. We've been ironing out the details for the last couple months and here's what we came up with:
  • The end goal is to build an authority site in a niche market. We’re of the opinion that low quality micro niche sites are coming to an end, maybe not this year or next year, but it doesn’t appear Google wants these types of sites around. So this case study will focus on quality and authority.
  • We’ll each be targeting the exact same seed keyword. While our methods of tackling this keyword will be different, we’re going to go after the same niche. Who knows where we’ll end up.
Rules of Engagement

We decided to keep the rules fairly simple. They are as follows:

1. No outsourcing content on the site. (Outsourcing is allowed for off site work only)
2. No paid traffic.

Simple, right?

The Challenge

The challenge has nothing to do with ranking or traffic. The challenge is to hit $10 per day. That’s it? Yes, that’s it. We’re not concerned with ranking number 1 for a specific keyword or trying to get certain traffic numbers. We want to build a quality site that can make decent money over a long period of time.

With that in mind this isn’t going to be a 30 or 60 day case study. We’re going to take it slow and build the sites our properly, so don’t be surprised if you check back over the next few months and we aren’t close to our goal. We’re in this for the long haul and you should be too.

We Want Your Input

We want to know if there is anything you’d like to see. Is there some part of building a niche site that you don’t understand or just want to learn more about?

This is your opportunity to offer your two cents and make this case study even better.

Updates

I'll do my best to stop in and update this thread, though I've got other sites to manage along with this case study, so most of my updates will be at Chasing Pace.

You can follow via the links in my signature.

And don't forget to let us know what you'd like to see, if you're interested in this case study!
#authority #building #case #live #site #study
  • Profile picture of the author Michael Ten
    It would be nice if you focused on the back-end stuff... plugins and design... but also... your methods for actually building... The Authority.

    Good idea... maybe post again once progress has been had or whenever your feel is most appropriate.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
      Originally Posted by Michael55555 View Post

      It would be nice if you focused on the back-end stuff... plugins and design... but also... your methods for actually building... The Authority.

      Good idea... maybe post again once progress has been had or whenever your feel is most appropriate.
      We'll definitely include all the backend stuff.

      Great, I just finished building an authority website too. I can see that many people with these "thin" sites are losing everything at some point.

      What backlinking method are you going to use? and at what pace?
      I'm not sure building a larger/authority site prevents you from ever "losing it," but I do think they're less likely to be affected by algo updates.

      There's 2 of us doing the case study and we're each going to use our own strategy, so I can only speak for me. I'll be building links very slow for the first few months and then pick it up a bit.

      Types of links will be a variety: social bookmarks, article directories, blog networks, guest posts, maybe a press release or 2, web 2.0, maybe some satellite sites down the road, and I'm going to push social interaction very hard (facebook mostly).
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkWW
    Great, I just finished building an authority website too. I can see that many people with these "thin" sites are losing everything at some point.

    What backlinking method are you going to use? and at what pace?
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    • Profile picture of the author DPM70
      Originally Posted by markw89 View Post

      Great, I just finished building an authority website too.
      But does one ever finish building an authority site? Seems like a bit of an oxymoron. Fresh relevant content seems to be the way to go. If you 'finish' and end up dead in the water, you'll be surpassed sooner or later.

      Good luck to the OP and will watch updates with interest.
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      I don't build in order to have clients. I have clients in order to build. - Ayn Rand
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  • Profile picture of the author Awesomo
    Hi Wesley, may I ask what form of monetization are you using? is it adsense?

    Nice case study, will be following this
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    • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
      Originally Posted by Awesomo View Post

      Hi Wesley, may I ask what form of monetization are you using? is it adsense?

      Nice case study, will be following this
      To be honest I'm not sure yet. I'll most likely start out with Amazon and other affiliates.

      I probably could have posted this in the general IM forum, but I enjoy this forum more and I'll be talking a lot about SEO.

      Focusing on dollars is good, but I don't think it would be very useful to members here just to measure dollars the site brings in without showing the origin of those dollars.
      I'll be doing my best to breakdown my earnings whether it be via adsense or other methods.
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  • Profile picture of the author twotoofs
    I'm interested and subscribed to this thread.
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  • Profile picture of the author sovereignn
    Very interesting, I'm curious to see what sorts of monetization methods you'll be using for an authority site. Most authority sites provide their own product
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  • Profile picture of the author msudawgs56
    Following along
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  • Profile picture of the author Majin
    Hmmm really interesting, i'm following this.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kauzmo
    Will you be posting info on another site / blog? The last "watch me" thread was deleted.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
      Originally Posted by Kauzmo View Post

      Will you be posting info on another site / blog? The last "watch me" thread was deleted.
      The most detailed updates will happen at Chasing Pace and The Lost Cycling Dude's Internet Journey.

      I will drop by here to update as well, but they won't be as detailed, and most of this case study won't be starting until the first week of January.
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      • Profile picture of the author lostcyclist
        I guess I should stop in here as well, and say "hey" since I will be on the "other end" of this competition.

        The whole reason I started "lostcyclist" was to help my friends and family follow along. I have to say that I love internet marketing. I'm only 8 months in, and it has pretty much repaid me every penny that I have invested into it.

        Not many other business schemes that are breaking even this early on.

        So I will do my darndest to make sure that I reveal all of the "backend" side of things, so if my mom wants to start doing this, she can hop over to my blog (or Wes') and be on her way.

        It's good to hear what you guys (and gals) are looking for. Sometimes I worry that some of that back-end stuff is will be rather boring -- but for someone who has never done it, well, its necessary.
        Signature

        Making $15k/Month with Amazon Affiliate Sites. Follow along or start your own escape: http://cubiclehoudini.com

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        • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
          UPDATE 12/29/11

          Well, we finally have our first update!

          We're glad ya'll think Niche Rivalry has the possibility to turn out well, hopefully we don't disappoint.

          I'm pretty excited about it all, especially after seeing Quin's first video, which absolutely blows mine away.

          Finding Seed Keywords and Brainstorming

          It's been an interesting past month. Originally when we started this case study we had a niche in mind and thought it would be smooth sailing from there on out. Well, as it turns out the niche we chose didn't work out. So, we spent most of the last week reviewing our keyword ideas and essentially starting over. More on that next week.

          I'm not going to list all the keyword ideas we had here (they are listed on our blogs), but essentially we came up with around 50 ideas and then narrowed it down to the following 3 (1 of which is our dud keyword):

          - tailgating
          - kitchen items
          - outdoor storage

          Note: These were just the keywords I chose, Quin also has his own list which we discuss. It's hard to show everything because a lot happens "behind the scenes".

          Obviously those keywords aren't very defined, so on January 1 we'll be sure to show you exactly what we did to refine them and what niche we ended up choosing.

          You can find videos and more detailed updates here:

          Lostcyclist: Niche Rivalry 001 - Brainstorming
          Chasing Pace: Niche Rivalry 002: Finding Seed Keywords the Easy Way

          Final Thoughts

          I did my best to give ya'll a detailed update, but it's difficult to update just via a post, especially after I've written it all out somewhere else. So if there is anything else you want to see or know about don't hesitate to ask, and we'll be back January 1 to let you know what niche we're going with!
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          • Profile picture of the author lostcyclist
            I think for our first attempts at videos we did quite decently.

            But then, I'm probably conceited.

            48 hours to the new year!
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            Making $15k/Month with Amazon Affiliate Sites. Follow along or start your own escape: http://cubiclehoudini.com

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  • Profile picture of the author spoiledkid01
    I was following a thread that was about adsense niche site and it just disappeared.
    Beware i dont want your thread to vanish that way. FOLLOWING ...
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    My Goal Is To Make 90 Grand A Year - At Least

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    • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
      Update 1/2/11
      This is going to be a short up date.

      A couple days ago we narrowed down the niche. On our initial selection I ended up choosing "tailgating", but unfortunately that didn't turn out to be a very wise choice. Mainly because it's seasonal, and the word "tailgating" has several meanings. So, we discussed things for a couple days and came up with "kitchen gadgets" as kind of an offshoot of "kitchen organization".

      So, that's it. Our theme for the Niche Rivalry will be "kitchen gadgets" or "helpful kitchen gadgets".

      We'll get into more detail in the next couple weeks. Keep in mind that this is the theme for the site. We're not necessarily trying to rank for "kitchen gadgets", but we will be building the site around those types of keywords.

      You can find more detailed updates on our blogs:

      Lostcyclist: The Lost Cycling Dude's Internet Journey » Blog Archive » Niche Rivalry 003 – The Launch!

      Chasing Pace: Niche Rivalry 003: Revealing the Niche
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Ten
        Originally Posted by Chasing Pace View Post

        Update 1/2/11
        This is going to be a short up date.

        A couple days ago we narrowed down the niche. On our initial selection I ended up choosing "tailgating", but unfortunately that didn't turn out to be a very wise choice. Mainly because it's seasonal, and the word "tailgating" has several meanings. So, we discussed things for a couple days and came up with "kitchen gadgets" as kind of an offshoot of "kitchen organization".

        So, that's it. Our theme for the Niche Rivalry will be "kitchen gadgets" or "helpful kitchen gadgets".

        We'll get into more detail in the next couple weeks. Keep in mind that this is the theme for the site. We're not necessarily trying to rank for "kitchen gadgets", but we will be building the site around those types of keywords.

        You can find more detailed updates on our blogs:

        Lostcyclist: The Lost Cycling Dude's Internet Journey » Blog Archive » Niche Rivalry 003 - The Launch!

        Chasing Pace: Niche Rivalry 003: Revealing the Niche
        Are you passionate about writing about kitchen gadgets?
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        • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
          Originally Posted by Michael55555 View Post

          Are you passionate about writing about kitchen gadgets?
          I've never really though about whether or not I'm passionate about kitchen gadgets. Though I can tell you it's gonna be a heck of an awesome site

          if you have enough patient to build authority website, then go for it ... I think I'd better go after something faster than that ... then flip the website. ... thx for the information, dude
          To each his own.
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          • Profile picture of the author Chasing Pace
            Update 1/9/12


            Sorry it's been about a week since my last update.


            I just posted Niche Rivalry 004: Site Setup.


            Here's the quick and dirty version


            Domain Registrar: internetbs.net


            Hosting: Hostgator


            Theme: Catalyst Theme


            Plugins: Askimet, All in One SEO, Google XML Sitemaps, Contact Form 7, Better WP Security, Secure WordPress, Login Lock, Advanced Recent Posts Widget, Get Social, WP Stats (from Jetpack), nRelate Related Content


            Sneak Preview: If you check out the post you'll find a screen shot of my new site
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            • Profile picture of the author TorremochaJ
              The trend now in building authority site is outsourcing the whole contents. Doing it yourself might burn out you or worst of all, the site will never be finished.
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  • Profile picture of the author lostcyclist
    Just wanted to poke in and say that I just revealed my domain name for our Niche Rivalry competition.

    Stop by lostcyclist.me and click on the "Niche Rivalry" tab

    Hope it helps somebody.
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    Making $15k/Month with Amazon Affiliate Sites. Follow along or start your own escape: http://cubiclehoudini.com

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  • Profile picture of the author Aha moment
    if you have enough patient to build authority website, then go for it ... I think I'd better go after something faster than that ... then flip the website. ... thx for the information, dude
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