Leaving Work Behind

My First Niche Site: Update #5 – The Power Of Targeted Traffic

Written by Tom Ewer on August 12, 2011. 18 Comments

This is Part #5 of a series. A list of all the other updates can be found at the bottom of this post.

Please note that Modeling For Kids is no longer an active site. If you’d like to know why I shut down the site and started up a new one, click here.

Hello all! You may have noticed that my niche site updates come somewhat sporadically. This is because I only write updates when I feel I have an important lesson that I can teach, or am able to report an uptick in rankings.

Well, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that I am here to teach you what I think is a very important lesson. The bad news is that I have little to report in terms of a ranking improvement!

My Niche Site’s Key Statistics

My First Niche Site: Update #5 - The Power Of Targeted Traffic

Taken out of context, some of these figures look very positive. For instance, the visits per day has shot up by well over 100%. However, the Google ranking is still #9, and the increase in income generation is extremely modest. So what is the story behind the numbers?

Thylane Loubry Blondeau

Thylane Loubry Bloundeau is a French child model, who recently featured on the front cover of French Vogue.

Her spread has attracted an enormous amount of (largely negative) publicity due to the sexual nature of the photos.

Until last Saturday evening, I had never even heard of Thylane (I admit it – I don’t keep up to date with fashion news!). I was contacted via email by the BBC on Saturday, asking for my reaction to her controversial spread. Being the opportunistic chap that I am, I quickly read up on the story, gave the lady at the BBC a call and gave her my two cents. I was hoping for a link from the BBC website, which would have of course been a huge coup. Unfortunately, the BBC representative never followed up the story with me.

However, I noticed that the story was getting an enormous amount of coverage, so I decided to write an article on the subject. Little did I know the relatively huge impact this would have on my traffic.

My First Niche Site: Update #5 - The Power Of Targeted Traffic

Within a couple of days of the article being published, traffic on my niche site exploded. Monday brought an above-average 40 unique visitors. Tuesday brought 113. Then Wednesday brought a remarkable 230 visitors!

So it is clear that I capitalised on a hot topic. However, this whole venture was of no real benefit to me, apart from serving to reinforce an important lesson.

It’s Not Just About The Numbers…

Traffic is all well and good, but there are various different types. Some traffic is highly valuable, and some offers little to no value whatsoever. It just so turns out that the huge uptick in traffic my niche site has experienced is the completely useless type.

The fact is, the vast majority of people who have been visiting my niche site over the last few days have little to no interest in child modeling whatsoever. And that means a few things:

  1. They are not going to explore my site
  2. They are not going to give me their email address
  3. They are not going to click on my targeted ads

Or, to put it more concisely – I offer them no value whatsoever beyond the article. It’s like a vegan walking into a butchers – no sale to be had there.

How do I know this? Two reasons:

My First Niche Site: Update #5 - The Power Of Targeted Traffic

Average actions and average time per visit are down, and bounce rate is up

My First Niche Site: Update #5 - The Power Of Targeted Traffic

The vast majority of searches are for media (i.e. photographs)

It is clear from the above metrics that the vast majority of visitors are not people I am looking to attract. For the most part, they want to see photographs – Modeling For Kids is an authority site, not a media site. When the visitors hit my site, they are more often than not bouncing straight back off.

People who aren’t looking for child modeling advice are not going to want to hang around on my site, and they are not going to be interested in clicking on my targeted ads. My site is of limited value to them, and they are of no value to me.

Other Developments

The site briefly flirted with 7th position in Google before returning to 9th position, which is encouraging. What comes as a very pleasant surprise is that it has been gifted a Page Rank of 4! This comes as quite a surprise, given that the site is still very young. Many people try for months or years to obtain such a PR. Unfortunately, the increase in PR doesn’t seem to have had a positive effect on the rankings.

I am starting a fresh backlinking strategy starting today. I am aware that many of you would like to know what my strategies have been, but I am hesitant to reveal them until I have reached the #1 spot in Google. Once I have acheived my goal, I promise you that I will be revealing all!

Read The Whole Series

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18 Responses to “My First Niche Site: Update #5 – The Power Of Targeted Traffic”

  1. Kelly
    August 12, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Hey Tom – really interested in seeing your backlinking strategy (who isn’t??). I hope you get to #1 soon! Great updates by the way, very detailed.

    That is absolutely AMAZING how that spike in traffic hit when you wrote about that French child model. It’s very interesting and reminds me how important it is that articles not only be timeless (evergreen), but relevant as well. I may implement a strategy like this in another niche site of mine.

    • Tom Ewer
      August 12, 2011 at 6:13 pm

      You’ve made a great point there Kelly that I alluded to in my article – unless you’re running some kind of news site, your content should be as “evergreen” as possible. When building authority sites, it’s all about getting relatively consistent traffic. Thanks for commenting! 🙂

  2. Liam
    August 12, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    Very interesting. I’m absolutely going to go back and read the previous updates.

  3. Richard Scott
    August 13, 2011 at 12:07 am

    Page rank of 4 in 80 days? WOW! I’ve had my site up and running for 4 years and only got up to a 3. The last update bumped me down to a 2 (And I have over 1,000 pages and 75,000 visitors a month). Sucks! What you’ve done with your niche is very impressive. Are you checking your keyword rankings with market samurai? It looks it to me, but I’ve never used the tool for that. I should learn how. 🙂

  4. Steven
    August 13, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    It’s very interesting the traffic spike you got from writing the new article and the level of involvement you got from those visitors. Kind of like getting an article on Digg frontpage

  5. Thomas Sinfield
    August 16, 2011 at 5:24 am

    Definitely some promising results so far Tom. What program/plugin are you using for those stats pictures?

    Pity you didn’t get a link back from the Vogue website, that definitely would have been a nice little boost 🙂

    • Tom Ewer
      August 16, 2011 at 8:19 am

      I use Market Samurai for all keyword research/stat tracking/etc. It’s pretty pricey, but I would highly recommend it to anyone!

      • Thomas Sinfield
        August 16, 2011 at 11:11 pm

        I use Market Samurai also, excellent tool! But I was referring to the visitor and traffic referral images that you included at the bottom of your post. That’s not just Google Analytics is it?

        • Tom Ewer
          August 17, 2011 at 7:45 am

          I know very well you use Market Samurai as I have seen you promoting it on your blog, so I don’t know why I said that! 😉

          The analytics I use for my niche site is http://getclicky.com/ – to be honest, it’s not so different to Google Analytics. I think I prefer the interface, but you lose some advanced options unless you pay. I use Google Analytics for this blog, and Get Clicky for my niche site, so I suppose that shows that I don’t have a particular preference!

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