So I’ve been doing IM for the past 3 years and 5 months full-time. I guess different marketer has different experience, but from what I’ve experienced so far, I could pretty much answer the above’s question with: No, you CAN’T.
I (and I’m sure a lot of other marketers as well) have realized this fact long ago. On September last year, I did said in my post “We live from Google while fighting it at the same time” which pretty much sum all the problems all marketers have with G today.
There are only simple 2 facts:
1. G wants to provide it’s user the best result. The job would normally be easier since all it has to do is counting (natural *cough* *cough*) links to a certain page for a particular keyword and it’be pretty much set.
2. We (the IMer generation from 2000′s) took a mission of utilizing this fact and build unnatural links (call it White/Grey/Black hat, it’s all the same for G) to make our pages pop on G first page.
G, who’re afraid of being left out by its user for providing trash content on its first page, start the campaign against us. Meanwhile, on the IMer side, people keep looking for new tricks to “fool” G. It leads to a long battle, but the winner is pretty much set.
We could try smart-ass tricks or using expensive software/services, but one thing that will never change is we play on their field and they’re the one who set the RULES. It’s pretty much game over for us SEOer. The one who keep making money from this are:
- The IM Gurus who are selling the illusion of SEO. They keep rambling about “G loves this” and “G loves that” or “SEO for the new age” or anything like that. Whenever new update comes up and sites got shot down, they always ready with the “brand new course” to save the day and empty your pocket.
- The SEO service providers: backlinker, blog network, article submitter, EDU/GOV link seller etc. There’s no end to them and I guess it’s because their “market” (us) is big and quite easy to be fooled.
I build my sites based on SEO as well. That means years of adding unique content around particular keywords and endless backlinking via various methods: blog network, article directories, profiles, comment, EDU/GOV, etc. My main site got around 600 UV/day, then after the Panda, it dropped to around 400 UV/day. Just now, after they shot down BMR, SEOLV Elite, and ALN (no, I don’t use any of them. My guess is they also shot down AMA, which I’ve been using for years), it dropped again to around 100 UV/day.
Well, for better or worse, I’ve seen this coming long ago so I didn’t really surprised when it happens. For that reason too, I’ve been experimenting with paid traffic (which I assume is more reliable) for a while now, but due to limited fund, I only able to test one at a time.
After my adwords account got closed on December, I’ve been looking for other way to generate traffic. My mission are:
1. Build an authority site.
I still have to learn a lot in this matter. The traffic will probably should come from YouTube, Facebook, forums, or other blogs. Guest posting has been pain-in-the-ass since it’s quite difficult to get a popular blog owners to agree for it. Some blogs even charge money if you want to guest post on their blog. I always look for blog under under 1million in Alexa (less will be even more difficult) and so far only manage to score 3 guest posts.
It’s a long term process I guess. I also need to build FB fan page, twitter page, etc.
2. Try other paid traffic
I’m currently experimenting on PPV to sell CPA offer. This kind of traffic can be used to build a list, but it’ll be hard to track which one really convert and not, so for the time being I’m focusing on CPA offer.
Having ran multiple offers for the past few months, I think I’ve found which affiliate and ppv network I could trust and decided to stick with them. I said this because (I think) I’ve experienced stealing by a ppv network. It was a campaign that I ran and generate quite good conversion rate (the LP even has about 40%) CTR. Then, suddenly I didn’t get much traffic anymore. Usually I spent $5-$10 easily (depend on my caps) and it burned down quickly (as it should be), but all of a sudden, the traffic is “capped” below 100/day and I spend “conveniently” around $1.4 per day. I add a bunch more keywords and nothing happened. I asked the PPV network and they told me to raise my bid. My bid were standard and if I raised it it’ll be overpriced, besides, there is no data of other bidder on the bid info. Nevertheless, I raise it anyway, and of course, nothing happen.
The only thing I can think is they capped my budget at $1.4/day instead of $10 that I set, then “sell” the rest of targeted traffic directly to the merchant. I just know that this could happen after reading a blog of an affiliate manager of a big PPV network.
Well, lesson learned. I’d just burn the rest of my fund (which will take a while since I only spend $1.4/day) and never use them again.