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I've actually reached $1,000 a month twice, but shortly after that my income fell dramatically and then a while later I sold one of my sites (got a decent 16 months worth of income out of the sale :) ) so I'm currently at a very steady $200 per month.
I've been in this game for some time, so I realize that there is no boilerplate generic response to this question, and that every site's income potential is dependent on many different factors; but how long did it take you to reach $1,00 a month? Also, appx how many articles had you produced on your chosen topic?
By my math, I'll need an additional 625 articles to reach my initial $1,000/mo goal. (This is assuming I make the same basic amount of money per article, and that I did all of my averaging correctly.. :) )
Your original question really isn't applicable with my site because it was already eight years old with decent traffic when I started using AdSense.
If you write only two articles a day you'll reach that 625 goal in less than a year. I hope you make it!
As for how many articles I'd written at the time, I don't recall offhand, but in any case some articles earned (and continue to earn) much more than others do. The "long tail" can bring in a lot of traffic and revenue, but the base of that long tail is fatter than the distant tip. :-)
Even on an article-centric site, it's not about sheer volume. Research you're niche, find out what people are actually searching for and write and title your posts accordingly. Write quality articles and notify the bloggers to gain inbound links, before long they'll check you site daily and quote you regularly.
All my content is user generated. I really can't remember how long it took to reach 1k first time around.
If I could *only* predict in advance which ones will do that, I'd just write those articles :)
Hah, I absolutely agree. 10% of my articles generate 90% of my income. The problem as you stated, is that you never really know which of them will be the real breadwinners, and which will never even get a visitor.
I just recently had an article that I wrote over a year ago suddenly skyrocket up the search engine ranks and start bringing in a good amount of traffic, so there's the time-delay factor as well.
I do get some user-generated content in the form of comments on my site; but it's hard to get much else as my site is about computer repair and the like. I could start a forum, but it's s'damn hard to get a forum up and going initially; and I don't like playing the whole "sock puppet*" game to make it look like it has members in order to gain more members.
*Where I man 10-15 profiles myself and make posts, responses, etc all by my lonesome. Perhaps if I had multiple personality disorder this would be more tolerable. :)
Research you're niche, find out what people are actually searching for and write and title your posts accordingly.
Ah, that reminds me of another question I intended on asking: What tools do ya'll use to research search phrases and the like? I've never gone too far out of my way to write an article based around nothing more than a search phrase as that just seems SPAMmy, and drives me nuts when I read a piece written by someone that repeats the same phrase 18 different ways in a paragraph; but there is an obvious benefit to at least looking at what - or more importantly - how people are searching for a topic.
So, throw some tool suggestions my way!
Zero articles - 1 week - $1K.
Not all things AdSense on the web revolve around articles ;)
True, but the word "article" can sometimes be used in the same context as the word "widget" is used to describe a product or service for sale. All of our sites are different but sometimes we need to reduce the objects to some common denominator for the purpose of discussion. An "article" could be used to describe any unit of content that attracts a visitor to the page. I suppose it could be a photo, a free download, or a video.
What tools do ya'll use to research search phrases and the like?
Google's suggestions in their search box is a great starting point because it's a new game with Google pointing visitors at specific keywords.
Used to be you could just use the shotgun approach and sprinkle everything from a niche in your pages and you would get some traffic because people typed in all sorts of stuff.
Not anymore, people got lazy with Google making suggestions and seem to more often than not just pick something off the list these days.
If you don't rank for what's on their suggestions, you're getting the dregs for sure.
[edited by: incrediBILL at 5:31 am (utc) on June 11, 2009]
An "article" could be used to describe any unit of content that attracts a visitor to the page. I suppose it could be a photo, a free download, or a video.
100% user generated content.
I wouldn't consider what I have articles, but it is unique content, it's just I didn't have to write it, I let the membership fill in all the blanks.
As for the original question, I don't remember how long but I was pleased as a punch.
For non-user generated content, article count doesn't always matter. Some articles, often stupid ones, way outshine very well written articles too.
I think it is a long-haul game. Having said that I try new ideas, learned things from people which helped me a lot. And I am just beginning. I probably don't even have 1/10 the revenue of the big guns in this forum.
Like jetteroheller it's much more difficult these days and if it's a new, widget-niche site then it could be very difficult indeed.
If one person can build a site now without to much sweat and toil that provides a few hundred per month then, IMHO, after this recession it should be well-placed to earn more.
The one proviso would be that there is sufficient global/national widget interest for the subject since some widgets are clearly a PITA!
a while later I sold one of my sites (got a decent 16 months worth of income out of the sale :)IMHO I wouldnt sell my domains for less than 3 years worth.
I started the web business in 2005 and am still waiting for that day to come. however, in 2006 I made over 600 bucks the first week when my site showed up first for a term that had become popular once it was published in the news and media. Thats when I got excited about the web business and started expanding my domains and business.
a couple of questions first please
how many articles did you have to have
how many search terms are bringing you traffic?
what are they?
how do they change over time?
My suggestion to you is to build out from existing successful pages/ search terms
*plug the search term people found you with into google adwords external keyword tool
*point the google adwords external keyword tool at your pages
10% of my articles generate 90% of my income
an article that I wrote over a year ago suddenly skyrocket up the search engine ranks
tools do ya'll use to research search phrases
that repeats the same phrase 18 different ways
I started the web business in 2005 and am still waiting for that day to come.
Oh..that was me..The max I have ever been up to has been $15 days...and that was a couple..Basically, I just don't concentrate on one single idea..I keep changing my website so I should have washed away a thousand different pages down the drain through these years..If only I had them all till now. :(
Our newest site is about 2 years old and currently makes around $400/month and growing. Someday we would like it to be a 1k earner.
Traffic is really the controlling factor. If you hit it big early, you can hit that mark a lot faster.
Traffic is really the controlling factor.
Topic and clickthrough rate can also play a large role. A topic that attracts an average EPC of 25 or 50 cents will rack up money faster (for a given level of traffic) than a topic with an average EPC of a nickel. Just as important, clickthrough rates can vary hugely by type of content and audience: A technically-oriented forum for ASense publishers might get hardly any clicks at all for example, just because forums reputedly suffer more from "ad blindness" than, say, review sites do and TOS-conscious AdSense publishers may be gun-shy about clicking on ads (even ads on other people's sites).
For what it's worth, I'd guess that many name-brand "premium publishers" sites have abysmal AdSense EPCs and CTRs even though they have a lot of traffic. How many people who read about the war in Afghanistan or Iranian election irregularities on a newspaper site are likely to even notice, let alone click on, the AdSense text ads next to those articles? Especially when the ads next to such articles are likely to be irrelevant? (I checked a WaPo article about the Iranian elections a moment ago, and it showed one "Ad by Google": an ad for storage software. Contrast that with, say, an ad for discounted ski widgets next to a ski-widget review at a skiing site.)
If you looked at my stats and followed the highest traffic pages you would be wasting your time.
My highest earning pages, typically, have 5 - 10% of the traffic of the top five traffic pages. It's good that way as well, because if you look on the net for my sites you can easily find out the high traffic volume pages. But try and find the ones that earn the real income and you can't. Can you?
My first month beyond $1000 was November 2004
First day beyond $100 March 27th 2005
Just right now, I am struggling again at the $100 a day border because of the economic crisis.
For me, within a few months of joining AdSense I was on $1000 months and progress was slow for a couple of years then the economic crisis hit and I've been knocked right back.
I was almost at my $100d day mark just before then (last year sometime), although I made a critical site change that damaged my income for a few months. Watch out for them!
Out of interest. I'm running on one site. Do people generally fare better with several?