For the first time since starting this particular case study, I’m not excited about writing this.
I don’t know why exactly. I saw decent results overall this month, so it can’t be that. Maybe it’s the fact that, while I’ve seen decent results, I haven’t seen my SEO efforts convert to overall profit yet.
I started these SEO case study reports back in November 2010, and provide monthly updates on how my various SEO campaigns are faring.
If you haven’t seen them already (or simply want to read previous reports in this case study), you can view the previous months here: Month 5, Month 6, Month 7, Month 8, Month 9, Month 10, Month 11, and Month 12.
If you want to skip all the details and get straight to the results, scroll down to the last image, as it gives a fantastic overall summary of last month’s results.
SEO Firm Keywords Skyrocketing
I’ve now been using RankPay for 8 months, still targeting the same 2 keywords since I started with them.
While it took a while to get these 2 keywords into a decent ranking range, they’ve really starting to do quite well now.
As a reminder, they weren’t the best 2 keywords to choose for a case study since they both have an extremely high search volume, totalling around 6 million EXACT searches on Google each month. However, since RankPay uses a performance-based system, charging you only once you rank in the top 30 (and tiered the higher you go), these 2 keywords seemed to work best for a case study.
Since the 2 keywords are so competitive, I didn’t expect to rank well for them for quite a while. And that seemed to be the case too, as it took about 5 months to hit the #100 mark.
In my last SEO update, I announced how my rankings finally ramped up for these 2 keywords, and was ranked #32 and #50 on Google for them at the time.
Well, I’m happy to announce that they have continued to climb the rankings, and are now at #23 and #34!
When the keywords were ranked #32 and #50, I posted the following screenshot from my Google Analytics account below:
Those stats were taken from June 25th, 2011, and they show a total of 30 visitors from those 2 keywords.
Now that the keywords are #23 and #34, check out the traffic from these keywords from yesterday (July 25th, 2011):
The number jumped from 30 visits a day to 79 a day! That’s 2,370 visits a month, on average.
And remember: those 2 keywords are still on the 3rd and 4th search result pages (albeit near the top of them). Most people rarely go past the first page (1%), let alone to the 3rd or 4th. Yet, I’m already seeing 79 visits a day as a result.
Can you imagine how much traffic that would grow to once (if?) I am on the 1st page?
Now, to be fair, the bounce rate on both of these keywords is extremely high, but then again, I haven’t really prepared my site for those keywords either.
While I have been hesitant to recommend RankPay in the past, I am now much more confident in doing so. The results speak for themselves, and you can follow my progress with them since the beginning of the case study.
The fact is that I’ve only had to start paying for the keywords now, 8 months in, because you only ever start to pay once you rank in the top 30. I am now on pages 2 and 3 of Google and am receiving 79 clicks a day to my site on targeted keywords as a result.
I worked out a special deal with them, and so if you decide to sign up with them, be sure to use TYLERCRUZ as the promo code, as it will give you an instant $50 credit applied to your account.
New SEO Guy: 3 Months Later
I have now been with my “new” SEO guy for 3 months, and am still happy with him so far. He’s definitely much better than my original guy, that’s for sure. But his latest results, while progressive, are not nearly as explosive as his first month was.
Unfortunately, based on the past month, I saw quite a drop in rankings on my affiliate site (Ex. from 15 to 30). They also, mysteriously, dropped to the 800 range on Google for about a week, before returning to near-normal levels yesterday.
It’s almost as if he can almost ‘instantly’ get anything to around the #18 spot, but then hits a snag and has a very difficult time improving beyond that.
I’ll need to wait another month to see if he can persevere beyond this wall.
Affiliate Site #2
In my last update, I mentioned how I hired my new SEO guy to work on another site for me, which I refer to as affiliate site #2.
I have him targeting 2 keywords which are about medium in competition.
However, instead of paying him a monthly rate on these 2 keywords, I’m paying him on a performance-based structure similar to RankPay. What’s different, though, is that I only have to pay him a flat fee once each keywords is in the top 3 on Google, and then a small monthly fee each month thereafter to keep it up there.
Within days of starting, he already had me ranked #9 for one of the keywords, which then dropped down to #13. The other keyword stayed stuck in the 300’s.
Unfortunately, these 2 keywords saw absolutely no improvement in the past month, so I’ll have to ask him about this.
Since this case study series is beginning to collect more data, I am now displaying the SEO income from my affiliate site in a table format for easier viewing:
|Month of SEO||# of Leads||Approximate Value|
*Please note that since I don’t always publish these updates every 30-days exactly, that these numbers are a bit off due to overlapping, having a bit of a gap, and whatnot.
Man, what is going on? Another 1-lead month, even though I had 74 clicks to the offer. It’s just so odd, since I used to average an 8-10% conversion rate. The advertiser’s landing page is the same… and you would think that natural traffic would convert better than PPC traffic…
Month 12 Update
Please note that I am currently tracking 15 keywords across 3 different websites and search engines, so I won’t be able to focus on every single keyword, and will therefore focus only on the ones that show the most change, whether that be good or bad:
And last but not least, here is a very nice overview comparison chart of all the keywords in my SEO case study from both 1 month ago and 6 months ago, as compared with today. I have decided not to include my more recent affiliate #2 keywords here yet, as they haven’t seen much change yet and simply make the image too large.
I use RankTracker to track and graph all my keywords, and absolutely endorse and recommend it 100%. A lot of you have already purchased it based on my recommendation. Feel free to comment on what you think of it yourself.
Anyhow, here’s the overall change over the past 1 and 6 months:
The big winners this month were the 2 movie RankPay keywords.
Don’t be mislead by the affiliate keywords, as most of that improvement was just healing from being sandboxed for a while the previous month.
While things look positive as a whole, I’m going to need to see continued improvement and new ranking high’s, in order to make all this SEO investment worthwhile.
That’s the update for now. I’ll have another one for you in another month from now, as I always do.