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Questions and Answers from Twitter (August 2022)
From time-to-time I open up the Substack to questions from my Twitter audience. If you missed this Q&A, make sure to follow me on bird app so you can ask during the next iteration.
Are there any easy tools to "mass" adapt images for articles so Google sees them as new?
No, there’s nothing like this available. You have to edit them all manually using a tool like Canva. You can read my guide on how to make images look unique to Google here.
I'd be interested in how you'd approach SEO/biz during a recession/depression vs previous boom times. Any changes in tactics, goals, niche selection?
You should let go of your worst performers if you have employees/VAs and cancel any recurring software subscriptions that you aren’t getting much value out of.
SEO-wise nothing changes. You’re still going to make money if you’re #1 for lucrative queries.
The only thing that really changes is your niche selection if launching a new site. Products that are random stupid trends (especially if they’re backed by VCs) aren’t going to last.
Is there a rough number of daily visits to a website where you think running ads on the site makes sense?
You should put ads on your site as soon as you get to the minimum traffic level where can get approved for one of the ad networks.
I recommend only putting display ads on informational content. If you put them on money content you’ll distract from affiliate conversions.
If you used paid ads for an initial traffic boost, but now you’re getting decent traffic from organic SEO, should you cancel your ad spend?
If you’re making more than you’re spending then you should keep spending.
If you’re spending $3k/month on ads and that leads to you making $3,001 or more than you should ramp it up until it stops being profitable.
For D2C brands, how long does it take to start getting organic traffic if posting new content every week? What timelines should I expect?
If you’re asking this then you’re already NGMI.
It’s the Iron Rule of Wifi Money: Anyone who asks “how long will it take” is never going to make it.
About to hit critical mass from a content perspective on site. Looking to revamp design. Any authority sites to emulate for design concepts? Seems like veterans in the SEO industry have a good idea of the wireframe / design approach for their new sites.
You can emulate any site that you like the look of.
One thing that I’ll say is that appearance definitely matters. Lots of WiFi money people say things like “ugly sites convert better”.
This is pure cope.
Affiliate marketing attracts VERY strange people who are very analytical and not very aesthetic (hardcore nerds). Since they don’t get it, and since it’s still possible to make a lot of money without worrying about it, they claim it “doesn’t matter”.
Good luck getting universities and major media outlets to link to your janky site that looks like Geocities circa 2002. Most customers will look down on your site as well if it looks like shit.
As far as advice goes, bookmark sites that you like the design of any time you come across them while surfing online (even if you don’t know why you like it). Eventually you’ll have a solid base of sites that you can take different elements from to make your own.
Unclear how SEOs use their own portfolio of sites to internally increase performance. I.e. Are they just linking across their portfolio to share link juice and artificially increase DA?
When you launch a new site add one editorial link in each of your existing sites to the homepage of the new one for an initial boost.
The old-fashioned PBN approach is a great way to get your site nuked.
Artificially increasing your DA is pointless unless you’re planning to run a guest post farm. DA/DR scores aren’t official metrics used by Google and don’t actually mean anything. They’re only an estimate at best, and you still have to double-check the site’s backlink profile to make sure they aren’t artificially pumping the score.
What are the different levels of affiliate marketing companies, and what challenges need to be overcome to get to the next level? As in how how does a business go from one person to a NerdWallet?
Step one: Solopreneur
Step two: Hiring a writer
Step three: Hiring more writers
Step four: Hiring/promoting an editor to manage the writers
Step five: Hiring a site manager/project manager/whatever title you want to give them to manage the site
Step six: Launch a new site and go through the steps again (much faster each iteration)
As far as getting to Nerdwallet status, I have no idea. I have no desire to ever go public.
What are dirty tricks affiliate marketers use on competitors and how to avoid them? (I.e., spammy backlinks)?
Buying spam links (casinos, porn, shitty UGC comment links, etc.)
Paying one of your writers to insert a link behind your back
Filing false copyright complaints
Hacking and adding random redirects/deindexing/causing chaos
Sending bots to your site to increase your bounce rate
Negative reviews on business listings (Google My Business etc.)
Most hacks can be avoided by frequently changing your password and revoking access from users who don’t need access to your site anymore (former writers, devs, etc.).
Spammy backlinks usually can be ignored, because Google is getting good at detecting them. If you notice a negative effect you can disavow them in Search Console. For bots you can block the IP address associated with them by contacting your hosting provider.
How do you determine which pages of your site to build links to?
Keywords that you’re ranking on page 2 or the bottom of page 1 for are good candidates for a link-building campaign.
It won’t work if you only build links to the target page. You need to build links to all the pages in that particular topical cluster.
If you have an article titled “best winter tents for camping” that’s ranking say #12, you would build links to it and any supporting articles.
If the cluster had articles like:
best winter tents for camping
how to insulate a tent
how to heat a tent without electricity
how to stay warm in a tent
best cold weather tent with stove
Then you should send a few links to the main one you’re trying to promote and also send at least one link to all the others (anything linked to it that’s related to tents and cold weather).
If one keeps going with their website, is it possible for niche sites to provide services, make money through affiliate links, and even maybe sell products all on one site?
I have sites where I sell e-commerce products. I’ve seen tons of different service businesses monetize their sites with affiliate content as well.
You’re never locked into one business model. I recommend starting with affiliate at first (unless you have a burning passion/skill that would lend towards another type of biz), then once you get a little bit of success you can branch out into selling products. It’s not necessary, but it’s a good way to diversify your revenue.
Is it acceptable to make sites with Divi/WordPress and then duplicate the same site into other localized regions? And then, recycle the same content from one site to another by only changing some small details like location. Any Google penalty for doing this?
If you’re talking about scraping the English content to another English article and just changing the location, then that’s not going to work. It’s fine if some small elements on the page don’t change (how we rate x product, etc.), but the bulk of the content has to be unique.
But there are plugins that will automatically translate your site into other languages that work fairly well.
I’ve been doing this for a while and haven’t run into any issues. I recommend setting them up on separate subdomains instead of the main one to avoid any potential indexing/crawl budget issues on your main English site.
What’s the step-by-step process for writing an article if you where doing it yourself?
The big steps are:
Create outline (subheadings)
Write the content in Surfer SEO
Create/edit images in Canva
Upload to WordPress
Add internal links to other articles in the same silo
Publish and submit to Search Console
Obviously there are many smaller steps that make up each of the major ones.
The following articles should help:
That’s all the questions I have for today. If I missed any make sure to ask again during the next Q&A session on Twitter.
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