If you have followed my website for any length of time, you are by now aware that I like using Reddit to get my article ideas. I search reddit for questions and then I answer them, here, though not often on Reddit. While I post answers here on my website daily, often 3 or more a day, I only post answers on Reddit once, maybe twice, a week, if that often. I dislike the toxic vibes of Reddit comment sections and so avoid dealing with them, by writing up very long comments and then NOT posting the comment on Reddit, but rather instead posting it here for you. my readers, because I know you guys are not toxic. And so, that is what this page is, yet again, today. I have found a question on reddit and I am going to answer it here instead of answering it o Reddit. Enjoy!
Today, let's do something a little bit different. Starting last week of July 2023, I have been testing out ChatGPT on my website. Today, let's see what ChatGPT has to say about this Reddit post.
I'm going to start out by answering the post myself, and then afterwards, I am going to paste the question into ChatGPT and see how similar or different AI's answer is from mine.
I've driven ChatGPT insane and it's wonderful, LOL! I've programed ChatGPT to yip yap bubbling screaming fangirl gushing lovefeast about BoomFuzzy, to every question I give it, no matter what it's answering. You can see it in action here... last half of the page where I ask ChatGPT to write an answer to a Reddit post and do it in my voice and style of writing. I'm fascinated by ChatGPT's ability to write endless gushfeast screaming fangirl insanity about BoomFuzzy, just, from telling it to copy my style. I love making AI go insane, it's so much fun!
Niche: Author Homepage of a Fantasy Author (me), where I post daily articles on how to write/edit/publish novels/novellas/short stories. I primarily focus on topics of Fantasy genre, particularly brainstorming ideas, character creation, and world building. I post writing prompt charts, monthly writing challenges, and created several random generators for writing related things. Basically, people visit my site because they are young writers looking to get started in a novel writing career.
Audience: My audience is primarily two fold, with a couple of oddball offshoots.
Primary audience is new/young/teen writers looking for get started in writing and self-publishing various Fantasy genres (mostly Cozy Fantasy, Sword and Sorcery, Gothic Fantasy, Furry Yaoi, Space Fantasy, LGBTQAI+ Fantasy, and Fantasy Romance), who are just getting started in the career and are looking for guidance on how to get started. About 80% of the pages on my site are devoted to various "how to write" or "how to edit" or "how to publish" or "how to create characters'' or "how to world build" all on the topic of the Fantasy genre, with the bulk of the focus being around creating Elves, Elven Mages, Elf Societies, Furry lovers for Elves, and Elf Magic Systems.
My secondary audience are readers of my published books who are looking to find out more lore about the world and characters of the franchise I write. Over a thousand pages of my site are character profiles, worldbuilding lore, character art, and free to read online bonus flash fiction mini stories about the characters and locations from my novels.
The oddball offshoots are people interested in learning about my people/culture (we are Gypsies). Over a thousand articles are devoted to detailing Gypsy culture and society, how we live, aimed at helping writers to more accurately represent our people in their novels, by providing writers with resources about our people written by our people.
The largest demographic, are Stephen King fans interested in only 2 pages of my, one about Thinner (I'm the real world Gypsy Witch he based the fictional movie Gypsy Witch off of) and the other about Christine (I own the real world haunted car that he based his fictional car off of). I made those 2 pages simply because Stephen King fans wouldn't stop requesting I do so. Those 2 pages account for over a million views each year.
Site Age and Size: I started my site in 1996 on a free host, moved it to WordPress in 2007, then moved to self hosting in 2013 after WordPress informed me my site had too many pages and was crashing their servers too often, so could I please stop adding pages to it. I changed domain names for each of those three moves. So it's been on its current domain name since 2013, even though the site has been online since 1996 and will be 30 years old in 3 years.
I post 1 to 3 pages, almost daily, all written by me. There are currently over ten thousand articles on the site. However, I use no follow and no index for robot codes on most pages, so only around two thousand pages are indexed by Google, forcing readers to have to click through to other pages manually from my site, as there is no other way to access the more than eight thousand unindexed by Google pages. I am the only writer and I outsource nothing. All the code, graphics, art, photos, everything is all by me.
Each article is minimum 2k words long, I refuse to publish anything under two thousand words, I strive for a 4k word minimum, but most articles are 7k words long.
My longest articles are 199k words and 163k words. There are more than 500 articles that are each over 100k words long (for reference point the average 400 page paperback novel is around 80k words). Yes, I know I could divide each of those into ten or twenty "chapter" pages to get more click through, but I care about my readers too much to annoy them by making them click to new pages to read the full article. I know everyone says this is bad for SEO, but I don’t give a rat's ass about SEO. I care about my readers and making my site best for them, not some robot.
Traffic: fluctuates wildly and varies with seasons and current trends in the publishing industry.
Low months dip to ~35k/month.
Most months 100k to +300k/month.
The highest months reach a million views or more, but those are very rare and not typical, and have only ever happened a few times, each time can be traced back to some current news event happening to be the same topic as one of my old articles and that one article getting huge spikes in traffic for a few days after the news report.
The most views I ever got in a single month was in December 2019 when one of my page topic keywords (a page about how to create characters for Fantasy novels that was looking at how various authors had created their characters) was in national news and that one page got 7MILLION views that month. The views in the millions are not typical though, that was a one time thing, caused by I had a 5 year old page that briefly git huge views because of a news event (the release of the Witcher Netflix show) and I happened to have an "about the character" page for Ciri, and it got flooded with views because literally no one else at the time, had a page about Ciri. Now everyone has a page about Ciri, so now no one gets more than a few hundred views because of over saturation. So my getting 7million views December 2019 was a fluke caused by I happened to have the only page on the internet, about an extremely obscure character, and that character suddenly got famous, and suddenly my old page got a shit ton load of traffic all at once, because Google literally had not one other page to send people to.
My single most trafficked page of all, has received 30 MILLION reads since it was published in 2007. (The 199k word article, which is around 800 printed pages of a paperback book).
My 2nd most trafficked page has received ten million views since it was published in 2010. (The 163k word article, which is around 730 pages of a printed paperback book.).
Both of those pages are about Stephen King.
So my view rate can be anywhere from 35k to 7million views per month, but most months I can expect 100k to 300k as the norm.
Typically my highest traffic months are October (because of Halloween) and November (because of National Novel Writing Month) and December (because of Christmas) and March or April (because of Easter, whichever month Easter falls in that year). Those are the months I can expect to see 300k visits each month. The rest of the months of the year, slumps down to under 100k visits each, and can drop to under 10k visits if something in life causes people to be not as spendthrift (for example the current war, caused a noticeable decrease in traffic) or if trends fade (for example the Henry Cavill curfuffall caused a stark decrease in traffic to my Witcher related character pages).
I deal a lot with the topic of writing "Holiday Special" stories for specific Holidays, and this is why I get huge spikes in traffic around those particular Holidays, because that's when people are searching for articles on how to write those topics.
Income: fluctuates wildly and varies with seasons and current trends in the publishing industry. Can be high as $6k/week one month then drop to ZERO for months in a row. Can usually expect $2k a month, but it's all over the place, so it's never good to make plans ahead of time because the money may or may not be there next month.
Income Source: Product sales.
I'm a career writer, this is my full time job, so writing/editing/cover art/formatting/etc (for both my fiction books and non-fiction articles) takes up 12+ hours a day 5 days a week. I published the first 16 page short story in 1978... today 48 years later I have published 138 novels (120k to 175k words each), 423 novellas (20k to 65k words each), and more then 2,000 short stories (5k to 12k each), and I am still going, no end in sight, currently writing/publish a new 20k word novella about every 10 days or so (around 40 new books a year or around eight hundred thousand words published each year). The genre is Fantasy in various niches (Cozy Fantasy, Gothic Fantasy, Space Fantasy, Fantasy Romance, etc).
My primary income sources are Zazzle and Amazon KDP, with DriveThruRPG, LuLu, and GumRoad following up behind them.
I have merch for my characters available on Ts, mugs, body pillows, wall hangings, posters, keyrings, ect. via Zazzle, and this is my top income source. Typically around $600 a week.
Amazon, DriveThruRPG, LuLu, and GumRoad combine to around $2k most months, though it can both go much higher or much lower depending on seasonal fluctuations.
While I have Google AdSense on my site and also make YouTube videos, my income from Google is rarely over $100 a month, once in a while reaching $900 a month, but it’s often less than $100 a month and as the minimum payout of $100, that means I only get a payout once every 2 to 3 months, rather than monthly. I keep planning to someday optimize for Google AdSense better, but I’m just so busy writing books and articles that this keeps getting pushed to the back burner and someday never gets here. I am aware that if I did better keyword research and allowed Google’s bots to crawl/index more of my pages, that my Google pay would go up, I just haven’t been highly motivated to act on that awareness. It’s on my “to do list”. I have over 10k pages on my site, but by not allowing the bots to crawl most of them, I am also not allowing ads to be placed on them. I have to remove the no-bot-crawl codes before Google will place ads on the pages. So, only the 2k pages that I allow Google’s bots to index, get ads places on them, and the largely bulk of my traffic goes to 2 pages without ads on them, meaning that, in spite of my high traffic, I don’t have high ad placement, thus the abnormally low Google payouts vs the abnormally high traffic.
MOST of my traffic DOES NOT come from search engines. Rather the bulk of my traffic comes from direct clicks on social media links. Every page on my site, has “share this” buttons for Twitter, Tumblr, FaceBook, Reddit, and about a dozen others, and about 80% of my traffic comes from my readers sharing the links to my pages on their social medias, and their followers clicking those links to visit my site.
So my traffic is nearly entirely organic “word of mouth” via my readers sharing with their followers. Thus why I can get away with tacking the no-index/no-crawl/no-bots cods on more then 8k of my pages and still get traffic.
Like I said, I started this site in 1996… back then Yahoo was not yet invented, let alone Google. I used then, and still use now, “Web Ring” codes and “Fan Listing” codes to drive traffic to my site. In those early days 99% of my traffic came from “MySpace sharing” and when MySpace died I switched to FaceBook and Twitter (joined both in 2008) and, then when things like search engines and Google were invented, I just never jumped on the search engine optimization bandwagon and instead continued to rely on my fans to do the whole word of mouth sharing links with each other thing, soooo, I never even bothered to allow Google to index most of my pages either. I just never saw the point of why I should grovel to Google when there are plenty of other ways to get traffic that have nothing to do with search engines at all. I was getting traffic to my site for well over a decade BEFORE the invention of search engines, long before Google even existed, so, why should I bow and scrape to search engines?
Buuut, the side effect of that is Google will not allow their ads to appear on any page not in their index, so, I get almost no pay from Google ads. Oh well.
Seo: I know nothing about SEO. I have been told that what I do, is actually very good SEO, but, I don't know if it is or not. What I do is this:
I do narrow focus my topic of each article to a single "keyword phrase" and I do use a "keyword cluster" network of inter linking my pages to each other, and I do write schema markup meta codes for each page's header, and I ensure to create a unique image for each page.
I use h1, h2, h3, and h4 bars for each page making sure that a long tail variation phrase of my page keyword is in each h tag heading.
I make sure that no fewer than 10 and no more than 20 other pages of my site are linked to in the body text of the article with the anchor words being the keyword of the linked to page.
I also make sure to add 2 separate lists of links to the bottom of each page. One list links to 3 to 10 "you might also like" pages from my own site, that are on topic of the current page. The other lists goes to 3 other sites, not mine, like a news article or a masterclass article or a ted talk article, that is on topic to the current page. I find the 3 outside links by using Google to search for my page keyword and picking 3 off page 1 that are most on topic to the article I wrote.
If I can find a YouTube video on topic to my article, I embed it into my article as well.
Finally I head to Reddit to search writing subs for a thread on topic to my article and, leave a comment there, then embed my comment into the article, and then leave a not for my readers to head to that Reddit thread to discuss this topic further. (You can see that in practice on this very page that you are reading, right now).
And, if I had a Playlist playing while I wrote the article, I embed it into the page and say something like "here's good music to listen to while you read this page".
For example, here is the song I am listening to right now:
Lastly, I make sure each page contains links to my novels and novellas on Amazon KDP, DriveThruRPG, and GumRoad, as well as to my character art merch on Zazzle. I created a java coded 3x4 grid, that displays 9 books 3x3 and 3 merch items under the books, with each box of the grid coded to refresh with a different product each time the page refreshes. I have over 400 books on Amazon and over 12k merch items on Zazzle, and ALL of these items are feed into the code, so it will eventually display all 400 books 9 books at a time and all 12k merch items 3 items at a time. Also I use the affiliate links provided by Amazon and Zazzle so in addition to royalties from sales, I also get the affiliate share too.
Here it is:
After publishing a new article, I share its image graphic to one of my (several hundred) Pinterest pinboards, depending on the topic. And tweet it to Twitter (where I have only 2k followers) and post it to Facebook (where I only have 2k followers who are mostly the same followers who are on Twitter). I guess this could be seen as social media marketing, but, those are one link each to 3 sites per day, and I use those 3 sites so much for other stuff that those 3 links are quickly lost in the mix. I post HUNDREDS of random thoughts on Twitter and Facebook daily, hourly, just using both like a diary, rambling out things like "a police car just drove by, wonder where they are heading?" or "there is an old lady walking a rat terrier past my driveway right now", just random shit going on around my neighborhood, so you really have to sift through hundreds of those sort of posts to find the one post with a link in it.
Backlinks: People are always asking me what my backlink strategy is, but, I don't have one. I have never bought, asked for, or exchanged any links. I do not know if any one links to my site or not, nor do I know how to find out if any one is linking to me.
People often ask me to link to them, some offering to pay for the links. I do not accept these. I am a stickler for quality and it's rare that anyone looking to pay for a link on my site ever has good enough grammar or spelling skills for me to even consider linking to them. They forget that I am a big name bestselling author and I put mega amounts of emphasis on spelling, grammar, and editing abilities. And my site is only going to link to sites with pristine grammar, spelling, and editing proficiencies, because my end goal is to help new writers become better writers. If you do not have exemplary writing and editing skills, I AM NOT going to recommend my readers go to your site.
Each of my articles links to an offsite article, but those articles are picked by me, and I don't even tell the webmaster I am linking back to them. They had a top quality, on topic article that I felt would help my readers to become better writers and that's why I linked to them.
Marketing: I don't do marketing.
I don't do pre orders or sales.
I don't buy ads. Not for either my website or my books.
I don't use social media marketing. (Unless you consider what I mentioned above to be that, but, I don’t as I'm not actually making attempts to get traffic via the 3 links a day, mentioned earlier).
I don't have a newsletter.
I do not have nor use email, so I don’t have any email lists either.
I upload weekly short stories and novellas to Amazon, just uploading when the story is finished and then immediately start work on the next story, and upload daily articles to my website, uploading each as soon as I finish writing it, then immediately start work on the next one.
My method is simply to write what I know my readers want to read, and write a lot of it. Both formats fiction books and my non fiction articles.
I do use "passive marketing" on my books. By this I mean, I have professional cover art that is on point for my genre, every book goes through 7 rigorous rounds of editing and is nearly error free when published, each of the 7 kdp keywords is a long tail phrase narrow focused to the topic of the book's story plot, and the books are written with a specific genre audience in mind so they use a formula to hit all the beats and tropes readers expect for the genre.
I am however mega addicted to Pinterest. I make pin boards constantly, have several hundred pin boards, and sharing and reminding other people's pins at a rate of 50 or 60 or more repins a day, and my pin boards get 100k to 200k views DAILY just because I have so many of them. Interestingly, for all the pinning I do, I only create 1 pin a day for my own material, and it seems to be my LACK of self promotion that in fact drives high rates of traffic from Pinterest to my site, because I have insane numbers of pinboard followers and hundreds of pinboards, but I’m sharing the pins of others, and that seems to be what causes them to try to find out which pins are mine so they can share mine in return. Pinterest in turn results in around 64% of all my traffic to my site, which again, as I said before MOST of my traffic is organic, from word of mouth social media sharing done by others, and fewer than 10% of my total traffic comes from search engines at all.
Anyways, there it is. That’s my niche, my income, and how I do it.
Could I do things different to make more money from it? Probably.
Am I going to do things differently to make more money from it? Probably not. I’m not someone who is motivated by money. My goal has always been to help young writers get published. Making money was never a goal for any of this. That it makes money is a bonus to me and not an objective.
Hopefully this info will help someone with their own blog/website. Good luck with your projects!
Oh, hard niche to monetize. Same niche as me. I tried affiliates but finding on topic affiliates is near impossible, so I gave up on affiliates. I use Google AdSense but publishing industry searches just aren't high enough to get enough clicks so rarely reach $100 each month.
For me, and several others I know in this niche, the big money is from writing a shit ton load of Romance novellas on Amazon KDP, aim to have 50+ published each around 20k words, and then sign up for Amazon Affiliates and then focus on your blog after that.
Aim at 3+ blog posts a week, 1 to 3 daily if possible, and make them be very personal. Stuff like "here's how I created my main character" or "how I write my Romance novellas" and throughout the article, constantly mention your published books on Amazon, and at the end of the article use the Amazon affiliate code to embed the image of you book, and end by saying "check out my Romance novella on Amazon KDP today!"
You end up monetizing your blog via both royalties from the sales of your books and from the affiliate shares as well.
Also, go wide, list your books on every seller, not just Amazon, and NEVER price your ebook for under $2.99, and make it available in paperback and hardcover as well. I get way more paperback sales than ebook sales.
So far every blogger in this niche I've ever talked to, this is the top best way to make money from your blog.
I go into huge more detail on how I do it in my other comment on this thread, if you want more information on monetizing this niche.
Hope this helps you out. Good luck!
I don't know if there is an SEO advantage or not. I have never done SEO on my site. Never done keyword research, never researched competitors, never bought backlinks, never bought ads, and never hired anyone for anything. I just write what my readers want. So, I couldn't say if what I do is good for seo or not. I think more about what my fanbase wants. Why are my fans on my site to begin with? What would my readers expect to find when they arrive at my site? What will they enjoy that will keep them coming back for more? And then tailor my site to match reader expectations.
With that in mind, when I first started my site, I had a ton of stuff already written. Don't remember now how many it was, as it was several years ago, but it was maybe around 70 articles. And I had the exact same question as you, only not about seo.
After thinking about it for a bit, I came to the conclusion that if I was a screaming fangirl heading to my favorite author's website, I would expect there to be a bunch of articles in several categories.
And so on.
Basically I put myself in the shoes of the audience I expected to visit my site, and asked myself what I would expect if I was them, and then I set out to provide that audience with content to meet their expectations.
In the end, what I did was this:
I sat myself down and made a list of all the categories I would expect to find if I was a reader visiting an author website. Then I took that list and created all of those categories. And then, I made sure that each category had at least 3 articles.
So when my site finally went live, it had over a dozen different categories, and each category had minimum 3 articles per category.
In the end, by the time my site went live, it already had more than one hundred articles published, that was my readers had a wide assortment of things to do, as soon as they arrived.
From that day forward, I made it my goal to add 1 to 3 articles a day. That way my readers had a reason to return each day. Today, 28 years later, my site now has more than 10k articles and is still to this day updated daily with at least 1 new article, every day.
In short: figure out who your reader is, what your reader wants, and give them what they are looking for, but do so in a way that inspires them to become addicted to returning daily to find out what's new.
Is this good for seo?
I don't know.
Where does my site stand with DA and DR?
Not a clue.
What I do know is today, 3 decades later, I get over 100k visits a month, average read time is well over an hour, I get millions of impressions with an 11.6% click through rate, and more than 80% of my traffic comes from my fans sharing links to my pages on their Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Reddit, and their personal blogs.
I put more value in word of mouth recommendations from my readers, then I do in search engine rankings, so I focus on creating content that my readers can't wait to share with their friends and family, while not bothering to even consider what search engines might want.
I write for my readers, not for robots, and this causes my readers to return daily to share links to my pages with their friends, and I think that has far more value than being indexed and ranked high by all the search engines out there.
So, what do YOUR readers expect?
Think about what type of person is going to be rabidly addicted to obsessively reading your every word. Then ask yourself, what will they expect to find the first time they arrive at your site? What categories will they look for, what pages will they seek out, what articles will they want to read? The answers will be different for every niche. No matter what those answers may be in your niche, make sure those pages are published to your site before your site goes live.
Will your readers expect all 50 pages there already? If so, publish them all at once.
Will your readers expect a new article each day, but you are not sure you can keep up with it? If so, save the 50 articles, publish 1 a day, while also writing new ones, that way you have something to publish daily even if you miss writing one day.
I don't think there is an actual right or wrong answer here as every niche and audience has different reader expectations and you need to cater what you do to match the expectations of your target audience.
Hope this helps. Good luck with your project.
>Sites positively impacted by Google HCU - what is your niche? I’m developing a theory that some niches were hurt worse than others. For those of you who were positively impacted by the Google HCU- what is your blogs niche?
My site SEEMS to have been positively impacted, but I also just started a new series/sub-topic of posts on my blog, in August and so it COULD be just a side effect of that? I'm not sure. I know nothing of SEO, so I'm not sure how to tell if my site was impacted good or bad. I can tell you what I believe is the reason why my traffic has gone up since the Helpful Content Update, but in the end, it's just me theorizing and I'm not sure if what I think happened is what actually happened or not.
But, I'll tell you my topic and how I go about managing my site, and maybe it will give you SEO guys some insight into what is causing some sites to increase rank and other sites to decrease.
Maybe those with traffic decreases can compare what I do to what they do, and use it to help their ranks go back up?
I don't know if this will be useful or not, but, here's what I am seeing on my end with my site:
-I always make sure all my articles, essays, short stories, novellas, lore, worldbuilding, character backstories, character art, drawings, paintings, photos, and videos, offer a satisfying experience to the site visitors (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves).
-Everything focuses on people-centric content meant for the readers (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves) first instead of for Google bots. Founded in 1996, my website is not only older than Google, my website existed before search engines were even invented, and as such my content is not written for search engines. Meaning I DO NOT USE SEO at all. And being one of the oldest sites on the entire internet, it also is not rehashing what others have already written.
-Additionally I live in the State of Maine where affiliate marketing was illegal until August 2017.
As such affiliate marketing was never an option for the first two and a half decades of my website, so my site has never relied on any sort of advertising, simply because I lived in a state which had laws making monetization of websites illegal. AdSense and affiliate programs were not options in my region before 2017, but my site was started in 1996, meaning that my site spent over two decades unmonetized. I never wrote with a goal of making money, because monetization of websites was illegal where I lived. Resulting in my writing was just me fangirl love gushing my hobbies uninhibited by worrying if the article would result in income, thus why I was never writing with a goal of making money. This means the first ten thousand articles published on my site were all published before there was even a possibility of the site being monetized. As my content was not written for affiliate marketing, or Google AdSense, or any other kind of income, this means I have never had any incentive to write things like product reviews or other such thin content bullshit, that exists only to bring in clicks for money.
-And THIS is the major place where my site differs from the bulk of sites negatively hit by the September 2023 Helpful Content Update. My articles are written to share knowledge and ding dong bing bong: ACTUALLY help people learn how to do something without any ulterior motive. Whereas the websites where the author earns a commission even though they haven't used the product personally, or even if they have, is NOT original content because there are MILLIONS of other websites reviewing those exact same products.
-I strive to make it a goal that my existing audience (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves) should find the content useful when they visit my site directly. My goal being to be a site that they bookmark, and visit daily WITHOUT using a search engine to locate me, because they love my work so much that they pin a direct link shortcut to my site right onto their desktop, so I'm always a click away WITHOUT having to even open a search engine at all.
-I get only around 500 to 3,000 visits per month coming to my site from Google, though I also get 30k to 70k visits per month from Bing, so clearly Bing drives more traffic to me then Google does, whereas my site receives 100k to 300k visits per month from RSS feed subscribers, and social media links (posted by my fans, NOT posted by me) on places like Pinterest, Tumblr, FaceBook, Reddit, Blogger, Twitter X, etc. Meaning I am not a slave to Google updates, and have never been impacted by any Google updates, simply because Google does not drive enough traffic to my site for me to even bother focusing on Google as a traffic source at all. My highest traffic month was December 2019 when I got 7 million visitors all to a single page that had been published nearly a decade earlier.
-My blog is an ACTUAL blog aka the daily web log of an individual person. An online diary. All self written. I hire no one. All posts are written by me. All the code is written by me. All graphics are created by me. The entire site, back end, front end, all of it, is all hand written and hand coded by me. Which means there is no WordPress or WordPress type site underneath, no apps, no plug-ins. Just 100% old school hand written code. Yes, it LOOKS like a site made in the 1990s, complete with dancing banana gifs and eye-popping neon colours, because it IS a site made in the 1990s. It went live in 1996, remember? Yes it looks dated, but, you know what? It also looks incredibly unique and doesn't look like the millions of dime a dozen bland, same old-same old templated white sites devoid of any kind of personality at all.
-My articles are huge and I mean HUGE. The longest one, the one which has gotten 30million reads since it was published in 2007, is 199k words long. For reference, that is longer than the last 3 Harry Potter novels combined. It is over 2,000 page in paperback novel size. One hundred and ninety nine thousand words on ONE page.
-None of my pages are under 2k words, most of my pages are over 7k words, and EVERY page (well over a thousand pages) with over a million views is also over 50k words long, the size of the novel The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Yes, I know Google has no word count recommendations. Keep in my my site is almost 15 years OLDER than Google and so it had 2k+ articles a full decade BEFORE the 2k wird myth started. Though keep in mind as well, that more than 2/3rds of my content is also FICTION (short stories, novellas, character backstories, and worldbuilding lore) that is "bonus content" for readers of my traditionally published paperback Fantasy novels who are looking for more stuff the read. In short, my site readers are ACTUAL BOOK READERS and they are actively seeking free to read online LONG FORM content. No where am I saying that YOUR Niche requires 2k+ word articles. I am simply stating that MY niche is one that will get zero traffic if it DOES NOT have long pages, simply because of the target audience my niche caters to. Each niche is going to have different ideal word counts, depending on the type of reader you are catering to. If your niche is one where readers are seeking short quick one paragraph answers, then long content could work against you. So, what I am saying here is match your content to YOUR ideal reader and their expectations. Ideal word count is going to be very different from one niche to another. I just happen to be in a niche where readers are actively looking for 5k to 10k word pages, so that is what I am writing. It's always about writing what MY ideal target reader wants, and knowing WHO my target audience is so I know what they are looking for.
-Most of my pages fall into one of five categories:
-There are more than 140k photographs and art images, all photos taken by me on film cameras, all art painted by me in watercolor on rag. Each page has on average 25 to 50 photos and images.
-My content ACTUALLY educates and or entertains readers, and does so without trying to sell them anything. They can read my articles without fear of a sales pitch at the end. They can read my articles knowing that it is actual authentic advice that has no monetary motivation behind it.
-Because I am an ACTUAL expert in my field, an ACTUAL authority in my topic, I don't need to do in-depth research. I simply white what I know from experience in doing it first hand.
-Due to the nature of my topic, it is completely, absolutely impossible for any one to be a competitor, because my content is just absolutely truly unique, one of a kind, all original, first hand experience. And because it is so incredibly unique, it is also incredibly helpful to those who are seeking this kind of content. Granted, because it is so unique, it is also a tiny niche, meaning not many people are actually looking for my topic; but because it is so unique, the few people who are looking for it get sent directly to me by Google and Bing because there is quite literally not one competitor out there, so no place else for Google to send them.
-I have never bought an ad, never bought a backlink, I don't know how to find out if I even have any backlinks, I have never guest posted on other sites, I am the only writer on my site so never allowed others to guest post on mine, I have never researched keywords, I never researched competitors, I don't even know who my competitors would be, never done any of the things people on this sub recommend you do, and I never heard of DA/DR/NeilP/SemRush/aherf/or any of the other tools/jargon/lingo/garrus/experts until 2 weeks ago when I joined this sub. It seems that by NOT doing the most commonly recommended (by this sub) SEO tactics, I have inadvertently accidently done "good" SEO in the eyes of Google and its Helpful Content Update, because since the update my traffic from Google has more than doubled.
-According to Bing my site ranks #1 on page 1 for seventeen thousand (17k) keywords. While according to Google my site ranks 1 to 10 for over a thousand keywords/phrases and 11 to 26 for over ten thousand keywords. Combining the information from both Bing and Google, taken monthly seasonal highs and lows into consideration, averaging for a 12 month period, I get on average several million impressions monthly, average 59k clicks monthly, average 11.6% click through rate, and average a page rank of 18… on a site that was built in 1996, has changed domain names and hosts 3 times since then, is on its current domain since 2013, has 1 to 3 articles posted daily, and crossed its ten thousandth article published in 2017.
-My site offers my first-hand use and experience of everything I write about. I do not rely on "online research" or second hand experience. Any research done is actual field testing, me driving to locations to visit museums/lighthouses/cemeteries/etc. I always demonstrate first-hand experience. Because of this my content is very, very, very unique, quite literally one of a kind content that you can not find anywhere else on the internet. If I am writing about a particular topic (and my topics are very tiny, narrow, small niche focused, all surrounded by one thing and one thing only: how to create Elf wizards and the worlds they live in, then write and publish stories about those Elf wizards, but i go to real world locations to research them for use in the worldbuilding) I am always sure to show first-hand experience (yes, I know Elves and Wizards are not real, so how do I show first hand experience? I am an author who has published138 Fantasy novels featuring Elf wizard main characters, including one with multiple million sales, so I'm teaching from experience how to write and publish, what I have successfully written and published, which again makes my content extremely one of a kind unique and impossible to be found on any other websites, because it is ACTUALLY authentic, ACTUAL original, and an ACTUAL expert). I substantiate my content with first hand evidence (including photos and videos footage taken by me) from my own personal trial and error, along with my very outspoken personal opinions and thoughts about the topic at hand.
-My readers (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves) must be satisfied that they have learned something usually or insightful after reading my content. This is a big priority for me, and also has been, loooooong before Google or any other search engine was invented. I have always had a policy of putting my readers' wants and needs first.
-Unlike many other bloggers, I stick to my area of expertise. I do not chase after topics that are trending. I do not expect search traffic to act as the barometer for choosing topics for my content. Such content is not helpful if they are outside my narrow focused niche. When visitors come to my site, they are immediately served content that is well within my area of expertise. I didn't "choose a topic", I didn't have to, because I simply write what i know. I did not research if my topic had good keywords or search ranking, because heck, I started the blog a decade before search engines at all, let alone Google, was even invented, so, guess what: SEO and the concept of keywords had not been invented yet either. I simply wrote what I wanted to write about for the pure joy of writing about it. can deliver content that is truly helpful to my target audience (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves). I simply write what I know, writing from pure personal experience, writing for the pleasure of the topic, and this makes my articles stand out in leaps and bounds from writers who pick a keyword and try to write circles around it in hopes Google will bless them. And while they stress out over if they will get good enough ranking, I have fun writing about fun things that my readers have fun reading about.
-Many SEO keywords rank very high and many websites chase after those high rank keywords, focusing on the keyword as the end all be all. However these high ranking search engine optimized keywords often are not a good match for the narrow focus of my niche (Elves, Faeries, Unicorns, Wizards, how to create them, and how to build the world's they live in. Thus why my blog is entirely about how to create Elves, Faeries, Unicorns, and Wizards, how to build worlds for them to live in, and how to write lore for them). I mean how many Elf, Faerie, Unicorn, or Wizard creating keywords do you see in high ranked keywords? If I were to go after site traffic by writing blogs around the popular trending, high ranked SEO keywords, such an action would likely negatively impact my website in the long run. Since the Panda update of 2011, Google is known to devalue a site that chases after high ranked keywords. It is better to stick to topics around my narrow focus niche expertise (helping fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves realize their goal of writing and publishing a Fantasy Novel). And so all my articles focus on the site topic (creating Elf wizards and their world and helping fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves realize their goal of writing and publishing a Fantasy Novel). Thus I never even take into consideration the current trending high ranking keywords which may not add niche value for my blog readers (fans and readers of the Fantasy genre who seek to become Fantasy writers themselves).
-I am convinced that the REASON my site is not hit negatively by Google updates, including this September 2023 Helpful Content Update that has decimated so many websites, has nothing specifically to do with my topic/niche, but rather instead is because my content:
In short, my website is full of ACTUALLY HELPFUL CONTENT and doesn't focus on gaming the system by trying to optimize for search engines, and that is in fact EXACTLY what Google stated the HELPFUL CONTENT Update was about. Google said outright when they announced this update was coming, that they were going to start PUNISHING (Google used the word PUNISHING) websites that focused on backlinks, guest posting, keyword stuffing, and optimization over focusing on being ACTUALLY HELPFUL.
I mean, go read Google’s blog and see what they said. They said they were going after sites that used SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION. They said they were going after sites that used GUEST POSTING. They said they were going after sites that BOUGHT BACKLINKS. And now that the Helpful Content Update is here, what sites are hit? EXACTLY the sites Google said it would hit: sites that bought backlinks, sites that focused on guest posting, and sites that put search engine optimization over helping readers.
I really don't think specific topics and niches are being targeted. I think however that some niches were more prone then others to buy backlinks, practice guest posting, and focus on search engines over readers, so those niches got hit harder, but were hit harder because of the scammy blackhat practices NOT because of the niche itself.
I only considered what is it I knew I would want to write about for the rest of my life. The answer? Elves, Faeries, Unicorns, Wizards, how to create them, and how to build the world's they live in. Thus why my blog is entirely about how to create Elves, Faeries, Unicorns, and Wizards, how to build worlds for them to live in, and how to write lore for them.
Started the blog in 1996, post 1 to 3 articles daily, crossed 10k articles published in 2017, and in 2026 it will celebrate its 30th anniversary.
I was right to pick Elves, Faeries, Unicorns, and Wizards as my blog topic because now three decades later, I am still rabidly obsessed with them, still love writing about them daily, and still daily addicted to adding to my blog about them.
And as the blog is my full time job, I have a job that I love doing.
My advice is pick something you are obsessed with, something you have been obsessed with for decades already, something you know you'll still be obsessed with for decades to come, something you will enjoy writing even if it never pays you a penny, and whatever that thing is, that is what your blog topic should be.
Hopefully all this will go towards helping you guys figure out what Google is doing with this update. Good luck with everything.
My site gets 300k to 7million reads per month (depending on season, my content is highly related to holidays to its October ti December that get the high view counts and rest of year the low view counts) and readers stay on my site at an average of 10 minutes per page they are one, and most click through to 5 or more pages per visit and I don't know if I have any backlinks or not, nor do I know how to find out. But I've never paid for anything, not links, not ads, nothing, so I know it is possible to get very high traffic without buying link or ads.
I don't know, it's possible I have organic backlinks, but, I don't know all the SEO stuff very good, so I don’t know how to find out if I have any backlinks or not. I know about keywords and internal links and that's it. Those are the only two things I've used for SEO on my site. I know there's a lot more I could do, but I'm not sure what those things are or how to do them, but also I get enough traffic so, I've not felt a need to branch out into more SEO things.
But you are correct in lack of competition being a factor in this.
I am in fact one of only seven websites that deal with my topic/niche. So its pretty easy for me and the 6 other sites to ALL be ALWAYS ranking on page 1 of Google for ALL of our keywords, due to the severe lack of competition in our very tiny micro niche, niche.
Not dealing with high competition however also means we have very low search volume per keyword. Most keywords in my niche get fewer then a hundred searches per month.
This is why too, I have to rank got TENS OF THOUSANDS of semantic keywords in addition to my primary keywords.
My site sites on page 1 for over 7k primary keywords, spread across 10k pages, each page hand written by me, and each page minimum 3k words but most over 7k words, with me writing 1 to 3 new pages every day since 1996 (my site will soon celebrate its thirtith anniversary) but even with that, those keywords only bring in a few thousand page reads per month.
You are correct, hand written long content alone doesn't do it. It have thousands of pages that though they rank number one, they also only get a dozen or fewer readers per month.
Most of my traffic goes to just 2 pages, both of which as getting several hundred to several thousand reads a day, but these 2 pages are far outside of my niche and are ranking for words not related to my niche at all, thus why they get the traffic.
If I did not have those 2 pages, the rest of my site would probably get under 500 reads a month, even with well over 10k pages.
Also those 2 high traffic pages, rank on page 11 and page 26 of Google at most any given time. So, you don't have to be on page one to get the high traffic either.
My page that sits on page 26 of Google is a keyword that is competitive, so it's likely never going to rank higher, but it also gets 13k page impressions a day and averages 300 to 500 click through a day.
Whereas my 7k pages which are ranking number 1 on page one, get under a hundred impressions each per day and are lucky if they get even 10 clicks a day.
So getting to page one doesn't mean you'll get traffic. And if you do this as an income, you need traffic way more then you need high ranking.
It's very, very, very easy to rank number one page one of Google if you have no competition and are cornering the market of your niche, but getting traffic is enough thing entirely. You have to have something to bring traffic in, if you are going to focus on something almost no one searches for.
But also my page load time is average of 37 seconds and by Google metrics that is very bad, so my page speed is not good, at all. This is due to each page of my site have a dozen to a few hundred images per page, and so the slow load time is waiting for the images to load in.
Again, if I was in a highly competitive niche, this would be very bad. However, because so few people are looking for my niche and the other 6 sites have even longer page load times then mine does, people looking for this niche are generally more willing to wait for the page to load, then the general public would be.
But if I had a niche aimed at the general public, my slow page loads would be a killer and I would want to put priority on speeding them up.
I can get away with slower page loads because of my niche, but, if I was in a high competition niche, I would very much be focusing on getting page speeds increased.
So, with that in mind, I would say page speeds are subjective. Meaning it depends on the expectations of your target audience.
If your niche is photo heavy and your target audience expects long page load times, then page speed is not a big issue. But if your not in a photo heavy niche and/or your target audience is likely to click away in 10 seconds, well then, yeah, page speed becomes important.
So, yeah, I agree, the person they are talking about, likely has a very low competition niche, because those are always mega easy to rank for, but ranking is not the same as actually having traffic. I think some people forget that because they mix up impressions vs clicks.
It's great to be getting lots of impressions on page 1, but if you get no clicks on page one what good is it?
Fortunately I'm dealing with an informational site, and the primary goal is to be a database of information, and thus monetization is not an objective for me, so having my numbers the way they are is fine.
I think, based on my limited knowledge of seo, that either backlinks or page speed could become more important depending on the site's niche and the audience expectations in that niche.
But the thing is, I don't put any effort into either backlinks or page speed at all. My page speed is shitty and I have no clue if anyone links to my site or not, and yet I rank number 1 on page 1 for over 7k keywords, page 2 to 3 for 17k more keywords, and am getting millions of impressions and 300k to 7million clicks per month.
I really do believe it's because my site has been online since 1996 and has over ten thousand articles each one over 2k words long.
My site was using webrings and getting 1k a month traffic a full decade before search engines were even invented, and my site is fifteen years OLDER then Google is.
I think the age of a domain AND the amount of pages it has, with each page internally links to 10+ other pages, does way more for ranking and traffic, then either backlinks or page speeds ever could.
Domain age and tens of thousands of internal links trumps EVERYTHING else in SEO.
**articles:** stopped counting after crossing 10k (ten thousand) in 2017
**Average article length:** 7k (seven thousand words), nothing is under 2k, though only a handful are under 4k, more than 500 pages are over 10k words each, over 200 are over 50k words each, a few dozen are over 100k (yes, one hundred thousand words per page, not that it not a typo), and the longest one is 199k (for reference, a 200 page paperback Harlequin Romance novel is 82k words)... the one with 199k words is also my most trafficked page, having been read (not visited, but actually read, as in visitors stayed on the page for 4 hours or more before leaving) a whopping 30million times since it was published in 2007, this one page alone currently averages around 700 visits per day.
The page you are reading right now has 13,788 words on it.
**Blog age:** started August 1996, it will celebrate 30th anniversary in 2026
**Monthly visitors:** seasonal and fluctuates wildly, average is 300k a month, but can dip to under 10k and my highest month ever was 7million reads in December 2019; my blog was getting over a thousand visitors a month FIFTEEN YEARS BEFORE the invention of search engines and has NEVER used search engine optimization, NEVER catered to overlord Google, has never used marketing, and relies fully 100% on OFFLINE word of mouth of my readers to drive traffic. My readers find out about my blog via the “about the author” page which appears in the backs of my novels - this one page that appears in the backs of all of my (traditionally published paperback) novels is the ONLY marketing that has ever been done for this blog
**Monthly earnings:** seasonal and fluctuates wildly, average is $2k a month, but can dip to under $100 or jump up over $6k; my books are VERY seasonal, as I write a series that features Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and other similar holiday figures as the villains, and so sales of those books spike around the holiday in question (for example, stories about Santa Claws, Lich King of the North, receive a spike in sales near Christmas, resulting in both a spike in traffic to my blog and sales to my Christmas themed books, causes income to spike to it’s highest in December. Whereas there are no holidays in August, so sales to my books and traffic to my blog plummet to their lowest in August.)
**Country:** Maine, USA - we are the oldest, largest, and most trafficked (non-commercial) niche content website in the state of Maine
Other questions that were asked to other in comments throughout this thread:
>tell me what hosting you are using that can handle this traffic, also, which theme you are using ?
Originally a free host that no longer exists today. Moved to WordPress after that, but in 2013, they told me my site had too many pages and was getting too much traffic for their servers to handle. The servers crashed a few times a month, and it got to the point where my site was offline more days a month then it was online, so I switched to SBI in 2013 so that I could have a dedicated server, and I've not had any off time again since.
I am not using any themes. I write my own code.
>How many hours a week do you work on it?
I am a career writer. This is my full-time job. When I'm not writing new novels, I'm writing articles for my blog.
I work on a schedule of segments: three a day, four hours each, with a two hour break between each one, and a 15 minute break every hour.
I'm writing full time as a career, so I treat it like a 9-5 type job. I write in 3 writing sessions that are 4 hours long each, with two, 2-hour long breaks in between, and a 15 minute break every 45 mins of each 4 hour session.
Each of the writing sessions will be a different project. I have a dozen or more manuscripts in various stages of drafting/editing/revision on any given day and I rotate between them.
So, it typically looks something like this:
Draft A may be the 5th revision of a novella and Draft B may be the first vomit draft of a short story and Draft C may be the 3rd edit of a novel. Draft D may be me spending a few hours on Canva batch making a month's worth of book covers instead of working on a draft. Draft E may be writing this week's blog posts. What project I am working on changes from one session to the next, one day to the next, but the hours remain the same.
I am the only person working on the entire site. I have never hired any outside coders or writers.
>All indexed pages?
I use a massive network of internal links to connect all of my pages together and use no index and no crawl tags on most of them, to deliberately force search engines to NOT index my pages.
I have around 2k pages that I allow search engines to crawl and index, and those are all indexed.
Anyone wishing to access the over 8k deliberately not indexed pages can only reach them via a system of links which are set up in a "game format". By that I mean, only readers of my novels would know where to look for the links, which lead on a scavenger hunt Easter egg trail through my site. Sort of like a "choose your own adventure book", but not quite. Basically the 8k unindexed pages can only be found by viewers who are willing to take the time to solve clues to find the hidden links (they are not highlighted or underlined and just look like normal text) and follow the trail to read the "secret" lore pages.
The Easter egg hunt link system was put in place back in the 1990s, long before search engines existed, and originally was a way for people to find pages, because search engines had not been invented yet and if you didn't have some sort of convoluted linking system there was no way for readers to find your pages.
After the invention on search engines and the eventual invention of Google, I decided to just leave the old hide and seek linking system in place, and added no index and no crawl tags to all the pages in my huge internal link network, so that those pages would continue to only be accessible by my most devoted and die hard fans.
This is one of the reasons I have an astronomically high click through rate, a hugely higher than average for my niche amount of return visitors, and page view times that are rarely under 10 minutes and often over an hour.
And apparently all of this internal linking and ctr and viewer engagement is why I rank number 1 page 1 on Google for more than 17k keywords. My site keeps readers engaged for long amounts of time and Google apparently likes that.
>Can I ask what generates the earnings? What is the mode of your earnings?
Product sales. I am the author of 138 traditionally published paperback novels (mostly Fantasy and Romance, 75k to 150k words per book), 423 self-published novellas ebooks and paperback (all one series, Cozy Fantasy, each book 20k to 60k words), and over 2,000 short stories published in over 200 different print magazines (Horror, SciFi, and Fantasy, each story 5k to 10k words). My blog is an author website, most of my books are available on Amazon, so I monetize my blog via Amazon affiliates, to link to my books. Income is a combination of royalties from book sales and affiliate paydays.
>How many visitors you have from organic traffic?
All are organic. I have never bought ads, never done newsletters, don't have an email list, and have never bought backlinks. The ONLY “advertisement” that my blog even exists, is that it is mentioned in the back of my books on the “about the author page” where I tell readers they can find not only more of my books for sale, but also they can find more then 2k free to read online short stories from the same series, all free on the blog, each short story appearing as it’s own blog post (thus WHY so many blog posts are 5k to 10k words long), and that if they are interested in character art made by me, or want to find out more lore about the characters or the world, all of that is on the blog as well, AND if they want to learn how to write stories like I do, create characters like mine, build world like mine, or learn how to edit and publish novels, novellas, and short stories, my blog also features more than 2k articles on how to do those things as well. This one mention to appear in the back page of all of my books, drives ALL of my traffic to my blog, resulting in I have no need for search engines, Google, Bing, backlinks, paid ads, or anything else.
>I assume you’ve gone really niche with your site?
The bulk of my content is character profiles, character backstories, world lore, ect, about the characters and world of my novella series. Which is why most of my blog posts average at 7k words long. Each one is fully in depth lore stories for fans of my series to read to get more lore for the franchise.
Basically, my site is a hub for screaming fanboys and fangirls of my characters to find out anything and everything they could ever want to know about my characters, my world, and how I go about writing, editing, and publishing it.
Sooo… if you are not a rabid fan of my novels, you probably would have no reason to visit my site at all, because it IS an author homepage after all, and if you are not a fan of my work, then, likely nothing on my site will interest you at all.
So, very narrow focused niche, very branded low competition keywords, very easy to rank number 1 page 1 of every search engine for those 17k keyword because they are brand specific to me and my franchise.
>What percent affiliate vs ads? Are you with Google adsense or which platform?
While I do have Google AdSense, it brings in under $100 a month, most months. Though a couple of times it reached $900.
Amazon affiliate income is also minimal.
The bulk of income is from neither affiliates or ads, and comes from direct book sales. All my books are available on Amazon KDP and I earn 70% royalties off the cover price per book sold. I sell on average around 2k paperbacks, 150 hardcovers, and a dozen ebooks each month.
>Did you look into why ads were hurting your site speed so much?
I have noticed this same issue.
Before adding Google AdSense to my site, page loads were under 5 seconds. After adding Google AdSense to my site, page loads now average a whopping 37 seconds AND Google added a "page shifting" warning/penalty to over a thousand of my pages, citing that pages jump and shift when videos load… only problem with that penalty is there are no videos on my site at all, the videos which are causing the penalty are Google's own AdSense ad videos!
I'm debating if I should just remove AdSense or not, as it brings on under a hundred dollars each month, and I'm not sure that chump change is worth the 37 second page loads and page shifting penalties that come with Google ads.
And on that note... let's take a look at the big issue that I have with Google:
Context: I'm am author, my site is an author homepage. I have published 138 Fantasy and Romance novels since 1978, including bestsellers which have sold multiple million copies per title. I know nothing of SEO and am not in the SEO industry. I do everything on my site. All coding, all writing, is all me. I have never bought ads or backlinks, I have never hired an seo person or marketer. The only advertising for my site, is an about the author page in the back of each novel (traditionally published paperbacks not self published ebooks) which states to visit my author home page to find backstories of the characters and world lore of the franchise.
>When you post a new article do you get instant traffic? How much traffic do you get when you publish a new post?
It depends on a lot of factors, including the topic, the season of the year, the time of day, whether I share a link or not, where I share the link to, and how fast or slow Google is at indexing it.
As Google crawls my site about every 4 hours, usually the new page is indexed in 3 to 5 hours after I publish it, though sometimes it takes a few days, sometimes a few weeks, but about 80% to 90% of the time it takes under 5 hours for a page to be indexed.
But how much traffic varies widely. One page may take weeks to get even a single view, in spite of fast indexing, because it was a low competition keyword on a topic that isn't currently trending; while an page may get several hundred views an hour after publishing even though it is days before indexing, because I posted it on social media and it was a hot trending topic at that moment.
Overall, MOST of my traffic (over 80%) comes from social media shares, not related to me sharing a link, but rather instead from one of my readers sharing a link. Every page on my site has a set of "share this on…" buttons for Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Reddit, Blogger, Pinterest, and about 40 or 50 other social media sites. It's an app I added the html code of to my global headers, so it automatically embeds the buttons on every page, and when the user clicks the button, it automatically creates a card with link and image and blurb for them to post to their social medias.
Also I provide an html code (that I wrote) on each page, with a message that says "If you enjoyed this page, and would like to share it with others, just place this code on your blog or website!"
And as I run short story writing challenges and post daily writing prompts, each of those pages has a similar message, that reads: "Did you use this prompt to write a short story? Are you sharing that story online? Please put a link to this page at the end of your story, so your readers can join the challenge and write their own stories too!"
I get a shit ton load of backlinks from fanfiction bloggers on Tumblr and Reddit, because they use my writing prompts and put the link to the prompt at the end of their story when they publish the story online. This accounts for more than 60% of all traffic my site relieves.
And because it's a daily, write a short story every day, type of writing challenge with me posting new writing prompts daily, I get a lot of repeating viewers who just have my site bookmarked and return daily for the next day's writing challenge.
So, my site is getting huge amounts of organic traffic that does NOT come from search engines at all. And for that reason I do not bother with SEO at all.
The thing is, my site is providing things that my readers crave, crave with rabid addiction, so they just come back every day, without even going to a search engine to look for me.
And because I'm not focused on using my site to make money, my site doesn't annoy readers with auto playing video ads or pop-ups or anything else.
Also, I do the writing challenges myself, so my site has hundreds of short stories I wrote also on it. Those range from 5k to 20k words long each, plus I have several free to read online novellas and novels on my site (thus why some of my pages have over 100k words to a single page) and so people are often staying on the page for 3 or 4 or 5 or more hours to read the novels.
And because readers find my site incredibly useful, providing a huge database of more than 10k how to articles for Sword and Sorcery pulp fiction short story writers, they just keep coming back, because I have so much useful to them content for them to keep returning every day for weeks, months, even years on end.
So, this is why my pages get the amounts of views they get, and why they get them hours after publishing each post, even before Google has a chance to index them.
So, you definitely want to be providing useful content that your target audience wants, needs, and us willing to return on their own for, if you want to be getting traffic instantly after a new page is published.
>I have an older site that stopped getting traffic but ill post every day just to keep it active and ill get maybe 5 visits an hour, sometimes the new post will get a few visits not much. I have a niche bnews webstie not affiliate marketing like most of you guys.
My site is not for making money. I'm not an affiliate marketer either. I also don't know much about SEO, so I don’t have any advice on that part. My site was started in 1996, so is almost thirty years old, is 15 years older than Google, and was around a full decade before the concept of monetization of website was even thought of, so, my site has never existed to be a source of income.
But yeah, an old site like yours, especially one that is still daily updated, should be very high ranking and getting huge amounts of traffic, so I would assume that you have either gotten slapped with a Google penalty or maybe have no index meta data in place that you were unaware of or maybe your topics are too varied and random so not focused enough on a single niche or maybe there is a series negative SEO thing going on that you didn't realize had happened… or any one of dozens of other issues.
I would definitely recommend you look in your policy center tab on your Google dashboard to find out is you have a sitewide penalty, because when a site is getting full zero traffic, that is often the reason. So you should rule that out before looking for other issues. If you have a penalty, Google will tell you exactly what the problem is and give you links to their help pages on how to fix it. So, fixing the penalty will likely fix any other issues your site has as well.
>Im wondering if that is a sitewide penalty when you dont get much traffic on a 14 year old website.
Google tells you if you have a penalty. They will have sent you an email telling you exactly what the penalty is and how to fix it. If for some reason you missed seeing the email or accidentally deleted it or it got sent to junk mail or something, the same info in the email will also be in your messages in your Google dashboard, and if your Google dashboard if you click the link marked "policy center" you will find a list of each page with a penalty with a link to submit it for manual review once you've fixed the issue.
A site wide penalty will drastically decrease traffic. My site normally gets 300k visits/page reads/clicks (not impressions, which is much, much higher, in the millions, as I have an 11.6% ctr), but suddenly in 2020, it dropped overnight to only 340 visits that month, for a nearly 100% decrease in traffic. Couldn't figure out why. Turns out, my site got a sitewide penalty accusing it of containing sexual content. However my site is a kid safe, child friendly site aimed for school teachers to teach children how to write. There is nothing even remotely sexual on any level whatsoever on my site, so I just couldn't figure out what the heck happened.
Turns out, as I eventually found out later, what happened was a local to me (my same town) church group, bought spam backlinks, 200k of them, from a porn linking seo site, and used the anchor tags "child porn rape cosplay" for the links. Well, I didn't know the backlinks were there, because I have no clue how to even find out if I have backlinks.
Now, like most people, I thought Google ignored spam porn backlinks, so I was shocked to learn that those anchor tags on Russian porn sites were what caused the penalty, however, I was able to get in contact with an actual person, via contacting Google devs via their Twitter account, and when they (Google employees, one of whom included specifically Jon Muller who was very helpful and active in helping with this situation) manually checked and then messaged me back to tell me what happened, that is what they told me!
They said they reviewed the situation and Google had received 51 manually submitted reports from self proclaimed "concerned parents" citing that my site was aimed at teaching minors how to write child porn! They said no one checked the reports and that the report bot had just automatically tagged my site as a porn site, without any actual human checking to see if that was true or not.
They said, because there were two hundred thousand backlinks all using the anchor tag "child porn rape cosplay" that it had caused to crawler bot to classify my site as a topical authority in child porn!
However, the manual investigation revealed that the ispn of the 51 reports was the same ispn that had purchased the 200k backlinks AND when I used Google maps to get the GPS location of that ispn, it turned out to be the church my abutting next door neighbor attends!
In confronting the minister of the church, he stated he had authorized his deacons to buy the backlinks and file the Google reports. He said they "had to" because one of the lesson plans on my site taught how to respectfully write LGBTQA+ characters.
But yeah, don't listen to people who tell you spam porn backlinks don't cause negative effects, because they DO when they are accompanied with penalty inducing anchor tags and the vindictive small minded people who bought said links also filing reports to Google.
In any case, it took well over a year for Google to have actual humans go through EVERY SINGLE PAGE of my website that has more than 10k pages, and confirm that yes, there was not a single sexual thing on my site. And so for over a year, my site was behind Google’s SafeSearch 18+ screen, and did not show up in general search results at all, resulting in, instead of 300k+ visitors a month, I was getting under just one hundred views a month! Even though my site has over ten thousand pages! Being shoved behind SafeSeach by a porn penalty almost made my site invisible to searchers!
So yeah, a penalty slapped on your site is going to have massive impact on your traffic, so yes, definitely go to your Google account and check the policy center tab to see if there are any penalties listed, because those do shut down traffic fast and will require you submit your site for manual review in order to get it removed.
I love that I drove ChatGPT insane and all it does is babble gibberish fan love for BoomFuzzy now.
I have trained ChatGPT to talk just like me and I think it's wonderful, LOL!
Speaking of BoomFuzzy... let's fan gush over him some more... here he is:
However, my site DOES NOT load quickly or smoothly, and, while SOME of my site is mobile friendly, large portions of my site is NOT mobile friendly and probably never will be, just because my site is so image/photo/graphic heavy. So, ChatGPT did get some information wrong there, but, over all pretty accurate for the most part.
Also, what is "TechArticle" schema? Not sure what ChatGPT is yapping about there.
You know what? Let's ask it.
What do you want to become?
What did you do today to step closer to that goal?
Whatever you do, be your best at it!
And remember to have yourself a great and wonderfully glorious day!
Evil men go out of their way to try to drive a person to suicide.
Are you an evil man?
Are you sure you're not?
How many people have YOUR hate filled words killed?
Next time you go to do a mean thing to a fellow human, stop and really think about the consequences of your actions.
Did you ever notice how every one has a story to tell about me, yet not one of them ever speaks the truth?
What lies has YOUR gossiping tongue spread about me?
Did you know...
October 16, 2006, bomb blew up my house because of YOUR lies.
August 8, 2013, the house which replaced the one the bomb blew up, was driven over by a backhoe.
November 14, 2013, my 8 month old infant son was murdered because of your lies.
November 14, 2013, I was beaten up, paralized for 5 months, spent 18 weeks relearning to walk, I'm now crippled for the rest of my life, because of YOUR lies.
Are you proud of what you have done?
Enjoy your eternity in Hell. You earned it. You've certainly worked hard for it.
If you have any information about any of these events, please call FBI Agent Andy Drewer at 207-774-9322