[Journey] Building a Large Authority Site by 2024

Mr. Blackhat

Regular Member
Mar 25, 2019
200
215
Hey guys! I already have a few smaller websites up and running but wanted to start something big, and mostly hands-free. The website is a few months old by now, started on November 1st, 2022, but wanted to get some content up before making this journey thread.

Let's start with the FAQ since people always seem to miss them and keep asking the same questions.

Where do I get my articles?

I use a well-known agency for all my articles. Most articles are outsourced, and I pay $25/1000 words. However, I'm not very satisfied with the quality of some of the writers, will try some other content agencies as well in this journey. I might try hiring my own writers as soon as the website starts bringing in some steady cashflow.

Am I building backlinks?

Not yet, I will start with low-competition keywords and no link-building. Later on in the journey, I will start targeting medium to high-competition keywords and send them some guest posts and other powerful links. Probably in the second half of 2023.

Fresh or aged domain?

I'm using a fresh domain, no history, 2-word .com domain. I want as few reasons as possible for Google to hit me in any future updates.

What's the niche? Can you share your domain?

The niche is fairly broad, as I want to build a massive website. The closest I can give away is 'Home and Garden'. And no, I will not disclose my URL.

How will I monetize the site?

Until I reach a reasonable amount of monthly visitors I will mainly monetize with affiliate products. I want to use Amazon mainly but also one niche-specific affiliate network for each category. I've seen some crazy numbers from other sites that utilized smaller affiliate networks in this niche. Later I will go for Ezoic and then Mediavine. The content, however, is not affiliate-focused. I will strive for a ratio of 90/10 info and affiliate articles.

Now on to the journey!

As I mentioned, the website is about two months old as of now. I already have 63 articles (currently editing 9 more so in a few days there will be 72), all indexed and optimized for on-page. My goal is to increase the total number of articles to 600+ by January 2024.

I have a day job, as well as some chump change coming in from other websites. As I don't want to write everything myself I am going to outsource most of the articles.

My budget? Well, up until may I will have about 30-35 articles written per month. June and forward I will have more funds available and try to push for 50 articles each month. I will try to average 40+ articles per month throughout the year.

I know SEO is slow, especially for a fresh domain with no authority. But, I hope by the end of the year the articles will start bringing in some revenue that can be reinvested into more content. Ideally, I would like to push for 700+ articles but that may be a stretch.

This is my original plan but it might change over the course of the year.


November 2022

This website was started on November 1st. The Google spam update from October was fresh on my mind and I was worried my new website would have trouble indexing (as many people had reported around that time). Fortunately, as soon as I had 30 articles up and running and submitted my sitemap to GSC, the articles started indexing within hours.

Not much happened in November, as I mostly focused on doing keyword research and ordering the content. I ordered and uploaded a total of 40 articles in the month of November.


December 2022

At the beginning of December, the website started ranking top 3 for a bunch of keywords but the Google dance was keeping the rankings from sticking. There were a few clicks every day on Google which held my hopes up, and it continued growing.

In December I ordered another batch of 32 articles, bringing my total to 73 articles. These are all articles in the same sub-niche, as I don't want to spread myself too thin. It's all about topical authority, trying to get at least 100 posts per category before moving on to the next one.

Here are the stats for November and December:

Google Analytics (I'm still using Universal Analytics, as I really have no idea how GA4 works. I seem to get different stats from the two, not sure what that's all about. Will probably just start using a 3rd party tool for tracking my visitors.)

ga-nov-dec.png

Google Search Console

gsc-nov-dec.png

As you can see, not much is happening just yet. I'm eager to see what will happen in the coming months with more articles.

I'm currently tracking my keywords with SERPRobot, but will probably switch in the near future. Here are the stats as of January 1st:

serprobot-nov-dec.png


Goals for this month
  • I put in a lot of extra hours at work in December, so I will try to order around 60 new articles, bringing the total to 130 articles.
  • Would also like to see some steady traffic (even if not much) as the website is closing in on 3 months.
  • Buy keyword research. I want to try out some keyword research packages from here and will target a new sub-niche/category for these keywords. Keyword research is so time-consuming and as I mentioned in the beginning I want to build this website as hands-free as possible.
That's pretty much where I am at today. As I'm ordering articles in bulk every month I won't have a lot of news to update about during the weeks. However, I'm sure there will be some sporadic weekly updates as well, as some traffic and sales start to roll in.

Goals for this journey

In April the website will be 6 months old and have 250 articles. I'm hopeful that by this summer the website will get 5k+ sessions per month with some income from Ezoic and Amazon.

The goal for January 2024 is to reach 600+ articles and 50k sessions per month. I would love to have some income during Q3 and Q4 of 2023 to reinvest in articles and backlinks, bringing the total amount of articles closer to 700.

By 2024 I will have invested somewhere around $15k, which means I need it to be valued at $15k+. To achieve this the website will need to generate around $400-500/month. However, I'm sure the website will be able to do more than that if everything goes as planned.

Sometime in mid-late 2024 I want to sell the website. My hopes are that the website will be generating at least $1k/month so I can sell it for $30k+.

I will update once a month and try to do some updates in between if something major happens.

Stats

Articles: 63 (+ another 9 being uploaded in a few days)
Page views in November: 65
Page views in December: 130 (+100%)

Current Investments

Hosting: $250 (Paid for the whole year, VPX hosting)
Content: $1730
Total: $1980
 
This looks good. Following the journey.
 
Any specific reason for that
Well with 10% affiliate I mean pure review or best of posts. The reason is that Google doesn't really like this type of content, and I want to keep it to a minimum. It's probably fine to have 20% affiliate content as well but I don't want to take any unnecessary risks with this project. These types of keywords are often medium volume with low competition, so I don't want to pass them up completely. I will, however, insert affiliate links in some of my info posts, but only in the text where it fits naturally.
This looks good. Following the journey.
Amazing, wish you luck!
Good luck bro
Thanks guys!
 
Minor update

Yesterday I had my first day with 10 visitors. I know that's not a lot, but it's a sign things are going the right direction at least. The rankings are slowly improving as well. I'm not going to make a big update with stats and pictures the first few weeks as there's not much difference.

As I mentioned before I'm not very satisfied with the quality of some writers at the content agency I'm ordering from. The last batch had some delays and one writer who previously delivered good articles now delivered lower quality, which means I had to edit a lot. Another writer also moved up to the more expensive tier.

In January I will try some other agencies. Found one here on BHW which looks good. Their samples look even better than most of the articles I've gotten from the current one and their prices are slightly lower, win win. Will try them out and see if they are any good. I might be able to push 140 articles total this month, due to their rate being lower.

I'm not going to disclose the agency just yet, as I don't know how good they are.
 
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Great journey. I'm just setting up my first affiliate narrow-niche site and plan to make a broader niche authority site like yours using the cash coming in. Following your journey.
 
Another minor update

Hey guys! Just wanted to do a small update to the journey, just to show I'm dedicated and not going to bail on you guys.

January is coming to a close, and the website will soon turn 3 months old. the rankings are improving every day, some of the newer articles are still dancing but have had placements in the top 10 multiple times already.

Last week I had a 2-hour long job interview for a new position at the company. I'm sure they will pick me as I got along very well with the new boss. This would be a game changer for me and result in a €1000 monthly raise, as well as better work hours and no work on weekends. They should get back to me in early February, and if all goes well I will be changing jobs in April.

Today I have finalized almost all the keywords for the next order, manually checking SERP and selecting only the best keywords. I will initially order 48 articles which will make the total article count 120. I also want to order a keyword research BST from the forum, 10 more articles will come out of those keywords, making the total 130.

I will build three categories with the current content. When they are all filled up with high-quality articles and properly interlinked, I will add more categories.

  • Category 1 will have 82 total articles (Will add more later, as I want to make high-quality affiliate content for the last 18 articles)
  • Category 2 will have 27 articles (This category/niche has a lot of potential, low-competition keywords with medium-high volume)
  • Category 3 will have 11 articles

All categories will eventually have 100 articles each. I will order the keyword package for category 3 and add another 10 articles before February.

Traffic is on a slow but steady growth, it should grow 100%+ from last month. Will give a more detailed update with stats some day next week.

Your plan is extremely solid, if you stick to this plan, you will actually be able to build a large authority site. I'm following, all the best.
Thanks. Yes, that's the plan. Being consistent and uploading large amounts of quality articles over a year's time. We'll see how it turns out in the end but I'm confident it will be a success.
 
Bro, you can't build a large authority site with 40 articles per month, it will take you 10 years, maybe a small one.
Well, It's not like I am trying to build the next techcrunch, but I'm also not building a niche site. My goal is to eventually reach 1000+ articles. Sure, large authority site is probably not the correct word for it.
 
3 Month Update

Hey guys! So, the website turned 3 months last week, and it's growing steadily. This is probably the best growth I've seen this early on in a fresh domain. Last month did not exactly go as planned, I was not able to reach my goal of 120 total articles.

January was a stressful month with job interviews and a hectic schedule at work. Unfortunately, our car broke down and needed repairs so I was not able to invest as much into content as I had hoped. Will try to get back on track in the coming months, ordering a few more articles per month to make up for the loss in January.

Content

As I mentioned earlier, I wanted to try new writers. The quality is amazing, however, the TAT is killing me... It takes forever to get my articles, but for the price and the quality, I guess it's worth the wait. I might try another one in February as well, not sure yet. I managed to order 31 articles last month for a total of 103 articles. My goal was to have a total of 120 articles by now, but it's not the end of the world!

Traffic

Google Analytics and GSC are looking better every day. I can see some consistency in terms of daily traffic, so I'm happy with that. 10+ visitors per day with a few odd days bringing in 20+ visitors.

Comparing the previous months, as well as some older projects that took forever to take off, I would consider this a very successful start. Can't wait to see what will happen this month in terms of traffic.

Here's the Google Search Console for the past 3 months:

gsc-nov-jan.jpg

And this is what Google Analytics looks like:

analytics-oct-jan.jpg

analytics-jan.jpg

And finally, here are the current rankings according to SERPRobot. I did lose some rankings the past week, but it should bounce back eventually.

serprobot-jan.jpg

Monetization

I have still not begun to monetize the site. However, I will soon start adding affiliate links to most articles. I really don't want to put Adsense on the website, will wait until I have more traffic and join Ezoic or Monumetric instead. I'm confident affiliate sales will start showing until the next update, even if it's only a couple $.

Keyword Research

As I mentioned in the previous update I wanted to try and outsource the keyword research process. After trying a few providers I did not like any of them, so I will have to do my own keyword research. Might try another service later on but for now, I will just have to sacrifice my time and do the tedious work myself.

Going Forward

I will keep updating this journey every month. My goal is to upload as many articles as possible, but you never know what happens, life has a funny way of messing with you.

If I get the new job I will be able to order more articles and grow the website even faster. I should hear back from them in about two weeks, will keep you posted.

In May the website will be 6 months old, if the traffic keeps increasing like this I should be able to monetize with ads and have some extra income to push more content. This summer I'm expecting massive growth, as soon as the website ages past the 7-8 months mark, but I don't want to plan too far ahead.

Looking at the analytics for February thus far, it's looking good! Have had a few days with 30 visitors, and it would be nice to reach my first 50 visitors in a day this month.

Stats
Articles: 103 (wanted to reach 120 by now)
Page views January: 381 (+293%)

Current Investments
Hosting: $250
Content: $2060
Keyword research: $80
Total: $2390
 
I started similar project mid Dec 2022. So far, I have 97 articles and the same results in terms of GSC. Good luck and let's wait till the end of May :)
 
I started similar project mid Dec 2022. So far, I have 97 articles and the same results in terms of GSC. Good luck and let's wait till the end of May :)
That's great! Let's see where the following 6 months takes us. Are you writing your own content or are you outsourcing?
 
Great idea and looking forward for your update. Let's hope for the best. Good Luck
 
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