It has been a few weeks since my last update on the Case Study on using new domains versus expired domains for brand new niche websites. I want to make sure that I provide updates that are meaningful where I have something compelling to share. (Or at least, slightly compelling…)
I finally have some data to share and it’s about the rankings. The preliminary results are kind of surprising!
More on that later…
Let’s cover some of the regular details.
All of the initial content has been written. That’s a pretty big accomplishment! Keep in mind that we are launching 4 sites total, 2 websites per niche.
If you recall, I had some pretty major setbacks with dealing with the writers. I had to fire a couple of them which was unfortunate.
Eventually, I arrived at the fact that I needed to raise my rates and pay the writers more money. I basically doubled my rates and the issues are gone with non responsive writers.
Lesson learned on that one!
For your reference, the rate that seems fair is about $20 per 1,000 words.
Website Set Up
All four of the websites are set up. That includes setting up the overall architecture for the site, privacy pages, about pages, disclaimers, and the general layout of the sites.
I also posted each piece of content, including the initial reviews.
I have NOT added any affiliate links yet. There is no real traffic to the sites yet to there is no real advantage to add affiliate links yet. Once a page hits the 2nd page, I will most likely go ahead and add some affiliate links to Amazon. Skipping this step for the time being is a pretty big time saver!
On Site Optimization
The content from the writers was pretty good… A couple of the writers must have learned some bad habits back in the day when keyword stuffing was a good thing.
I ended up with a few product reviews that really overused the keywords without any prompting from me. Let’s look at an example…
Let’s say I asked for an article titled, “Finding the best hamster wheel” then said, “write this naturally. Don’t worry about keywords at all. Just write freely.”
I received back an article that was 1,200 words total and the phrase “Best Hamster Wheel” would have been used 65 times. It was a little bit out of control.
It took quite a lot of time to edit the articles down to a more reasonable level of keyword usage. The good thing is that you only have to make those edits one time.
In the future, I will make sure to specify the maximum number of times to use a word.
I got around to ordering a HOTH Platinum package for this case study. (Here is an affiliate link to the HOTH.) I took advantage of the fact you can get links to multiple URLs…I mixed and matched my packages to reduce the overall costs.
I use the Platinum Package since it is the overall best value. The HOTH can help your rankings, mainly for not super competitive keywords. So, if you’re going niche is pay day loans then you will need more than just the HOTH.
Here is what I use the Platinum Package for… the base links to the each website.
I request consists of anchor text that is the naked URL, the brand name of the website, and generic phrases. For example, the anchor text will be:
We Love Hamsters
Check out this site
Later, when the time is right, I can use my PBN to get some great HIGH Authority backlinks using my targeted keywords. (I haven’t hit that stage yet but it’s coming up soon!)
Here is where is gets interesting!
I have never tracked rankings so early on in the life cycle of a niche website. It’s probably since I just started using SerpBook recently. (Here is the affiliate link if you are interested.)
All the graphs are directly from SerpBook. I have the system configured to send me an email each day so I can easily see how the sites are doing. I used to spend a decent amount of time on checking rankings and that’s a poor use of time. SerpBook has been a great move.
These rankings are without any backlinks. The HOTH package noted above is still in progress right now and still has a couple weeks to go before it is finished.
Yes, that’s right…these sites are showing up in the search engine results pages (SERP) with zero backlinks for the brand new domains. The expired domains have no new backlinks at this time.
I am tracking a small set of keywords ranging from not competitive to quite competitive. The search volume covers the full spectrum, too.[wpsharely id=”1658″]
Brand New Domain
The same applies for the keywords that we are tracking – ranging from not competitive to quite competitive and same with the search volume, too.[wpsharely id=”1658″]
Brand New Domain
The results are pretty cool. This is the kind of stuff I was hoping to discover!
As I mentioned above, the content is comparable from the new domain to the expired domains.
The word count is almost the same for each article.
The keyword density is almost the same too.
I’ve tried to remove all the factors other than the fact that one domain is brand new and the other is an expired domain.
There are no major issues with the case study right now. I am experiencing some time constraints.
As you can imagine, launching 4 sites all at the same time does take a little bit of time.
I will be focusing on Niche #1 primarily for a couple of weeks, especially since the rankings are little more favorable. That should help a little bit for the time constraints.
I like what I see so far with this case study. Niche #1 is less competitive over all with fewer searches and we can see that it is a little bit easier to rank in the top 200 off the bat.
Niche #2 is taking a little bit more time to rank, probably due to the increased competition.
The major thing is that we see a CLEAR impact from building a website on an expired domain. It’s amazing that you can actually see the difference in the rankings within a month.
The next steps here are to slowly add some high authority PBN links to the sites in Niche #1. Fully expect to see an direct impact from those links pretty quickly!