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The Websites I Bought: Current State Report And Action Plan To Increase Revenue

As you know I have recently bought two websites. Let’s look at their performance and what I plan to do to increase it. I have no idea how realistic my plan is… so, a part of the plan is to find it out! 🙂

I am sure it won’t be easy to achieve my ambitious goals, and it will require a lot of efforts.

But, as Kennedy said…

We choose to go to the moon in this decade, not because it's easy, but because it's hard - JFK Click To Tweet

So, let’s go to the moon!

Elephant🐘Website

This is the website I bought first – and it brings in the main part of my income. The monetizing is mostly done with AdSense with a bit of Amazone links.

Revenue

Here is the chart showing the revenue I am getting since the day I bought it (no numbers for December yet).

Website #1: Projected vs real revenue

As you can see, the website did not reach the expected revenue in the first month. There are two reasons for that. First, I did not have any Amazon revenue due to my problems with Amazon. Second, it was my start of working with AdSense as well, so the ads were running blank for a few days while my AdSense account was in the pre-approval state.

On top of that I suspect that after the ad units were changed from the seller’s ones to mine, Google needed some time to adjust the ads. This made the ads less efficient and the click-through rate lower than it should be.

The second month (November) was pretty good, and the real revenue exceeded the projected one. I did not do anything to increase it, so I think it happened because of the pre-Christmas season when everybody is in the buying (and clicking) mood.

You may ask how the projected revenue was calculated. I did it before buying the website to determine the fair price.

  • First of all, I took the top 5 keywords and calculated how much each of them brings in the revenue based on their shares of the total traffic.
  • Then I looked at the traffic volume of the previous year for each keyword per quarter (to simplify the calculation).
  • After that, I re-calculated the revenue based on theses numbers.
  • Since I used quarters rather than months, I divided the number by 3 to get the month income.

Here is the website revenue breakdown: Amazon vs AdSense.

Website #1: Revenue breakdown

As you can see, the Amazon portion is really small, 3.4% of the total revenue. I really like diversified sources of revenue (it makes my sleep better), so I plan to increase the Amazon part. Hopefully, I will increase up to 10% of the total revenue, so it would make about $66 or 3 times more than it is making now. At the same time, the AdSense revenue should not go down… and it should grow even more… I have already started working on this goal, and it seems quite ambitious and hard!

Goals

So, here are my goals, and the scope is 5-6 months.

  1. Increase the Amazon revenue up to 10% of the total revenue.
  2. Increase the AdSense revenue by 15%.

Action Plan

Since this is the major income bringing website, I want to spend more efforts on it.
Here is what I plan to do to achieve the goals:

  • First of all, introduce different Amazon tags for each product for easy tracking.
    This is how it was implemented by the previous owner. During the website migration, it was easier to replace all the tags by one, so the fine tracking level was lost. Now I am restoring it.
  • Add more Amazon links to the most popular pages.
    I have started doing it… and so far the results are a bit disappointing. But I do not want to jump to any conclusions now – there is not enough time passed since the beginning of the experiment.  I will write about it in future posts after I finish it.
  • Add more ad units to fine track the performance of each high traffic page.
  • Run Adsense experiments.
    This is a low hanging fruit which is also light on the side of the required work. I only needed to create an AdSense experiment, and the rest is taken care of by Google.
  • Add more content.
    The website has potential to rank for more keywords – and I already have a list!

Horse🐎Website

This is a small pure AdSense website – read about how I acquired it here. I bought it because I saw a potential in it. I think it is possible to grow the AdSense revenue and become an associate of a particular affiliate program.

Revenue

Here is the revenue of the website since the day I bought it (no numbers for December yet).

Website #2: Projected vs real revenue

For this website, I did not calculate the projected revenue myself. I simply took the numbers posted by the seller; he calculated them based on the average performance of the website during the three months before it put up for sell. It is quite possible that seasonal changes in the traffic may affect the revenue.

So, here are the goals and the action plan for the website.

Goals

The scope is 7-8 months. This website has less traffic than the first one, and it will take more time to run its experiments.

  1. Increase the AdSense revenue by 100%.
  2. Start getting a revenue from the affiliate program.

Action Plan

Here is how I plan to achieve it:

  • First of all, run Adsense experiments.
  • Test the AdSence ad unit placement.
  • Sign up for the affiliate program.
  • Find more keywords to rank for and add the content for the said keywords.
  • Start building some backlinks to increase ranking for the new keywords.

Goal Achieving Guidelines

I have already started working on my goals, and I have realized (or remembered) that I should follow some particular guidelines that will make my goal achieving life easier. I put them here for you – and for myself, so I would not forget them.

  • Before starting experimenting, assign different codes/names to each unit under experiment for easy result tracking.
    This includes Amazon tags and AdSense ad units.
  • Write down all actions that you do with a website.
    It will help to analyze what was done, what’s working, and what’s not, and roll back to the changes that did not work.
  • Change one setting at a time.
    If you change more than one thing, in the end of the experiment you would have hard time understanding which change exactly is responsible for the result.
  • Run the experiment / test for long enough time to avoid making precocious conclusions.
    Here is an A/B test sample calculator that may give some insights about the testing timeline. I still need to read more about it.
  • During the period of testing the revenue will drop – this is normal and should be expected

So, let’s stat doing it! I will share my results with you along the way. Stay tuned!

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