Amazon Review Sites: how to stay on page 1?

by byau
89 replies
  • SEO
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Hi all,
So my (young) IM career currently is dedicated to Amazon review sites. My first campaign (that's what I call them) was 11 sites. I'm in the process of tweaking those while building my campaign 2 (8 sites)

Anyway, for my campaign1, quite a few of them did well (by well I mean two to three months of $80 to $110 each).

The others are doing fairly well. However I am noticing a trend.

Each site that does fairly well is because it gets on to page 1 of its intended keyword (all sites are exact match for a keyword). It stays there awhile, then it gets dropped off.

So my question is: what's the best strategy for these sites to stay on page 1? Why did they drop off?

I have heard that once on page 1, the site goes under a manual review and from there possibly might get dropped. So I'm guessing it's possible my content was not considered valuable? Either that or the sites that are on page 1 legitimately booted me off with off-page SEO or better content?

Anyway, all sites have handwritten review by me which I actually consider to be pretty good quality.

Then I experimented with the bestseller lists (as outlined in Jamie "GoGetta's Amazon Mindset WSO) and had that as my home page.

Then I wrote up some mini buyer guides (Tips on buying XXX) and had that as my home page

Then I also wrote up more detailed buyer guides but have not made those my home page yet but a separate page (linked from home page)

Anyway, so my question is what do you guys think? Any of these strategies sound feasible? Or do I just continue slowly and surely doing my off-page SEO?

Or ... any other ideas?

Thanks!!
#amazon #page #review #sites #stay
  • Profile picture of the author Hasanabd
    Bro , as i read it seems that your work was complete and awesome especially writing your own high quality content , maybe the problem is in not updating the website regularly ? Or providing backlinks ? Or the competitors on the same niche as long as authority websites are developing ?
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Thanks Hasanabd!

    As far as updating the content enough: I keep hearing conflicting ideas from the "gurus". Some of them say the way to keep it on page 1: update often. Some say they have sites that they never need to update (I'm assuming that just means keep building backlinks).

    To be honest I was hoping I wouldn't have to update the content anymore - maybe once every few months when I find a new product to review but I was hoping 8-10 reviews would be fine, plus maybe an article or two that is of high interest to whomever is browsing my site such as the buying guides a.k.a. "how to buy" and also in the future a "why you should buy".

    For off-page SEO I am building backlinks regularly - I usually use fiverr though I am experimenting with other services. I don't have much strategy except to do it consistently every month and try something different every month because it seems the one consistent backlink strategy in these backlinking guides is to get a variety of backlinks over time. Each month I use as my "meat and potatoes" 3waylinks, Directorymaximizer, socialmaximizer. Then I get a fiverr gig (sometimes two) and vary between forum profile, article marketing, blogroll, contextual blog post, senukex campaign, etc..etc.

    I'm assuming as long as I do this consistently it will be good? Or is there specific off-page-seo I should follow instead of my "meat and potatoes + random fiverr" ?

    Anyway, I have a feeling it is either everyone else kicking my butt OR something wrong with my site since each site I have had reach page 1 has stayed there for some time and then fallen off. A few sites it stays there two or more months, sometimes only a few weeks. I think this happened for 7 of my 11 sites in campaign 1.

    I have not started any off-page SEO for campaign 2 yet (just press release) and they are getting some sales already (two months in) and this is when I was planning to start the off-page SEO and tweaking of any content - so I do have more sites to experiment with now

    If it helps, here are two of my sites that both did really well, had $100+ months, and now the traffic has disappeared

    Best Desktop Speakers Bestsellers | Best Desktop Speakers (this is now maintaining position on page 2)
    Bestselling Hiking Backpacks | Hiking Backpack Reviews (this is nowhere to be found now, but was on page 1 for a quite awhile also)

    Both sites this month are going to be under $20 which will not cover the cost of maintaining the site

    Any thoughts would be appreciated!

    And if anyone has any questions for me I'd be happy to answer - I'm still learning a lot myself (obviously) but would be happy to help.
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    You can do one of two things if you want to stay on page one longer:

    1. Target low competition products so Google has no choice but to leave you on page one longer
    2. Maintain your site by updating the content regularly

    For best results, do both.
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Thanks -
      I actually have not targeted products specifically. I checked out the posts in your .sig, looks like you're quite the expert. Will definitely need to come back and read those links tonight when I have more time.

      Okay so #2 vote for updating content regularly. Specifically for an amazon review site, do you have a recommendation? Update it with more reviews? Or useful articles? And what is regularly? I've seen people say like four times a week. Would two times a month work as long as it continues to be "original" quality content?

      Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

      You can do one of two things if you want to stay on page one longer:

      1. Target low competition products so Google has no choice but to leave you on page one longer
      2. Maintain your site by updating the content regularly

      For best results, do both.
      Signature
      Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
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      • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
        Originally Posted by byau View Post

        Okay so #2 vote for updating content regularly. Specifically for an amazon review site, do you have a recommendation? Update it with more reviews? Or useful articles? And what is regularly? I've seen people say like four times a week. Would two times a month work as long as it continues to be "original" quality content?
        The more frequent, the better. However, monthly should suffice. You could add content discussing customer reviews that have been written since the last time you posted or you could add comparisons to other products periodically.
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        • Profile picture of the author byau
          Thanks - still stumbling forward (in fact this is my first thread I've started). I appreciate the tips so far.

          When you add this content, do you create a new category for it and if so what? Seems like I could just add a category called "Discussion" or even "Blog" where I could just post short 50 to 200 word posts discussing either current products I've reviewed (and link to those reviews) or maybe just something in the industry that has happened (using google news and then linking to the google news item) or something of that nature?

          Do you happen to have an example somewhere you could post or PM me?

          You guys ROCK! Thanks for the help so far!
          Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

          The more frequent, the better. However, monthly should suffice. You could add content discussing customer reviews that have been written since the last time you posted or you could add comparisons to other products periodically.
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          Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
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          • Profile picture of the author lukedidit
            Originally Posted by byau View Post

            When you add this content, do you create a new category for it and if so what? Seems like I could just add a category called "Discussion" or even "Blog" where I could just post short 50 to 200 word posts discussing either current products I've reviewed (and link to those reviews) or maybe just something in the industry that has happened (using google news and then linking to the google news item) or something of that nature? !
            That's exactly what I have done for my niche sites. Sometimes there is only so much you can write on certain subjects, so I have a blog which is not obvious to find. In that blog I can be a lot more widely based on what I put there, i can go off topic.
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            • Profile picture of the author Zarathushtra
              If I were in your circumstances - and I will be very soon, because I'm building some niche website, monetized through Amazon, I will add fresh content at least one article per month (better if two).

              I don't know exactly how you are doing backlinking, but I can give a couple of tips.
              -Constancy is the key here, it is better to build 20 links every day than 200 links one time only.
              -With Penguin 1.1, be sure to avoid black-hat SEO strategies.
              -Build highly contextual backlinks. If they aren't niche related, their value is close to zero.
              -Try to vary the keywords you target, so that the ranking will be more natural.

              Hope it helps!
              Attilio.
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              • Profile picture of the author ochaim
                Thanks so much for sharing your sites. I'm still figuring out a way to build review sites that work (sell).

                For your first campaign, was there a threshold for exact monthly searches. Did that correlate closely to how well the sites did? I've seen arguments for both low and higher searches (300 vs 1500 and up).

                Another way to update your site, there's forum member, name is something like "sovereign", he had a great post targetting just released products using longtail keywords, I tried finding it for you but its a pain on my phone. If there isn't anything really new, you can certainly target model names and numbers which he also suggests.

                Owen
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          • Profile picture of the author JSProjects
            Originally Posted by byau View Post

            Thanks - still stumbling forward (in fact this is my first thread I've started). I appreciate the tips so far.

            When you add this content, do you create a new category for it and if so what? Seems like I could just add a category called "Discussion" or even "Blog" where I could just post short 50 to 200 word posts discussing either current products I've reviewed (and link to those reviews) or maybe just something in the industry that has happened (using google news and then linking to the google news item) or something of that nature?

            Do you happen to have an example somewhere you could post or PM me?

            You guys ROCK! Thanks for the help so far!
            That seems like a pretty good idea, actually.

            Other than that, it can be anything. Just make sure you're adding new things from time to time. Just to show that it's not a dead site.
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            • Profile picture of the author byau
              Thanks - as I thought about it more I figure the best category would be "News" Or "Latest News" - is there a way to get a category listed in the top menu in Wordpress along with the Pages?

              Originally Posted by JSProjects View Post

              That seems like a pretty good idea, actually.

              Other than that, it can be anything. Just make sure you're adding new things from time to time. Just to show that it's not a dead site.
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              Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
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          • Profile picture of the author marcp
            Originally Posted by byau View Post

            Thanks - still stumbling forward (in fact this is my first thread I've started). I appreciate the tips so far.

            When you add this content, do you create a new category for it and if so what? Seems like I could just add a category called "Discussion" or even "Blog" where I could just post short 50 to 200 word posts discussing either current products I've reviewed (and link to those reviews) or maybe just something in the industry that has happened (using google news and then linking to the google news item) or something of that nature?

            Do you happen to have an example somewhere you could post or PM me?

            You guys ROCK! Thanks for the help so far!
            Add fresh unique content consistently, once your site shows stability at least once a month. The type content doesn't matter whether it be a review or info post.
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  • Profile picture of the author JSProjects
    1. Go after lower competition phrases.

    2. Add content on a semi-frequent basis. (Every few weeks if you can. Even if it's just an article or two.)

    3. Backlinks. Keep backlinking the site, your articles, etc. If you're going after low competition phrases it's not going to take much.
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Thanks everyone , I really appreciate the tips!!

    I'm glad to hear that once or twice a month seems sufficient since it seems that most of the books/wso/"guru" posts say it's either three or four times a week or never, (though that might just be a marketing ploy to sell something that will autopost three or four times a week or a system that lets you set it and forget it a.k.a. never work on it again). That definitely is much more palatable since I still enjoy writing all the content.

    A lot of what you guys talk about for off-page SEO seems to be what I've read for backlinking strategies to get to Page #1. So are you saying it's the same whether you are trying to get Page #1 or maintain Page # 1?

    To Owen: My niche research is using Microniche Finder and finding the "greens". Searches per month vary between 270 and 1000, most of them being around 300 to 500. but I was always of the mindset that by writing "naturally" I would end up getting some searches with related keywords and product keywords. I did make mental notes of related keywords searches which came up with both Microniche Finder and also searching those phrases in Google Keyword tool. When I went to Amazon and found the products I would be writing reviews for I also searched those in Google Keyword tool and wrote those down just to see what the most common searched phrases are and I used those as my categories.

    I haven't done any specific targeting towards products yet, just the general targeting that I list above. (thanks to the tips in this thread about doing specific targeting towards product names.. appreciate that)

    If you do find that post, please please do share!! Thanks!

    To ZaraThushtra
    To respond to those that didn't know how I did backlink building, I am following Matt Rhodes Pathetic Money Maker system (which is what I base my keyword research on) and his system just has putting the site up followed by press release. Then to build backlinks after it had gained some traction just from the additional content. So I pretty much do that where I build the site, I put up four reviews in the first week, then the press release, then additional reviews for the rest of the two months. After two to three months I started my backlink building.

    For backlink building, I don't know if I have the best strategy or even one that works. I just noticed that diversity and consistency is the main common thread.

    My "meat and potatoes" I do each month is 3waylinks (recommended by Stephen Resell of "Super Simple Blogging"), DirectoryMaximizer and SocialMaximizer (recommended by Matt Rhodes in 4Hour Backlinks). Then I spend money on one or two fiverr gigs to do the diversity thing and I vary it each month amongst the various ways to backlink: forum, blog comment, blogroll, senukex, article marketing, wiki links, other bookmarks, etc.. etc. I figure that gives me diversity

    For keywords I do my best to vary it a lot, including using "click here" and the actual URLs

    I have no idea if this works or not, I'm definitely open to critique if I am doing it wrong (in fact if I am, please tell me!!) - I just based it off of common threads from all the backlink material I've read combined with what I would call my "common sense" (How I notice that I backlink and how I write on my personal blogs)

    But I'm a beginning internet marketer right now, and anxious to be corrected and critiqued. especially in relation to "gurus". I started in earnest in November, not a lot of spare time for this but I do my best, big goals but not even yet at $1000 a month... which is why I started the thread - enjoyed the success of Matt Rhodes PMM system but was then dismayed when my sites fell off the first page - and I would like to study how to tweak those sites to get them back to first page.

    Thank you everyone for all the feedback, I really appreciate it!
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  • Profile picture of the author Brendan Carl
    Try continually adding original content. Google loves evergreen sites, and Google loves original content. I'm not sure what "guru" said that setting-and-forgetting sites is okay, but he/she was wrong.

    Also, keep going with your offsite SEO/backlinking.

    If you do these two things, then you should be set. But, DO NOT set and forget your sites.

    In addition, I noticed that you rely on a ton of tools/software. You really only need Google Keyword Tool, a Blog, a person to outsource too, and some motivation to write. But, hey, if what you are doing works, then keep doing it! Don't fix something that isn't broken!
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      The set-and-forget is in a lot of sales copy of WSO and even in free books with very small niche related sites.

      Thank you for the post. I am getting a lot out of this.

      For backlinking, yes I am using services. While I think I will have time to write one to two posts a month for as many sites as I put up, I don't think I would have the time to backlink to all of them every month, especially as more sites go up.

      Since you are suggesting not doing this, can I ask what works for you? And do you think it will work for an Amazon review site? And how long do you think it would take per month and per site?

      Thank you so much!


      Originally Posted by Brendan Carl View Post

      Try continually adding original content. Google loves evergreen sites, and Google loves original content. I'm not sure what "guru" said that setting-and-forgetting sites is okay, but he/she was wrong.

      Also, keep going with your offsite SEO/backlinking.

      If you do these two things, then you should be set. But, DO NOT set and forget your sites.

      In addition, I noticed that you rely on a ton of tools/software. You really only need Google Keyword Tool, a Blog, a person to outsource too, and some motivation to write. But, hey, if what you are doing works, then keep doing it! Don't fix something that isn't broken!
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      Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
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      • Profile picture of the author Brendan Carl
        Originally Posted by byau View Post

        The set-and-forget is in a lot of sales copy of WSO and even in free books with very small niche related sites.

        Thank you for the post. I am getting a lot out of this.

        For backlinking, yes I am using services. While I think I will have time to write one to two posts a month for as many sites as I put up, I don't think I would have the time to backlink to all of them every month, especially as more sites go up.

        Since you are suggesting not doing this, can I ask what works for you? And do you think it will work for an Amazon review site? And how long do you think it would take per month and per site?

        Thank you so much!

        No problem

        Anyways, I actually only have one Amazon site (which is relatively new), so I cannot offer any hard advice based on experience.

        However, after reading for hours on this forum, I am confident that I have filtered out what works and what doesn't.

        So, I, as well as many other people on this forum, believe that setting up a site without updating it will not hold rankings (and profits) for the long term.

        So try to keep adding articles to your sites. I'm not sure if you use Wordpress as the base for your sites, but if not, I would definitely recommend that. The sheer amount of plugins and themes, as well as the ease of adding new content, makes Wordpress the most valuable tool for any marketer. You will never touch FileZilla again.

        And, if you cannot find time to write articles yourself, outsource it. The cost for writers will be covered with the profits you will make from keeping your site at high rankings. Just look on this forum for copywriters with good feedback. And, don't be afraid to give away a lot of money on writers. The cheap writers (Fiverr) almost always create crap articles.

        Finally, I think your backlinking strategy is great. Your plan for that aspect of your business is definitely solid. Again, if you feel that you are overwhelmed, then hire someone to do all of the backlinking for you. This could cost a lot of money, but the profits from a good ranking will outweigh the initial cost of the SEO expert.

        Personally, for my one site (yes, I know, I'm planning on making a bunch more soon...), I am waiting a little bit before I throw money into outsourcing to see if its profitable (because it's so new). My model is an authority site, with the majority of posts being informational (and keyword-based), with about 1/4 being Amazon product reviews. I am greatly confident, though. Unless the niche is completely bunk (which I know it isn't), authority sites have a great rep.

        So, I hope my little batch of wisdom helped! If you are making money, then really you do not need to change anything. Just see what's working, and focus on that. See what isn't working, and eradicate it.

        If you are making money, then something that you are doing is working. Just find what that something is, and scale from there.

        Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Franklin
      Originally Posted by Brendan Carl View Post

      Try continually adding original content. Google loves evergreen sites, and Google loves original content. I'm not sure what "guru" said that setting-and-forgetting sites is okay, but he/she was wrong.

      Also, keep going with your offsite SEO/backlinking.

      If you do these two things, then you should be set. But, DO NOT set and forget your sites.
      Great GREAT post! I can honestly say that if you follow the bolded advice and put the blinders on and do the necessary work on your site, then you will see long-term success! I can attest to this!

      Just use some discretion with the backlinking as some have become devalued....Follow the backlinking suggestions in this thread and you won't go wrong!

      Set and forget unfortunately has very little merit in the post-Penguin era. It's a sad but true reality with affiliate sites today!
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    • Profile picture of the author yukon
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Brendan Carl View Post

      I'm not sure what "guru" said that setting-and-forgetting sites is okay, but he/she was wrong.
      Actually your wrong, unless your talking about Amazon doorway sites/pages, then yea, those will never see traffic building links & you'll have to babysit the sites for all of eternity.

      I have multiple same niche sites that have been ranking for years where I did the upfront work of creating legit sites & those sites still rank today (right now) for some of the highest traffic keywords in my niche. The sites are in an evergreen niche & have been on auto-pilot ($$) for well over a year, they'll be on auto-pilot this time next year & still earning money.
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      Hi
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  • Profile picture of the author Smastr01
    I just went live on Friday with my first amazon review site. What do you suggest i do for my seo over the mext few weeks. Theres 0 links, It only just showed up in exact domain search yesterday morning. Do you have any suggestions for the first month seo wise? Is it too soon to pay for a linkwheel service? What services are best for newly launched sites, or am i asking for trouble?
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    • Profile picture of the author Brendan Carl
      Originally Posted by Smastr01 View Post

      I just went live on Friday with my first amazon review site. What do you suggest i do for my seo over the mext few weeks. Theres 0 links, It only just showed up in exact domain search yesterday morning. Do you have any suggestions for the first month seo wise? Is it too soon to pay for a linkwheel service? What services are best for newly launched sites, or am i asking for trouble?
      Keep your site evergreen - keep adding content. This doesn't have to be everyday, but don't let it sit for months. Drip-feed content if you must.

      Also, do some manual backlinking. Become active in forums in your niche (with sig links). Post TONS of RELEVANT comments on blogs in your niche. Submit your site to websites such as StumbleUpon and Digg.

      In addition, you could pay for a link wheel (or link pyramid) service on Fiverr. If it doesn't work, you only wasted 5 bucks. That's a McDonalds meal. No biggie.

      If you are serious about your site, you could pay an SEO expert (you can find PLENTY on this site) to do everything for you. This costs a lot of money, so that throws some people off. But, your return will be greater.

      Personally, I am waiting until my site becomes profitable before I spend money on outsourcing. I will try a couple Fiverr gigs (as long as a put a ton of research into it first) to do some backlinking, so I can focus on content writing (I write all of my own content).

      Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Smastr1: I can explain what I do right now - I've had some luck with it since half of my sites got to page 1, (again my question is maintaining page 1). Then again, according to my reading of another thread, it seems this is just Google trying sites out and shouldn't necessarily reflect how well your SEO is working

      So anyway Take it for what it is

      I did outline my backlinking strategy above. I spent the first month to two months on content and used press releases for my backlinks. After that I used directory submissions and bookmark submissions and then chose a fiverr gig that goes into one of the many different ways to get backlinks: video submission, bookmark, article marketing, forum marketing, forum profile, etc..etc.. and then vary it each month

      One thing I can recommend is do more than one site if you can. Do five. If the stat is true that entrepreneurs fail 9 times out of 10, then that realistically means you need to put up 10 sites to get 1 to succeed.

      My numbers for my first 11 sites from what I remember (I have all my numbers at home, not here):
      4 sites = "dogs"
      4 sites = "good"
      3 sites = "great"

      If I had only done one site, and it was a dog, then I possibly would have MISTAKENLY determined the system didn't work. When it actually seems to have a lot to do with doing your niche research to give you the best opportunity, go for it, and hope there is some luck with google, keywords, on page seo, etc. Some sites I thought would do really well, didn't. Some I thought would not do well, did!

      So I did 10 hoping that 5 would do well. I was so hyped, I decided to do the one extra to make it 11. And out of them 7 of them I am happy with, the other 4 I am not.

      So whatever you end up doing, try to do at least 3 sites, maybe 5 sites, hopefully more. Of course the Amazon review sites are relatively easy so you can do more easily. If you're doing some big authority blog that will take a lot more time, then you probably can only afford to do a few (money and resource)




      Originally Posted by Smastr01 View Post

      I just went live on Friday with my first amazon review site. What do you suggest i do for my seo over the mext few weeks. Theres 0 links, It only just showed up in exact domain search yesterday morning. Do you have any suggestions for the first month seo wise? Is it too soon to pay for a linkwheel service? What services are best for newly launched sites, or am i asking for trouble?
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      Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
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      • Profile picture of the author Brendan Carl
        Originally Posted by byau View Post

        One thing I can recommend is do more than one site if you can. Do five. If the stat is true that entrepreneurs fail 9 times out of 10, then that realistically means you need to put up 10 sites to get 1 to succeed.

        If I had only done one site, and it was a dog, then I possibly would have MISTAKENLY determined the system didn't work. When it actually seems to have a lot to do with doing your niche research to give you the best opportunity, go for it, and hope there is some luck with google, keywords, on page seo, etc. Some sites I thought would do really well, didn't. Some I thought would not do well, did!
        That is some of the best advice I've heard in a while. I'll take that to heart

        The main reason I am not building other sites right now is that I am trying to create an authority site. This takes a TON of work. And, with school and work, I do not have enough time to build more sites right now.

        But, I am looking more towards the micro-esque site model (with a couple informational articles for SEO purposes, and a bunch of product reviews - about 15ish posts total? I'll experiment...).

        With my current authority-type model, the informational articles take up 3/4 of the site. The other 1/4 is product reviews. I want to switch this to around 10+ product reviews, with around 3-5 informational articles. I have to do some researching/asking around to see what's working for other people.

        But, thanks for that piece of advice
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  • Profile picture of the author Smastr01
    Thanks for the advice. Whats the approximate conversion rate for these sites? Im having a hard time getting an estimate of that. Id just like it so i can estimate what the approx monthly sales i could attain on first page of google so i have an estimate of what i could later spend on seo(i was estimating 10% per month)
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  • Profile picture of the author gax13
    Banned
    I learn more from here than from a WSO: p
    Thx
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    • Profile picture of the author swi7ch
      Originally Posted by gax13 View Post

      I learn more from here than from a WSO: p
      Thx
      LOL, same.

      Funny how byau admits he is still a newbie yet he knows a lot. I think he'll just have to keep digging around and trying new/other tactics until it all "clicks" (maybe try some black hat tricks on some of your sites that did not do so well).

      Thanks for all the info and hope you figure out the answer to your Google page 1 question!
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      • Profile picture of the author byau
        Very kind

        I know a million ways to do something, but I don't know which one works.

        I spent one year basically reading a lot and having a fire under my butt to do something and then tried to put up a niche blog thinking I knew how to do it before the next shiny object came and I threw that shiny object at my niche blogs and didn't experience overnight success and so I found the next shiny thing (or it found me), threw that at my niche blog, etc..etc.. for about a year. And then I looked back and realized I didn't really know anything still, at least what works because I spent too much time moving to each new thing.

        So I say I'm a newbie because I didn't actually focus and start working until this past November and I chose Amazon sites as my thing (Matt Rhodes Pathetic Money Maker system) since that is what eventually clicked with me.

        I was really happy to see half of my sites hit page 1 and get a lot of traffic, but then they disappeared off of page 1, and thus I'm seeing if anyone can help me out before I stumble forward again

        So knowing a lot through reading, sure... knowing a lot of what would be best in my situation, I'm hoping the gurus who have experience here can give me some ideas (which they have! Thanks!!!)

        I hope I find my answers too!! Or at least some good ideas

        Ben

        Originally Posted by swi7ch View Post

        LOL, same.

        Funny how byau admits he is still a newbie yet he knows a lot. I think he'll just have to keep digging around and trying new/other tactics until it all "clicks" (maybe try some black hat tricks on some of your sites that did not do so well).

        Thanks for all the info and hope you figure out the answer to your Google page 1 question!
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Me too - I was afraid my question was going to result in a bit of blind leading around the blind or newbie leading around the newbie (which still can be a very good discussion!) - I was very happy to hear from some of the senior warrior members here to help guide me (and us) with some of their experience. I'm definitely learning a lot and it is helping me brainstorm more too!
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    • According to our current test results of campaigns we implement for the Amazon product review sites of some of our clients, here are the things Google now focuses on with Penguin:

      • Penguin has a sub component called "Freshness". Google seems to value sites that regularly have new, contextually relevant how tos, guides/tutorials, product comparisons, reviews and videos. By "regularly", the more frequent you post new content on your site, the better. Also, onsite content diversity is an important factor.

      • Penguin now focuses on contextual relevance of backlinks, diversity of backlink sources, backlink anchor diversity and social proof. Google seems to value backlinks posted on social communities, such as Web forums and online social networks, especially backlinks anchored by diverse keywords, including the actual URL of the page, "here", etc., since, with natural backlinks, Google seems to know that the objective of most people when they drop links is not to improve the search engine rankings of those pages. Google seems to value sites with backlinks in contextually relevant sites under contextually relevant categories. They also seem to value sites with backlinks from a diverse set of source sites.

      From what I observed so far, Just do the things you'd do to naturally generate converting traffic for your Amazon product review sites, and Google seems to value your sites more than others that implement unnatural backlink building campaigns. My advice:

      =>> Regularly post content not published elsewhere, for the benefit of your target viewers.

      =>> Diversify your onsite content, because different groups of people have different preferences when it comes to viewing content on the Internet.

      =>> Improve the internal linking structure of your site, with the objective of making it easier and simpler for your viewers to access the relevant content of your other pages.

      =>> Hang out in the places where your target viewers go to discuss relevant things with like-minded people, such as contextually relevant Web forums and online social networks with high authority in your niches, with the objective of contributing useful info and advice in those places to establish your reputation as a friendly expert resource of beneficial and relevant content, products and services.

      =>> Guest Blogging - Contact owners and administrators of contextually relevant sites with higha uthority in relevant niches, to offer them content for the benefit of their viewers, so you can funnel their traffic from their sites to yours -- Some of them might only accept content that won't be published elsewhere, but there are some who'd accept content already published on your site, since they'd want to provide value to their viewers, members and mailing list subscribers.

      =>> Content Syndication -- Submit your published and indexed onsite content to ezine networks and content syndication channels with a large active publisher base comprised of webmasters and site owners who frequently search for contextually relevant content that they can publish on their sites for the benefit of their viewers, members and mailing list subscribers, since you'd be funneling their traffic from their sites to yours...
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      • Profile picture of the author byau
        WOWWOWOWOWW! Thanks! I will definitely need to read these all in greater detail and absorb. And I especially appreciate your input as you said this is what you are doing these specifically for the Amazon sites. Thank you! I anticipate I'll have quite a few follow up questions!!! For now..THANKS!

        Originally Posted by Marx Vergel Melencio View Post

        According to our current test results of campaigns we implement for the Amazon product review sites of some of our clients, here are the things Google now focuses on with Penguin:.....

        (lots of great stuff deleted for brevity)
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  • Profile picture of the author Lloyd Buchinski
    Just a few things I noticed. On the speaker site front page, you have a price of $50. That is flat out against the Amazon TOS. Their prices change frequently, and they do not want other sites stating a price.

    Don't forget about the Google dance. I don't know how old the domains are, but it is very common for sites to get to the first page when they are new and then drop off. Sometimes they climb right back up. It might be just more time that is needed.

    Your expenses surprised me. For low traffic sites, I've always managed to have quite a few on a single host about $7 a month. Having cheap hosting frees you up a bit and lets you experiment without suffering financially.
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Originally Posted by Lloyd Buchinski View Post

      Just a few things I noticed. On the speaker site front page, you have a price of $50. That is flat out against the Amazon TOS. Their prices change frequently, and they do not want other sites stating a price.
      Wow..thanks very much for that. Was not aware... Thanks!

      Don't forget about the Google dance. I don't know how old the domains are, but it is very common for sites to get to the first page when they are new and then drop off. Sometimes they climb right back up. It might be just more time that is needed.
      That is something I read on another forum .. I wasn't really too aware of that either though I've heard of the Google Dance. The advice on the other forum was at that point just keep doing things consistently as well (new content, consistent backlinks). Thank you


      Your expenses surprised me. For low traffic sites, I've always managed to have quite a few on a single host about $7 a month. Having cheap hosting frees you up a bit and lets you experiment without suffering financially.
      Well, I overestimated my expenses Which I don't think is a bad thing. However, I did notice having even three or four sites on a single $7/month hosting seemed to really slow down the sites. So I opted for reselling accounts ($15 to $20) and used that ... and I can manage about 5 to 10 sites on those.

      For hosting I ended up putting $5/month but yes that is an overestimate, you're sharp - good eye.

      For my monthly expenses, this is what I put
      $5/month = hosting + domain
      $4/month = 3waylinks (up to 50 sites can be one account so this cost will go down as more sites go up. Total cost I believe is $47 to $49 per month for up to 50 sites)
      $5/month = directory maximizer submissions (20 to 23 a month)
      $5/month = social bookmark maximizer submissions (20 to 23 a month)

      Then $5 or $10 a month for one or two fiverr gigs

      I'm also sure there are cheaper solutions, but I went with those three services because of their recommendations by two gurus that I trust so I'm sticking with them blindly for now.

      The two costs that will actaully go down are hosting (overestimate) and 3waylinks (as I add more sites)

      A question for you then: have you had better luck with more sites on a single non-reseller hosting account (which generally are the $4 to $8 per month)? If so, what kind of sites and how many?

      Thanks again for the the Amazon TOS tip there. I will need to check on that right quick (and thanks for checking the site and the feedback, I appreciate that)
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Well, I do have one more comment.

      Besides the few places where I put you can specifically buy on Amazon for $X (those are on the bestseller lists) where I believe those are what you are saying is against the Amazon TOS,

      In the review articles themselves I am simply putting a price range and not quoting them as Amazon prices. That should be okay right?

      Originally Posted by Lloyd Buchinski View Post

      Just a few things I noticed. On the speaker site front page, you have a price of $50. That is flat out against the Amazon TOS. Their prices change frequently, and they do not want other sites stating a price.
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      • Profile picture of the author Lloyd Buchinski
        Originally Posted by byau View Post

        In the review articles themselves I am simply putting a price range and not quoting them as Amazon prices. That should be okay right?
        I don't actually know. I haven't looked at that in detail.

        I did check a product one time for 4 days in a row, and the price was different each day.

        The 'no price on the aff site' rule just makes sense to me. Anything that can confuse a customer, can also stop the sale.

        And about the google dance, this is the sticky topic about it from the seo/ppc/etc sub forum. http://www.warriorforum.com/adsense-...questions.html
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    • Profile picture of the author Ben Armstrong
      The game has changed re Amazon sites. You can still rank well without updating your content regularly. Just make sure you're not over optimizing for your keywords both on-page and off-page.
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  • Profile picture of the author FreeMeal
    I've struggled recently to consistently rank any "traditional style" Amazon review site. I have a hunch that Google has it in for a particular type of Amazon review site -- the type that became very popular a couple of years ago, and that a lot of people are continuing to build now (it's just a hunch tho). The blueprint is slightly outdated. You need to take the basic principles and re-apply them with a bit of creative flair.

    There was a point when about 6 or 7 of the top ten Google positions for any sort of physical product were basically the same ugly looking wordpress sites with the same tatty templates and bland review style (not saying that's what you have). No doubt they converted well, and they still do if you can get the traffic, but it's not very good from a user experience point of view, and i think google have noticed it.

    Try writing reviews/articles that help people solve their problems, and answer their questions. Add personality. Try and make them as unique as possible by adding your own images etc. Go for the magazine-style look. Tell them a story -- don't tell them what JazzyJay81 said on Amazon about his leaky Suzuki solar-powered-foot-spa. Empathize with their "dry feet issue", then tell them xxx brand will solve the issue. You target xxx brand as your keyword for that particular article.

    I have found that when I build sites like that, they tend to rank themselves with a gentle shove in the right direction. I stopped outsourcing my SEO when I made that change. None of them made a blind bit of difference anymore. I used the money instead to hire good quality writers for content. You can also then keep a regular content top-up by doing a little "curation" within you niche; It helps keep you on the Google radar.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ben Armstrong
      Originally Posted by FreeMeal View Post

      I've struggled recently to consistently rank any "traditional style" Amazon review site. I have a hunch that Google has it in for a particular type of Amazon review site -- the type that became very popular a couple of years ago, and that a lot of people are continuing to build now (it's just a hunch tho). The blueprint is slightly outdated. You need to take the basic principles and re-apply them with a bit of creative flair.

      There was a point when about 6 or 7 of the top ten Google positions for any sort of physical product were basically the same ugly looking wordpress sites with the same tatty templates and bland review style (not saying that's what you have). No doubt they converted well, and they still do if you can get the traffic, but it's not very good from a user experience point of view, and i think google have noticed it.

      Try writing reviews/articles that help people solve their problems, and answer their questions. Add personality. Try and make them as unique as possible by adding your own images etc. Go for the magazine-style look. Tell them a story -- don't tell them what JazzyJay81 said on Amazon about his leaky Suzuki solar-powered-foot-spa. Empathize with their "dry feet issue", then tell them xxx brand will solve the issue. You target xxx brand as your keyword for that particular article.

      I have found that when I build sites like that, they tend to rank themselves with a gentle shove in the right direction. I stopped outsourcing my SEO when I made that change. None of them made a blind bit of difference anymore. I used the money instead to hire good quality writers for content. You can also then keep a regular content top-up by doing a little "curation" within you niche; It helps keep you on the Google radar.
      While I agree that the traditional style Amazon review sites are struggling post-penguin, I'm not sure I agree with the reasons you're putting forward.

      I doubt google's algo has the ability to decide whether or not the review is discussing reviews on amazon etc. Unless of course you're copying them word for word or paraphrasing poorly.

      My guess would be that google have figured out things that these sites have in common. It wouldn't be hard to do given that they all pretty much follow the same formula, and a formula that's almost exclusive to Amazon review sites.

      My suggestion is to change the layout of your site. Instead of having a main page with 10 excerpts of your reviews try and include sub pages or category pages in between the main page and the review pages. Just switch up the format a little.
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    • Profile picture of the author TuNguyen
      re: Below - Thats some good advice right there.

      Additionally, I feel that far too many people try to get into this game without appreciating the importance of good fundamental design principles.

      In our case, the design of our information based websites should always look something like a "glossy" magazine (e.g. uncluttered, good use of white spaces, bold headlines, bullet points etc) and also features smart IM principles (e.g short paragraphs, a call to action etc).

      Come on people, get the basics right first. Focus on the user experience.

      Originally Posted by FreeMeal View Post

      I've struggled recently to consistently rank any "traditional style" Amazon review site. I have a hunch that Google has it in for a particular type of Amazon review site -- the type that became very popular a couple of years ago, and that a lot of people are continuing to build now (it's just a hunch tho). The blueprint is slightly outdated. You need to take the basic principles and re-apply them with a bit of creative flair.

      There was a point when about 6 or 7 of the top ten Google positions for any sort of physical product were basically the same ugly looking wordpress sites with the same tatty templates and bland review style (not saying that's what you have). No doubt they converted well, and they still do if you can get the traffic, but it's not very good from a user experience point of view, and i think google have noticed it.

      Try writing reviews/articles that help people solve their problems, and answer their questions. Add personality. Try and make them as unique as possible by adding your own images etc. Go for the magazine-style look. Tell them a story -- don't tell them what JazzyJay81 said on Amazon about his leaky Suzuki solar-powered-foot-spa. Empathize with their "dry feet issue", then tell them xxx brand will solve the issue. You target xxx brand as your keyword for that particular article.

      I have found that when I build sites like that, they tend to rank themselves with a gentle shove in the right direction. I stopped outsourcing my SEO when I made that change. None of them made a blind bit of difference anymore. I used the money instead to hire good quality writers for content. You can also then keep a regular content top-up by doing a little "curation" within you niche; It helps keep you on the Google radar.
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    Good info FreeMeal. I do something very similar with my own sites. What many people forget (or do not realize) is that much of their site's traffic has already been to Amazon and read the reviews there. They don't need (or want) you re-hashing what they've already read.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gaz Cooper
    Adding regular original content is even more important these days and Google actually posted on their blog that they now look at how often a site is updated and relevant content added, so it is very important now that you add more content to your site on a regular basis meaning BI WEEKLY or at least once a month.

    I have several products in development and one of them will directly relate to the new changes and make life a little easier for Amazon Affiliates post Panda.

    Kickin it on Amazon

    Gaz Cooper
    Amz Training Academy
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  • Profile picture of the author Buybacklink
    You can try to do Massive Link Building: article marketing, social bookmarking, forum profile, blog comments..
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Really? That sounds really general- anything specific?

      Originally Posted by Buybacklink View Post

      You can try to do Massive Link Building: article marketing, social bookmarking, forum profile, blog comments..
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  • Profile picture of the author anwar001
    I think your sites were hit after the Penguin update. What kind of backlinks had you built to the sites in the first place to get them ranked on first page?
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Originally Posted by anwar001 View Post

      I think your sites were hit after the Penguin update. What kind of backlinks had you built to the sites in the first place to get them ranked on first page?
      That is what I'm thinking now. At first I thought it was some sort of manual review thing. But then I started reading about a recent Google Penguin update and think it is possible that is what hit me.

      To answer the backlnks question:

      Backlinks are a mix - I did outline what I did in a previous post , but here's the summary:

      Site Build: one primary backlink from a press release site (I am wary of mentioning it since I got it direct from Matt Rhodes program and one of his selling points on the program was divulging his press release source)
      Then one to three months of just content building
      Month two or three: Then adding site to 3waylinks (think of it as a webring network) (recommended by Stephen Resell as a source for backlinks)
      Month two or three: adding to social maximizer and directory maximizer (recommended by Matt Rhodes as a source for backlinks)
      Then Month three (or four) and on: choosing a random fiverr gig (or two) to add the variety of link type and link source and link IP: forum profile, senukex, blog comment, article marketing, blogroll, etc..etc. (all the main ways of backlinking most backlink books talk about)

      When I can, I make sure to vary my anchor text - not just use the keyword that is the same as my exact match domain, but also the related keywords as well as the URLs of my website. Sometimes some fiverr gigs only give a choice of one keyword and if that is the case I use the same as my domain

      Oh, and I didn't always choose the same for all sites. I had 11 sites in my campaign1, so maybe two of those got the social bookmarking treatment, 2 got the forum profile treatment, 2 got the senukex treatment, etc..etc.. and I recorded these all in a spreadsheet so that the next month I could do something different with each site (so if you seriously want to know all the details of what I've done, I do have it recorded in detail in my spreadsheets)

      So what do you think? Did some of these harm my site chances after the update?

      Two of the sites, by the way, did not hit first page for keyword until AFTER the update (and then disappeared a week or two weeks later)

      I did read a blog entry (don't have URL handy) that the Penguin update was actually a bit buggy and things needed to settle a bit, that some competitive keywords even came up with empty blog pages for #1 result and some other competitive keywords came up with non-related sites for #1.

      Stephen Resell (Super Simple Blogging) had written specifically that he found exact keyword match as primary anchor text did made sites go down UNLESS the website itself was exact keyword match (which makes sense if you think about it).

      All in all, the one thing I noticed was that I did most of my backlinks direct to my site. Perhaps I need to do the thing where I write and post some articles and maybe youtube videos with links to my site, and then build backlinks as secondary links to the articles and youtube videos?

      Or ... per the conversation in this thread, just don't sweat it and keep doing consistent posting on the blogs and some sort of consistent backlinks from a variety of sources? I like the suggestions which spawned the of idea of just posting newsworthy related items once or twice a month. I think I'll be creating a new category called "News" (instead of "Blog") and just post most things there that are not straight out product reviews or bestseller lists.

      Anyway, I know it sounds like I know what I'm doing ..I really am not sure. It seems my strategy was alright since I got to page 1. Was it just a fluke they got to first and they really didn't deserve to be there? Or I got kicked off for some other reasons?

      That's also why I put two sites as examples in case anyone can take a look and tell me about the on page content.

      Thanks for your input! Tell me what you think and ideas you have for my dilmena.

      Ben
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  • Profile picture of the author nik0
    Banned
    Just keep on building links, you are never done in SEO
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Sure, I realize that - my question is any strategies out there that have worked with Amazon review sites to stay on page 1?

      Anything specific you recommend?

      Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

      Just keep on building links, you are never done in SEO
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      • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
        Originally Posted by byau View Post

        Sure, I realize that - my question is any strategies out there that have worked with Amazon review sites to stay on page 1?

        Anything specific you recommend?
        Since I target low competition products, my reviews sometimes stay on page one for months. Others don't.

        If I'm promoting a fairly competitive product, the tried and true method of building Web 2.0 properties and linking back to my product review usually works.
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Thanks all! I've opted just to do the adding of "news" content twice a month I'm also going to cut down on some of the fiverr SEO gigs I've been doing.

    What convinced me was that first the guy who wrote the system I'm using got back to me too and suggested all the extracurricular SEO was not necessary.

    Second, my highest earning site for the last few months actually had just the basic meat and potatoes type SEO on it

    Will send an update if anything interesting happens
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  • Profile picture of the author Craig McPherson
    What I have found since April and a handful of other successful associates I hang with all came to the conclusion that if you have both Amazon and Adsense on your site you will get penalised.

    Consider this
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeannie Crabtree
    If I understand you correctly, you start backlinking at about 3 months. So by then you are on first page and doing fairly well.

    Then you start backlinking. If you do very many backlinks at once, directly to your site post Panda, Google has a "reaction", a google dance if you will.

    Google then has to decide where your site or page fits in compared to others, so it drops off the first page and may end up on page 16. It can then take weeks for it to work its way up to the first page again, often times at a higher position.

    My experience has been, If you are going to get backlinks, do only small amounts at a time directly to your posts/pages. Then you don't have such a big dip. Extreme example: I have had 3 blog comments take my post off the first page. So certainly 25 backlinks from other sources are going to be better than getting 125 backlinks all at once.

    Jeannie


    Originally Posted by byau View Post

    Hi all,
    So my (young) IM career currently is dedicated to Amazon review sites. My first campaign (that's what I call them) was 11 sites. I'm in the process of tweaking those while building my campaign 2 (8 sites)

    Anyway, for my campaign1, quite a few of them did well (by well I mean two to three months of $80 to $110 each).

    The others are doing fairly well. However I am noticing a trend.

    Each site that does fairly well is because it gets on to page 1 of its intended keyword (all sites are exact match for a keyword). It stays there awhile, then it gets dropped off.

    So my question is: what's the best strategy for these sites to stay on page 1? Why did they drop off?

    I have heard that once on page 1, the site goes under a manual review and from there possibly might get dropped. So I'm guessing it's possible my content was not considered valuable? Either that or the sites that are on page 1 legitimately booted me off with off-page SEO or better content?

    Anyway, all sites have handwritten review by me which I actually consider to be pretty good quality.

    Then I experimented with the bestseller lists (as outlined in Jamie "GoGetta's Amazon Mindset WSO) and had that as my home page.

    Then I wrote up some mini buyer guides (Tips on buying XXX) and had that as my home page

    Then I also wrote up more detailed buyer guides but have not made those my home page yet but a separate page (linked from home page)

    Anyway, so my question is what do you guys think? Any of these strategies sound feasible? Or do I just continue slowly and surely doing my off-page SEO?

    Or ... any other ideas?

    Thanks!!
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    • Profile picture of the author DarrenHaynes
      Originally Posted by Jeannie Crabtree View Post

      If I understand you correctly, you start backlinking at about 3 months. So by then you are on first page and doing fairly well.

      Then you start backlinking. If you do very many backlinks at once, directly to your site post Panda, Google has a "reaction", a google dance if you will.

      Google then has to decide where your site or page fits in compared to others, so it drops off the first page and may end up on page 16. It can then take weeks for it to work its way up to the first page again, often times at a higher position.

      My experience has been, If you are going to get backlinks, do only small amounts at a time directly to your posts/pages. Then you don't have such a big dip. Extreme example: I have had 3 blog comments take my post off the first page. So certainly 25 backlinks from other sources are going to be better than getting 125 backlinks all at once.

      Jeannie
      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^THIS^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

      Jeannie has written the most clear explanation as to why I also think you have lost rankings.

      I would go one step further and say if you hit the site with fiverr gigs, SEnukes and other mass submission software then you might be having more trouble than a google dance, you might need to start those sites over. However, they may be dancing.

      When reading your opening post it was these link building methods at month 3 that you used that put the red flag up for me.

      Here I will explain how I have some amazon sites ranking top 10, and with very little effort.

      I built 3 amazon review affiliate sites about 6 months ago, now they are all in the top 10 for their main keywords, one of them in the top 3. How many links did I send them? 30. Each site got 30 links in the first 2 months of their existence and then I forgot all about the sites. I got, and am still, busy with other things. The only reason I new they were ranking is that I started getting emails from a few companies wanting to advertise on one of the sites. (the site that hit the top 3 for several keywords 1000-3000 exact match a month. the other two sites are in the 5- 10 rank in goog).

      I was very surprised to see them doing so well.

      Ok, so where did i get the backlinks? Well I heard Angela and Pauls backlinks are back, ok that was a bad joke, based on some other crazy stuff I read elsewhere here on this forum.

      In truth I got the links from postrunner2 network. Not a plug or an affiliate link, just a fact. 30 pieces of unique content sent to sites in the network, nothing more. I used a variety of anchor text, post titles and naked url's, so I didn't go heavy on any one keyword, just a small bias for those links I wanted to rank for, and you can't go to far out of town with just 30 links.

      For those who think fresh content is a factor, check this out - I have 1 or 2 pages of content on each site, and that is it. Both pages put on the site 6 months ago when I created them. They have zero fresh content since. To be honest I would like to flesh them out a bit more now and send them another 10 links, but I am just too maxed with other stuff, but as soon as I get an opening I will be giving them some more help.

      Seriously - I really think it is the mass link building done with fiverr that caused your rankings to drop.
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Interesting about the adsense and amazon, hadn't heard that one before. For the linking strategy, I am definitely going to overall be more conservative on the backlinking in general and a bit more aggressive on content.

    Still trying to figure this one out, I really appreciate all the feedback!
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    • Profile picture of the author jt47000
      Hi Byau,

      Great thread man! I've learned alot and It's a miracle that I've found this because I'm going through the same thing right now. I built two sites June 1st 2012, new content/reviews, site was ranking right behind amazon and sometimes in front of and then poof... gone.

      My sites went away when I started backlinking to a few related blogs (not spammy or off the subject. They were legit and had PR). I feel that this is due to the google dance and whenever you build backlinks you will start dancing.

      I'm thinking its gotta be "dancing" because my pr has gone up from the backlinks but my site is still nowhere to be found on google. It does come up still under" site:mysite.com" search thread so I can elimnate getting sandboxed.

      My question to you is...

      "Have you seen your sites that lost al rank come out of it? Did they eventually pull through? Or are they still in limbo somewhere, lost?"

      It blows my mind when I do keyword researcha and I see how saturated EVERY product out there is. But... This is mining for gold and not mining dirt so that is expected.

      Earlier this year I came across a guide (before penguin) that was basically a test for me. It was a step by step guide to where this guy took a high ranking keyword and basically (in like 2 months) got it to number one. I tried it for a keyword that had about 2400 searches a month.. and it worked!!! I'm thinkin I'll try it for these amazon sites and report back my findings. But t was with just a regular microniche site and not an amazon site which I'm starting to think are totally different.

      Thanks for asking your questions Byau!! You've taught me alot about this and are helping tons of people. You're also making it a bit easier for me to sleep at night knowing someone else is going through this too...

      Thanks Buddy,

      J
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  • Profile picture of the author TuNguyen
    Ben,

    Also as you have created and nurtured such a great thread, I'd like to contribute some of my experiences that may relate to your endeavour.

    About 6 months ago, I created an (EMD) Amazon review site. It is well designed and has around 45 posts (4-5 of the posts are literally just related videos I've found on youtube). I did no backlinking whatsoever.

    It had a high SERP initially for its targeted keyword, but then disappeared a few weeks after. I suspect that would be the Google dance.

    It is now back on page 1, ranked at position 3-4 just under the main manufacturers site.

    Take what you want from that, and I guess the important thing is to not worry and just continue whatever you are doing right now. Your method methods seem solid enough and does not rely on any dodgy short cuts.
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    So just an update - I mentioned if anything interesting happened I'd write.

    The few sites I was tracking in particular that disappeared have come back onto page 1 for the keywords I've been checking on. They are not in the top 3 positions as they used to be, but they are back in the middle of the first page. Correspondingly I am seeing the adsense impressions going back up a bit too. There is still one site I am tracking that has disappeared to page 5 or so. Curious to see if that will come back.

    Not sure if it happened on its own or what ... but in case you all are curious this is what I have been doing:

    I stopped my SEO efforts on fiverr. Continued the social bookmarking and directory submissions as well. Continued the 3 way links as well.

    Two big changes:

    First: bought 1 to 3 links each month from some blogs (PRs 2 to 5). I am a bit wary about this though because I don't know what is considered a "spammy" blog or not.

    Second: Per the advice from this thread I have been updating the content two to four times a month. I created a category called "News" - I have found various news items related to the niche of the site and post links to them with my own one to five paragraph opinion on that news item which has actually been pretty fun Sometimes I link only to the news item. Sometimes in addition I will internally link to a product or other page on my site. Whether or not this helped, I do like that it adds some original quality content every so often to the site.

    Thanks again everyone for the help!
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Per the last recent posts about too many links too fast:

    I was doing my best to be aware of my backlinking and amounts of backlinks. I had read very similar experiences about too many backlinks too fast = bad. That is why I started with the "meat and potatoes" back links (as I call them: 3 way links, directory submission, and social bookmark submission) at around month 2 or 3 (no backlinks in month 1 or 2). Then to increase the number of backlinks in month 3 and 4 I started using the fiverr gigs

    I was being cautious with the fiverr gigs and chose those that only linked less than 30 direct links to my site (some of them would do multi-level linking and do less than 30 direct, with many more hundreds or thousands on second level).

    I figured that was pretty safe. But who knows, maybe it wasn't. I was taking what I thought was a "cautious" approach to backlinking as far as increase in backlinks and types of backlinks, but maybe it still hurt my site's rankings.

    So perhaps it was the google dance, perhaps not.

    Jeannie, Darren and Tu: I definitely appreciate your relating your experiences! Extremely helpful and reinforces the idea (for Amazon sites at least) how valuable content is and to perhaps be on the more cautious side of backlinking (or maybe not even doing backlinking)

    For J: I have been tracking four sites specifically and three of them are back on page 1 for the targeted keyword. 1 is still list somewhere (per my previous post)
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Originally Posted by Extreme DoFollow View Post


    Other than that, it might be more profitable to build more sites rather than worry about current ones.
    Such a good point Thanks!

    I was wrestling with wanting to increase conversions on my site too - I am getting a healthy amount of amazon clicks and wanted to spend time on seeing if I could convert more with the existing traffic.

    Over the weekend I did end up deciding on just going forward with more sites. Glad to hear the suggestion come up to since I had been thinking about that for a bit longer than I wanted to.
    Cheers!
    Ben
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  • Profile picture of the author Nicole K
    It's good to have several Amazon sites. Keep the ones that are doing well and dispose off the rest by selling them on sites like Flippa.

    Several sites means more visitors to Amazon and your chances of getting sales increases.
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    • Profile picture of the author byau
      Hi, interesting point and a question

      At what point do you consider getting rid of a site? Three months? Six months?

      Also, who would buy such a site?

      In my case, I roll out about 10 sites at a time. I'd say after about four or five months there are usually 2 to 3 "winners", another 3 to 4 that just about maintain, and another 2 to 3 that make little money.

      So with that logic, I should sell the 2 to 3 that make little money (either little to no traffic, or traffic but just not a buyer's market perhaps?) - but how would you sell these 2-3 sites that don't make money? What sort of person would buy them?

      Thanks a lot!




      Originally Posted by Nicole K View Post

      It's good to have several Amazon sites. Keep the ones that are doing well and dispose off the rest by selling them on sites like Flippa.

      Several sites means more visitors to Amazon and your chances of getting sales increases.
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      • Profile picture of the author LocoDice
        Hi Byau, I have this very thread in my IM study notes to come back to because you are on exactly the path I want to be on - setting up niche amazon sites.

        I'd be very interested to get your opinion since I have heard the latest Google updates have really wrecked some havoc on these kind of niche sites - really interested to hear what you've got to say.

        Hope this thread does not die!

        Thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    Google has not hurt Amazon sites, provided they are providing quality content. My sites (and those of many other members) are doing even better now than they were 2 weeks ago.

    It was the thin, EMD-based sites that were mostly affected.

    Provide good content that people actually want to read and you should be good for the most part.
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    • Profile picture of the author Berkinb
      Once again, I can attest to this

      The last few Amazon sites we set up were not EMDs. They were "brandable" domains that encompass a number of niches each and we haven't seen anything but positive movements after the last updates.

      However, we do not target big and general keywords like "Best XXX", "XXX reviews". Instead, we go after product specific keywords with each post.

      There are three main advantages of this:

      1- Most of our posts (around 70-75%) rank within top 10 in a matter of days and start to bring in traffic.
      2- The traffic is more targeted than those you'd receive from bigger keywords as most people are in the later stages of the shopping cycle.
      3- The posts that do not rank (or rank but do not bring in traffic) are still valuable since they all are relevant content which add to the overall size and power of the site.

      We are now in the process of adding informational pages like "xxx buying guide" and "10 ways to use your XXX more efficiently" which I believe will add to the number/rate of return visits we get.

      So, Google doesn't seem to be on a warpath against Amazon sites from where we stand.

      Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

      Google has not hurt Amazon sites, provided they are providing quality content. My sites (and those of many other members) are doing even better now than they were 2 weeks ago.

      It was the thin, EMD-based sites that were mostly affected.

      Provide good content that people actually want to read and you should be good for the most part.
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    • Profile picture of the author cooler1
      Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

      Google has not hurt Amazon sites, provided they are providing quality content. My sites (and those of many other members) are doing even better now than they were 2 weeks ago.

      It was the thin, EMD-based sites that were mostly affected.

      Provide good content that people actually want to read and you should be good for the most part.
      What is "quality content"? The algo doesn't know if a review is useful and helpful to the readers which is why you see rubbish Facebook note pages ranking on page 1 which have content scraped from Amazon.

      My sites were affected in the EMD update, but my domain contained a keyword such as "niche name + review". The reviews were well written plus had good spelling and grammar, so this whole thing about "low quality" EMD's being affected seems a blur.

      Does it mean that all EMDs have had their ranking boost taken away from them, but only the ones deemed as poor quality have actually incurred a ranking penalty?

      Originally Posted by Berkinb View Post

      1- Most of our posts (around 70-75%) rank within top 10 in a matter of days and start to bring in traffic.
      What sort of backlinking do you do for your posts?
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      • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
        Originally Posted by cooler1 View Post

        What is "quality content"? The algo doesn't know if a review is useful and helpful to the readers which is why you see rubbish Facebook note pages ranking on page 1 which have content scraped from Amazon.

        ......


        What sort of backlinking do you do for your posts?
        Quality content is content that visitors actually want to read. Although Google may (or may not) be able to discern "quality", other sites can. When I get the occasional (usually once or twice a month) crush of traffic (several hundred visitors) to "one" product in the span of 48 hours as a result of a referral made on some other site, I'm glad my content is useful.

        I don't do any backlinking outside of the automated bookmarking of each new review.
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      • Profile picture of the author Berkinb
        Nothing more than automatic onlywire submissions to around 10 sites. Most of these keywords do not require much in terms of linking mate.

        Originally Posted by cooler1 View Post

        What sort of backlinking do you do for your posts?
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        • Profile picture of the author cooler1
          Originally Posted by Berkinb View Post

          Nothing more than automatic onlywire submissions to around 10 sites. Most of these keywords do not require much in terms of linking mate.
          In Google's latest quality guidelines they mentioned mass social bookmark submissions as the things against the guidelines. Could onlywire come under that or is it only an issue if you submit to hundereds of bookmarking sites?

          Does onlywire help with improving the serp rankings in anyway or is it just used to index posts?
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          • Profile picture of the author Berkinb
            I only submit to 10 sites at most mate. And they are mostly to index the pages faster (and as your site grows, Google seems to be picking up new posts rather fast even without them).

            Originally Posted by cooler1 View Post

            In Google's latest quality guidelines they mentioned mass social bookmark submissions as the things against the guidelines. Could onlywire come under that or is it only an issue if you submit to hundereds of bookmarking sites?

            Does onlywire help with improving the serp rankings in anyway or is it just used to index posts?
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  • Profile picture of the author nik0
    Banned
    How to stay on page one? Wolf told me his secret, scrapebox blasts all the way :p
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    • Profile picture of the author LocoDice
      Thanks for the updates fellas.

      Any additional blueprints, guides, etc for rolling out authority amazon sites?
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      • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
        Originally Posted by LocoDice View Post

        Thanks for the updates fellas.

        Any additional blueprints, guides, etc for rolling out authority amazon sites?
        There are a few good ones out there
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    • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
      Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

      How to stay on page one? Wolf told me his secret, scrapebox blasts all the way :p
      No.... Don't tell people that. Some will take you seriously.
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      • Profile picture of the author nik0
        Banned
        Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

        No.... Don't tell people that. Some will take you seriously.
        Yeah now you say it wouldn't surprise lol
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    I use OnlyWire for indexing only and I only use 5-10 of the sites.
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  • Profile picture of the author adamcm
    I believe OnlyWire supports quite a few different social platforms. Do you guys mind sharing which 5-10 you use?
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    • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
      Originally Posted by adamcm View Post

      I believe OnlyWire supports quite a few different social platforms. Do you guys mind sharing which 5-10 you use?
      It varies. I don't have a set group that I use.
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    • Profile picture of the author Berkinb
      Sure mate, I submit to the following sites:

      Bibsonomy
      Connotea
      Delicious
      Diigo
      Folkd
      Hi5
      Jumptags
      LiveJournal
      StumbleUpon
      Twitter

      Originally Posted by adamcm View Post

      I believe OnlyWire supports quite a few different social platforms. Do you guys mind sharing which 5-10 you use?
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  • Profile picture of the author smithtg11
    i get alot of referral traffic from stumbledupon when I post to onlywire, but the problem with them it really is just people surfing. The way I figure though, its still a unique visitor and if they like your niche/website, they will bookmark and be back
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  • Profile picture of the author byau
    Hi, interesting to see this thread was a bit active after I had stopped checking in. My sites did get crushed pretty well with the Google update, but I have a feeling it was more my backlinking practices than anything else. I still get some traffic and sales even though I have stopped all activity on the sites (including updating them with regular blog posts).

    I actually stopped IM for the most part in October because long story short, I was mostly managing a lot of outsourcing of content being written to prepare for all my new sites and then took a stop because my wife and I had a new addition to our family in November

    December was off for holidays

    January was launching a new business

    Finally starting in February I started re-designing my Amazon review sites to be new and more google friendly, taking all of the info in this thread into account (thanks guys!!). And all this time my other amazon sites, while not performing nearly as well as they had been, are still getting trickles of traffic and orders - at some point I will go back to updating the sites at some regular basis (once a month?) just to see if it gets more traffic . And maybe start doing some minimal backlinking of some sort (once a month).

    But right now my focus is designing a much higher quality amazon review site. I'll make sure to update everyone to let you know how it's going.

    But thanks to everyone who contributed (and still contirbuting) to this thread! I have found this to be very very helpful!!

    Onward and upward!
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      After your 2nd post it already said enough but I missed the thead out of sight and probably I was in such mood that I didn't feel like reading all of it, same like right now.

      Either way without too much info:

      - You used to spam each month with a different Fiverr gig and/or repeated multiple as well, that can last for a while but never for long, besides that the links have hardly any power so you must blast a lot of them to make a change, and thus each month your link profile gets more and more spammy

      - Another reason why you have to keep building links when using such approach is cause it's spam and spam gets removed by webmasters, another thing is that spam often ends up on the homepage or a high page with PR and then drops of to page nowhere, so that's already a natural loss of link juice that you can't do much else about besides, right sending more links.

      - Link building is an ongoing process and that's why it's important to build links that last. Quality links, even then you often end up with the situation that they end up deeper and deeper on a site but at least you won't completely lose them. A lot of lost links can lead to penalties

      - Over optimization is another thing that helped your sites going down, doesn't always results in penalties where you get kicked out of the top 500, often also results in frozen rankings.

      Although a good amount of quality content definitely helps you move up in the ranks it's not so that you MUST keep on doing that till eternity so you're right on that front.

      So next time only use fiverr gigs as tier 2 links and even then it's weak and build quality links yourself or outsource the link building part to someone who knows what he's doing. It might look expensive first but when you look at the time you spend yourself to find quality links and the money you need to invest into your own network then it isn't all that expensive anymore.
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      Originally Posted by byau View Post

      Hi, interesting to see this thread was a bit active after I had stopped checking in. My sites did get crushed pretty well with the Google update, but I have a feeling it was more my backlinking practices than anything else. I still get some traffic and sales even though I have stopped all activity on the sites (including updating them with regular blog posts).

      I actually stopped IM for the most part in October because long story short, I was mostly managing a lot of outsourcing of content being written to prepare for all my new sites and then took a stop because my wife and I had a new addition to our family in November

      December was off for holidays

      January was launching a new business
      Congrats on the baby and good luck with the new business, real businesses pay off a lot better then this stupid affiliate marketing stuff.
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      • Profile picture of the author byau
        Hi,
        It was definitely a great learning tool. And the fact that I've been hands off on my amazon websites to take care of other things (my new son! thanks for the congrats! and launching the new dance school) and they've still generated a small bit of income is encouraging.

        At this point it is almost.. well, do I go back and correct the old sites? Or do I go forward with the new one.

        Part of the learning process was definitely figuring out what happened to the old sites. You outlined it very well. A lot of it was improper backlinking in a lot of different ways, and the content itself actually was not at fault so much. So fixing the old sites would be starting all my backlinking from ground zero again which isn't a bad thing, I have the advantage that the sites are aged (and half of them are PR 1 too). And it would just be a matter of doing the blog posts twice a month plus utilizing some better backlink practices.

        I did decide to forego that and keep that in the back of my head as I work instead on building some better sites for the long term.

        Anyway, I'll keep this thread updated with the things I will do and let everyone knows how it goes. My approach this time is definitely with a lot more longer term goals in mind!

        If anyone has other useful tips they've found works for them for Amazon sites in particular, but anything else general I'd like to hear about it.
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        • Profile picture of the author nik0
          Banned
          Originally Posted by byau View Post

          Hi,
          It was definitely a great learning tool. And the fact that I've been hands off on my amazon websites to take care of other things (my new son! thanks for the congrats! and launching the new dance school) and they've still generated a small bit of income is encouraging.

          At this point it is almost.. well, do I go back and correct the old sites? Or do I go forward with the new one.

          Part of the learning process was definitely figuring out what happened to the old sites. You outlined it very well. A lot of it was improper backlinking in a lot of different ways, and the content itself actually was not at fault so much. So fixing the old sites would be starting all my backlinking from ground zero again which isn't a bad thing, I have the advantage that the sites are aged (and half of them are PR 1 too). And it would just be a matter of doing the blog posts twice a month plus utilizing some better backlink practices.

          I did decide to forego that and keep that in the back of my head as I work instead on building some better sites for the long term.

          Anyway, I'll keep this thread updated with the things I will do and let everyone knows how it goes. My approach this time is definitely with a lot more longer term goals in mind!

          If anyone has other useful tips they've found works for them for Amazon sites in particular, but anything else general I'd like to hear about it.
          I can tell you one thing, I would never start with Amazon sites if I didn't have the next 3 things:

          - a decent team of writers that can write for cheap, I wouldn't pay more then $4-$5/500 words or the costs would just get too high to make a decent enough ROI and limit each site to about 20-30 pages

          - a large enough private network of at least 100 sites

          - a few thousand dollar per month to spend on content for the sites and for the link building of course.

          Now you definitely won't hear me saying that these 3 above things are a must, but if you want to treat it from a business point of view instead of playing around a bit (like most people do) then those 3 points are in my opinion quite essential as it all has to do with the return on investment and with such thing as affiliate sites I would want to make my money back asap as it's very clear that Google has affiliate sites on their radar so you never know what the future brings.

          Doing it in such way I'm personally guaranteed to have made my investment per website back within 2-3 months. Investment of the network is not included in the calculation.

          The new Penguin 2.0 update is going to be very interesting as Google claims that this will be a large one so when my new setup sites survive that update then there is not too much too worry about really and then I would be prepared to invest more per site (as in build larger sites).
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          • Profile picture of the author dreamtoreality
            Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

            I can tell you one thing, I would never start with Amazon sites if I didn't have the next 3 things:

            - a decent team of writers that can write for cheap, I wouldn't pay more then $4-$5/500 words or the costs would just get too high to make a decent enough ROI and limit each site to about 20-30 pages

            - a large enough private network of at least 100 sites

            - a few thousand dollar per month to spend on content for the sites and for the link building of course.
            I think you're overstating these things a bit.

            - You can write the articles yourself. 4-5 a day and you have a 100 page website in a month. Choose the right niche, have a good conversion rate and you can make $1,000 per month in a couple of months.

            - I very much disagree with this. Purchase a few high PR domains, link to a few posts and flow PR to other posts on the site.

            Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

            it's very clear that Google has affiliate sites on their radar so you never know what the future brings.
            No one really knows what changes their updates will make to the SERPs. But if someone types in "Product Review", then it makes no sense for Google to penalise these sites. The searcher is losing out at the end of the day because they're not getting the information they're looking for, especially if you're targeting low competition terms and there are no reviews available.
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            • Profile picture of the author nik0
              Banned
              Originally Posted by dreamtoreality View Post

              I think you're overstating these things a bit.

              - You can write the articles yourself. 4-5 a day and you have a 100 page website in a month. Choose the right niche, have a good conversion rate and you can make $1,000 per month in a couple of months.

              - I very much disagree with this. Purchase a few high PR domains, link to a few posts and flow PR to other posts on the site.

              No one really knows what changes their updates will make to the SERPs. But if someone types in "Product Review", then it makes no sense for Google to penalise these sites. The searcher is losing out at the end of the day because they're not getting the information they're looking for, especially if you're targeting low competition terms and there are no reviews available.
              What I said is if you want to treat it from a business point of view. Writing 4-5 articles a day to reach $1k/month is not really that. As you can see from the things the OP wrote he doesn't sound to me like some hobbyist.

              Google has been quite actively after affiliate sites, and afaik that hasn't been based on keywords that people tried to rank for.

              What do you think is the best place to read a product review? At Amazon itself from people that bought the actual product, or a website that reviews the product that has most probably never ever touched the actual product and only writes a review that converts best for him. Sure you can say there are people that write it in the best interest of the people but most do not and Google has no way to see the difference between them.

              Anyway there are 10 spots on the first page so there will always be review sites popping up here and there but Google definitely looks different at affiliate sites opposed to real business websites like the actual brands and the larger ecommerce sites like Amazon itself.

              Besides that I said that I would never start affiliate sites without a decent sized network and a good team of writers. For people that don't have those things can start it in your suggested way but this advice was tailored towards the OP and not towards the average visitor of this forum.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    BTW, you guys creating all these Amazon review sites are pushing your luck with future Google algos. After Google gets tired of all the masses targeting the keyword review with doorway pages, they'll end up shutting you all down.

    It's not complicated to target two things for a Google algo. update:
    1. The keyword review in the page title
    2. An Amazon affliate link on the page

    There's legit ways to monetize Amazon & I seriously doubt that's happening here. A fake review is crap & Google usually deals with crap sooner or later.

    Good luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author dreamtoreality
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      BTW, you guys creating all these Amazon review sites are pushing your luck with future Google algos. After Google gets tired of all the masses targeting the keyword review with doorway pages, they'll end up shutting you all down.

      It's not complicated to target two things for a Google algo. update:
      1. The keyword review in the page title
      2. An Amazon affliate link on the page

      There's legit ways to monetize Amazon & I seriously doubt that's happening here. A fake review is crap & Google usually deals with crap sooner or later.

      Good luck.
      I agree with you, Yukon, but what about legit sites that help users? How would Google differentiate between the two?
      Something along the lines of Consumer Search. They've never used the product but give users all the information they want in one place.

      Anyway, I think I'm going to stop Amazon sites for the time being. I'm at the stage where I've built a few sites bringing in a decent income, and will now diversify. Really not comfortable with the idea of Google updates, putting all my eggs in one basket and constantly maintaining the sites anymore. I got into IM because a 9-5 was the last thing I ever wanted to do, but in a way this is worse. Full control is key for long term passive income.

      I've been toying with the idea of an authority site for awhile now but will probably get started on keyword research for a real authority site this week. Then mainly drive traffic from forums and some from Google... a real long term passive income website.

      My only issue is with monetization. What would you suggest, Yukon? I take it that Adsense is best to get the ball rolling and then perhaps look to sell ad space and promote other people's products.
      Also, could you point me in the direction of an authority site model? Although, I suppose that it's common sense. Excellent keyword research (More to do with CPC if traffic is from forums)>Great content>Excellent structure>Promote website>Profit.
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      BTW, you guys creating all these Amazon review sites are pushing your luck with future Google algos. After Google gets tired of all the masses targeting the keyword review with doorway pages, they'll end up shutting you all down.

      It's not complicated to target two things for a Google algo. update:
      1. The keyword review in the page title
      2. An Amazon affliate link on the page

      There's legit ways to monetize Amazon & I seriously doubt that's happening here. A fake review is crap & Google usually deals with crap sooner or later.

      Good luck.
      It's true that most of the large review sites don't focus on the actual kw review, mostly they focus on "the best electric lawn mowers" and things like that, and have a ton of surrounding content that aren't even reviews.

      That approach obvious takes a lot more effort and "spilled" money on surrounding content as it's not directly targeting keywords.

      Exactly the reason why I'm a bit cautious with my review sites as I really don't feel like putting a ton of work in each single site. I am just the type of guy who likes to automate it as much as possible, not with software but with VA's and such who you really need to give an outlined plan explained step by step and once they know that trick it's ok.
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      • Profile picture of the author xdarata
        Always provide the link back support and update content related the keywords that we targeted. But, we should always do it consistently until the position of our keyword is so strong so that it is not easy to change again.
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  • Profile picture of the author distantship
    Diversifying anchors is definitely the wisest move.

    In addition to what have already addressed about content, you might want to get more relevant and quality backlinks to your niches. (By quality I mean authority) Random fiverr gig is not going to make it for the up keep.
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