Building an Authority Site: Update 2

Ok so it's been about a month since the last update, which I guess means another one is due.

What I Did in April

7NDMKC6NH8You know how you set out to do so much… anyway enough excuses.  I did manage to build the website.  As I mentioned when I announced the project, I'm using a custom built CMS.  Instead of going with WordPress I've built at a custom php website.  Obviously I wouldn't recommend even thinking about going down this route unless you're a) a good coder and b) have a good reason. I wanted complete control over the site.  Not just the look.  But how users interact with the content.  So I custom built.

The build process took longer then I had expected.  But that's ok.

The site is now live albeit it without any content.

What I'm Doing in May

Gonna knuckle down and create the content.  As a bit of a challenge I came up with 100 blog post ideas that I can use on the site.   Once you get on a roll, coming up with ideas, it's actually not that difficult.  It's a great thought exercise.  Give it a go.

My target is 20 posts for the month of May.  Let's see if I can make it.

Revenue, Traffic?

No point in even reporting until I get the content up.  I'm not aiming to make revenue until month 3 at the very earliest.


Building an Authority Site: Update 1

In the beginning.

I already own an authority site, it makes anywhere between $700-$3000 a month.  Not a huge amount but this site is completely passive.   I mean, completely.   I do absolutely nothing.  I don't build links, I don't post content, I don't promote it.  It goes to show if you find the right niche, put up the right content, and promote something that will bring you $$$$ instead of $, passive income is possible.

And now I want to do it again.

I'm going for something a little less passive this time, I'm wanting to create a site in the mens fashion/lifestyle niche.  There are lots of sites out there with good content, but I still believe there is room for one more;).

The Domain

I'm going to reuse an old domain of mine.    At the moment it gets around 100 visits a day.  It's a bit of a risk because basically those visitors will go, and i'll be starting from scratch.  But the domain currently makes no money.  I don't like having domains sitting around, costing a yearly registration, without them at least generating enough to pay for themselves.    Sometimes you need to take a chance.  I plan on doing that.

The Website

I won't be using wordpress.  Instead I'm using a custom built publishing platform.  It's built in PHP.  Why?  Well I hate with a passion the templating system in wordpress.  In fact I kind of hate wordpress.  It feels like something from last decade (which obviously it is) but it hasn't kept with the times.  So I've built out a new platform.  It's what publishing should be in 2015.    I'll optimize it over time, tweaking bits and pieces to make sure it's perfect – thats why building your own software is awesome – you can keep changing it, iterating, until you reach your goals.  With wordpress it's limited in scope.  You can only do so much.

The Content

I'll probably create most of it myself to begin with.  That way I can set the tone and quality.  I specialise in high, high quality content.  Better content that can be written by the cheap articles writers.  It's how  I compete.  You'd need to pay someone around $100 an article to get similar quality – and if you do that the economics just won't work.

I'm aiming for 20 posts in April.  That's a goal I've set.  Each post will be around 1k in length and have lots of images.

The Promotion

The good thing about using an existing domain of mine, is that it comes with a twitter account with followers.  Sure they aren't in the right niche, but just having a few hundred followers to begin with lends some authority.  The promotion I'll be doing is posting on Twitter and Facebook.  And I'll expect very little traffic from it.  I'm looking for organic growth and expect most of the traffic will come from Google.  And that traffic won't exist for possibly the first 3 or 4 months.  I need to be patient.

I'm not going to build backlinks.  I don't believe you need to anymore.  Content is king.

The Money

You can't make money without traffic.  So I don't expect anything within 3 months.  After that I'm going to be targeting affiliate offers.  I have quite a good strategy in place for my other sites, and i'll use the same thing.

So lets get building….

So far I've built the site, I just need to design the logo, put it online, and start adding content.  I'm only writing these updates to keep myself accountable.  I'll try and check in every few days.  And yes, i'll share every traffic detail as well as full revenue breakdowns.


Four Things That will Improve Your Life and Income in 2015

Here are 3 things you should be doing in 2015 if you want to improve the amount of cash you make.  These are simple, almost obvious ideas, but the reality is, so many people keep chasing ideas.  Searching out new information (come on, how did you find this blog post!!), without just putting their heads down and working.

Build a Website.  One Website. And stick with it.

You don't need to build 10 different websites.  Start with one.  If it isn't making at least $100 a month (which, come on, is nothing!), a new website ain't gonna help.  Time.  That is what it takes to make money.  And you have to focus that time on the one project.  Even if you start out with a shitty site, if you improve it a tiny bit each day, in 10 years time, you'll have a behemoth.  If you give in after 6 months.  You will have nothing.

Build a personal blog and post to it each day.  Build an advice site and share knowledge.  Build a review site, and review all the things you genuinely find cool.

Example – Many, many years ago, I built a site about a travel product.  I loved this product so much so that I reviewed all the different brands.  Of course, I linked to amazon to get a commission each time someone clicked through.  And now, well 8 years later, I'm still getting an amazon gift card each month and I don't have to pay for books anymore.  Any book I want – it's free.  I make sure the site is online, I make sure the site is usable by making sure it's design is good and current.  I make sure there are no broken links and occasionally I post new content.  The lesson here is that I didn't sell the site as soon as it make a $.  I stuck with it and it paid dividends.

Start Investing.  Stop Saving

I can't stand the personal finance bloggers who live by the gospel according to budgeting.  Chapter 1, verse 2: though shall live a miserable life, pinching every penny and saving every cent in order to live a miserable retirement.

Stop!  I have a HISA.  But I use the money in that account, not to save for tomorrow, whenever tomorrow might be…. some distant time.  I save for two things – a) to buy shit (which isn't very much as I prefer to buy a few very good items rather then lots of crap. And b) investments.  By investments are usually websites.  And if I'm not buying websites I'm usually trading.

The point is I'm giving myself a shot.  If you only buy stocks.  Or only save in a bank account.  You are limiting your possible returns.  You might make 15% in a killer year by investing in stocks.  You might make 1000%+ in a year buy creating shit like websites or building a startup.   Give yourself a chance.

Focus on Creating.

Build something.  If you're good at design, create logos, banners, websites etc.  give them away for free.  If you can write code, create jquery plugins, or ios components and make them open source.  If you're good at writing, create copy content and let people use it.  Get the idea.  Just start creating, creating and creating some more.  There will come a point where you just go – fuck – I can sell this, and you'll do that.  Try not to worry to much about the business model right away.  Just focus on creating for now and the rest will follow.

Stop Buying So Much Shit

Last year I probably bought too much stuff.  The problem is I discovered Mr Porter and they do a great job selling me stuff.  Damn you. But I am actually buying less stuff I don't need and more quality stuff that I actually enjoy.  Anyway, I think this is something we can all work at improving at – stop buying shit we don't need.

My buying habits have changed a bit over the past 12 months.  Instead of just go for a spray and pray approach – thinking that if I buy 10 cheap shirts, one of them will end up being good – I've started being more careful.  Sure, i'm now dropping $500 on a shirt, but I've researched this shirt, I've know the quality, I know the cut.  I know what I'll wear it with and I know it will last.  And when I put it on, I'll look good and feel good.   And I apply this approach to everything I buy – making sure it is the best for me, it will last  and be quality.


PopCash is still a Great Source of Revenue for Me

A quick update on PopCash – the popup advertising network that I've been using.  I've written about how I made over $2.5k using popcash and I wanted to give an update on how things have been progressing.

The good news is, that I'm still seeing regular cash payments from popcash.  They haven't been late paying out.  Not once.  Earnings from popcash aren't huge, and you will need an appropriate website that has lots of traffic, and where the visitors won't mind this type of advertising.  But if you do have that type of website, then I can't recommend PopCash enough.

Slow and Steady

Time.  It's the number one money maker.  I wish I had more of it.  But unfortunately everyday you're only given a certain amount and you can't fast forward or rewind, it just goes on at the same rate.

I can't count the number the times I've been impatient and when an idea doesn't work right away, I simply sell out and move onto something new.  This jump and run approach rarely works.  What works is working at the same idea, day in day out.  Sure it might evolve and change but it's not the same as selling out and moving on.

I see some people posting their IM journey's on BHW – they are super motivated for a day or two and then things wane, they realise they are doing an incredible amount of work for very little cash.  Usually just cents.  And they give it up.  Morons.

It takes time.

I have a single affiliate offer that made me over 1.3k last month.  Do you know how much work I did to promote that offer?  None.  I did nothing.  I was busy doing other stuff.  But it still brought in the cash.  Why?  Because I posted that offer on a site that is over 10 years old.  10 years!  I started it when I was a young boy and just held onto it.  That website, has hundreds of posts, all of high quality and i've done no backlink building or any SEO.  I just kept building it.  Year after year.  And as a result Google fucking loves it.

If you're building a Private blog network or any other scammy type of “system” it's going to fail in the long run.  You will have spent all this time, and now your investment is worth absolutely nothing.  You can't even sell it – who the hell would buy a website that uses a PBN these days?    However if you had spent that time just building a website, on a topic you loved, and didn't worry about SEO, you would have at least had an asset that could be sold.  Maybe not for very much at the moment, but imagine if you kept at it for 10 years.  Imagine how much it will be worth then.

When it comes to making money online there are no secrets, no systems.  Just time.  That's all there is to it.  Just be patient and keep going.  A little bit each day.

it works.

Three Better Alternatives to Hostgator

I used to use Hostgator for a number of small sites I built. But over recent months, I've noticed a decline in the quality of the service. So here's a roundup of some alternatvies to Hostgator.

The Cheap Option – Bluehost

I've heard good things about bluehost. They recently went through a major transformation and their service has improved dramatically. It's probably the best cheap option out there.

The Premium Option – MediaTemple

A favorite of designers. Mediatemple offers premium shared hosting. Unlike Hostgator or Bluehost (or any other shared host), mediatemple has grid hosting which puts your site on a grid of servers with burstable resources. What this means? Your site won't go down if you go viral.

Mediatemple is reliable – I host this website on Mediatemple and love the product. Customer service is top notch. You pay a premium, but if you're looking for no hassle hosting with powerful features, this is for you.

The DIY Option – DigitalOcean

Want complete control? Then a VPS (virtual private server) is for you. Digital Ocean provides the cheapest and fastest cloud servers out there. They start at just $5 per month. Digital Ocean has by far the best tutorials and help section, so even a novice can setup a server. Plus, they even offer 1 click wordpress install. Running your own server takes a little extra work – you'll need to install any updates, and if something goes wrong you'll need to figure it out.

PopCash Review: How I Made Over $2.5k

PopCash is a popunder advertising network that I've been using for the last little while to monetize some of the sites I own.  I wanted to share my experiences of using PopCash and how much I've been earning.

PopCash earnings

I don't use PopCash on all the websites I own.  For example, it wouldn't do well on a site like this.  But for say, entertainment sites, it would do really well.  One thing you need to know about popunder ads – you need to have a lot of traffic.  Luckily I do on some of my sites!

Approval and Setup

PopCash is by far the most responsive ad network i've come across.  I've never needed to contact support (because I've never had any issues) but they are extremely speedy when it comes to getting your domain approved.  Usually it takes just a couple of hours (if at all).  This means you can get started placing ads right away.

Ad Rates 

PopCash uses a dynamic bidding system.  Basically there is no set rate for your traffic.  It varies based on the location of your traffic and the quality.  It will fluctuate for day to day and depends obviously on advertiser demand.    I received around $2 for U.S traffic.  Some  days it is higher, some days it is lower.

I've tested PopCash against another popular popunder network and found that popcash pays around 20% more.  So far for my website, I have yet to find a monetization method that pays as well.


PopCash does pay and they always pay on time.  They say payouts happen within 7 days, but most of the time I receive my payout on the same day.  The minimum is just $10 and you don't need to wait 30 days or more.  You can cash out as soon as your account hits that amount.

You can request payouts to PayPal, Paxum or Payza.

In Conclusion…

If you have a website with lots of traffic and it's in the right niche (entertainment, wallpapers etc) then you should definitely try popcash.  Monetizing via other methods on these types of sites just don't make you as much cash.  PopCash is by far the best popunder network I've come across – they have the best rates in the industry, super fast payouts and a great backend.

You can join popcash here

6 Things You Should Know About Blogging in 2014

Blogging in 2014

1) Long Form Content is Still King

Google is still showing extra love to long form content. Google has even create a special section on Google Search for long articles. This means that your word count really does matter. Longer articles, with content that people actually want to share is what's going to rank best on Google. Therefore, it's probably a better strategy to create fewer longer articles, then pumping out short form content on a regular basis. However…

2) Google Loves New Content

Recent algorithm changes on Google will push older content down in favour of newer articles, even if the newer article is of lesser quality. Now while I don't personally believe this is good news, this is the reality. If you want to see continuous growth then you are going to have to continuously blog. Your older articles will continue to get traffic but not at the same ratio as newer content.

3) Your Posts Should Contain Images

Facebook and Twitter now both allow images to be shown when you Tweet or post to FB. Facebook has even publicly announced that they favour posts that contain images. That means, if you post a link to facebook and it doesn't contain an image, hardly anyone is going to end up seeing it. Therefore, you must include images in every single blog post if you want to maximise sharing on Twitter and Facebook.

4) Google+ Is Become More Relevant

Although I don't believe it's necessary to build a large following on Google+, it is now essential for a blogger to create a profile on Google+. Doing so, will enable your avatar to be shown next to Google search results, which does increase click through rates. Goolge+ may also factor into the search rankings and pages that have been shared on Google+ may rank higher in the future.

5) It's Important to Own Your Own Blog

We've seen a lot of new platforms in 2013 for blogging. Tumblr took off big time, Medium was born and boutique blogging tools such as Ghost were built. In five years time, many of these platforms will no longer exist. They will have been bought and sold or shut down. And your content, your hard earned marketing efforts will all have disappeared. If you seriously want to build a long term income and consistent traffic, then you have to own your own blog. While everyone else is bailing out to hosted platforms, you need to play it smart in 2014 and stick with your own self-hosted blog. In the long run it makes much more sense to place your content (which is extremely valuable) on an asset you own.

Remember, you can't sell a medium blog, but you can sell a self hosted wordpress blog. Who do you want to make money for? Yourself, or the founders or a blogging platform.

5) It's Going to Take Longer to See $$$ Returns

For new bloggers it's going to be harder to see returns on their work. It's much harder than it was a few years ago to rank well in Google. You can't just pump your content full of keywords and expect it to rank. That simply doesn't work. It now takes longer to build authority and your rankings. This doesn't mean you shouldn't start a blog in 2014. It just means that you can't expect to start earning money within a couple of months. The reality is that it may now take a year or more.

But the flip side is that once you have established an authority site, it will continue raking in the revenue and the revenue won't suddenly disappear like a niche site would.

6) SEO is Pretty Much Dead

Some people will tell you that you need to still build backlinks. If you're still building crappy backlinks then sooner or later Google will take action. There is no benefit to building backlinks for long term success. Concentrate instead on building a social following. In the future that is going to have even more value in search engine rankings.


February 2014 Passive Income Report

Last month I made over $1.9k from online methods, doing relatively little work.  Here is my earnings report for the month of February.  I was inspired by other bloggers who shared their income and so I'm doing the same.  This has been my best month yet.

Affiliate Income

Easy-Forex: $910.56
Media Temple: $80

Advertising Income

Adsense: $14.86
Popcash: $108

Forex Trading Income

eToro: $780.45
Easy-Forex: $47.52

Total Income: $1,941.39

As you can see Forex was the stand out performer.  Most of my income came from copy trading, where I followed the successful traders on eToro and automatically copied what they did.  The result worked out well!   I also used Easy-Forex to do manual trading.  I started with a $500 account there.

My adsense revenue took a massive decline.  I'll explain why in an upcoming post, where I show you how to make $60 a day from adsense using a viral technique, but it only lasts for a short time.

Day 1

Welcome to my blog.

Why Do I Need a Passive Income?

I like setting myself challenges.   And one of the challenges I have set myself is to create enough passive income to support myself.  Currently I'm living at home with my parents.  As much as I love them, this really does suck for a young guy like myself.  I want to get out there and start living.  It's time for me to grow up and be a man.  And a big part of this is earning an income.

One of my dreams is to be able to travel all over the world for an entire year or more.  I've done some travelling before, but I've always had to return home after a month or so because of money.

That's why a passive income would be awesome.

How Am I Going to Build my Income?

I'm going to be building 1-10 different websites.  They will each focus on having “viral” content.  The type of stuff you've seen on Reddit.  I recently came up with a method for getting a fairly reliable source of traffic and making a website go viral.

I can build a website within 24 hours and have it making $50 a day in adsense revenue within 2 days.  The tricky part is keeping this money flowing in.  So far, I've only been able to keep it going for a few days.  My challenge will be to make it more reliable and to go from one authority site to 10+.

I don't use any blackhat methods.  Everything is above board and legal.  I also don't rely on Google for traffic – I've been burned by Google sooooo many times I don't even bother with even 1 second of SEO work.  I know better ways to generate traffic.

Why Do I Need a Diary?

One big problem I have is motivation.  Often I start a project and just don't follow through.  I'm starting to get better with this.   My aim with this diary is to hold myself accountable.  I don't care if anybody reads it or not.  It's just here to remind me to get out of bed each day and start working.