How to rank an Adsense / Amazon affiliate website

Case study on how to rank an adsense / amazon affiliate based website in the search engines.

Areas covered:

  • How to pick a niche for adsense / amazon
  • Keyword Research
  • Domain Registration
  • Onpage Optimizations
  • Content generation
  • Offpage Promotions
  • – Link Building and Social Network Signals
  • Monetization
  • Ranking Results
  • $$ Earned

This is a 100% transparent guide on the exact system used.

Picking a niche:

We are going to promote physical products on Amazon, so we should choose a vertical that offers a good amount of choices, but not something that is too broad where it’s overwhelming, i.e instead of choosing Vacuums (extremely large niche), we chose a subset which is Robot Vacuums (moderately large niche).

Even though we could safely assume there is a large market for Robot Vacuums we want to ensure there is a good amount of searches, and a High level of bidding competition (which means you get more per click from adsense as advertisers are willing to pay more).

Keyword Research:

Google’s Adword Keyword tool is an often overlooked yet extremely powerful tool to assess potential and find related keywords for both onpage content and offpage anchor text usage.

The search volumes are high for the main phrases as well as ancillary ones, while the earnings per click look to be very healthy with suggested bids around $1.00. Chances are if a product is being sold on Amazon there was a good amount of market research already performed (no one creates robot vacuums, investing millions of dollars if there isn’t a market for it, so it’s a safe bet to assume a popular vertical on Amazon will yield adsense/affiliate earnings).

Choosing a Domain:

Should pick a domain name with the keyword phrase in it, but not necessarily an EMD (exact match domain) as they were penalized. We went with

http://robotvacuumhut.com

Onpage Optimizations:

We installed a random wordpress theme (can probably find better ones) and began the onpage optimization process. This meant having a keyword rich title that didn’t repeat itself, but had complimentary phrases / synonyms and singular / plural instances. Also, uploading logos/images with alt text. The h1 tag is a reiteration of the title, Vacuum Reviews, vs focusing too heavily on robot vacuums which could lead to penalties.

Content Generation:

Since this website is review based, we wanted to give the reader the features/benefits of each robot vacuum, along with a relevant Youtube video embedded. This is enough value to justify driving traffic to this website, as the end user learns more about each robot vacuum, can compare its price, ratings, and watch it in action on Youtube.

*Big mistake*

Thinking we could throw almost any content on the website was a costly mistake. We outsourced the writing to a non-native English writer. While his writing is good enough for article marketing, it lacks the nuiances to help convert a visitor into clicking through to Amazon and purchasing, or staying on the site long enough to find a relevant adsense ad unit and click through. Our bounce rate was very high with this low quality content.

We then rewrote all the reviews using only native English writers.

Offpage Promotions:

Link Building: We view this website as an investment. We wanted to rank, but didn’t want to take huge shortcuts and risk getting penalized by a Google update. This is the exact services we used to rank for long term results:

Social Network Signals

Web2.0backlinks

BookmarkingBeast

High Pr Blog Comments

Manual Forum Posting

Authority Site Links

High PR Links

Total Investment: Around $2000 retail price (not including content creation)

Monetization:

The website uses Google adsense for relevant ads on the review pages, along with a buy now button that takes the visitor to the respective Amazon page

Here are the Keyword Rankings for the main 3 phrases tracked:

Tracking with Rank Tracker (free version)

Our offpage efforts have built a stable amount of organic Social Network Signals along with diverse backlinks. We are still creating links using the above techniques and are now using 400 related phrases based on Google keyword tool to avoid any over anchor text optimization penalties and cast a wide net of possible search engine traffic. Ahrefs.com shows our Offpage efforts increasing in addition to the obvioius rank improvements.

link-building-for-adsense-affiliate-webpage

And Piwik to track our website visitors.

adsense amazon affiliate website keyword rankings

Over the last few months our organic search engine traffic has gradually increased. The amount of keywords have also increased, with hundreds of different ones (not all shown) were used, also known as longtail phrases. To uncover keywords not provided and understand the greatest potential keywords, i.e. ones ranking on page 2 but get good search volume we use a really solid tool – Traffic Analysis by Swiss Made Marketing.

traffic analysis keyword potential adwords search volume

 $$$$ Earned:

We have just recently added Google adsense (still need to optimize our placements/colors) and are starting to get a good amount of Click Throughs to Amazon. We will either update this post or create a new one to notify you. Any predictions on earnings?

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Dan and Matt Anton

Dan and Matt Anton are the creators of BacklinksVault, a community for online marketers to blog, learn, contribute and use the best tools and services available.

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