Welcome back to another episode of the Niche Pursuits News podcast! This week Spencer sits down with Josh Blackburn, a growth marketer at Link Whisper with an extensive background in SEO to talk about the latest news for affiliate marketers, website owners, SEOs, and content creators.
They kick off the show by talking about how Google recently released its earnings for Q2 and the CEO, Sundar Pichai, said that the Search Generative Experience is going to gradually get better, faster, and more accurate and that user feedback has been extremely positive so far.
Spencer and Josh put those comments into context and were skeptical of his statements, but one thing is abundantly clear: SGE is here to stay. Spencer does a few searches using SGE and he and Josh talk about the results.
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The next topic is Twitter and Elon Musk’s rebranding of the company as X. Musk has a broader vision for Twitter as a massive brand where, in the future, users would be able to send payments, message others, shop, etc. Spencer and Josh talk about the future trillionaire’s plans and whether or not they think he’ll be able to pull it off.
In the Shiny Object Shenanigans portion of the podcast, Spencer starts by talking about his new software, Rank Logic. He shares that it has done better than he expected since its launch and talks about how it works. He also mentions two new features that were recently added which allow users to see how content is performing based on their category or tags.
Josh then talks about a niche site he’s been working on. It had been growing until it got hit with an algorithm update and lost most of its traffic. Josh is currently experimenting with that site by uploading AI content, sometimes up to 200 articles per day. He reveals that his traffic has increased not from the new content but, rather, from the old content. He and Spencer talk about why this may be, how he does it, and what his plans are for the site.
Then it’s time to talk Weird Niche Sites. Spencer’s site is not that weird, but it is very successful: PDF2go. The site ranks really well for PDF-converting keywords and has lots of display ads. It’s probably getting 10 million visitors per month and may be making 6 or 7 figures, also per month. Spencer talks about how the website probably started out with a one, simple free tool and, over the years, grew into a very lucrative business.
Josh shares his site for the week: PercentageCalculator. This is just a simple, free, 3-page website that gets between 220k visits per month, according to Ahrefs, and 2.4 million, according to SimilarWeb. Along the same lines as Spencer’s example, they talk about the possibility of replicating these sites’ success.
And that brings us to the end of another great episode of Niche Pursuits News. Thanks for listening, and don’t forget to join us next week!
Spencer: Hey everyone, welcome back to the niche pursuits podcast. We are recording an episode of this week in niche pursuits news. And of course I’m Spencer Hawes your host of the show here and founder of niche pursuits. com. I’ve got Josh with me today. You may have seen him a couple of times on the podcast before.
Josh, welcome back.
Josh: Hey Spencer, good to be here. And actually it’s the first time you and I have been on the podcast before I filled in for you now I’m filling in for Jared.
Spencer: Exactly. Yeah, we got summer breaks. Jared’s on a short summer vacation this week. And so, you’re filling in for us, which I really appreciate very much.
For people that don’t remember what you do, you actually are a growth manager over at Link Whisper. And so you’re help growing that software tool Link Whisper. You’ve done a great job. But that’s, that’s your wheelhouse. You have a ton of expertise in SEO. That’s your background.
And so I just throw that out there for people that are listening in to know that, Hey, you’re super knowledgeable. You’ve spent many years in this space as it relates to SEO, affiliate marketing, and this whole world that we live in. So, yeah, thank you. Thank you.
Josh: A great, great introduction.
Yeah, you’re welcome. And before we jump into the regular show, I do just want to mention, since we talked about Link Whisper that we are currently running a deal on Link Whisper. If people just go over to linkwhisper. com, they’ll see the, the countdown timer. It, it, it only lasts until, tonight when this episode comes out, it’ll be you know, maybe up for only another 12 hours.
If you happen to miss that deal, go ahead and use coupon code podcast at checkout and we’ll make sure to get you a deal over a link whisper as well. So just wanted to mention that for, for people that are listening in. I think
Josh: one, just one clarification for the people listening is if you catch the deal, when this podcast goes live today You do not need a coupon code.
It’ll automatically be applied at checkout, but if this is passed you know, if you listen to this later on, then you will need to enter the coupon code podcast.
Spencer: Yep, good clarification. So like all episodes, we cover really three main areas. First, we talk about the news that’s in the industry, just things that are happening in the digital marketing space, and there is a lot of things that are very interesting this week again to cover, and so we’re gonna jump into that.
And then the second thing that we like to cover are shiny object shenanigans. These are things that we’re working on the side, our side projects that maybe… aren’t our main focus, but that we’re putting some time in, hoping to, to grow. And then the third area that we’re going to cover at the end, which is always my favorite, is weird niche sites.
We co each of us cover one weird niche just a site out in the wild that we found that’s either weird or that’s just maybe very niche and narrow and just doing extremely well. And so we’ve got a couple of good niche sites, so be sure to stick around until the end cause we’re going to talk about those as well.
So having said all that, what do you think, Josh, should we jump into the news? Yeah, let’s go. Alright, let’s rock and roll here. So first up is Google did an earnings call just this week where they released their quarterly earnings and Google’s doing quite well for those that are wondering, you know, earnings are up and things like that.
But what is very interesting to, to us as SEOs and affiliate marketers is that Sundar Pinchai talked a lot about their search generative experience. So SGE for short, you know, that’s their AI results that are happening live in the Google SERPs. And so I have to give a hat tip to Marie Haines.
She did a great summary of the earnings call and pulled out all the snippets where the CEO Sundar Pinchai was talking about the search generative experience and how he views it and the results that they’re seeing. And so I’m going to share my screen and it’s just going to be an article that Marie Haynes wrote again.
So hat tip to her, mariehaynes. com where you can check it out and you should definitely follow her on Twitter. She’s always tweeting great things and great sort of news items. And so there was just a few quotes that I thought were interesting you know, on, and let’s see if I can, can find those quotes here.
So, so first, you know, the search generative experience. Basically, while it’s exciting new technology, we’ve constantly been bringing in AI innovations in a search for the past few years. And this is the next step in our journey. And so the overall mood and message that Sundar Pinchai was making is that things are going well from their perspective with The SGE, the search generative experience, and it’s getting better and better.
They have new models that are coming out. The Gemini is their, their new sort of large language learning model. You know, they’ve got Palm 2. They’re just going to be constantly improving. And so what we see today is not what we’re going to see in a few months from now in terms of they, they at least say that it’s going to get better.
It’s going to get faster. It’s going to get more accurate. And the, again, the overall sort of mood and message is that here it is in bold that user feedback has been very positive so far.
Josh: But I, I think we have to take this with the context as this was an earnings call, right? It’s he, he can’t come on the call and say, Hey, the product is really not that good.
You know, we’re getting beat, or we could maybe get beat and I also need more money to continue to try to develop this, because I don’t want to lose, right? So it’s, I think it’s very interesting and we see like on SEO Twitter is most people do not like it. They do not get good results but further in the article like Marie had something where she because they’re using The Google Lens with barge she could upload a picture of of onions and it was like hey Why does this keep happening every year and it gives her the like three or four different?
Reasons why it could be happening, and like, that’s pretty helpful, right? It’s really interesting. And then they were also like with the Palm Tuna Language Models, they said they’re going to get more into video. Be easier for them to, I guess, to get the information from videos, versus trying, like, the way…
That we’re currently doing it, or the other AI models are currently doing it. So, I mean, I think it’s going to be interesting to see, and I don’t think they’re going to stop, right? Like, this is going to be the future. And he does mention, right, that ads will still play a big part of this. And that sending traffic to businesses and websites, they still want to do that.
Which, of course, right now, it doesn’t look like that.
Spencer: So it is, it is interesting to think about his perspective, right? Like you, you nailed it. He’s the CEO of the company. So of course it’s going to be a positive message. And so. It, it becomes our responsibility to think, okay, is, is the user feedback really positive?
You know, if, if we look at SEO Twitter, everybody’s like, oh, this is, you know, Marie Haynes gave lots of examples of, oh, this is, you know, people tweeting like, this is bad, it’s inaccurate information, you know, old results are better, et cetera. I do have to wonder, is he talking about feedback? Like, have they done, you know viewed testing with normal users, grandma and grandpa and, you know, people that know nothing about SEO.
Like, is the feedback good from them? So maybe, yes, that’s the case, but, but we really don’t know. I mean, of course he’s going to say it’s positive and, you know, you, you can pull, you know, positive feedback out of sort of anything. As you look at that, but the, the one quote that I did want to read here that I thought was interesting again, is just we’ve obviously been focused on bringing this experience and making sure it works well for users, and it’s very clear to me, first of all, as a user myself, there are certain queries for which the answers are so significantly better, it’s a clear answer.
So I think we are definitely headed in the right direction and we can see it in our metrics and the feedback from our users as well. So again, you know, take this maybe with a grain of salt, but the CEO says it’s a clear quality win. You know, I think from all of our experience, sometimes the results are good and sometimes they’re terrible, right?
It gives false information. But I think the overall message again that we should take as SEOs is that they are not backing down from the SGE. They are doubling down on it. We’re going to see it more and more. It’s going to become the norm and you know, we kind of just need to get used to it. It’s, it’s going to be the new norm.
Josh: And, and I think like Marie made a good point is like that search is not going to go away, which of course it’s not even with this. So it’s adapting and understanding it as an SEO. But, you know, early on, whenever they started showing like screenshots of, of what SGE was doing and looking like it was, they mentioned commercial a lot, commercial intent.
And there was shopping results, right? So it’s, so maybe the path forward is more e commerce lean, right? Or the, like the display sites and affiliate sites, you know, how much, I mean, I think they have a ways to go, but how much longer, right? If it’s you know, how to change a flat tire, well, you don’t need to read a 2, 000 word article on how to change a flat tire.
They can just give you the bullet point list in 200 words. Right. So I think, you know, it depends on, I guess, where you stand and what you’re working on or who you’re working for. You know, in like a brick and mortar business or a local service based business for queries that there’s just no way around it, right?
If you’re trying to find a AC repair guy, like AI can’t, can’t solve that for you. You know? Mm
Spencer: hmm. Yeah, exactly. They do. They talked a lot about commercial intent. And of course, the ability, I, I don’t have the exact quote here, but essentially the ability to serve ads, you know, he talked a lot about Google has been an ad company for 20 years and they’re going to continue to be an ad company and they’re going to, of course, display ads and, and monetize the SGE results.
You know, one thing that we could do is that I do have access to the. SGE experience in my normal, you know, Google. So I’m seeing it every day on all of my queries now. It’s just by default. It’s turned on for me. Yeah. So it’s not even part of beta. It’s it’s very mixed results on mobile. I don’t like it because it’s slow.
It takes a few seconds to get results. And so, I find myself, like, it’s thinking about generating, and I scroll past it and get the normal results. So, on mobile, I don’t like it because it’s slow. Desktop, it’s, it’s, it’s okay, it’s about fast enough. But it’s, again, it’s very mixed, it depends on the query.
Kind of, kind of what you said, if it’s very informational, like a quick answer it’s decent and it, and it’s okay. But, but for other queries I find myself scrolling past it. I would say probably at least 50% of the time I just skip it. It’s like, eh, I, you know, I want real results. Right, so we could, I was, yeah, I was going to say we could do some live tests right here.
If you want here, I you know, best headphones for gaming that should, yeah, it’s generating, you can see. And it, it takes a while. I mean, look at this, it’s like 10 seconds. Yeah. And that article, you
Josh: know, it’s two times faster now. So,
Spencer: They got a ways to go here.
Josh: It’s like you know, it looks like a shopping ad.
I can’t see what that website is.
Spencer: Yeah, this one SteelSeries. Yeah, I’m not sure. Okay,
Josh: that’s interesting because like when I looked at the article from Marie, it’s a lot of the, the screenshots that either she got from Twitter or that she used, you know, the websites are CVS Walgreens or Amazon or like Walmart.
They’re large retailers. There wasn’t as many smaller, you know, e commerce shops. And it’s, so it makes me wonder, right. If you’re a. A smaller like D t c site or if you’re a, a drop shipper, right? Or are you gonna be kind of phased out because like the, the authority that we know in ss e o for these larger e-comm sites are gonna overpower
Spencer: you, you know?
Yeah. And it’s interesting that when I click the results, it just pulls a, a popup here. It doesn’t take me to the website, right. I’ve gotta click again. Yep. I’ve got a, I come over here and then it’s, it’s got, you know, three different options. Big three, three big three. Best Buy,
Josh: Walmart, Amazon. Right? It’s
Spencer: And, it’s, it’s unclear, it doesn’t, at least it doesn’t designate that these are ads, you know, anywhere, that these are shopping results, but maybe, maybe they are, right?
People paid to be in position here. But I guess
Josh: they would have to they would have to have something stating that, right?
Spencer: I would think so, that’s what they do everywhere else. Right. Maybe let’s do one other query. Do we want to see a commercial intent or maybe an informational query? Let’s try informational.
Yeah. All right. How to change a flat tire. Okay, there you
This one did not generate results. You know, I can generate it, but let’s let’s try a different one. How to install, well a ring doorbell, is that, no? Yeah, so, that’s interesting, a lot of these informational. Best, I’m just gonna let it finish. Best place to buy a mattress. Oh, this is gonna generate some results for us.
And again, it takes a while. So this is more local result, I mean, at least you get the local pack. Yeah, these are all local, local firms, you know, local stores, so. Interesting. I mean,
Josh: it’s good, I guess, for a, for a local business, right? Maybe, you know, you’re still going to have the map pack there.
Josh: And I guess one thing is, is if you were, you know, like you and I have talked about this, right. It’s just owning the customer, right. Is if you have something where you own the customer and you have a brand, like if you are actual, like a DTC brand, or if you have a, your own products, your SAS or whatever it might be that you’re selling you know, in the end, I mean, it’s, I think now is maybe more important time than ever to.
To try to maybe lean that way. I mean, of course, you know, you’re not getting all the traffic that you would try to maybe get by, you know, content marketing and stuff like that.
Spencer: Yeah, absolutely. I mean owning the customer I think is is where people should go and then this last, you know, best survival knife We broke it. It says it’s not available. It tried to generate it and there was no result. So So there you go So, yeah, interesting earnings call, you know, that’s kind of what’s going on, but I guess the message is that, hey, Google is at least saying that they’re going to invest and double down on SGE, so don’t expect it to go anywhere anytime soon.
The next big news topic that happened this week is that Twitter, rebranded, changed their name, is now X you know, something like that. I don’t know exactly what’s going on, if I’m honest. You know, Elon Musk has big ideas. And you know. If you go to, I don’t know why anybody would, but if you went to X.
com, it now redirects to Twitter. com. You know, if you go to Twitter, it’s got the, you know, the X logo, so they’ve rolled that out. But it’s still Twitter. com. You know, something
Josh: interesting about the X logo is that meta has the, has a trademark for X. I heard that. Yeah, in one of these articles, right, it said that, so it’s like I mean, that just could be very interesting.
I guess over the, in the future, right? It’s your competitors using. Your trademark for their logo.
Spencer: Yeah. Yeah. They really do need to get in that cage match and just, you know, duke it out Wonder who gets the trademark. Yeah everything So yeah, that’s the big news is twitter. So maybe i’ll share my screen You know, there’s lots of articles that are on this and i’m sure most people have heard about this at least if you’re using twitter you know, you’ve heard about it, you know, just here’s here’s one article you know They, they’ve rebranded to X and they, they changed the logo, as we mentioned, and all that it’s I, I don’t know, there’s a line in here, but essentially, Elon Musk has a grand vision for what X should become basically the everything store, the, the everything brand, you know, he wants it to become a brand that you can send payments, you, you message each other, you, you shop you, you microblog, you know, it’s Twitter.
And so it’s becoming the. Everything brand they haven’t added any of those new features yet. It doesn’t do anything different. It’s just Twitter with an X logo at the moment, but I guess the vision is to make it this massive, massive brand that does everything.
Josh: And one thing, right. It, these articles mentioned is he’s had this idea since 1999.
He, he tried to, he tried when they did PayPal, right. He wanted to be x. com, but they’re like, okay, now we’re, we’re going to go with PayPal. And, you know, nobody would do it with him back then, but I guess now it’s, he’s got the money and so he, maybe he’s just going to go out and do it on his own now, you know?
Yeah. I mean, I think it’s, it’s super interesting. It’s, you know, we can sit here in, in armchair and say, man, this guy has no idea what he’s doing. He’s, he’s destroying Twitter. But then at the same time is, you know, like he has like the largest electric car company. He’s sending rockets to outer space.
So he’s doing something, he knows how to do something whether it, you know, I guess, spills over to a social media network or building this, this massive network. Things would be interesting to see.
Spencer: Yeah, if, if anything that we’ve maybe learned as a, as a takeaway from Elon Musk is that when he has an idea, he acts quickly and he implements it.
Right? We’ve seen that over the course that he’s owned Twitter. He’s made so many changes and so quickly. You know, firing tons of people and then bringing new people in and now changing you know. The brand itself, it, it is interesting. I’m going to share a tweet by Walter Isaacson here in a second.
About yeah, how long Elon has, has owned, you know, x. com many, many years. But this does kind of feel like the, the sense that I get is that yeah, back in 1999 and 2000, he had this idea to have x. com be everything, but it almost feels like It, it sort of was revived when Twitter started doing poorly. I mean, we know that since Elon Musk took over Twitter is, is not doing as well.
It lost tons of advertisers and lots of other metrics are showing that it’s not making as much money. So it almost feels like when the light bulb went on one night, he’s like, Oh, I wonder if we could turn Twitter into my X. com vision. That’s almost what it feels like. And he’s making it happen.
Josh: But also like, you know, like mentioning the losing advertisers and money, is it, is it due to the way he runs it or is it the way people feel emotionally about him, you know, and, and, and trying to stay in the middle.
He’s like, people love him or they hate him. Right. And I, I mean, I guess not to get too deep, but I guess time will tell. Right. As if he can turn this thing around and bring his vision to life. Yeah,
Spencer: yeah, absolutely. And so a very interesting tweet from Walter Isaacson. He’s a biographer He is writing a book on Elon Musk right now.
He’s followed him around for the last couple of years and Basically says the infatuation of Elon Musk with the name x. com goes way back and then he writes about some expert Excerpts from his book, again, we already kind of talked about it, that he really thought PayPal should be you know, x. com should be the name of PayPal when they merged they, they fought over this, and so, since 1999, 24 years, He’s had this X.
com vision and so now he is you know, sort of, sort of celebrating that and here’s a couple of pictures, you know, X. com back in you know, with Peter Thiel back in 99 or whenever this was, right? And here they are today. Celebrating the new rebrand. So just fascinating to watch. We’ll see, will it make more waves?
Will it just be a logo change and Twitter’s not going to, you know, do much different, we’ll find out soon. I mean, you
Josh: know, I mean, I guess you, you got a site that has a large user base, you know, so you kind of got a built in audience there to try all these things with whether or not they stick around and like it, but.
Time will tell. Yep,
Spencer: exactly. And so one other sort of side story related to this, you know, imagine owning the Twitter handle at X Goldmine, right? Well, not quite so much. Yeah, Twitter decided to just take it from the guy. Somebody has had the at X username since 2007 and all he got was an email saying We’re going to take over that username for you.
And your new username is somewhere down here. If you can see the screen, it’s X 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, you know, something like that. It’s like 10 characters. It’s wild.
Josh: And he had, you know, over 50, 000 followers and since 2007, and I guess they weren’t nice enough to, to give him his followers and all of his tweet data, I guess, on his new account.
But. Yeah, he couldn’t help the guy out with a better username, you
Spencer: know, yeah now so so it’s funny You know, they they took the at X username, but they did offer him a visit to the X Headquarters to meet members of the team. So maybe he’s happy with that.
Josh: Well, he said he’s been there before He said he’d been with a friend and they offered him merch and he said well, I want I want Twitter merch I don’t want X merch
Oh, I love it. That’s where he’ll get his money, selling his Twitter
Spencer: merch on eBay. There you go, yeah, it’s going out of style. Very good. So that primarily covers the news that we wanted to share today, those couple of big stories. Always changes happening. So next we are going to chat about our shiny object shenanigans.
But before we do I wanted to give a shout out to a couple of people that have left reviews. We always love getting reviews on the podcast. And so if you are listening to this, go over to Apple podcasts. Leave a review and you will have the opportunity to have your review read on the podcast live.
And if you mention your website, we’ll mention it if you want. These couple that we got recently don’t have their website, but I’ll go ahead and read them anyways. Five stars, great podcast. Niche pursuits is a great podcast. I love listening, listening to it on my long runs. I think we’ve run over a hundred miles together and it helps me come up with new ideas and strategies to bring back my business.
So, thank you so much for the review there, and then one other one here from eTravelTips, I don’t know if that’s the website or the name, but it’s eTravelTips just says, best podcast for niche sites, I’m a long time listener, I’ve tried multiple podcasts, I really appreciate the wide variety of content and guests on the show, thank you Spencer for all that you do.
So, thank you for leaving those reviews, and again people can go over to Apple Podcasts if they want to leave a review and maybe we’ll read yours on the next show. Okay, very good. So let’s chat about our shiny object shenanigans shall we? And maybe I’ll go ahead and go first and jump in, jump into what I got going on.
I do have a few things that I’m working on the side. One of those that I’ve talked about a little bit in the past is RankLogic. So I did just launch a software tool called RankLogic over at RankLogic. com. And I still call this a side project because, well, I just launched it. It, it still is not my main thing.
But it, it took me a long time to get to launch. It feels great to get it out the door and it was very well received. I will just simply say that it did better than I was expecting. Josh knows I kind of shared some numbers in terms of, I thought, you know, I’ll be happy if it does. X, and well, it did more than, than X, right?
And, and so I’m very happy with that. But we’ve continued to ve to develop it. One of the newest features that we just launched since, you know, I released it, so just in the last week basically, is that, and I’ll, I’ll share my screen maybe so people can see this. Let me give you a quick overview,
Josh: Also, for if anybody’s new and doesn’t know, I guess, what exactly…
The other features were, you know? Yeah.
Spencer: Yeah, very good. So RankLogic is an analytics dashboard, a keyword tracker, and also a content update tracker. So it allows you to see, you know, if you’re seeing my screen, you can see the positions and the changes of all your keywords. You can dive into a lot of the data.
And start to figure out which keywords are performing best or which ones are, are performing worse, you know, which new keywords should you target, and then it automatically tracks content updates for you and notates events on your graph if you want to see when you’ve made those content changes and then it allows you to slice and dice the data in a lot of different ways, and so you can select a specific author and you can see how the content is performing for a individual author on your website.
But the two new features is this categories and tags filter. And so I can now see exactly how much traffic all the content from one specific category is generating on my website. So I have a category called start a business. It’s kind of a catch all for a lot of things that are related to. Starting a business on my website.
And so I can just like that. I can now see that. Okay, this category is generating You know 4, 000 3, 800 clicks per day and I can see how it’s trending. It looks like it’s increasing, right? Which it’s pretty cool. And then I can go to another category and start to see okay Let’s look at side hustles And start to figure out, okay, should I be writing more content in this category?
Should I write less content? You know, this sort of side hustle category is generating around 1, 700 to 2, 000 clicks a day. And it appears to be kind of flat this month, right? But I can go back and look at older history. The other thing is tags, right? So if you use tags on your articles, you can…
See how well a specific tag what the traffic looks like. So, anyways, I just wanted to mention that we’re still working on RankLogic. It’s, it’s, again, a side hustle still at this point for me. But we just came out with a couple of new features. If people want to check it out they can go over to RankLogic dot com.
It’s coming in very handy. For a lot of things in particular, and I guess Josh, you’re using it for the same thing is seeing is grouping artificial intelligence content. I think both of us are kind of testing out is a I content doing well. And so we can very quickly group that a I content together and say, okay, that’s generating, you know, an extra couple 100 clicks a day or whatever it is.
Josh: love the category and tag feature. So now I can go and see, you know, which categories are I mean, like you just displayed it, right, but like, which ones are performing better or, you know, to double down on, especially with AI content is like, okay, let’s put another 500 articles in this category,
Exactly. Exactly. So anyways, that’s, that’s what I got going on. It’s, it’s going well, but yeah. What, what about you, Josh? What’s what’s kind of your side hustle you’re working on?
Josh: Yeah, so like you mentioned the AI, AI content and sites it just intrigues me you know, a lot and, you know, people are having success with it and then some people aren’t having success with it.
I think it’s kind of hit and miss. I think at the end of April I set up one site you know, it’s a new domain 40 something articles and then I just kind of left it alone. I mean nothing like, oh wow, like I got to get back and get to work on this, right? A few clicks, impressions Somewhere a month or two in, I think like 20 or so articles just got de indexed.
And then recently I put another 100, 150 articles on it. But then I have a site that is about 3 years old. It’s a DR 29. I did a lot of, a lot of HARO and so I got a lot of, like industry, like, you know, good links, you know. That I had last year that was getting about 1, 000, 1, 500 visits a day last year.
Ended up getting hit towards, like, end of summer down to like 200 visits a day. I essentially just kind of wrote the site off. It, like, I just, I was done. I didn’t want to mess with it. Let it sit, and then I’m like, okay, you know what? Like, why not just go ahead and put a bunch of AI content?
Like, it’s dead to me, so let’s just see what happens. I’ve been kind of playing with my workflow, and I’m, like, I started here, I guess July 10th. Google Search Console showed I had 321 pages indexed and then now, July 22nd, I have 1, 482 pages indexed. Woah. So like, my workflow, I’ve got it down, I can, I can publish about 200 articles a day and this is me, no VA, so I, I, I get up in the morning before going to work, and I publish about 100, and then at night, before going to bed, I’ll publish about another 100.
So I’m traffic is up in search console the last 28 days compared to each other up 30%. Nice. But the interesting thing is, is it’s not from the new content. It’s the old content. So before I started doing this, I had 233 articles live on the site. And right now I’m over 1, 500, 1, 600 in there. But I’m using rank logic.
And so I can go and I look at the data and say, Hey, everything published after July 1st, because I mean, nothing has been published in about a year. So I can see everything published after July 1st. And like, I can see, okay, Hey, wow. Some things are starting to rank. Some things are getting impressions.
Some things are getting clicks. It’s very minor. Right. But when I see the impressions and traffic is going up on the site, it’s all of the older content. So it’s really interesting.
Spencer: Why do you think that is?
Josh: Well, one, Google’s been, there’s been a lot of turbulence in Google, I guess the last few weeks.
And if I was to show like the traffic graph of this site when it initially got hit, it, you know, it was, it was on a nice incline, just went and nosedived. I didn’t touch it, did nothing. Months later I looked in search console and they were having problems rendering my content. And then it came back, and then it just slowly started to fade out.
The only thing I can think is one, either the turbulence or Google, or two, the fact that now I’m adding two to five hundred articles in specific categories. I’m going in three categories, I believe. So the relevance that I’m building around these topics now. Is, is helping bring up the old content, maybe?
I mean, that’s kind of what I
Spencer: think, yeah. Getting some topical authority a little bit, right? You’ve got related content in the categories. Yeah,
Josh: because I mean, the, the categories, there’s people that have sites on these specific categories, two to three hundred pages, right? And now I’m getting two, three, four, five hundred pages on that same topic in one category.
Rather quickly but I don’t know. I mean, it’s still early to tell this is just started like this month. So we’ll see in the next two or three months, I think for whatever reason, I have my head set on getting to 5, 000 articles,
Spencer: Nice round
Josh: number. Yeah. You know, it’s so to get there, I mean, I’m spending about anywhere from four to seven cents an article and then my time, so it’s.
Not like it’s
Spencer: costing me a lot of money. It’s not costing me a lot of money. We gotta stop. There’s too many listeners that are like, Okay, how is he producing this much content for four to six cents an article? So, spill the beans, Josh. Like, you got a secret tool, or you got, I don’t know, slave labor that works for free, or
Josh: like, what’s going on?
Well, AI, the robots. Yeah, okay, so I am using two tools. So I use Koala. Not an affiliate, not endorsed, right? I, I do think it is one of the better AI tools on the market. I did get into their lifetime deal. I took a gamble and he’s continued to develop new features. Very impressed with what he’s doing.
So I have 500, 000 words a month with my lifetime deal. If I use GPT 3. 5, I think it gets me around 150 articles at 2000 words or whatever that math is off. So maybe. 200 articles, right? A month. If I use GPT 4 it’s 5x the credit, so I get very little. I’m using 3. 5 there. And then doing that, but then I’m using Zimrider.
Which is a desktop application, right? You gotta download the file, put it on your computer. And there I use my own API key. I can use DaVinci 3. 5 or 4. I’m using 3. 5 there, so it is about, that’s how I’m getting these articles for 5 to 7 cents. I’ve seen people there using GPT 4 and they’re around 50 cents.
Which again, 50 cents an article is not bad, right? But if you’re publishing… You know, thousands a week, it’s gonna start to
Spencer: add up. It could
Josh: add up. Exactly, right? And for this experiment, I’m not prepared to to do that. You know, if it if it works and gets into Mediavine and starts making more money, then, you know, I’ll try other things.
Alright. But, so yeah, that’s essentially it. You know, I You know, I go and pick a topic say tires and put it in Ahrefs and filter out all the questions. You know, DR under 15 let it rip, pull it out, put it in a keyword cluster tool, pull that out, throw it into either tool each have a bulk writing tool, let it bulk write Koala will send it to WordPress, Zimrider won’t, but there is a free WordPress plugin that can import them and, and just to clarify, I am not editing anything, right?
I, I literally just.
Spencer: This is a side project, right? This is just like an experiment. Like, let’s see what happens. I know this isn’t perfect, but let’s go for it. Yeah.
Josh: Yeah, I mean I, like, was previously invested a lot of money in this site. Probably tens of thousands of dollars, right? Like, with links and content and trying to do it at all, right?
It got hit. And so now it’s like, eh, if I can spend a few bucks, five bucks a week and publish a thousand articles, why not?
Spencer: And it’s fun.
Josh: Exactly, and it’s something cool to talk about and see. You know, I mentioned to you before, right? Like, I got a buddy, he’s publishing about a thousand articles a day. And to see how fast his site’s growing is unreal.
So… I don’t know, I guess part of me wants to see if I could replicate that on a little bit smaller scale. Yeah.
Spencer: And see what happens. I think it’s cool. It’s always fun to chat about these, like, yeah, just cool experiments in AI and we may have to bring you back on and, you know, maybe Jared will go on vacation in another month and we can have you back on and talk about this.
Or if it does well enough, we’ll just have a regular Niche Pursuits podcast interview and be like, Okay, let’s, let’s dive into this. Yeah, we’ll see how it goes. Yeah. That’s awesome. Very good. So let’s move on to our final subject of the day. We’re gonna talk about One Weird Niche. Our One Weird Niche site that each of us has found out there.
And in my case, I don’t know that it’s weird per se, but it is an extremely successful website. And so let me share my screen here. And I’m sure we’ve all seen these types of websites out there. It’s basically a convert something to PDF. Like convert your Word document to PDF. It’s PDF. pdf2go.
com, the number two. pdf2go. com is the website, and, you know, on their home page, you know, free online pdf converter. They’ve got, I don’t know, a couple of dozen different way, things that you can do, right? You can split your pdf, merge your pdf, edit your pdf, compress your pdf, convert from pdf, convert to pdf, right?
All these different things, and of course they rank really well in Google, if you were to search for, you know, Word to PDF or convert Word to PDF. They rank really well for this term. I don’t know if they’re number one or not. But they rank really well, and they’ve got ads. I don’t know if you can see it down here.
They’ve got an ad here, and I think there’s another ad block somewhere. There’s a couple of ad blocks. Mm hmm. I
Josh: noticed right there in the navigation, it also has a pricing, so maybe it’s premium. Yeah, it,
Spencer: I believe that they do have a premium. Yeah, interesting, yeah. Right, so they’ve, they’ve got some upgraded features.
It looks like it’s, yeah, it’s 6. 50 a month for file conversion, editing, and compression, right? So you must be able to get some higher quality editing or other tools. So it’s, it’s still cheap, but Once you see how much traffic their website is getting, you have to wonder how many people do convert, you know, to these, these premium prices.
So I went over and I found both on a trefs and on similar web, similar web says that they are getting 8. 7 million visitors. And Ahrefs shows that they are getting 11. 6 million organic visitors a month. So, I think they’re getting at least 10 million visitors a month, probably, when you look between the two tools.
It’s insane, right? And if we look at some of the keywords, right, it’s things that I mentioned. Word to PDF, PDF editor online, compressed PDF, etc.
Josh: Just some quick math, if we’re getting 10 million visitors a month, if half a percent of that would convert to premium, that would put you at 50, 000 50, 000 paying subscribers a month.
Wow. At 6. 50 would be 325, 000 a month. Plus the ad revenue, which probably very low RPMs, right?
Spencer: Probably absolutely incredible.
Josh: So it’s easily low to mid six figure website a
Spencer: month. Yeah. Maybe a seven figure website a month. Like who knows? I mean, you have to think even at half a percent, maybe that’s high.
I, I don’t know what, you know, for the most part of this. You know, most people just want to convert their PDF and move on with their lives. But I just clicked on the about us page and it. It takes you to a different website, QA, Omgo, anyways, and they are a whole company with tons of brands, right?
They’ve got PDF to go, image to go, metadata to go, compressed to go, right? They’ve got about 8 different brands and it says every month more than 20 million visitors worldwide use our projects. Wow. So I love, love websites like this that have developed Like a, a simple little tool that you have to imagine that they started out as just one free tool.
There was probably one idea, hey, convert Word to PDF or whatever the first thing was, and it took off and it just did really well and so they built, okay, well let’s keep doing it. We’re ranking in Google, we’re getting links, we’re getting traffic I just, I would love to have a business like this where I could just build some tool and invest, you know, I don’t know how much, you know, let’s call it 10, 000 into some free tool that you just give away instead of charging.
You just say, Hey, I’m going to give this away. I’m going to get free traffic. I’m going to make money with display ads. And maybe there’s some premium features. So I think it’s a cool business. I love stuff like this.
Josh: And here’s an idea. Maybe reach out to that, that site and see if they’ll come on the podcast and talk about it.
That would be cool. That would be super interesting, you know?
Spencer: Yeah. Yeah if I go over to their about us, well, they’ve got to contact us, but Yeah, careers and everything, yeah, so, They’re, they’re probably a pretty big, you have to imagine, they’re a pretty decent sized company at this point, but, but there you go, I’d love, So if anybody knows anybody at PDF2GO, Put him in touch with the podcast.
Let, let me know. I’ll, I’ll see if we can get him on. So alright. Josh, what do you got for your weird niche site?
Josh: Okay, so I guess, somewhat similar, right? It’s tool again, not super weird. But it’s actually, it’s a calculator. Or,
Spencer: you gonna pull it up, or you… Yeah, yeah, let me I got it right here.
Josh: So this actually, I use this tool every week. So… Every week to, to track Link Whisper’s KPIs to see where we’re at, like what’s going good, what’s not going good. And I like to see what the percentage, like, where it decreased, increased, or where we’re at. And this is the tool that I use and I found it, you know, just a Google search, percentage calculator.
So, you know, you see there, it’s just three different types of percentages. You put in any numbers, and it’ll calculate it for you. And then of course, right, it’s just a display ad site. But when I, what really. Like I think it’s intriguing so much already in itself, but then when I put it into ahrefs like it intrigued me so much more because when I went to the top pages of this site The site is only three pages.
Spencer: That’s what I was just gonna ask. It looked like there wasn’t any navigation
Josh: Yeah, it’s it’s the calculator. It’s a help page and a privacy page and that’s it you know and according to ahrefs it gets 220 000 visits a month back in 2020, I think they were around like a million plus visits a month.
And I believe like if you search it, like percentage calculator, I think they’re like in the top five. So they’re not number one, number two, number three. And of course I tried everybody above them and this was the simplest tool for me that I felt like worked the best. I thought this was the best result.
But again, I mean, it’s like throw the tool up in a weekend, a couple of pages and. You know, and I didn’t check to see how old the site is. Let me pull
Spencer: it almost looks like, based on their AHS graph, that it might be a redirect or something. Because it looks like immediately in 2017, they, you know, their traffic went way up.
It kind of looks like it maybe came from somewhere else. So I wonder if they redirected,
Josh: Yeah, this domain says it’s 15 years old, so it… Okay. So it definitely should have more history.
Spencer: Yeah, yeah. And and then on similar web here, which I know you also had pulled up, looks like it, it says 2. 4 million visitors a month.
So, pretty impressive. I’m
Josh: looking now to see if I can see any redirects. Just at a quick glance, I’m not seeing them. Maybe they’re further back But yeah, I mean, super interesting, right? And then it’s There’s a few people on Twitter that are sharing these calculator type tools and these PDF type tools as well, and it’s, you know, I just wonder, you know, is it still viable?
Could you start right now and get one going and, you know, compete with these guys? But then, of course, you look at the AI content and say you could, I guess, build out a lot of… Related calculator content, you know,
Spencer: Yeah, that’s true interesting. Yeah, really interesting Very simple like it would be simple to replicate the calculator, right?
But but they’ve got sort of the legacy authority and domain that they’re clearly ranking well in google So you’d have to replicate kind of all the the links that they’ve gotten accumulated over the years so it’d probably be tough to compete on this exact thing, but maybe there’s a similar concept in a, a different niche, right?
It’s some other calculator or some other tool that would, would work. But I, I love it. I mean, the website of course is just plastered with ads. I mean, clearly, you know, there’s like five or six ad units that keep refreshing, you know, just, just right here. But Hey, you know, and again, they’re giving me a free calculator.
Josh: Yeah. I imagine the RPMs are super low, you know. But I mean, I bet you could just ask chat GPT to build this calculator for you and throw it on a webpage and somebody tried to rank it and let us know how it goes, you know,
Spencer: that’s right. Yeah. We would, we would love to hear how your attempts go for that, but no, another good example of yeah, just a really unique niche site that if we were trying to estimate how much money this site was making, right.
If it’s getting a couple of million visitors a month. Gosh, I’d have to do some quick math there, but doing pretty well, even with really low RPMs, right? It’s still making… It’s a five figure site, yeah, a little five figure, I would say, for sure. Yeah, yeah, definitely over ten grand a month, right? Yeah, yeah, I’m thinking…
Maybe twenty grand a month, but… Twenty,
Josh: twenty thirty grand a month at two dollar RPMs, you know?
Spencer: Right, exactly. So, not bad for something that this guy probably built 15 years ago. I wonder if he’s… These are the guys, I really do need to find them and interview these, these people on the podcast. Yeah, it would be
Josh: amazing, right?
And what else does this guy have? This ain’t the only one, you know. I didn’t even try to see if there’s any more links
Spencer: or what, just J2Digital at the bottom is the only, like, so maybe,
Josh: Search that and see if we could
Spencer: find him. Maybe, maybe there’s something, yeah. Or maybe in the privacy there’s a…
Well, there you go. Publisher Jerry Jari Jokinen in Finland. So, I’ve got his address. I need to mail him a letter and… Oh, there you go, there’s an email. Boom. Oh, there you go. Is that really his email? First name dot last name at J2 dot F I. Anyways. So maybe, maybe I will you know, try to reach out to him and have him on the podcast.
I think it’d be cool to hear about. Yeah, because I mean,
Josh: imagine spinning up 5, 10, 20 of those you know, 10, 15 years ago. Just incredible,
Spencer: you know? Yeah, not a bad way to make a living. That’s for sure. So, well, there you have it. I think we went through all of our subjects. We covered the weird niches, we covered the news, we shared our shiny objects that we’re working on.
So Josh, thanks for filling in, for Jared, coming on and, and sharing your thoughts with everybody out there. Anything any final thoughts that you wanted to share before we sign off here today? No,
Josh: I mean, but thanks for having me, Spencer. It was a good time and You know, just a reminder tonight, the, the link was for sale in.
So go visit link was for. com and save some money.
Spencer: Yeah, absolutely. So thank you everybody for listening. Hopefully you got some valuable information, enjoyed the show and we’ll catch you next time.