New AdSense Project – Progress Report

Affiliate TortoiseIt has been a hugely busy week for my offline work, and I can see it remaining like that for some time to come. So I was glad that I managed to get my new blog project that I discussed in my last post started over the previous weekend.

I just thought I would share a few details of what I’ve been doing so that it makes more sense in forthcoming progress reports.

What am I Trying to Achieve?

Well my initial aim for the project was to try and increase my AdSense earnings from the current slow trickle to something more satisfying. I also needed to try and do this without significantly increasing my online workload. I simply don’t have the additional time because of my other commitments.

What Project Did I Come up With?

Well I brainstormed several ideas using Micro Niche Finder, considered mini-sites, blogs, pseudo blogs etc. Eventually I decided to proceed with an idea I had been toying with for some months after finding a very nice .com domain name for it.

Without giving the niche away, it is basically a review blog, monetized both with AdSense and Amazon. It is fairly competitive and needs a lot of content before it gains any credibility, and I will also have to develop a pretty good blog community for the same reason. These things do go against my original goals to some extent, as they will need a lot of work. However, it is a niche that I love, and which takes up a considerable part of my leisure time already, so I can treat it as a long term project that I’m unlikely to lose interest in.

Strategy – Re-published Content

One of my strategies to mitigate the large amount of work required was to generate a proportion of my content from reviews already published on article directories such as Ezine and others. This is perfectly legitimate so long as you carefully follow their re-publishing guidelines, and retain full author credit, linking etc.

My main concern was that re-published content would not rank well in Google SERPs simply because it is duplicate content already indexed and published elsewhere. I thought this may take quite some time to prove as I have other new projects still in the Google sandbox several months after launch, despite being backlinked from various locations.

This turned out not to be the case, and I suspect it is because I also added AdSense for search to the new blog. I had wanted to use AdSense for Search in any case to maximize my AdSense impressions but noticed that after only a few hours of the domain being registered and the AdSense for Search code being in place that I was already indexed in Google!

I suppose it makes sense if you think about it. How could AdSense for Search work if it doesn’t index your site?

Anybody else experienced this? I’ve added the Search code to the sandboxed site I mentioned earlier to see if it was just a coincidence.

Initial Progress

I managed to get the general layout pretty much as I wanted over last weekend. I went with a very simple free WP theme and added the following plugins to help with monetization and layout.

  • AdSense Optimizer – to assist with ad placement and compliance with AdSense policy
  • AdSense on Top – which works in conjunction with AO to give an AdSense link banner across the top of each page
  • Iframe Embedder – to stop WP from messing up Amazon Iframe code
  • Tiny MCE Advanced – to enhance the editor toolbar, mainly to quickly add tables
  • Special Text Boxes – to neatly format multiple reviews within the same post

I have initially completed two review pages (one re-published and one written myself) and have a couple in draft awaiting completion.

Having noticed that the site had been indexed so quickly, I did some tests using Scroogle to see where they ranked. It is encouraging to see that the review page with the re-published content ranked as well as my own content. Not high in the results, I might add, but you wouldn’t expect that at this stage anyway.

I will probably continue to add a fifty/fifty mix of new and re-published content for the time being. When the site gains visitors and I have built up some sense of community, I already have the forms in place for people to add their own reviews, which will again hopefully help to keep the workload manageable.

That’s about the size of it for my progress so far, but I’ll be sure to provide updates as the site develops.

15 thoughts on “New AdSense Project – Progress Report

  1. Hey Des,

    Thanks for the update on adsense Project. I have heard adsense works great on review sites.

    Looking forward to see your progress.

    Thanks for sharing this great Post.

    .-= Dev | Technshare´s last blog ..Technshare Monthly Report 3: May 2010 =-.

  2. No problem Dev. I’ve a feeling it will be a case of slow progress (hence the tortoise!), but hopefully over time I can build up some useful income from the blog.

  3. Thanks for the update.
    Well, you are right, its hard to find time to work on the blog when there are commitments. But still, we try to find time to work on our passion.
    Keep up the good work. Looking forward to another post.


    • Hi Adam,
      I’ll certainly keep plugging away! I firmly believe that every little piece of content we create helps towards our future income.

      Thanks for dropping by!

  4. I think it’s great using a niche you love, really does make it easier to put in those hours. I’ve been thinking about doing more with Amazon now too so I’ll be interested to see how that side of things works out for you.
    .-= Ruth – Web Career Girl´s last blog ..Finding the Balance Between New Content and Marketing =-.

    • Hi Ruth,
      I agree. Why not use up all the niches you love writing about before moving on to other stuff? It makes things so much more enjoyable.

      I’ve now got two sites which will feature Amazon links to a great extent. I look forward to reporting great success! :-)

  5. Am very green when it come to adsense but I now intend to follow this project and see how it goes.
    Where did you learn about the adsense blogs?

    Dennis’s last blog ..Internet Marketing – Week 16

    • Hi Dennis,
      I’ll certainly keep you updated on my AdSense results with this site and my others that carry AdSense.

      I have to admit I’m far from an AdSense expert myself, but rather than learning specifically about AdSense blogs, I have picked up quite a lot over time about ad placement, colour schemes etc. These are very important to results, and the WP plugins I mentioned can help immensely with this.

      • Very interesting find re: indexing speed and the search bar/adsense. I’ve read that one other time, it just finally “sank in.” Great tip.

        I don’t think the CTR on a search bar, however, will be nearly as high as a block of AdSense, garish as it may sound.

        The double-click thru needed, similar to a link unit, doesn’t yield a very high CTR.

        It will be interesting to see your results, however, and I wish you all the best.
        JamestheJust on Elance´s last blog post ..Up Against A Wall – Round Two Of The Aaron Wall Interview At The Average Genius

        • Hi James,
          I would have to try the Google Custom Search/Indexing thing on a few more projects before I could call it any more than a theory. I did try it on another site which firmly refuses to index, and it didn’t work with that one I’m afraid!

          I take your point on the Google search bar, I will have to keep a close eye on how that performs.

  6. Dom

    Don’t only focus on how to make money but also focus on how to make your content an apple to your readers eye.

    adsense consultant
    Dom´s last blog post ..WIRED Magazine Finally Releases My Interview – August 2010

    • Hi Dom,
      I couldn’t agree more. The whole focus of this new site is to provide lots a good quality reviews. Hence my thoughts on it being a long build over a period of time before I see much return.

      Thanks for dropping by.

  7. If your domain had some type of authority right off the bat, you could probably rank w/ re-published content, however, if you’re trying to rank a new website, it is definitely in your best interest to re-write the content in your own words.

    …trust me…search engines will love you for it! :)

    • Hi,
      in this particular case it isn’t really possible to re-write the content. I think the benefit of plenty of content for my visitors will be the main thing, even if I have to use my own original content in order to get the traffic in the first place.

      Repeat visits will be a vital part of this one, so the depth and quality of the content are key.

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