Survey Chris has now been live for a little less than 3 months now, and the results from this month are showing the blogs potential (it’s still early mind you). If you have missed the first two months, you can see month 1 and month 2.
I already touched on my 1KBlog case study when I first published – How to make money with survey companies, but for those that missed it I’m building a blog that generates at least $1,000 per month or more and I’ll be documenting the process here on my blog. Now let’s get into what I did this last month on Survey Chris, what the results where and what they mean.
SurveyChris.Com Month 3 Report
First I will get into what I did for July on SurveyChris.com, how much I earned, then look at how many subscribers I gained and traffic I received. After that, we’ll look at plans for next month, such as the SurveyChris Kindle Book, content and SEO strategies.
Month 3 Execution
The goal of July was to increase organic traffic and referral traffic not from this blog. I focused on creating content and some link building to get it there. Like I have mentioned in the past monthly reports, the UpFuel traffic will affect the numbers a bit.
However, the referral traffic from UpFuel alone won’t be enough to hit $1,000 per month. Also, my true goal is to reach $50,000 per year in earnings from Survey Chris.
The goal of this $1K blog case study is not to prove that I can build a blog from scratch up to $1,000 per month, since I already have multiple times. The goal of this case study is to show you every step that I am doing, so you can use the lessons to build sites of your own.
Content Created in Month 3:
In July, I only published 2 survey reviews, one was positive and the other was negative (and published on the 30th). I would like to post more reviews, but since I am actually using these sites until I am able to cash out, it isn’t the quickest process. (Naturally few if any of my competitors are actually using the service they write reviews for).
A good thing though is that the positive review that I posted is focused on a site that has a ton of monthly searches, and plenty of long tail keywords to take advantage of. The site is called Swagbucks, and the review I wrote for it ended up being 2,800 words.
On top of that, I wrote 2 articles on how to best use Swagbucks, each one being over 1,000 words. I used those 2 articles in combination with the main one in a silo. Check out this article if you’d like to read more about the silo effect in SEO
As for the negative review I wrote, I don’t really make money off of those. The reason for writing negative reviews though is to steer people away from companies I’ve had a bad experience with which of course will help with building trust with my audience.
Blog Posts Published:
For July, I really stepped up in blog posts for Survey Chris. I was able to get 8 of them out during the month, with the majority coming at the end of the month.
These articles are all long tail keyword based. There are a couple of ways to come up with ideas for blog posts based on long tail keywords. You can use Long Tail Pro (this link gives you 30%) and/or SEMRush to type in keywords, get longer tail keywords and their monthly searches. I used both of these products, along with a feature of SEMRush’s competition analysis to see every single keyword my top 5 competitors are ranking for.
I exported all of these keywords into an excel sheet, and did some data sorting to get all the keywords into groups under similar topics. I would then jot down ideas of articles to write based on these grouped keywords. I ended up with 48 articles that I can write, all of which I already know what they are about and I know people are searching for.
I then pick the highest searched for long tail keyword out of the group, and write the article focused on that.
Using this strategy has given me a huge amount of articles that I can write to bring in qualified organic traffic, since each post originally started with keywords taken from my competitors. And since I have a long list of keywords, along with some jotted down notes, it doesn’t take long at all to research and write these articles.
One thing that I noticed while doing this was that my very top competitors don’t have many posts that aren’t specifically focused on one survey website to review. So while they are solely focused on reviews, I will be posting reviews along with articles that hit on keywords that they aren’t ranking for.
Unfortunately for this month, I did not create any new videos for the Survey Chris Youtube Channel. I am hoping to get back to it this month, since YouTube has been sending traffic and the links on the videos are converting.
Here is an update on the videos I do have up, with the first number being where they were in June and the second being where they are now:
I am using Better Links Pro to keep track of how these videos are converting on referral links compared to the blog, email and a couple other sources. You can download our free version of Better Links here if you’d like to link to affiliate offers on your website that you’d like to track. You can always upgrade to pro later if you’re more serious about building your business.
Overall these videos are converting pretty well, with an average of 18.8% but of course I have a relatively limited amount of data (with more views I can get a more accurate picture). This is the second highest converting source. The first is the free eBook I give out when people sign up for the mailing list.
Month 3 Income Results
Here is the income split by survey company. To keep it simple and be able to better line up my results with what I did for the month I’m tracking what I earned in the specific month and not what checks I’ve cashed or Paypal deposits I’ve received within that month:
- CashCrate: $35.73
- Opinion Outpost: $16.60
- Ipsos i-Say: $18.60
- iPoll: $5.40
- Vindal Research: $3.90
- Swagbucks: $26.43
- Fusion Cash: $1.75
- PineCone Research: $4.25
This all combines for a monthly total of $112.66
For June, I made $100.63
I made $12.03 more in July that I did June. While this is very small growth, and a long ways from where I plan to be, it is showing some good signs.
Month 3 Email List Growth
Month 3 new email subscribers: 24 (after unsubscribes which I didn’t previously show in the last two reports)
Like I always say, building an email list is the best way to get and own your traffic. I have over 50,000 people on my email lists via Aweber but when you start a new website it’s always 0 subscribers to begin with. This is my source of highest converting traffic for Survey Chris, with the free eBook being the best and the emails I send out converting the 3rd best at 16.67%.
I have been using Aweber ($1 trial link) to build out an auto responder of the best survey sites. This is traffic that I own and converts well.
Also, since these emails are auto responders, I don’t have to do any work once a visitor has subscribed to make money. I simply have to build out more auto responders and get more email subscribers.
Month 3 Traffic Results
The traffic to the blog was only about 4o visitors more than it was last month, but this month was different in that I didn’t have a giant spike in traffic from this blog.
This is a good sign, and shows that we are on the right path to getting more traffic from organic rather than referrals from this blog.
In June, we had 65 visitors from organic traffic, and in July we had 170. That’s some decent growth, but I really think it is just the beginning. Especially since the site is beginning to crawl up the second page of google for some keywords, and should be on the first page for a lot of keywords in August.
While SEMRush doesn’t pick up all of the keywords and organic traffic we are getting, I do think that what they show is a good sign. In June, they did not list any of our keywords for our articles, and now we are climbing up page 2.
Plans For Month 4
New Kindle Book For Free (Limited Time):
While I was hoping to get the Kindle book out in July, I didn’t end up finishing it until a few days before the end of the month. This means that it will be launching in August, and hopefully driving in not only more revenue, but more traffic to the site. Next month I will be able to recap what I did for the kindle book launch and marketing. This will be one of those income sources that people could consider cheating since I’ll be releasing the book under my name but long term the website income will dwarf the Kindle income. If you’d like it for free sign up for the Survey Chris email list (limited time deal).
As for SEO, I will continue writing and checking off the list of articles I have that are long tail keyword based. This should start being a good foundation for ranking in google, since I’m writing more extensive articles than my competition.
These articles will have a much easier time ranking in Google, since my competition isn’t focusing on articles. This doesn’t mean that I’m not going to write reviews, it is just another strategy to grow traffic for Survey Chris.
We have also started to execute a bigger scale SEO plan, that I will discuss in the future once we have results from it.
Blog Content Strategy:
As I’ve mentioned, I did extensive long tail keyword research to come up with tons of articles to write. August will focus on getting through as many of those as possible, while also putting out as many survey website reviews. I expect to see a lot of growth in August.
Video Content Strategy:
While I didn’t produce any videos this last month, I am going to get back to it in August. I will at least be doing 3 from the past reviews we already have up on the site.
Data Tracking and Implementation:
After looking at the referral link data, since I use Better Links Pro to split test (pro feature not in free version), I discovered that almost all of the survey companies that provide their own links barely payout. I split test between Swagbucks in house referral system to the company we have an affiliate relationship with, and realized that while I made $.23 cents through Swagbucks own referral, I made $11.75 from that company.
This is just one of many reasons why you should pick up Better Links Pro so you can split test your affiliate links to determine which one pays out best.
There were a few other instances like this that I noticed and changed, so it should end up with the site making more money in August.
Overall Month 3 Assessment
Overall, I will be honest and say that I wish July had shown more growth but that’s the humbling experience of building a brand new website. I’ve made hundreds of thousands of dollars building, running, buying and selling websites. No matter how experienced you are when you build a new website we all start from zero. Unfortunately Google makes the first several months a little slow with their sandbox, but we’ll get out eventually. I can’t be completely disappointed with the minimal growth, especially since we’ve been making strides with organic search. As long as I keep up the content production and my long term SEO plan, I should be able to start seeing some first page rankings in Google, which will dramatically increase my traffic and the bottom line.
Full Disclosure: I have hired someone to help me out with some SurveyChris.com blog articles and reviews. Sure I could do absolutely everything myself, but I have other businesses I need to be focused on as well.