Web Publishing Notes October 2019

We’re a week into November and I’m only now publishing the web notes roundup for October. I actually had a Chrome window with various interesting blog posts that I had marked for reading, all sitting here waiting for this but guess what – I’ve been super busy.

Over the past 30 days, we have posted – wait for it – 296 posts across the sites. I don’t know how many sites you own or manage but for me, that is a LOT. Just as a point of reference, in October 2018 we published a total of 52 posts. And we considered that to be a good month back then!

If you read the last income report, you may remember that we’ve been shooting for publishing 150 posts per month. We’re at double the amount and that’s actually not such a great thing. Even with more editors and VA’s, that rate of production means a lot of work for poor ole me. Too much work. And that’s not something I want to continue with. The risk of burnout is just too high.

This isn’t just about how many hours per month I work. It’s about what I’m actually doing during these hours.

In the past few weeks, I was hyper-focused on production. I tried to push more topics into the pipeline, as fast as writers would write them. That meant a lot of search analysis and content planning. It also meant recruiting and training VA’s and editors and generally making sure the publishing machine was humming along.

Unfortunately, this made me neglect things like updating older posts, improving the structure of the sites, optimizing ad revenue and a bunch of other projects which were left behind during the publishing rush. It’s time to scale down on content production and pay attention to other projects.

And, I want to keep these monthly notes going too – at least until December. This was a New Year’s commitment I had made in January 2019 so I want to see it through until the end of the year. As for 2020, I’m toying with the idea of switching to monthly income reports instead of these web publishing notes. Leave me a comment if you think monthly income reports would be something you’d like to see here!

The October roundup

Ok, finally, the monthly roundup of posts from across the web! I’m going to make it short and sweet this month.

How to make $4,500 a month in a boring niche

Heidi Bender in a revealing guest blog post for NichePursuits.com. Interesting to read what worked – and what didn’t work – in the strange niche of “Thank You notes”. It reinforces my own view that the size of a site matters when you want to own a niche. Heidi also reveals her sites in the post, and it was interesting for me to take a peek and see what they looked like.

5 Things You Should Know About “People Also Ask”

Samuel Mangialavori explores the topic for Moz. It’s a long read – too long IMHO – but a great topic. I use the People Also Ask links all the time when preparing task descriptions for writers. These queries help me create a juicer outline for the topic which is basically what this article suggests doing.

Outreach promotion doesn’t make sense for many niches and here’s why

I’ve stayed away from outreach so far, for the very reasons Jon Dykstra so eloquently details in this post. I’m including it here because it’s always nice to have someone affirming your own views *wink* Also, I like crunching these ROI numbers too. Based on my own calculations, I’m actually about to try a form of basic outreach for entire sites.

Not for specific posts – I wholeheartedly agree it would be an overkill and a waste of resources for 99% of our posts. I’m talking about basic link outreach for entire sites.

A VA spends 4 hours reaching out to 100 sites asking for our site to be included in their resource pages. With a 1% success rate, that’s an on-topic link for $12-$15. We’ve only tested this once and the numbers are based on that experiment. We’re about to scale up on these outreach efforts, and I’ll post more about them once we have the data.

Thin Content: Why You Should Fix or Remove Low-Quality Web Pages

Jonas Sickler reviews the question in depth. It’s a topic that’s very close to my heart. In the coming weeks, I’ll be auditing and editing a large website that has too many content pages with hardly any traffic. Most of them are probably thin content. Hard decisions will have to be made, so I found this systematic approach helpful.

That’s it for this roundup! I did go over more blog posts this month – that’s the main purpose of this series, to make me actually sit down and read industry blogs! – but only these four made the cut.

I hope you find the links useful!

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