Niche Site Journal for January 2013

My last post on my Niche Site experience was almost three months ago. A lot has happened since then not relating to the Niche Site.

As many of you know, my wife gave birth to our first child and my wife, we ran a successful Kickstarter campaign and printed our first comic book.

In other words, we have been insanely busy.

This is why I hope to master niche sites. The opportunity to work on my art and spend time with my family without worrying about money would be a dream come true. That is why I am trying to make this work and build a passive income portfolio.

Quick Lesson

Make sure you know why you want to make passive income through Niche Sites. It makes the long hours and lonely nights more bearable.

Thank You to

All of you commented on Niche Site Journal articles and had shown me people are interested in these posts. For that, I wanted to thank you and hope you share your Niche Site experiences with me.

I moved all the articles and links to this new site away from This means everyone’s comment is still on the other site because I am not moving them over manually.

The Numbers

Time Breakdown: 0 Hours (Total to date: 111 hours)

I did no work on the site. I did check the traffic numbers every once in awhile and updated the site to the current WordPress version once, but nothing that took more than 5 minutes.

Costs: $0 (Total to date $351.30)

Spent no money.

Search Engine Ranking:

The Keyword I am trying to rank for is “Maternity Belts”. I used Market Samurai to get the following numbers.

Market Samurai image

From Market Samurai Ranking Checker

I don’t know what to make of these figures.  It looks like my position with Google was doing well. It got as low as 17th position and then jumped back up to the 30′s. This could be because I wasn’t adding content, or some other sites have continued to work at SEO and I stopped. I am not sure.

For some reason, I am not ranked with Bing or Yahoo, but on Jan 17th I jumped to the 9th spot in Bing, then disappeared. Not sure if Market Samurai has a glitch or the search engines just do weird stuff? I am still trying to figure it all out.


Here are my traffic numbers (from Google Analytic) for the site from Nov 1, 2012 – Jan 31, 2013.

  • Visits: 81
  • Unique Visitors: 49
  • Pageviews: 318
  • Pages / Visit: 3.93
  • Avg. Visit Duration: 00:06:22
  • Bounce Rate: 37.04%
  • % New Visits: 56.79%

Chart from Analytics

Nov 1, 2012 – Jan 31, 2013

Traffic Source

Traffic Source

Traffic Sources from Nov 1, 2012 – Jan 31, 2013

Income: about $.09 (Total to date $1.59)

Since I last posted my numbers (November 17, 2012), I made $.09.


Why no income?

As it goes in this experiment, I have put in a total of $351.30 and 111 hours into this project have a total revenue of $1.59.

Even though I am disappointed with these numbers, I am not giving up on the concept of niche sites.  I did make some income with only getting 1 or 2 visitors a day. If I could get 100′s or 1000′s visitors a day, my return would start being worth the effort.

Also, I have learned a lot from my experience with my Kickstarter campaign on how to utilize social media to get traffic to my site.

Did my Backlinking Strategy Fail?

I wanted to address the fact that I used a backlinking strategy but still have a low ranking in Google and no ranking on other search engines. This does not mean the plan does not work because I never finished implementing the strategy.

I put in Anchor Layer with links from sites I created on 3rd party sites (View list in week 8), but I never sent mass links to the Anchor Layer. To see if this strategy works, I need to start getting a mass number of backlinks to those 3rd party sites.

My Future Niche Site Journals

I am moving all my old articles from to (UPDATE: now they are part of I have already purchased a new domain and will need time to set it up and start posting.  I will update this site with the new location, and I hope all of you who are following my Niche Site Journal will make the transition over there (UPDATE: I’m glad you made it to the new site).

I’ve also been asked a lot about what the web address is for the niche site I am working on.

You can check it out at (now part of
Let me know what you think of the site in the comment section.

My Niche Site Journal:

Week 8 – We made $

We made some money in our Last Week of the Journal & I talk a little about “the best spinner”.

A crazy week as usual.  It was hard to find the time to put in my 14 hours this week.  My wife is due to give birth any day, we are spending a lot of time on creating our comic book (Madman of Magic), my laptop died, the family is planning to come to see the baby, I signed a new contract for putting on animation workshops for the local schools, and …. Well that is all I remember, but I did find 14 hours to work on the Niche Site.


Still in the Middle of my BackLinking Strategy

I have figured out that attempting a backlinking strategy for the first time is very time-consuming.

This tool makes it a little easier (it is free):

Some Notes on article directories:

These are links for my backlinking strategy.  If you don’t know what that is, please read my post from Week 5: Back links and Article Marketing

Sites that no longer work or cost money

  • Article Dashboard now charges money.
  • Article Blast said my account hasn’t been approved yet.  It has been a few weeks, and I still haven’t heard anything.  I did have to submit examples of work, which is cool, but you think they would have contacted me by now.
  • Article Alley said the email provider (gmail) was blocked.  This is weird to block Google email accounts, but I am not opening or using one of my websites accounts for a backlinking strategy.
  • Buzzle said external links were no longer allowed in Articles.  I signed up and was about to post when I read this.
  • The Free Library does not accept new articles at this time.
  • iSnare says you can post an article and have your website on the article, but if you want it to link back (be clickable), then it costs money.  I put one article on there just for the heck of it since I went through the trouble of opening an account, but I will not be posting anymore.

Sites I did use

The Best Spinner

The only spinning software I have ever used is “The Best Spinner”.  I am wondering if it was a bad choice.  I figure the best way to help you decide if you want to purchase the same one is to give positive and negative things about it.


  • I have a hard time doing some of the more complicated spinning features.  For example, if I want to highlight a word to spin, it has issues letting me highlight exactly what I want to highlight.  Sometimes it does half the word or takes away the space between words.
  • CRASHES I have had the software crash on me more than once.  After finishing everything, I try to do save and it says it can not do it because of an error.  Luckily it will usually allows me to try again later.
  • Mistakes with brackets.  After spinning an article, there was an error with a bracket and the article would not spin correctly.  I had to go through and find the mistake.  My guess is the original mistake was probably my fault, but I wonder why the program couldn’t tell me where the mistake was or give me an idea of where I should be looking for the missing bracket.
  • Have to pay yearly for the product (or as they call it, the service).

Cool Features:

  • There are a lot of cool features I have yet to try.  One of these features is the fact the software has more capabilities than just spinning.
  • You can see how similar spun articles are to each other (gives a percentage).
  • Able to access the software from different computers.
  • Not too complicated to use (I wouldn’t call it easy either).

Automate Article Synonyms Selection

I did try the function that automatically finds and chooses synonyms for article spinning.  It didn’t work for me.  When I published the articles I found mistake after mistake. I found so many errors that I ended up rewriting most of the article.
If you are writing a very basic article then this function might work.  If you can get it to work, it would save you at least 40 minutes or more on a 500-word article… That would be some great time savings!

Final thoughts on “the best spinner” software

I don’t plan to buy any other spinning software in the future since I don’t do enough article marketing to make it worth it.  I will stick with this program for awhile or at least until my year subscription is up.

Week # 8 Results

Still working on Back linking

We spent another week setting up backlinks as discussed in our backlinking strategy (read here).  We are putting up more articles than what is required, but I figure we would rather have too many than not enough.

Income: about $1.50 (Total to date $1.50)

We finally made our first dollar this month.  This is really cool but a little sad that it took 8 weeks to get there.  Maybe if I worked on more niche site I would be able to pull in money faster.  The cool thing is that traffic is low and I am not ranked yet, so when these things finally happen I hope it will mean a steady income.

Google Ranking: Not Ranked Yet

Number of page views: 37 in a week (from November 10 – November 16)

This sounds bad because it is lower than last week, but it is, in fact, good news.  I haven’t been on the site as much and, therefore, these are all legitimate views as opposed to me checking the website links.

Costs: $0 (Total to date $346.30)

We did not spend any money this week.  Always a good thing!

Time Breakdown: 16 Hours (Total to date: 111 hours)

I put in two extra hours because I know I missed a few in the past weeks.

Leah’s Time (0 hours):

  • 0 hours.  Leah has been working the entire week on our comic book, Madman of Magic and pregnancy stuff.

Jason’s Time (16 hours):

  • 1 hour going over how to use “The Best Spinner” and the ways other people use it.
  • 15 hours spinning and posting articles.
    I was unable to keep close track of my time because of logistics, but I do know I spent approximately six hours spinning 4 articles (3 around 500 words and 1 around 1200 words).  With the rest of the time spent publishing articles.  I posted at least one article and almost all of the sites listed above, but on a few of them I didn’t get time to post anything.


Since this was the last week of the Niche Site Journal I do not have any concrete plans set up for the Niche Site Journal.  I do realize I still need to finish the backlinking strategy, touch up the website, add the rest of the articles Leah wrote, and optimize the locations of the Google AdWord ads.  I will finish these tasks, but I will have to do it in between working on the comic book and taking care of a new baby.

Lesson:  The Niche Site Journal Lives on!

I will be completing those tasks mentioned in the “plan” section of this article, but instead of posting on a weekly basis, I will be posting monthly updates.  At the same time I expect to start the second site of the niche site journal (as mentioned in Week 0: Explaining Niche Site Journal).  I will be posting those updates on a weekly basis, but before that starts I will be taking a few weeks off to get my life back in order.

I want to say thanks for following my progress and remember that even though this is the last week of this Niche Site Journal, I will be continuing to work on the site and continue to update you on my progress.

My Niche Site Journal:

Week 7 – Still working on Back linking Strategy

We’re still puttering along with the niche site and the back linking strategy.

To be honest, I will be glad when it is all over.  I guess this is why everyone says choose something you love.  While I don’t mind doing articles on pregnancy and pregnant woman’s health, it is hard for me to get excited about it.

The only thing keeping me working on this niche site is:

  • I want to see if the strategies for niche sites work.
  • I enjoy learning about putting up niche sites.
  • I feel that my Niche Site Journal readers (you) hold me accountable to see this through to the end.

Find out “What’s my Ranking.”

I did a search on YouTube for “How to find Google keyword ranking” and who’s video should appear?  That’s right, Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income (the dude really is everywhere).

I have Market Samurai, so I am using that software to figure it out.

Here is the video:

Week # 7 Results

Still working on Backlinking

We spent the week setting up back links as discussed in our back linking strategy (read here).

Income: $0 (Total to date $0)

No Income yet.

Google Ranking:

According to Market Samurai, I am not ranked in any of the search engines.

I do, however, have pages indexed by all the search engines.

Indexed Pages in Search Engines


What you see here is that my number of indexed pages has gone down.  This confused me as I have been adding pages, not taking them away.  I realized late that this had to do with my hosting and domain status.

I have purchased two domains for this niche site. One is a plural version that sounds more natural and the other is the single tense version that sounds less natural (but has higher search volume).  Originally I had the site set so if you went on either, they both showed the same site.  Later I realized this could be confusing, so I changed it so that if you put in the singular name (doesn’t have an “s” at the end) it redirects the person to the web address with the “s” at the end.

Google was indexing these websites as two separate sites.  Meaning instead of seeing 10 pages, it was seeing 20 pages.  I hope this doesn’t hurt my ability to rank in anyway, but I guess we will have to wait and find out.

Number of page views: 52 in a week (from October 28 – November 3)

This is higher than I expected to get, which I guess is a good sign.  The problem is that the 52 views came from 6 unique users.  My guess is 3 of those unique users are me (my desktop, laptop, and smartphone).  I did set the analytics plug-in not to include me in the data, but I am guessing it still counted me towards the page views.

Costs: $0 (Total to date $346.30)

We did not spend any money this week.

Time Breakdown: 14 Hours (Total to date 95 hours)

Leah’s Time (0 hours):

  • 0 hours.  Leah has been working the entire week on our comic book, Madman of Magic.

Jason’s Time (14 hours):

  • 2 hours editing, adjusting, and publishing articles on the niche site
  • 1 hour learning how to use the best spinner (I am still having problems)
  • 3 hours spinning my first article.  I did it by sentence and by individual words.  Next time I will just being doing it word by word because when I added alternatives for every sentence, it doubled the number of words I had to go through.
  • 4.5 hours setting up and publishing articles on article directories.  I got two up on most of them.  WARNING: some of the article directories I tried no longer work.  Try to get an updated list if possible.  Another issue I had was that on two separate occasions I made about 30 minutes of changes on an article in an article directory site, hit a button without saving it on my computer and lost all that work.
  • 1.5 hours setting up the free blog site
  • 2 hours Setting up Web 2.0 sites


Only one week left and a lot to do.

  • Week 8: Set up all “anchor layer” accounts, spin articles, and place the spun articles on those accounts.  If I still have time, I will build mass back links to anchor sites (I still need to research the best way to do this).

Lesson:  Backlinking takes a long time

It turns out back linking takes a long time from scratch.  The beauty and unfair advantage of my next niche site is that I already have accounts with all the sites needed for the back linking strategy.

Here are a few tips I have put together to help you in the process and allowing you to get through all this faster than me.

  • Make sure to edit an article on a word document and then paste it into the website you are posting on.  I lost about an hour and a half re-doing articles I had already edited and adjusted because the website didn’t save it.
  • Practice with your spinning software.  I use The Best Spinner and while it is user friends, it is easy to make mistakes.  If you misplace the location of just one “{” tag, you will find yourself going slowly insane as you try to fix it by hand.
  • Find an updated list of article directories (Here is where I posted mine).
  • Have a plan and don’t keep doing research every few days.  Pick a system and try it!
I hope this helps.  One more week left and then I am taking a short break before launching the next niche site… Leah (my wife) and I are working on a comic book (madman of magic) so we will be focusing more of our attention on that until the second week of December (2012).

Sharing time

I am wondering what everyone else is using to get higher in the Google Search Ranks.  If you want to join in the SEO discussion, leave your comments below.

Week 6 – Getting Indexed, Writing Content, and Waiting for Google

It has been another crazy week here at the Love Family Household.  Leah is Coming into her last month of pregnancy, and we should have little Everett to take care of sometime this month.  We are hoping that if we can crack the Online Marketing Business Code we will spend all our time at home or traveling with our child and possibly make some more children.

Even if we can get our niche site to make us a good part time income we would be happy. Leah can continue to work at UPS part time (which provides us with Insurance), and I can continue doing magic shows part time.

So, let us see where we are in this Niche Site Journal.

Week # 6 Results

Getting Indexed

We have finally confirmed that we are indexed with Google.  We launched the blog 3 weeks ago, but we waited till 2 weeks ago to use the WordPress SEO PlugIn to register with Google and other search engines.  With article spinning I have found that we already rank on the first page of, but I am not sure yet on Google or Yahoo.  I am still trying to figure out how to use Market Samurai‘s Rank Tranker tool, but I should have our rankings by next week’s post.

We did try a web tool at  It showed zero results, but limits search to the top 1000 positions of a particular keyword on Google.

Writing Content

We realize going into the pregnancy niche that we are going to have a high competition rate.  To overcome this, we are focusing on a less popular keyword, but we also need to take advantage of untapped long-tail, non-target keywords.  In other words, we need to write great content that people want to read.  If we create an informative site with lots of content we will get more people to our site.

To capture these long-tail keywords we will use market samurai, but more importantly, we are going to write articles on subjects that we are interested in for my wife’s pregnancy.  The more articles we write, the more keywords we will rank for, and the more we will increase our traffic.  This will give us the opportunity to help more pregnant woman and their loved ones while making a few dollars.

Our goal is to get a total of 20 articles on the website before the end of week 8.  We currently have 6 articles written right now with only 2 of them up on the site.  We should have the finished ones published by next week, but we also need to spin a few of those articles for our backlinking strategy.

Google takes it’s time

It has come to my attention we can’t force Google to rank us number one.  I can’t complain as I have only put in a few hours into marketing.  I am not sure how fast others have accomplished the #1 ranking, but my goal is that we get there in under 4 months (by the first of March).

Income: $0 (Total to date $0)

No Income yet.

Costs: $0 (Total to date $346.30)

We didn’t spend any money this week…. That always makes me happy.

Time Breakdown: 11 Hours (Total to date 81 hours)

We only worked 11 hours this week.  The week of Halloween is always busy for a magician, in case you didn’t know I am a magician, so I had limited availability and needed a lot of rest between events.

Leah’s Time (8 hours):

  • 8 hours writing articles.  It takes Leah about an hour to do research and outline her page, about 30 – 45 minutes to write, and 15 minutes to read back over several times for editing.

Jason’s Time (3 hours):


Here is an update list of our plans.

  • Week 7: Create articles, spin, and place on other sites with links back to my site. Sign up and plan to use mass article submitter/creator software and social bookmarking sites to point at web 2.0 sites, articles in directories, and articles in external blogs.
  • Week 8: Comment on other related sites with back links to mine, become active in forums, and build a basic social media presence.

Lesson:  Learning Curve

It has come to my attention that comparing my progress to other niche site creators is not a smart thing to do.  The fact that I am spending so much time learning is slowing down my progress tremendously.  Next time Leah and I create a niche site we will have a better understand of the process and will not need to reference or research niche selection, article marketing, how to use the tools we have purchased, etc, etc.  This is why I am trying to present this as a Niche Site Journal instead and hoping you can learn from my mistakes and not have to do the same amount of research.

For those of you who are also attempting a Niche Site, I recommend that you try to do most of your work in one sitting.  I have found that by spreading out my time to work on the niche site I have had to constantly go back and read over information I read the week before.  It becomes a circle of time waste having to read over everything for a few hours, work on what needs to get done, and then stop. The next week I have to go over the process to ensure I didn’t forget anything.

If at all possible do your work in burst broken down into smaller tasks, such as:

  1. Choose Niche, pick a domain, and buy web hosting.
  2. Install wordpress, choose themes, and add plugins
  3. Create content and publish
  4. Article Marketing

By working in bursts you can research the part you are on, implement what you learned, and the next week work on the next step.  Our plan is to use this productivity method for the next niche site.

My Niche Site Journal:

Your Turn

I realize I have not invited people to follow along in the last few posts and wish to do so now.
If you are interested, you should use what I have learned and attempt your own niche site journal.  It can be on a free site like or   If you have a personal blog like this one, that is another option.  No matter were you host your blog, I ask you to go ahead and post your URL in the comment section with a brief description of your strategy.

Week 5 – Back links and Article Marketing

Marketing Niche Sites is hard. There is a never ending amount of information with a lot of contradictory theories and techniques. I ended up spending a great deal of time looking around at other people’s thoughts on the subject.

There is a lot of content out there in a variety of forms. I spent more time watching videos, listening to podcasts and reading articles then I really should have.

My new philosophy is just to pick one person to follow on this and stick with that.

I have decided to stick with the system Pat Flynn talks about in his the backlinking strategy that works article, but with some adjustments.

My back linking strategy is to create original articles; spin those articles; and submit the spin versions to article directories, Web 2.0 properties, and free blog sites with links back to my niche site.  Then I have to connect to these spun articles through article submission software and to use social bookmarking.

From Jason and Jeremy’s video on Internet Business Mastery

I tried to diversify the “words” that contain my link to my site.

They suggest:

33% Exact Keyword, Partial Keyword, Related Keywords
33% Using sites URL and URLs to specific posts/pages
33% Miscellaneous (such as “click here” or “More Information”)

The articles I submitted had the following anchor tags for the backlinks:

  • 1 had my wife’s name as the author (Leah Love).
  • 1 link was “Click Here” and was in the context of, “for more information click here.”
  • 2 were URL links to the home page of the niche site.

Week #5 Results

Back links and Article Marketing

This week has been a rough one for a few reason.  The first being we had to buy more software to make the marketing strategy work (which Leah was not happy about since we had already spent$262.30), and we might need to buy more software.  The second being that I wasted too much time researching what strategy to use and then doing something different (I talk about this in the lesson learned section below).

Income: $0

No Income yet.

Costs: $84

For the best spinner, we spent $84.  This is the software that changes an article into multiple articles. It changes the articles enough to sneak past being flagged as duplicates.  These articles are used to put on other sites with links back to my niche site as mentioned in the strategy at the top of this post.

Time Breakdown: 14 Hours

Leah’s Time (4 hours):

  • 4 hours writing new content for the site. These will be “spun” for the back linking strategy.

Jason’s Time (7 hours):

  • 2.5 hour studying backlinking strategies and creating a plan
  • 2.5 hour signing up for article directories
  • 1 hour spinning articles
  • 4 hour posting articles on article directories (this took way longer than it should, and I talk about it in the Lessons section below)


Here is an update list of our strategy.

  • Week 6: Create articles, spin, and place on other sites with link backs. Sign up and plan to use mass article submitter/creator software and social bookmarking sites to point at web 2.0 sites, articles in directories, and articles in external blogs.
  • Week 7: Comment on other sites with back links to mine, become active in forums, and build a basic social media presence.
  • Week 8: Optimize the WordPress site, Google Adsense, and the marketing.

Lesson:  Don’t let paranoia get you off track!

It has been a weird lesson this week, and it sounds awkward saying it, but I let fear lose me about 4 hours of the 10 hours I put in this week.  That means I could have accomplished 40% more if I didn’t make this mistake.

Let me explain.

I have decided to use Pat Flynn’s niche site duel articles as my guiding star in creating this niche sites. I trust Pat because he is honest about his income, his strategies, and cares for his audience. All things that make me believe him, but while implementing his backlinking strategy, I started to question how it worked.

I started reading other websites on the subject, which was a good idea, but I spent 2.5 hours going over everything I could read or watch on the subject. In the end, I decided to go with Pat’s strategy. Reading what others said was not a waste of time, but I could have spent just 1 hour and I would know the same amount of information I do now.

The second thing and the biggest mistake I made was getting paranoid that I would be flagged for repeat content. So I took my spun articles and drastically changed them manually. This consisted of cutting out entire paragraphs from the article and switching the remaining ones around. The problem with this was that the article directories required 500 – 600 words minimum.  I had cut the article down to 300 words on two occasions. This required writing an extra 200 – 300 words to fill in the words I cut out.

This was a huge mistake for several reasons.

  1. When Google looks at my articles next to each other, it looks for a specific percentage of similar word use in sentences.  It doesn’t matter if the paper is in similar order because it looks at similar sentences not similarly structures of articles.  The spin software breaks up the similarity in sentences to get passed as none duplicate articles.
  2. Wasting my money.  I paid the money for using a program to spin articles and not using it correctly.
  3. Wasting my time.  The articles were already different because of being spun.  Me changing them by hand had no purpose other than an attempt to overcome the paranoia of being flagged and not getting ranked.
Another week has passed with a new one coming up.  I hope you learn from my lessons and enjoy following along with my niche site journal.  If you have any questions, feel free to leave the in the comment section.
Jason Love

My Niche Site Journal:

Week 4 – add plug-ins, add widgets, and adjusting theme

56 hours into the Niche Site Journal and the website is done. It has been a busy four weeks with a lot of technical mistakes and learning involved.

This week it was hard to find time to work on the niche site. Leah had her baby shower and had some other baby related things going on, which left me to take up the slack.


In case you are new to WordPress, “Plugins are tools used to extend the functionality of the WordPress platform. However, they are only applicable to self-hosted blogs and web sites using the software” (from

I am not going to explain how to install since this is not that kind of post. Instead here is a list of the ones I am currently using for my niche site.

  • Contact Form 7:  for my contact page I am using this form so that people can contact me without having to give out my email address.
  • Disable Comments:  I didn’t want people to be able to comment on my pages because it isn’t that kind of website. Also, I get enough spam comments on and my other sites. I would hate to have to clean out another site from comment spam.
  • Google Analyticator:  This is how I am connecting the website to my Analytics account for tracking visitors.
  • WordPress SEO:  A plug-in that is allowing me to optimize my pages for Search Engines and hopefully getting me ranked higher.

Week #4 Results

Fine Tuning the website

Leah has had a busy week, so all the work fell on my shoulders. Which has been rough. I did 10 hours Sunday and about an hour a day Monday through Thursday.  The results of which could have been better, but the site is ready to start promoting.  The only issues I see right now are that a few of the pages need another 100 words to be optimal for the search engines, and we will probably do a little more tweaking with the Theme and adding more content.

Income: $0

No Income yet.

iStock photo

Image from iStock

Costs: $47.99

We ended up putting spending a little more money this week than we wanted to. We spent $47.99 on 30 credits with  We could have bought less, but I do enjoy using images in my posts. Photos help with SEO and make the site look better.

The truth is, I bought 30 credits with the knowledge that if I have any extra I can use them for other blogs.

This image to the right was purchased from and represents the internal struggle I had with
spending $47.99 on pictures.  Just to let you know, this image was originally bought for a post on a different blog of mine… So, I am recycling the images I already purchased.

Time Breakdown: 14 Hours

Leah’s Time (0 hours):

  • 0 Leah was busy and didn’t have time this week to help out.

Jason’s Time (14 hours):

  • 1 hour Adjusted theme to make the Google AdSense links look somewhat like the links for the rest of the page.  Making it look more uniform and better designed.
  • 1 hour looking for a new theme.  While adjusting the website and trying to get it to look how I wanted to, I become very frustrated.
    .After the hour I gave up and decided I would stick with what I got until further down the road.
  • 3 hours finding and setting up plugins.
  • 1 hour looking at widgets.  I ended up only using the search bar, but will add more down the road.
  • 3 hour researching the topic and adding content to pages.  The SEO plug-in was saying we need about 50 – 100 more words for a few pages, so I was trying to write more but wanted to ensure it was relevant and helpful.
  • 3 hours messing with SEO plugin settings inside the pages and posts.  Some needed a higher density of keywords and they all needed meta descriptions.
  • 2 hours finding, purchasing, adding, and optimizing images.


Here is an update list of our plans.  The difference from last week is that we worked out more details of what we want to do for each week.

  • Week 5: Create and implement Article Marketing plan.
  • Week 6: Continue to do article marketing, while improving sites shareability via social media and social bookmarking sites.
  • Week 7: Adjust marketing campaign towards what is giving us the most traffic.
  • Week 8: Optimize the WordPress site, Google Adsense, and the marketing.


I learned several lessons this week while working on the niche site journal.  It has been a rough week because of Leah not being able to help.

-Taking breaks

On Saturday, I put in a 10 hour day working on the blog.  I figure it would be okay.  During my Undergraduate work and Masters Degree, it was common to spend days on end working on projects and papers. I thought it would be no problem to sit down and to work for the day. It was harder than I remember.

The thing that saved me was the five to fifteen minute breaks every few hours.  I kept finding myself trying to work and my brain wondering off. It took me about half a day to realize that without a break, I was unproductive and unable to focus.

-Perfection can hold you back

I can’t seem to get the WordPress theme to do exactly what I want, and it drives me crazy. I have also realized that I could keep adjusting the theme for another two weeks before I would be close to happy with it.  Instead of doing that, I will just launch as is and when it starts making me money I will fix, adjust, and optimize the websites.

My Niche Site Journal:

Week 3 – WordPress Site Editing & Content Creation

We are at a total of 42 hours into working on this niche site with 14 hours coming from this week. This week we’ve been filling up the website with content and adjusting the code to look good. The process is simple: write the article, create or find images for the post, make changes to the “look” of the website, set up Google AdSense, and placing ads on the site.

Pages for the website

Since we spent the week working on the site, I thought you might find it helpful to know what the website is going to look like in regards to the number of pages and what they are for.

  1. Home: We are using this as the Welcome page.  It talks about the product (which is our Keyword); we make sure to give it a personal feel, and we mention the reader as much as possible.  Since our site is on pregnancy, we congratulate them on their expected child or their loved one’s expected child, make sure they feel we care about them (which we do), and sell them on the idea of the product being essential for their health and well-being (which it is).
  2. Articles: This page is in a condensed blog format.  This page will have a list of around five articles talking about the product. Each will show a headline with a very brief description of the articles topic.  These five articles will be their own pages so I will not include them in this list as they are blog posts on the subject of the niche.
  3. Questions: This page is dedicated to quick questions and answers people have about the niche.  We currently have five questions, but hope to populate it from questions we get from our readers.
  4. About: The page that talks about why we created the website, the purpose of the site, and what’s unique about our site.
  5. Contact: We have a form on this page for people to fill out if they have any questions, concerns, or just want to drop us a line through a form.  We created the form using a plug-in. I will share which one in the next update (week 4).

Week #3 Results

Filling in the website with Content

Leah and I have been working on different parts of the niche site at the same time.  Leah has been creating content and designing images to enhance the site.  At the same time, I’ve been adjusting the look of the website while adding the Google adSense codes.  The more we work on the site, the more excited I am about getting the site done, marketing, and then collect the passive income from all the work we are doing these eight weeks.

Income: $0

No Income yet.

Costs: $0

We didn’t spend any money this week, but you might want to. Leah’s undergraduate degree is in illustration and art, plus I have studied digital arts for fun and for creating marketing material for my other businesses.  This means we will be creating a lot of the website images ourselves (with plans to monetize the pictures later with revenue sharing stock image sites).  You might consider getting an image at (cheapest photos are around $1.50 to use), or you can get custom images done through

Time Breakdown: 14 Hours

We ended up breaking up the week down the middle because of the fact there was enough work for both of us to put in.  Leah ended up working two hours a day for three days, with one of those days working an extra hour.  I (Jason) ended up sitting down for seven hours to adjust the website’s look, add Google Ad Sense ads, go over what Leah wrote, and add content to the website.

Leah’s Time (7 hours):

  • 1 hour determining what pages were needed for the site.  The way she did this was by looking at other sited on the web and determining what pages were needed for our small site.
  • 6 hours writing for those pages.  Some of the pages were difficult to fill as this is the first time Leah has written for websites.  To make it easier she would look at the sites she liked with similar pages, determine the what objective the page was to fulfill (we listed them in Pages for Website section above), break those objectives into sections, and write based off of those objectives & sections.

Jason’s Time (7 hours):

  • 4 hours adding pages and creating links between them.  Normally this is easy with WordPress as it creates the links for you in the menu section.  In the theme we choose I didn’t like it had the links at the bottom of the page. So, I manually put the links in using HTML coding.
    This didn’t take too long, but the hard part was remembering how to link within the same page.  We used this for the Question page; there is a list of questions, and when you click on the link, it takes you down the page to the answer.  I had to look up again how to do it, and then I had problems, and that meant I had to re-do it several times.
  • 2 hours setting up AdSense banners and getting them on the page.  I had to adjust the sizes several times and figure out the best color scheme.
  • 1 hour editing and uploading to the site the pages Leah completed.


Here is an update list of our plans.  The difference is that we worked out more details of what we want to do for each week.

  • Week 4: Finishing the Adjust theme for the best look, add plug-ins, add widgets, and finish populating the website with great content.
  • Week 5: Create and implement Article Marketing plan.
  • Week 6: Continue to do article marketing, while improving sites shareability via social media and social bookmarking sites.
  • Week 7: Adjust marketing campaign towards what is giving us the most traffic.
  • Week 8: Optimize the WordPress site, Google Adsense, and the marketing.


The lesson for this week is to utilize your strengths and outsource your weaknesses.  For both my wife and I we have different strengths and weaknesses.  She is considerably better at writing articles while she has no clue on how to set up a WordPress theme and make changes.  You might not have a spouse that compliments your abilities, but there are people out there who are willing to do the things you don’t want to do, for reasonable compensation.

Sites like are great for that.  For $5 you can pay someone else to do your web design, image formatting, content creation, etc…  it saves you hours of possible tedium.  I love learning how to create websites, so website creation makes sense.  I hate writing content, so if Leah weren’t here to cover that, I would hire a writer for $5 on Fiverr and then adjust their article to fit my voice.

The Fiverr website can have its drawbacks, but is usually worth the risk because it is so cheap.  You might have to shop around for a someone that does the best job and hire them to do what you don’t want to.  I also want to mention I’m not an affiliate for and use it sparingly because I like to do a lot of the work myself and don’t have a lot of money to throw around.  So, while it is an amazing site where you can get some great work done, there are also people who claim to be better at things than they are.  You can get your money back if you’re not truly satisfied (I had to do this one time), you need to be careful when using it to make sure you understand the process before you begin.

My Niche Site Journal:

Week 1 – Choosing a niche site topic

This is the 1st week of this experiment with Niche Sites. We are very excited and have high hopes for the possibility of making a full time living off of Niche Sites.

We are not 100% sure on the best way to format these blogs for easy reading of information, so you might notice a change in layouts over time. We do know that we want to include: Income & expenses, the number of hours put in with what we did, plans for the future and the lessons we learned.

If you have any suggestions or questions, we would love to hear them in the comment section below. But first…

It is time to get started with the Niche Site Journal!

So, let’s get started with a strategy.

Site 1’s strategy (Pat Flynn’s)

1-Choosing a niche site and create it.

2-Get traffic.

3-Traffic clicks on affiliate links or ads strategically placed on the site.

4-$$Make money.$$


Week #1 Results

Choosing a niche site

My wife is currently seven months pregnant with our first child; because of this Leah has been doing hours of research on the topic for her worries and some peace of mind. For this reason, we have decided to do our first niche site involving pregnancy.

The problem facing this niche is that it is over saturated with tons of information, sites, and blogs.

niche site options

Current Numbers:

Income: $0

no money in yet.

Expenses: $98.94

We ended up giving in and purchasing Market Samurai (this is an affiliate link).  We bought this product because of the many hours I was spending going between Google Keyword Tools and then using Mozbar and SEOquake extensions drove me crazy.  It was tripling the time it took me to see the numbers.  Market Samurai gathers the numbers for me, and I’ve concluded it will save me a lot of time in the future for under $100.

It was an investment I couldn’t pass up.

Time breakdown: 14 Hours

  • 4 hours learning about choosing niche sites.  I was trying to figure out what I should be looking for and what numbers make a good niche site.
  • 2 hours on learning Market Samurai.  After about four hours of going through keyword numbers on my own, I gave in and bought the software.  I was not familiar with using it, so I had to go through the tutorial videos that Market Samurai has on their site and YouTube channel.
  • 8 hours trying to find keywords (including 4 hours before using Market Samurai).  This part was a lot harder than I expected!
    Because we choose such a highly saturated market that involves public health, anything with high view numbers in pregnancy is covered by all the medical, educational, and non-profit sites.  Not to mention the blogs of people talking about their pregnancy and the commercial websites trying to promote to pregnant woman.


We have decided to adjust our plan a little. We know we’re going to have to work around the problem of the over saturated market, but we have a few ideas to get around this.


  1. Create a niche site that focuses on smaller searched keywords that are pregnancy related. Then hoping that getting number one on Google searches for several of them will bring in the numbers we need and allow Google to provide the best ads for each of those pages.
  2. Instead of creating one larger niche site, we create several micro niche sites that link together. This will cost more in purchasing domain names ($15 per domain) but will make Google more likely to rank us as number 1.
  3. A hybrid of the first two.  Create a website that is our primary hub with great content on all aspect of pregnancy and have several micro niche sites that cover very specific areas.  All of the micro sites will link back to the main website, and the main site will send readers to the micro sites to read about those specific topics.


The first lesson we have learned is that sticking with two hours a day is hard.  We have found, however, it is more enjoyable and easier for us to put in more than two hours at a time.  Now we plan to put in at least a 4 to 5-hour stretches, four days a week.

Choosing a niche site is a lot harder than I thought it would be, but I have enjoyed my time.  It is like playing a game where the winner gets passive income for years to come. But to win it is important to take chances, make the right choices, and not quit the game.

My Niche Site Journal: